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Surviving Elite High (Surviving Elite High #1)

3.36  ·  Rating Details ·  580 Ratings  ·  101 Reviews
A new and better edition under Ai Press...

John Henry Ames is a sixteen-year-old boy from a small New Jersey town. John is humble, shy and studious. He lives as an outcast in the shadows of an elite high school where he is tormented by two psychopathic bullies.

On the verge of dropping out of school due to overdue payments, a teacher enrolls him in a tutoring program where h
Kindle Edition, Third Edition, 161 pages
Published January 2nd 2014 by Ai Press (first published June 18th 2012)
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(showing 1-30)
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Apr 24, 2013 Karel rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nomance
Summary of Nick, High School Student and part-time Nutjob:

a) Fights like a pro and routinely puts people in the hospital but
b) Does not get expelled
c) Capable of putting on underwear with his towel still on.
d) Doesn't stop fucking women until they - I quote - crawl out of bed on a wheelchair.
e) When cell phone gift is refused by friend, says, "Don't you want to know if I'm going to jail?"

Summary of John, High School Student and part-time Self-Insert

a) Loves Burger King. Thinks everyone lov
Jeff Erno
Apr 24, 2012 Jeff Erno rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Surviving Elite High is a jock/nerd love story told in first person by the central character John. The story chronicles the development of a teen romance involving the shy, self-effacing narrator with the jock football hero he's tutoring. Elite High has several unique plot twists that include a school shooting, a tempting love interest who threatens the primary romance, and a psychotic ex-girlfriend. Ames' writing style is endearing and captivating. The emotion seems to leap through the pages, ...more
Jun 22, 2012 Portia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’m not going to waste time restating the blurb above. It’s a pretty good overview of Surviving Elite High. But, what it doesn’t reveal is just how fabulous this book really is. I’ve never been a big fan of the whole 90210 vibe of some YA romance novels. Somehow, the poor guy always gets screwed and the rich guy is never as good as we want him to be. But, reading Surviving Elite High was like watching the pilot of a new TV series (with its growing pains) and watching the growth of the actors and ...more

The growing up process sucks enough as it is so getting bullied at school is another cross to bear its one scary place to be for unpopular teens. Expect quite a bit of angst and tears and a lot of emotional ups and downs when reading this romance. Its not all doom and gloom though you also get some really interesting and likable female friends, the gossips sessions, the bitchy digs, the love and affection shown for John is both lovely and crazy. Madison and Kitty are a great addition to this sto
Veronica /  V
Not very fond of drama and tears, but, so many good reviews I need to give this story a chance.


Marvelous, terrific, wonderful!! I can't tell you enough how fantastic this story was.
I was worry about the tears and drama, I wasn't sure if I wanted to read this story.
I'm so glad I did.
The tears were justified, John was such a beautiful and sensitive character, he feel so deep about everything. I felt in love with him from page one.
Nick, was just perfect for him, not the typi
Jul 14, 2012 Candice rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Candice by: Vio
I went into this story with a little apprehension, first because I normally do not read YA stories and second because from the blurb and reviews I knew there would be bullying, drama and tears. I am so glad that I did read it because I would have missed out so much on such a refreshing and wonderful story. There is so much to love about John and you can't help but love him from page one of the story. I was a little leary at first of Nick, because I kept waiting for him to be a jerk to John or ...more
Nov 17, 2012 Bookwatcher rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf, teen-ya, glbt-gay, romance

Free online Urban dictionary definition of badass

1. Badass
A badass isn't someone wears ripped leather jackets, a badass isn't someone who breaks stuff to look tough, and a badass isn't someone who fights for the fun of fighting. That's the definition of a poser. Being a badass is completely different.

Unspoken Rules of Being Badass:
1. First rule of being a badass. A badass does not talk about being a badass. Period.
2. Second rule of being a badass, a badass does not try to be a badass or look t
Trisha Harrington
I just loved this book so much. Surviving Elite High is an amazing YA mm romance. It has everything I enjoy. Teens finding love, drama and coming of age. All of this and by the end we have a proper couple. John H. Ames wrote a great book for young adults and I found myself getting wrapped up in the book.

When I started reading this book I was excited. It had so many great reviews and the fact it was YA excited me even more. Not many authors do well with YA mm romance, but this was one of the best
Jun 22, 2012 Dallison rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All I want to know is, WHEN IS BOOK 2 COMING OUT!
This book received so many great reviews, people on my friend list loved it and I was hearing great chatter about it on a M/M Romance discussion group. I purchased it with high hopes, sure I was about to read something special.

I made it 27% in and threw it in my 'Didn't finish pile'. I don't know how this got published. Initially, I could see where the author was going: he did a great job setting up John's character, setting the environment, and taking out the main character's mother in a believ
Alex Akira
Jul 04, 2012 Alex Akira rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Captivating and immediately relatable, I really enjoyed this engaging coming of age, gay fiction novel. (I truly want to give it four and a half stars, leaving the final half star for this promising new authors next effort, which I'm certain I'll purchase.) A stimulating debut work, the authors writing is sure and very accessible, yet has its own arresting style.

I found myself slipping inside of the skins of the two lead characters very easily. The relationships between the two high schoolers a
Feb 08, 2013 Kim rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't even get through the first chapter. I have read MANY m/m books that have great character development, writing style and a fascinating plot. This was not one of them. From the very beginning the stereotypes were slapping me in the face. The main character acted like the weakest female version of sailor moon that I have ever seen. Good lord. Being gay does not mean you have to be a crying, clinging, pathetic weakling every 5 seconds. A person can be insecure and intimidated without ...more
Jun 25, 2012 Myoregon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I always enjoy the Jock/Nerd GBLT Genre, even though some people say it's been over done. Frankly, I find it hard to find many published books on this topic. John has done a wonderful job on his first book. I fell in love with the antagonist, John, and my heart just broke for him from the treatment he got from the "Jocks". I warmed up to Nick as the book progressed (which is expected since he's one of the "Jocks". The supporting characters were great too. Madison had me cracking up often. I ...more
Renee Howell
Jun 29, 2012 Renee Howell rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-m
I have to say that when this book was recommended to me I thought just another teen book but BOY was I in for a surprise. I loved this book it had drama, tears, friendship and happiness. A book well written and kept me reading from beginning to end. My question to you Mr. Ames is when can I get book 2!!! I can't wait looking forward to it.
This book was TERRIBLE (yes, in capital letters!). I cannot for the life of me understand how this got the ratings and reviews that it did.

Three things make a good book: writing, story and characters. This book could not pull off any of these.

For one, the writing is extremely choppy. There is no flow to the words and though I don't really mind, I have to wonder if it's been edited at all.

Then, the story is atrocious. (view spoiler)
Apr 23, 2012 Nick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’m one of the few who had the opportunity to read this novel beforehand. At first I was like, “Here we go, another cliché story with very cliché characters.” BUT I was wrong. There is more to each character than meets the eyes. Nick is not the egocentric a****** that every thinks, Allison is not the cheerleader slut that I met in high school, Jacob is not the psychotic bully that he portrays, Madison is not the typical slut and Kitty is not the saint that she claims to be (Kitty is hiding a big ...more
Mandy*reads obsessively*
Jul 27, 2012 Mandy*reads obsessively* rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mandy*reads obsessively* by: Vio to review this book?
I liked a lot of it, it was a sweet tale of John and his struggles, financially, bullying, coming to terms with his sexuality and unrequited love.
Nick was a paradox, but hey he's a teenager, I guess that's the norm.
They both seemed at times very mature and then very naive and immature.
All that said, I felt it was maybe a bit ' too much ' story for me.
(view spoiler)
Jul 03, 2012 L'marie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was worried about all the tears, but I relaxed once I realized that John was just a very sensitive person. I was kind of skeptical of Nick. I kept thinking he was going to morph into a d-bag any second. Well, he already was a d-bag...just didn't want him to be one with John. I really liked John &amp; Nick together. There was one part of the story that almost made me stop reading because I was so worked out in the end. The two female BFF's were really sweet. I didn't get sick of ...more
Jul 08, 2012 Meggie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really well created story of Young Adults in an Elite High School. The main storyline circles around newly developed romance between John and Nick. Their story begins with tutoring, develops to true friendship and turns toward sweet first true love. Here we have a lot of dramatic even tragic moments and realistic aspect of bulling. Every character which was created in this story was real and interesting.
I definitely RECOMMEND this story to everyone.
This was a very fun read. There were times I burst out laughing and there were times my heart broke. I would totally recommend.
N to the A
Dec 01, 2012 N to the A rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm sorry to say, but there was just not anything good about this book. The writing was downright bad. It was awkward and clichéd, there was no life in it - and some of what those teenagers said! No one speaks like that, and certainly not high school kids.
The characters were too square and simple, without any kind of nuance - you didn't really feel with them. The main character constantly broke down, but instead of feeling sympathetic for his pain, I merely became annoyed with him, because the
Aug 17, 2012 Denise rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a big fan of nerd/jock stories so this book moved me into the right places. The characters were likable. It definitely had a disney element to it. It's not really angsty and it left some questions that are literally begging for a sequel.

The star of this book for me is Madison. She had me laughing out loud most of the time. Nick was frustrating especially in the earlier parts. A total "badass", his alpha male attitude with all the beating up and candid remarks made me go "Madison" a few time
Anthony Langford
I wanted to like this book more than I did, but it has a lot of problems, mostly do to the characters. The lead character cried way too much, and in nearly every situation. It was just hard to believe a guy would cry so often and he did it so much it took me out of the story at times. Second, there are many unbelievable and implausible plot twists. And some things that are just all too convenient to make things work out for the characters. OTOH, I liked it enough to keep reading and I'll even ...more
Aug 21, 2012 Vivien rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Never have I thought that i was to read a gay book that was situated in high school!. it was really awesome and im looking for more books on high school bromance! have any recommendation? Well wait, this was an awesome weak and strong point of boys, i love that Nick came through all of his issues and still got to be with John and I don't slightly like John for not even pursuing the relationship it was like he just got in with the flow and not declared his undying love for Nick XD, Nick lost a ...more
Jen Wilson
Jul 07, 2012 Jen Wilson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book. I really like John and Nick.
Jun 28, 2012 Joy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, m-m
Story about a poor, gay, bullied teenager who can barely afford his expensive "Elite High" education, and ends up tutoring a rich, popular, attractive football player for his school fees. This reminded me a bit of Jeff Erno's first book--the writing is kind of stilted in the same way--but with over-the-top melodrama. This could have been much better had the characters been more likable, but they were mostly just 1-dimensional and annoying.
Melanie Broyles
Dec 31, 2012 Melanie Broyles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This story was just adorable! It's about a boy who is just on the brink of admitting to himself and others that he is gay. The boy falls in love with the most popular jock in school and experiences his first love, his first heart break, and together they even survive a horrendous act of violence. I look forward to reading more of this author's future work.
Jul 19, 2012 Azusa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: faves
I loved this book. I am fond of most books like this actually. I enjoyed it so much that i was disappointed when i came to the end of the book. i was actually wondering if there was going to be a sequel to Surviving Elite High because i would love to know what happens to Nick and John.
It was sweet...well, not the bullying, I meant the relationship between MCs...I just couldn´t really connect to the characters...but I probably will read the sequel because I want to know how their story continues
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My real name is Juan H. Alvarado and I was born in El Salvador, C.A. I currently live in Belize and my passions are writing, reading and spending time with the ones I love. I began writing in 2009. After posting some of my work on an internet website and receiving positive feedback, I went on to write several full-length novels under my penname, John Henry Ames. My first completed series is the ...more
More about John H. Ames...

Other Books in the Series

Surviving Elite High (4 books)
  • Senior Year (Surviving Elite High, #2)
  • Loving James (Surviving Elite High, #3)
  • Surviving Elite High: The Next Generation (Surviving Elite High, #4)

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“Nick leaned in and our lips met. It really was an out-of-body experience. I had never felt that shocking feeling that starts in your lips, travels throughout your entire body and rests in your heart.” 16 likes
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