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The Ridge

(Amanzimtoti #1)

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4.06  ·  Rating details ·  79 ratings  ·  53 reviews
Set in Amanzimtoti, South Africa, the story follows Wayne du Preez as he starts his matric. Completing his final year of high school won’t be his only problem, however, when a boy from his childhood makes a surprise reappearance in small town Toti, throwing Wayne’s picket-fence dreams with girlfriend Jess into a tailspin and forcing him to deal with a part of himself he’s ...more
ebook, 252 pages
Published March 14th 2016 by Paper Wolf Publishing
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4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  79 ratings  ·  53 reviews


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Chesca
“He tried to tell himself he didn’t care. ”


Actual rating: 4.5 stars
A copy was kindly provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.


I NEED THE NEXT BOOK NOW!!

The Ridge blew me away. It is such a wonderful debut that has a pure heart in its center. Very lovely and fresh, but also overwhelming, it gave me the feeling of being taken by huge crashing waves and sinking deeper in the waters.

This is the kind of story wherein you want to get inside it to help the protagonist because it’s
...more
Nelou Keramati
Feb 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
***I received a free ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

What an incredibly brave debut! Carmen Shea Hepburn has taken on a subject matter most authors shy away from. This novel in a very rich exploration of the human psyche. It is not a fast-pace, action-packed kind of story. It is contemplative, inquisitive, dark, and brutally honest. It is the story of a young man named Wayne who finds himself thrown into a wild tailspin upon the sudden return of his former best friend, Kyle. A
...more
enqi ☁️✨ [joon's]
DISCLAIMER: I received this book on a free read-to-review basis from the author, Carmen-Shea Hepburn. Many thanks to her for giving me the opportunity to read and review her book. This does not in any way affect my review, opinion(s) or final rating.

This book left me a little uneasy.

It's dark, but not dark enough to be truly unsettling. It's raw, but not raw enough to be emotional. I want to applaud Carmen-Shea Hepburn for venturing out of the lines of conventionality and bravely telling a rat
...more
Sandra (LadyGrey Reads)
2016 Book Awards
description
(more information about these awards on my blog)

I received a free copy of this book from author Carmen-Shea Hepburn in exchange for an honest review.

description

Oh.
My.
God.

This book. This book! Gods, it f*cked me up.
I wasn't sure what to expect from this book, but I liked the brief summary I got and I was like "yeah, cool, this will be a good book to read after work, just relaxing, an easy read". Boy, was I wrong - and in a good way!

This book follows Wayne, who lives in Amanzimtoti in South
...more
Tex Reader
3.0 of 5 stars – Good Gay YA At Start, But No Development.
[Thanks to the author for a free copy via Goodreads' YA LGBT group in exchange for an honest review]

I love various gay genres, including YA romance, and this was an enjoyable enough read; yet it still left me wanting more (so it was not a standalone).

Carmen-Shea Hepburn’s style was straightforward, easy-to-read and descriptive of the setting, which I enjoyed travelling to via her book. For example, there were nice descriptions of all the
...more
Bárbara
Aug 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
-I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review-

The actual rating is 4.3 stars, because I'm an annoying kind of special snowflake and I tend to use the full spectrum, instead of getting to limit myself to the wholes and the .5's. Bear with me.


This book was simply spectacular. Make no mistake, it's not spectacular because it's all sunshine, lollipops and raibows. It actually wasn't, really. What it was, it's heartbreaking. It was brutal. It was raw and honest and emotional, also
...more
Andreja
The kiss was harder than he was used to, the angle stranger as he tilted his head upwards under the guidance of Kyle’s palm, the brush of his stubble a delicious friction against Wayne's bottom lip as he pressed in again and again, unable to get enough of the taste of his mouth.
description
This book is going to be hard to review, because it deals with the inner workings of a really messed up boy and his inability to face the hard truth he’s been avoiding for almost 10 years. I did not expect for this book t
...more
abi
Apr 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely adored this book! What a wonderful, enthralling debut that captures teen angst and the weight and confusion of romantic inclinations and identity.

Amanzimtoti: The Ridge follows Wayne du Preez, as he starts his last year of high school with his best friend Travis and his girlfriend Jess, and is confronted by the sudden and unexpected reappearance of his childhood best friend, which leaves him with him exploring an unhealthy inner turmoil of feelings.

Once I got a few chapters into th
...more
Sophia
May 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
“He didn’t think he’d ever felt this terrified. This exposed and vulnerable.”

When I received an ARC from the author I was beyond excited to start reading, because the plot summary on Goodreads just grabbed me. I needed to read this. And read it I did…in one sitting. My emotions for this book are hard to put into words, because it swept me up in a way I wasn’t expecting.

Whenever I read YA contemporaries, I know I’ll either get the cute boy meets girl scenario or the more serious coming of age
...more
Di
I received a free copy of this ebook in exchange for an honest review.

Review also available on my Blog: Book Reviews by Di

Firstly some trigger warnings: Self harm and references to child abuse. Generally I would say this book is for mature audiences only - there is quite a lot of strong language, some violence and also casual use of alcohol and drugs.

Amanzimtoti: The Ridge is a coming-of-age novel centred around Wayne Du Preez who, at the beginning of the book, is about to embark on his final
...more
Jennifer Oliveira
*review of a received advanced copy*

Wayne is about to start his matric year, which I think is equivalent to the senior year or last year of highschool, alongside his girlfriend Jessica and her twin brother, his best friend, Travis. On the first day of school a new boy arrives in town, Kyle aka his childhood friend and the boy who had kissed him all those years ago. Of course, this arrival is bound to interfere with what he had planned for his last year before everything changes.

Wayne lives in Am
...more
Keihi
Sep 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Let me be perfectly clear - I did not know what to expect when I opened this book. And it might seem like a hard book to like, because it's not a feel-good reading, but it's heavy, feel-a-lot kind of a story. (Which was, for some reason, unexpected).

I got hooked from the first pages - both because I simply love books with glossaries in them (where else would I get the opportunity to learn some Afrikaans slang?), and because I reall
...more
Teresa
May 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Title: Amanzimtoti: The Ridge
Author: Carmen-Shea Hepborn
Publisher: Carmen-Shea Hepburn
ISBN: B01CBBGS1U
Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01C...
Reviewer: Teresa Fallen Angel
Blurb:
I received a free ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
Amanzimtoti 1
Set in Amanzimtoti, South Africa, the story follows Wayne du Preez as he starts his matric. Completing his final year of high school won’t be his only problem, however, when a boy from his childhood makes a surprise reappearance
...more
Carmen-Shea Hepburn
Feb 25, 2016 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Amanzimtoti is a story that has been with me for what feels like half a lifetime, dogging my dreams and waking hours for years before I finally decided to put pen to paper and tell the story of a young man struggling to accept a sexual orientation he's spent his entire life believing was wrong.

It's always nerve-wracking to share something that is so deeply personal, and means so very much to you as an author, with the rest of the world; opening yourself to critique and judgement from a sea of f
...more
Brown Eyed Girl ~Suzanne~
3.75 stars

The story spent a lot of time in Wayne's head. It's definitely angsty but I thought it went a bit overboard. I have children the age that Wayne and Kyle were when they first kissed. That seems awfully young. My boys don't have any inclination to kiss anyone, they are still children. I would've believed it more if Wayne was closer to 11 or 12.

I felt bad for Kyle. He got blamed for the first kiss and the the next two! Plus I'm super confused over Wayne's feelings for Jessica. I was a bi
...more
Shaztwirl
Mar 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
The last third of this book really saved it. I must confess that by halfway through I was considering skimming through to the end. I was bored. But then, things got rolling (things including my tears)! Wayne is an incredibly complex character to have written and while we may all have come across many characters just beginning to accept or struggling to accept their sexuality, I don't think you will find a struggle better laid down on paper than Wayne's. For this alone I added an extra star to my ...more
Christy
Mar 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
I was given an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
When the boy that Wayne Du Preez shared his first kiss with arrives back in his hometown, Wayne has to question his entire life.
As the book goes on and the story gets going the writing style and voice of the book start to come into their own rather than sounding like someone else’s voice.
A different story than most of the books I have read over the past few years and I am excited to read the next book in the series!
A video version
...more
Jhavon
Jun 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
(my original review was accidentally deleted, so this is a rewrite as close as I could get to what I remember!)

Easily one of my favorite books so far this year!

The Ridge is a story at times both heartwrenching and heartwarming, and covers the story of Wayne, in his final year of high school, when a childhood friend comes back into town, and all the drama associated with his return as Wayne struggles with what last happened between them all those years ago.

I especially admire Carmen-Shea Hepburn
...more
Jade Diamond
Dec 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this in exchange for an honest review.

Amanzimtoti: The Ridge follows a 17-year-old South African boy, Wayne du Preez, as he starts his last year of high school with his best friend Travis and his girlfriend Jessica. On the first day of school a new boy arrives in town Kyle, Wayne’s Childhood friend and the boy who had kissed him all those years ago, which leaves him with him exploring an unhealthy inner turmoil of feelings. This boy has returned to Toti and has brought his c
...more
Hannes Jooste
May 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is an absolute gem. I'm an avid reader of LGBT fiction and out of everything I have read in this genre, The Ridge is something unique.

I have never written a book review before. I guess I should state upfront that I myself am South African, male, and gay - so I am bound to be invested in this particular story. (right?)

I feel I must make some small contribution, or at least add an opinion to the slice of life offered to us by the author. Here goes...

Firstly, Wayne's story resonates very
...more
Charlotte
Mar 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Charlotte by: free copy sent for impartial review purposes
On her website, Carmen-Shea Hepburn describes herself as 'writer: in wanderlust'. And it shows. This is a writer for whom place is just as important as plot, and her love of travel sings through the narrative. This mixture of stories on the micro, human scale, combined with the greatness of landscapes is surely one of the main things that I will carry away with me from this book. I have never been to South Africa, let alone visited Hepburn's hometown where this story is set, but I have such a cl ...more
Okuta Otherside
Aug 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaway
I got this book from Goodreads giveaway and i really enjoy this book SO MUCH! First, I want to say thank you for the author, Carmen-shea Hepburn for send this book all the way to my hand and give me chance to read her debut book. I'm so glad that i won your book, it's still fresh in my memory how excited i am when i received and unboxing the package.
First things that i need to say about this book: THIS BOOK IS AWESOME! I love the characters, the story and the settings, it's fresh because i neve
...more
Lina
Oct 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-m
This story had a lot going for it. It sucked me in immediately, and I literally couldn't put it down. I really cared about the characters and what happened to them. Fair warning, though, it's dark. Things go down a dark spiral for Wayne and never really climb back up. I can handle a fair amount of angst, but I do need a light at the end of the tunnel. Wayne's saving graces are his best friends, who bolster him with an endless supply of love and support. It was really beautiful to witness their f ...more
Claudia
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I live for YA. Remember that feeling that no one in the history of Humanity has ever felt as deep and as intense as you have? This book captures that perfectly and it's as annoying as it seems. This is half a story. Maybe chopping the internal struggle by half in both books could've delivered a decent story. But as it is, this is just dragging angst for the benefit of writing two books.
Johan Botha
Feb 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Surprisingly well written. The majority of the book deals with the main character fighting his own internal demons.
Hadley
Oct 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e10000
This book is intense!
I love that it is based in my country, South Africa and Amanzimtoti is only an hour away from where I live so I was able to identify with the setting.
Lou~Silver Medalist in DNF's
DNF @ 8%

Having reached up to Chapter 4 (aka 8%) and the most significant event to have occurred was a teenager remembering a kiss from 8 years earlier, I can make the fairly safe assumption it's going to be a painfully slow-paced read.

Not for me.
Lex
Sep 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
*I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.*

Sooo… I thought it will be an ordinary YA, LGBT love story, the kind where friends becomes lovers. The blurb says nothing about child abuse, self harm, depression and panic attacks. I think there should be a warning label. I didn't have much of a problem with them but they might bring out some bad memories for others. Anyway, it was very different from what I expected ‘cause Wayne’s problems have more of a role in the book
...more
Reed
May 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book is one of the best books I've ever read and as such this review took me forever to write cuz I wasn't sure how to put into words how amazing this book is. Hopefully I do it justice.

I feel like the main premise of this 1st book in the series is to get the readers to understand how Wayne's mind works, his relationship with the twins, his past relationship with Kyle, his uncontrollable attraction to Kyle now and the turmoil that comes along with it. When the book ended I was left with mul
...more
Alex
Aug 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
I received a free ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

This book was a rollercoaster of emotions. From good things, to bad things, to being just as confused as Wayne. And the cycle repeated.

Honestly, the story made me feel a lot of empathy for Wayne even when his life is way different than mine. I will agree that I could relate to some of his characteristics quite a lot though.

Wayne is a simple guy, with very few friends, a girlfriend of two years, and a terrible relationship wit
...more
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Carmen-Shea is a half-South African, half-Scottish hybrid with the confused accent to go with it.

A child of two countries, she’s never quite been able to settle in one place for very long and has only just returned to the UK after spending the past two-and-a-half years backpacking her way around Australia, and the gorgeous Middle Earth (that’s New Zealand for the uninitiated!).

She’s been a writer
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Amanzimtoti (2 books)
  • Inyoni Rocks (Amanzimtoti, #2)