To say that young love was hard work would be the understatement of the century. As with most books I read, I tackled this one in one sitting. Pitch is a bittersweet love story between high school students Taylor and Jackson. It looks familiar from the outset, Taylor is no one, Jax is a jock, but Parkinson took the traditional formula and bent it into a far more unexpected tale.
I found the voice of our protagonist, Taylor to be really relatable. His words and observations, the feelings he displays, they are all angst and confusion, and it’s totally befitting for the character. Since the story is told solely from his perspective, we see the world Parkinson has created through Taylor’s eyes alone, which I think gives us a really good understanding of the boy that Taylor is, however sometimes this works to the detriment of other character development.
For someone so pivotal to the story, I feel like we never really see much of Jackson’s personality come through. His delivery is a little two-dimensional and the only time we really get up close and personal with him, he reels off a string of dialogue that fills in all the questions we’ve been asking ourselves, but it doesn’t really seem to make his character more appealing, which I think damaged the sympathy the reader is to feel when events take a tragic turn.
This is not to say that Parkinson doesn’t completely make up with this with his character of Kevin, the stories antagonist, and what a bad guy he is! Where most YA books in this genre try to tackle homophobia, Parkinson opted full frontal assault on jealousy, and the outcome was really powerful. Kevin’s character is both complicated and unwavering, never looking for forgiveness and never showing one sign of redemption. And it made for fantastic reading.
The supporting characters all really shone through to boot. Everyone and their mum couldn’t help but fall for the gentle giant Benny, and though she started off an obstacle, the character of Becca really came into her own as the story progressed. The complicated character of Addy was also a delight to read and the final outcome of the story really packed a powerful punch in regards to where these characters ended up.
Overall, I’d say Parkinson really delivered on this story, giving us up’s and downs, the inside and the out and the good and the bad all in equal measures. It is fully deserving of its Goodread’s average of 3.7 stars out of 5, and I look forward to reading more from this rising star. And I want more Benny, let’s face it, how can you not just love him?
This book was released in Paperback and eBook format on Harmony Ink on the 8th August. To pick up your copy head to this link: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4078
You can also keep up to date with Will Parkinson by visiting his site at: http://willparkinson.com/wordpress/
Or follow him on twitter: @WillParkinsonau