Happy Book Birthday to Why Can’t Relationships Be Like Pizza by Andy V. Roamer! Today is my stop on the Gay Book Promotions Book Tour celebrating the release of the third book in The Pizza Chronicles series!
The books in the Pizza Chronicles series follow the main character, RV, through his high school years, as he tries to answer his many questions about life, God, prayer, sexuality, being the son of immigrants, and staying loyal to his heritage while carving out his own life and relationships.
Overall Heat Rating for the series: 1 flame. The stories should be read in the following order:
Book 1: Why Can’t Life Be Like Pizza?
Book 2: Why Can’t Freshman Summer Be Like Pizza?
Book 3: Why Can’t Relationships Be Like Pizza?
New Release today, 15 March 2021: Why Can’t Relationships Be Like Pizza?
In Why Can’t Relationships Be Like Pizza?, RV begins sophomore year in high school, though his relationships create more questions than answers.
RV is trying to maintain his newfound friendship with Bobby, but it’s becoming harder and harder. Bobby seems a different, more distant, person. RV’s friend Carole is distracted with the ups and downs in her relationships with the French boyfriends she met during her summer in Paris. RV’s new friend Mark is focused on his family’s troubles. School is a mixed bag. But Mr. Aniso, RV’s former teacher and mentor, is there to lean on, especially when near tragedy strikes and RV needs Mr. Aniso’s counsel to stay strong and provide help where it’s needed most.
Excerpt from Why Can’t Relationships Be Like Pizza?
“Hey, RV! Long time no see.”
“Can I sit down?”
This was the school lunchroom, not Joe’s Pizza, but it was still nice to be sitting there with Bobby. It feels like ages since we’ve had any time together. Another one of the Big Guy’s tricks? Last year Bobby was my Biology partner. I got to know him and really like him. And I think he liked me. This year I hardly ever see him. Even at lunch. I know he’s busy on the varsity football team, but that excuse is getting pretty old. So, are we not supposed to like each other anymore? Is that what you’re telling me, Big Guy?
I tried to push the Big Guy out of mind and concentrate on Bobby. He asked me how I was doing.
“Fine,” I said. “How are you doing?”
Bobby and I sat there in silence for a bit. “How’s football?” I asked, just to keep the conversation going.
Bobby started telling me about the game last week. He was excited because he caught a long pass for a touchdown.
“That’s great!” I said.
“Yeah. My first varsity touchdown for Latin!”
I raised the can of Coke I was drinking. “Go Bobby! Here’s to more touchdowns!”
“Thanks.” Bobby raised the soda he was drinking, and we clinked cans.
“I’m really happy for you,” I said. “Latin’s hero.”
“Thanks,” Bobby said again, though I could see he was a little embarrassed by my compliments.
Was he blushing? Remembering what had happened in the woods, I had a sudden urge to touch his face. I wondered if Bobby would ever let me do that again.
There was another small moment of silence as Bobby looked away from me and focused on his sandwich. “So, what’s new with you?” he asked, still chewing on his food.
“Nothing much,” I answered. “I’m studying hard, waiting for my PSAT scores, trying to stay out of trouble.” I told him about the Halloween party. “I wish you’d been there. We had a great time.”
“Yeah, I heard.” Bobby looked away again. “I—I was tired. Practice takes a lot of out of me, so I need to rest.”
“Yeah, I guess it does.”
“Sorry I wasn’t there though. It sounds like it was good.”
“Yeah, it was.” I told him about what Mr. Felucci said. That the teachers would help us out with anything we were doing on climate change.
Bobby nodded. “That’s great.”
Why did I get the feeling Bobby was just nodding to agree with me? That his mind was on other things and he didn’t care one way or the other what I was saying?
We were silent again. Bobby finished his sandwich, cleaned up his area, and stood up suddenly. “Gotta go, RV. I’m late. Nice to catch up with you.”
“Yeah. Good to catch up.”
“See you soon.” He turned back around as he was leaving. “At another game maybe?”
And he was gone.
I felt more and more depressed as he walked away. I’ve never spent any time with Bobby that felt so awkward. Not knowing what to say to each other? When did that happen to Bobby and me? What did it mean?
Something definitely has changed in our friendship. And it makes me very sad. And I don’t know what to do about it. I suppose Mr. Aniso would tell me I need to talk to Bobby. Do I have the guts to do that? What would I say? And what would Bobby say back? Just thinking about that gets me so scared.
Read my full review here: Why Can’t Relationships Be Like Pizza?
Nine Star Press | Amazon US | Amazon UK
Check out the first two books in The Pizza Chronicles Series as well:
Why Can’t Life Be Like Pizza?
In Why Can’t Life Be Like Pizza? RV begins freshman year at demanding Boston Latin School, doing his best to keep up and fit in while wrestling with his immigrant heritage and his sexuality.
Wrestling with his sexuality, along with a lot of other things, RV thinks all is okay when he starts going out with Carole. But things get more complicated when RV develops a crush on Bobby, a football player in his class, who admits he may have gay feelings, too. Bobby is African American and facing his own pressures. Luckily, RV develops a friendship with Mr. Aniso, his Latin teacher, who is gay and always there to talk to when the pressure becomes overwhelming.
Read my full review here: Why Can’t Life Be Like Pizza?
NineStar Press | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Add on Goodreads
Why Can’t Freshman Summer Be Like Pizza?
In Why Can’t Freshman Summer Be Like Pizza? RV and Bobby have survived freshman year and are looking forward to spending a wonderful summer together. But life has other plans.
RV and Bobby’s summer is not what they wish for. They hardly have time to spend with each other. Bobby is busy at football camp and working at a job his father has pressured him into taking. RV is busy with a summer job, too, and also has to help his parents pass their U.S. citizenship test. His friend Carole jumps at the chance to spend her summer in Paris. As always, Mr. Aniso, RV’s Latin teacher is there to talk to when RV gets too lonely. He’s also there when RV inadvertently spills one of Bobby’s secrets, and Bobby is so angry at him RV is afraid he’s ready to cut off the friendship.
Read my full review here: Why Can’t Freshman Summer Be Like Pizza?
Nine Star Press | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Add on Goodreads
About the Author
Andy V. Roamer grew up in the Boston area and moved to New York City after college. He worked in book publishing for many years, starting out in the children’s and YA books division and then wearing many other hats. This is his first novel about RV, the teenage son of immigrants from Lithuania in Eastern Europe, as RV tries to negotiate his demanding high school, his budding sexuality, and new relationships. He has written an adult novel, Confessions of a Gay Curmudgeon, under the pen name Andy V. Ambrose. To relax, Andy loves to ride his bike, read, watch foreign and independent movies, and travel.
Connect with Andy V. Roamer
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Follow the tour and check out the other blog posts and reviews here!