Title: A Taste of Agapi
Author: Chris Ethan
Publisher: Amazon/Kindle Unlimited
Length: 278 Pages
At a Glance: A Taste of Agapi is a slow burn story with lukewarm characters. It’s a light read and if you have no ties to the country it takes place in, you might even enjoy it. Just, please, don’t base your image of Greece on this book.
Reviewed By: Ky
Blurb: Jimmy has a secret. But when he meets Ren, he can no longer hide it.
Ren is an adventurous comic-book nerd. He transfers to Thessaloniki, Greece in an attempt to find his place in the world. What he gets is more than just an escape from his academic family.
Jimmy is a hard working man. After losing his mother, he has put his heart and soul into finishing his studies and helping his dad through his financial difficulties. When he is introduced to Ren, Jimmy initiates him into the coffee-and-chill culture of his Greek city.
But something awakens in both of them.
Something neither can tame.
Can the two boys be more than just friends?
And what is that feeling called? That feeling they can’t seem to shake off?
Review: I’m beyond frustrated with this book! Who knew that we are homophobic? Who knew that we are bullies? Who knew that we don’t accept anyone different from us? Who knew that parents here ask their kids to work all day long to help them with their finances? Who knew that it’s a reason to laugh at someone because they don’t speak English well enough? Not me, that’s for sure! Thankfully, this book fell into my hands, and it opened my eyes about the kind of people we are. I didn’t abandon it because I was curious about what other new thing I was about to learn about my country, my culture and my world.
It turns out everyone—but Jimmy and his friends, of course—in Greece is a bully waiting around the corner to harass Ren, take his money and do him wrong. Huh, I learn new things every day. Apparently, I live in a negative community, just one step up from some Eastern countries where women have no rights. At least we do have some over here despite how backwards we are.
Are you sensing my sarcasm in this whole review? This book made me see red at times. It was stereotyping every Greek person and putting everyone in the bully/homophobe/xenophobe box.
Okay, rant time is over, let’s talk about the plot. A Taste of Agapi is a slow burn story with lukewarm characters, and I couldn’t feel their connection. The events span over a semester where Ren went as an Erasmus student to Thessaloniki. There he met his “Erasmus buddy” Dimitris (or Jimmy, so Ren would find it easier to pronounce) and the rest of his friends. There was the typical going around and seeing places so Ren could really get to know the city and have a taste of what Greece is like. I don’t think that happened, though, as you can guess—see rant above. Anyway, the book tries to give the reader a feel about what Greece is like, but it was over the top half the time, and the other half, it was offensive and prejudiced. It’s a light read and if you have no ties to the country it takes place in, you might even enjoy it. Just, please, don’t base your image of Greece on this book.
Needless to say, I won’t be reading any more books by this author. Yes, my reasons are completely subjective, and I don’t care one little bit about it!
You can buy A Taste of Agapi here:
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