Read Something Like Lightning by Jay Bell Online


Never stop running. No matter how often life trips you up, or how many times your enemies knock you down, just get up and keep on moving until you find where you belong. Kelly Phillips has been out and proud since he was a young teenager, and thanks to the gay youth group he frequents, he's never been short on friends or lovers. But when you have almost everything, it's haNever stop running. No matter how often life trips you up, or how many times your enemies knock you down, just get up and keep on moving until you find where you belong. Kelly Phillips has been out and proud since he was a young teenager, and thanks to the gay youth group he frequents, he's never been short on friends or lovers. But when you have almost everything, it's hard not to focus on what's just out of reach: A best friend, who would be Mr. Right if he wasn't already Mr. Straight. Or that handsome athlete at school, who would be easier to wrangle if not for his angel wings. And then there's the guy who might be a perfect fit, maybe even a soulmate... if only he wasn't convinced he didn't need anyone. Kelly has always been good at running. Now he must learn to chase, which will not only test his endurance, but the durability of his heart as well. Something Like Lightning is a new beginning in the Something Like... saga, shifting the focus to a different set of characters while also revisiting a familiar face or two....

Title : Something Like Lightning
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781500831950
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 363 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Something Like Lightning Reviews

  • Breann
    2019-03-24 08:50

    I could talk about this book for daaaaaaaayyyyyys and I have so many things highlighted that I want to share with the world, but that would mean I'd spoiler all over the place. SLL is one of those where I feel like everything I say will be a spoiler because so much happens to Kelly and the book goes in unexpected directions. I'd hate to take away from a readers experience, so I'm going to try and be as spoiler-free as I can.Going in I was worried. Worried because Kelly was such a stinking twathead in Spring. For serious, how can I read a whole book about this guy who was rude, bitchy and fought about everything. How? But I did, and I fell so in love with his fight! "Too black. Too gay. Too fucking fast to lose this race! Kelly was going to own this."Yeah, I kind of love him. He has this confidence that I adore, but this fight inside of him just wouldn't let him quit. Anything. So much that he's willing to suffer through a relationship that just wasn't working. Don't get me wrong, there were some seriously adorable moments and they were too cute in the beginning. But neither one was in the wrong, they were just incompatible and I loved how it was portrayed. It takes some great writing for me to be ok with my hero having a hurt heart. But there was no enemy here, just two guys who simply could not make it work. Kelly fought for it anyway because that's just what he did. He needed someone to match him. And he found him. *dreamy sigh* Oh my, he so found him.So here's the boyfriend that makes Kelly's heart go pitter-patter:"While you're at it, send your boss over here. Better yet, have him bring us our food, because if he can't bother hiring competent staff, then he needs to get off his lazy ass and do the work himself."Yup. That's the new guy yelling at a server. And Kelly effing swooned. I loved it. When this scene happened... hook, line, sinker. I was a goner. All this didn't happen until pretty late in the book. Now that's a love story! No 400 pages for them, nope. The chemistry was there and it was turned on high. Even though they were crazy compatible, I was on pins and needles until the very, very end. Why? Why was I made to suffer so? But the epilogue (and the page after) made me grin like an idiot. All's forgiven and now I'm jonesing hard for the next book.I'm not going into many plot points because, again, there are so many. So many struggles Kelly has to face. Heartbreaking struggles that only prove how strong he really is. So much was taken away from him and he dealt with it in the best way he knew how. Now, he definitely made me want to smack him a few (maybe more than a few) times, but, in the end, he proves that being a fighter isn't always a bad thing.Besides my love for Kelly, we were able to revisit some epic scenes from Spring, which was awesome. I was able to reread some of my favorite scenes and I was pleased as punch. Not to mention, Allison! She's so great and an all-time favorite character of mine.I loved it, obvs. Was there any doubt? I didn't think so. It's no secret that I adore this series. This is the series I rec to everyone and the one I compare all others to. Something Like wins every time.

  • Justin
    2019-03-10 05:51

    4.5 starsMy Dearest Jay,I hate you, and then I love you. It's like I want to throwyou off a cliff, then rush to the bottom to catch you. Sincerely, Justin I am so conflicted here. I love Jay Bell’s writing, I love his characters, and I usually love the euphoria I get when I finish one of his books. Not this time. I’m still a little wrung out and that ending makes me want to thump Jay in the forehead. LolBreann nailed it when she said only Jay Bell could make you love a guy like Kelly. No truer words have ever been spoken. I’ll admit that enough time had passed since reading Something Like Spring that I was more than one-third of the way through this one before it all came back to me. It was like a sucker punch to the gut and I raged. I started questioning everything. I was trying to remember details from Spring and almost stopped to re-read it before continuing with Lightning. I'm glad I didn't because when I was able to connect the dots and remember details it broke my heart. I really hurt for Kelly. BAD! I had a completely different reaction in Spring. I don’t know how to proceed without saying too much but seeing things from Kelly’s point of view was definitely an eye opener. And not a pleasant one. It was much easier when I disliked (OK, hated) Kelly in Spring.I struggled with most of the main characters in Lightning. I loved them one minute and hated them the next. HATED THEM! With a white hot passion. This is true for almost every single one of them except Allison. I just plain loved Allison. Again it’s hard to elaborate without spoiling something so you’ll just have to experience the range of emotions for yourself. Some of the characters I was able to forgive, at least somewhat. Others, not so much.The plot here is very intertwined with Something Like Spring. I was expecting this new series to be completely different with brief cameo appearances from characters from some of the other 4 books. I guess on some distant level I knew this was Kelly's story but I didn't expect it to tie so closely with Spring. This one however stays true to the other book in the Something Like series in that there’s a definite connection to at least one other book. In this case it was Spring. Some of the scenes are ones you’ve seen before only now you’re seeing them through someone else's eyes.I knew how I wanted this to end and it was close. In my opinion some things were resolved a little more than necessary and one MAJOR thing was not resolved enough. Damn you again Jay. You're an evil bastard. :)If you like the other Something Like books, you’ll eat this one up like it's your favorite desert. If you’re like me and you’re a Jay Bell fan, you will NOT be disappointed. The writing here is spectacular as is the case with all of Jay's recent writing.Something Like Lightning is not one I’ll soon forget and as much as it pains me to say, I’m looking forward *grumble, grumble* to Something Like Thunder. Asswipe! I love you, JAY! See Breann & Lori's review of Something Like Lightning at:

  • Susan
    2019-03-04 07:45

    3.5 starsI know your game, Jay Bell! I figured you out!You write these characters and you say to the reader, "I dare you to try and like this guy!" The guys are flawed and irritating and impetuous...but you stick the reader with them for years...seeing them through these growing-up phases...making mistakes and finding out how to fix them. And just when the reader wants to give up on them, you show that all of that was just the character being HUMAN and doing their best through LIFE.I didn't always get it, but I do now. I didn't get it with Tim Wyman in your first two Seasons books. But I get it with Kelly Phillips in Something LIke Lightning. I wanted to hate Kelly in the beginning. He was this arrogant teenager. Selfish. Irresponsible with his emotions and the emotions of others. And I worried, yet again, that I'd end up hating a book because I couldn't get behind the main character.But, then it clicked. Kelly was a teeanged boy. And then he was a young man. He was insecure. He was figuring himself out. He was trying to understand love. He was maneuvering through relationships. And that's LIFE. That's the HUMAN experience. And suddenly I didn't hate Kelly...I empathized with him.Jay Bell's ability to tell a story is amazing. He doesn't shy away from detail, from experience, from tragedy, from SHOCKING twists, from heartbreak. He tackles them head-on. And for the reader who goes in without a hardhat, it can be painful. But it feels...real and honest.This book is Kelly's journey...from a young teenager obsessed with his best friend, to an older teen facing crisis and overwhelming obstacles, to an emotionally dependent young man trying to figure out love, to an adult living with physical challenges and being brave with his heart. He's a pain-in-the-ass at times and I wanted to grab him and shake him and yell at him, "What are you doing?" But, I ultimately just wanted him to be...ok. For life to give him a break and allow him it be alright.The cast of chracters from the Seasons series make an appearance, and to be honest, that's where I thought the book was it's weakest. Maybe I'm biased because I don't particularly like those characters. But, it was almost too coincidental how all these same people fell into place in Kelly's story and throughout his life. But, for those of you who love that series, I think you'll enjoy seeing your ol' favorites.Some of the circumstances thrown into the story felt a little contrived at times or maybe a tiny bit unbelievable...but Jay Bell never takes it way over the top and usually is able to save those scenes.For me, this was not your standard run-of-the-mill coming-of-age romance. It's about a boy who becomes a man and finds love in many forms along the way. Also...kudos for having a main character that is a person-of-color. And a strong family support system.

  • ¸. • * ° *❧Gwendolyn❧°**★•°**★
    2019-03-02 06:42

    Look at the release date....It so far away.....what a tease....!I'm sorry, but this is how I feel right now, cuz...I DO NOT HAVE THIS BOOK!Now ,I wait ! Oct 9, 2014 *grumbles*Aww, Kelly :-(I hug you soon...kay....Promise❤️*looks at cover again*Andreas Bell---you are a ---> Tease!'s Oct 9, 2014...and....Got it...and...OMG...- Big Hugs, to Kelly I never warmed up to Natatial? But Wow!I was right, this book /series still has wonderful writing! And, Kelly's did not disappoint ❤️

  • Lori
    2019-03-03 06:49

    Dear lord why do I get talked into these things. Amazing of course. Review previously at BMBR.My experience with this book is slightly different to the other two Unicorns. I have only read Something Like Summer (and am still building up the courage/mending my broken heart to read the next books) therefore I had absolutely no idea of anything that would occur in this book. Let me say this works really well as a standalone, but I can imagine having the background knowledge of the other characters also gives a fantastic - but different - reading experience.Anyone who has toyed with these books knows that they are in for some angst. That their heart is going to be a bit bruised around the edges before the conclusion of the story and this was certainly no exception to that. One of Jay Bell's greatest strengths is his characterisation. Each character is unique and realistic. I really enjoy fully rounded characters, they make reading so much more real and easy to believe. I feel for fully rounded characters more because I believe in them. I really find nothing tropey about any of his characters, they re all flawed, yet I find myself rooting for all of them. Very rarely is there an all out 'bad guy/gal' in his stories.The story - well, the story is like a roller coaster ride. If I'd read Spring, then maybe some of the downhill turns would not have squeezed my insides so much...but it did make the reading experience all the more wonderful. As with the other Something Like books, this story follows the characters over many years, from teens to their twenties (or beyond). With this particular book Kelly is the MC and I loved him. Really, really loved him. As I didn't know anything about his story my heart ached for him at times, yet I admired his spirit. I also admire the author's ability not to just brush over events and make everything suddenly all right - or make it mellow dramatic nonsense.With his relationships, again it was so real - yes, I know I keep using that word, but truly it is apt. The intense feelings a person can have, the ups and downs, the difficult choices and guilt. It's all there in Kelly's life and relationships. Superbly written.The only thing I will say is, I really feel that I need to read the next book now in order to fully understand everything in this book. It's the way his books work - they are all cogs in a bigger book machine and yet we are only seeing one cog at a time, revealing one bit of the story. We may see glimpses of the other cogs as they turn, showing us their story, but I can imagine the full picture will only be available once the entire series is done. So hurry up, get writing Jay, I REALLY need to read Something Like Thunder!I'd also like to comment on the amazing cover art work - it fits the story so perfectly and is really beautiful. I like the fact that these covers are far from typical MM covers. It's a far from typical MM book - it's just a story, whose characters happen to be gay. Yeah, kinda like life really.A copy of this book was given by the author in exchange for an honest review.

  • Trisha
    2019-03-02 08:43

    Nathaniel and Kelly part one. I never thought I would love Kelly's character so much. He has to be my favorite next to Tim Wyman. Once these guys got an opportunity to tell their own stories, we understand where they get their edge and attitude. This installment is SO good, but it leaves us hanging off a cliff at the end there. I'll be back once I read Thunder and hear what Nathaniel has to say for himself. Excited to see his relationship with ceasar (we saw Jason's in Something like Spring) play out, since it is clearly holding him back from loving again. Ta ta for now!

  • Brian
    2019-03-14 10:55

    He did it. Somehow, through the magic of the written word, Jay Bell led me to like Kelly Phillips, one of the characters I disliked the most in Something Like Spring.Welcome to Something Like Lightning, the first book in what's being called the Storms series. It's also the fifth book in the Something Like... universe, and while it brings us back to some familiar faces, it also shifts the reader's focus to those who may have seemed like side characters in the Seasons series.Here, we get to know all about Kelly Phillips, Jason Grant's rival for romance in Spring. Starting before Kelly meets his first serious boyfriend, Lightning examines the sources of Kelly's anger, bitterness, and resentfulness, including a tragedy that shatters dreams and causes serious physical harm. At first, Kelly's bad attitude grated on me, just like it did in Spring, but as Lightning went on, I was moved to feel for him, and then to like and even respect him.I'll be honest -- Kelly is not even close to being my favorite of Jay Bell's characters. After all, how can you compete with Benjamin Bentley? But what I was so impressed with in this book, just like all the Something Like... novels, is how masterfully Jay takes a flawed character and makes you feel things for that fictional person that you thought you'd never feel. This is one of the reasons I've given all the books in this series five stars and why I can't wait for Something Like Thunder.One concluding side note: the only thing that would have made the Something Like... books better is if they had been around when I was in high school and/or college. While they're filled with not-so-perfect characters, tragedy, and heartbreak, Jay's books are also filled with hope and love. That's something that's invaluable to gay youth, and I hope that everyone who can benefit from these novels gets to read them.

  • Riina Y.T.
    2019-03-08 12:10

    Guess What's finally out? YES!I know, right?<<<2 days later >>>So how did you like it?Well, Jay is continuously being awesomely genius. Huh, guess what? I was able to actually like Kelly! Sure he's damn difficult and all, but in the end I kinda felt for him. Wasn't easy being him, although I think, in the future, he needs to change his attitude a little every now and then.It was most exciting to see our old friends again:Tim and his Bentley, Allison and her Ben, Jason and ... well now his William.So, okay, I've got to be honest here; I can't say I really enjoyed seeing Kelly and William together :/ Perhaps that's just me, but I thought they never worked, and since I liked Jason so much I didn't want to think about William with Kelly. Sorry. Really. !!! :(I am looking forward to reading Nathanial's story. I think it'll be one of my favorites! :) Oh the heartache! I can already taste it.I like the guy a lot, and I can't wait to hear his story! Also, I think he and Kelly do make a great pair! I wonder if they'll get it all worked out or if Nathaniel's heart belongs to someone else after all...

  • Anyta Sunday
    2019-03-27 11:50

    Me need NOW!!!!!!!~*~I need to think about this one . . . The writing, of course, is great, because . . . well, Jay Bell!I'm just . . . something.

  • Riley
    2019-02-27 10:58

    I really liked this one, but I didn't love it. I'm not quite sure why. I just never truly warmed up to Kelly as much as I would have liked. I felt for him and admired him throughout the book, but he never really tugged at my heartstrings like some characters do. I did like him & Nathaniel together though, and I'm excited to read more of their story in the next book. Perhaps he will grow on me. ;) This was a touching story, as all Jay Bell's books are. He's a great storyteller and I love his writing. However, he has also written one of my favorite books, Something Like Autumn, from the Seasons series and I inevitably compare all his stories against that one. I can't help it. *shrugs* It just happens. So, while I enjoyed this story, it wasn't Autumn. ;)I'm anxious for Something Like Thunder so we can read Nathaniel's story. I think he might be the broken character I'm looking for. Something really tragic must have happened to him to be in that much pain. Is it wrong that I love that kind of angst and the inevitable hurt/comfort that follows? It's like crack to me. ;) Hopefully we don't have to wait too long. Until then...

  • Brin
    2019-02-28 11:54

    I think Kelly is my new favourite character in this series! I loved getting his story. Full review to follow...

  • Wicked
    2019-03-03 05:46

    With every new installment of this series, I continue to be in awe of Jay Bell's talent for interweaving this story of life. Each book is a different perspective and is so crisp and fresh. This was not my favorite book of the series, as a matter of fact it might be my least favorite and it is still a 4 star story (with 5 star writing). For me, I compare it to not loving a single chapter in another book. I've said it before and I will continue to reiterate it, this is an epic tale with so many layers that it is a disservice to yourself as well as the story to miss any part of. I wouldn't have wanted to miss the character development for anything, even if I didn't love it quite as much as Autumn, Winter, and Spring.

  • Louis A
    2019-03-24 04:50

    What a beautifully written book. As one of many of Bell's fans, I fell in love with the Seasons series. We meet Kelly in Spring and I was not sure what spin was Jay Bell going to offer for main character of Lightening. Bell wove such a wonderful tale of love, pain, loss and joy. It makes me want to read Spring again, but that is OK. With characters and plots like his a re-read is always a pleasure.Go on and start - or continue with the Something Like series…. you will be happy you did.Thank you Jay for taking the time and the effort to produce such works, sometimes it is hard to wait for the next one but your books always show love and dedication.

  • Salsera1974
    2019-02-25 04:41

    I bet you thought you knew Kelly in Something Like Spring. You didn't. This young man is bitchy, feisty, loyal, (eventually!) brave, honest to the bone, a fighter, and worth every second of your time. Read this book.

  • Sasha
    2019-03-05 11:40

    im SO excited to read something like thunder!!!

  • Mark
    2019-03-04 05:08

    “You are sixteen going on seventeen, Baby, it's time to think - lalala!” - OK, if you know the song all together now, 1, 2, 3, 4………. - lol!Seriously now, Kelly is sixteen about to turn seventeen and as you can imagine the hormones and emotional turmoil are all whirring around like a tornado. It’s a time when you fall in love at the drop of a hat, when you normally think you are in love with anyone that shows any interest at all, whether for five minutes or five years. And once you start dating your first guy, you’re head over heels and the declarations of ever undying love, making promises for ever are always on the agenda. Yes, I loved it. It took *00* years off my life! And no I’m not telling you how many – lol!This is what I really love about Jay’s books, he really gets the whole teenager perspective spot-on and takes me back to a time (or in my case feels more like a past life *still not telling* - lol) when the future lays ahead like a big adventure and is out there waiting to be taken. Kelly has always known he is gay and has no problems accepting this, thanks here I guess also go to understanding parents. This was one thing that I found great, to read a book where a family can accept and love their son no matter of his sexuality.He is a tri-athlete and his big dream is to compete in the Olympics, a dream and target to work towards for sure. His best discipline is running and here he excels, not being a runner myself, more a sedate stroller, I was actually left gasping for breath just reading about how this guy could run.The book begins with him having the usual teenage unrequited love or crush issues on a best friend, Jared, who is training with him for the school competition. However, Kelly decides to tell Jared that he is gay and unfortunately this completely backfires on him. Jared can’t deal with Kelly being gay and therefore decides to keep his distance from Kelly to protect his own image. Although Jared remains totally civil it still hurts and I could feel how angry and hurt Kelly was that the great friendship they had before is no more only because Jared is too chicken shit and scared of his own reputation among his peers, i.e. getting the gay stamp. When Kelly tells Jared he’s gay the only comment Jared has is;“Come on , man. It’s bad enough that you’re black.”>- OUCH!! I mean how cruel is that? Double whammy on the insult front. At that point I could have quite happily punched Jared for that comment and as far as I’m concerned he could have totally disappeared from the story right there and then. I know he would have completely dropped out of my life for sure! But then again I think it just shows how immature things still are at that age and teenagers don’t always think before they open their mouths and have to learn through experience. I felt later in the book that Jared had regretted his decision and probably wished he was braver, but at that age peer pressure and image is the all consuming factor.Kelly makes friends with William another tri-athlete and is the competition for Jared and Kelly. Did Kelly do this to get back at Jared? Well, I think that was maybe the initial intention, but things never go according to plan I guess. At first they seem to compliment each other magnificently. William is a strong swimmer, a lot better than Kelly, the other way round Kelly is a much stronger runner than William. Obviously, it makes sense to train together but then it’s not long before the friendship continues off the running track. Kelly is feisty, determined, possibly a little arrogant at times and loses his temper quickly. William is mild mannered, patient, understanding and a real diplomat at heart. Total opposites in many respects and at first it seems they complement each other perfectly.So, do opposites attract? Well, maybe it is true to a certain extent. But what if the opposites are too opposite? Are too far apart on the attraction scale? What feels at first to be like a match made in heaven gradually begins to turn sour soon enough. At the beginning comes the promises of ever undying love and never leaving each other, but someone who is a little more mature in years like yours sincerely secretly knows that they have their whole lives ahead of them and things change. Their characters have yet to be formed and they still have to discover who they really are. So I could read this part of the story with a big, fat, mature grin on my face, finding it all so sweet but knowing this can’t and won’t last. William wants to be nothing more than to join the Coast Guard and Kelly compete in the Olympics. After the initial honeymoon is over, daily routine and life take over and bit-by-bit so does the bickering and bitching. Faults on both sides for sure. Seriously, there were times I could have banged their bloody heads together behaving like the typical kids that they actually are. Never one particular thing, but a number of things culminating in an accident which then robs Kelly of his dream as an Olympic athlete.Oh shit! This was a turn of events. Kelly despite all his outward bravado struck me as actually being quite insecure on the inside, always afraid that William will leave him. Due to the accident Kelly is left quite bitter, who wouldn’t be? And William stays with him out of guilt and a sense of obligation. Now if that isn’t a recipe for disaster from the word go then I don’t know what is. Nothing is meant to last forever especially at this age and eventually William has wandering eyes and with someone new on the scene Kelly’s suspicions of disloyalty soon prove to be founded. However, I felt that Kelly didn’t need to wonder as it was really his behaviour that drove William away. I guess there is nothing worse, no matter what the age, when you suspect your partner is being untrue but can’t prove anything and it’s only a feeling. However, feelings normally always turn out to be correct and this led to a bittersweet breakup that nearly had me in tears. Oh the hurt, this is horrible no matter how old you are.Kelly goes through the usual moping around stage, but like teenagers are they bounce back relatively quickly and through an unforeseen turn of events Kelly now embarks on a career in modelling despite his handicap and becomes very successful. Not the career choice he would have originally thought of for himself, but sometimes in life things never turn out to be the way you intended and sometimes it can be for the better. This is what I also love about Jay’s stories, you are never quite sure in which direction the characters are going to taken by unexpected events, but this keeps the interest and variety for sure. During his modelling he meets Nathaniel who is a little older (early twenties, although from where I’m sitting that’s almost a kid too - lol!) This time everything seems to fit, temperament, outlook on life, character, etc. But Nathaniel is not easy, a little emotionally closeted and needs a bit of working on from Kelly. I loved the way that Kelly chased him and won him over, but Nathaniel has a secret he’s not telling Kelly and no one else, not even the reader, ggrrrrr!!!! Will have to wait for book two I guess to find out what kind of emotional baggage Nathaniel is carrying around with him.Once these two are together, as perfect as things seem to be, Nathaniel has his issues that he doesn't want to tell anyone, not even Kelly, so decides to break things off after a particular event at a party. Now if the first breakup hurt, this one was a massive emotional punch to the gut. Especially after you start to settle down to the idea that these two are maybe really going to make it and are really made for each other. I guess here the old saying, what doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger, comes into play. Well, in Kelly’s case at least it makes him more determined to achieve what he wants in his life anyhow, but the emptiness never really leaves him. I guess that first big love never really leaves your heart, it just finds a place where it can nestle down undisturbed, where it doesn’t hurt anymore, but I know when I think back I also thought I had found the love of my life. Being able to recall these memories I think keeps us all young at heart and that’s another reason why I loved this book so much. Although I wouldn’t change anything now for the world. Not ever!Kelly is a character that invoked mixed feelings in me. From wanting to slap him sometimes for his tantrums and arrogance, basically his immaturity and child like behaviour, to admiring him for his determination and tenacity, to wanting to hold him to make the hurt go away. I found him to be a very multi-faceted character which was in itself for me an intriguing combination. We are taken on Kelly’s emotional ride of highs and lows finishing on maybe a note of hope. Was it a cliff-hanger? Well, I certainly felt that obviously everything has been left open to continue Kelly’s and Nathaniel’s story for sure. Did it make me feel as though I would want to continue the story with them? Well, yes because I’m curious and would like to know how these two get things sorted out and would like to see how Kelly matures with all this emotional turmoil he has been put through. Also I’m sure his modelling career will not be forever, jobs like that are also very fleeting. You’re the top of the pile one month and the next no longer in fashion. So I would like to see where this goes and how Kelly handles this.Jay writes extremely well, bringing emotions to surface in a myriad of characters. He introduces us to Jared, Kelly’s best friend until it all goes wrong, to Kelly’s parents and younger brother who show love as a family the way it should be, William's parents who are the exact opposite of Kelly’s, his best friend Bonnie upbeat with a wonderful sense of humour, Ben who steals William from him, Allison the counsellor, Marcello the photo studio owner and manager, and last but not least Nathaniel who could be Kelly’s real true love. Well, here’s to hoping anyway. Quite a character study in itself. They all play their role in Kelly’s story and are an intricate part of the person he is and has become, all woven really well into the backdrop of Kelly’s world so to speak. Jay has produced a novel once again that for me is well balanced, puts his MCs through their paces in the romance stakes, an extensive plot line that is well thought out spanning several years and many interconnecting events. A very enjoyable read indeed!

  • Anna D.
    2019-03-21 11:04

    There are spoilers here, kind of.If the main couple here is Nathaniel and Kelly, I don’t like the fact that a good chunk of the book was spent during William and Kelly’s relationship. This portion of the book only made me dislike William, Jason, and Kelly for William/Jason’s cheating and for quickly Kelly was able to shrug off the deception.In SLSpring, I really thought William was a good guy and that Kelly was somewhat of a bad guy. I imagined that for Jason to get in between them, both William and Kelly had already emotionally checked out of the relationship. However, reading it from Kelly’s POV, we learn that during that time Kelly was still in love with William and with all his struggles coping with his leg and losing his dreams, William still served as his salvation. They were still sleeping together almost every night for goodness sake and William pretended to still care! LIAR! It was William who checked out and was too chicken shit (masked in nobility) to break it off. I hate that this book changed my opinion of SLSpring. I loved that book (I gave it 5 stars!) but now I want to knock off a couple stars because I feel like I was fooled by the characters. They were portrayed as good but they aren’t. Jason was a boyfriend stealer and William was a cheater, just like his dad. Kelly nailed it on the head when he said “the apple does not fall far from the tree.” Even though they become friends and in good terms in the end, William and Jason are not “good” characters to me anymore. What’s worse is that I even said William gave our beloved Jace a run for his money on the good guy department. Jace was good, through and through. William is just your normal guy posing as “Mother Theresa” when he really is just passive aggressive and it’s this trait that caused the “accident.” Sure it’s easier to like a guy who is calm, polite, and a good boy compared to Kelly who wears his emotion on his sleeve and lashes out, but in the end he’s not better than Kelly. Jace is still the best Jay Bell character – how could I ever doubt that!So Kelly – I couldn’t wait for William to finally be free of him in SLSpring. What Jay Bell did here was really show us that there are two sides to every story. I was able to sympathize with him here, a lot. Even with all that, I’m still not a fan of Kelly..I understand him better but I was not able to embrace him here like I did with the other characters in the series. The second half or maybe the last third of the book felt so different. Kelly becoming a model, and successfully too in what seemed like overnight and moving on to Nathaniel so fast didn’t feel right…and neither did the story fast forwarding a few years. I think the story jumped 4-5 years but when Kelly and Nathaniel met again, they were right back where they left off. 5 years, especially at that age is such a growing time and I can’t imagine these characters not having changed. I’m reading SLL and SLT back to back but if I had to wait for SLT to come out after the ending in this book..I would be pretty upset!The way I feel about the characters hold a large amount of weight to how I react and like a book. Unreasonably so…because however wonderful the story is or how great the writing is, if I don’t like the MCs it really ruins a book for me, especially in romance books. I respect and love this author’s writing, but I’m not thrilled about the characters in this book and that is the real reason for my mediocre rating.Overall, I still enjoyed this book and will continue to read this series but part of it comes from the residual LOVE I have of SLA. Jace’s story rocked my world and it really is in that book that I can’t allow myself to miss out the rest of the series. That and I’m a Jay Bell fan!

  • Joyfully Jay
    2019-03-24 10:47

    A Joyfully Jay review. 4.75 starsSomething Like Lightning is the first book in the Storm series, featuring secondary characters from Something Like Spring, including Kelly, William, and Nathaniel. That being said, it is my opinion that you will get so much more out of the story if you read the Seasons series first (go, run, get them!).I have to be honest here and say that I really, I mean really, disliked Kelly for the first third of the book. I did not find him likeable and could best describe him as he hot head who creates the tension, holds a grudge, and is angry, immature, and insecure. Not a pretty picture, that’s for sure, but given his circumstances, not out of character. William on the other hand was the amiable push over, rarely standing up for himself and I could not help but like him. I mean who doesn’t want to spend time with a calm, peaceful person?What made the difference? What changed the tide from (justifiable and well written) annoyance was the introduction of Kelly’s counselor Allison from the Seasons series. I just love Alison so much. Her personality is a breath of fresh air and her role in Kelly’s life enables him to grow, learn, and move forward. From the point that Kelly and William break up, things progress with Kelly befriending Jason, who in turn sets in motion a chain of events that lead to Kelly and Nathaniel getting together. I can’t say that Nathaniel was a particularly deep character but that was okay, Kelly had enough personality for both of them and he did his part well.Read Jason’s review in its entirety here.

  • VVivacious
    2019-03-20 12:09

    I didn't really like "Something like Spring", that is probably why I didn't read this one sooner. Frankly I was kind of hoping that William would end up with Kelly even in "Something like Spring" because I just couldn't relate to Jason. And Kelly always seemed like an interesting character to me.Well this book proves it, he is a very interesting guy. Kelly's story doesn't have an ending it kinds of drifts into oblivion but the phases that his life goes through are nothing short of incredible.I guess a lot of us wouldn't know how to recover from losing a part of ourselves. And while Kelly does a miserable job of finding himself in the end he does find himself and ultimately that is what really matters. The best part of this story was Kelly and how he finds his way back to living even when faced with the numerous and sometimes seemingly never-ending challenges.William and Kelly were nothing short of en-lightning, their love story was definitely unique. Seeing these two different people, fall in a love bounded by tragedy, trying to be the best for the other but continuously falling short... Wow.I also really liked Nathaniel. And I hope Caesar didn't screw him up too bad and I really want a happy ending for Kelly and Nathaniel. Here's hoping we get one.

  • Jye
    2019-03-25 07:51

    Yet again another brilliant addition. Everything is continuing to meet the expectations I have of Jay Bell.He succeeded in making Kelly a likeable character... eventually. At first I liked him, once he got with William I did not. But after they broke up I truly started to enjoy him. It showed an arrogant, rude and abrupt young man. But at the same time someone who was insecure and weak. Someone who truly wanted love. I cannot say I go much on the relationship which was the focus in this story, it felt a bit weak and tbh not entirely healthy. But it suited the characters that Jay had created.(view spoiler)[ all I can say is that I hope the next addition makes Nathaniel a more likeable character, I do like how he is the first character to have an indication of not being perfectly physically fit.(hide spoiler)]Keep up the good work!

  • Albert
    2019-03-08 06:04

    I hate this review. Sorry. Jay Bell is one of my favorite authors. I read all his books. For me, Autumn was definitely the best book from the Seasons series. I expected this book to be something new. Instead it connects to the Seasons series. This itself is not bad, but I had several kinds of deja vu's. The characters, the story line, the book setup, it all was a little bit too much according to the "seasons" formula. So, I was not so much surprised and also the Kelly character did not really grab me. Again, I'm sorry for this review, but I'm already looking forward to the next book(s) as both Nathaniel (and William?!) are characters I really love to read more about.

  • Chrissy M
    2019-03-08 09:54

    I love this series!!!!

  • Don
    2019-03-04 07:41

    This is told from Kelly's perspective. Kelly was introduced in the prior book "Something Like Spring" as the boyfriend of the main character's love interest in that book. In "Spring" Kelly seemed to be an angry bitchy kind of guy. Then at the end of "Spring" he has a photo exhibit and seems to have it all together. This story, "Lightning" is his story. It's a story of young love, broken dreams, longing, desire and second chances. As usual Jay weaves his story lines very well and is able to get into a completely different character's head, while still relying on the characters in prior books. Loved it.

  • Lena Grey
    2019-03-07 04:49

    "Nothing splendid has ever been achieved except by those who dared believe that something inside of them was superior to circumstance." ~ Bruce BartonKelly Phillips, of 'Something Like Lightning' by Jay Bell, is, in essence, struck by lightning. Due to a tragic set of circumstances, Kelly endures years of heartbreak and pain, but instead of wallowing in self-pity, Kelly works his way through his disappointments while learning the lessons life is determined to teach him.Kelly is smart, handsome, with a great, supportive family, but he wants more. He wants a relationship. Being black and gay is enough of a challenge, but falling in love with his straight best friend is almost unbearable because, after declaring his feelings, Kelly loses him altogether. Then Kelly becomes closer to another classmate, William, who is the nicest guy Kelly has ever known. Even though they fall in love, their outlook on life is vastly different causing arguments between them, and the timing just isn't right. When William falls for Jason, he feels incredibly bad about his feelings, but he's miserable with Kelly. He will inevitably hurt Kelly even more if they don't break up. Kelly is lost after William leaves him, but deep down, he knows it is for the best. Still, it's hard to give up on a dream.Since Kelly's original life plans are interrupted by an accident, he needs to find another way to make a living. He is offered an opportunity to model for Marcello who is an influential business man and accepts. Modeling is not Kelly's life ambition, but he does enjoy the benefits his success affords. It also brings him into contact with Nathaniel, Marcello's brooding assistant. There's an attraction there, but Kelly is bothered by Nathaniel's condition of no strings attached. That's not what he wants, but Kelly does want to be in Nathaniel's bed, so he throws caution to the wind and accepts his terms. Nathaniel hasn't shared his past, but Kelly is perceptive enough to know that something earth-shattering must have happened to cause Nathaniel's aversion to anything to do with being close to another person. When Nathaniel's fears get the best of him and he leaves Kelly, all he can do is force himself to keep moving forward, regardless. Even though Nathaniel's logic is flawed, Kelly can't make Nathaniel stay with him if he doesn't want to. He can't give up because if he does, all of his struggles, everything he's fought so hard to attain will be in vain and the happiness he seeks will always be an illusive dream.Jay's grasp of creating emotional atmospheres in his story is phenomenal. His words reach inside of me, invoking emotions, almost before I know I feel them. They sometimes leave me happy and hopeful, and at others, sad and disillusioned along with every other emotion in between. His honest portrayals afford me the opportunity to be inside his characters’ heads so I am better able to understand them. Kelly's transformation is particularly impressive. When Kelly was first introduced in Jay's book 'Something Like Spring' he wasn't that likable. He came across as grouchy, bossy, outspoken, jealous, and holding on to William for dear life, keeping him in a relationship almost against his will; but after hearing his side of the story, not only did I come to like Kelly, but I also came to admire this strong, determined young man who, even though more than once he lost almost everything, but through it all, he never gave up and never gave in. Kelly continued to be true to himself whatever that took. I highly recommend this book to those of you who are 'Something Like...” fans who yearn to learn the truth behind the characters’ actions. They will get a chance to revisit many of the characters like Tim, Ben, and others who have helped make this series as popular and amazing as it is. Thanks, Jay, for your dedication to this series and to us, your fans, who, if they feel like I do, will never want to see it end.NOTE: This book was provided by the author for the purpose of a review on Rainbow Book Reviews.

  • Stephen
    2019-03-25 04:56

    Kelly Phillips is a fleet young man to whom running comes as naturally as breathing. While he's generally aggressively competitive and dreams of someday competing in the Olympics, at the beginning of this tale he's more interested in helping his best friend Jared win a coveted trophy in a triathlon. Kelly's also struggling with coming out to his best friend and hoping that even if his feelings aren't reciprocated, at least that they can stay friends. The main stumbling block for Jared's winning might be William Townson, a guy that Kelly remembers as being a skinny bean-pole of a kid but who puberty has treated very well. Combative Kelly and "gentle giant" William's confrontation and the subsequent developments will change both of their lives forever. This book is billed as the first in Jay Bell's new series but is really just a continuation of the older "seasons" series with many of the characters making appearances though the torch has definitely been passed to the younger generation. Personally I think that that is just fine. Bell's books span a lot more time than is common in most MM fiction but they really do have a perspective and a "wisdom gained of years" quality that's hard to portray in any other way. For me the perspective gained over time adds a level of depth and enjoyment to the stories and any new additions to the original series also add to that enjoyment. When I started this one I'd NOT read Something Like Spring and I noted a few references that suggested that I'd enjoy the story more if I went back and filled in the gaps. So I did and I gotta say that I really liked both books. Actually reading Something Like Lightning before reading Something Like Spring made it easier to empathize with Kelly. In many ways the last book of the first series is really the first book of this series but then, like the seasons, one naturally follows the other and it doesn't really matter than much where you start. All Jay's books use covers created by his husband Andreas and it was fun that this one included a spoiler of sorts but it was hidden in a mischievous way. Knowing that Jay is a transplanted Texan who now lives in Germany, it was fun to see his Texas based characters also making the trip and seeing a bit of Germany in this book. Note: I was given a copy of this by the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.

  • Barb ~rede-2-read~
    2019-02-25 09:03

    Jay Bell does it again with this new series, a subset of the previous "Something Like" books. I enjoyed meeting characters who I thought were new and then realizing that I had met them in previous books as secondary characters. This one is primarily about Kelly, the young guy who was William's boyfriend in Something Like Spring. He's the one who was an amputee and was bitter and cynical, holding on to William with iron claws. But in this story, our perspective is completely different and we see Kelly, who survived a terrible accident, losing his dream of running in the Olympics and trying to hold on to the man he loves even though guilt and anger about the accident are driving a wedge between them. Most of the first half of the story was about them but as we know, William moved on and joined the Coast Guard after high school. Kelly moves onward too and actually ends up in a modeling career, and finally with a boyfriend named Nataniel. Remember him? Caesar's boyfriend in Something Like Spring. Nataniel, however, is emotionally damaged from past experiences which he refuses to share with Kelly and it ultimately leads to heartbreak for both of them. I love the way this author grabs me and won't let me go until I experience all the emotions he's tied into the story. I love, then hate, then love the characters again. I enjoy their ups and downs, their strengths and weaknesses, in short-- their humanity. I'm looking forward to continuing this series when the next installment, Something Like Thunder is published. In fact, I might just be first in line. And PS - it would be really nice to see Kelly get his HEA. Hint. Hint.

  • Pjm12
    2019-02-27 05:01

    Bell's books are worth the bucks. His stories are long and engaging and readers (well, ok, me) never quite know what direction he might take. He does like to give us the same scenarios from different points of view, which really provides a 360 degree look at these pivotal moments in the characters' lives.We also see what were fairly unsympathetic characters in one book turn out to be identifable in another. So Kelly, the reason why William and Jason can't be together in 'Something like Spring' is portrayed here as a gorgeous boy, mostly more happy than angry. I actually found William less likeable.I love we go on long journeys with Bell's characters. Relationships change and people change and life goes on and they learn to adapt to new circumstances. When we see Kelly finally want to commit to someone, we greet the news with joy and want to cheer him along.I must confess I wasn't happy with (view spoiler)[Nathaniel's abrupt declaration of love. I wanted a moment of more epiphany, but I suppose we don't get his viewpoint, so it makes sense... I guess. And also, the story's not anywhere near finished, so we had to move through that quickly to get onto the sad(der) bits (hide spoiler)]. I found the last bit of news about William and Jason verry interesting. I guess we will come back to visit them (through William's eyes?) at some later stage??? And is Layne a possible character? He is quite interesting.Bell is definitely a BIG picture guy. And he does it so well.

  • Aerin
    2019-03-03 07:55

    I've never in my life went from hating a book so bad in the first half, to loving the hell out of it in the second half. I was ready to give up on it at least 10 different times and I talked myself out of it. Why? Because this is the first Jay Bell book I've ever read and everyone is raving about this author, so I thought I HAVE to give it a chance. And I'm happy that it worked out for me in the end.The main character, Kelly, was the most annoying, immature, and selfish brat to ever star as a main character. Ugh, how i wanted to beat the hell out of him quite a few times. But then I think that was what the author had in mind, showing how a teenager can mature, learn more about himself and grow into great young man while learning how to be independent. Kelly was not good together with William and I honestly didn't see any chemistry between them at all. And after the accident, the sense of guilt on William's part kept them together even longer, and I didn't like one bit the person that Kelly became.William and Jason seem like a nice pair and I hope we'll get to read about them in a future book.The moment I really started to like Kelly was after he met Nathaniel. Then he became a whole different person from the punk I couldn't stand. I loved them together and I loved them apart, but I'm so happy they're going to get back together. Because I'm sure they will, in the next book of course. Which I'm going to be waiting for veeery patiently....NOT!

  • Michael
    2019-03-10 11:09

    Jay Bell has a gift with words, with making his readers love, laugh, worry and cry. The problem is that we love it even with the horrible tears, and keep coming back for more. He has a hit on his hands with the whole series. Lightning is no different. I did not like Kelly from the last one and love him now, like Tim was less likable in the first than second book. William is less likable than in the last one, slightly. That is the talent of a great writer, to bring out new emotions with the same characters. Writing time jumps is scary as well, and he does it well without losing the emotion or the thread of the theme. This story is so interesting and engaging. The only criticism I ever have is that the sex scenes in the early parts are graphic for YA, which lends itself to self publishing. I can't believe at this point this series isn't picked up by major publishers. Check this one out or any of the Something Like series. You will thank me for it. (view spoiler)[I am happy that Nathaniel and Kelly get together probably and we will see in the second book what that will eventually look like. I was worried as Kelly became a purposeless drifter for a while there after Nathaniel has his breakdown about potential loss, until he runs into Tim and his gallery. It is great how Ben and Tim's connections keep saving people. Seeing Allison in action was a rare treat. And Marcello is awesome, always having the right answer or plan. I want his book and story.(hide spoiler)]

  • Melissa
    2019-03-24 11:02

    4.5 starsI love to read books by Jay Bell. He pulls me in and makes me love these characters that I don't think I would love at first. Kelly is one of those characters. When we met him in Something Like Spring he is mean and ill tempered...but who wouldn't be? He had an Olympic dream that was taken from him in an instant! (which I think he handled the loss of pretty damn well!) He fought hard to keep control of the few things he thought he could in his life. But in the end he let William go with dignity. He gained a lot of my respect there! I thought the telling of Kelly and William's story was done really well. We needed to know how they ended up the way they did. They were only kids when their relationship started (and ended!) They both had a lot of growing to do.However, with over half the book devoted to them, I felt like I didn't get a really good feel for the emotional connection (view spoiler)[and later loss (hide spoiler)] between Kelly and Nathanial. While we are told of the growing feelings, I felt there was not enough time spent on page devoted to these two. Perhaps that will be resolved in the next book....which I eagerly await!!!!