Cut Both Ways by Carrie Mesrobian


Cut Both Ways
Title : Cut Both Ways
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 0062349902
Language : English
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 340

Will Caynes never has been good with girls At seventeen, he s still waiting for his first kiss He s certainly not expecting it to happen in a drunken make out session with his best friend, Angus But it does and now Will s conflicted he knows he likes girls, but he didn t exactly hate kissing a guy.Then Will meets Brandy, a cute and easy to talk to sopho He s totally into her too which proves, for sure, that he s not gay So why does he keep hooking up with Angus on the sly Will knows he can t keep seeing both of them, but besides his new job in a diner, being with Brandy and Angus are the best parts of his whole messed up life His divorced parents just complicate everything His father, after many half baked business ventures and endless house renovations, has started drinking again And his mom is no help unless loading him up with a bunch of stuff he doesn t need plus sticking him with his twin half sisters counts as parenting He s been bouncing between both of them for years, and neither one feels like home.Deciding who to love, who to choose, where to live Whichever way Will goes, someone will get hurt Himself, probably the most.


Cut Both Ways Reviews


  • Steph Sinclair

    I was actually hoping to be the black sheep amongst my friends when it came to Cut Both Ways I wanted to be that lone wolf, singing praises for this book So it s unfortunate that I have to agree with everyone else and say this book was terrible .I knew going in that this book involved cheating, so I was ready for that And I m generally okay with unlikable characters, which is what Will essentially is But I was really looking forward to seeing how Mesrobian handled sexuality and the boxes so I was actually hoping to be the black sheep amongst my friends when it came to Cut Both Ways I wanted to be that lone wolf, singing praises for this book So it s unfortunate that I have to agree with everyone else and say this book was terrible .I knew going in that this book involved cheating, so I was ready for that And I m generally okay with unlikable characters, which is what Will essentially is But I was really looking forward to seeing how Mesrobian handled sexuality and the boxes society likes to place it straight, bi, gay, etc I wanted to see that exploration and see a character struggle to understand himself and how he identified I also wondered if this was a book that could then challenge my own views on sexuality.It did none of this Cut Both Ways is the classic example of how marketing and publicity has the tendency to sell the public on a certain kind of book, when it s completely NOT that kind of book Sure, Cut Both Ways does feature a main character, struggling with sexual identity, but it never really goes anywhere The main conflict of the story isn t even about that or the cheating It s about Will s broken family his alcoholic, hoarding dad, his in his mind overbearing mom and his ability to run away from any and all problems.The only sexual exploration in Cut Both Ways is Will feeling guilty about sleeping with Angus when he has a girlfriend or having sex with his girlfriend when he s feeling sorry for himself There is inner monologue about if Will is gay or not, but it never goes further than that He never considers that he could like both, that it could be okay to enjoy both In fact, Will uses sex as a form of escapism from the main plot of the novel dealing with his dad s issues For some unknown reason, his father finishing his house remodel project seemed to be the central conflict of the novel, while everything else took a backseat.The characters were no better, mostly serving as pawns in the story with no real purpose for their existence outside of forcing Will to react The only character that did seem to be semi fleshed out was Will himself, but I d wager he s a hard character to relate to unless you happen to be the specific reader this book was aimed at, and I really don t know what kind of reader that would be The way he treats his girlfriend, Brandy, was infuriating, cheating aside, and he showed no signs of wanting to improve it or at least break up with her to let her move on No, he decided that cheating on her with Angus and having her around to fuck whenever he felt horny or sad was better.A part of me wasn t sure what to make of Will and Brandy s relationship It developed shortly after Angus kisses Will, so initially I thought that Will hooking up with Brandy was a way for him to not feel gay But then he decides to willingly be her boyfriend and engage in relationship activities despite not really caring about her And it just killed me that he could not show an ounce of feeling for her whenever she told him she care about him or even when she tells him she loves him Nothing He gives her nothing.Another thing that really bothered me was Will s lack consideration for the trouble he could get Brandy in I had no issue with Will constantly talking about how horny he was, but when you ve already gotten your girlfriend in trouble by her Aunt for having sex under her roof and she s warned you to be careful because pregnancy is a real thing that happens and you proceed to start feeling her up right on the porch in daylight, expecting sex right there, something is wrong with you But let s not stop there Because, of course, Will is so horny that he has to have it whenever nature pounds on the door like it s the po po, so hurried sex outdoors without a condom sounds great Just awesome insert pregnancy scareAngus only seemed slightly bothered that Will was cheating on Brandy and was than wiling to be used for sex To be honest, we really don t know much about how Angus feels about anything since he barely had any lines in the book and only really shows up conveniently when Will is thinking about sex.SPOILERS from this point forward because I m angry and I have to vent a little As awful as all that sounds, the Cut Both Ways still had a chance to redeem itself, or so I thought There was still the ending that could bring at least some of these issues to a resolution But no, that would have been too much work.So here s the ending in a nut shell right on the cusp of a climax, it just ends Nothing is addressed And just when I thought the book was finally going to dive into some of the anger inducing issues, I flip to the next page and it s the Author s Note.I wanted to scream.For a book to attempt a heavy issue and then outright refuses to deal with any of it during the book nor at the end, I was shocked and felt cheated Does Will finally break up with Brandy Does he decide to instead stop sleeping with Angus Does Brandy ever find out will is cheating on her Does Will come to any sort of sexual self acceptance What happens now that Will s step dad has revealed himself as a homophobe How does his un intentional coming out affect his relationship with his mother, father and sisters Does Will ever admit to Angus that he is in love with him DOES ANYTHING GET DEALT WITH The only thing interesting about Cut Both Ways was the author s choice to leave out the word bi sexual in the story to allow the reader to contemplate what his is and what he might be While I was reading, it did seem kinda odd that Will never considered the possibility of being bi sexual It s just that in this day in age, with people coming out and being supportive of others, that it wouldn t have not once crossed his mind I not asking for Will to have identified himself in the story, just that I think it s odd he wouldn t have thought about it And again, all this would have been nice in theory if Will even TRIED to deal with anything or if the ending didn t end right after the climax GAH.Just an overall disappointing read that was a complete waste of time Finished Copy was received via YA Books Central in exchange for an honest review.

  • Whitney Atkinson

    2.5 stars I was ready to love this book From the cover to the premise, I could not WAIT But it became clear pretty early on that this book and I would not be the best of friends The writing of this book really put me off I guess I was expecting it would be lyrical, a raw portrayal of self discovery, but the word choice was so crewd and there s so much vulgar language and material I think this was due to the female author trying to emphasize that she s writing from a male point of v 2.5 stars I was ready to love this book From the cover to the premise, I could not WAIT But it became clear pretty early on that this book and I would not be the best of friends The writing of this book really put me off I guess I was expecting it would be lyrical, a raw portrayal of self discovery, but the word choice was so crewd and there s so much vulgar language and material I think this was due to the female author trying to emphasize that she s writing from a male point of view, which made it seem very fake There s a lot of unnecessary cursing and a LOT of inappropriate scenes or descriptions of inappropriate things holy moly it s inundated Further, I disliked how Will went about discovering himself He has a girlfriend, yet he cheats on her with his best friend This entire book, Will fluctuates the two and never tells his girlfriend about the cheating It felt very wrong and I don t support the cheating, and I also think it was a cop out to never acknowledge by the end of the book that it was wrong to be happening at the same time.Speaking of the ending of this book, I hated it There s no real resolution Everything just kind of crashes and burns and then nothing is solved, and it ends In the author s note, the author states, The word bisexual never once appears in this story and I think that s bullshit I think in a story that s so rare to come across in YA fiction, especially in this one where the topic is explored so crudely, bisexuality and Will s happenings upon it needs to be explained This wasn t a self discovery novel so much as a novel where a horny boy experiments with everyone who s interested in him, and it s sloppy and even uncomfortable to read at times because you can tell he s using people for sex and it s not genuine The only reason this didn t get one star is because I liked Will s backstory about having divorced parents That entire conflict of his family being in turmoil was written very relatably and I genuinely did like Will s hardworking yet passive personality However, this book left a really bad taste in my mouth and i m SUPER disappointed with it and I would not recommend this book if you re looking to read a book on bisexuality It s a poor, poor example even though it was a quick read when I finally got time to sit down and read it

  • Aly&

    WARNING SPOILERS I can t tag them because I need to vent like a motherfucker, so proceed at your own risk.Someone please tell me this is a joke I was so excited when I was approved on EW for this I can t even explain HOW excited But I kept putting it off because I wanted to read it when I could savour it When I knew I had a day with nothing to do and it was just me and this book and a billion cups of coffee I wanted to wait until I could sit down and the couch would bear the imprint of my WARNING SPOILERS I can t tag them because I need to vent like a motherfucker, so proceed at your own risk.Someone please tell me this is a joke I was so excited when I was approved on EW for this I can t even explain HOW excited But I kept putting it off because I wanted to read it when I could savour it When I knew I had a day with nothing to do and it was just me and this book and a billion cups of coffee I wanted to wait until I could sit down and the couch would bear the imprint of my ass on it because there was no way I was putting this book down until it was done And what better time than ARC August Today was that day Today, I woke up, checked my ARC calendar with all its snazzy markings and big red circles It was a sunny, hot day so my siblings spent the entire day running around like headless chickens outside I made a cup of coffee, grabbed my iPad and started reading I was prepared to ignore the cheating, because I knew it would happen I was prepared to deal with the insane amount of jerking off this guy does because he s a seventeen year old, virgin, horny guy and that s what they do I was prepared to keep myself from murdering both Will and Brandy with her fucking ridiculous, clingy messages and phone calls I was prepared to ignore all that rubbish But that ending No No way I get it I get that Will has on his plate than just figuring out whether he s gay or just really into his best friend I get that it s not an easy thing to deal with He also had problems with his dad and his mum and everything else But this not the sort of book that can take liberties with open, abrupt endings This book, I thought, was a coming of age story of a boy confused with his identity and sexuality I thought it would be a book about coming out About finding yourself About growing the fuck up But no This book is about Will Caynes and his AMAZING way of not dealing with ANYTHING The entire storyline can be summarised thusly jerk off BFF have sex with GF jerk off by himself worry about his father jerk off BFF use GF because ANGST and GUILT and CONFUSION jerk off by himself worry about his father jerk off some I mean, thinking about it, Will is an asshole He doesn t think about anyone but himself He doesn t think that Angus obviously has feelings for him and even says so as long as he s getting off He doesn t think that Brandy is a kid who has feelings, but nearly knocks her up anyway, because he was horny and had to do it right then and there, without a condom He doesn t think that his father needs help, as long as he still gets to fuck Brandy and jerk off Angus This book has made me SO MAD Okay Deep breaths.I totally, completely and utterly understand Will s confusion I do I get it But I just can t accept how he went about it At first, I was okay with the cheating I understood it At first, it wasn t even cheating because he wasn t WITH Brandy I honestly believed, deep down, that the moment Will realised that what he was doing was wrong, he d stop it I believed, 100%, that the second he realised where his true feelings lay, he would quit all the crap and do something about it.I was so fucking wrong.Will realised who he really wanted to be with pretty early on But did he do something about it No Fuck no Instead of telling Angus that he loved him and wanted to be with him, he fucked Brandy at his friend s party so he didn t have to deal with it.Instead of telling Brandy that man, he s not into the relationship as much as he thought he was, that yeah, the sex was great but it wasn t going to work out because he had graduation, and work, and oh yeah, HE S GAY, that he s possibly attracted to both genders, he kept screwing around with her at every Possible Moment.Instead of doing the right thing, he did all the WRONG things, KNOWING THAT HE WAS WRONG KNOWING WHAT HE NEEDED TO DO TO PUT THINGS RIGHT Knowing that he s gay, knowing that Brandy isn t right for him, knowing that Angus is the One , knowing all that he knew, he just brushed it under the rug Completely did not fucking deal with it, because he couldn t stop his sex drive.I m not even kidding That s his excuse That once you have sex and once you start getting it pretty much every day, you just can t stop Oh, and that he wanted both Brandy AND Angus, even if it killed him Like I can t even comprehend the stupidity I mean, I know all about being selfish and wanting everything, no matter what, but it s I can t explain it It s the fact that he KNEW what he was doing was wrong, that he was hurting people, but he just did not give a shit That s the best way to describe it He did not give two flying fucks, because it made him feel good Because before Brandy, he d been a virgin, and suddenly he s not, and now he has to have sex all the time That s it, really That s what really made me angry about this book His selfishness His acknowledging that selfishness, swearing to do something about it, and then not doing anything at all His annoying, immature way of not dealing with life.He hurts Angus, badly So much so that Angus locks himself in a bathroom and waits for Will to leave the fucking house Does Will reach out to him Does he answer his texts or calls Does he think about, for one measly, tiny second, about Angus s feelings No, he does not What he thinks about is jerking off What he thinks about is how horny he is And then his mum and stepfather find out about the pictures Angus and Will took of each other Shit hits the fan, but does Will think even for one MINUTE about what Angus might be dealing with on his end How much trouble they re BOTH in No He runs away He runs and hides and cries into his dirty hands, because I swear to God this guy showered, like, three times in the book and it takes a YEAR to tell the story So he runs and hides and turns his phone off.And that s the end, pretty much.That s it.Will turns his phone off.Happy Will Everything gone, everything forgotten After reading the Author s Note, I do understand what the author tried to do and, in some aspects, it worked I felt for Will I felt for his confusion, for not knowing whether he liked guys, or guys and girls, or just girls I really did understand it I liked that he seemed to come to terms with it pretty early on, and that he knew exactly who he wanted But I couldn t understand why he didn t stop all the shit and just DEALT with it Especially since, in a lot of ways, he didn t even want to be with Brandy I mean, when your girlfriend is giving you head and you re thinking about the guy you re in love with, that s a pretty huge clue It s IMPOSSIBLE to ignore But I did not like Will I couldn t get behind his excuses, his lame trying, his no fucks given attitude Some of the things he did, to me, were utterly despicable Yes he s a teenager, and teenagers make mistakes, but it was the fact that he KNEW it was a mistake He knew it, he did it anyway, and then he guilt tripped the entire world for his misgivings He blamed everyone but himself I made excuses for him from the get go I tried, I really did, to put myself in his shoes and, for the most part, I understood him It wasn t until the 50% mark where he figured it all out and still fucked around because he just didn t care did I lose all respect for him.I m not even mad any I m just disappointed I m disappointed because I was so excited to finally read this, to finally read Will s story, and ended up furious instead Yet, I gave it two stars For the writing, the side characters, the families shown I really enjoyed the scenes with Will and his little sisters, and Will and Angus babysitting It was ridiculously adorable and funny, and I wished we got of Angus and Will In retrospect, Angus only ever shows up a handful of times Which is a shame I would ve loved to read about them together.SO If anyone would like to recommend me some LGBT books, please feel free Especially if they re YA NA

  • Sarah

    Source I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read to review basis Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss I can t change it, the truth that I want both of them Brandy and Angus This was a YA story about a boy who had a girlfriend, but also cheated on her with his gay best friend.Will was a bit of an odd character, and while I understood that he didn t know if he was gay or straight or somewhere in between, kissing someone else whilst you have a girlfriend is still cheating, Source I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read to review basis Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss I can t change it, the truth that I want both of them Brandy and Angus This was a YA story about a boy who had a girlfriend, but also cheated on her with his gay best friend.Will was a bit of an odd character, and while I understood that he didn t know if he was gay or straight or somewhere in between, kissing someone else whilst you have a girlfriend is still cheating, even if the other person in a guy not a girl No one minds Angus coming over Angus, who Taylor and Kinney love Angus, who could be in my bed all night And doesn t even need an excuse The storyline in this was about Will hoping back and forth between his girlfriend and his gay best friend, and not really considering how unfair this was to both of them He seemed to just be of the opinion that if it felt good, and he wanted to do it, then he should just do it, without thought to the consequences, which wasn t really the noblest of ideas I also got a bit tired of the number of times Will told us how hard his dick was I really did not need to know that My dick isn t even hard I mean, not entirely Not even half hard About halfway to halfway hard.You re half gay, then I have to say that the people I felt most sorry for were Will s girlfriend Brandy, who had no idea that he was getting jiggy with his male best friend, and the male best friend Angus, who clearly had feelings for Will, and had to watch him cosying up to his girlfriend when only hours earlier they had been naked in bed together and doing than just kissing Half hard Half gay Quarter gay Can Angus tell Does he know Can you sense that, when you re gay Because you have a dick, too, and you know how dicks act The ending to this was a bit of a disappointment, because it felt like nothing was resolved Will didn t make an decisions regarding his sexuality, or who he wanted to be with, or anything really 6.5 out of 10

  • Jessica Folded Between the Pages of Books

    This book sounded so damn good, but it ended up being rather problematic.1 Will felt so disconnected from everything There was no emotion at all, even though emotional things happened It felt like he was in a fog, which just made no sense It made the book incredibly boring, even when things happened.2 Where is the plot Seriously, what was the point of this book Books are still supposed to have actual plots, right Where there s some sort of story, with a climax and a resolution This bo This book sounded so damn good, but it ended up being rather problematic.1 Will felt so disconnected from everything There was no emotion at all, even though emotional things happened It felt like he was in a fog, which just made no sense It made the book incredibly boring, even when things happened.2 Where is the plot Seriously, what was the point of this book Books are still supposed to have actual plots, right Where there s some sort of story, with a climax and a resolution This book had none of that There was nothing Just a jumble of things happening, without any reason And the end Ugh, seriously, the end isn t an end Nothing is resolved At all Why did I waste my time when I get nothing at the end 3 The painfully stereotypical portrayal of bisexuality I was so excited for this book because there needs to be discussion of bisexuality Bis are horribly ignored in the lgbt community and in society at large I thought this book would help fill that void, not play up existing stereotypes The stereotype of bisexuals is that they are promiscuous it s impossible for them to be in a monogamous relationship, because they always want both genders Btw, while I m totally cool with polyamory, not all bisexuals are unable to monogamous This book plays into this stereotype in a damaging way Will constantly cheats on Brandy with Angus, because he just wants them both so badly And that s another thing both relationships seem to have no actual foundation rather than sex Casual sex is cool and all, but being bi or gay or straight for that matter , isn t all about sex And not a problem for me, but a warning to others this book is pretty explicit about sex I personally would not have classified it as young adult

  • Ren

    Badly written book about an immature brat who makes horrible life choices I wouldn t judge the book so harshly if it wasn t for the fact that it s so pretentious It tries too hard to be an Important Book that addresses Important Themes For Confused Teens, and I just no Don t read this stupid book, especially if you re a teen There are better books out there.And, look, I m not a prude but there is a lot of sex in this book, and it s not safe sex If sex is an important part of your YA book Badly written book about an immature brat who makes horrible life choices I wouldn t judge the book so harshly if it wasn t for the fact that it s so pretentious It tries too hard to be an Important Book that addresses Important Themes For Confused Teens, and I just no Don t read this stupid book, especially if you re a teen There are better books out there.And, look, I m not a prude but there is a lot of sex in this book, and it s not safe sex If sex is an important part of your YA book, you ve got to get it right The book and the characters make such a big deal about Will and Brandy using condoms to avoid the risk of pregnancy, but nobody ever mentions that you also use condoms to avoid STDs.Will never says that he uses a condom when he has sex with Angus Oral sex counts as sex, kids If he has unprotected sex with his boyfriend, and then he has unprotected sex with his girlfriend, and he doesn t even know who else Angus and Brandy might have had sex with just no Everyone freaks out about the stupidest things in this book, but not one single character worries about herpes, and really, they should.If you re writing a book aimed at teens, because there s not many books about bisexual kids exploring their sexuality or whatever, you should be aware of what else teens lack sex ed about gay sex And yet this book falls in the obvious trap If you re a straight couple then you should use condoms if you re a gay couple eh, who cares I m really, really disappointed about how this was handled And also about the unlikeable characters and the terrible editing and the meandering plot that goes nowhere But mostly about how immature the whole book felt

  • Kat Kennedy

    DNF at 92%

  • Anthony

    It is hard to read a book when, at first, you realize the narrator speaks, thinks, acts, reacts exactly the same as you do Will Caynes is than just my spirit animal Will Caynes is my life Every frame of this paginated film portrays experiences I ve witnessed, felt, or partaken of Will s mother IS my mother, top to bottom Tom Will s dad and Garrett s friendship reminds me too much of my dad and his closest friends That pivotal moment with Jay yelling, Tess yelling, Will sometimes yel It is hard to read a book when, at first, you realize the narrator speaks, thinks, acts, reacts exactly the same as you do Will Caynes is than just my spirit animal Will Caynes is my life Every frame of this paginated film portrays experiences I ve witnessed, felt, or partaken of Will s mother IS my mother, top to bottom Tom Will s dad and Garrett s friendship reminds me too much of my dad and his closest friends That pivotal moment with Jay yelling, Tess yelling, Will sometimes yelling but mostly embarrassed into silence MY LIFE I lived that moment, over and over and over again Angus, the boy in love with the wrong boy who happens also to be his best friend, I ve been In many ways, Angus I still am I m not sure I know how NOT to be Angus.Sorry if this review is in no way helpful to you This book was so personal, it s as if my dearest friend wrote me a love note.Thank you, Carrie Mesrobian You can t possibly know or understand how much you ve effected my life by writing this book

  • tonya.

    2.5 starsFor a subject I am passionate about, this book bored me to tears The writing was so bare and emotionless it felt like reading a stream of high school boy consciousness rather than any coherent narrative I felt zero emotion from Will it was like reading a play by play of events, like he was watching things happen to him rather than experiencing anything So little introspection So passive I wanted to hit pause, sit Will down and ask him how he felt about everything.And what was tha 2.5 starsFor a subject I am passionate about, this book bored me to tears The writing was so bare and emotionless it felt like reading a stream of high school boy consciousness rather than any coherent narrative I felt zero emotion from Will it was like reading a play by play of events, like he was watching things happen to him rather than experiencing anything So little introspection So passive I wanted to hit pause, sit Will down and ask him how he felt about everything.And what was that ending Can you call it an ending if there wasn t any story to begin with Very strange choices happening here

  • Christina (A Reader of Fictions)

    The advance reviews for Cut Both Ways have been less than stellar, but I kept my hopes up since I d liked Mesrobian s prior novels and BISEXUAL LOVE TRIANGLE YES YES Well, sadly, I very much see why the early reviews aren t that great I was actually feeling pretty 3 star about it, but the I ve been thinking about this book, the less I like it The ending was horrible and, with the time I ve had to think about it, I ve just gotten angrier and angrier about how this book turned out The fol The advance reviews for Cut Both Ways have been less than stellar, but I kept my hopes up since I d liked Mesrobian s prior novels and BISEXUAL LOVE TRIANGLE YES YES Well, sadly, I very much see why the early reviews aren t that great I was actually feeling pretty 3 star about it, but the I ve been thinking about this book, the less I like it The ending was horrible and, with the time I ve had to think about it, I ve just gotten angrier and angrier about how this book turned out The following will be a rant with spoilers, if you can even call spoiling this particular ending spoiling.What Cut Both Ways does very very right is horniness Mesrobian never shies away from anything, and the horniness of the MC is always right in your face, which personally I love I mean, I know that I was thinking about sex a lot as a teen, even though I wasn t having it Also, there are a lot of sexual acts in this book A lot a lot I m thrilled that there are guy on guy hook ups without any of that fade to black shit too Will s bisexuality was what interested me and what made me care I hurt for this confused boy who doesn t even know bisexuality is a thing Everyone else I know who has read this book was bored, but I actually wasn t and read it pretty quickly, and still it all went to shit.However, it really annoys me that he never realizes that there isn t just gay or straight, because what s the point then How will this book help kids confused like Will is Yes, I know that Will is in the phase of questioning He might not even BE bisexual It could be that Angus is an exception The problem is that there s no discussion of any type of sexuality outside of being straight or gay Even if you decide a label doesn t work for you, you d likely consider it and WHY it didn t work for you It s hugely problematic for a book about a character attracted to people of both genders to not recognize the existence of bisexuality or anything outside of straight or gay.Outside of his sexuality, though, Will s lacking in personality Will doesn t know what we wants, aside from sex He mostly doesn t have opinions and he s looking for ways to not have to make choices about things He doesn t even know his close friends all that well In general, he s disconnected It s not even like he s a particularly nice guy, since he s cheating on his girlfriend through most of the book, though I actually didn t mind that as much in this scenario, because they re teens and obviously Will doesn t have anything figured out If you ve read Mesrobian s prior novels, Will is a lot like them, only there s literally nothing to him aside from the horniness.Worse, though, is that, viewed through the flat character that is Will, everything is flat He thinks lovingly of looking for strawberry ice cream at the diner than he ever does about either of his lovers Brandy comes across as nothing but needy and desperate, despite her sad back story and interest in photography Will only cares about her because sex Angus is supposedly his best friend on top of being a fuckbuddy, but I know even less about Angus, I think.The thing that kills me, though, because I did really find the book interesting even though I didn t find Will himself remotely interesting, is how much the ending sort of makes all of that pointless I kept waiting for Will to grow in some way but he doesn t There is no character development at all For anyone Will doesn t even finally dump Brandy so that he can admit his love for Angus, nor does he give up Angus or end things with both An open ending to the romance would have been fine if he reached some sort of resolution with his parents or himself, but there s really nothing.The book ends and he s in the same place he was when it started, except that he now regularly partakes in sexual acts The only thing that really happened over the course of the book is that he realized he was into Angus and liked working in a diner Like, one of the last things that happened is he got sort of kicked out of his mom and stepdad s house for his naked photos of Angus aaaaand we will never know what happens with that Let s just close on his stepfather shouting homophobic things, because that sounds like a really great place to leave off with the gay storyline Open endings can work, but this one does not Like, yes, life IS open ended, but Will has been through a lot of shit and it would be normal to change and grow through that It s not realistic for him to not change in the slightest SERIOUSLY THERE IS NO RESOLUTION TO ANYTHING AT ALL EVER, NOT WITH HIS FAMILY, NOT WITH HIS ROMANCE, NOT WITH HIS FUTURE, NOT WITHIN HIMSELF.Plotless books only work if the characters have a lot of personality I still maintain I would read a book about two people in an empty room talking, so long as there was voice like whoa, and love it, but, if there s not plot, there needs to be character development To me, a successful book needs to resolve something or open up your mind about something or tell a good story or just be entertaining, and Cut Both Ways did none of this I literally do not know what the point of this is, aside from being penis feels literary award bait But hey, that s just me If you like your novels without plot or character development and DO like a lot of details that are pertinent to nothing for 350 pages, by all means have at it.If Cut Both Ways were a song, it would be Ben Folds Rockin the Suburbs, but totally unironic, because, you know, it really is hard being male, middle class, and white Do I recommend Cut Both Ways The only reason I d recommend picking this up would be to skim for the sex scenes But you re probably better off just not