I found this novel painfully slow going at times. There was too much introspection, too little dialogue. The young grad student and the 17-year-old narrator annoyed me with their wishy-washy feelings and emotions. I craved more intensity and passion. Despite its flaws, I was gradually swept away by the lovely writing, the setting, and growing intimacy between the two main characters. Knowing early on these two young men were not destined to remain together did not prevent me from being deeply moved by the story’s poignant conclusion.