Book Review: Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas

Cemetery Boys, Aiden Thomas’s New York Times bestselling paranormal young adult thriller is the Book-Club Book of the Month. In Cemetery Boys, Yadriel, the protagonist and main character is a 16-year-old, gay, trans, Latinx man. Yadriel wants to be accepted into the Brujx community as a male and as a Brujo. He successfully performs a ritual in front of Santa Muerta AKA Lady Death, granting him his powers, with his best friend and cousin Maritza. After sensing the death of his cousin, Miguel, Yadriel attempts to summon him with his brand-new Brujo powers. Instead, he accidentally summons Julian, a hot, newly dead ghost, and school bad boy. Yadriel tries to release the spirit of Julian, but realizing the sudden death of both Miguel and Yadriel could be connected, Yadriel, Maritza, and Julian decide to work together to solve the mystery. When Julian starts showing signs of turning into a maligno (evil/bad) they decide to release Julian’s spirit. However, Yadriel doesn’t want to release Julian because he has fallen for him, and Julian has fallen for Yadriel in turn. But, plot twist, Julian and Miguel end up alive! In the end, they solve the mystery, get their happy ending, and Yadriel is accepted into his family and community as both a male and as a brujo.

This book sucked me in right from the start. I seriously couldn’t put this down! It was really well-written, inclusive, and diverse. From the start, I adored the cast of characters and how they went about solving the mystery. Aiden Thomas perfectly balanced the fast-paced mystical themes with heavy subjects like racism, transphobia, homophobia, deportation, and LGBTQIA+ acceptance.

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