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Sno Ho by Ethan Day

As usual, the main aspect of an Ethan Day’s story it’s the lightness and the “chic” atmosphere. There is no nastiness at all, even if the characters are having trouble in their love life, they face it with “grandeur” attitude. In this case Boone has been recently dumped by his wealthy boyfriend in a very classy way: he was sent on a winter holiday in an up-scale lodge and then dumped by phone… well, at least he is in a up-scale lodge and not in a shitty condo apartment, isn’t he?

Boone faces the situation in the only realistic way: he decides to sorry drown in the local pub and obviously he awakes the next morning in bed with a stranger. That is the classical comedy incipit, and from that moment on, for Boone and one night stand Wade, turned wanna-be boyfriend, it’s one wonderful day after one wonderful day. They have to concentrate a full boy meets boy and boy falls in love for boy story in only one week, so there is no time to waste. And there is also the nice side aspect that the love story is not an “hidden” affair, but it develops in plain sight of all the little town of Summit City, who is looking upon its favourite boy trying to catch the love of his life.

I like Boone’s attitude at love: you can be as slutty as you want, if love is not part of the equation, but when the factor is added, then you have to be very careful, you are risking to hurt someone else feeling. Boone is not a bad guy, let us say that he enjoys sex; he has no qualms and he is a happy-to-go boy. But when he realizes that for Wade it’s not something ordinary, that he is not actually the usual ski instructor who spends half the time on the slopes and half in bed the guys he was paid to teach, then Boone also realizes that he has to be very careful, and to weight his options. Boone can joke with everything other than love. And if someone is wondering why he is not upset by having just lost his boyfriend, well, I don’t think Boone has ever been really in love so far.

Boone is the classical feisty little thing, at least “little” in comparison to Wade who is a mountain (of a) man. High spirited and always with the right repartee, he seems to loose his spoken skill only when he is in front of Wade, clear symptom of love on the horizon. Wade instead is a big boy with a fragile heart; he has experience the loss of both his parents, and he reacted making the whole town his family. But something is lacking, and probably when Boone enters the picture, so full of life, Wade feels like he is “enough” to fill that void.

Amazon Kindle: Sno Ho
Publisher: MLR Press,LLC (November 10, 2010)

Bottoms Up by William Maltese

William Maltese has a soft spot for hustlers (no pun intended) and they are often protagonists in his novels. The nice and classic thing is that, his hustlers are actually romantic at heart, and for love they would do anything, even what they wouldn’t do for money.

And as usual, being the hustler also the narrator of the story, he has no name. And truth be told he is not even an hustler, but an English secret agent posing as an hustler to involve a foreign big name in a scandal and then blackmailing him. The victim is Alain, the heir of an Eastern Europe independent small state, whose petroleum is coveted by many countries. Hustler has to seduce the young man, but instead he is seduced back.

Hustler is not used to be treated in a good way, and instead Alain is all sweet manners with him. Actually I think Alain would far prefer to be the hustler, since he is all submissive behaviour with the real Hustler, so much that never once let him bottom. Probably Hustler sees in Alain an innocence that it is not given by virginity, but by the protective feelings Alain arises in him. Alain, despite all his money and power, is someone Hustler comes to love and wants to protect.

There is a lot of sex, with a lot of bodily fluids and anal intercourses, but odd how it’s, I found the story more romantic than pornographic. This is probably one of the most romantic story I read by William Maltese, and for once sex is strictly connected to love, and this means exclusivity, so much that, when Hustler tries to go back to his usual buddy friend to have a bout of out of duty sex, he can’t perform since his body recognizes only one master.

Amazon Kindle: Bottoms Up
Publisher: MLR Press,LLC (November 10, 2010)

One Fire, One Ice by Jason Edding

Jason Edding’s story is a mix of innocence and naughtiness. Grant and Babhru have known each other since forever, their families were friends and the kids grew up together. When Grant started his first sexual fantasies, Babhru was in them; they had almost a mutual understanding, to not talk of that. Grant knows deep inside of himself that Babhru is gay like him, but he has never done anything to follow his feeling. At 21 years old, and recently orphaned, Grant is feeling helplessly alone, he lost any certainty he had, and the only true thing he still has is his love for Babhru.

And so Grant carefully plans a seduction; money is not a problem, his parents passing left him with more than enough. The idea is to bring Babhru on a ski lodge and to seduce him. How tender Grant is, planning the seduction with hot chocolate and small gifts. 21 years old is not so young, but really nor Grant or Babhru have seen much of the world, and I hope they will remain like that.

Even their first sexual encounter it’s not as you see in the movie; maybe due to inexperience, or the rush that seems to be always there with youth, but actually it’s not important. Yes, I hope that, with time, they will learn how to do it properly, but maybe, if they remain a bit innocent like that, their story will be better.

One Fire, One Ice after all is a sweet and tender romance, but there is an undertone of sadness. Grant in the end obtains what he most desires, but it’s like even that is not enough to dispel the sadness that ices his heart. There is a nice contraposition play in Grant and Babhru’s characters, Grant so full of desires, it’s for real the “ice” of the couple, the one whose cold Babhru has to warm; and Babhru, apparently so cool and detached, is in the end the fire that will melt Grant’s ice.

Amazon Kindle: One Fire, One Ice
Publisher: MLR Press,LLC (November 10, 2010)

http://www.mlrbooks.com/ShowBook.php?book=ANTHSLPE

Amazon: Melting the Slopes
Paperback: 248 pages
Publisher: MLR Press (December 16, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1608200841
ISBN-13: 978-1608200849

Reading List: http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
williammaltese
Feb. 4th, 2010 11:04 pm (UTC)
Always a pleasure
Ahhh, my dear. It's always nice when you have something to say about some "thing" of mine (even one of my short stories)!!!
elisa_rolle
Feb. 5th, 2010 08:08 am (UTC)
Re: Always a pleasure
Well in this case short is not at all bad ;-)
ethandayonline
Feb. 5th, 2010 12:04 am (UTC)
Thanks again, Elisa for taking the time to both read and review Melting. I'm still looking forward to sharing your lap with William. ; )
elisa_rolle
Feb. 5th, 2010 08:09 am (UTC)
Your place is reserved! Elisa
cemeterywinter
Feb. 5th, 2010 03:20 pm (UTC)
I love your reviews, Elisa. You always seem to get to the "heart" of the characters. These three authors are among my favorites and I adored this book so I was happy to see that you enjoyed it as well.
cemeterywinter
Feb. 5th, 2010 03:21 pm (UTC)
Eeek. Forgot how Live Journal doesn't tell you who I am. LOL It's Lex Valentine the cemetery girl. :)
elisa_rolle
Feb. 5th, 2010 03:27 pm (UTC)
Don't worry Lex ;-) If you comment with an account, I can see the profile. Elisa
elisa_rolle
Feb. 5th, 2010 03:26 pm (UTC)
I had one confirm and two surprises with this one. Ethan Day was a confirm, I like everuything he writes, and instead William Maltese and Jason Edding surprised me, William being more romantic than ever and Jason with his sweet story. Elisa
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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