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A Vintage Affair by Josh Lanyon

Movies, books, wines, Josh Lanyon seems to have a penchant for everything is fashionable old, and in this specifically case, vintage. And his characters are everything than ordinary.

Austin Gillespie, former Calvin Klein model, current master of wine, is your typical wasp spoiled brat. His trouble growing up were not liking the expensive boarding school his father sent him, or having to renounce to his artistic inclination to follow his father's aspiration to see him as a committed reporter, possibly in politics, for sure not in something so trivial as a column on wine. So now middle twenty Austin has the classic life crisis, who he is, what he wants, where he is headed. But in a way or the other, the only sure thing is that Austin has never had any trouble for being gay, he was “allowed” to be and no one is asking him to change, even if his family don’t arrive to approve, at least they accept.

In the South for doing an appraisal on a wine cellar of an old mansion, Austin has the feeling to being in another world and another time. Everyone is living someone else expectation and it’s difficult to understand the real identity of who he has in front. Take Jefferson Brady for example: handsome scoundrel with a southern charm, or a man with an hidden agenda? Austin has no time to answer the question that a dead man appears in the cellar and he is stuck in the little town with nothing to do if not accepting Jeff’s invite to dinner.

Jeff is plenty living the double identity everyone seems to like there in the South: when he is alone with Austin he is the perfect lover, charming and full of compliments for Austin, arriving to reveal that Austin is Jeff’s dream date when he was in college and he was dreaming (and maybe doing something else) on some fashion magazine with Austin’s imagine on it. But when they are among other people, he is the Don Juan everyone is expecting him to be, even if probably no one is really believing to his lie… but the important thing is to maintain the appearance.

Since Austin is not exactly a righteous man, and it’s not like he is an innocent and Jeff is taking advantage of the situation, I didn’t really feel pity for how Jeff was treating him, at least not the first time. In a way, being both of them part of the lucky, and wealthy, gens, they were a little less sympathetic. But in the end Austin was only searching for love, and he was doing it with dignity, not imploring Jeff’s attention or trying to “turn” him gay. What Jeff does to him, involving him in his farce of life, trying to prove his point that sex is sex, no matter with whom you are doing it, made him the villain in this story. I didn’t exaclty cheer for him, and according to me Austin was too kind and comprehensive with him.

Even if there is a dead man, and supposedly a mystery involving 4 high valued bottles of wine, A Vintage Affair was more a romance than a mystery. The poor dead man was so insignificant, and no one cared for him, that I sometime even forgot his existence. Even Jeff, from his private investigator position, seemed more interested in trying to lure Austin in his net, than finding who was the murderer. And sincerely Austin was little interested in finding the bottles of wine and even less in knowing who was the killer, and more interested in understanding if Jeff could have been his true love.


Amazon Kindle: A Vintage Affair

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( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 19th, 2010 10:09 pm (UTC)

Hi, Elisa!

I'm still delighted thinking of ''A Vintage Affair''.

In fact before reading it I was a bit worried there would be much technicalities about wine and wine tasting, but I should have known it wouldn't be the case: till now I never met a Josh Lanyon's story I didn't like ;-).

Thank you for your review!



Sep. 19th, 2010 10:17 pm (UTC)
for me it was an unexpected romance, meaning that I didn't expect to like it for being a romance, and I was pleasently surprised.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


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