October 9th, 2010

andrew potter

Amaranth & Ash by Jessica Freely

Well, this is for sure an author, and a novel, that was very lucky with its cover. Just looking at this cover I’d want to buy the book, no matter the genre. And well, even when I found out it’s a Fantasy, not exactly my preferred choice of reading, I read it anyway.

This is probably a book that lays in the middle, in every meaning of the word. It’s not strictly a gay romance, since actually, one character is bisexual, Ash, and the other is androgynous, with both sexes, man and woman. To tag it as “gay” you have to trust Amaranth’s words, and the simple fact that he identifies himself as a man. There is even a nice note at the beginning of the story where the author explains that for people like Amaranth she would have preferred to use the neutral pronouns of sie and hir, but it would have been difficult for the reader.

In any case, the world where Ash and Amaranth are living is strictly divided into castes. Ash belongs to the poorer one, the Chel, so lowlife class that they are believed to have not soul. Then there are the Pel, basically paid workers for the higher class of Elai. Above them all, or better cross, there the Vasai, the androgynous breed of Amaranth; they are both healers than prostitutes, since they were taught that they souls healing can be performed only through sexual contact. They are paid for what they do, but Amaranth is not satisfied of the nice apartment and warm clothes, he would like to really touch the souls or at least one soul.

When he finds a battered Ash on a cold night, he immediately understand two things: that what he was taught was wrong, since not only Ash has a soul, but he can also heal him without sex, and second that, if he doesn’t bring him home, Ash will be dead in the morning.

The difference in caste is not only political, Chel, Pel and Elai are different also in their body structure, with Chel being the smaller of them all. On the other side, Vasai are the taller of them all, and so, it’s quite strange to see the tall and lean Amaranth takes care of Ash as he was a little child, cuddling him in his lap. But aside from this, with Amaranth being the only one with also the female sex, he is for everything else considered the woman in the story. And yes, here there is for sure a man in a woman body, but also a woman in a man body, Amaranth is both of them. But even if Amaranth considers himself a man, he is kinder and more compassionate of most men, he has, in a way, the attitude of a Mother, who wants to heal all her children.

Once Ash is recovered, he will play the role of the man, but again, his attitude towards Amaranth is of respect and worship, he considers Amaranth like a precious jewel, someone who at first he thinks to have nothing in common. But as Ash will understand, and say to Amaranth, both of them are forced to do things they don’t like, they are forced in restriction they don’t feel. From the exact opposite of their world, they will find a common ground in the middle, and while the world around them will be upset by the change, they will basically walk away, letting other deal with it, while they will build an unlikely family together.


Amazon: Amaranth and Ash

Amazon Kindle: Amaranth and Ash

Reading List:

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

Cover Art by P.L. Nunn
andrew potter

Times Square Cutie by Mykola Dementiuk

As almost all the production by Mykola Dementiuk, Times Square Cutie is set in a lost and forgotten New York City, a place that, even if in broad daylight, it seemed to be always in the shadows, dirty and smelly, apparently with a danger behind each corner. Thinking at today NYC is like thinking to fashion and exclusivity, writing of that NYC is writing about desperate men and women, trying to reach the end of the day with something to eat and a roof atop your head; most of the time, the roof is always different, and what you wear is all your possession.

Billy is a transvestite young guy who wants to change his life, maybe or maybe not; he is tired to be used and abused, and for once he would like to be the one in power. When he meets Rebecca, a girl with a big heart, but with some missing wheels in her brain, he decides that he will be the one to take advantage of the situation. Sure, it’s not nice from his side, Rebecca is obviously not totally aware of what she is doing, but in the end Billy is doing nothing more than what many other men before him did, and, well, he is probably a lesser evil than most. Only that a not so innocent but mostly harmless game will take a dark turn, and the result for both Billy than Rebecca will be tragic.

This is probably a little piece of recent history, a novella describing lost time, lost people, lost hope; is Billy a victim or a villain? Maybe both, maybe none of them. Billy is like all the other characters from Mykola Dementiuk, older before his age, a young man that will probably not see his old age, unless he doesn’t leave NYC, since that city is like a trap; but that same city is also the only place where someone like Billy can live, even if it will be a short life.


Amazon Kindle: Times Square Cutie
Publisher: Sizzler Editions (October 9, 2010)

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

Adopt a Movie: Abrupt Decision - Film Stills

Release: Spring 2011

Genre: Drama

Silly Bunny Pictures: http://www.SillyBunnyPictures.com

with: Steve Callahan, David LaDuca, Cynthia Schiebel, Jacquelyn Lies, Peggy Mae Binn, Paul Bright, Matthew Charles Burnett

Screenplay: Paul Bright

Directed by: Paul Bright

Production: Silly Bunny Pictures

Plot: Denis went into the office Friday morning. Ten minutes later he was fired and his entire world changed. After twenty years of dedicated service to an indifferent company he knew there has to be more to life than this. A stray dog in the park opened his eyes.


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andrew potter

Adopt a Movie: Finding Mr. Wright - Publicity Shoot Photos

Website: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1619281/

With: Matthew Montgomery, David Moretti, Rebekah Kochan, Jason Stuart, Scotch Ellis Loring, Edward Gusts, Rasool Jahan, Evan Miller, Ryan Anthony, Cameron Cash, George Moreno

Screenplay: Jake Helgren

Directed by: Nancy Criss

Production: Nancy Criss, Tracy Wright & Matthew Montgomery

Plot: Montgomery will star as Clark Townsend, an ambitious, serious-minded talent manager who is forced to attend a wilderness therapy retreat weekend to save his disastrous, Hollywood-starlet (Kochan) client’s career, and who has no clue he is about to fall unexpectedly head over heels for her new, awkward, fun-loving life coach, Pearce Wright (Moretti).


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andrew potter

Three Wrong Turns in the Desert by Neil Plakcy

I don’t know if that was intentional but I found this novel by Neil Plakcy quite funny and light. Apparently an adventurous story, Aidan Greene, English teacher who finds himself in the middle of an anti-terroristic action in the Desert, is not exactly the hero you would expect.

Aidan is running away from a broken heart and a monogamous relationship lasted 11 years. In Tunisia waiting for a teaching job to start, he meets Liam, a former Navy SEAL who survives with odd jobs as bodyguard. As Aidan is not your typical hero man, so is Liam: he mistakes Aidan for the man he has to protect, and while he is drinking wine with him, the other one is killed in the street outside the bar.

In a way or the other, the two of them end up together, trying to accomplish a mission that apparently no one asked them to pursue. Instead of using hi-tech gadgets or secret connections, they mix up with a group of tourists in a bus up and down unlikely stops.

I liked both characters: Aidan is a former globetrotter, and probably also an easy lay, who spent the last 11 years being a kept boy for a wealthy businessman; when he had no more the age, and maybe also bored by what his life had become, Aidan ran away searching for the same adventures he had when he was still a pretty and young boy. He has no more the age, and the body, but nevertheless he tries the role. Liam on the other hand has the right training, and sometime I felt like he was trying really hard to be in the role, but I have always felt like what he really wanted was the white fenced little cottage Aidan has just left behind.

Aidan and Liam are apparently completely different, but in the end they are searching the same thing. For this reason they rightly click together from moment one, and even if they were running away from both killers and policemen, not knowing who to trust, I have always had the idea that what they would really like was to be the sweet and cute couple of American tourists they were pretending to be. Strange was, Liam has never asked to Aidan to stay with him, but it was obvious that this was not a passing adventure and that for Aidan would have been impossible to go back to his ordinary life once the adventure was over.

Aidan and Liam are not young or inexeperienced, and so sex between them was always easy and good. Even if Aidan has spent the last years being an apparently reserved and quite middle class man, his young years of freedom are still simmering, and when he meets Liam he is more than ready to awake again his passionate nature. True, sex with Liam is good and without strings attached, but I think that in the end, it’s so good since both Aidan than Liam has recognized in each other a soul mate.


Amazon: Three Wrong Turns in the Desert

Amazon Kindle: Three Wrong Turns in the Desert

Reading List:

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