June 19th, 2012

andrew potter

The Slayer's Apprentice by Zathyn Priest

This is the second book I read by Zathyn Priest and while I found some common elements, this one is not at all light and somewhat funny like the previous one. The common elements are: in both there is a very young character who was abused during his childhood; the relationship is between a very young man, barely eighteen, who still hasn't reached a steady adult behavior, and a older men, nearly thirty, with a good job and a reassuring and comforting attitude. There is obviously the push for the older man to take care and protect the younger man, even if all the evidences are against their relationship.

Phoenix is an eighteen years old boy with an abusive past. Since the first page the reader knows that Phoenix's real name is Dylan, and he is a boy kidnapped when he was 13 years old, and probably abused and taken in captivity from a serial killer, The Crucifix Slayer. The Police Department is somewhat guilty to not give so much importance to Dylan's case since he was a kid with attitude problems, and when he disappeared, they though he was a runaway kid. Now that he reappears, they don't know how to treat him: Phoenix is for sure a problematic man, he is a liar and a manipulative, but part of them want to justify his behavior due to all he passed through.

Phoenix is also taking care of Echo, another child the serial killer kidnapped when he was only one years old: when Phoenix manages to escape from his captivity, he took with him the little child, that now is a five years old who clearly is crazy for who he thinks is his older brother. While Phoenix is sharp and unpleasant with whom wants to approach him, he seems to be a perfect parent for the little kid.

Daniel is a cop who Phoenix meets when trying to pickpocket him. The man doesn't file a complaint against Phoenix, and instead begins to take care of him even before knowing that Phoenix is probably the only link they have to trace back a serial killer. Daniel arrives also to go against the book to allow Phoenix to do as he pleases, and more the book goes on more the reader realizes that Daniel is almost a puppet in the hands of Phoenix. Phoenix is not at all a positive character, he is for real a liar and he has not problem in using other people to do what he wants, even when he is using his "brother"... if he is doing so to survive or since he is real guilty as the serial killer, and not another victim... well you have to read the book to know.

The relationship between Daniel and Phoenix is not simply love; I'm not sure that there is love from any side of it: Daniel is clearly smitten from Phoenix, he is obsessed, but he is also a very good man, and so his obsession turns in deeply involvement and in a need to be of help; Phoenix has serious psychological problems and I don't believe that in his mental state he can really love someone. Phoenix needs to feel sure, to have someone around that protect him from the outside world, and Daniel is perfect in this role.

I have no problem to admit that I shed my share of tears reading the book, not a fountain, but in two or three moments it took me so much that I can't help it; it's not an easy read, Phoenix's psychological description is really good and it makes him a character that comes out in full dimension from the book; he is clearly the main and only protagonist of the book, all the other are only supporting him to shine.

Amazon: The Slayer's Apprentice
Paperback: 178 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace (June 19, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1477689613
ISBN-13: 978-1477689615

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

GayRomLit Ebook Giveaway: Heidi Cullinan - A Private Gentleman

I asked to all the authors joining the GayRomLit convention in Albuquerque in October (http://gayromlit.com/authors.php) a personal favor, a special Ebook Giveaway: every 2 days I will post 1 book from each author, and among those who will leave a comment, I will draw a winner. Very easy and very fast ;-) I will send a PM to the winner, so remember to not leave anonymous comments!

And the ebook giveaway goes to darksolace, please contact me

Today author is Heidi Cullinan (http://www.heidicullinan.com/)

A Private Gentleman by Heidi Cullinan
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (February 14, 2012)
Amazon Kindle: A Private Gentleman

To seal their bond, they must break the ties that bind.

Painfully introverted and rendered nearly mute by a heavy stammer, Lord George Albert Westin rarely ventures any farther than the club or his beloved gardens. When he hears rumors of an exotic new orchid sighted at a local hobbyist’s house, though, he girds himself with opiates and determination to attend a house party, hoping to sneak a peek.

He finds the orchid, yes…but he finds something else even more rare and exquisite: Michael Vallant. Professional sodomite.

Michael climbed out of an adolescent hell as a courtesan’s bastard to become successful and independent-minded, seeing men on his own terms, protected by a powerful friend. He is master of his own world—until Wes. Not only because, for once, the sex is for pleasure and not for profit. They are joined by tendrils of a shameful, unspoken history. The closer his shy, poppy-addicted lover lures him to the light of love, the harder his past works to drag him back into the dark.

There’s only one way out of this tangle. Help Wes face the fears that cripple him—right after Michael finds the courage to reveal the devastating truth that binds them.
andrew potter

Equilibrium by Meredith Shayne

This was a very nice novel above all for the outskirts feeling. If not for the use of machines and the tales of life in the big city Sydney, the way of life in small town Burreela was like that of 50, maybe even 100 years before. People know each other, everyone has at least a brother, a cousin, a friend, who was in school with the neighbour, and even the smallest secret is actually the talk of the town. Michael is a graduate vet student who knows he has to change his life; a drug addicted and party boy when he was in Sydney, probably due to the refuse he received from his own father when he came out to them, Michael decides to detached himself from temptation accepting the position of assistant vet in Burreela. What Michael didn’t expect maybe is that most of the work is farm work, and Michael finds himself spending day after day travelling from farm to farm, and above all he meets Ryan, who owns an horse ranch and who is very interested in Michael, and not for his vet skills.

Ryan was a former Sydney police officer who came back in Burreela to help his brother and father; he doesn’t vent him being gay, but his family knows and Ryan is also at a point in life when he would love to be in a commitment relationship; what a convenience that the new guy in town is obviously gay and unattached. Ryan sets out to slowly wooing Michael into his life and bed.

As I said I liked the feeling of the story, it was slow paced but nice, Michael and Ryan meet but don’t immediately fall in bed, letting the reader, and probably Michael, adapt to the new event, so that, when the fact will happen, both of them are ready and primed.

The incursion of modern life, i.e. evil big city, is sudden and almost frightening, Michael will understand that his self-imposed exile is also his safe-shelter, and that there is nothing in the big city that he cannot find in small town, on the contrary, small town has more options for him than any other place in the world.

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=2383

Amazon: Equilibrium
Amazon Kindle: Equilibrium
Paperback: 212 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (June 24, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1615819509
ISBN-13: 978-1615819508

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

Lunatic Fringe (Tales of the Pack, Book 1) by Allison Moon

I’m not really familiar with lesbian novel, but I wanted to give to Allison Moon a try, for various reason, one of which is that she was named a Lambda Literary Foundation Emerging LGBT Writers Fellow and Lunatic Fringe is her first novel. I’m happy I give her this chance, since, while for sure there is a lesbian theme, a love story between Lexie and Archer, this is mostly a story that could appeal to many different readers.

I had the feeling there was a feminist message underneath, Lexie going to college and facing a new life, was also her growing into an independent woman; maybe her doing so in an unconventional way was a message for the female reader that you can reach your targets even if you don’t align to what is expected from you.

I did like also the love story, I also liked that it was not the main focus of Lexie, as it’s proven by the end. I’m not sure this is the final point between Lexie and Archer, being this a first book in a series, maybe there is still space for some evolution in their story, for sure what Lexie will accomplish at the end of this story, is to reach a self-consciousness of herself and of what is in her power to do with her life.

There are many references to the concept of Mother Nature, the Moon as biological clock, ancient myths all centered around the imagine of the woman as main creator (even Archer’s work as carpenter and the same author’s name). For that reason I said I read a feminist message underneath, and for that reason I think that was the main focus of the author.

Amazon: Lunatic Fringe (Tales of the Pack, Book 1)
Amazon Kindle: Lunatic Fringe (Tales of the Pack, Book 1)
Paperback: 300 pages
Publisher: Lunatic Ink (September 14, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0983830916
ISBN-13: 978-0983830917

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