I love nothing better than sharing with y’all some extraordinary books I’ve discovered, all of them in the gay literature & fiction categories, with sub-genres in horror, thriller/suspense, erotica and even romance. Most are mashups, not exactly one or the other and, for me, that makes them deliciously challenging, fresh and worth reading.
In no particular order by author…
Scott Burkett sent me a book to review for GGR-Reviews, with the caveat, “I wonder what [she’s] gonna think about this one.” Challenge accepted. I downloaded it, took a quick peek one-ish in the afternoon. By four of the o’clock I was panting, eyes-on-stalks, and typing my review so fast I nearly drove the damn keys through the keyboard.
I mean… whoa nelly.
The tome that grabbed me by the short & curlies was Better the Devil You Know, a horror suspense erotica novella that merits triggers if that’s the way you roll. I don’t need, like or approve of the beasties, so I dove in and recognized from the get-go that here’s a writer in command of his craft, with outrageous storytelling skills, a swoon-worthy way with prose, and a clever plot line with evil subtext that will leave you thinking long after you finish the book. Scott hasn’t posted my review yet but I’m here to tell you… it had many stars attached. WHAT. A. RUSH.
And as is my way, when I find a writer to lust after, I buy everything in their catalog. After one-clicking my way into instant gratification nirvana (thanks Amazon, hope you enjoy my firstborn), I jumped into The Last Nights of The Frangipani Hotel (The Actor’s Circle Book 2), a lovely little romance that avoided the usual M/M romance tropes.
Next came the first of the Baal’s Heart series, Caged: Love and Treachery on the High Seas (Baal’s Heart Book 1). This had everything I look for in a high-powered, adrenaline-fueled, lust-driven fantasy adventure with three-dimensional characters I loved and hated.
Next up: The Complications of T (The Actor’s Circle Book 1). This actually was my first Bey Deckard title. I waxed euphoric over this one because it hit quite a few emo bullet points, given my son is in the process of transitioning to be my daughter. This one I called a bite-size bit of perfection. I think you will, too.
Between the Lines is the first book by this author I’ve read, and it certainly won’t be the last. It’s an ensemble tale of strangers coming together out of loneliness and a common core of being different.
Their past, present and futures are beautifully interwoven into a compelling story of connections and the unexpected nature of families we create.
I wrote: It is at once life affirming and soul-crushingly brutal. It parses the lives of people for whom life has not been kind. It explores the boundaries of the human spirit and the elusive nature of courage.
The author also writes horror. Suburban Legend is hugely atmospheric with enough gotchas to keep you turning the pages.
Like a Lover, Housemates Book #2 (standalone) was my first book by this author. It’s a straight-up romance—usually not my thing—but I was very impressed by the way the standard tropes were executed with panache, making the predictable outcome and the journey toward it enjoyable and really quite satisfying. The characters were unique, their voices authentic and quite individual, the scenes of affection smokin’, and the writing intelligent. There’s something very satisfying when you finish a book with a smile on your face. And I was grinning ear-to-ear!
I read Drama Queen (A Nick and Noah Mystery), a lighter read filled with humor and enough complexities to keep you turning the page. The author clearly knows of what he speaks on all matters theater, and the kind of authentic details he brings to the table in terms of characters and staging makes this immensely entertaining.
But what really blew me away was A Shooting Star—a sophisticated, enthralling and suspenseful tale with a gothic vibe and a multi-layered execution that will have you sitting up and taking notice. This is polished prose at its best. Intelligent writing, a thought-provoking plot and characters befitting the theater genre make A Shooting Star one of my favorite reads this year.
So there you have it dear readers. I’d love to hear your thoughts if you’ve read these books. And I’m always open for recommendations!
And don’t forget, if you find an author you like, spread the love…
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