The holidays! I hope you all had a grand time, didn’t get too hungover and Santa brought you exactly what you wanted. Especially if he brought you books!
By my count it’s a month since I last signed up to the Seductive Studs ‘n’ Sirens Blog Hop, a weekly event where writers of LGBT fiction display excerpts of their work. Most of the authors are very competent and successful writers of erotica, particularly of fiction with an element of kink to it so click the link in the little graphic over to the left there and knock yourself out. I don’t write erotica, and my guys are pretty unseductive, so instead of posting excerpts I post book recommendations.
I have read a LOT over the past month and have several highlights, all of which really deserve a separate post of their own but I’ll conflate them here and try to get back into routine for next week.
First up – Tinsel Fish by Harper Fox, a sequel to Once Upon a Haunted Moor that expands upon the relationship between village police constable Gideon Frayne and psychic Lee Tyack. Lee picks up a strong message at a public demonstration of his psychic abilities – “Tinsel Fish” – a message that damages him both physically and emotionally. Faced with rumours of strange disappearances, the erratic behaviour of his new lover, and the re-entry into his life of a family member who may be more of a help than a hindrance, Gideon’s patience and integrity is stretched to the limits. If you haven’t read Once Upon A Haunted Moor you really should. Both books are fabulous, filled with a terrific sense of place, quirky and memorable characters, pin sharp descriptions of the Cornish countryside and a brooding sense of menace. Fox seems to be setting up this series as individual episodes with an over-arching plot and I can’t wait for the next instalment.
Next – Irregulars by Nicole Kimberling, Josh Lanyon, Astrid Amara and Ginn Hale is a collection of 4 separate short stories some of which feature the same characters, set in a world where all the odd things in stories exist and NATO has set up a division, the Irregulars, to deal with the interspecies conflicts. I have to admit to being drawn to the book by Josh Lanyon but all 4 authors deliver the goods as far as I’m concerned. Romance readers take note – while each story concerns a M/M pairing there’s a lot of focus on crime fighting, politics, magic, action and some fairly gruesome stuff. If you need a lot of gazing into each others eyes, talking about feelings and pages of boinking I’d really try reading something else. But if you like romp along plot in an exciting and scary world plus some very poignant and loving relationships then I think you’ll love this one. What’s not to love about a character called Half-Dead Henry?
Another series here – Separate Ways by Laura Harner, the first of which, Continental Divide, was co-written with Lisa Worrall. I really enjoy Lisa’s work so bought the first in the series and was blown away by aristocratic DI Jamie Mainwaring and his collaboration with boorish American detective Remington as they investigate an international ring of paedophiles. Another warning for romance readers – it’s a 4 book series and the HEA will be a long time coming! But the tension between Jamie and Remington and their other lovers just makes the desperate situations all the more intense. I suspect that the police procedural elements are about as accurate as the FBI stuff in the Cut and Run series but the stories have such pace that I willingly suspend my disbelief. Also the bonkage is quite explicit but doesn’t go on for so long that I start yawning and is generally plot, or relationship arc, relevant. There are some excellent secondary characters and actions actually have consequences that last. I’m not sure how long we have to wait for the 4th novel but I found them very satisfying stories even without the almost obligatory HEA.
And finally, episode three of The Pride has just been issued. This is a comic about a team of LBGT superheroes, written by Joe Glass from Treorchy about 30 miles away from where I live, and drawn and coloured by a team of very talented artists. Yes it has a message – ie that you don’t have to be straight to be a hero – but it’s good fun as well and Glass is setting it up for plenty of conflict in future episodes. You can buy it on paper or digitally here.