The Dreamer

The Dreamer by M. King

 

Horacio Valdez is a man of science. He has poured himself into forging a career, a life…and just hoping that, somehow, the rest will take care of itself. Loneliness has stalked him for years, and he has never fully mastered the art of connecting with others. Only in his dreams does Horacio know the comfort and closeness of another’s presence, but is the figure that haunts his nights completely benign?

When Horacio is forced to confront his dreams—and the beautiful, terrible creature at their center—the truth might just be more frightening than his reality has ever been.

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Foam Roller Boys

Foam Roller Boys by M. King

 

Brendan is adamant that there’s never been anything between him and his friend—no matter what the rest of the student body seems to think—but when Isaac insists he celebrates the end of their college years with a hedonistic night out, an unexpected encounter with a buff, bronzed stranger leaves Brendan wondering exactly what is bubbling up between them.

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Passing Shadows

Passing Shadows by M. King

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After serving six years for murdering his abusive father, Tommy Hawks is released from prison. He moves back in with what’s left of his family and tries to negotiate a new life with them and his partner, Brett, who has stood by him through everything. But moving on isn’t so easy.

Resentment simmers just below the surface, but so do gratitude and guilt. Brett and Tommy need to give each other the time and space to discover who they are individually, and Tommy especially needs the opportunity to stand on his own—even if that means another separation.

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REVIEW: Filth – Obsidian Bookshelf & Wildfire Top Pick

It’s a twofer! Filth gets a cracking review from Obsidian Bookshelf, and lands the coveted Top Pick from staff at OmniLit/AllRomanceEbooks.com, with a feature in their Wildfire newsletter.

Filth was reviewed by Val Kovalin of Obsidian Bookshelf!

Ms. Kovalin praised “the precise, gritty, realistic details … the deep unselfconscious love between the characters … fine writing, strong plotting, and good pacing.”

“This novel is unforgettable for its glimpse of lives lived on the edge of death, boundless love, and immense inner strength.”

Review snippet:

“Kel and Toni are two young gay men, perhaps about 20 or 21 years old, in an unspecified American city. They are passionately in love, and have been together for one year. They have a small apartment but are just one missed rent-payment away from homelessness. … Kel, who is emotionally stronger, earns most of their money as a prostitute. Toni has recently secured a safe, if low paying, bookstore job. Even though he knows he’s lucky to have the job, he has the emotional immaturity and air of entitlement that characterizes many young people, and it makes him habitually tardy and snippy with his boss. That right there is only one of many realistic details in the story that show how a kid living day-to-day in the shadow of total annihilation can grow too complacent to see the urgency of his situation.

… Toni and Kel’s sex scenes are very hot, passionate, and masculine. Throughout the book, Toni gets referred to with feminine pronouns maybe 50% of the time to reflect his internal confusion, but it’s so skillfully done that it didn’t distract me as a reader.

… The characters undergo some significant evolution and gain new knowledge about themselves and their relationship. It’s a solidly written story with a satisfying ending that has an ultimately uplifting feeling. Highly recommended.”

Read the full review here.

Update: Filth also featured as Ms. Kovalin’s Top Pick in AllRomanceEbooks.com’s Wildfire newsletter this month:

“Filth by M. King is an interracial romance centering on two gay boys living in an American city. Both have been homeless, abused drugs, and worked as prostitutes. One year ago, they met at a free clinic and started a passionate relationship, which has stabilized them through their deep love for one another. However, the black kid Kel, the main breadwinner, still works as a prostitute. The white kid Toni has recently decided that he wants to become a male-to-female transsexual through cut-rate treatments, such as hormone pills from Mexico, which are already changing him. His transsexual friend wants him to leave Kel.

Meanwhile, Kel struggles with his opposition to Toni’s transformation, a plan that Toni is too defensive to discuss, while trying to support Toni emotionally and financially. He already mourns the loss of Toni as a man, and worries that soon he won’t want Toni if Toni becomes too feminine. Meanwhile, he risks his life whenever he sells his body, especially since a predator is stalking young male prostitutes. However, we readers can see through their scorching hot sex scenes as well as their inner strength during crisis that these two are meant to be together.

Filth is a novel of stunning emotional power written in alternating third-person viewpoints from Kel and Toni. While my synopsis may make it sound depressing, it is actually an uplifting story about the power of love. Its straightforward, understated tone saves it from melodrama or self-pity, and gives it a gritty, yet restrained, authenticity.

… One of the striking things about this story is the author’s ability to show us readers the extreme danger that haunts every move that Toni and Kel make in their everyday lives – a true peril that the two of them, through their youth and through too much familiarity with hardship, have grown unable to sense. As with many homeless young people in the city, both live every day on the edge of complete annihilation, and it makes for a deeply suspenseful read for those of us who may want to scream at them wake up and save themselves (if they can). This is a must-read, beautifully written story about characters who may stay in your memory for years to come, and it’s my Top Pick for this month.”

~ Wildfire, Vol. 4, Issue 156

Filth

Filth by M. King

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Does gender really matter? Kel and Toni are two damaged people, both trying to find answers. But, where Kel’s hopes for the future lie mainly with outreach programs and a new life with his lover, Toni’s looking for absolution in a bottle of Mexican hormone pills.

Kel loves Toni obsessively and—though he supports both of them on the money he gleans from tricks and less-than-salubrious clients—he struggles with the reality of Toni’s burgeoning transition, and her motives for doing it.

While Kel grapples with his worries, and the attentions of regular client Michael, otherwise known as The Sherbet Pervert, Toni has different problems to face. Is there really a correct way to read women’s magazines? What about the manifold uses of maxi pads? And just what is this gender thing, anyway?

For all their attempts to build a life together, both Kel and Toni know their survival is precarious. What neither of them realize is just how easily their harsh, isolated little world can be turned upside down and, when chance events push them into unknown territory, both must confront some difficult truths.

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Breaking Faith

Breaking Faith by M. King
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Brett Derwent thinks he has life all planned out. With the freedom of college life just months away, Brett’s eagerly awaiting some fun and independence… until he meets Tommy Hawks. Over the course of one northern Montana summer, an intense romance blooms between the young men, but Tommy has a painful secret—one that even first love can’t mitigate. Continually brutalized by his violent father, Tommy is pushed to the edge, torn between the desire to protect his mother and four siblings, and his fear of losing the love he never expected to find.

When the unthinkable happens and Tommy’s father is found dead, Brett is afraid to learn the truth. Appalled to think that his lover may be responsible, Brett must face impossible questions: how much of his life—of his youth—is he willing to sacrifice for Tommy, and will having faith in him be enough?

 

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Tonight or Else

Tonight or Else by M. King

Every Cornishman comes into the world with the soul-deep knowledge that his land straddles the narrow shallows between the solid rocks of English practicality and the ocean of myth that lies beyond.

Jamie Tregellis has no time for old men’s tales; working at The Lamb Inn keeps him too busy even to pine for his lost love, Will Andrewartha, who’d split Jamie’s heart in two when he left to become a sailor. Will promised to come back for him, but Jamie had long since given up hope – until one night he hears a noise in the stableyard….

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REVIEW: Filth – Jay Lancaster

Genderqueer author Jay Lancaster reflects on a “wonderful, rich, tense and emotional” book.

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Filth by M. King
ISBN: 978-1-60054-449-1 (ebook)
Cover art: M. King
Length: novel / 68,000 words
Published by: loveyoudivine alterotica (2010)

Kel and Toni are two damaged people looking for answers. But, while Kel’s hopes for the future lie mainly with outreach programs, his lover’s searching for absolution in a bottle of hormone pills. Read more…

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Okay, no full-on reviews yet – give me a break, the book’s been out less than a week!

However, I am pleased to report that Filth made the 1RomanceEbooks newsletter, which regularly spotlights a small number of new releases, so thank you to the 1RE crew.

The fabulous editor and genderqueer author Jay Lancaster was also talking about Filth here and here.

Snippet:

“I have had the pleasure of editing some erotica lately which featured a gay couple, one of whom is in transition. Actually, erotica does not do justice as a description; the story is a wonderful, rich, tense and emotional one. With some shagging. Unlike porn, which is shagging with a loose “plot” somewhere in there. But the character undergoing transition is a proper, well rounded human being and experiencing trauma and doubt. It is possible that some may feel this does not portray the experience in a positive light. Well, surely it would be patronising to sugar coat the issue?”

When I get a minute, I’ll be uploading a post about this very point (bear with me – mad week) but, in the meantime, I suggest readers check out Jay’s blog.

http://jaylancaster.wordpress.com/

Great read, from a fascinating and talented writer.


Light and Water

Light and Water by M. King

Venice is supposed to heal Dan’s heart—not make him lose it all over again.

After a bad break-up, London photographer Dan wants time to himself in Italy’s glittering jewel. He’s not looking for a holiday fling but, when he meets shy, closeted schoolteacher, Cesare, neither man can deny their passionate attraction. As lust deepens into something more, can their romance outlast the suntan?

After breaking up with his boyfriend, London-based photographer Dan takes a trip to Venice. All he wants is a little time alone, and to lose himself in the city he’s dreamed of visiting for years. He isn’t looking for a holiday fling… until he meets shy, closeted schoolteacher Cesare. The attraction between them is undeniable but, as flirtation gives way to passion, both men are drawn to each other with an unexpected intensity.

Once the dreamy, hedonistic days of Venice are over, neither really wants to let the other go, but can the fantasy they lived ever become truly real? Keep Reading →