I’m starting The Contortionist’s Handbook, by Craig Clevenger: I added this to the TBR and forgot that I’d already started on it years back, then abandoned it. I guess that counts as ‘currently reading’. The theme reminds me of Kate Millet’s ‘The Loony-Bin Trip‘ – the awareness that once you’re in the position of having to ‘prove’ sanity, or any other accusation/diagnosis with a circular argument – cf. alcoholism — then you’re pretty much fucked, that power is always going to be abused due to the nature of those who seek power in the first place.
Oh, The Loony-Bin Trip, what a wonderful book. A bit eye-watering regarding sexual imagery, though – sissies might need a quiet lie-down and a stiff g’n’t. Ride ’em, cowboy!
Well, Penn is a slave – still. But now he’s a pampered pet, now he’s the master’s darling. You’d think he’d be satisfied with that, that he’d be content. But is he? Well, perhaps he might be – if it wasn’t for Lettice and Benedict Parrin, the dangerously liberal and political wolves in his master and lover Ree’s circle. If it wasn’t that Ree’s mother, the old Dam of the Hotstaat pack, is trying to get him married off to a suitable wolf-girl. If it wasn’t for his nature, if he didn’t hate being a slave, if he didn’t long to be free… Is love enough to reconcile Penn to being a slave? Is he willing to risk capture and death, for the sake of freedom?
Set in an alternative universe’s 1920s, with wolves.
SEQUEL TO WOLF SLAVE, AVAILABLE FREE THROUGH KINDLE PRIME!
Image – Seton and Thompson, no known copyright restrictions.
Alex Ankarr is on page 228 of 544 of The Mammoth Book of Time Travel SF:
Finished Ellen Klages’ ‘Time Gypsy’, and for once the critics are right – pretty awesome. The MCs are really likeable, their gradually developing romance is touching and believable. (I say gradually, but – well, read it and find out.) The actual sex is a little clunky and clichéd – I said clichéd, people, not cliché, that’s right – but the romance is lovely.
But it’s not just a lovely lesbian romance with a little skipping up and down the decades thrown in. For a short story, it packs a lot of serious ideas and musings in there. How far the LGBTQ movement has come – and how far it hasn’t – in a few short decades. About time travel as a tool for plagiarism and stealing credit for other people’s ideas. About normalisation and minimisation of abuse of ‘other’ed and excluded groups. About the struggle of women to forge a place in the groves of academe, to be heard, to hack out a route through the hazing and silencing and double standards. About co-operation, solidarity, true friendship and fake collegiality.
It’s about time-travel itself, though, don’t forget that. And purely as a time-travel romp, it’s a ton of fun and lifts the heart, is joyful despite the seriousness of much of what’s discussed. If you love time-travel or you love (gay) love, this is a yes, this is a rec.
Image – public domain, photo by Bernard Spragg NZ of an artwork Passing Time by Auckland-based sculptor Anton Parsons.
Alex Ankarr is on page 214 of 544 of The Mammoth Book of Time Travel SF: The reviews are accurate for Ellen Klages’ ‘Time Gypsy’, at least – so far it’s trememendous!
(I did catch the neologistic typo before pressing ‘publish’. But I liked it, so there you go! It is trememendous!)
Lure by Tarynn Kerr
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Interesting ideas on fairy generation, nice relationship development between the MCs although a bit one-sided and hard to understand from the male MC’s point of view. Not a very good editing job, unfortunately. Constant tense issues that really should have been ironed out before publication, and other grammatical and punctuation problems too. Also ‘deplore’ used instead of ‘implore’ at one point, which gave a very odd flow to the character’s speech. Also dubious use of ‘literally’ at one point, an absolute last straw for me.
Still a nice story, though, and deserves a second edition with more rigorous quality control and better presentation. Lovely cover though.
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Image Harrison Cady, public domain.
I have a new title out, check it out! $1.29 on Amazon.com! FREE to read on Kindle Unlimited!
‘Hill Williams is a wolf who’s recently had a life-altering accident, rendering him paraplegic. Court Berkeley is a vampire who’s several hundred years old, old enough to know better than to go chasing after a younger wolf who’s already let him know he isn’t wanted. Hill’s pack disapproves of Court, and that was enough to break them up once. But the moon is full, and they’re both a little crazy, and playing at Romeo and Juliet (again) sure is an attractive idea… Short, approximately 3000 words.’
Image – Brehm, Alfred Edmund, 1829-1884; Pechuel-Loesche, Edward, 1840-1913; Haacke, Wilhelm, 1855-1912; Schmidtlein, Richard, no known copyright restrictions.
A Perfect Bloom 43 – Alex Ankarr
“Oh well, if that’s the issue,” Cory says easily. “I can easily think of something that will more than do.” And his hand is still in Sam’s hand – warm, how warm – as he leans up, leans forward and opens his mouth a little. Perhaps they make an odd, incongruous couple, Cory in made to measure tailoring, Sam in his overall with cap still in hand.
Neither of them are thinking about that much, as they kiss, most likely. And the rose is still held tight in Sam’s hand, as his other arm pulls Cory close. Gifts have been given, and their hearts stolen. And they still have two days of the week to come, a weekend free together, the two of them and a stolen rose.
© Copyright Alex Ankarr 2014
No unauthorised reproductions allowed. All rights reserved to the author. No inspirations for characters drawn from real-life individuals, no resemblance to real individuals intended.
Photo credit: Bonita Suraputra (https://www.flickr.com/photos/21185968@N00/3428731883/in/photolist-6dZ9wX-6e1HhW) via a Creative Commons licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/legalcode), book cover modifications made.