A former police officer turned private investigator, Nick Nowak is haunted by his abrupt departure from the department, as well as, the traumatic end of his relationship with librarian Daniel Laverty. In these three stories set in Chicago during the early eighties, Nick locates a missing young man for a mysterious client, solves a case of arson at a popular nightspot, and goes undercover to prove a dramatic suicide was actually murder.
When he isn't detecting, and sometimes when he is, Nick moves through a series of casual relationships. But his long suppressed romantic side surfaces when he meets Detective Bert Harker. Will he give love another chance? Or, will he continue to bury himself in the arms of strangers?
Finalist for Lambda Literary Award - Gay Mystery 2012
©2009 Marshall Thornton (P)2013 Marshall Thornton
If you like hard-boiled PI stories (think Raymond Chandler) and centering on the gay community you will like this series. there is no romance in this book - but there is sex. Sex that is just as grim and gritty as the story they are set in.
the author writes about life just before the beginning of the AIDS epidemic before people thought of casual sex as deadly. i know the history but for some reason it didn't strike me so much until reading this series. maybe because it's set in chicago, in the neighborhoods where i spend the most time. but anyway these stories are mostly fun, sexy mysteries with a serious back drop.
did i already say this? i loved reading a book set in chicago that never once mentions downtown or, god forbid, navy pier. in fact, they are set back when navy pier was just an old pier and not a tourist circus.
Nick is definitely a man of the 1980's and the story reads as though told by a man from that generation... So there is no anachronistic shock to deal with; we have smoking, drinking, unprotected sex (as AIDS was still ahead) and a dour attitude towards policing in Chicago. All in all a great listen/read.
I believe Brad Langer as Nick so the narration works well.
I believe Nick as a PI so the story base works well.
Yes, I'll read again. Also, adding the rest of the series to my TBR pile.
I really tried to like this series, it is just too gritty PI for me. I am sure there are folks who will love this series. Folks who are into noir will dig this, it just isn't my genre.
The detective is a tough as nails type. Replace the doxy gals with guys, cause it is an MM read. That wasn't a real issue for me, but I know some who are not into the genre.
There is open bedroom door steam, not quite as detailed as an erotic but plenty of naughty bits. I just found those interactions as more rough and tumble as well. I like sweet words and feelings in my steam.
I listened to the audiobook narrated by Brad Langer, who does a great job with the material. He has a wonderful gruff edge to his voice that perfectly fits the material. I would love to hear him read another smexy book, cause his voice is delicious. His pace is smooth and he adds great energy to the narration.
Overall this was a good read, just not my taste. I think people who are into the genre will really appreciate the quality of the writing.
Disclosure – I received this audiobook in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts opinions and ratings are my own.
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I don't do re-read normally. I have a re-read shelf, but it has more a symbolical character, it's a way to show how much I enjoyed a book. Well, I did a re-read already but it is a big exception.
I am not sure that listening to an audio book after you've already read a book falls in the category re-read.
I think that if a narrator doesn't match you, you might even regret to listen to it. But if he does it perfectly, it could be a great experience that opens totally new perspectives. I wish I could have more of audio books, in the first place of the books I like, but the English audio books are unfortunately so ridiculously expensive in Germany, that I'd most likely won't have too many of them.
A narrator Brad Langer and Nick Nowak's POV fit PERFECTLY together, and I just want to say, that my second READ -actually it was listening to- of Boystown series, when I know already how it goes on, was not less thrilling but even more exciting.
I. LOVE. BOYSTOWN.
This was interesting. It was set in the 80's, so there was a totally different attitude towards gay people, no condoms were used ever, and the word fidelity meant nothing. The MC was having sex with everyone he came across and plenty of vaseline was used!
Overall, it was entertaining and the narration was ok.
I was excited to find a new "hardboiled" PI series. Fourteen minutes into the book, I'm listening to male on male sex wondering why it is so hard to find a good book that leaves the body parts out. I'm not interested in his sex life or anyone else's in that amount of detail. I'm going to miss out on this series because I don't want to be in Nick's bedroom.
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