France, 1916. The Great War. High above the carnage in the trenches, British and German aces joust like knights of old for control of the skies. The strain and tension of living every day on the edge of death leads to dangerous choices and wild risks. When British ace Bat Bryant's past catches up with him, he strikes out in panic and kills the man threatening him with exposure. But there's a witness: the big, handsome American pilot Cowboy Cooper.
Cowboy, it seems, has his own ideas of rough justice.
©2011 JustJoshin Publishing, Inc (P)2014 JustJoshin Publishing, Inc
Warning: Spoilers ahead
I thought this book is hot, that and well, heartbreaking. It's about World War I after all. The story revolved around British flying ace Bat Bryant whose lover Gene perished during one of their missions, and how he accidentally killed their mechanic Sid Orton, who threatened him with exposure.
This book had been sitting in my audible for months as I was too nervous to read this. Because. Murder. No matter how accidental it is still murder. I know, I know, it is fiction. Still, I worried for the main character.
Then of course there was the war. The pilots drop dead faster than the flies and that's saying something. Most often they lasted a day on the job then they'd be replaced by others who get replaced as well later on. Such a vicious cycle but that's war for you.
As the story went deeper I dreaded the coming of a new day, because I knew another pilot will die. And that's how good of a writer Josh is, he brings the readers right into the middle of the action, make them feel dread, make them experience the war, albeit vicariously.
I also loved the characters but I loved Cowboy the most. He's smokin' sexy. I could tell right away he was in love with Bat.
And did I say this book is hot, hot, hot? ^__^
I had bought the ebook of this a while ago, but for some reason just couldn't get into it. Then I saw it on audiobook and thought I would try it. The narrator really brought it to life for me. The story was very well done. I've read a few books that were preachy about how difficult and dangerous it is to be gay, but this story just brought you into the characters and their circumstances and let the reality speak for itself. It was very powerfully and effectively done. The characters are compelling as is the time period.
This is a gay romance novel masquerading as a historical fiction. That's ok, except that I didn't purchase a romance novel, gay or otherwise, and had I known the actual intent of the author I would not have purchased it. Fair warning, in case you're in the mood to listen to a good WWI air war story and instead fly right into this little novella which is much more about cheesy descriptions of hot man-love than dog-fights. No, I didn't finish it, but in the first chapter one stereotypical man loses his secret lover in a dog fight only to end up in the arms of another stereotypical character and that's all I needed to hear.
I wish there were more of a reference to the subplot in the description for those of us not interested in a gay romance novel.
"Lovely story, dubious British accents"
This is one of my favourite JL stories, full of unspoken words and repressed loneliness. It is set in the middle of the first world war, when the average life expectancy of an aviatior was eleven days. I do feel the narrator struggled with the English accents of the piece. His voice is lovely, but he clearly struggled with the pinched upper class accents the characters speak in in my head. Despite that an enjoyable listen and I won't be put off listening again.
"Lovely short piece"
Another enjoyable narration of one of Josh Lanyon's books. A vignette of what life could have been like as a pilot in WWI, open ended but happy for all that.
Some of the pronunciation threw me e.g. US lieutenant rather than UK left-tenant but they were minor issues and not enough to rip me out of the story.
Will listen to this again as I like the characters of Bat and Cowboy.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.