Today I added the Books I’ve Enjoyed page to the Resources section of Romance for Men. This is in preparation for my doing reviews of the books I’m reading to learn more about the craft of writing high quality M/M fiction [and, of course, for my own enjoyment].
The first books I added come from two series: the Five Boroughs series by incredibly gifted and steamy author Santino Hassell, and the Cyberlove series, co written by Hassell and Megan Erickson (whose stand-alone works I haven’t yet read).
I don’t know whether I will review the first two sets of books. I would feel the need to re-read them (which wouldn’t be a great chore – I’ve already read Sutphin Boulevard twice). Whether I give them formal reviews or not, I recommend them all highly so I’ve given a little bit of information on them, below, with links to their Amazon pages.
I read the Five Boroughs series first and was blown away by the beautiful, evocative language and gritty charm of New York City.
- In Sutphin Boulevard, Michael Rodriguez and Nunzio Medici, mostly-openly-gay teachers at a queer-friendly high school in Brooklyn, find their long-time friendship becoming a little more than they bargained for against a very realistic background of personal struggle.
- In Sunset Park, Michael’s little brother, Raymond has a same-sex romance of his own with Michael and Nunzio’s whitebread, out-gay coworker David Butler. Can this relationship succeed between men who are as different as night and day?
- In First and First, we head very upscale to follow the story of upper-crust born and bred Caleb Stone and Oliver Buckley who discover their own struggles on the path towards love among the wealthy New Yorkers—and sex parties—of the Upper East Side.
Although each of the books could stand alone, I recommend reading them in order. The stories are linked and there is significant character development which happens throughout the entire series.
I then started to read the Cyberlove series, co-written with Megan Erickson. I just finished the first book in the series, Strong Signal, a highly satisfying read about what happens to the long distance relationship between deployed Army mechanic Garrett Reid and reclusive cyber-personality Kai Bannon. I enjoyed watching the sparks fly when their reltaionship suddenly becomes up-close and personal.
I have just started the second in the Cyberlove series, Fast Connection, where Dominic ‘Nikky’ Costigan, Garrett Reid’s “straight” hookup buddy from the army goes looking for another man-to-man hookup back home in the states. I’m one chapter in, but so far so good.
I’ll be adding more books I recommend with little blurbs about them as time goes on. When I do, I’ll announce those additions to the list on the blog, so stay tuned, subscribe, stay in touch and enjoy Romance for Men.