Tag Archives: 2010s

Anger is a Gift, by Mark Oshiro

26 Oct
Illustrated cover for _Anger is a Gift_, with a young Black man facing away from the viewer and into the streets and buildings and smoggy pavements of a city. The seal of the Schneider Family Book Award is off to the side, and below that, "A beautiful and brutal debut" quote by Adam Sivera (author of, _They both die at the end_)

I bought this book on release, intending to read it soon after, and then life (and the world) got in the way.

Reader beware: this is a very hard book to read, because the line between fiction and reality is blurred. The cover quote that calls it “beautiful and brutal” is on the money. It is a story of love and loss and survival, of systemic racism and the routine police violence that kills hundreds of Black and Brown people in the U.S. every year.

Hundreds. Every year.

To say nothing of the many more people they wound every year, often leaving them disabled for life.

All with impunity.

Also, the protagonist is a gay teenage boy, with queer friends of all flavors, so if you have a problem with young people who do not fit a cis hetero binary, don’t bother reading further.

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“The Governess Affair” by Courtney Milan

28 Sep
A white woman with long, curly reddish brown hair, wearing a long bright yellow gown, looking down to the daisy corsage she's holding

This novella is a prequel to The Duchess War; it establishes one of the most important relationships for the hero of that novel, and thus is the first installment of the Brothers Sinister series, despite having been written a couple of years after the release of that book.

Reader, beware: backstory of physical abuse by a parent, backstory of rape, difficult sibling relationships, general trauma, and a most lovely scene of consent, seduction, and sex.

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Wolf Haven, by Lindsay McKenna

21 Sep
Cover for Wolf Haven shows a white man wearing a shearling coat, a stetson, and a bit of scruff. In the background, prairie, a barn, and horses at sunset.

This is my entry for SuperWendy’s TBR Challenge this month–the theme is animals, and I’m just going with the title here. (Just kidding; there’s a wildlife refuge thing happening, mostly on the side.)

Reader beware: graphic descriptions of torture and heavy PTSD; glorification of the U.S. military; racism through the “model minority” stereotype for Native Americans and the “hellscape drug narco territory” for Latin America; autistic child as inspiration porn; sex on the page.

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“A Kiss for Midwinter” by Courtney Milan

22 Aug
On a field of yellow gold, a dark haired young white woman wearing an off-the-shoulder white gown with a wide skirt, and white lace fingerless gloves. She's wearing a couple of poinsettia flowers on her updo, and looking to the side, with a knowing/flirty half-smile on her lips.

I have often talked about my love of Ms Milan’s novellas; for my money, she consistently writes some of the best in genre romance. Inevitably, I immediately realize I have reviewed so few of them (see footnote 1 for links). So for a change, here’s a re-read and a review.

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