Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 67,000 words
Cover: Aaron Anderson
BlurbA monster moves through the night, hidden by the darkness, taking men, one by one, from Seattle’s gay gathering areas.
Amid an atmosphere of crippling fear, Thad Matthews finds his first true love working in an Italian restaurant called the Blue Moon Café. Sam Lupino is everything Thad has ever hoped for in a man: virile, sexy as hell, kind, and… he can cook!
As their romance heats up, the questions pile up. Who is the killer preying on Seattle’s gay men? What secrets is Sam’s Sicilian family hiding? And more importantly, why do Sam's unexplained disappearances always coincide with the full moon?
The strength of Thad and Sam’s love will face the ultimate test when horrific revelations come to light beneath the full moon.
From the moment Thad stepped through the front door of the Blue Moon Café, the décor cleared up any mystery about what kind of food they served. The little café, with its mahogany bar along one wall, its grouping of maybe a dozen tables, and its faux-tin ceiling, could have been straight out of central casting for “Italian joint.” Thad saw the requisite checkered tablecloths, the oil paintings of Italian landmarks like the canals of Venice, the Coliseum, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and St. Peter’s Square. And yes, each table sported a candle plugged into the opening of an empty green-glass Chianti bottle. A TV sat above the bar, thankfully turned off.
“Buona Sera” by Louis Prima played from the overhead speaker system. Thad was certain the rest of the evening would be peppered with the likes of Dean Martin, Jerry Vale, Rosemary Clooney, and of course, Sinatra. Underneath the music was the usual restaurant orchestra: conversation, laughter, the clink of glassware and the tinkle of silverware.
The scents of garlic, oregano, basil, and tomatoes perfumed the air. Over a counter at the rear of the restaurant, Thad could see into the kitchen: a wood-burning oven, chefs busy at their stations, the occasional upsurge of flame as one of them poured alcohol into a pan and ignited it by tipping the pan. Thad’s mouth began to water.
He already liked this place.
And he liked it even more when he saw the bartender, who was busy drying wineglasses and reaching up to hang them upside down on a rack above the bar. He was a compact little guy, olive skin and shaved head. His muscles tested the endurance of the black T-shirt he wore, and even from his vantage near the hostess stand, Thad could make out the thick black five o’clock shadow that covered his jaw. He was just the kind of guy Thad fantasized about. One who would take him roughly and be in charge.
Stop it, now! I’m in Green Lake, not Capitol Hill. This guy probably has a wife and two kids at home and would not appreciate how I’m imagining how he would look should the seams of that tight T-shirt burst and reveal a defined and hairy chest. He wouldn’t cotton at all to my thoughts of wondering how his asshole would taste, for cryin’ out loud.
Or maybe he would….
Thad grinned and bounced up and down a couple of times on his heels, feeling strangely energized and definitely a little smitten.
Shut up, horndog. Behave yourself.
3 out of 5 (good)
Independent Reviewer for Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!
Jumping straight in, because I'm not really sure I liked this book. I DID finish it, although it was touch and go.
What I DID like about it, is that we heard from the whodunnit type person, which is kinda vague, I know, but if you read the book you'll understand what I mean. You know I love hearing from the bad guy, or guys, plural, in this case. And while its . . . . .messy . . . reading, its good reading.
For almost ALL the book, its Thad having a say. His friend Jared gets a couple of paragraphs, as well, as the aforementioned bad guys.
BUT! Sam ONLY gets a few lines! Had Sam had more of a say, I think I would have enjoyed it more. I wanted to know what he thought about Thad, about his son, and his sister. About who might be doing the murders, and about how Sam felt, when he learned (learnt?? I still cannot get that one right!) the horrible truth.
I did like that I didn't get who was doing the murders, not til it all became clear. Did enjoy being kept on my toes. But when the other bad guy steps up, that was immediately clear who that was.
I'm just not sure the story itself worked for me, or maybe it was Thad himself, since he gets the biggest say. I dunno.
But like I said, I did finish it, and I promised myself if I finish a book, it should get at least . . . . .
**same worded review will appear elsewhere**
* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *
Rick R. Reed is all about exploring the romantic entanglements of gay men in contemporary, realistic settings. While his stories often contain elements of suspense, mystery and the paranormal, his focus ultimately returns to the power of love.
He is the author of dozens of published novels, novellas, and short stories. He is a three-time EPIC eBook Award winner (for Caregiver, Orientation and The Blue Moon Cafe). He is also a Rainbow Award Winner for both Caregiver and Raining Men. Lambda Literary Review has called him, "a writer that doesn't disappoint."
Rick lives in Seattle with his husband and a very spoiled Boston terrier. He is forever "at work on another novel."
Stalk RickFacebook Page: www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks
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