Author: Colton Aalto
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 12/15/2016
Length: Short Story (<15K)
Genre: Fantasy, Gay Romance, Winter Holiday
Alec Ryder’s arrest in Aspen, early on the morning of December twenty-fifth, is the latest disaster in his series of unhappy Christmases. He’s dreaded the holiday since being subjected to endless church services as a child. Being kicked out on Christmas Day after he came out to his parents, followed by an improbable series of yearly yuletide trips to the emergency room, haven’t made his Christmases any merrier. But getting busted for prostitution is the worst catastrophe; it means Alec’s dream of a college degree is gone, replaced by the specter of jail time.
Just when Alec thinks things can’t get worse, Hayden Adler shows up to interrogate him. Hayden is a glamorous attorney who also happens to be Alec’s college roommate’s cousin. Alec’s had a crush on Hayden for years, but whatever miniscule chance Alec might’ve had is now history—just like the life he’s been trying to build for himself.
But things aren’t quite what they seem. In a long line of miserable Christmases, Alec will never forget this one, although not for the reasons he suspects.
A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2016 Advent Calendar “Bah Humbug.”
Ok I admit it. I liked this story despite myself. I honestly did not think I would. I am not generally a fan of the rent boy trope. I also did not think the attorney/rent boy thing could be pulled off. In the end Aalto proved me wrong, if only to myself.
I like Alec. He owns up to who he is and what he has done. He accepts that he is responsible for his actions and is ready to face the consequences. Hayden for his part is who he is. He owns up to his beliefs and is able to reconcile them with his job. I like seeing that maturity in the characters.
I can’t really say that Christmas had a ton to do with this story, other than as a time reference. This is more a story of two men finally facing the truth and finding each other. I would certainly be open to another story from this author.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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