Boystown: Three Nick Nowak Mysteries by Marshall Thornton ~ Audiobook Review by Queue

Title: Boystown: Three Nick Nowak Mysteries
Series: Boystown, Bk 1

Author: Marshall Thornton

Narrator: Brad Langer

Publisher: Self Published

Cover Artist: Unknown

Story Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Narration Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars
Overall Rating: 4.75 of 5 Stars

Release Date: 08/28/2013

Length: 05 hours 48 minutes

Genre: Action/Adventure, Crime Fiction, Gay Fiction, Mystery/Thriller


A former police officer turned private investigator, Nick Nowak is haunted by his abrupt departure from the department, as well as, the traumatic end of his relationship with librarian Daniel Laverty. In these three stories set in Chicago during the early eighties, Nick locates a missing young man for a mysterious client, solves a case of arson at a popular nightspot, and goes undercover to prove a dramatic suicide was actually murder.

When he isn’t detecting, and sometimes when he is, Nick moves through a series of casual relationships. But his long suppressed romantic side surfaces when he meets Detective Bert Harker. Will he give love another chance? Or, will he continue to bury himself in the arms of strangers?

Finalist for Lambda Literary Award – Gay Mystery 2012

Story Review:

This is not your mother’s mystery and that’s why I loved the stories here.

This book is reminiscent of  older, hard-boiled private investigator mysteries. You know where the PI solved mysteries while going through casual relationships with various woman. That’s Nick Nowak, only he doesn’t sleep with a number of women. Here it’s man after man. Sometimes it’s connected to the case and sometimes it’s not. Sometimes it’s not a bad idea to mess around and other times it absolutely is. And that’s one of the things that makes it realistic. A horny, single gay man who takes advantage of the opportunities presented to him. Nick makes bad choices both in bed and out.  The amount of sex may not be needed for the story but it didn’t detract from it at all.

The mysteries here are well constructed and intrigued me from the get go. The final denouements made sense and there weren’t any eye roll moments, which happens often with mysteries. I liked that these weren’t huge, high-level threat mysteries, but instead ones that could happen in real life.

I’ve never read (or listened to) anything else by Thornton but I will remedy that very soon. He has casual writing style that draws you in and doesn’t let you go.

If you like mysteries I’d recommend this book. Keep in mind this is not romance and doesn’t claim to be.

Narration Review:

Brad Langer did a pretty good job here. I thought his speaking style matched Thornton’s low-key writing style. There were times his voice was a little monotonous and could’ve used a little more verve to match the action but overall he had an enjoyable voice.


Boystown: Three Nick Nowak Mysteries on Goodreads
Self Published
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA

I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the audiobook of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.

Farewell Giveaway
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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