Gay and Single... Forever?: Book Review

by underdarkness

Gay and Single...Forever?: 10 Things Every Gay Guy Looking for Love (and Not Finding It) Needs to Know

What exactly is this book? Well, it's a book with a rather lengthy title. Other than that, it's exactly what you think it is; advice on dating... and coincidently, not dating if you don't want to. In a world where single gay men are the new "pariahs," gay men tend to feel guilty when they are alone.

"Being gay and single is the new smoking," playwright Paul Rudnick has said. "It won't be socially acceptable anymore, and you will have to go outside."

Though I cannot say that I enjoyed reading this book as much as I would have if I were reading, say... Star Wars, or something more suitable for an eighteen year old, I must say that it was incredibly methodical and detailed. Steven Bereznai mixes a gripping social commentary brilliantly with a guide to a gay man's love life... or lack thereof.

Dante's Cove Second Season: DVD Review

by dykehalo

Dante's Cove Season 2: DVD Review

Dante's Cove Season 2 can be described as a campy soap opera with interesting characters. If you imagine Charmed meets Queer as Folk, The L Word and Buffy the Vampire Slayer you begin to get a picture of what Dante's Cove is. It's a supernatural, dramatic, mystery, thriller, horror show with countless hot, graphic sex scenes and lots of male full-frontal nudity.

I had never viewed a single episode of the first season so the summary at the beginning of the first episode was a thorough yet fast and clear which I found very helpful as well as Jeff's review of Season 1.

Kevin is the "hot young guy" of the show. Everyone wants him but very few can have him. Kevin is living and dating Toby. Toby is Kevin's "Sugar Daddy" buying and paying for everything and never asking for anything in return except love and sex.

Rock Haven: Movie Review

By Jeff Walsh

Rock Haven is a simple story of a young boy having to rectify his religious beliefs with his sexuality. There isn't much of a subplot, plot twist, or surprise in the entire movie, just a simple story well told.

Brady recently moved to the California coast, where he reflects on his spirituality along the picturesque coastline. He plans to go a religious college in the fall; his Bible is always close at hand. His mother plans to start a religious school.

One day, while walking along the beach, he sees his hot, sculpted neighbor Clifford (Owen Alabado) shirtless, standing on the rocks near the beach. Brady immediately retreats home, obviously discomforted by the sight.

Rick & Steve the Happiest Gay Couple in All the World : TV Review

By Jeff Walsh

"Rick & Steve the Happiest Gay Couple in All the World" is the latest from Q. Allan Brocka, who seems to have his hand in nearly everything good that's gay these days. The show, which will air on LOGO beginning July 10 and comes out on DVD in late August, is pretty much an animated version of Lego, if your Legos went really gay, campy, and had a lot of bitchy things to get off their chests.

The show takes place in West Lahunga Beach where Rick and Steve are DINKing it while trying to sort out their long term relationship issues. They have regular dinners with a lesbian couple, Kirsten and Dana, who are on a quest for Rick's sperm. A third couple in the mix is Chuck and Evan. Chuck is an old HIV+ queen in a wheelchair, whose partner of four years is Evan, a 19-year-old club kid.

Noah's Arc Second Season: DVD Review

by dykehalo

Noah's Arc in a nutshell is an African-American, male version of The L-Word with less drama. Having only watched a couple episodes of the first season and not really knowing what had previously happened I found it very easy to jump right into the second season. There were a few things here and there that I didn't understand right away but understood.

Noah is a screenwriter who is finally becoming successful. Many bumps and turns make an already hard process of turning a screenplay into a movie becomes even harder when Noah's lead for the movie wants Noah to change the movie from gay to straight. Things only get worse when Noah's ex, Wade, shows up with a new boyfriend. Wade and Noah have never gotten over each other but is there too much between them to get back together?

Suffering Man's Charity: Movie Review

By Jeff Walsh

In "Suffering Man's Charity," Alan Cumming delivers a tour-de-force as both actor and director in this dark comic romp.

Cumming plays John Vandermark, a music teacher who dreams of writing an opera, although his greatest talent seems to be in supporting artistic younger men. His latest conquest/charity case is Sebastian St. Germain (played by David Boreanaz), whose novel seems as non-existent as his celibacy, although the latter is only reserved for his host.

When Vandermark discovers that Germain is sleeping around with women around town, they have a very spirited knock-down-drag-out bitchfest about it, to put it lightly.

Orphan's Quest: Book Review

by underdarkness

When I first picked up Orphan's Quest, it was out of sheer interest to find out whether a novel deemed a "gay fantasy" could possibly be a good read. Most novels I've come by that specify the main characters as gay often times end up being preachy and tedious to get through without snoring or yelling at the pages, though I figured I'd give Orphan's Quest a chance.

The story starts off with a young man, Rokey, going through his studies at a sort of boarding school called the Noble Contemplative. The hierarchy of faculty at the school is vaguely reminiscent of a Catholic institution, minus the religious rule. From the start, we see that Rokey is attracted to other young men.

We also come to find that the world in which Rokey lives is incredibly tolerant of gays (or Samers, as they're called in the story). Through an accident that Rokey is ultimately blamed for, he is sent away from the confines of the school and is told never to return. The night following, Rokey is attacked and is saved by a young elf named Flaskamper (or Flash). From there, Rokey is introduced to Flash's fellow misfits who make their way from town to town to get by.

Conversations and Cosmopolitans: Book Review

by ForeverEndedToday

In Conversations and Cosmopolitans: How to Give your Mother a Hangover, a book by mother and son Robert and Jane Rave, a smart and witty perspective of life as a young gay male trying to find his place in the gay community, and a mother trying to knock some sense into her child is given. Whether it's about online dating or "manscaping," mama always has something to say.

Robert, who at the beginning of the book comes out to his parents through a letter, is a 21-year-old mid-western man who has recently moved to New York City to get a fresh start, and according to him, share sushi with Renee Zellweger.

Robert offers a comical account of his desire to fit in with the gay community and overcome his lack of self-confidence. His portion of the book is well written, and manages to grab the attention of the reader by focusing on major events that will have the reader laughing at his failed attempts to be smooth.

Freak Show: Book Review

by underdarkness

Freak Show, by James St. James, is the story of a young drag queen, Billy, who is trying to get the people at his school to like and accept him … by dressing up as a swamp monster in green makeup. The narrator of this story automatically struck me as being the most flamboyant human being on earth.

The story opens with talk of makeup and sewing scraps of fabric together to make FABULOUS new fashion statements. Billy is, in essence, the gayest human being that ever walked the fictional earth. Billy's attempts to fit in at his high school are, quite frankly, freaking hilarious. This book doesn’t miss a beat with the humor of being an outcast or the insanity that come from homophobic students.

On this first day of school at his new high school, Billy walks into his biology class and greets each and every student with an "air peck" on the cheek and scans the room for his first friend. He sits down next to a beefy, flat-faced guy named Bernie and quickly begins commenting on how amazing his fashion sense is, all the while biting his tongue at how incredibly horrible it actually is. Then, out of nowhere, as Billy puts his hand on him, Beefy Bernie shouts, "Touch me again faggot, and I'll kick the crap out of you!" Whoa… WHOA. Where did that come from?

Show Me: DVD Review

by dykehalo

While watching Show Me, my first instinct was to love it because it is Canadian and lesbian and I'm a Canadian lesbian.

It's hard for me to say whether it's a good movie or a bad movie. I was biased going into it because of the Canadian aspect. If I was forced to make some kind of decision, I'd have to say it's pretty good for a Canadian movie but as a movie in general it was only okay. I enjoyed it and would watch it again but it won't be one of those movies that never come out of the DVD player.

After shooing away two squeegee kids, Sarah calls her girlfriend Sam to ensure she is going to meet her at the cabin for their tenth anniversary. Sam is busy trying to resolve a hostile takeover and cannot make it up to the cabin. The whole time Sarah is making the phone call the two kids, Jen and Jackson, are staring her down, so she rolls down her window and offers them money. They immediately jump into the car, insist they only want to go to the next intersection, but end up hijacking her.

Vintage: Book Review

by underdarkness

When I first picked up this book, I honestly thought I wouldn't like it because of its tagline, "A Ghost Story." I have rarely been able to get into books that are so blatantly described as such, but I figured I'd give it a chance.

I'm certainly glad I did. It is a sweet, if enticingly eerie, coming of age story that delicately fits in all we have come to expect in a gay teen's coming out years. Alongside this there is room for first love, gothic interest, a stalking ghost and the best girl friend that every young gay man has. The characters are shockingly believable and give a level of depth within the book's pages.

The unnamed narrator describes his experience with a ghost, Josh, which he came by on a midnight walk on an abandoned stretch of highway. What the narrator first believes to be a dream come true turns into something quite different as the ghost of a handsome jock run down by a drunk driver in the 50's refuses to let him be. As for the rest of the story, you will just have to read it now, won't you?

29th & Gay: DVD Review

by lost_in_wonderland

Please God, when will it end?

That was the only thing I could think of when watching the utter monstrosity known as 29th and Gay.

I wanted to like this movie. I really wanted to like this movie. There's such a lack of authentic gay comedies, I wanted this one to be an indie gem to be treasured.

Needless to say, that was not the case.

James Sanchez is a gay man who has just had his 29th birthday and is feeling the pressure of settling down. He's a wannabe actor who works at an amusement park/movie studio. He has an enormous crush on the coffee boy at the local coffee shop, and engages in several hijinks while spying on him. His best friend and former roommate Roxy, a woman looking for a cause after turning into an activist for no apparent reason, tries to give him sound advice about dating. His other friend Brandon, a flaming queen, drags him out to clubs and hooks up with various boys, leaving James to his own devices. His parents are extremely supportive and try to acclimate to the gay lifestyle that they think their son is living.

Sounds hilarious right?

Clouds and Eclipses: Book Review

by lost_in_wonderland

Initially, I was hesitant about reviewing this book. A collection of short stories is no easy feat to repass. However, I chose to continue and I'm glad that I did.

Consistent, entertaining, and thought-provoking by turn, the stories within are all wonderful and poignant; Gore Vidal is known more for his novels and essays, but these stories, originally published as Thirsty Evil, minus a new story, are to be treasured. Most stories are from Vidal's early career, with one inclusion, from Tennessee Williams' youth, removed due to the prolific playwright's request. Gore Vidal is truly a great storyteller.

Loving Annabelle: DVD Review

by StateOfTheOnion

I'll admit it; the only real reason I wanted to see Loving Annabelle, a film focusing on the taboo relationship between a teacher and a student, was for the high hotness factor. Well, the film did deliver in the hotness capacity, but it delivered in so many other ways as well. I was pleasantly surprised to find this film well constructed and, for the most part, very believable.

Annabelle, played by the talented Erin Kelly, is the daughter of an absentee-mother-type who is also a Senator. When she begins attending a Catholic boarding school she quickly makes a lasting impression among the students and the staff.

Annabelle is rebellious, tempestuous, and unapologetic (hot). Ms. Simone Bradley, played by Diane Gaidry, is quite the opposite. She is closeted and very tempered. Despite their differences, the two fall in love with one another. The film explores their relationship but manages to do so without being too preachy in favor of either side of the teacher/student relationship debate.

The IHOP Papers: Book Review

by dykehalo

The IHOP Papers by Ali Liebegott was an unexpected surprise. I zipped through this book and loved every minute I spent reading it. She is an amazing author with a unique writing style that I think people will fall in love with.

As a former cutter, I totally related to Francesca, the main character and narrator of the book. She doesn't cut to kill herself, but to feel and as a way to pass time and many other reasons. I believe many other people on Oasis will definitely relate to Francesca as well.

At the beginning of the novel, Francesca moves from South Carolina to San Francisco to follow her teacher, Irene. They both live in "Simplicity House," with Irene's lover Gustavo and Irene's *other* lover, Jenny. All four of them sleep in the same bed, believe in the Goddess, and try to live simply by doing things like conserving water whenever possible

Baby Remember My Name: Book Review

by -Ruby-

I know they say “don’t judge a book by its cover”… but when you pick up this book, dark and glossy, with a front cover of two chicks making out and back cover of anthology editor Michelle Tea in a tank top revealing her sexy tattoos… you just sense that you’re in for something good. Oh baby, you’re SO right. Baby Remember My Name is a collection of 22 short stories by young women from across America. They’re provocative, poetic, cute, funny, bittersweet, heartbreaking, raw, and real.

“Juan the Brave” is about a young girl named Erica, who wants to be a boy and struggles to fit into her tight Latino family and community. “T-Ten” is narrated by ten-year-old Chelsea, who’s trying to stay out of trouble with her mom and teacher, while attempting to scrape up enough cash to buy birthday presents for herself and her twin sister. “Snow Fight” takes you through the wild day-to-day adventures in a tough “ghetto” inner-city high school. “Sunshine in the Fat End” is told by Jessie, an adolescent girl living in a trailer park with an autistic brother, crackhead mom and her abusive boyfriend. In “Part 1: Tumbleweed” Scarlet shares her journey from New York to California with her best friend and sometimes lover, working as a stripper and sometimes prostitute.

Keeping You A Secret: Book Review

By Jeff Walsh

In Keeping You A Secret, Julie Anne Peters doesn't waste much time in setting up the two main characters. On the very first page, Holland sees the T-Shirt of a new girl, Cece, across the hall from her high school locker. Holland's stomach "flutter"s when she first sees the new girl and ponders the meaning of the letters on her shirt, IMRU? Am I what? Holland wonders to herself. The rest of the book explores that question.

Holland is a driven student, taking extra courses, staying up at all hours to do homework, serving as student body president, waking up early to swim laps, and working in a day care after school for extra money. But none of it seems to be her choice, let alone her desire. She just slogs through every day on autopilot doing everything that is expected of her. Her mother even turns a blind eye to Holland having sex with her boyfriend, as long as they're being careful. In just a few short months, high school will be over and the rest of her life can begin, although she doesn't seem to have much interest in finishing applications for college either.

Between Mom and Jo: Book Review

By Jeff Walsh

Once again, Julie Anne Peters has written an engaging book with a young narrator. But in "Between Mom and Jo," Nick isn't struggling with his sexuality, but with the eventual breakup of his lesbian parents. He calls his biological mother "Mom," and her partner "Jo," but they both raised him.

The book starts before the breakup, but we see it coming. Mom is the provider in the house, who keeps everything going, whereas Jo can't hold down a job and sometimes drinks. There are issues between Jo and her in-laws, who haven't interacted much since the commitment ceremony. The whole situation is a powder keg, but when it comes to Nick, everyone is united in their love for him, and wanting to do what's best.

He gets teased at school about being a freak raised by freaks. At 14, he is also at the age where he's difficult to handle because of his own sexuality and emotions. When Mom and Jo finally break up, the situation meant to be better for everyone doesn't really work out that way.

Luna: Book Review

By Jeff Walsh

Every night, Regan wakes up to find her sibling Luna in her bedroom, standing in front of her mirror. Every night, Luna wears a different dress and talks about her future as she applies different makeup and wigs.

Every morning, Regan has breakfast with the family, and her brother Liam sits there quiet and withdrawn. Only Regan knows that Liam is transgender, that her brother is really her sister.

Luna's name, Spanish for moon, is appropriate given it is the only time of day that she feels whole, not having to pretend to be a boy, which is getting more difficult. She has to use her sister's bedroom at night, because she longer has mirrors in her room, or else she will constantly keep catching glances of the boy she has to pretend to be.

Wild Tigers I Have Known: Movie Review

By Jeff Walsh

"Wild Tigers I Have Known" is a visual collage of pubescent sexuality at its most yearning. I've heard it described in several places as a gay youth film, but it could just as easily be about a biological boy questioning whether he is a trans girl. And if you want answers to such basic questions, you aren't going to find them in this movie.

Right up front, I will declare that I like linear narratives. I like stories that begin, something happens, and then they end. Doesn't have to be a happy Hollywood ending, but I like to think I was on a journey of some sort. So, a movie where not much of anything occurs, with lots of jump cuts to nature shots and strange video, is not really my idea of a good time.

The main character, Logan, is 13 and develops an unlikely friendship with an older boy named Rodeo. There's a running story about mountain lions being seen in the area, and Rodeo says he knows where they live in the woods, so he offers to show Logan. Their friendship continues, and eventually Logan's crush on Rodeo manifests itself in a persona he creates names Leah. Logan (as Leah) starts having a sexual phone dialogue with Rodeo, which eventually leads to Rodeo going to meet Leah in person for sex, expecting it to be someone female.

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