At sixteen, Sam has rarely been off the Thomas property. He's dying to meet lads himself -- gay, young, hungry. He grew up on the whispered tales of Will Fairchild, who followed gorgeous Ben Garvey east out of Coopers Crossing into bushranger country, a century before. Now, he watches for a truck called 'Stand and Deliver' ... but nothing could prepare him for the reality of Steve Ryan. And nothing short of a cross between Crocodile Dundee and Brokeback Mountain will prepare you for Coming Out in Cooper's Crossing.
Sweet, short, humorous, a little angsty and teenaged, this was a real treat to find. The first file I opened from the package at the GLBT Rummage Sale, this has me feeling good and ready to dive into the others.
Sam, gay, level-headed, and not inclined to turn things dramatic when they don't need to be, is our narrator. Growing up in micro-town anywhere has its challenges, but Sam meets his with eyes open, and if the only role model he has has been dead a century, he doesn't do too badly on his own. The Australian slang is thick here, the author kindly provides a glossary for those of us who speak a duller language, and it's all great characterization.
The ending is a little confused -- things happen to Sam rather than him causing things to happen, or he's thinking it out still, but as the title tells us, the secrets are over, and Steve turns out to be a gem. Four marbles
Buy it here, exclusively at the GLBT Bookshelf, and for a limited time: the Rummage Sale won't last forever, and all proceeds go to maintain the Bookshelf. Buy one story, half a dozen, or the whole collection -- there's some goodies in there.
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