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First in the four-edition The Hacker Series: Successful high-tech entrepreneur Erica Hathaway's life becomes entangled with that of billionaire Blake Landon's. Learn more about author, Meredith Wild
Alan Chin's novels explore spiritual growth through finding the right relationships. While his stories often contain elements of suspense, romance, Eastern religion, and the paranormal, his underlying focus is the power of love.
Alan is the author of eight novels, an anthology of short stories, and three screenplays.
Alan's first novel, Island Song, won the 2008 QBliss Excellence in Literature award. His novels, The Lonely War and Match Maker won a total of five Rainbow Literature Awards. His book, The Plain of Bitter Honey is a 2014 ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year finalist in the Science Fiction category.
Alan lives and writes half of each year at his home in Southern California, and spend the other half of each year traveling the globe with my husband, Herman Chin.
A second chance may end up being life changing. Daniel and Jared were run out of professional tennis when their romantic relationship was exposed in a very public way. Now Daniel has a second chance at coaching when a young prodigy asks for his help. Connor's career isn't the only one on the line as Jared returns from retirement to the sport he craves. Time has passed but not enough as the same prejudice rears its head and threatens not just their careers but their lives.
Although Match Maker has moments of drama and intensity, at the heart this is a tennis driven story. The sport is the main focus of the story as the characters are all devoted to their passion. While it's not necessary to appreciate tennis to enjoy the story, it helps a great deal since there is quite a bit of information offered. The plot revolves around Jared and Connor as they prepare for and play on the pro tennis circuit with Daniel as their coach. The story is told through Daniel's perspective and often ignores weighty issues such as relationship problems between Jared and Daniel, instead focusing on the sport itself.
There is a romantic element towards the end of the story after a hate crime has been committed that forces Jared and Daniel to reevaluate their lives. This brings the most romance and emotional intensity the book sees, because otherwise this reads like an interesting look at fictional professional tennis players and the various people/issues surrounding them. That's not bad and indeed the author has written an interesting sports themed story that highlights the discrimination in sports. The level of detail and information offered is impressive but never overwhelming and carefully crafted to keep the reader interested without being bored.Read more ›
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Without loosing his penchant for eastern philosophy and lifestyle, with Match Maker Alan Chin tests his hand with a sport themed novel, something that apparently is completely at the opposite. Apparently since the chosen sport is yes something that is based on a good physical strength, but it has also deep root in balance and inner calm, Tennis.
Strange is that, the main argument of the novel is that Tennis is a macho sport... well, truth be told in Europe Tennis is probably the most likely candidate to have gay professional players. And no, this is not due to the actual presence of out players, but simply since Tennis is seen like a sophisticated sport, something the common man hardly will play.
But in any case, European misconceptions or not, being gay and a professional player is something that doesn't match well in any sport, at least to the public opinion, and so Jared and Daniel, teenager lovers who became player and trainer, had seen their dreams smashed; the downfall was not so hard, Jared survives giving few 1 hour lessons each week to people willing to pay more than the average to boast they have a former champion as instructor, and Daniel has a more common job as tennis teacher in a poshy club. They could be happy, but regrets make their life a nightmare, and also their relationship is under duress.
When Connor enters their life, I feared the worst; 18 years old and pretty, and willing to do everything necessary to reach his goal, I was scared he would have been the final blow to Daniel and Jared's relationship and instead he was their only chance to survive. Connor is not gay, and even if he has a special relationship with Spencer, a same age kid, his is more the jealousy of best friends who don't like to share a special bond.Read more ›
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The revelation that they were a gay couple forced Daniel Bottega and Jared Stoderling off the professional tennis circuit four years earlier. In the interim, Daniel was marking time as the tennis pro at a quiet country club in San Francisco, while Jared pretty much crawled into a liquor bottle to drown his crushed dreams. When Daniel is approached to train Connor Lin, a promising young prodigy whose tennis game needs focus, he decides to gets Jared involved as well. Besides getting Jared off drinking, it reawakens both of their spirits of competition. Jared goes from just helping Connor workout to being his doubles partner, and both begin to move up the ranks on their singles tournaments.
When the press covering one of the midlevel tournaments gets tipped off about Daniel and Jared's relationship, it results in rumors that Connor is gay as well (He isn't), and the trio experience bias from homophobic judges as well as receiving threats of violence. Determined not to quit again, they continue to compete, supported by good friends and Connor's second generation Chinese-American family. As if the pressure of competition and the homophobia wasn't enough to deal with, all three suffer physical and emotional obstacles that threaten to shatter their dreams.
In a word ... Wow! After reading his previous two novels, I expect outstanding writing from Mr. Chin, but this raises the bar far above any expectations I had. The story will remind you a bit of the gay classic "The Front Runner" in its intensity and "we VS them" conflicts, but I believe the story and characters are even more realistic and relatable here. It's the rare novel you may want to read numerous times, and is a great gift for anyone facing adversity. Beautifully and skillfully done, I give it five match point stars out of five. Bravo!
- Bob Lind, Echo Magazine
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