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The Boy with the Painful Tattoo: Holmes & Moriarity 3 (Volume 3) Paperback – October 3, 2014
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About the Author
A distinct voice in gay fiction, multi-award-winning author JOSH LANYON has been writing gay mystery, adventure and romance for over a decade. In addition to numerous short stories, novellas, and novels, Josh is the author of the critically acclaimed Adrien English series, including The Hell You Say, winner of the 2006 USABookNews awards for GLBT Fiction. Josh is an Eppie Award winner and a three-time Lambda Literary Award finalist.
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Top customer reviews
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So why five stars? Because it's just so wonderful to lose yourself in Josh Lanyon's brilliant writing, his engaging characters, their honest and authentic emotions and the vivid place-pictures he paints like an Old Master. What The Boy With The Painful Tattoo felt like to me was coming home - to a familiar, cherished family who, despite some of its eccentrics and arguments is, in some way, something essential to being alive and complete.
If you haven't read Lanyon before, there's a huge gap in your literary experience and you need to fill it. If you choose to use Holmes & Moriarity to begin filling that gaping hole, start with the first one and work your way up to this one. Not that you need to, in order to appreciate this book as a wonderful gay-related novel, but because Lanyon writes on a big scale, as though every book in a series is just a chapter in the arc of the whole thing. Part of the pleasure of reading the Adrien English or Homes & Moriarity tales is experiencing the growth and refining of the characters as Mr. Lanyon moves them along.
It's pretty hopeless to try to give any kind of real synopsis of a Lanyon novel - and much of the pleasure of his writing is discovering the twists and turns as you read - but in this book, Holmes and Moriarity have moved to San Francisco, bought a house together, and are a bit edgy trying to get their new life off the ground. It doesn't help matters when Holmes discovers a dead body in one of his moving crates. What follows involves robbery, murder, a ten-million-dollar coin collection and a literary stalker who's just one of several imminent threats on Holmes' life and well-being.
You have to read the book to understand the sheer joy of dipping into the totally believable worlds created by the fertile imagination of this first-rate author - and the confidence and comfort of returning to such well-written and long-established characters as Holmes and Moriarity.
Even the title of the book is a part of the story. There is no boy with painful tattoos in this book, just an author whose agent has decided to rebrand him as a female Scandinavian Noir author. The title of the book is derived from a number of recently popular and trendy Scandinavian novels, such as The Boy In The Suitcase and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. The authors of both books were suggested by Holmes' agent as people on whom to model his new literary personna. Clever, our Mr. Lanyon!
If you love a good read about sympathetic characters, a mature love story, and a passable mystery, you'll love The Boy With The Painful Tattoo. It's an extremely well-written, comfortable, layered book that I recommend with both a clear conscience and all my heart. Read it!
My only regret is that I can knock out a novel a day and I will have to wait until Mr. Lanyon is ready to give me another "fix".
The characters here have grown into each other. We get to watch something in process that might be growing rare in real life and in the stories that are about real life. I think it is important for people to clearly sees the tiny struggles of life and how they can rebound, compound, grow, fester and overwhelm even a great relationship. Its not an easy book in some places but it all fits "real life" in the living through a long term relationship. I so hope that will never become a rarity. Here, we get to see the work a relationship requires no matter the depths of love between two committed people. How the smallest things can cause conflict in a casual moment.
Then, there is the really fine mystery component. I won't spoil the suspense with hints. I did not think he could best the Adrien English Series, but he may have done it here. I hope for more Holmes & Moriarity, more Adrien and Jake - more Ty & Will. Really, more of anything Lanyon.
It has been a while since I've read such a brilliantly written piece of literature. This is not the usual fare of M/M Romance and transcends even his earlier works. The use of the English language in this work took me back to reading for college the kind of books that stay with you a long time. I hope to see more of this with old characters or new, any way we can have it.
Thank you for the experience of reading a novel worth the time. I'll re-read this one again.
Most recent customer reviews
I liked this, but I didn't love it. The mystery was okay.Read more