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Federal Fag: An Alex Reynolds Mystery (Alex Reynolds Mysteries) Paperback – March 15, 1999
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From Library Journal
While his lover Peter attends a class reunion, narrator Alex, watches a porn flick. When he recognizes his former college lover, he decides the guy must need help, arranges a meeting, then finds the man murdered. Alex's British mother appears out of nowhere to help him fend off the police, but a subsequent murder forces them to reveal their sometime CIA status (see Government Gay, St. Martin's, 1997). So Alex, Peter, and mom investigate, learning more than they needed to know about the porn industry. Despite the rather feeble plot, the salacious subject matter and mom provide comic relief, albeit without much finesse. A marginal purchase.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Murder and mayhem full of delicious wit and dialogue. In addition to the CIA, the fast-paced action involves the FBI, the Mob, and the druggy world of the exploitative gay porn industry. Rounded out with movie references aplenty and the presence of the delightfully fey Jean, this should please lots of readers." --Booklist
"Quick paced...filled with action...a very enjoyable and worthwhile read." --Our Own
Top customer reviews
However ... two off-putting aspects of Hunter's protagonists that appeared below the surface in the first book become more pronounced - and grating - in this second novel. One is the cutesy relationship between Reynolds and his squeaky clean husband Peter. Alex and Peter come off as just a bit too superior and a bit too perfect, both as gay men and especially as a gay couple. To be specific, they're uncomfortably snobby and condescending toward the world in general and gay society in particular, and it's not an attractive trait. The other turn-off is the couple's unnaturally close relationship with Alex's eccentric British mother, with whom they live and work. A supportive, accepting parent is one thing, but Jean is intrusively involved in Alex and Peter's lives, so much so that the three appear to be codependent to an unhealthy degree. It's not good when the protagonists' quirks begin to overshadow other considerations ... like plot ... and this increasingly threatens to become a problem in the otherwise likeable "Federal Fag".
Alex decides to find his old mate and eventually obtains his number from a mutal friend. He calls and arranges to see Patrick in LA apartnment. However, when Alex arrives at the place, he finds Patrick lying dead on the floor and the CIA looking over his shoulder. Alex with the help of his lover begin to investigate the pornography world in an attempt to learn who killed Patrick because the culprit wants Alex to be his next vicitm.
Like its predessecor, GOVERNMENT GAY, FEDERAL FAG is obviosuly not for everyone. However, anyone who gives the who-done-it a chance will enjoy the novel. Alex and Patrick are a unique and interesting couple, with a fun to read storyline. Regardless of the reader's sexual choice, this is a well-written series that provides an interesting ambience as well as a first rate mystery.
This reviewer thought it was really special for many reasons.
Federal Fag is a welcome addition to the series, as Alex and his family try to discover who killed a porn star-former friend of Alex's. I found myself laughing out loud over and over again (especially when Alex's mother shows up for the first time). Hunter hits just the right balance between the humor, which is first rate, and the mystery, which is a well-thought-out, constant source of surprise.
If you like more than a little humor with your mystery, you'll love it. This is a wonderful book!