Tag Archives: William Holden

Anatomy of a Wish – Hayden Chance (Dorje Publishing)


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We’re all guilty. Yes, every one of us. And I’d wager that we’re guilty of it every day in our lives. The inevitable, “I wish.” You know you’ve done it. Perhaps you stopped at a red light and wished that you had gone a bit faster to make the light? Have you ever wished to win the lottery? Have you wished that you had taken a left instead of a right? Perhaps you’ve wished for a better job, a new car, a trip around the world. Come on, admit it. What have you wished for lately?

Meet Griffin Gallagher, a troubled young man without hope, without a job, without money. That is until he finds a coupon for a free bowl of soup. With that little slip of paper and the Catalpa Café,  Griffin’s life is about to change. He’s going to realize just what goes into a wish, how they are determined, and the consequences of those two little words, “I wish.” Griffin will take you with him on an amazing journey through a magical, strange world set within the gritty landscape of Chicago.

Hayden Chance has created a remarkable thing in his novel, The Anatomy of a Wish. His words are simple, his writing style easy, and together they make for one of the most wonderful books to come along in a very long time. You are immediately at ease with his prose. His characters are vibrant, real people you want to know, want to care for – and you do with minimal effort. They become your friends and your family without even thinking about it.

Get Anatomy of a Wish and let Hayden’s words transport you. It’s a story of love, hatred, hope, and redemption. The novel will grip you within the first page and won’t let go of you even as you turn the last page.

You’ve been looking for a book like this, perhaps you’ve even wished for it – Hayden Chance has just granted you your wish. Get this book. You won’t regret it.

Reviewed by William Holden

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Anything for a Dollar – Todd Gregory, ed. (Bold Strokes Books)

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As Todd Gregory also admits in his introduction to this volume of erotica about men paid for sex, I have been paid for my body as well. These days, however, the only way I could make any substantial money is if I charged by the pound. Still, there was a time when I was younger, cuter, and braver and my rent needed to be paid. I’m not ashamed of it. As I first heard from Modern English, it’s all part of “life’s rich tapestry.” And that tapestry has many threads, as evidenced by the variety of stories in  Anything for a Dollar.

The collection starts off strong with Max Thomas’s atmospheric, “In the Studio,” about a college student who starts off modeling to make a bit of cash (sounds familiar to me) but soon becomes engaged in both the situation and the sex. A longish story, it’s the perfect introduction as it really encapsulates what the book is about. But then we veer off into some rather unexpected territory.

Aaron Travis’s “The Adventure of the Rugged Youth” is a neat piece of Sherlock Holmes fanfic that wouldn’t have been out of place in Lethe Press’s recent A Study in Lavender as Holmes encounters a boy paid to seduce and kill Holmes in his sleep. Yet another reason not to let tricks stay over. Jay Starre takes to South America with his stripper story, “Private Dance in Rio,” one of two Starre entries here. More domestic but far stranger is Jeffrey Ricker’s “The Last Good-Bye,” which features a psychic sexual surrogate helping a man work through his grief for his late partner in a rather startling way.

Jeff Mann enters the fray with his hot tale of  a country boy’s paid lust for a blond businessman named Bjorn in “Penthouse,” which also (true to Mann’s form) contains some irresistable descriptions of several New Orelans feasts. Oh, and people get tied up as well. Davem Verne takes back to the subject of modeling with his story of Eurotrash posers, “Paris Euros Giles,”  but Rob Rosen prevents things from becoming too Eurocentric with “Revenge of the 97-Pound Weakling,” his delightful tale of a gymrat contest judge. Nathan Sims has a more supernatural take on the subject in “Haven’s Rest,” which sees a boy helping rid a backwoods ex-gay ministry of a particularly evil spirit.

Haley Walsh’s “Marked” takes me closer to familiar territory as he focuses in on the carnival life with a story of a tattooed man and an itinerant stud he calls Pink Boy, but as visitors to New York City know, the urban environment has its own charms. One of those is the subway, but Luke Oliver takes that rather prosaic setting and turns it into something…well, super with a capital “S” on its chest in “The Conductor.” William Holden gives us a historical perspective in “Debtors’ Prison,” and the inimitable Dale Chase rouses us once more with a tale of a Western rent boy with “A Few Dollars More.” We’ve all seen ugly hustlers and wondered how they were able to make a buck, and Lawrence Schimel enlightens us with his “Pity Fuck.” And then there’s Todd Gregory’s title story to wrap things up.

A word about availability. This title isn’t out until October 1st. Being a reviewer, I often receive advance copies of books. I try as much as possible to review them close to their release dates, but I was so anxious to dive into this collection that I paid no attention to the date and, thus, am reviewing it a bit early. But either of the above links will allow you to pre-order this terrific compendium of erotica, so feel free to do so.

It’s delayed gratification of the best kind.

©  2013  Jerry L. Wheeler

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