Monday, January 14, 2008

Christmas for Gary by Vic Winter

TITLE: Christmas for Gary
AUTHOR: Vic Winter
PUBLISHER: Torquere Press
LENGTH: Short story (roughly 10k)
GENRE: Contemporary gay erotic romance
COST: $2.49

Gary is stuck staying with his grandmother over Christmas, but she and her friends are far more outspoken than he ever expected. When they capture the attention of a hot guy he spies on one of their coffee breaks, he is mortified when they announce Gary thinks he’s attractive. He’s even more shocked when this gorgeous specimen actually returns the compliment. An invitation for a free training session turns into lunch, then turns into something more. Did Gary just get the Christmas gift of a lifetime?

Another of the more palatable Christmas stories I bought this year. Another short story. I wonder if authors think that the Christmas season can’t really handle a long story.

Either way around it, this was a very simple story. Geeky Boy gets stuck with Outrageous Grandma. Outrageous Grandma hooks up with Geeky Boy with Hot Boy. Two Boys go out, have sex, fall in love. End of story. Any conflict there is in the story is swept under the feelgood rug early on, so all the reader has to do is sit back and enjoy the gentle ride of these two hooking up. It’s like comfort food when you’re sick. There’s nothing challenging or different about it, but it feels good for those weak moments.

I did get a kick out of Gary’s grandmother and all her friends. They were far more memorable than either of the two men. Troy, the perfect boyfriend – and the fact that I can never keep his name straight should be telling; I keep wanting to call him Todd and then have to go back and check the story to find out I’m wrong – is just a little too good to be true, and Gary’s only interesting when he’s with the old ladies.

Still, it was sweet for what it was. And now my Christmas story reviews for this year are over.

Readability

8/10 – Simple and unassuming.

Hero #1

6/10 – Likable and unassuming, kind of like the rest of the story.

Hero #2

5/10 – Likable, but borders on too good to be true.

Entertainment value

6/10 – A sweet nibble, but not something I’m going to remember for long.

World building

7/10 – Not bad for a short story, though I got more of a feel for the older women’s world than the two heroes

TOTAL:

32/50

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

I don't think it's so much that authors think that the holidays can't handle a longer story, it's that most folks have a hard time reading a story that's tied closely to a particular holiday out of season. So if you're a slow writer like me, it's tough to tie up six months' of writing time on a story that's not going to have the shelf life of something that's not identified with any particular time of year.

At least, that's my take on the notion.