Ellora’s Cave, $6.49, ISBN 978-1419916328
Contemporary Erotica, 2008
Mike Williams meets Lee DeAngelis—no, he’s not a porn actor—in Cash Cole’s Knights & White Satin, and it’s like a jolt of electricity shooting up his pee-pee to let him know that he’s in love. No, I’m not joking.
He took hope when Kelly, a former Miss Gay America he knew, placed her hand on the gorgeous man’s shoulder and whispered something into his ear, eliciting from him a delightful baritone laugh that sent shivers down Mike’s spine and straight to his cock.
The problem is, Lee has a wife, Cate, whom he married to keep the parents happy, and they have a kid, Sam. Oh don’t worry, she knows all about his sexual preference, and in fact, she urges him all the time to rejoice with the boys. Even better, she has the courtesy to have a terminal disease, so that Lee can posture and act like the most conflicted bloke ever in order to come off even better in the reader’s eyes, before she exits the stage and let there be nothing left standing between Mike and Lee.
Sigh. The conflict here is really self-inflicted. Cate will be all, hey, go get laid, baby, it’s what the readers what to read about, and he’s like, no, he would feel like he’s cheating on her and oh, people, look at him—isn’t he the most noble gentle-gay ever?
Worst of all, these two men already moved to third base faster than I can blink, so it’s not like there is much to put on the angst show for. So what are the men whining for? They’ve already banged, so it’s not like there’s much else to get hung up over. Penis in poopy-hole—once that is done, is there anything more dramatic to whine over when it comes to a relationship? When these two men are not wringing their hands like wet rags flopping from a line over trivial self-inflicted nonsense, they are sulking and generally acting like little boys in need of a time out. The author also tries to spice things up with the usual, predictable rants about evil Republicans oppressing women and LGBT+ folks everywhere—an incongruity indeed, as the author is using a female character’s terminal disease and eventual death as both a crutch and convenient contrivance to allow two men to finally join crotch to rear without being bothered by icky heterosexual women ever again. The more Cate is supportive over Lee and Mike, the more the story makes it apparent that her death will be the best thing to ever happen to these men. Play me again that song about respecting women?
At the last page, Sam wants the stuffed toy meant for Mike, and Lee doesn’t even have the grace to give that to the kid and let the adult, supposedly mature new bloke of his to have one of the many other stuffed toy presents instead. What is the author doing—telling me that the whiny Lee is putting his new bloke over his kid that is still too young to understand that Mommy has died so that Daddy can finally screw another man without having to spend the next ten pages acting like a broken washing machine?
I don’t know if it were due to inexperience or just a perverse desire to make me dislike the main characters, but the author ends up saddling this story with no compelling or believable internal romantic conflict; just two guys whining about how hard it is to have the best sex ever, because one of them is inconveniently saddled with a dying wife. Even the last page seems designed to make me give these two men the side-est side eye ever. I don’t know what the author wants to achieve here, but Knights & White Satin is more like whiners and soiled satin.