Blue Jay (London Stories #3) by A. Zukowski
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#LGBTQ+, #genderqueer, #genderfluid, #sports, #depression, #prostitution, #sextrade, #contemporary #romance
Boxing was all Alex had ever known, his entire being now shattered beyond repair. One night and four years in jail changed everything. These days, Alex prefers the shadows and dreams of nightmares. Will he find rainbows and glitters in the run-down flat he’s moving into? Chris has been selling their looks and body for too long. It may be time for a life change, but one thing is clear. The fairest of them all will make a lousy lover until they stop acting the smart-mouthed and blasé cynic. Their story begins with an elegant tango up the narrow stairwell… A match made in London. Featuring Chris from Liam for Hire, Blue Jay is a hopeful and romantic story with genderqueer and bisexual characters.
4 out of 5 (very good)
Blue Jay is the third book in the London Stories series. Chris featured in Liam and Ali's story, but now he has his own. Alex has just come out of the prison, with secrets he doesn't want to share.
Oh my. Seriously!!! This is an amazing book and a brilliant addition to the series. Alex is most definitely a gentle giant who has made mistakes and has no intention of repeating them. Once you have a place in his heart, that's it. You're there for life. And Chris finds himself there, he just doesn't understand how. Their relationship is smooth and gentle, which considering their pasts is absolutely the way to go. The most obvious thing is it shows just how much Chris thinks of Alex, even if he won't admit it. Alex is a rock though, and isn't willing to let Chris push him away.
There are a whole host of characters in this book that you will either love or loathe. I loved Dex, but Alex's family grated on me until towards the end. The same with Chris' mum, Annette. I won't tell you how big the smile was on my face with one of the last scenes between her and Chris. You'll just have to read it for yourself, and figure out why I was smiling!
I loved how Chris' pronouns changed dependent upon their mood, and I ADORED that Alex accepted it all - no judgements, only questions to try and help him understand. This was written as first person, present tense, which isn't my favourite way of reading. It does help with getting into the mind of the character, but sometimes I wasn't ready for it to change. Even so, it was a fantastic book that I thoroughly enjoyed, and I have no hesitation in recommending it or the series as a whole. Perfect for those who like their romance a little darker.
* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and the comments here are my honest opinion. *
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I am a London-based British writer who grew up in the gay village and red light district of Manchester. I was trained in screenwriting at the University of the Arts London; National Film & Television School and Script Factory, UK. I worked as a film journalist, wrote and produced short films. I create strong characters and make them heroes in authentic settings and unexpected scenarios.
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