Like Rare Wine – 1st read on velvet-mag. co.uk – by Josie Henley-Einion issue 5, Aug 21, 2005
Reviewer: Chri-c from Boston

 

C.C. Saint-Clair is known as The Thinking Woman’s Lesbian Romance Writer. However, it would be untruthful to describe this book as a ‘lesbian romance’, not just because the main romance is not lesbian (although there are lesbian characters), but because the style and content of the book does not adhere to the low expectations of the genre.

It could best be described as a transman’s coming of age. I’m happy to say that I fail to spot the soft-focus, unrealistic plotlines and lengthy melodramatic speeches so common in trashy romances.

The opening scenes are somewhat off-putting, and had I read the first pages in a bookshop I may have decided not to buy, but this is an online only purchase for which a reader takes a risk.

I also initially found the style and language difficult but soon acclimatised to Aussie-speak.

I’m glad I continued to read as it very quickly draws the reader into the world of Morgan, Christen, Maddy and Jo.

This is due to the realism of dialogue, gripping scenes and pure energy in writing. There are times when a self-conscious ‘gritty raw emotion’ style can be just as irritating as the soft-focus type.

I think that C.C. manages to keep an edge without going overboard.

Like a rare wine, this is one of those books for which it’s worth looking a little bit harder and paying a little bit more.