An engrossing saga of a gay man dealing with the sins of a lurid past while moving assuredly into the future.


The eventful life of a troubled young gay man comes full circle in this third installment of a series.  

The adventures of resilient protagonist Simon Powell continue in this novel, which charts his post-rehab existence after years of melodrama. He escaped a conservative upbringing and involvement with the Unification Church as a teenager, then intensive drug use with shady acquaintances in Southern California. Finally fed up with his string of bad luck coupled with years of poor life choices, Simon finishes a stint in rehab, then retreats to his birthplace of Sibley, Arkansas, and his family’s pre-Civil War timber mansion. Eager to recharge and reboot his life and start anew, he finds himself surrounded by ghosts of the past. Painful memories of his dead father’s judgmental criticism merge with childhood stories, all clouding Simon’s mind as he and his Los Angeles boyfriend, Thad (also fresh from a drug dependency program), begin moving into the mansion. As things progress and Simon settles into his new life with Thad, efforts are made to repair deep-rooted Southern familial ties previously severed by assumptions, misunderstandings, and anti-Christian lifestyle choices. A family reunion attended by Simon and his mother opens old wounds, but an offer to permanently remain at the mansion to resume marketing films and dabbling in his art endeavors takes him by surprise and seems like a solid plan. Eager to focus on his own work, Thad returns to LA to continue collaborating with an adult film producer, but Simon has reservations about his departure. As the lure of sinister influences begins to tempt Thad in California, Simon must deal with his mother’s failing health and, later, the sudden disappearance of his lover after some vengeful Spaniards from their past make their presence known. Poe (Endings, 2015, etc.) begins the story with flashbacks, sketching in the details of Simon’s checkered history. This narrative touch will familiarize uninitiated readers with the series and provide an appropriate amount of plot refreshing for loyal followers of Simon’s gritty, fraught journey. The author writes with more certainty and ease than he’s exhibited in previous volumes, though his impeccable sense of place remains solid throughout. The tale’s narrative moves from past to present seamlessly, laying out Simon’s situation candidly and without hesitation or overt exposition, which paves the way for plenty of melodrama and family tension. Though he’s come home to heal, there’s no denying that Simon’s problems have followed him to his hometown and still darken his days. This inability to resolve his issues may become wearisome to readers hoping that Simon will find some happiness after so many bleak periods of addiction. Alternately, for readers familiar with the series, Simon’s continual struggle with forgiveness, recovery, intimate relationships, and the momentum of his life is what gives Poe’s books their moxie.

An engrossing saga of a gay man dealing with the sins of a lurid past while moving assuredly into the future.

Pub Date: N/A

ISBN: 978-1-72907-843-3

Page Count: 287

Publisher: Time Tunnel Media

Review Posted Online: Sept. 11, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet


A first novel, this is also a first person account of Scout's (Jean Louise) recall of the years that led to the ending of a mystery, the breaking of her brother Jem's elbow, the death of her father's enemy — and the close of childhood years. A widower, Atticus raises his children with legal dispassion and paternal intelligence, and is ably abetted by Calpurnia, the colored cook, while the Alabama town of Maycomb, in the 1930's, remains aloof to their divergence from its tribal patterns. Scout and Jem, with their summer-time companion, Dill, find their paths free from interference — but not from dangers; their curiosity about the imprisoned Boo, whose miserable past is incorporated in their play, results in a tentative friendliness; their fears of Atticus' lack of distinction is dissipated when he shoots a mad dog; his defense of a Negro accused of raping a white girl, Mayella Ewell, is followed with avid interest and turns the rabble whites against him. Scout is the means of averting an attack on Atticus but when he loses the case it is Boo who saves Jem and Scout by killing Mayella's father when he attempts to murder them. The shadows of a beginning for black-white understanding, the persistent fight that Scout carries on against school, Jem's emergence into adulthood, Calpurnia's quiet power, and all the incidents touching on the children's "growing outward" have an attractive starchiness that keeps this southern picture pert and provocative. There is much advance interest in this book; it has been selected by the Literary Guild and Reader's Digest; it should win many friends.

Pub Date: July 11, 1960

ISBN: 0060935464

Page Count: 323

Publisher: Lippincott

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 1960

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet


While a few weeks ago it seemed as if Praeger would have a two month lead over Dutton in their presentation of this Soviet best seller, both the "authorized" edition (Dutton's) and the "unauthorized" (Praeger's) will appear almost simultaneously. There has been considerable advance attention on what appears to be as much of a publishing cause celebre here as the original appearance of the book in Russia. Without entering into the scrimmage, or dismissing it as a plague on both your houses, we will limit ourselves to a few facts. Royalties from the "unauthorized" edition will go to the International Rescue Committee; Dutton with their contracted edition is adhering to copyright conventions. The Praeger edition has two translators and one of them is the translator of Doctor Zhivago Dutton's translator, Ralph Parker, has been stigmatized by Praeger as "an apologist for the Soviet regime". To the untutored eye, the Dutton translation seems a little more literary, the Praeger perhaps closer to the rather primitive style of the original. The book itself is an account of one day in the three thousand six hundred and fifty three days of the sentence to be served by a carpenter, Ivan Denisovich Shukhov. (Solzhenitsyn was a political prisoner.) From the unrelenting cold without, to the conditions within, from the bathhouse to the latrine to the cells where survival for more than two weeks is impossible, this records the hopeless facts of existence as faced by thousands who went on "living like this, with your eyes on the ground". The Dutton edition has an excellent introduction providing an orientation on the political background to its appearance in Russia by Marvin Kalb. All involved in its publication (translators, introducers, etc.) claim for it great "artistic" values which we cannot share, although there is no question of its importance as a political and human document and as significant and tangible evidence of the de-Stalinization program.

Pub Date: June 15, 1963

ISBN: 0451228146

Page Count: 181

Publisher: Praeger

Review Posted Online: Oct. 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1963

Did you like this book?