Other Reviews: Goodreads
This week was to begin with a rant/ramble for the whole NC Amendment One thing. But then I realized that no one would really care about my opinion. So, instead I reviewed Jet Mykles’ Just for You. This week’s blog post is going as an alternative to be about humor, love, and the human spirit.
Justin meets Kevin on the street and proposes a date immediately. The problem? Kevin is straight. The good news for Justin is that Kevin needs a favor: to pretend to be his boyfriend to impress his gay boss, Victor Chen. But what happens when fiction becomes reality?
This is a single book, but Jet Mykes also has a series called Heaven Sent, which is rock-star based. The cover art is absolutely gorgeous, by P.L. Nunn. [Note that the artwork is homoerotic and some is extremely explicit]. The drawings are based on Yaoi, which means “Boys’ Love” in Japanese, and can be seen in anime, magna (comics), and novels. This seems to be the realm of the Heaven Sent series, as well as Just for You of Jet Mykes, a more light-hearted world of androgynous men loving men.
I adore this book and author. Certainly in the “real world” acceptance to gay relationships is not this positive and widespread; but there is an effervescence surrounding this world that I just cannot pass up. It is the result of the author’s unique voice. Yes, there is some angst, but we do not see anything about gay bashing or any other negative theme.
This is a sub-genre of LGBT Contemporary romances called, “Gay for You”. Basically, you end up with a straight man that realizes that he is gay, usually when he meets our hot stud. In this case, that would be one Justin Tolliver.
“Gay for you”, is an unlikely sub-genre. After all, should you not know if you are attracted to other men after puberty? Except it is a very popular theme, and one in which I enjoy reading, no matter how unrealistic I think it can be. In Just for You, Kevin is straight, or at least has not had any gay experiences. At first, he fights the attraction to Justin, after all if he was gay, wouldn’t he already know it? A quote from the book:
He’d heard plenty of stories about guys who were gay who spent years or even their whole lives denying it, being miserable. He wasn’t miserable. He hadn’t previously thought he was missing out on anything. Okay, he didn’t get out much and didn’t have much of a social or sex life to speak of, but he wasn’t profoundly unhappy. If he was denying being gay, shouldn’t that be more of what he felt like?
This makes Kevin such an interesting character. What he finds in Justin, is a friend, someone intriguing, and who he is sexually attracted. He is not tortured, but a happy human being. He has the courage to explore this attraction, rather than spending chapters of denial and angst.
Justin is probably what you would consider the “stereotypical gay man”. He is gregarious, fit, well manicured, and in the fashion industry. He is such a vibrant, upbeat person and we see this early on in the book:
Justin beamed. Kevin had a gorgeous, full laugh, bright as a child’s. He was loosening up beautifully, losing his nervousness. Justin knew the phenomenon that he was, and he used it well.
Justin has such charm and he uses it to his advantage as he pursues our Kevin. It is Justin’s pure aura that we just cannot help but fall in love.
The book is rather short, so I do not think that a complex theme would have time to develop. So for me, I think the theme follows the universal one of acceptance of one’s self. Sometimes you just have to take the risk to follow your heart.
The sense of humor! A quote after Justin gets a call from Kevin and he suspects that he might be getting a booty-call:
“I know!” Justin pulled his hair as he stormed into the bathroom. “I don’t know! My gay hell, what do I do?”
“Do you think you turned him?”
“Oh gads, do you think so?”
There were many times when a “stereotypical” gay thing would happen (think a Will and Grace moment) and I would laugh, not at them, but with them. This novel was just a joy to read.
I wrote earlier about Mykles unique voice, and I believe it is her purity of spirit. The story might have some angst and conflict (otherwise it would be a boring book), but there is no meanness. I guess to best explain, think of some quirky and innocent movies, like The Princess Bride, or Little Voice. Just finish the book and smile, feeling happy and your spirit lifted.
What could be better?
The plot is rather uncomplicated, so if you are looking for hard-hitting topics like gay bashing, or some sort of murder mystery, this book is not for you. It also was rather short (at 152 pages), most of Mykles books that I have read are brief. This makes me nervous, that perhaps she cannot write a more complex novel.
I love this book for the uniqueness. It does not try to be complicated with huge subplots, but rather the point of the book is the love story. The story is sweet and pure, with hot sex! This book has become one of my favorites if I just want to sit back and feel happy and safe. No vampires or stalkers will be chasing me in my dreams when I go to sleep. The downside is that is that it is rather brief and un-complex, so you feel as if there should have been more character and relationship development. But despite these limitations, I just cannot help loving this book.