Customer Reviews for

Boystown: Three Nick Nowak Mysteries

Average Rating 4
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  • Posted May 26, 2014

    This is a collection of 3 novellas staring Nick Nowak, a former

    This is a collection of 3 novellas staring Nick Nowak, a former cop turned PI.  Set in Chicago in the early months of 1981, it shows us the pre-AIDS era, when indiscriminate unprotected sex didn't carry with it a fear of dying.  Each novella covers a different case that Nick is solving.  During those cases, we get glimpses into Nick's life so we start to form a whole picture.

    This is not a romance or even m/m.  It's gay fiction.  Yes, there's a lot of sex, but it's not very sexy or hot.  It's emotionless and mechanical.  This isn't a complaint.  I thought it fit the story.  Nick is rather emotionless and mechanical himself.  He seems to be just going through the motions, with sex and with life. 

    Nick lives a dreary life.  He's cynical about love and has shut down emotionally since his boyfriend left him.  He lives in a crappy basement apartment that's mostly empty since the ex took half their stuff and he just hasn't bothered to "fill the holes".  I don't think he just means the furniture.  He has frequent meaningless sex with the most inappropriate men, but really doesn't have to think about it since guys just kind of fall on him.  He's constantly being harassed by the police ever since he was forced to quit the force after being outed.  And his family pretty much disowned him.  Yet, I still felt little glimpses of hope.  Hope that Nick does want more and might even be open to it eventually.  

    The mysteries were interesting and Nick is fascinatingly flawed, so I'll definitely keep reading.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2013

    Good stories, hot sex

    I lived in Chicago for a while, and the fact that the stories in this book are set in Boystown was one of the things that caught my eye. I also like detective fiction, and gay detective fiction in particular. As of this writing, I have only read the first two. They are slightly connected and well-constructed. Although set in the 1980s, when things were some what different than when I lived there fifteen years later, I enjoyed the way Thornton used details to make the Chicago scene familiar and concrete. The protagonist, Nick Nowack, is a PI, a former cop who was outed at a time when that spelled disaster for his career, his love life and his relations with his family and society in general. It is a time I know well, and it reminds me of how far the world has come in 20 years.

    I recommend the book for the stories, the action and the quality of the writing. There are plenty of mostly gratuitous and improbable erotic episodes, if that adds to the appeal for you. Not a book for you if explicit scenes of gay sex bother you.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2013

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