Glitterland [NOOK Book]


Once the golden boy of the English literary scene, now a clinically depressed writer of pulp crime fiction, Ash Winters has given up on love, hope, happiness, and—most of all—himself. He lives his life between the cycles of his illness, haunted by the ghosts of other people’s expectations.

Then a chance encounter at a stag party throws him into the arms of Essex boy Darian Taylor, an aspiring model who lives in a world of hair gel, fake tans, ...
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Once the golden boy of the English literary scene, now a clinically depressed writer of pulp crime fiction, Ash Winters has given up on love, hope, happiness, and—most of all—himself. He lives his life between the cycles of his illness, haunted by the ghosts of other people’s expectations.

Then a chance encounter at a stag party throws him into the arms of Essex boy Darian Taylor, an aspiring model who lives in a world of hair gel, fake tans, and fashion shows. By his own admission, Darian isn’t the crispest lettuce in the fridge, but he cooks a mean cottage pie and makes Ash laugh, reminding him of what it’s like to step beyond the boundaries of anxiety.

But Ash has been living in his own shadow for so long that he can’t see past the glitter to the light. Can a man who doesn’t trust himself ever trust in happiness? And how can a man who doesn’t believe in happiness ever fight for his own?
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Editorial Reviews

USA Today bestselling author of Because of You - Jessica Scott
"Devastatingly beautiful. […] this book made me laugh out loud while sobbing. […] an amazing love story."
New York Times bestselling author - Stephanie Tyler
"[A] heartbreaking, hopeful, gorgeous story of love and forgiveness."
New York Times bestselling author - Laura Kinsale
"Simply the best writer I've come across in years."
New York Times bestselling author - Suzanne Brockmann
"Brilliantly written, dangerously good, immensely satisfying. I love this book. Deeply. Eternally. My favorite romance of the year."
Library Journal - Melanie C. Duncan
"STARRED REVIEW: By turns laugh-out-loud funny and tragically sad, Hall’s novel draws readers into this wonderful glitter-ball of a world. Highly recommended."
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940148594246
  • Publisher: Riptide Publishing
  • Publication date: 8/25/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 248
  • Sales rank: 336,430
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Alexis Hall was born in the early 1980s and still thinks the 21st century is the future. To this day, he feels cheated that he lived through a fin de siècle but inexplicably failed to drink a single glass of absinthe, dance with a single courtesan, or stay in a single garret.

He did the Oxbridge thing sometime in the 2000s and failed to learn anything of substance. He has had many jobs, including ice cream maker, fortune teller, lab technician, and professional gambler. He was fired from most of them.

He can neither cook nor sing, but he can handle a 17th century smallsword, punts from the proper end, and knows how to hotwire a car.

He lives in southeast England, with no cats and no children, and fully intends to keep it that way.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 29, 2013

    I was given this book and found it absolutely wonderful.  The di

    I was given this book and found it absolutely wonderful.  The dialogue was perfect and the prose was very, very well done. Everything worked in this book. I'm so glad I took the time to read it!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2013

    Angela shikany

    Suzanne Brockmann recommended this book on her site so I bought it. It's m/m romance but not just that the writing is so good it's lyrical and transcends genre classification while writing in a very topical way about life, love, and madness. A great debut novel.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 20, 2015

    more from this reviewer

    This unique and refreshing romance is the story of Ash and Daria

    This unique and refreshing romance is the story of Ash and Darian. Ash is a clinically depressed, bipolar writer working through his neuroses one day at a time. When he has a one night stand with flamboyantly gay model Darian it pushes all his buttons at once, leaving him panic stricken yet still undeniably drawn to this man completely out of his normal realm. They say opposites attract - but can two people so different find common ground?

    Well, one thing is for sure - this was definitely one of the strangest but most compelling romances I've ever read. It's told entirely from the point of the view of the mentally ill Ash (a feat in itself really) so you get the perspective of a man who is weaving his way through life one day at a time, hoping to someday find his footing again, but still experiencing bouts of utter despair and loneliness. Darian by contrast is this bright, glittery, presence - someone who shines light in Ash's darkest corners and is willing to take Ash any way he can get him. All he wants in return is the acknowledgment that he is a person worth loving, something difficult for a man who doesn't love himself to contemplate never mind give in return. When Ash turns off his mind, his body reacts to Darian in the most basic of ways and the sex scenes between them are emotional and well written. Throughout the story are some deviously humourous lines that had me bursting out with laughter. From beginning to end I found it a captivating tale of desire, love and the meaning of true friendship. 5 stars!

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  • Posted December 19, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Christina Marie at The Morning After Romance: Beauti

    Reviewed by Christina Marie at The Morning After Romance: Beautifully written, amazing story!

    I love so many many things about the writing in Glitterland. I'll elaborate on those things in a bit. First, I just want you to know that the words had me connecting on such a deep level that they basically melded with my brain and made me feel complete. That's right Alexis Hall, you complete me. Stop me when I cross the line into melodrama. I'm not sure why, but I loathe the cover. It doesn't matter though, because this book is AH-MAZING.

    I intended on summarizing the plot here, but instead I've decided to summarize my reading experience: I fired up my creaky old kindle, read one page, and then had to pause for a moment of reflection upon the fact that I had just experienced the book nerd's equivalent of insta-love. I read a teensy bit more, and decided I needed to take some time to stalk the author on all forms of social media in order to ensure that I would be immediately updated about any upcoming releases, book signings, and profound pearls of wisdom in 40 characters or less. I returned to reading, and did not stop to blink in the hours that followed. Now, it is a possibility that the writing may not be for everyone. A possibility that is hard to imagine since I love it so hard. But, I will note that Darian's accent may prove problematic for some readers, and there is the slight tinge of purple in the prose (it is gorgeous prose and I love it). However, I thought it was masterfully done and would not want anything to change. I love Glitterland down to its sentences. In the end, my eyes may have been a tad gritty, but I was left feeling supremely satisfied. In short, you should probably stop reading this rather lengthy review and go read Glitterland. It's worth the eye grit.

    Ash Winters, clinically depressed and critically pretentious, meets Darian Taylor, a glittering ball of awesome. Despite his intentions, Ash finds himself fascinated by Darian. The book is told from Ash's POV. I loved him. I hated him. Really, it's all ups and downs where Ash is concerned. Mostly, I understood and related to him. Ash is pretentious, but I appreciated his humor. He is self-deprecating (and everyone-else-deprecating), sometimes cheeky, but mostly dark and morose. Ash struggles with his depression throughout the book, as it is a major source of conflict. The descriptions of his depression are incredible. I could feel everything spiraling away from Ash during his panics. I could feel his lack of control over his illness, his sense of helplessness. It was overwhelming. It was fascinating. Even in those moments I loathed him, I still understood and was rooting for him. Again, the writing is great, brilliant really. I loved it all...until the accent. Which brings me to Darian.

    I almost took a star off due to how irritating Darian's accent is to read. The way some of the words are spelled requires serious contemplation to figure out. I'm convinced that a few have no origin in the English language. That being said, it all grew on me. I think this is due to Darian himself. It's impossible not to love him. I really fell in love with his character, despite the fact that I couldn't stand his accent at the start and thought he was a bit superficial. Here's the thing though. Darian may have some physical aspects that are artificial (from his fake eyelashes to his fake tan), but nothing about him as a person is artificial. His personality shines through it all. Naturally, since he is a shiny glitterball. He is just such a sweetheart. Darian is honest, kind, maybe even a little naïve. He is one of those rarities, an all around good person. Darian Taylor, without a doubt, is top 5 on my favorite characters list.

    So, my irritation with the accent dwindled the longer I read, and I like to think that was the point. Ash thinks Darian's accent is difficult to understand, and exasperating. Despite his attraction, Ash finds Darian's entire person annoying (albeit fascinating) in the beginning of the book. That annoyance grows into something completely different over time. It's all a lesson in looking beneath the surface, and not judging people superficially.

    If Alexis Hall meant for readers to find the accent irritating, but love Darian despite this as we got to know him. Mirroring Ash's own experience with Darian. Then that is some serious writing ninja skills, and the reason I left the star. If it was unintentional, I don't care because it's unintentionally genius.

    I particularly love the dynamic between Ash and Darian. Their interactions are perfection. They are both very different, so it makes for these little hilarious nuggets of miscommunication, which made the dialogue realistic. I also thought it was great how Ash doesn't completely like Darian from the start. Darian creeps under his defenses, and Ash falls for him. Ash simply likes the way he feels around Darian. I love that it isn't a case of Ash liking Darian despite all his quirks; he just likes him, quirks and all.

    There is a lot of character growth. While the book has typical elements one would expect in a romance, it doesn't stop there. It is very much about Ash, his struggles with depression and anxiety, learning to cope, and developing to the point where he can sustain a relationship with another person. I feel like Glitterland is equal parts about the romance between him and Darian, and Ash growing as a person. It is super sweet, at times amusing, with a heavy dose of melancholy. But, it still manages to be grounded in reality.

    Overall, I think the writing is beautiful. The characters are amazing, flaws and all. I didn't always like Ash, but I loved being in his POV. I shared his pain due to the descriptive capability of the author. I fell in love with Darian and his accent. I greatly enjoyed getting to know the both of them. I beyond loved this book, and I highly recommend it!

    One more thing, I never read the end stuff. But I did not want to stop reading when I reached the last page. So I went on to read the author bio because I just wanted all Alexis Halls words. I'm glad I did though, as there is a recipe at the end written by Darian. I love it. I decided to try it out, and it was delicious! Basically, this book is good it got me to cook. That almost never happens.

    *ARC courtesy of Riptide Publishing via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

    5 Stars.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2013

    Great characters

    I really enjoyed this book and couldn't put it down. I really enjoyed Darrian's character. Very sweet.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews

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