Twelve O'Clock Tales is the fourth collection of short fiction by legendary novelist and memoirist, Felice Picano (The Lure, Like People in History, True Stories). A personal homage to the storytellers of his youth, Edgar Allen Poe, E.F. Benson, and H. P. Lovecraft, as well as his acquaintances, Arthur C. Clarke and Harlan Ellison. Thirteen dark tales, eerie, bizarre, and dreamlike, the tales will thrill and disturb, discomfort and titillate, enthrall and leave you wondering. Picano ranges across time and space, from tribal West Africa to the American heartland, to a lab in Venezuela, and a California Highway fifteen years from now. His characters range from a teen accident survivor with a secret, to a far-future scholar forced to travel to a galactic backwater, to a retired L.A. cop who dabbles in astrology, and a peasant girl in B.C.E. Israel encountering the strangest of strangers. The thirteen tales include brand new stories and acknowledged Picano masterworks collected here for the first time.
By Greg Herren
Joel Patterson should be happier than ever. He's just returned from a two-week vacation in London, where he met Philip, who might be the man of his dreams. Instead, Joel's heading to Maine for his mother's funeral. He quits his job to fulfill one last request for his mother: unload his parents' albatross of an RV by delivering it to an old family friend--in California.
Somehow, Joel's high school "friend" Lincoln has invited himself along on the ride--and into Joel's bed. The other person who's invited herself along? The ghost of his mother, who still has plenty to say about her son's judgment (or lack thereof). Joel has to get the RV to San Francisco, get rid of Lincoln, and get back to Philip. It would also make him feel better if he learned what's keeping his mother tied to this earthly plane. However Joel manages it, the route is likely to be anything but straight.
By Rob Byrnes
Contemporary Gay Romances is the third collection of short fiction by legendary novelist and memoirist, Felice Picano (The Lure, Like People in History, Ambidextrous). It is also his most diverse in terms of the times, places, themes, characters and situations he writes about. Filled with the unexpected, the true, and the amazing, Contemporary Gay Romances moves with ease from gas-lit, upper class London, to a future, climate-altered Bay Area; from semi-rural Florida to Southern California beaches, to an extrasolar planet where people have surprising existences. His characters range from ordinary American suburban housewives to extraordinary children, from grieving young geologists and memory-haunted middle aged men, to British Midlands soccer stars and 22nd Century war heroes. Picano subtitled this collection of stylish, unique, and moving works "Tragic, Comic, Mystic & Horrific," and they are all that and more. The ten tales include prize winners as well as stories published here for the first time, and are as different from any standard "romances" as you can get, but they will linger in the mind and memory.
By Greg Herren
A telling novel about gay life after Stonewall, Late in the Season is one of the finest novels in the long career of one of the founding members of the Violet Quill Club. Set on Fire Island in late September, this is the story of an unlikely pair of friends--a gay composer in his late thirties and an eighteen-year-old schoolgirl--both of whom are trying to make sense of their complicated lives. But much more than this, it is a compelling portrait of a magical time and place, after the Stonewall riots opened up so many possibilities and before AIDS forever changed the face of the gay world. Reprint.
Stories within stories, secrets buried for generations, and the ghostly presence of a tragic figure from Civil War times haunts a seaside Rhode Island town and the lives of sexually precocious cousins Roger and Chas Lynch. When grown up Roger returns to live in the town's "haunted house" with his new wife, he discovers its cruel story. And the cousins' love triangle plays out eternal cycles of passion, jealousy, and perhaps also redemption. Reprint.
Eros, art, and gorgeous blasphemy...
Adrianna Borgia, survivor of the Borgia court, presents Michelangelo with the greatest temptations of his life while struggling herself with soul-threatening desires and heresies. Her growing passion for the painter Raphaela Bramante mirrors the sculptor's damnable interest in a castrato in the Sistine choir and in the ideas of secular humanism. Claimed as the epitome of Christian inspiration, Michelangelo's ceiling is revealed as a coup of Eros upon religion, a gorgeous blasphemy and a paean to forbidden love in the very heart of the Church.