One of the most diverse and lively neighborhoods in the country, Chicago's BOYSTOWN has something for everyone. So it's no wonder that Jesse Morgan and Cole O'Brien chose to live there upon graduating from college. Ready go begin the next phase of their lives in an exciting new city, Jesse and Cole quickly find themselves at the center of a new group of friends.
Joyelle and Derek Mancini have been happily married for years, but Derek is harboring a secret that could tear them apart. Derek's brother Emmett is about to discover that his boyfriend Keith Colgan has a past that will haunt them both. Long time couple Logan Pryce and Max Taylor must face a crisis that neither of them expected. And, before they realize it, Jesse and Cole find themselves at the center of it all in the adult playground known as BOYSTOWN.
Welcome to BOYSTOWN.
5 of 5 Boystown Chicago
Okay, so let me start this review out by saying I have typed this review 11 times and deleted it 11 times because after reading this story I was amazed, shocked, stunned, and everything in between! I mean I was literally brain fu&^%$! I mean, I have never read a story like this one.
BOYSTOWN is written in "episodes," each ending in a cliffhanger. As you go through the episodes things start to heat up and you're like, holy eff what the hell is going on?
So we have Jesse and Cole who are in college and they are graduating and looking for jobs. They have both found their dream jobs in Chicago and are looking forward to graduating and starting their new lives.
Then you have the happy couple Joyelle and Derek. They are the perfect couple as Derek travels for work and Joyelle is an ER nurse and loves her job. They have been married for years and Joyelle is ready for more. She wants to make her family complete. But there is one thing about one of these individuals that will rock this relationship to the core. Will they survive this or will they walk away from each other?
Emmett and Keith are the perfect couple. They are so in love and do everything together. So much so that Keith is planning on doing something special for Emmett. But just as Keith thinks he is going to get his HEA, someone has decided that he will not get his HEA yet, and they plan on doing something very very naughty. Will Keith and Emmett survive this new (or old) threat to their relationship? Will someone try and hurt them? I will say this I LOVE Emmett and if something happens to him I will be flying to Chicago a lot sooner.... hint hint Jake!
Max and Logan have been together for a long time and everything seems to be spiraling out of control. One of them has a drinking problem and the other is left trying to help him when he does not want help. So what do you do when the person you love does not want you anymore? Do you move on quietly or do you fight like hell for the person you love to keep them even though you know they don't want you?
See what I mean? So much going on with these characters and then we add to the mix some other characters like Jacqueline who is one of the character's mother who finds herself in a relationship with someone younger and when her son finds out who it is, all hell is going to break lose because that guy has a HUGE secret and when it comes out, I don't think anyone will be left standing.
Then we have Ben who is connected to two of the characters and is falling in love with one of them but when the secrets and lies come to the forefront, all hell is going to break lose. Whoop whoop! What drama we get from my man Ben. He is a chocolate God, sex on wheels but I would not want to be him when shit happens.......
Then we have Nick, Todd, and Justin who are related to some of the characters by blood and by relationships and boy oh boy when the drama unfolds and shit hits the fan and the police are called who will be left standing and who will be dead??
Oh and that police officer is actually detective Michael Martinez and boy does he have a story to tell. Lord, makes me need some ice cold water something fierce because I was feeling very feverish reading about Michael. lordy....... lordy..... lordy.... CALIENTE!
So Boystown is a real place in Chicago and after reading this book, I told my husband I need to go there and visit because I have this image in my head that Jake put in it and I just have to go there and visit and get my book signed by Jake. I am so fan girling it is not funny. I mean I want to be in his brain so bad because that ending was like WTF? Really Jake? No you did not! Man oh man why is one of my favorite characters there?
This is a MUST READ male/male and male/female book but most of all I felt like I was there right in front of the characters living their lives with them, going through all their ups and downs and all their pain and grief they had. Jake you are BRILLIANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
A native of Chicago, Jake Biondi has been a resident of Chicago's BOYSTOWN neighborhood for twenty years.
Diverse in every possible way, BOYSTOWN serves as the backdrop for this cast of intriguing characters whose lives are connected in ways even they never thought possible.
Welcome to BOYSTOWN.
Goodreads AUthor Page
Interview With Jake Biondi:
Today on Kaidans Seduction we have a very special guest Jake Biondi author of Boystown (Season One). I have to say, Jake, I fell in love with Boystown right from the opening sentences to the very end. I can’t believe this is your debut book. I mean the way you write has totally drawn me in and kept me reading till late morning because I had to find out what would happen to the gang.
I am a fairly new reader of M/M books and I have to say that Boystown is on my top ten M/M reads for 2013. Thank you for stopping by and answering a few questions. I know readers want to know because dare I say I totally NEED to know the answers to some of these questions. So let’s get down to business shall we…..
1. What inspired you to write Boystown?
I have always been a fan of continuing dramas, whether they be classics such as the novels of Charles Dickens (which were released in magazines in installments, each of which ended with a cliffhanger to keep readers coming back for more) or more modern such as Dallas, Dynasty, and Revenge. I thought it was finally time for a well-written, intriguing drama that had gay characters at its core. And after living in Chicago’s Boystown neighborhood for twenty years, I thought to myself, “What better place to inspire a continuing drama?” Thus, my story was born.
2. I have never been to Chicago’s Boystown; can you briefly describe it for us?
Boystown is a neighborhood on the north side of Chicago along Lake Michigan. It is formally known as Lakeview, but its “nickname” is either Boystown or Wrigleyville (because the Chicago Cubs’ Wrigley Field sits in the heart of it). “Ground Zero” of Boystown is the intersection of Roscoe and Halsted Streets, which is where most of the gay bars are located. It’s the gayest and most diverse neighborhood in the Midwest, but recently it’s becoming more and more “straight” as straight couples and families move into the area. I wanted to make sure my story reflected those demographics by featuring some straight characters as well as characters of diverse ethnic backgrounds.
3. Jesse & Cole are graduating from college; what are their degrees in?
Haha, good question. I had both Jesse and Cole attend the University of Notre Dame because that’s where I went so that’s a campus that I know well. Plus, it is not the most “accepting” of homosexuals so I wanted to have two strong gay males on campus to acknowledge that students like Cole and Jesse do exist and attend the school. As for their majors, I’d have to say “business” because both of them accepted jobs in the financial district of Chicago.
4. Derek & Joyelle meet at their college reunion what brought them together?
They attended the University of Michigan (Notre Dame rivals that I also know well!) and met at a college reunion. They were introduced by friends and quickly fell in love. They did not know each other as students at Michigan.
5. Max & Emmett have been friends for a long time and they discussed opening a restaurant. Why didn’t they open one up?
As I’m sure you know, the restaurant business is a tough one. It’s risky and most new restaurants don’t make it. It’s a competitive market and occupation, and people who do well spend their lives at the restaurant; they don’t have much time for a social life. Max and Emmett talked about it more as a “dream” to try “one day”; they never explored the option seriously, until now, when their lives are at crossroads and they both want a new start in life. Will their dream become a reality? Stay tuned!
6. Why has Jacqueline kept the identity of Jesse’s father a secret?
Jacqueline was very, very young when she got pregnant and by the time she knew she was pregnant, she was no longer with the baby’s father. She is an independent and determined woman who didn’t want to be with a man who felt “obligated” to be with her just because of a pregnancy. So she never tracked the father down to tell him about his son and decided to raise Jesse on her own. But Jesse has always wanted to know his father and maybe someday soon, he will.
7. We didn’t get to read much about Cole’s family; where are his parents and does he have any siblings?
If Cole survives the cliffhanger at the end of the book, we may begin to learn more about his family and his past. Cole’s mother is living with cancer and is in a very fragile state. We don’t know much about Cole’s father or his family. In fact, there may be things that Cole himself doesn’t know.
8. Was Derek Cole’s first sexual encounter?
No, Derek has been discreetly meeting up with men when traveling on business trips for some time. Until Cole, those men were just “hook ups,” nothing more. But there was something about Cole and their Boston weekend together that awakened strong feelings in Derek, feelings that even he couldn’t shake long after returning home from Boston. And Cole was clearly smitten with Derek or he wouldn’t have manipulated things to ensure he found an apartment right across the street. The missing wedding ring may still cause some problems for them, as may Derek’s mysterious brother Justin.
9. Can you tell us what topping & bottoming means? Max punched Jesse in the face when Jesse called him “bottom boy.” Is that an offensive remark?
Haha, tops and bottoms, eh? I love these questions! In a gay relationship, the “top” is usually the one in control and, during intercourse, acts as the man would in straight sex. The “bottom” is usually more submissive in the relationship and during intercourse, the bottom “receives” as a woman would in straight sex. Some people prefer the terms “pitcher” and “catcher.” Hopefully, I don’t need to be any more explicit than that. Sometimes, calling someone a “bottom” can be an insult to his ego and “manliness.” Jesse was trying to insult Max and get under his skin when he made the remark.
10. What is wrong with Logan? Is he sick?
I would certainly describe Logan has having a drinking problem; he abuses alcohol. He uses drinking as an “escape” and a coping mechanism. It stems from his insecurity, always feeling inferior to Max for whatever reason. In the end, the drinking was just too much for Max to deal with on a regular basis. Logan seemed to have no regard for himself, his health, or his relationship with Max. But now that Logan and Jesse are interested in one another, who knows how the drinking will be affected or affect them?
11. Can you tell us about hottie Officer Michael Martinez? Is he gay as well because it does not really say when we read about him?
You know what is so interesting about Michael? I had no intention of even giving him a name! He was just going to be a minor character, the police officer assigned to the investigation of Emmett’s disappearance. But my characters tend to take on a lives all their own and all of a sudden I recognized the storyline possibilities for Michael. So I named him and he is now a permanent part of the cast. And, yes, he is a hottie! I deliberately did not state his sexual orientation explicitly but I think you can figure out which teams he plays on. His interest in Keith isn’t purely platonic.
12. This is your debut novel. How do you feel now that it is published and out in the world? How many more seasons can we look forward to reading about the gang?
I originally introduced Boystown as an online continuing story back in June. I planned to release a new “episode” once each month. Well before I knew it, I had over 1,000 online readers nationwide who began to write to me via Facebook begging for the next installment! They wanted to know what would happen to their favorite characters. So I sped up the release dates – and the writing process – and had released 10 episodes by November. And the audience continued to grow – from 1,000 up to 4,000 readers. The fun thing about releasing one installment at a time is that readers can write to me and actually influence what happens to the characters. I take all my readers’ comments to heart. Anyway, a friend suggested that I publish episodes one through ten as a book while I began working on episodes eleven and twelve. I had no intention originally to do publish it as book but I’m really glad I did. It’s exciting to walk through the neighborhood and see it in the windows of the bookstores.
13. What does the future hold for BOYSTOWN?
Well, it’s interesting. There has been a lot of interest from production companies and studios who want to turn BOYSTOWN into a television series. So I am exploring those opportunities now, in addition to writing additional episodes of BOYSTOWN for my readers. To have BOYSTOWN appear on HBO or Showtime or LogoTV one day would be a dream. Stay tuned!
Jake, thank you so much from the bottom of my heart for stopping by and sharing with your readers. I don’t often do interviews for authors because I never really know what to ask but I just could not get enough of Boystown and I needed some answers like I needed air to breathe. By the way, I am so Team Cole and Emmett that I hope they get a HEA!
That’s funny too – you have no idea how many readers have told me that they want Cole and Emmett to be together. It’s not a couple that I ever remotely considered. But who knows? Maybe I need to give the readers what – or who – they want?!