Blackmail, My Love

I’ve recently moved to San Francisco and wanted to find out a little more about the city’s history. I don’t do well with textbooks (even sleeping with them under my pillow doesn’t work) so I absorb facts from fiction using some form of osmosis. I’m always on the look out for a piece of fiction that can give me a interesting perspective on the place I’m living in.

blackmail

Blackmail, My Love did just that. It’s a decent LGBT murder mystery but it’s the world-weaving (yes, that’s a thing), which I like. The book is rife with the geographical and historical touchstones that I love. The author does a really good job of bringing the 1950’s LGBT community’s plight alive. SF back then was definitely not liberal and a new law meant (in a round about way) that police raids were stepped up and a lot of the LGBT community were beaten, or in the case of the protagonists brother… disappeared. It really shocked me. I’ve always thought of SF as being a liberal city, it never occurred to me that those rights had to be fought for. I knew it in the back of my head of course but there’s a difference between knowing something and seeing it happen to a character you can identify with.
I googled the author and found an interview where she says that she interviewed a lot of people who lived through those times, so I guess it’s as legit as it can be. I also liked the drawings throughout (not too many, I don’t like picture books) and it turned out that they’re prints that she’s made. That sealed the deal. I’m kind of obsessed with her.

In short. Plot decent. World-weaving (again, real thing) great. Author’s credentials + print skills = legendary. I don’t think I’ll ever see the streets of SF in the same way again.

Site Wide Redesign

Distant Spires is changing.

Messers Glen Delaney and Thomas Swift are proud to announce a site wide redesign that has recently begun, and will soon finish, allowing for far more regular updates in the future.

Additionally we are happy to begin a series of feature reviews which we will post regularly from now on. Glen’s in America, reporting on his favourite new discoveries across the pond, and Tom is embarking on an epic marathon of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld. And on top of that we’ve brought across a bucketload of old reviews from his old website for your convenience.

Expect plenty more material going forwards along with word of our next release which we should be completeing… sooon….