Released: April 2, 2014
GMR 5-Star Review
Told through the eyes of Calvin, a New York businessman and who is reaching 40 in the worst place to reach that age....the gay community. He is trying very hard to be part of what his friend, Peachy calls gayristocracy. Yes Peachy is one of a kind and he is extremely close to Calvin and their loyalty and friendship will be a very important factor in the basis of this story.
Now enters Joey who is the ideal dream boy/hottie for Calvin and a pornstar with such remarkable beauty and Calvin can't stop obsessing about this guy. I won't give much away about Joey as it would spoil much of the story for the readers. This funny and heartfelt story is for anyone who wants to know what its like to be gay today or for every gay man to read. I loved how it poked fun at the endless need to be young and beautiful in the gay scene. Also what drives that anxiety in these gay men who are obsessed in reaching that almost impossible dream of being young and beautiful forever...aka fountain of youth that seem to really inflict the gay community. I give so much credit and respect to this author for his mature and beautiful message that beauty is only skin deep but it's the people around you that make you a truly beautiful person.
I can't go on enough about this authors writing and what a complete joy it was to read his smart and intelligent novel...Looking After Joey by David Pratt. I highly and I mean highly recommend this novel to anyone who loves reading about the true gay community, a funny and delightful story and what beauty actually means!!!!
And just as important… Loyalty.
And the pleasure you experience watching someone you love grow. Kids can take inevitable steps in surprising ways or with breathtaking grace. We think, That’s my boy. Only he could have done that in that way.
As we keep growing, life knocks us down sometimes. I’m now thinking of Calvin, the hero of Looking After Joey. He has not been knocked down in a huge way. He’s just a bit worn down, like many of us. He has worn himself down. He needs to get out of himself. And then his favorite porn character, Joey Rhodes, with whom he has spent many an evening of lonely, virtual passion, suddenly falls right out of the TV. Into his living room. And somehow Joey can’t go home again. So Calvin has no choice but to look after Joey. He must find it in himself to love Joey in a way he had not counted on.
You love someone and look after them in that way for a while, but before you know it, it’s time for them to move on. Now, you look after them in a new sense, the sense of watching them leave. When Joey makes his own life (with the help of his this-world boyfriend Doug, but no more spoilers), Calvin faces the question of what to do with himself. He helped Joey grow. Now he needs to grow himself. In the final chapter he makes a coffee date with Joey, for no other reason than because he misses him. But just before that coffee date happens, fate intervenes to show Calvin what his own next step might be.
Have I said enough? No?? Okay. A quick Q&A with myself…
Q: Joey sounds very touching. But it’s also funny, right?
A: Oh, yeah. It’s effing hilarious! My only real marketable skill is making fun of things. My characters are a bunch of gay men living in New York City, so it was like mocking fish in a barrel!
Q: Who’s the cute guy on the cover?
A: Nicholas Gorham, an NYC writer, actor and model, photographed by Eva Mueller. Nicholas usually models in outrageous makeup and wild clothes, but he’s a very elegant and beautiful man just as he is, so I’m glad we were able to showcase that. You can see more of him in the book video, here.
Q: What if Nicholas steps out of the video?
A: Nicholas is a gentleman. He will expected you to treat him as one.
Q: Did you have as much fun writing those crazy characters—Peachy Sniegowski, Bunce van den Troell and Sir Desmond Norma—as people have reading about them? Or was it a lot of nose-to-the-grindstone work?
A: Yes and yes.
Q: Has anyone responded to Joey in a way that surprised you?
A: A couple of people have not liked it. I find this unacceptable.
Q: Why do you hate ABBA?
A: I don’t hate ABBA! Peachy and Calvin take Joey to the theater. I thought a parody would be more fun than a real Broadway show. But many of the big, brand name Broadway shows have nothing to spoof. Chicago and Lion King are actually good. Phantom is humorless (Tim Rice got custody of the sense of humor), which makes it hard to parody. That left me with You-Know-What. By the way, have you seen the French and Saunders mock trailer for the movie version? It’s in two parts: here and here.
Q: Does a gentleman ever remove his underpants?
A: Of course. I refer you to the character of Doug, Joey’s boyfriend. He is every inch a gentleman, and a bit of a dork, which I think is very sexy. Doug loves unconditionally. I imagine the passion is just volcanic when those underpants come off. It’s not shown, because: a.) the book is from Calvin’s point of view; and b.) in spite of the premise, this is not erotica. But I think those two just go nuts on each other, no pun intended. I don’t think Doug removes his underpants. He has Joey rip them off. He does the same to Joey. When they run out of underpants, they just don’t wear them.
Q: Do you wear underwear?
A: I think it’s time for you to click the “buy” link, right?
Finally, thank you, Paul, for publishing this, and thank you everyone for reading it and for your support!