Title: A Summit City Christmas
Author: Ethan Day
Cover Artist: Lex Valentine
Publisher: MLR Press
Edition: Fist Edition
Buy Link: Amazon.com
Genre: Contemporary M/M, holiday
Length: Short story/54 pages/14K words
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Review Summary: A fitting “almost” finale to a wonderful series. 🙂
Holiday’s with friends and family are never dull and Boone’s first Christmas in Summit City is no exception to that Yuletide rule. You are cordially invited to join Boone and Wade for a Christmas Eve extravaganza, including many of your other favorites from the Summit City – Sno Ho series.
This book is not a standalone so if you haven’t read Sno Ho and Life in Fusion both of which I reviewed and linked, you should stop right now and get them before you read A Summit City Christmas because the story might be confusing for you. The characters, of which there are many, were all introduced in the previous books and their idiosyncrasies at times test the rules by which regular people play. Now I will try to review Ethan Day’s newest opus. 🙂
It’s Christmas Eve at chez Boone and Wade, and Boone is musing about the day ahead especially how the families would get along. Since the holidays are about traditions, he worried about how his and Wade’s new life would blend with their old memories. He really was counting his blessings, if you can imagine such a complex, but vain man appreciating the folks in Summit City; most of all he was thankful for Wade and not just because he worshipped the ground Boone walked on. 🙂 His character had mellowed a bit from Life in Fusion but not so much as to be unrecognizable or heaven forbid, sweet. The number of family members and other guests attending the Christmas Eve dinner would make it a huge event and there was no telling when, not if the situation would escalate.
Boone was right to be concerned that things might get out of hand because when his parents showed up at his house to ice what seemed like hundreds of cookies, his mom Dixie the former Miss Texas, was “fully painted for war, her make-up perfectly applied, despite having more of it on than any one individual ever should, her dark brown hair piled up on top of her head, teased into a poofy bouffant.” She drove everyone nuts with her pushiness and efforts to get help with icing the cookies. His father Rocky wasn’t far behind Dixie – he sported the same Rick Springfield style hair cut that he’d had since the mid eighties and his job consisted of trying to calm her before she exploded.
Christmas fun started with the humungous tree that Wade brought home. It was almost too big to fit inside the house, but worse than the tree were the decorations from his childhood to which he was very attached even though they looked like they should have been consigned to a fire pit or sent into space a long time ago because they were so godawful ugly and dirty. Lonny, one of the twins who along with his brother Donny were staying at the house for Christmas, was annoying Wade by getting a lot of pleasure out of reminding him that Boone was not exactly a virgin before they met. This was a typical exchange between Wade and Lonny”
“He wouldn’t have half the tricks in his repertoire without all that practice, studly,” Lonny said.
“Gah!” Wade yelled, flinging a hand through the air as if trying to deflect the words away.
“Listen here, Gold-medal Man.” Lonny said. “You of all people should understand that repetition is key.”
I loved the descriptions of the characters, like this gem:
The twins were much like a cartoon character whose glossy and sweet, over manipulated appearance drew you in, never suspecting anything might be wrong until their mouths opened revealing a slutty underbelly.
Of course Ethan is at his dirtiest and best when describing the various sexual shenanigans that Wade and Booth get into, risking life and limb, and I wonder if he practices these moves before writing them down to make sure they work.
Even with Dixie stabbing cookies with her knife and rounding up reluctant help wherever she could find it and other strange goings on, this book was about togetherness, family and friends whose love was evident despite the disparate group that made up Wade’s and Boone’s world. I love Wade’s sister Jackie who was probably the only living person in Summit City that didn’t buy into his god like image just because he had won 3 Olympic medals years ago. This made him more of a regular human being with feet of clay and was a welcome relief from the worshipping townspeople.
The lines were never ending especially between Boone and his best friend Gabe whose ego was fragile and Boone loved to play with him. Ethan didn’t disappoint as the story was sprinkled with dialogue that made me chortle and I would have snorted except I’m not a snorter. 🙂 I wish I could bottle some of it when I attend a few lame ass cocktail parties during the holidays. But the best was a tender moment between Boone and Wade that the author saved for last, but of course Boone had to one-up him. You will have to buy the book to understand what I mean.
I think that this is probably the final book we will be reading about Boone and Wade, which is a pity and not only because the MCs are so enjoyable, but the whole menagerie that surround them are gut busting hilarious and it would take me at least three more pages to give you highlights so I won’t. Suffice it to say that Ethan’s prose and dialogue here are just as good as in Sno Ho and Life in Fusion and I enjoy his characterizations a lot more than I do most other authors’ because they rock in a strange kind of way. 🙂
NOTE: So after I said goodbye to Wade and Boone Ethan informed me that they haven’t gone YET. He’s apparently writing another opus, a novel, but I wouldn’t hold my breath because he’s not exactly the fastest writer in the world. Maybe in a couple of years the book will be released. 🙂