Kim Fielding Guest Post: Gentrification

Gay Book Reviews is thrilled to have Kim Fielding on the blog today chatting about her latest book Love is Heartless.


My newest novel is Love Is Heartless. And mostly it’s a romance between a prickly police detective and a sweet man who loves musicals and his cat, Legolas. The book includes murder mysteries too, and what my editor called a meet-cute at a crime scene. One of the subplots, however, involves that sweet man’s struggle with what to be when he grows up. Colin Westwood is thirty, and some might argue that’s a little late to be wrestling with that decision. But due to a serious childhood illness, overprotective parents, and a smooth career path into his father’s company, Colin has pretty much just gone with the flow. Until now.

Colin’s father owns a property development company. They buy old, decrepit houses, tear them down, and build condos and townhomes in their place. It’s a lucrative business. And it reflects the reality of Portland, Oregon, where the story takes places. Property values are high, and it doesn’t make sense to pour a bunch of money into fixing up an old house when you can squeeze in a couple of brand-new homes in its place.

But while this practice makes sense from a business perspective, there are costs to the community. One cost is a squeeze for parking spaces, because Portland allows these new structures to be built without garages or dedicated parking lots. In theory, the new residents will use public transportation. In reality, they own cars, and pretty soon parking in residential areas becomes impossible.

More importantly, though, some people believe that replacing old houses with new multifamily structures damages the character of neighborhoods. Nobody wants to live next to a falling-down shack, but they don’t necessarily want it replaced by another boring condo. Old houses have history; they have heart and soul.

If you’re a property developer, you might be faced with the question of whether it’s more important to maximize profits or maintain the charm of a community. This the dilemma Colin encounters. Now he has other issues to deal with too—like his growing attraction to Nevin Ng, who doesn’t do relationships. And then there’s the matter of Colin’s murdered or missing elderly acquaintances. Colin—as people on home improvement shows are apt to say—has a lot to think about.

Title: Love is Heartless (Love Can’t #2)
Author: Kim Fielding
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: January 13, 2016
Genre(s): Contemporary
Page Length: 254
Reviewed by: Gigi and Natosha


Small but mighty—that could be Detective Nevin Ng’s motto. Now a dedicated member of the Portland Police Bureau, he didn’t let a tough start in life stop him from protecting those in need. He doesn’t take crap from anyone, and he doesn’t do relationships. Until he responds to the severe beating of a senior citizen and meets the victim’s bow-tied, wealthy landlord.

Property manager and developer Colin Westwood grew up with all the things Nevin never had, like plenty of money and a supportive, loving family. Too supportive, perhaps, since his childhood illness has left his parents unwilling to admit he’s a strong, grown man. Colin does do relationships, but they never work out. Now he’s thinking maybe he won’t just go with the flow. Maybe it’s time to try something more exciting. But being a witness to a terrible crime—or two—was more than he bargained for.

Despite their differences, Colin and Nevin discover that sparks fly when they’re together. But sparks are short-lived, dampened by the advent of brutal crimes, and Colin and Nevin have seemingly little in common. The question is whether they have the heart to build something lasting.

Love Can’t Series

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About Kim

Kim Fielding is very pleased every “me someone calls her eclectic. Her books have won Rainbow Awards and span a variety of genres. She has migrated back and forth across the western two-thirds of the United States and currently lives in California, where she long ago ran out of bookshelf space. She’s a university professor who dreams of being able to travel and write full “me. She also dreams of having two perfectly behaved children, a husband who isn’t obsessed with football, and a house that cleans itself. Some dreams are more easily obtained than others

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