Saturday, June 9, 2012

So, let's talk about Andi Marquette for a minute. I'm not sure why this author doesn't get more love from the community. Her books are very well written, plotted, and edited. No, they're not perfect, but they're much better than so many lesbian novels I see getting heaps of praise. 

I'll start with her Land of Entrapment, which is the story of K.C., a young, sociology post-doc who's hiding out on her grandfather's farm in Texas after an ugly breakup. Marquette manages to give us a ton of information about K.C.'s backstory with her ex, Melissa, without an ugly info dump. Melissa shows up after three years to beg K.C. to help her find her younger sister, Megan, who's disappeared after taking up with a white supremacist. K.C. it turns out is an expert on white supremacy groups and she reluctantly agrees to help the woman who cheated on her and broke her heart. 

There's a great story here and a romance that isn't the one you're necessarily expecting. Marquette handles the plot well and with the exception of a few over-the-top desciptive touches (especially during the love scenes, which was a bit bothersome), her prose style is clean and efficient. Her setting, Albuquerque, New Mexico, is so lovingly described it becomes a character in itself. My one issue is the lack of real jeopardy for the characters although this is a failing of most of the genre and Marquette's puts her characters in more danger than most. Especially Megan who we've begun to care for despite her potentially problematic character (she did take up with a racist, sexist asshole after all and it's a miracle Marquette can make her sympathetic). I'm not sure why so much of the lesbian fiction/romance genre tends to smooth over any real danger for their characters (or even worse, go over-the-top into pointless character torture), but it seems to be normal. I know it's hard to balance a gritty crime novel plot w/a believable romance, so I'm going to assume it springs from that. Marquette certainly manages it better than most. 

Marquette's the real deal. She can write, her characters are believable and likable, and her stories are actually compelling. In other words, you won't find yourself skimming over the 'story' to get to the racy bits. I highly recommend this author's crime novels and her sweet, crime-free novella, Some Kind of River )it's only .99 for the ebook!).

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