In each of our lives, especially those filled with the secret agony of past abuse, there may come a time of gestalt, when we are finally able to face and break free from the torment of our memories to experience joy and love. Like many situations, “The Agony of Joy” begins in lighter tones before plunging into the dark themes that have scarred millions around the world.
From the ennui of London’s salons, to multicultural Berlin and finally to the shores of the sea of Okhotsk in far east Russia, “The Agony of Joy” details the first steps of healing for Irish model turned actor, Adrian Lee, and the mysterious Russian he meets who is far more than he first seems. Alexander Skizetsky is mesmerizing in his predatory grace, but beneath the attractive surface lies a soul of surprising depth with secrets of his own that are slowly destroying his belief in himself.
Synopsis: “Former model turned actor Adrian Lee can barely list age range ’23-29′ on his resumé anymore nor stand his life of empty social events and appearances, meaningless roles and casual partners. When he meets Alexander Skizetsky by clever arrangement of his agent, the enigmatic yet infinitely attractive Russian kindles a little light of hope in his aching heart. Yet even the beginnings of a romance beyond his wildest dreams cannot assuage a life spiraling out of control.
The long estrangement from his devout Irish parents and family and the dark secrets they all share combine to drive him to the brink of despair though Lexx is determined to stay by his side. After locking away his own memories of betrayal and loss, Lexx had decided never to love again but something in Adrian spurs the noblest intentions of his formerly jaded heart. Returning in pilgrimmage to his homeland, he brings Adrian along on a journey of revelation, rebirth, and redemption.”
Dealing with the difficult topics of depression and anxiety disorders, sexual and drug abuse, and familial rejection due to sexuality and lifestyle, among others, “The Agony of Joy” may primarily appeal to readers who enjoy serious, dramatic gay fiction but it is not without passion and hope. As one proofreader stated, “it’s a love story, but not a romance, definitely a gothic feel…”
For an excerpt of this contemporary gay fiction novel, please visit The Journey of Red Haircrow, on GLBT Bookshelf.