Monday, 9 January 2012

Strange Bedfellows by Q Kelly

Frances Dourne, the daughter of a pastor had been sent to boot camp to turn her ‘straight’ for professing her love for her best friend. During the year she was there, she was beaten and abused. When she finally left the camp, she had convinced herself she was ‘cured’ and straight. She eventually married and had a child, Marissa.

Frances became the president of Gay Is A Choice. An organization that maintains they can show gay people how to become straight. What better example could they possibly have, other than Frances herself? Frances is now at a crossroads in her life. She has decided that she cannot go on living her life as lie any longer. She cannot keep on denying she is gay. She is aware of how much pain, suffering and damage both herself and GIC have put gay people through. Heaven knows, she’s suffered enough herself. She has made up her mind, she is going to publicly come out.

Elena Elise is a high class prostitute. She is hired by Frances, when Frances becomes disillusioned with her work, her own beliefs and the beliefs of GIC. Frances wants Elena to help her with her coming out plan.

Although the arrangement between Frances and Elena is strictly business, it doesn’t take long for them to both realize they are feeling more for each other than they should do. Will either woman allow herself to deviate from their arrangement?

When I first started reading this book, my first thoughts were ‘how can a homophobic head of an anti gay organization and a prostitute possibly have anything in common’? As I read on, it became apparent that this book was going to go far deeper and become more complex than I had expected.

Both women have one huge factor in common, they have both lost children. Frances lost her daughter when her gay ex husband kidnapped her ten years earlier. Elena lost her son when he had drowned three years earlier.

As the story progressed, I began to feel the pain that both women had suffered in their lives. The dislike I felt in the beginning for these characters, quickly turned around to sympathy and understanding for them both.

An extremely well written story with interesting characters. A real page turner and a pure delight to read. I read this book entirely in one sitting as I couldn’t wait to see how Q Kelly managed to wrap the story up. But she did and brilliantly too. I’m looking forward to Q Kelly’s next book.

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