Author: Santino Hassell
Narrator: Rusty Topsfield
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Run Time: 8 hours and 54 minutes
At a Glance: This is a book that I will not only be rereading over and over, but now can sit back and listen to it again and again too.
Reviewed By: Karen
Blurb: Michael Rodriguez and Nunzio Medici have been friends for two decades. From escaping their dysfunctional families in the working-class neighborhood of South Jamaica, Queens, to teaching in one of the city’s most queer-friendly schools in Brooklyn, the two men have shared everything. Or so they thought until a sweltering night of dancing leads to an unexpected encounter that forever changes their friendship.
Now, casual touches and lingering looks are packed with sexual tension, and Michael can’t forget the feel of his best friend’s hands on him. Once problems rear up at work and home, Michael finds himself seeking constant escape in the effortless intimacy and mind-blowing sex he has with Nunzio. But things don’t stay easy for long.
When Michael’s world begins to crumble in a sea of tragedy and complications, he knows he has to make a choice: find solace in a path of self-destruction or accept the love of the man who has been by his side for 20 years.
Review: I don’t even know if I have the words to express how much I love this book, but I am going to give it a shot.
This is my favorite series of 2015, or at least it’s in the top three, and Santino Hassell co-wrote one of the others. There is realism in this author’s writing that I find myself drawn to: things aren’t sugarcoated, the characters are flawed along with their relationships, things in their lives are gritty and raw and all kinds of screwed up. That being said, though, there is absolute loyalty, unconditional love, forgiveness and the struggle to have to watch the person you love try to figure out how to save themselves before they are able to give themselves over to someone else.
Now that I have expressed how much I adore the story itself, I’ll get into the audio. I think Rusty Topsfield did a wonderful job narrating this book. I was a little unsure about Michael’s vocals when it started, but the more I listened, the more I enjoyed it. The voice distinction between the characters was fantastic; I don’t think there was even a chance of confusing who was talking just based on the voices. The inflection and emotion in the reading was spot on. The audio took a book that I already thought was pretty perfect, and gave me a whole new aspect to be able to enjoy. Sutphin Boulevard is a book that I will not only be rereading over and over, but now can sit back and listen to it again and again too.
You can buy Sutphin Boulevard here: