Saturday, 15 June 2013

Hobbled, John Inman


- Review by Cindi

4.5 out of 5 stars

Danny Shay can't catch a break.  Leaving his mother the bitch and horrible stepfather back in Indiana all eighteen-year-old Danny wants to do is spend the summer (hopefully longer) with his father in San Diego. He gets a job at a fast food joint and things are starting to look up.  That is, until he discovers his boss has been skimming money from each employee by playing around a little bit with the time cards.  Danny loses his temper. Not only does he cause property damage, he also causes physical damage... to himself in the form of a broken leg.  Charges are pressed against him and with the help of his father is sentenced to six weeks house arrest. No going beyond a prescribed perimeter set up by the court.  He must wear an ankle bracelet at all times.  If the little green light on the ankle bracelet turns red, Danny will be picked up by the police and taken to jail.  

The last thing he wanted was for the neighbors to enjoy the sight of twenty squad cars screaming up to the house and a shitload of cops hauling Danny off to the hoosegow, kicking and screaming, just because he had overstepped the limits on his ankle monitor.

On top of all that, Danny has finally come to the definitive conclusion that he is 100% gay.  He's still a virgin and he is eager to rid himself of that little problem as soon as he can.  The house arrest thing quickly puts a damper on those plans.  At least Danny will have his father for company during his house arrest, right?  Wrong.  Two hours after promising the judge to stay in town and keep an eye on his son, Mr. Shay gets a call about a business trip that he must go on......... for three weeks.  Thus leaving Danny alone stuck in the house with nothing but the television, internet and incoming phone calls and a nice set of binoculars that Danny uses to spy on the neighbors. Danny's house arrest includes no outgoing calls.  Under no circumstances is Danny to bring any attention to himself or to step outside of the yard.  Doing so would not only hurt Danny but it would hurt Danny's father as well.  

It only takes a few days for Danny to get good and bored with no company except his father's crazy cat, Frederick... and of course, his right hand.  That virginity thing, you know. 

God, he was pathetic.  He really had to get laid.  He really, really, really had to solve this virginity problem and come out as a proud gay man and simply get laid.  His dad would be surprised he was gay, he supposed, and his mom would throw a conniption fit, of course, but sometimes a guy just has to do what a guy has to do, and Danny's dick was screaming at him to just get the job done already.

Then something happens that changes the entire course of Danny's lonely existence.  A new neighbor moves in next door.  A hot new neighbor.  Young, around Danny's age and with no obvious parental guidance to speak of.  It doesn't take long before Danny meets the new guy, Luke. Hot Luke who Danny hopes (really hopes) will be his cure for that pesky little virginity problem.  Luke has come from Tucson to unload a moving van and his father will meet him there in a couple of weeks.  Eighteen like Danny, Luke is all alone in a big old house.  The two meet and it doesn't take long before the virginity thing is a thing of Danny's past and the two boys are spending almost every waking and not waking moment together.  Unfortunately, there is a serial killer on the loose who kidnaps and kills boys around Danny and Luke's age and Danny's father is concerned about his son being home all alone.  When he is informed (not that informed) of Danny's new friend, his father seems a tad too interested but Danny brushes that off as nothing.  Danny's father has no idea he is gay but now that he has found the 'love of his life' he is determined to come out of the closet to him as soon as he is back in San Diego.  His father has his own secrets to share.

There are a few secondary characters that were humorous.  Bradley and DeVon are the ten-year-old neighborhood boys who are in search of the serial killer.  They have no obvious parental supervision and can be seen prowling the streets all hours of the day and night doing their investigating.  They made me laugh more than once with their bad boy, bratty ways.  Typical little boys with an attitude.  I adored them.

"It's no skin off our noses if you like to chew the dingdong.  Hell, I got an uncle that's queer.  He chews on dingdongs, too.  He gave me a bicycle last Christmas."

Whatever that had to do with it, Danny thought.

Bradley threw his two cents' worth into the pile. "Yeah, and I've got two aunts that chew dingdongs. And a gardener that does, too.  The gardener's name is Raul."

DeVon turned to Bradley with a scathing grimace on his face.  "If your two aunts chew on dingdongs that don't make them gay, you idiot.  The gardener, yeah.  But the aunts, no."

Bradley blinked and his ears turned red.  "What does that make them then?"

"Sluts.  To be gay they'd have to like licking pussies.  That would make them lezbos.  Which is Latin for gay." 

Then there is Mr. Childers, a neighbor.  Bradley and DeVon are convinced that he is the serial killer.  Danny and Luke only see him as the hot older man who looks good without a shirt on.  A female neighbor who lives up the street and is constantly wearing curlers and hiding her Gin bottle stash adds a bit to the story as well.  

Danny and Luke don't put much stock in the serial-killer-being-in-the-neighborhood-theory regardless of what the boys say.  All they care about is getting each other naked. Often. Unfortunately, the killer is much closer than they realize and Luke and Danny have unknowingly placed themselves in his sights.  Before long the boys (as well as Bradley and Devon) put themselves in a dangerous position that almost costs them (and others) their lives.

This is another really good story by John Inman.  I have become such a fan since I read his first one and I am always eager to read his new releases as soon as they are available.  Hobbled was no exception.  It has the classic John Inman humor as well as some serious stuff thrown in.  You pretty much have to suspend belief with a few things.  There is insta-love that I felt looked more like typical teenage boy lust but it's written well.  While the boys are both eighteen this could never, NEVER be considered a Young Adult book as it is very sexual.  The sex is also written well.  The ending was extremely unrealistic but fitting for the story.  The lack of realism did not take away from the story for me in any way.  I was entertained from the first page until the end.

This book was provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange for a fair and honest review.


  1. I feel like I am reading a book today with all your book reviews - did I say I'm glad you're back? :) I'm just kicking back eating something having a hot drink and enjoying. You love your John Inman books. This sounds like some fun with a bit of suspense thrown in.

    1. I feel like I have completely overtaken the blog today. I'm glad to be back too. I hated reading this book several days ago and not being able to put it on here before today. You do know my love for this author's work so I wanted to "share my love" as soon as I read it but was unable to do so before now.

      The book was a blast. Funny but yet serious in a few places. Another great one by him.