4 Star Review for The Backup by Erica Kudisch #MM #Fantasy

CoverTitle: The Backup
Author Name & Publisher: Erica Kudisch (Riptide Publishing)
Publication Date & Length: January 25, 2016 – 346 pgs


I’m supposed to be better than this. I’m supposed to have a tenure-track job teaching music history to undergrads, writing papers about Bach, and proving to kids like me that you can work your way out of Harlem. I’m not supposed to be following a rock star around the country, fetching his mail, making sure his groupies are of age.

I’m definitely not supposed to be sleeping with said rock star, who claims to be the Greek God Dionysus. At first I thought it was a load of crap. Nik’s fans might think his music captures their hearts—and souls—but I knew better. Until one of Nik’s orgiastic concerts gets out of hand and I don’t know which is worse: that he might be a god after all, or that he has a body count.

Nik doesn’t care what I want or what I should be. He wants to tear down the world I’ve built, warping all I am, until his music is all that’s left of me. I can’t let him do that. I shouldn’t believe in him. I’ve seen what happens to the people who believe in him.

But I can’t get his song out of my head.

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Bacchus is the rockstar Nik. Anthony is the boy who can’t play music. Not real music, anyway. There is so much music in this, singing and screaming off the page, in quiet piano moments, in iPods and soundproof rooms and concert halls. It’s wonderful.
Erica writes vividly and lusciously.  The characters, at first unlikeable (but not TOO unlikeable) are slowly revealed. Depths, conflicts, pain, and the human and religious experience. This is a novel to be experienced, rather than read, and it’s addicting.
The good: Protagonists of color, a solid grasp of classical music, a tactile setting.
The bad: Nonconsensual sex, a non-evocative title.
This book is risky. Read a preview first, to see if you can stand it. Splendor awaits. Disclaimer: I know nothing about music. I still loved it.
Four stars.
~ C. E. Case


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Erica Kudisch lives, writes, sings, and often trips over things in New York City. When not in pursuit of about five different creative vocations, none of which pay her nearly enough, you can usually find her pontificating about dead gay video games, shopping for thigh-high socks, and making her beleaguered characters wait forty thousand words before they get in the sack.

In addition to publishing novellas and short stories as fantastika-focused alter-ego Kaye Chazan (What Aelister Found Here and The Ashkenazi Candidate, both available at Candlemark & Gleam) Erica is responsible for the BDSM musical Dogboy & Justine, and serves as creative director and co-founder of Treble Entendre Productions.

She also has issues with authority. And curses too fucking much.


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Filed under 4 Star, C. E. Case, M/M, New Release, Review

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