The Queer and the Restless, by Kris Ripper
Series: Queers of La Vista #3
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Release Date: October 31, 2016
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Ed Masiello has been on testosterone for a year, is working his dream job as a reporter, and is finally passing as a man (so long as you don’t ask his abuela). But the investigation of a murder case is starting to take over his life. Afraid he’s becoming obsessed, he goes to the local club to relax, and meets the flighty, whimsical Alisha.
Alisha is a free spirit who’s tossed aside ambition for travel and adventure. Her approach to life is a far cry from Ed’s, and while Ed has always assumed that meeting his goals would make him happy, Alisha is much more content than him—despite all the plans she can’t yet fulfill.
As their relationship heats up, so does the murder case. Alisha thinks Ed needs a break, but someone’s got to find this killer, and he wants to be there when it all goes down. Besides, taking off into the great unknown with Alisha is crazy. But opting for what’s safe is just another way of living in fear, and Ed vowed to stop living like that a long time ago.
POC (Person of Color)
LGBT Youth Center
This book of the Queers of La Vista series is my favourite so far. I had such a good time reading it and I enjoyed every single minute of it. Especially when it comes to reading contemporary romance that is something I cannot say that often, so this is high praise coming from me. I really have nothing to even niggle about and so you could just go and buy the book right now 😉
From the very first page on I loved Ed. He’s just the right amount of confident and still needing to figure things out. He’s smart and funny, neither over the top nor plain, but just the guy you’d love to have as a friend. I understood his feelings and could relate to him on a deep level.
Like Ed, I’d totally fall for quirky and adventurous Alisha. She’s sexy and impulsive and it’ll make you happy to be around her. She’s real and fun and I think I have a crush on her. I am not sure I would have gone with her on that hiking trip, though. WTF. Like. WTF. My J would never hear the end of it in this life time. But when Alisha meets Ed’s (jock type) roommates, I couldn’t stop laughing because she was just fucking perfect and hilarious. I think you should really meet her but remember, I called dibs.
Ed’s and Alisha’s relationship is beautiful in their very simplicity. That might sound weird to you but I absolutely love that they just don’t have a big fat drama or issues to work through. They reminded me of my J and myself. Of course, when you’re a new couple you need to figure things out and you have the one or other fight but it doesn’t always have to be life and love threatening. I wish their were more books with these kind of simple relationships out there.
Here’s a small passage that I found beautiful and fitting:
“This is why I came out here tonight,” she murmured.
“You came out here to kiss me?”
“To be kissed by you. There’s a difference.” Her hands guided me loosely until both of us were moving together. I touched her hair, her shoulders, her arms, sheathed in sheer black sleeves that were loose at her wrists. It was still fun, with a thin vein of something serious running through it. We danced, laughing at each other, kissing a little more, but never too much. Her hands on my body didn’t make me feel exposed. I may have made her feel beautiful, but she made me feel something else, something precious. Dancing with Alisha made me feel handsome, like a boy out with a beautiful girl.
I realise I haven’t said anything about Ed being trans and apart from YAY absolutely great trans representation by a trans author I don’t think I want to. It’s just… Ed is trans and that’s part of him but that’s really not the focus of the book and I feel it really doesn’t have to. It’s bloody perfect.
Next to the relationship another important element of the book centres around the murders that are happening in La Vista. While it was only more or less mentioned in the fist two books, Ed as a journalist tries to help get the investigation along. I won’t get into this very much but what I find to be extraordinarily well done is how much the book here feels as a comprehensive whole and everything plays together.
We meet some of the old characters again and some new ones. We read about interesting and thoughtful conversations, and I have my first ideas who the murderer might be, which is actually quite scary:
I wanted it to be someone nobody knew. I wanted it to be someone straight, someone who targeted the community from the outside, someone I could feel free to hate.
I can’t believe we need to wait till book 5 to get to know who it really is…
The Queer and the Restless is book 3 in the series and while I think it does work as a standalone, you should definitely read the rest of the series as well. Check out our reviews of Gays of Our Lives and The Butch and the Beautiful if you haven’t already.
Don’t miss this great series and definitely do not miss this instalment. It’s fabulous.
Kris Ripper lives in the great state of California and hails from the San Francisco Bay Area. Kris shares a converted garage with a toddler, can do two pull-ups in a row, and can write backwards. (No, really.) Kris is genderqueer and prefers the z-based pronouns because they’re freaking sweet. Ze has been writing fiction since ze learned how to write, and boring zir stuffed animals with stories long before that.
You can purchase The Queer and the Restless from:
Amazon (Not yet available)
I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.