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REVIEW: In Full Uniform – Bo Starsky

In Full Uniform - Bo Starsky

Genre: Contemporary, Uniforms (Collection)

LGBTQ+ Category: Gay

Reviewer: Tony

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About The Book

Four tales about falling for a man in uniform.

Huan is a hopeless romantic living in Seattle. Arthur’s a soldier shipping out to Iraq. Something sparks when their paths cross…

Being a British police officer is all Eli’s ever known, then he meets Gloria Hole, a drag queen who’s an expert at turning heads and causing trouble…

There’s not much night life in Ezra’s quaint hometown, there is the prim bookstore owner Vincent, who Ezra’s determined to woo with book titles…

It’s 1976 and Dov indulges once a year behind a gay bar across town. Then Detective Charles Blasted Coleman catches him in the act…

For four men and the men in uniform with whom they fall in love, what may seem the end of everything, turns out to be only the beginning.

The Review

In Full Uniform is a collection of four stories concerning how uniformed protagonists get their men. In some cases, they did not know that’s what they were going to be doing when they got out of bed that day.

The uniforms in the title are worn by a soldier, a policeman or three, a book store manager and a drag queen. If you are worried about it being concerned with uniform fetishes, don’t be. It does feature somewhat in two of the stories, but it’s not what the stories are really about – just a little kink in the relationship of the new lovers in question. One they will be taking advantage of, for sure, but not here.

The stories cover a range of different relationships and do not shy from the highs and lows of their journeys. Yeah, their journey. I know, I take full responsibility for my words. Their journeys are very different, but they are dealt with sensitively and intelligently. I really enjoyed them.

Just one warning. You may not want to be reading them while parked up in a Tesco car park, as you could get some strange looks when you burst out laughing one second and have to wipe a tear away the next.

The stories:

‘Letter from Fallujah’ concerns Huan and Arthur. Huan is not the loser he thinks he is when he meets the man of his dreams on a bus.

Arthur is on his way back to Iraq for another tour of duty. When a strange man sits next to him on the bus and offers to get him a coffee, he has no idea what he has let himself in for, but then neither does Huan. A really heart warming tale that unfolds with enough heartache to cover all bases.

‘Digging Holes and Ditches’ concerns two policemen. Dov is about to indulge in his annual relaxation of the leash on his sexual beast and get some when he and his ‘date’ get interrupted by Chuck, one of Dov’s colleagues. Yeah, another cop. What follows is something Dov has no prior experience of. A tale about how making do is never good enough.

‘How to Grab His Attention: A Guide to Getting Your Man’ is a pure joy. Ezra has lost his job after accidentally hitting on his boss. I don’t know how you do that accidentally, but then Ezra just can’t help himself from helping himself to what he likes.

Vincent, on the other hand, likes to think that he’s in complete control of his life. This story follows Ezra’s clumsy attempts at wooing Vincent, a man so far out of his league that even Ezra thinks he is doomed to failure. Ezra is helped along by his interfering mother, to his despair. There are some excruciating moments for Ezra where his mother is concerned. Excruciatingly funny, that is.

‘Copper Top’ concerns a policeman, Eli, and a drag queen, Gloria. Both of the characters have issues that throw them together and maybe tear them apart at the same time. I loved it when they began to work things out. I did have a minor issue about half way through the story, when Eli suddenly becomes Officer Angry, as it were. Up to that point he had behaved like a good guy, one that Gloria was attracted to. There is probably a longer story waiting to bust out of this one’s short story restraints. If that ever happens I’ll be signing up to read it!

The Reviewer

Tony is an Englishman living amongst the Welsh and the Other Folk in the mountains of Wales. He lives with his partner of thirty-six years, four dogs, two ponies, various birds, and his bees. He is a retired lecturer and a writer of no renown but that doesn’t stop him enjoying what he used to think of as ‘sensible’ fantasy and sf. He’s surprised to find that if the story is well written and has likeable characters undergoing the trails of life, i.e. falling in love, falling out of love, having a bit of nooky (but not all the time), fending off foes, aliens and monsters, etc., he’ll be happy as a sandperson who has just offloaded a wagon of sand at the going market price. As long as there’s a story, he’s in. He aims to write fair and honest reviews. If he finds he is not the target reader he’ll move on. 

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