Friday, November 04, 2022

What is Lev AC Rosen reading?

Featured at Writers Read: Lev AC Rosen, author of Lavender House: A Novel.

His entry begins:
I've been reading Joseph Hansen's David Brandstetter series, which was just re-issued. They begin with Fadeout, and follow an insurance investigator in California in the 70s (technically I think the first one was published in 69?). The series lasted a while, but is generally forgotten, possibly because Brandstetter, the detective character, is gay. Not much is made of it, though obviously the homophobia of the time is sometimes part of the story. He often encounters other queer folks on his cases, too. But the excitement of reading a queer mystery written over fifty years ago aside, the books are also just gorgeous. Beautifully written. There's still one...[read on]
About Lavender House, from the publisher:
A delicious story from a new voice in suspense, Lev AC Rosen's Lavender House is Knives Out with a queer historical twist.

Lavender House, 1952: the family seat of recently deceased matriarch Irene Lamontaine, head of the famous Lamontaine soap empire. Irene’s recipes for her signature scents are a well guarded secret—but it's not the only one behind these gates. This estate offers a unique freedom, where none of the residents or staff hide who they are. But to keep their secret, they've needed to keep others out. And now they're worried they're keeping a murderer in.

Irene’s widow hires Evander Mills to uncover the truth behind her mysterious death. Andy, recently fired from the San Francisco police after being caught in a raid on a gay bar, is happy to accept—his calendar is wide open. And his secret is the kind of secret the Lamontaines understand.

Andy had never imagined a world like Lavender House. He's seduced by the safety and freedom found behind its gates, where a queer family lives honestly and openly. But that honesty doesn't extend to everything, and he quickly finds himself a pawn in a family game of old money, subterfuge, and jealousy—and Irene’s death is only the beginning.

When your existence is a crime, everything you do is criminal, and the gates of Lavender House can’t lock out the real world forever. Running a soap empire can be a dirty business.
Visit Lev AC Rosen's website.

The Page 69 Test: Camp.

Writers Read: Lev AC Rosen.

--Marshal Zeringue