I decided to read this after attending the panel at the BPL way back in September and I’m just now getting around to writing this post at the end of November. It’s just been one of those stretches where I didn’t have the time (or desire) to blog. The break was a needed refresher and now I’m making my way through a backlog of posts.
Hot Head tells the story of Griff, a buff red-headed (probably Irish) NYC fireman, and his best friend Dante, a smaller but still buff Italian American fireman. They grew up together, survived 9/11 and are now facing the aftermath of everything that happened. Long story short Griff has realized he is gay and has started to fall for Dante.
Over the course of the novel there are various plot devices which move the story forward. From drunken confessions to a porn site that thrives on blue-collar working “straight” men stripping off and getting off on camera, needless to say things get pretty hot and steamy throughout the novel. There’s even a life-saving swoon-worthy moment with longing gazes on the unconscious rescued in the hospital.
The novel reads super quick and one of the things I truly appreciated was the lack of sex for a large portion of the novel. Don’t get me wrong there are plenty of masturbatory fantasies spread throughout, but actual sex scenes are few and far between and it’s that wait that makes this novel such a great one.
I will also say that I was very impressed with Suede’s writing. I honestly found him to be a bit crude in person at the BPL panel, but I guess with writing this strong and stories this good you can say and do what you want.
Recommendation: Yes please. Seriously, this was a hot and steamy fast-paced read that definitely engaged all of my emotions and senses. I wish I would’ve written this closer to reading the book as this is definitely a summer beach throwaway read that doesn’t necessarily stay with you, but makes a huge impact as you read it.
Opening Line: “Griff saw the whole fight before the first punch landed.”
Closing Line: “‘Well,’ Griff whispered. ‘Maybe I can shock you….'” (Whited out to avoid spoilers, highlight to read)
Additional Quotes from Hot Head
“Some monster had punched a hole in New York, and hope was draining out of it into the river.” (Loc. 656)
“Griff had a sudden uncanny feeling that he was a game piece on an enormous, ridiculous board game with house fires and bar fights and cum-shots. He tried to think back over the steps that had led them to this room on this day doing these things for this website.” (Loc. 5,444)