Faraday, Jess. “The Affair of the Porcelain Dog”. Bold Strokes Books, 2011.
Back in Time
I love a good historical novel and if it has a gay theme so much the better. I must say for a first novel Jess Faraday really tells a story. We go back to London in 1889 and meet Ira Adler. He had, before becoming the private boy toy of noted crime lord Cain Goddard, been a hustler selling his body. Now he finds himself in a bit of a bind. Goddard is being blackmailed and Ira has to steal a statue from the person blackmailing him. We soon learn that the same statue could put Goddard behind bars for a very long time. England still had laws against sodomy. Now obviously that statue is of great importance since everyone wants it including Ira’s ex boyfriend, the bitter Dr. Timothy Lazarus. That statue just happens to be the porcelain dog of the title.
When Ira finally gets the statue, it is lost to a whore with quick fingers and now he must search of it on the very streets in East End where he grew up. As he looks for the statue, he learns about himself and also about how Goddard does business and he begins to wonder about what he thought he knew. Strange things begin to happen as Goddard pushes Ira to commit to him but there are problems as Ira learns things he was not meant to know. And that is all of the plot you will get from me.
Faraday certainly planned this novel out perfectly before sitting down to write and it is a book that keeps you riveted to the page. For every answer there is another question and twists and turns bring about the baring of secrets. The writing is top notch and the plot is excellent is as the character development. And there is a lesson here—one we have all heard many times and that is to not judge a book by its cover. We never know what is inside someone until we get to know him and many times he is not as he appears.