Reviews by Jessewave

The Male/Male adult themed romance book archive

M/M only

01bw_167As most of you know, this site is M/M only, which means that we review books with gay male protagonists who end up together. However, I continue to get requests from authors to review books which have some hetero content. The authors’ rationale is that if the protags  ultimately get their HEAs there should not be a problem accepting their books for review. In view of this I would like to clarify my M/M policy.

If a book has one or both of the protagonists in sexual situations with women, that to me is not male/male. If one of the guys has a girlfriend on the side and they are having sex in the book, again that is not male/male in my definition, even if ultimately the guys have a HEA. Sometimes one of the protags in the books is bisexual, transgender or straight (as in Gay for You books) but he has switched his sexual orientation –  as long as there is no on-page  sex between him and a female or partner in the book it can be submitted as M/M for review on this site. In the past this site has been asked to review stories where a relationship is developing between the two main male characters, but there are secondary pairings with a female or transgendered person as part of the couple reaching their HEA. To me that is not a true M/M book. Others may disagree

I have approached a few M/M publishers and asked them whether they could indicate on their websites or in the book blurbs if there is M/F content in their M/M stories and I hope that’s possible in the future so that we’re not blindsided; it should be a pretty simple matter to do this in the blurbs. A few publishers already do e.g. Amber Allure gives the best information re the content of their M/M books so that the reader always knows ahead of time what to expect before they buy. Why is this important? On some occasions reviewers have returned books to me as DNF because there were women in sexual situations with the gay men in the M/M books and there was no ‘heads up’. I still get requests to review books that have M/M/F or M/F/M content, and neither the blurbs nor the publishers provide this information beforehand. If I know about the content ahead of time I would not request some books for review.

98% of review sites review a full range of romance books and these sites would be happy, I’m sure, to review any adult themed romance books that fit within their criteria. This site does not review F/F, menage (except for M/M/M), transgender, hetero,  bisexual, M/M/F or M/F/M books.

Why do I feel that this post is necessary? One author has accused this site of being biased because she felt that she didn’t get a fair review of her M/M/F book (which was classified as M/M by the publisher). I had to point out that regardless of our personal feelings, all of the reviewers here are fair in their reviews and ratings, whether or not we have a favourite sub genre such as paranormal, mystery, sports, etc.  If we don’t want to review a book it would simply be DNF.

At least 95% of the readers who access this site are what I call “pure” M/M readers, which means that they prefer their books not to have females in romantic or sexual situations with the protagonists i.e. no  M/M/F and M/F/M books. I consider myself a ‘pure’ M/M reader and when I’m reading M/M books for pleasure or review and I’m surprised by M/F content, the book is usually a DNF. I read all kinds of general fiction and non fiction and have no problem with women in these books – I am female and I like to read about other women, I just prefer not to have them in sexual situations in my M/M books. Recently I did a post with Sean Kennedy and Jenre about the lack of positive female characters in M/M books and we all decried the current trend of some authors who portray women in M/M books as manipulative bitches, whores, etc. I’m not against women in M/M books, I just prefer not to have them in sexual situations with the protagonists.

I hope that this clarifies my M/M policy. There is no intention on my part to in any way denigrate any sub genre – this is simply a preference for a certain type of book to review on this site, and I hope this post will save authors from submitting their books to the wrong site. I do, however, welcome your M/M books for review. Thanks guys!

Author

I live in Canada and I love big dogs, music, movies, reading and sports - especially baseball

57 comments

  • I agree, both as a reader and an author, Wave. There’s nothing quite as off-putting as settling down with a new M/M book I’ve been looking forward to reading and finding explicit M/F or M/M/F, etc. content.

    * *

    I DO read het and menage, because I read all sorts of things, but I prefer not to be blindsided with M/F in whatever combination.

    * *

    To be fair, I’ve been known to write things like “She stuck her hand down my pants and grabbed me… and I’ve never run so fast in my life. I was just lucky she didn’t have a better grip or I’d be experiencing a huge change-of-life right now.” But in the event of actual M/F relationships in my M/M, the door closes before anyone gets naked, as it should. :)

    * *

    M/M should be just that. The readers of this site know what to expect when they come here looking for reviews so one would think authors and publishers would also be aware.

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    Keep doing what you and yours are doing. It’s a great site and frankly, those who don’t choose to READ THE DAMNED BANNER have no room to bitch at not getting what they want.

    • TC
      Thank you so much for endorsing what I’m trying to do on this site. I, too, read other sub genres and I follow series that are M/F or M/M/F, but for review on the site I must stick to M/M.

      **
      I thought that was clear on the banner but apparently not, or maybe some authors think that it doesn’t apply to their books. IDK. This has been a constant struggle and was on the old blog as well. Some authors get downright ugly when I tell them why their books can’t be reviewed here.:( However, I’m hoping that gradually authors will understand what I mean when I say M/M only, and also appreciate the views of the M/M readers who come by here to check out the reviews..

      **

      As I said before, as long as there’s no on page sex with women in the M/M books I have no problem with a kiss or something like that, as long as there’s a purpose to it to advance the plot.

      **

      I’m an M/M purist but I do understand that historical books have major challenges because of the times and the severity of the punishment if caught, so most men in those days had marriages in name only which could involve a kiss or two in public to save face.

      *

      As an author I appreciate your support TC.

  • Just came upon this one I agree with you wave,, I don’t know why it should be a big deal… after all its your blog, even if you did have someone review the M/M/F or whatever combination .. I would not read them, :) sorry haven;t been on more trying to get through graduate school… I truly enjoy your blog as is! 😀

    • Hi Duhaunt
      Thanks for commenting and welcome back. :)I understand about the pressures of graduate school so just drop by when you can.

      It seems that some authors do have a problem with this policy because they insist on including M/F scenes in their M/M books and then get pissed at me when I tell them we won’t review their books. They don’t care about our concerns – I’m sure if they wrote het romances they wouldn’t include M/M scenes because they have more respect for het readers. :(

  • So much transphobia coming from the very people who claim to be our allies… It’s heart-breaking :sad:

      • You haven’t removed or amended it, so I suppose you still stand by it?

        What the majority sees as a simple clarification in policy can be experienced by the ostracized minority as painful – even if accidental – discrimination. As a Black person, I imagine you must be only too familiar with this phenomenon?

          • Would you say the same to a person of color hurt by racism? Or a gay person hurt by homophobia? There’s transphobia in this post here, what is wrong with challenging it?

            • As Ingrid said, the review policy on this site has been in effect for a number of years. As I have stated before, I have no plans to change it. If/when I do I will write another post.

              There are thousands of review sites that review the full range of adult books – this doesn’t happen to be one of them. BTW this is not the only site that has a policy of only reviewing M/M books, mine just happens to be explicit.

              Please don’t try to tell me about discrimination.

              If you would like to have books reviewed that are outside the policy on this site I’m sure there are other sites that would be happy to accommodate you.

              • It appears there has been a misunderstanding. I don’t have any beef with your policy in itself, but only with its wording. I don’t see anything wrong with wanting to review only gay romance between cis men. What I have a problem with is using transphobic wording to express this policy.

                I also make no demands that you expand what you review. Trans characters are not your thing and that’s fine with me. But using transphobic words and arguments to justify your preference is not fine.

                Hopefully this makes my position a bit clearer?

                  • You refuse to discuss an issue where you discriminated against a minority.

                    You link to a post where you don’t allow comments.

                    Do you realise how close-minded you are acting here? Closing down a conversation when you are the oppressing, privileged one in power, is not something I would have expected from someone running such a site. This is more than just a little disappointing.

                    • Did you read the other posts that are linked? Apparently you haven’t or you would not have said that I refused to discuss this matter. I discussed it at length at that time and I am not going over old ground that has already been discussed ad nauseum. If you read the other posts you will find my comments.

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