BOOK REVIEW: Dreamer by Steven Harper

I’ve often heard the lament that there are no good gay sci fi books, that gay books are all coming out stories, frothy urban romances, or “serious” I-hate-myself-and-I’m-in-love-with-a-hustler stories. And while it’s true that I’m hearing there are some worthy self-published gay sci fi titles, finding them means sorting through the mounds of dreck.

dreamer1.jpgSo in keeping with the suggestion that we not limit our reviews to currently published books, I offer this little gay sci fi gem from 2001: Dreamer by Steven Harper, the first in a four-book series (The Silent Empire) about a world where a small percentage of humanity has been able to link together telepathically in something called The Dream. But strange storms have started appearing in The Dream, destroying not just this alternate wonderland, and all the benefits it brings humanity, but also all the people connected to it. It’s a clever premise wonderfully executed.

But what really make these books extraordinary is the fact that the main character is a gay man. The series goes into great detail about his childhood, his feelings of being “different,” and his stormy relationship with another man. It’s integral to the story, not mere window-dressing, like Stephen King’s recent book-about-a-gay-man, Cellular. And it’s all the more interesting that the books are written (under a pen name) by a straight man.

Highly, highly recommended. Check em out.