In a truly distinctive genre of LGBT literature — dubbed here “the stroke love story” — the blow-by-blow steamy sex doesn’t begin until page 115. And by then it will blow the whitewalls off your tires. That’s the welcome character of the new novel, “Nothing Can Tear Us Apart” by gay African-American writer Wyatt O’Brian Evans, a native Washingtonian.
Spoiler alert! This is not a Harlequin romance of the sort where the lovers court and spark and sulk and simmer but then the action suddenly ceases when the tight, straining bodice is finally torn away from the heaving bosom, or the sleek six-pack abs.
Read this novel, yes by all means, for its steamy sex scenes, for they truly sizzle with sexy-cool and super-hot, get-it-on, hard-core action. But first, also get to know the two lead gay characters: fabulously wealthy black entertainment mogul and stand-up comic Wes Kelly, and his lover Antonio Rios, also his fabulously muscled bodyguard. Get to know them first, in other words, as real, three-dimensional, “manly men of color,” real men, facing challenges in the relationship as they are caught up in the undertow and cross-currents of a powerful romance, their lives etched sharply in an intensely erotic love story, not as mere erogenous images.
Get to know them also on Saturday, March 20 when the author — now a resident of Silver Spring, Md. — brings them fully alive as they were formed in his imagination when he gives a book reading at the DC Center.
In an interview exclusive to DC Agenda, Evans acknowledged how much his protagonist Wes embodies his own identity but also that he is no carbon-copy cutout. “Some of me is Wes, some of me is not, but the core of me is,” declared Evans.
“Wes is like me in that he has core values,” pointedly including a belief in God and Jesus Christ, true also for Evans, who puts it bluntly about his own life: “I wouldn’t be here today without a strong belief in God and Jesus Christ,” adding, “I’m very spiritual — I pray several times a day.”
“Wes is like me, very loyal, sometimes to a fault, and he is affectionate — manly affectionate — and not afraid to show it,” said Evans. “I want to blow away all the stereotypes in this novel.” But the author believes he is unlike his creation in key respects, for while “Wes is no fool for love, he can be just a tad needy, and I’m not like that, oh no no no!”
Wyatt points out that Wes “enjoys power.”
“I also enjoy power,” Evans concedes, “but I don’t enjoy it probably as much as Wes does, in other words I’m a softer version of him.” In person, however, “soft” is the very last adjective that would come to mind, for Evans is powerfully gym-built with a cocoa complexion and gleaming pate and laughing eyes exuding sensuality and command, from years spent on the stand-up comic circuit — a career he plans to reactivate later this year.
In addition, Evans has had a long career as a journalist. He holds two bachelor’s degrees from George Washington University — in journalism and in political science — after graduating from D.C.’s McKinley Tech High School. His career in journalism really began in boyhood when, he recalls, “I created my own comic book company, and I would write dialogue, draw and color the panels. … I love to write, and journalism has always fascinated me.”
The novel is a fascinating blend of mature love story, dogged by the real-life challenges of worry over being cheated on, and also questions of vying for who’s on top (literally), as well as a seductively sexy and slam-bam account of nights and days spent in the proverbial sack, when all inhibitions are cast aside in a tangle of naked abandon. So rest assured that the novel is replete with happy endings, even if the ultimate happy ending remains in doubt until the very end — will they wed or will the green-eyed devil drive them apart?
Wes is stalked by a crime-lord eager to exploit suspicions Wes and ‘Tonio have about their mutual fidelity. For issues of monogamy and also partner abuse are just as central to this tale as are real-life credible tensions within the LGBT community, as seen in the relationship between Wes and ‘Tonio in veiled disquiet and even sometimes outright hostility between Latino brown and African-American black in what Evans calls “racism” pure and simple.
The ultimate purpose of the ideology of white supremacy, Evans believes, is “to prevent white genetic annihilation on Earth, a planet on which the overwhelming majority of people are classified as non-white by white-skinned people.”
Evans’ book reading takes place 6-9 p.m., Saturday, March 20 at the DC Center, 1810 14th St., N.W., and copies of ‘Nothing Can Drive Us Apart’ can be purchased then at a $20 special discount price. Copies can also be obtained for $24.95 at wyattobrianevans.net or directly from www.lulu.com/content/833337.