Does Seattle give a damn about his past reputation?After being caught in a backseat tryst with the mayor's son, twenty-one-year-old Shane Fontaine is exiled from his small hometown. Now, alone in the city, he seeks solace in punk show mosh pits and bathhouse saunas.But the music scene and gay community in 1982 recession-era Seattle aren’t always safe. Rescued from a brutalDoes Seattle give a damn about his past reputation?After being caught in a backseat tryst with the mayor's son, twenty-one-year-old Shane Fontaine is exiled from his small hometown. Now, alone in the city, he seeks solace in punk show mosh pits and bathhouse saunas.But the music scene and gay community in 1982 recession-era Seattle aren’t always safe. Rescued from a brutal beating, Shane forms a friendship with a Russian engineering student that launches a confounding set of traumatic and ecstatic encounters.Shane’s quest for human connection sends him down dark, dangerous streets. To survive, he must become the man who chooses to persist, to do the right thing and stand up for others.This close-up portrait of pre-AIDS Seattle illuminates dark corners, where homeless kids cluster for safety near the revitalized Pike Place Market. Bad Reputation contrasts the deeply personal need for friendship with the universal dilemma: people aren’t always what they seem....
|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||284 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
bad reputation Reviews
AMAZON FREEBIE 8/12/17
3.5 starsSimilar to her previous book, This Charming Man, this was a gritty look at Seattle. This time it's the early 80s and Shane and Bash and their friends spend their nights at bars listening to punk bands and slam dancing their anger out. I loved this different setting and I loved a lot of the characters, especially Bash, Lisa and Mo. Shane, though, made a few too many stupid decisions and, honestly, I began to question why Bash would have fallen in love with him. There were also some things I don't like to see in my romances (view spoiler)[Shane is with several other guys throughout the story, although technically it wouldn't have been cheating since they weren't together yet (hide spoiler)] and there were a number of frustrating points where he should have just been honest with Bash. Overall, great time period and gritty setting but with aspects that could be frustrating to those that are reading solely for the romance.
Ajax Bell has written another gritty-yet-hopeful, evocative story of coming of age and finding love in the Pacific Northwest.Bell has a mastery of setting--not just place, but time as well. Though I've never been to Seattle, I feel like I know the city through her affectionate and evocative descriptions. While some of the settings of this story are bleak and dangerous, their juxtaposition with comfort and safety perfectly capture the uncertainty and fear of leaving home and finding your way for the first time.Shane's story is not always a pretty one, but it's poignant and truthful, and the HEA is sweet as can be. Recommended!
5 StarsAfter being caught in a compromising position with the Mayor’s son and arrested, Shane is forced to flee his small hometown of Port Angeles, lest he face retribution from the Mayor and members of the police force. He heads to Seattle where he finds a job trying to start over fresh. Shane spends his days working for the city on the pothole crew and his nights at small venues listening to Punk music and slam dancing or in the bathhouses for anonymous sex. This story is absolutely heartbreaking. I know reading so many books I say that a lot, but omg, my heart literally broke for Shane. I felt his loneliness and sadness. It weighed heavy throughout the story. I broke down sobbing at times for the injustice of it all. Shane has lost everyone he’s ever cared about. They have either passed away or have abandoned him or turned their backs on him for being gay. I just wanted to hug and protect him from it all. He tries so hard to start over, but trouble just seems to follow him. I not only loved Shane, but the story had some great secondary characters, some I’m left wondering the fate of, especially Jamie. I have a horrible feeling that for this time period and with Jamie’s actions, he sadly probably didn’t survive to see the 1990’s.While, the story has a romantic undertone, I’m not sure I’d really call it a romance per se, but I really loved the story and it’s written in one of my favorite eras, the 1980’s. I grew up in the eighties and while I was more of a new-waver rather than a punk rocker like Shane and Bash and their friends, I can definitely still relate to the backdrop of this story.I really enjoyed the story, but it was a bit slow in places and needed something to help move the storyline along. The last 25% had action, more romance and suspense and it really picked up steam at that point and eventually offered the lovely happy ending that Shane so desperately needed and deserved. I don’t want to say a whole lot more, because I don’t want to give away too many spoilers so I’ll just say, you just need to go out and one-click it and find out how great it was for yourself. You won’t regret it, I promise! Highly recommend!
Ajax completely nailed the angst of the west coast queer scene in the early 80's... and of the post-punk music scene, which captured the fallout (no pun intended) of the tail end of the cold war combined with the effects of the Reagan-Thatcher era and their trickle-down theory. And, in Shane, Bell finds someone with so little recourse and so little control over the direction he can take in his life, he turns to mosh pits let out excess energy and to bathhouses to let in some comfort.Having read the trilogy (oh, but please let there be more), I think this is my favorite. It is dark but... well, there's Bash, who has got to be one of the kindest men ever created. Bash, who doesn't try to change Shane, but does provide an out for the life he can't seem to escape. Bash, who truly accepts people unconditionally. Bash, who patiently shows up and waits for Shane to recognize what is right in front of him.My goodness, it's healing.I also have a soft spot for Jamie, who isn't the best friend in this particular novel. Nor is he portrayed in the best light in Just Like Honey (which is amazing...please read it), but for someone who skirts what is so inappropriate, he's intermittently fierce and willing to push a friend to be a better version of themselves. In my mind, he's the most interesting side character in the series. Complex. Unabashed (ha...no pun intended). Very definitely not on the right side of history. But also...compelling. Like I really wonder what would happen if he got his own Bash (who wouldn't be Bash but someone else).It is grim but heartfelt and absolutely wonderful.
I love going back in time with this series. This took me back even further than the first one, to the early 80s when I was just starting my rebellious youth. Although, I didn't have the same experiences as Shane does, it was again...nostalgic to read about pay phones, music...life in the old days. When posers were calling other people posers. *the word posers* *memories*Shane has awful luck. He loses so much before he even gets to Seattle. He starts off with giant hurdles to overcome. Lonely. Naive. But also eager to face life. He has good insight too, thanks to his grandparents. But dammit, he keeps making one stupid decision after another. Somewhere in there, he meets Bash. Bash is very much like a big gentle Ben. So this story is an account of Shane's transition into his adult life in Seattle, overcoming his mistakes and bad decisions, and falling in love with Ben..er...I mean Bash.I love how there wasn't a lot of angst but yet there was a lot of heart breaking things that happen. Is that weird? I mean..Bell was able to convey all the hard stuff in the story without getting too after school special about it. I think the ticket was that it felt authentic. And anytime I love a story, I find that it almost always feels that way...real. The setting was wonderful. I've never been to Seattle. But I could picture it perfectly in my head in the story. Not just any Seattle either...80s Seattle. The Emerald City. Bell makes an author's note at the end of the story, describing Ajax's efforts to keep things as real and authentic to 80s Seattle, as possible. Also, there's a note about homeless LGBT+ youth..and yeah, that's my cause. So, only affirms my decision to follow this author more closely. Ajax might have become an auto buy for me. There's like only 4 authors on that list for me. Not that I'm anyone special. This was a good story. Had romance, grit, great scenery, interesting characters, even a little suspense. A little bit of everything. 5 stars from me.
https://justloveromance.wordpress.com...With its gritty portrayal of early 80’s Seattle, Bad Reputation almost reads like the West Coast’s answer to Santino Hassell’s Sutphin Boulevard – and that’s a very good thing indeed. Much like Hassell does with his descriptions of Queens, NY, Ajax Bell manages to evoke an early 80’s downtown Seattle so vividly that you almost feel like you’re walking the same dark streets, dive bars and bath houses that are so colourfully described.Bad Reputation is the story of Shane Fontaine, a young man who seems to have been born under a bad moon. Orphaned at an early age, Shane is raised by his grandparents in the kind of small town where you’re welcomed and protected, so long as you live your life by small town rules. Unfortunately, getting caught in the backseat of a car with the sheriff’s son only earns you a one way ticket out of town and with nowhere else to go and very little money to his name, Shane heads for the bright lights of Seattle. Lonely and seeking companionship, he spends his time checking out punk bands and hanging out in gay bars, ever aware of the dangers lurking the in the shadows. When a potential hook up turns into a back alley beating, Shane is saved by Bash, a Russian immigrant and university student who takes him back to his room to tend to his wounds and give him a place to stay for the night.From this tenuous thread, a friendship begins to form and Shane finds himself drawn to Bash, as much for his good looks as his gentle nature. But as Shane’s attraction to Bash grows, he finds himself torn between revealing his feelings and keeping them under wraps, hoping to maintain the friendship that has become so important to him. In the meantime, Shane continues to frequent the city’s bath houses, becoming acquainted with the handsome but slightly shady, Frankie, who easily offers Shane what he’s afraid of asking from Bash. But the more time Shane spends with Frankie, he realizes that Frankie’s easy demeanor is merely a lure and Shane is just a pawn in a dangerous game. Suddenly, his attraction to Bash and his continued relationship with Frankie are becoming irrevocably intertwined and Shane must eventually choose a course of action that will change his new friendships and his new life forever.I loved this book. Bash is amazing and I firmly believe that everyone needs a sweet, sweet Bash in their lives. His tenderness with Shane is so beautiful and pure, and I mean pure in the sense that Bash is one of the few people in Shane’s life who is not only looking out for Shane, but encourages him to look out for himself. When events conspire to force Shane to take action that could permanently affect his relationship with Bash, he does so with Bash’s best interests at heart. Something that might not have been possible without Bash’s unwavering friendship.What could have been terribly angsty, Ajax Bell manages to make heartfelt, honest and hopeful. Yes, the book takes us down some dark streets, but the friendship between Shane and Bash is the light at the end of the tunnel (yeah, I’m getting sappy – sue me). I enjoyed every moment of this story, from start to finish, and I look forward to reading more from this wonderful author. 4.5 stars**I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review**
Bad Reputation takes place in 1980s Seattle. And anyone who says the 80’s classifies as historical can bite me. THIS IS MY ERA! Mostly. I was a little kid thru teenager and have some great memories.Because I’m guilty of blurb neglect, I thought this would take place around the time of or after book one. But it steps back a few years to the story of a few characters who had a small role in This Charming Man, and that was a nifty surprise.This story dug right in and had me GLUED to my Kindle from the start, and I didn’t want it to end.The place and time are just as much characters as Shane, Bash, and all the side characters. Seriously. I love when authors pull this off because it truly makes the book a total escape.It’s a gritty landscape, not exactly the gleaming Emerald City usually portrayed in books or movies. It’s kind of rough and a little lonely as we tour bath houses, punker dive bars and cheap motels. It’s a bit of a walk on the wild side as well as memory lane…ahem, for those of us whose memories go back that far.Shane is…my God, the punches life throws this guy. At every turn he gets kicked in the nads. He gets tossed out of his hometown, what he has left of family is horrible to him, the people he meets along the way and trust disappoint -- or try to destroy him. I just…this guy couldn’t catch a break. And he wasn’t doing anything wrong while trying to fucking survive, other than maybe trusting too easily. I can’t condemn him for that though because, for the most part, that’s human nature. It’s just doubly worse that every time he’s kicked in the teeth too many people find out, twist it, and fault him — giving him this Bad Reputation he doesn’t deserve.Bash -- I loved the big teddy bear Russian like crazy. He’s kind, insightful, a bit BASHful (I know I’m a dork), and the perfect calm to the storm swirling around Shane. He’s so patient and forgiving when disappointment would send others running. He stays. He’s constant. Even when he has every right to be angry or confused he sticks.With Shane in such a low spot it’s too much to hope that Bash is interested in being more than friends, or more importantly, attracted to men at all. So a friendship transpires that comes to mean everything. They have their ups and downs and some miscommunications but it’s all so beautifully authentic. And then, then, then…when they come together my heart melted, reshaped, and swelled to bursting. They were so perfectly sweet together, both stronger, two halves to a whole.Through lots of twists and turns and with delightful side characters who add highlights and lowlights this story is full of hope, tenacity, and redemption.And surprise of surprises, we get some glimpses of John from book one in earlier days as a way to further tie these Queen City Boys together.If I was even a wee bit unsure before (which I don’t think I was), Ajax Bell is absolutely one of my favorites.Also posted on BackPorchReader.com.
3.5The story is set in Seattle during the eighties. Even though I don't know the place, in my opinion the author does a good job in depicting the gay and music scene of the time. I would define this exactly as a romance, although there is a romantic story in it. It was quite gritty. I liked the fact that Shane is Native American and the racism he experience is (sadly) just a natural part of the story, as it is the fact that he almost (view spoiler)[fell prey of Frankie. The plot to get Frankie framed with the help of the police was a bit unbelievable (hide spoiler)]. The secondary characters were also well done. I just would have preferred it if the story would have been a bit tighter.
You'll see my decision, but as I type this, I don't know how many stars to give this yet. It was damn hard for me to read, way harder than book 1. which wasn't all easy either. I walked away from this novel a few times, because Shane is not an easy character. He is trouble-prone and acts without thinking, he's a needy creature and... uuuuugh! But he's a good guy, dammit. Yes it's a romance, and as this precedes This Charming Man, I already knew he and Bash get together anyway, but the trip, man. It is not easy!Ready for trouble? This is your book.