Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, Autumn 1916. Crale, the ambitious Senator’s son, Wynter, the talented artist and Marrok, the football prodigy. Their paths cross in strange and unexpected ways in Poisoned Ivy, the first book in the Vintage series published by Bristlecone Pine Press. Inspired by antique pictures and photographs, Vintage books celebrate historic sameYale University, New Haven, Connecticut, Autumn 1916. Crale, the ambitious Senator’s son, Wynter, the talented artist and Marrok, the football prodigy. Their paths cross in strange and unexpected ways in Poisoned Ivy, the first book in the Vintage series published by Bristlecone Pine Press. Inspired by antique pictures and photographs, Vintage books celebrate historic same-sex male love stories told in unique and creative ways. Poisoned Ivy by Scot D. Ryersson is full of haunting shadows and mysterious goings-on, set against the background of the hallowed halls of the Ivy League, its arcane secret societies, the college gridiron, and the artist’s canvas. Green-eyed jealousy, blue-eyed ice, and amber-eyed fire all combine to create a delicious and mischievous tale that will leave you wanting more....
|Title||:||Poisoned Ivy (Vintage #1)|
|Number of Pages||:||100 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Poisoned Ivy (Vintage #1) Reviews
The Vintage line from Bristlecone Press plays off of antique pictures and incorporates them into the stories. Here the cover picture is used wonderfully in the story and exists are more than a mere prop or concept. It becomes the essence of the novella in the most engrossing way. The start is a little slow, though I didn’t mind it, but the only real drawback is the deliberating confusing and vague ending. There’s enough information if you read between the lines to guess at a happy ending, but I’m not sure why the author chose to be so obscure with the final resolution. It’s not a bad ending necessarily and the strength of the story carries this enough to leave you with a positive feeling.Set in the early 1900’s at Yale, artist Wynter is the fulcrum in an elusive love triangle. There is spoiled Senator’s son Crale who wants Wynter, although the later is unaware of Crale’s feelings other than friendship. Then there is new football player Marrok, a man constantly described as hulking and wolf like who also wants Wynter. Wynter plays the clueless artist amidst these powerful opposing forces until he awakens to his desire and chooses. The ending is deliberately left vague, although if you read closely you can guess the future.The novella is very well crafted and written with an engrossing manner that sucks you in almost immediately. Descriptions are lush and vivid without the need for weighty prose and lengthy diatribes. The quick pace and engaging manner is mostly shown through Crale’s point of view and thus the reader is treated to his immense flaws, deep obsession, and careful treatment of Wynter. Both Wynter and Marrok are less well known and come across as enigmas. Wynter especially is given an innocent ingénue personality, not realizing these two strong men are subtly and almost silently fighting for his attention and affection.The novella brings in several different aspects which make trying to pigeonhole this story difficult. It’s suspenseful and dramatic but never over the top and there is a smattering of mystery but not enough to categorize. There are some clear paranormal aspects but these are left questionable as the story never clarifies the strange forces at work. This doesn’t work against the story though and instead I found it refreshing to have some suspense, tension, and romance mixed with obsession, secrecy, dark rites, and paranormal energies. None of these overwhelms the story but glides through the narrative with an inherent ease.If there is anything that may bother readers it’s the ending. The resolution is left dangling with only the barest hint of information. You have to read closely to understand the happy ending that is just hinted at but what happened, how, why, and a multitude of other questions still remain. This is obviously done intentionally and meant to let the reader’s own imagination fill in any missing areas. On the one hand, this is again refreshing but on the other hand I did find this rather annoying. I would have preferred a less vague ending.The setting of the early 1900s university campus is decent but frequently I forgot this story is historical. It feels very contemporary in all but the dialogue and prose choice. The dialogue has the formal diction of the time and the sentence structure that helps define the time period but the action and descriptions feel very modern. I actually wondered if this was a contemporary piece for a while when I started. Regardless, the story is interesting, different, and compelling. The vintage picture is incorporated wonderfully and essential to the story without being a gimmick or forgettable. Instead it came alive through the actions, thoughts, and emotions of the men shown. If you’re looking for something unique and well written, give this a try. I think it’s definitely worth the time and few dollars even considering the iffy ending.
I think Poisoned Ivy was inspired by the very own life of J.C. Leyendecker, the artist whose illustration is on the cover; at the beginning of the XX century he was a very famous advertising illustrator and most of the time he used the same model, Charles Bean, who was also his in-living model and partner. Charles’s relationship with Leyendecker was of love (probably) and possession (for sure), arriving to almost captivity at the end of Leyendecker’s life, when Charles was his only connection with the outside world. Charles didn’t survive Leyendecker for many years, almost proving that, where one was the other soon followed, Charles the always present shadow of the artist. At the beginning of this novella, it’s easy to recognize in Wynter, the young and almost detached from reality artist, Leyendecker, and in Crale, handsome like and Adonis, friendly and loved by everyone in the college campus of Yale, the notorious Charles. But Charles/Crale is not the man in the Football Hero image in the cover; the man in that image is rougher, stronger, earthier. Where Crale has the body of a renaissance man, a Greek warrior maybe, Marrok, the man in that image, is more a Roman gladiator, where Crale represents the philosophy and study, Marrok is more sweat and game fields. Both of them, in any case, are the epitome of something that was dying: after the I World War and before the II World War, the hero was dying, and the massification was starting. And being a different type of hero, both of them could have been good for Wynter. Crale loves Wynter, that is clear, but his love is possession; he is from a wasp family, old and wealthy, and he was taught that, only for his name, everything was due to him. He “chooses” Wynter, and then he wants Wynter, no matter if Wynter is not aware of that, or if maybe he doesn’t want it. Crale knows better, he knows what is good for his friend. If Marrok didn’t enter the picture, Crale would have probably obtained his goal, and probably Wynter would have not minded that life. But with Marrok everything is different; in a way Crale doesn’t want to awake Wynter to reality, he doesn’t want for him to be aware of the “world”: if Wynter remains detached, Crale has power on him, he will be his only link to reality. Marrok instead is like a shake, he turns upside down Wynter’s world, changing its course irremediably. Problem is that the author had to do a choice, and probably he placed passionate love before the esthetical one. I think that he was a bit too harsh with Crale, some of the scenes were so tender (when he “kisses” Wynter’s cup to savour the essence of his beloved), that I was really cheering half for him and half for Marrok, I was not really able to choose.http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003T0G5FM/?...
I bought this book because the idea of reading a story written around a vintage image appealed to me.The beginning was a little slow, probably because I had a problem with the odd names. Not too far in, though, I could tell it was going to get very good. It actually got "gripping." I had to finish it in one sitting, had to find out, not only what was going to happen, but what was really going on.The M/M romance isn't overdone, but instead adds an air of sensual mystery to the story.Poisoned Ivy is well-written, with a hold-your-breath ending. There is an epilogue that isn't labeled as such, but it gives you a chance to say, okay, now I know what happened, but then again, maybe I don't.
I liked this story for its setting, language and variety of characters. That same variety stopped me from identifying with any one, though, which reduced my enjoyment on an emotional level. The plot idea was certainly intriguing, but the ending was highly confusing for me and left me totally up in the air as to what had actually happened. So much so that I'm still shaking my head, trying to figure out whether I even liked that ending or not. Right now, I'm veering toward not.
I agree with what others have said; this book seemed a tad slow to start. I liked the pacing and classic feel to it, though, and after the first few pages I was hooked. I won't spoil the ending, but it certainly surprised me after being on the edge of my seat for a while. Wonderful read.
3.5 starsThe language in this story reminded me of a Jane Austen novel. It was hard to move past that and get into the story but I did. Through the entire reading, there was an underlying hint that there was more to what was going on than the surface would offer and I found myself guessing and coming up with scenarios of how it would play out. The ending was not anything I had imagined, not that it had to be, but it was just more of a 'huh' kind of reaction. The very end skips to present day to allow us to see how things progressed, and felt a confusion over the information that was given there. I can honestly say that I have no idea what happened to the main character.
This so-so historical paranormal m/m romance about students at Yale in the early part of the 20th century just never really came together for me. Between the language (aping Jane Austen? or trying for a more literary feel?) and the WTF ending, I never warmed to the story.