So Many Thanks and Love to Eric Arvin

A Few Words From a Couple of Unicorns About a True Gentleman

Eric Arvin

Lorix and I met on GR because of Eric's work and we both had reviews we wanted to post here. We decided that in light of recent events we would also post what Eric has meant to each of us and how he brought two Unicorns together in the most global of ways.  Thank you Eric, get well soon.

And, because helpful help is helpful - The Eric Arvin Support Fund

Ann's Thoughts:
Reading is fun. Meeting new people and talking to them about books is fun. Once in a while I’ll read a really special book, one that just hits me “right there”. I’ll go on GR, gush about it and hope someone else is inspired to read and love it too. I’ve done that with Eric Arvin’s stories. I swear, I know he and I are using the same alphabet, but when I read his words I can’t help but think he is using some kind of magical alphabet or something. I have always been in awe of how he can combine these same 26 letters to come up with what he does.

Then, shit went down and life got real. I’m sure everybody knows about the heartache and immeasurable wrongness that Eric Arvin is going through right now and it makes me think and it breaks my heart and it makes me want to hang on to everyone I love and not let go. One of those very dear people, is Lorix, my fellow unicorn. She and I met because of our shared love of Eric’s work. I can thank him directly for hooking me up with that sassy little bird from across the pond and for that I will be forever grateful. We fan-girled, we posted on reviews, we were the biggest dorks on the planet and when he responded to our ridiculousness he was the ultimate gentleman and it was so much fun.

The reality of what he is fighting right now and the outpouring of love and support for he and Tj made me really see how much bigger he is than just his words and watching the love story that he and Tj have let the rest of us be witness too is like seeing my favorite romance come to life. Eric’s stories are amazing, no question, but it’s everything else he offers to us, his fans, that make our community such a fun playground to be a part of. It’s the laughs, the great blog, the daily song shuffle and most importantly the love that makes this corner of the web the best place to be on the internet. Thank you Eric for letting me be a part of your world and connecting me to amazing people. I’m looking forward to reading more of your words for a long time to come.

And now, Ms. Lorix:
Like many fans of M/M fiction I have been saddened to hear of Eric Arvin’s recent hospitalisation. I am a huge fan of Eric’s work and it was, in fact, through comments on a review of the stunning Woke Up in a Strange Place that I first met one of my best on-line buddies, Ann, and then the rest of the unicorns. I know my world has been a better place since we all found each other. This is also the fabled book that led to his romance with Tj (though I didn’t know this at the time) so maybe it has super powers?

Eric’s writing is, quite simply, just beautiful. Each line and sentence is crafted thoughtfully, no words are wasted. I have found his work is often layered and very thought provoking, they are often the kind of books that stay with you for days afterwards tugging at the corner of your brain when you least expect them too.

Not only is Eric a fabulous writer he is more than generous with his time and interaction with his fans – at least this is the case I have found. Ann & I have fan-girled over many of his Goodreads statuses – even mocking up an Arvinette t-shirt – and he responds like the charming gentleman he is, not shunning us to the deepest, darkest reaches of the interweb.

I have followed his romance with the wonderful TJ Klune (another wonderful and generous M/M author with a wicked sense of humour), a real life love affair of the type I love to read about so much. They are special people and this should be the start of their happy ever after, the one every single one of us wants for them. My heart aches that they are having to deal with this when they should be in their new home arguing over how many strings of lights is too many.

I, like many, many, many fans wish them both all the best of luck as they face this hurdle. I’m glad they have each other and I know I wish I could help more, so I can’t begin to imagine what it is like for Eric, TJ and their families. Know you’re all in our thoughts, and Eric, get well soon.

A couple of Ann & Lorix's Fan Girl Moments:

Another Enchanted April - Originally Reviewed on GR in June 2013 by Ann

Another Enchanted April
Can the idyllic simplicity of a garden change a life forever?

It's a question three men on a vacation to the small seaside town of Beechwood will find the answer to when they stay at a B&B with an expansive and breathtakingly beautiful garden. A garden with an air of the supernatural. Jerry's there for love, Doug's there for sex, and Tony? Well, Tony is practically dragged along against his will.

A comedy of errors ensues as the three men cling stubbornly to their self-destructive ways; can a cook named Anna Magnani, a roller-skating drag queen, and the magic of the garden tame the tempest and prevent love's labors from being lost?

This book should be made into a movie. I know that has kind of been done, but I know I would like this version even better. The only problem is, you would miss out on the words. The way the author can put a few words together to convey so much is truly beautiful.

At some point, just about every avid reader has thought, "Hey, I have great ideas, I bet I could write too." Then you read something like this and you realize, "Um, yeah, no I can't, I'll stick to reading." The blurb describes it all, so I will just add how incredibly romantic and peaceful this book is. Not just a romance between characters, but a romance with a place and a point in time. The whole feel is very peaceful and it does feel like a vacation. Intermingled with that are incredibly amusing situations, great secondary characters and enough snark and honesty to keep it from being too sweet.

Highly recommended and a definite re-read for me.

Woke Up in a Strange Place - Originally Reviewed on GR in August 2013 by Lorix

Woke Up in a Strange Place
Joe wakes up in a barley field with no clothes, no memories, and no idea how he got there. Before he knows it, he's off on the last great journey of his life. With his soul guide Baker and a charge to have courage from a mysterious, alluring, and somehow familiar Stranger, Joe sets off through a fantastical changing landscape to confront his past. The quest is not without challenges. Joe's past is not always an easy thing to relive, but if he wants to find peace—and reunite with the Stranger he is so strongly drawn to—he must continue on until the end, no matter how tempted he is to stop along the way.

** spoiler alert ** This is possibly the most beautiful book I've ever read.

When I chose it I had no idea what it was about. I knew I wanted to read one of Eric Arvin's books (I hear of an author new to me and I want to check out their work) so I looked up what he'd written and was just drawn to the title - I love it. I didn't read past the first sentence of the blurb - sort of book roulette, I definitely dodged the bullet - so for some reason I had it in my head it was going to be similar to the film Memento. It wasn't.

Though this is an M/M romance story it is far from typical. It is about Joe's search through the next life for his soul mate, before he can find him though he has to confront the many memories and people who shaped his earth life.

Firstly I would say the prose is beautiful, the imagery Eric Arvin creates is amazing. He is a master at writing sentences that make the ever changing, ever shifting landscape of Joe's story feel real and tangible. The afterlife Eric Arvin composes is purely made up of each human's beliefs and experiences. 'Hell', when Joe comes across it, only exists because the people there believe it is where they should be, it is truly a product of their own beliefs, all it takes to escape is the realisation that they can, they don't have to be there.

Pg 80 "Well, human beings have always done one thing very well, and that is create their own hells and bask in their own misery. They complain about what they create for themselves; they relish the pain. What they don't do so well most of the time is find a way out of it."

How true is this?

Imagery continues in this vein, for moments of happiness, regret, the mists of those trapped between worlds while machines support their lives on earth but their souls want to be freed. It is perhaps more than a novel, a message we should understand. We are here, we are now, don't have regrets. Life isn't always going to be a bed of roses, sometimes things seem out of control; but we are the only ones who can make our lives what we want them to be. It may sound trite but life is for living and reading this novel makes you want to make the most of every second in the way that is right for you. Loudly, quietly, alone, with friends, a partner, family or a party.

So we follow Joe through his journey into the after life, are with him as he experiences all the earthly memories he has forgotten,both those that seemed significant to him and those that didn't. It brings forward the realisation that our actions and words can affect others, even when they seem insignificant to us. We are with Joe as he is eventually reunited with his soul mate. It truly is a love story.

I usually try not to contain spoilers when I write reviews - the blurb (if you read it) usually gives you enough of the story to tantalise - but with this book I found it almost impossible to write without spoilers. I am sure many others will and have reviewed this story far more succinctly than I, I know I'm gushing - I'm embarrassed even as I type - but honestly it is the most beautiful story. Beautiful. I will most definitely be re-reading it.


  1. Very nice post. I haven't met either of them but have interacted with them on FB many times and they have been nothing but nice. I was so glad to be able to help them out through the fund and am hoping everything turns out well.

  2. Thanks Debra, I think I would absolutely lose my mind if I ever got to meet them in RL, it would be the best day ever. I've experienced the same as you with both of them. I know it's silly, but I feel like I know them because they are so giving of themselves. We figure any little way to give back to them is a must.

    1. Hi Debra, I can only echo your feelings and Ann's reply. It's very weird being so worried about someone you've never actually met yet feel like you know. My heart is so with Eric, TJ & the families at the moment, I can't imagine what it's like for them.