Posted 20 hours ago

Bored Gay Werewolf: "An ungodly joy" Attitude Magazine

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Especially when a problem gets dropped into your lap and changes your life, and you’re not given a manual or any help, you’re just supposed to figure it out. Brian doesn’t pretend to be a hero, or especially want to save anyone else from this curse, however lost and isolating he finds being a werewolf. A novel about themes toxic masculinity and capitalism, expressed with charm, humour, and a few splatters of blood. I highlighted so much of Tyler's speech as rage inducing frequently, so the author here did a great job of executing the trust fund "bro" character well.

As someone who has met many Tylers (sadly), I did pick up the vibe faster than our protagonist (had to agree with side character Nik, begging him to pick up a book! I highlighted so many quotes that made me laugh, and I love how, behind the silly werewolf disguise (affectionate), this book is actually a deeply satirical exploration of queer culture, capitalism, and toxic masculinity. It delivers all that the title promises: Brian works as a waiter, gets drunk with his friends, picks up guys on grindr, and largely ignores his monthly shifts into a wolf. Restaurant manager Nik and co-worker Darby – both marvellous, vibrant characters – represent the light of this narrative: Brian is eager to have closer companionship with them, but maintains frustratingly arm’s-length friendships. In addition to Brian, there are two wonderful supporting characters in Darby, a Non-Binary polymath, and Nik, an overworked and under-paid bar manager and medical student.While I'd be excited to follow Brian, Nick, and Darby as they kick mythological-ass, the shift caught me off guard.

Bored Gay Werewolf is a novel about an aimless guy who happens to be a werewolf and what happens when he meets someone trying to create what seems to be a start-up for werewolves. The protagonist isn’t the most self-confident lycanthrope in Oregon, but he is a sweetheart and very relatable and his friends are just lovely.That doesn’t quite do justice to how important the theme of friendship was in the book, but you’ll just have to trust me. I've encountered, at least, three or four real-life 'Tylers', but that might be because I work in tech lol. The mythological creature functions here as an allegory of sorts for toxic masculinity and hustle culture; Santorella, though, portrays the queer community in a more positive, even comforting light. There all are these lessons I've learned on my way: how to 'harness the best within' through strength training; the importance of communing with nature; repeating regular affirmations to control your emotions and manage your monthly transition. The book explores just that, the intertwining of being loved and being known, emphasizing how loneliness can make one desperate for connection.

The werewolf lore was a great allegory for how toxic MLMs and cults prey on vulnerable people and this book does a great job exploring that in a really humorous and smart way. As Brian delves deeper into Tyler's worldview, darker motivations emerge, and he must use everything he's learned and everyone he knows to escape it.Not perfectly imperfect in beautiful ways, but believably humanly flawed… even if they’re actually a werewolf. Admittedly, I like to think I hold life to a higher standard than Brian's fairly flippant "oopsie-daisies", but than again, I'm not a werewolf. But this stranger’s motives might not be as pure as Brian first thinks, and this new relationship puts a strain on Brian’s friendships. I picked Bored Gay Werewolf off the library's June pride display, because who could resist a title like that?

I’m hoping the way it ended means there is another book on the horizon – I’d love to see Brian’s adventures continue with Nik and Darby by his side! When he meets Tyler, who seems to have everything sorted out and is also a werewolf, maybe it is the chance Brian needs to get his life on track.

Brian, an aimless slacker in his twenties, works double shifts at his waiter job, never cleans his apartment and gets black-out drunk with his restaurant comrades, Nik and Darby.

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