[Book Review] That Potent Alchemy by Tess Bowery

that-potent-alchemy-coverTitle: That Potent Alchemy
Author: Tess Bowery (Twitter)
Rating: Highly Recommended
Genre/Category:  Historical Romance, Regency, Erotic, Queer, Entertainment,
Release Date: October 4, 2016

Publisher: Seamchecker Ent.


Note: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review. All of the views in this review are my own.

That Potent Alchemy, the third book in Tess Bowery’s “Treading the Boards” series blows all of the historical romances I’ve been reading clear out of the water. One of my frequent complaints about diversity in publishing is that it’s very difficult to find authors who write characters I can relate to because they’re like me. Because they’re queer and brown and gender-whatever like me.

And That Potent Alchemy gave me that sense of belonging, that “I could be here” feeling that I rarely find in the historical romances I read.

In Tess Bowery’s England, there’s room for queer women and genderfluid people to be.Read More »

“Period Typical Racism” – One kind of historical accuracy in fiction that I wish would go away

Want to throw me out of a story in no time flat?

Include “Period Typical Racism” in a book written after 1989.

(Seriously, I read one Miss Fisher book because it was recommended as a “feminist James Bond” and honestly, I’d’ve preferred to read Fleming’s James Bond books because at least I can go into them knowing that the guy was a racist misogynist.)

The thing about looking at and reinventing older genres like Noir and Gothic fiction, is that you have a duty to reinvent, not rely, on harmful tropes. It’s your job as a writer writing in the twenty-first century to take our century into context. It’s your job to look at what was written years ago and go “no, I won’t do that”.

It’s your job to be better than the writers who were working in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.Read More »