Out of the Blue
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Out of the Blue

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  689 ratings  ·  80 reviews
Grieving over the death of his lover, British flying ace Bat Bryant accidentally kills the man threatening him with exposure. Unfortunately there’s a witness: the big, rough American they call “Cowboy” – and Cowboy has his own price for silence.
ebook, 111 pages
Published August 31st 2009 by Liquid Silver Publishing (first published 2009)
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Best Gay Historical Romance
19th out of 415 books — 688 voters
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Community Reviews

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Another good Josh Lanyon tale, short but sweet, if you can say that about World War I

This was the tale of flying aces in middle of the first World War, and yes, the relevant episode of 'Blackadder' came to my mind several times I'm sorry to say.

'Bat' (Aubrey, yep, they mostly had crazy nicknames), was an ace pilot with a number of kills, who just happened to like one of the other pilots 'Owl' (Gene). Gene had unfortunately been killed, and Bat's mechanic Orton had discovered incriminating eviden...more
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I better start this review with two obvious facts:

1) This story was about a British fighter pilot stationed in France during World War I.
2) I would never have thought that I'd enjoy such a story this much.

Out of the Blue is a perfect example of how talented and multifaceted Josh Lanyon is as a writer. I can only imagine the amount of research it takes to write a story like this one. And the amount of daring it takes, too.

There is certainly sadness about the story. I like the way the horrors of w...more
Emanuela ~plastic duck~
May 16, 2011 Emanuela ~plastic duck~ rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Emanuela ~plastic duck~ by: Snowtulip
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This short story was just another example to me that Josh Lanyon CAN WRITE ANYTHING WELL...

This is a war story...Bat a British pilot serving in France during WWI accidentally has killed a mechanic trying to blackmail him about his relationship with another pilot who has just been shot down...In comes Cowboy a Yank pilot...Cowboy helps Bat to sort out the mess.

Cowboy wants Bat, and he not beyond being sneaky to get him, they begin a sexual relationship new territory for Bat despite his past relat...more
Emma Sea
Typical Lanyon story: he made me cry yet again. I would have liked an HEA, rather than a barely HFN, but I loved the storytelling on the way. I'm not generally a fan for war stories but the dogfight sections were marvellous. Thank you for the great pick, Cheryl :)

OUT OF THE BLUE is set in 1916; story about two pilot/fighters. Again, it's a nice and light read. I wish that it is not a novella because I think it will be more interesting if it's longer. The setting can be epic, the love story can be more depth.
After the death of his lover Bat is a man who seems to have no reason to carry on other than leading his squadron into battle. There he takes unnecessary risks and is filled with despair. Things get even worse when, on the verge of being cruelly blackmailed, he accidently kills the man trying to extort money from him. Cowboy, an American pilot proves to be an unlikely ally after witnessing the crime and comes to Bat’s aid. Cowboy has his own agenda however and exacts a high price for his assista...more
In this novella, Josh Lanyon has stepped out of his comfort zone and written, not a mystery, but a drama set in 1st World War France. It tells the story of Bat, who is serving as a pilot and the equivalent of a squadron leader, in the RFC (the forerunner of the Royal Air Force). This involves patrolling over enemy lines twice a day, in what was basically an aeroplane made of wood, canvas and engine parts, looking for, and engaging with German planes. It's a dangerous job and nearly every time th...more
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Again, I have to concede that Josh Lanyon is simply a master at writing short stories. This book again shows that you can put character depth and development, thorough world building, selective minute descriptions, and a rounded and satisfying story into a book length that (in the edition I bought) was less than 100 pages.
Having said that, I have to admit that this is not my favourite story plot-wise, but Lanyon's familiar writing proficiency, his talent for story construction and pace - all tha...more
Poignant and beautiful story of men who face their mortality daily and the loss of lovers, friends, brothers, and comrades. Bat experiences passion and intimacy in Cowboy's arms. Through Cowboy's persistence, affection, and tenderness, (Bat) allows himself to live, love, and make the moment count...
I think this is my least favorite book written by Josh Lanyon. I just had a hard time empathizing with the characters. Especially Cowboy's attitude towards Bat bothered me. Telling someone, I know you want it, while you're blackmailing him into having sex... I don't know, it really bothered me.
Heather C
It took me a little bit to get into this one and much of the sex was pretty much dubious, but I ended up really liking it in the end. I loved Bat and Cowboy and it saddens me to know that these two probably won't be together forever. :(
Tami (synchro from BL)
I stayed away from this one for some time, because of the setting (WWI). And I was right, it made me cry.But it was also so very beautiful.

A poignant short novel about two pilots - it was simply beautiful.
This historical romance novella was an intense and riveting read. Set in France during WW1, the story focuses on Bat, a British soldier who leads a squadron of pilots. The novella begins with Bat accidentally committing a crime, and then to his rescue comes Cowboy, a swaggering American pilot on his team who steps in to assist in covering things up. Only Bat realizes that Cowboy has a price, and that Bat’s relationship with his teammate, recently killed in battle, was not as secret as he’d thoug...more
Ryan Loveless
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Warning: This review might contain what some people consider SPOILERS.

Rating: 8/10

- Some excellent writing. Here’s an example: “A crust of frost sparkled on the ground like broken stars and a hint of cordite drifted on the breeze.” I just discovered Lanyon pretty recently, and I’m impressed.
- Well-formed and interesting characters.
- Intricate and all-encompassing WWI details. The historical setting is depicted very well. I found the air battles particularly intriguing.

- Kind of sad....more
Delightful story, well written and attentive to detail that gives the reader the sense of being among WWI flyers. In a short novel, it's admirable to be transported to a remote time and place so effectively. It's a compelling plot peopled by believable characters, and not without it's twists. Like many of Josh Lanyon's stories ends like a ski-jump: You know where you'll land, but you're still flying through the air when the final page arrives.
Bryl Tyne
Oct 03, 2009 Bryl Tyne rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Historical Military M/M romance fans
Out of the Blue is some of Lanyon's best writing. I loved this story.
I was incredibly moved by this story. It’s short but very intense, and it addresses many contrasting feelings: loss, hope, responsibility, fear, love and desire, all within the context of World War I, beautifully and sensitively evoked.
I was crying for so many young lives lost to a senseless war. I thought Josh was able to capture really well the spirit of the time. He can portray the background to historical events with accuracy, respect and sensitivity, and that's IMO an even more laudable eff...more
Nan Hawthorne
From Our Story: GLBTQ Historical Fiction at www.glbtbookshelf.com

At an aerodrome in 1916 France, flying ace Bat morns for his lost lover, Owl, whose airplane crasshed during a dogfight. When a scoundrel threatens blackmail he haulss off and slugs him, and the man hits his head in falling and dies. bat is puzzled when Cowboy, an American flyer, offers to cover up the death. It is not long before Cat discovers that Cowboy has a little blackmail of his own, forcing Bat into a sexual relationship th...more
Barb ~rede-2-read~
This story kept me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end. It was intense, hot, action-packed and typical Josh Lanyon perfect craftsmanship. I truly didn't think I could get so wrapped up in a story so quickly, but boy. was I wrong.

Aubrey, aka Bat, was the captain of the A flight team of RAF pilots in WWI. The love of his life, Gene, was killed the day before the story began. As it opens, Bat loses his temper with a mechanic who is attempting to blackmail him over his and Gene's romance....more
I loved this - this is how a novella is done - it's almost unbelievable how much detail and development happens in 100 pages. This is one of the few authors from which I will consciously buy a novella. As a rule I don’t like them because I always end up feeling cheated that it's too short, too expensive, plain stupid and I typically will not purchase unless they are part of a larger story arc.

Even with a HFN ending and the threat of death to the MCs because of the war, it was still satisfying....more
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Book Utopia
The story’s greatest strength lies in the verisimilitude of its setting. Lanyon has done his research. Every word feels authentic, and the action is tight and densely packed. In fact, the prose itself feels far denser than standard Lanyon fare. It rolls and weaves in complicated measures, forcing a careful reader to slow down and truly savor each word. Reading it was a joy. I liked that the fight scenes were as essential to the romance as the sex scenes. As much, if not more, attention was paid...more
Erin (PT)
On the one hand, I did enjoy this story, enough that I couldn't sleep before finishing it. On the other hand, I agree with a friend of mine who read it that the squicky power dynamics that the story is built on make it impossible for me to enjoy it fully or to completely buy in to the/a romance between Bat and Cowboy.

There's only so much you can hand wave for sexual dynamics of the time period, militaristic PTSD, or well trodden romantic tropes of coercion being okay "because s/he really wante...more
This story is several of my favorite genres all rolled into one: historical, male/male relationships, romance, drama, and erotica. With main characters named Bat and Cowboy you expect to be dropped in the middle of a western, which by the way is also a favorite genre of mine, but this time author has brought his way with words to the airfield of World War One. Now, I won't lie, the first time you meet Cowboy you're not real sure if you are suppose to like him or not but we quickly find out that...more
i loved Cowboy* right from the start! i don't understand why other readers thought he was awful! & Bat was sweet :)
Very good m/m historical romance about a British and an American pilot in France during World War I.
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A distinct voice in gay fiction, multi-award-winning author JOSH LANYON has been writing gay mystery, adventure and romance for over a decade. In addition to numerous short stories, novellas, and novels, Josh is the author of the critically acclaimed Adrien English series, including The Hell You Say, winner of the 2006 USABookNews awards for GLBT Fiction. Josh is an Eppie Award winner and a three-...more
More about Josh Lanyon...
Fatal Shadows (Adrien English Mystery, #1) The Dark Tide (Adrien English Mystery, #5) A Dangerous Thing (Adrien English Mystery, #2) Death of a Pirate King (Adrien English Mystery, #4) Fair Game

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