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From the Ashes

(Boystown #6)

4.47  ·  Rating details ·  319 ratings  ·  73 reviews
The most unlikely person in the world asks Private Investigator Nick Nowak to investigate the unsuspicious death of a priest.

It's winter 1984, Private Investigator Nick Nowak has allowed his life to fall to pieces: he's stopped taking cases, lost his apartment and works as a bartender at a sleazy bar tucked under the El. All he wants to do is lick his wounds after the deat
Kindle Edition, 194 pages
Published May 23rd 2014 (first published December 1st 2013)
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Marshall Thornton Sorry. I just saw this. The ebook is being re-released on Amazon February 22nd.

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4.47  · 
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 ·  319 ratings  ·  73 reviews

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5++++++ stars


Some people are like orchids: delicate, easily bruised, wilted by a chill breeze. Others are more like weeds: stubborn, hard to dig out, impossible to kill. Most people don’t know which they are until life starts to kick them around. Early in 1984, I found out which I am. I’m a weed.


And now i need some fluff.

"I went back to watching the videos. A boy, who sang like a girl, told me not to stop believing—though what I wasn’t supposed to stop believing was a bit elusive."

The waiting has been worth it.

Marshall Thornton DID IT AGAIN!!!!!

And I swear, it was not THAT easy.

The book 5 was a PERFECTION.
It was almost IMPOSSIBLE to overtop it. I knew it.
It is why I was afraid to read the book 6.
Of course I was waiting for it.
You can't even imagine HOW I was waiting for it.
It had to be released on 23th of May.
I spent ALMOST the whole day checking Amazon every 10 Min. NOTHING.
I was exhausted. I was angry!
And...I was afraid: "What if the book 6 wont't be as good as
Written December 1, 2014

4 1/2 - Another enjoying "Nick Nowak" story - AWESOME and cool as expected

Book #6

A highly recommended series for romance readers which also loves crime stories. The Boystown series is about gay men in the 1980:s Chicago. There in Boystown is this cool, tough, horny gay MC —the unforgetable— private investigator Nick Nowak.

Chicago 1984 - in a closet with a Catholic priest...

‘I made an attempt to not think about h
Rosa, really
Apr 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Why they hell do I have to recommend it? You should be reading it already.

Dear Mr. Marshall Thornton;

May I call you Marshall? Great, Marshall – bloody hell can you write. You’re one of the few authors that make me want to get real physical with my Kindle. I don’t know how else to express my appreciation of your Boystown series. Well, okay, maybe I could just say, “Dude, you rock.” However, I suspect that you may be the type of guy to stop listening the minute you hear the word “dude.” So, instead I’ll say, Marshall, you make me want to French kiss a piece of machinery
Apr 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

Whilst I was in the first chapters of this book, I saw that a friend of mine had finished it and was bemoaning the fact that she had to wait a year for another instalment. I was a bit blasé about it as that is what happens in a series. Now I want to whine like she did, do I have to wait another year for another instalment. These couple of days I had gotten used to Nick again and now I have to do without again, I certainly feel like pouting here.

What to say about the actual book. Thornto
* A Reader Obsessed *
Nick has been limping along over the past year, trying to forget his former life and actually, succeeding. When he least expects it, from the last person on earth he'd thought would come to him, he's drawn back into detecting. And by golly he's still good at it. He's tenacious, resourceful, and shockingly, not all of his brain cells have been killed by Johnny Walker Red.

Despite his return from anonymity, Nick is still mourning. He still doubts his morality and is still so, so bitter. However, he
Audible headphones_icon_1

Brad Langer is an awesome narrator and Marshall Thornton is a fantastic writer. A perfect combination.

My original review to Boystown 6.

I've just recognised - I have 3 editions of this book:

1)The first edition I bought by MLR Press.
2)The second edition from Amazon.

That means, I'm armed and ready for the book 7!

I'm counting down the hours and minutes to the release date of Boystown 7!!!
Jun 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing

**Spoilers Ahead**

Have you ever wanted to drop everything and disappear? Hide from everyone that knows your story? Go where no one knows your problems and pain?

Nick Nowak does just that.

But we can’t stay gone forever. Hiding only works for so long. Pain and memories need to be felt and dealt with. We need to remember…

(view spoiler)

*sigh* Nick will make your heart ache in this v
“Was that all life really was? A series of betrayals? Was there no way we could avoid damaging each other?”

What a breathtaking journey it had been. It was intense, all-consuming, poignant and thought-provoking. And luckily, it's not over yet..
“Questions, all I had were questions. It occurred to me that questions were really all there ever was. We almost never found answers in life.”

Reading Boystown is like having a neverending fever. It's very contagious and those starting the series should
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Jun 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Well, I think it speaks for itself that I read this in one sitting.

Nick is at the lowest point in his life. He gave up his apartment, he isn't working as a PI (haven't been to his office in months) and he is working as a bartender at a place none of his friends or acquaintances could find him. And yet one of the least likely people enters the bar and asks for his help to investigate the death of a priest.
Nick soon realizes that a priest who died of heart attack had a little help.

The mystery is
“I don’t mean I love you that way. Not like I love Ross. Not like you love Harker. I mean, I care about you, Nick. You’re my friend. With all the things that are happening in the world, shouldn’t it be okay? Just to say I love you?” “Yes, it should be okay.” And it was.
It was perfect. Nick is perfect. Nick in the closet with a priest is perfect. Even Nick and Mrs. Harker are perfect.
Nick at rock bottom. Totally rock bottom.

I am reading these back to back and so very fast there is just no time to really gather my thoughts. There are a ton of great reviews out there so I feel I don't need to add much.

This killed my soul. Although there seemed to be a feeling of hope or something throughout it was mostly soul killing.

May 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
So, yes, I needed a couple of days to get my thoughts organized.

It was not an easy read, it was very melancholic, you feel Nick's suffering and grieving through each page.
Nick is hiding from the world and punishing himself, he lost contact with all his friends, he stopped working as a privet investigator, he left his flat and pass the days drinking or serving drinks.

Funnily enough, it is Harker's mother that (unknowingly???) giving Nick an out from the darkness by asking him to investigate her p
Oct 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites-mm

I just realized I hadn't rated this. I love this series. I'll try to write a review when I listen to this audio book.
So far, that was the best part for me in this series.
I'm sad it was the last audiobook. Brad Langer did a pretty good job.

“Are you going to give me a penance?” The answer frightened me. What would he assign me? A thousand Hail Marys? Five hundred Our Fathers?
Then finally he said, “Your penance is to forgive yourself.”
“That’s not easy.”
“Are you asking me for an easy penance?”
“I’m not someone who does things the easy way.”
That made him smile again. I wished he hadn’t. When he smiled it felt m
Ulysses Dietz
Aug 21, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Boystown 6
Up from the Ashes

By Marshall Thornton

4.5 stars

I think Marshall Thornton’s writing is getting better. The book opens a year after Book 5 closed, a story tainted with violent death and tragic loss for Nick Nowak. Right away I noticed that Thornton’s familiar “noir” style—terse, descriptive, lean—is richer and spiced with little bits of wry humor and vivid description. Not that I haven’t enjoyed every one of these Nick Nowak detective stories; but something about the language in this one
Connie Cat
At the end of this book Nick has turned the corner and is starting to heal and move forward with his life after losing Harker. But it is a long and melancholy road. I feel like I am still grieving as well. Still though, an excellent book and audiobook. I especially appreciated the growing respect between him and Mrs. Harker. As always, the mystery aspect is really well done. Looking forward to Book 7 - due out next month? And hoping that the audiobook comes along with it.

A.B. Gayle
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This series justs gets better and better.

You don't have to have read the previous ones to follow the plot, but the ongoing saga surrounding Nick's personal life is better appreciated if you have read them all in sequence.

I loved the way AIDS was handled in this book. In the previous ones we saw the growing awareness of it in the community.

In this one, we see the different ways gay men coped with it emotionally and physically. Some turn to religion and rejection of their former life, seeing it as
I loved Nick in this book, it’s not hard to miss the effect of his life on him. He seems changed but still the same, and he seems even more real, it gets impossible not to identify with him, all his hardships, anger, regrets, and his loss, you can’t help crying with him and laughing with him. And this is incredible and what else do you want from a character? Nick is truly a wonderful character. I want to read about him forever!

And there's Harker's album, and my God it broke my heart even more. I
Jul 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"Some people are like orchids: delicate, easily bruised, wilted by a chill breeze. Others are more like weeds: stubborn, hard to dig out, impossible to kill. Most people don't know which they are until life starts to kick them around. Early in 1984, I found out which I am. I'm a weed."

Excellent--brilliant--exceptionally good--I can't describe how great this book is--Marshall Thornton weaves mystery around life in the early 1980's--this series is a must read--actually I'll go back and read it aga
Mare SLiTsReaD Reviews
I am writing this review with a heavy heart. Because…..

It’s been a little over a week and I haven’t read a thing. Thank you Marshall Thornton! You’ve ruined me.

Its the end guys, and I don’t really know what to do with myself. I keep replaying scenes in my head. I’m at a loss on how to function properly now. How do I do it? How do I go back to normal after reading this series?? I can’t get passed it. I am wrapped in this bubble that is stuck in the 80′s and I can’t get out of it. And truth be tol
Let me just say upfront that it has been a fascinating read which means this review is written after I've already finished volume 8 so my opinion may be skewered. I'll try to avoid spoilers.

Hard road back to living for Nick. (view spoiler)
Kaje Harper
Jun 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
As this book opens, Nick is seen coping, or not coping, with the realities of what he did and what happened in the last installment. This is a shaken Nick, changed, searching. But as time goes by, you see a hint of the old, intelligent and curious PI emerging. The title is apt, and the positive arc of this story is welcome.

One of the most poignant parts of this is reading about the varying reactions of the gay men around Nick to the still-perplexing onslaught of AIDS. At that time, no one really
May 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing

This Is an excellent book.Love the series and hope to continue reading more about Nick and all the other characters soon. I hope we will have at least 10 books more.
Dee Wy
Oct 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another good mystery and I can't believe it - Mrs. Harker LIKES Nick now. Will wonders never cease? Must read just to find out how that happened, lol
May 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wasn't as thrilled by the mystery storyline in this one as I have been with some of the other books, so while I loved the personal storyline, I'm bumping it down to 4 stars.
Lisa The Novel Approach
The following is the reason I picked up the ebook version of Boystown 6: From the Ashes for review:

I had just finished listening to the first Boystown mystery on audio. I really enjoyed the first three short stories and thought, why not skip books 2, 3, 4, and 5? (I didn’t own them…yet…by the way.) Since the first three mysteries were considered standalones, I could read the others later, right? I thought I’d be lucky and find out Boystown 6: From the Ashes also was a standalone. Um. Not. By the
After the utter heartbreak of Murder Book, the sixth book in Thornton's series is about sin and forgiveness, resolution and redemption.

He [Father Joseph] spoke about sin, but not sin as you find it in the Bible, more about something we do to ourselves; that when we are not our true selves, we sin against ourselves. That when we choose to do things that we know will hurt our true selves we are sinning.

Against a backdrop of the possible murder of a priest - a case brought to Nick by the most unlik
We were quiet a long time and then he said, “I love you.” 
I wondered if I’d misunderstood him. The discomfort of the idea must have shown on my face because he added, “I don’t mean I love you that way. Not like I love Ross. Not like you love Harker. I mean, I care about you, Nick. You’re my friend. With all the things that are happening in the world, shouldn’t it be okay? Just to say I love you?”
“Yes, it should be okay.”
And it was.

Some great new characters and relationships here. But damn the
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Ask Marshall Thor...: Boystown 6 37 25 May 24, 2014 08:56AM  

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Two-time Lambda Award-winning author, Marshall Thornton is best known for the Boystown and Pinx Video mystery series. Other novels include the erotic comedy The Perils of Praline, or the Amorous Adventures of a Southern Gentleman in Hollywood, Desert Run and Full Release. Marshall has an MFA in screenwriting from UCLA, where he received the Carl David Memorial Fellowship and was recognized in the ...more

Other books in the series

Boystown (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Three Nick Nowak Mysteries (Boystown #1)
  • Three More Nick Nowak Mysteries (Boystown #2)
  • Two Nick Nowak Novellas (Boystown #3)
  • A Time For Secrets (Boystown #4)
  • Murder Book (Boystown #5)
  • Bloodlines (Boystown #7)
  • The Lies That Bind (Boystown #8)
  • Lucky Days (Boystown, #9)
  • Gifts Given (Boystown, #10)
  • Heart's Desire (Boystown #11)
“My grief had become a thick scab; I picked at it from time to time, but mostly I left it alone. I didn’t want to know what was underneath.” 10 likes
“Kindness is the only real bravery.” 7 likes
More quotes…