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The Silent Hustler

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  26 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Best known for editing the edgy gay fiction of the Velvet Mafia website, Sean Meriwether has quietly been writing short fiction and building up a body of his own work. The Silent Hustler collects his short fiction published over the last decade. Meriwether's fiction spans in range from the literary ("Things I Can't Tell My Father") to the revolutionary ("Burn the Rich") to ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 25th 2011 by Lethe Press (first published 2009)
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Paul Jr.
For years, Sean Meriwether has served as editor of two of the most cutting-edge web magazines out there: Outsider Ink (now shuttered) and Velvet Mafia: Dangerous Queer Fiction. During his time with both markets, Meriwether has found exceptional literature by some of the best writers working. Occasionally he's also thrown one of his own works into the mix and that is how I first discovered Meriwether as an author in his own right. Over the years, Meriwether has been amassing an enviable body of w ...more
Jan 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Short story authors are often overlooked. Their stories may entice, delight, and arouse but rarely is the author remembered with strong, visceral emotions. That’s usually reserved, for good or bad, for longer length work. Here Sean Meriwether has offered a packed collection of brilliantly written, deeply moving stories that are a must read. Anyone walking away from this anthology will remember Meriwether’s name and likely have a strong reaction to it. The strength of such clean writing, evocativ ...more
Mar 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
Sean Meriwether stitches together an impressive collection of short stories in The Silent Hustler that are visceral, unsettling, poetic, beautiful, and real. He takes a magnifying glass to the edgy side of gay life, following unique characters that seem to jump off the pages and fire the imagination.

I won’t recount every story, but suffice to say that the author flexes his considerable talent to create a series of disturbing tales that challenge the reader, both emotionally and psychologically.
Aug 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: queer, short-stories
A real "mix tape" of short stories and criminally unknown, if you ask me. Granted, there are stories in here that delve into taboos and violence, but overall Meriwether offers a great collection of snapshots of gay culture/fantasy. The beginning is thoughtful, reveries on father/son and father/brother relationships, then delves into the character's erotic life, eventually scenes of soft porn, with a couple punctuations of all-out pornography, then the tone finally dials back for some surreality ...more
Nov 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mm-read
The 1st two sections, my favorites, are more relationship based: father/son, bully/target, friend/lover. The stories loosely explore the growth of a confused, lustful boy to an out & sophisticated gay man. Like many of these pieces, "Things I Can't Tell My Father" is breathtaking & bittersweet.

The 2nd half is a more action-driven variety: all erotic, some violent, psychotic, tragic. Every time I thought a story couldn't possibly go there, off it went dinging every boundary. I'm not sure if I lov
Tommy Howell
Nov 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
This was an eclectic collection of darkly themed gay short stories. Yes, there's some erotica, but often the sex is either discomforting and unsatisfying to the reader or the character. The hottest sex scenes are in the most dangerous situations, which really adds fuel to the fire (literally in one story.)

The tales of growing up gay in a small town rang true in weird ways. Sean really captured a lot of the essence of the time period in stories like "So Long Anita Bryant and Thanks for Everything
Another reviewer (thank you Alan Chin) used the perfect descriptor for this collection of shorts...unsettling. These stories are dark and gritty and yet, I'm glad I read them. Sometimes 'unsettling' = 'satisfying'. ...more
William Freeman
Apr 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
What can I say about these stories brilliantly written some very disturbing but will seek out more of his works
Emanuela ~plastic duck~
Dec 12, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: glbt
The stories in this collection are not of the feel-good kind and I don't really feel equipped to write a review about them. I liked the first stories - those about the father/son relationship and about Kevin and the way he copes with his sexuality in a small city. There is a section which is set in New York and I enjoyed those stories, especially the one which is a sort of tabloid where two men confront themselves (or maybe avoid confrontation) in a blistering hot restaurant in summer in an almo ...more
May 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I've had The Silent Hustler, a collection of twenty-six stories, in my TBR for a long, long time. I can't tell you how fantastic this collection is! It begins with two gorgeous stories about fathers and sons "Things I Can't Tell My Father," and "Ice Water." These two contemporary/lit fiction stories are brilliantly written with intimacy of thought and emotion. The collection is then divided into three sections: Frankenstein, Alone in the Country, Boys in the City, and Sax and Violins. Each secti ...more
Apr 16, 2011 rated it did not like it
UGh....this book contains a story of a misguided poor boy getting molested and raped by prisoner.....And somehow this is glorified? I am truly horrified....even if this is fiction....this is just poor taste...
Apr 26, 2012 rated it it was ok
I didn't enjoy this book like I thought I would - It was much too dark for me. ...more
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Sean Meriwether has published over short stories in multiple venues including Best Gay Love Stories and Lodestar Quarterly . His collection of short fiction, The Silent Hustler , was released by Lethe Press (2009). He is currently writing for The Green Economist , a journal focused on Social Issues, Climate Change and Sustainable Development. ...more

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