Eli's Reviews > Rogue Passion

Rogue Passion by Chelsea M. Cameron
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really liked it
bookshelves: m-f-romance, mlm, wlw, resistance-and-social-justice, poc-mc, queer

I loved these stories! They dealt with different parts of resisting. This included protesting, working inside the government to try and change policies and representatives, and by using art to challenge people’s thinking. I liked that most of the stories had older characters, in their late twenties and thirties, and it was nice to see the reassurance that if you’re interested in romantic relationships you don’t need to find someone in your early twenties. You can wait.
Most follow an insta-like trope but didn’t push it to an extent that I disliked.
I was thrilled when I was accepted for this ARC because I recognized one of the authors that wrote a story for this anthology and it let me discover new authors that I had never known about, and some I had only ever seen through posts on twitter.

These stories will be reviewed in the order of wlw, mlm, and finally m/f romances instead of the order they appear in the anthology.
Spoilers mostly during the Taking Aim review, which has been hidden.

The Girl in the Picture by Chelsea M. Cameron is the first story in the anthology and is a fluffy wlw short. I am very familiar with their other wlw stories and they did not disappoint with how much fluff they put in this story. I adored Saylor and her awkwardness around Echo as soon as she sees her that continued even as they were getting to know each other. The protesting aspect was nice to read about and the author made sure the subject wasn’t too heavy to handle for a short story, throwing in some comedy relief as Saylor was reliving the protest for the interview.
The only POC in this story is Echo, who is an Asian American.

Fight Fire with Fire by Sionna Fox was probably my favorite story out of the entire anthology. This author is new to me and I’m definitely going to be checking out the rest of their work. This is the second and last wlw story and features a museum coordinator, Frannie, who has acquired photographs of a deceased nonbinary artist to host and the artist’s muse, Ashley. Ashley is a singer doing solo work. She’s southern and fat and absolutely loves her body. I loved her. The relationship seemed to happen very naturally and we switch between the two’s POVs and the mutual pining was cute.
The story brought up not only museums and art galleries getting their budgets cut by sponsors pulling out and relying on government funding to support the art programs, but it talks about how difficult it is for nonbinary and trans people to go to a hospital and not feel safe enough to talk about your gender or lack thereof.

Nature’s Heart by KD Fisher is a mlm story with one character working as a public interest attorney and the other is a part of the environmental coalition that Harry is representing. This story was another fantastic read and didn’t deal with any homomisia, even if one of the characters lived in what seemed to be a small town. This romance seemed more realistic than a few of the other stories, even adding in a time skip so the characters aren’t dating within a short amount of time. The epilogue was a nice touch and I enjoyed Max as a character.
There was a side character who is a wlw with a mentioned girlfriend! Both male characters are proclaimed gay.

A Safe Place by Rebecca Vaughn is the second and last mlm story in the anthology, with the two characters in college. This deals with the #MeToo movement as one is a survivor and has homomisia in the first few pages. I liked reading the two of them work things out and give each other the motivation to do things no matter if it’s hard to do, such as supporting Jonas speaking out about his harasser or Troy going through with his ‘Love is Love’ art installation.
The only problem I had with this story is the Love is Love movement, which I personally have issues with as it excludes aromantics and I am on that spectrum.
Both main characters are proclaimed gay.

The Suit and the Doll by Zoey Castile is an incredible m/f romance. Sofia works in a strip club and she meets Rory who works at a company that gentrifies land and was having doubts about making people move away from the only homes they’ve ever known. I liked how the author discussed dropping out of college despite having an opportunity to be something more to support your family financially makes you afraid of changing your life or even trying to get out.
Sofia is a POC.

Schooling Her by Robin Lovett is a m/f short story where the two main characters work in a private high school. It’s a nice story of instalust between a white headmistress and her black dean who work together to get equal pay for equal work accepted at the school. This is the only story with a m/f romance who talk about the queer community as the headmistress realizes mostly straight white cis men are the ones who get paid the most. There is a moment where a side character says a racist comment about Phillip and Regina being together, but she realizes her mistake and apologizes for it.

Taking Aim by Jeanette Grey is a m/f romance and the last story in the anthology. I really liked this story to begin with, but the ending made me a little uncomfortable as a queer reader. I liked this story for dealing with your representative directly as the heroine waited in front of her rep’s building alone for weeks only to be ignored after she was in a school shooting. This leads to her becoming a protesting heroine, taking reluctant charge after getting the confidence from the story’s hero, and soon finds herself running for her state’s legislature.
(view spoiler)
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Reading Progress

July 11, 2018 – Started Reading
July 11, 2018 – Shelved
July 15, 2018 – Finished Reading

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