Maelstrom 1-4

So I found out last week two weeks ago (sheesh; where did the time go?) that Yaoi Press is returning to printed graphic novels and


Seriously. I am so excited about this. I thought it called for a review of a great Yaoi Prose story, Maelstrom by Yamila Abraham with illustrations by Himitsu Studio. I’ve got the first four (out of eight) chapters sitting here waiting to be written up, so here we go!

First things first, as usual: Maelstrom is explicit yaoi. If you don’t know what that means, find out before you continue. (Who knows, you might like it!) It’s generally not-safe-for-work adult material… but that’s never stopped me from reading the like at work, so if you have an awesome workplace and/or an office to yourself, it might not matter. ^_^

Maelstrom 1-4 coversAll right, so: a quick summary of the first four chapters. Demerti steps off the ship onto Secren—a Wild West-esque mining planet devoid of women—and immediately experiences a disconcerting-yet-heated attraction to a man standing on the platform. Demetri’s straight, but—as his computer translator, Brainbox, tells him—Earthlings on Secren are struck with Lightning just as often as natives are. Determined to remain a Celibate, Demetri ignores the man, Malstrum, and heads deeper into the planet to set up his own mining operation. Complications arise (of course), and Demetri finds himself fighting for his own life (mostly unsuccessfully) until Malstrum, once (but no longer) the most successful mine boss on the planet, shows up to save him. Their attraction deepens until Demetri can no longer deny his feelings and he submits to Malstrum. All this while holding down a mining operation, finding miners to work with them, divvying up scarce rations, and warning off roadside bandits.

A few lines from the fourth chapter are my favorite so far. After Demetri submits to Malstrum, he expresses his disgust at other men who can “stick with a fucking rapist” and Malstrum points out that Secren isn’t as nice as Earth. Demetri says that if rape is what works on Secren, then fine, but when someone rapes an Earthling, it can destroy him (or her). Malstrum gently corrects him by saying,

Everyone wants to be the alpha. It’s a joke in the beginning. Eventually they want to mate and fight each other to decide. It’s kind of agreed on, you know? If I beat you, you’re getting fucked and I’m the alpha. If you beat me, I’m going to have to take it…

No one wants to beat their lover half to death. Lightning ends up being a curse. You know that’s what you’re headed for, and it kills you. When you see those few guys who say, ‘I’ll take your brand. I’ll be the beta,’ it’s so beautiful it makes you cry. Everyone celebrates. The beta becomes the hero. Everyone’s jealous of the alpha. And they have the best marriages. No strife between them. No resentment.

I read that and thought to myself, “Yes! Thank you! Exactly!” and I was so angry that chapter 4 ended shortly thereafter because it meant writing up this review before I could continue reading the story. Gah. (Haha; is it bad that even when I’m reading porn, I still want a good plot? Is it obvious by now?) And yes, there is some heated loving going on between Malstrum and Demetri, so explicit yaoi lovers have no fear: the hot guy/guy sex is definitely there. (Woo, I made a rhyme!)

In any case, I highly recommend this story. It’s one of Abraham’s better ones, in my opinion, and completely worth the (inexpensive) cost. You can even read free previews of chapters 1, 3, and 4 before you buy so you know you’re getting quality.

Maelstrom is available on Amazon Kindle; you can get a Kindle application/program free for your computer even if you don’t own any ereader or iPad-type device. The first chapter is roughly 25 pages for just $1.49; chapter 2 is 29 pages for $2.99; chapter 3 is also 29 pages for $2.99; and the fourth chapter is 28 pages for $2.99.

Hopefully I’ll be able to review the second half of Maelstrom soon. I haven’t actually read chapters 5-8 yet, so I’m looking forward to finding out what happens with Demetri and Malstrum. (Also, more sex!)

Viannah E. Duncan

Viannah E. Duncan is a writer and activist hailing originally from Los Angeles. She lives outside of Baltimore, Maryland, and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Wilkes University. She has a cat, Cleo.

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