Seven Deadly Queens (FuBar #3), Jess Whitecroft
Rating: 5 Stars
Publisher: Self Published
Genre: Gay Romance
Tags: Drag Queens, Contemporary Setting, Humour, Social Commentary, Mentions of Drug Use, Sexy Romance, Interracial MCs, Series
Reviewer: Kazza K
Purchase At: amazon.com
Pride, Sloth, Wrath, Gluttony, Lust, Greed and Envy – there’s no shortage of the Seven Deadly Sins down at the FuBar, and as the holiday season swings into gear it’s enough to make even Justin the bartender start worrying about the stains on his soul. For Sheila the Dealer, sin is a source of inspiration, as she plans her next big photographic project – Seven Deadly Queens.
When a small Christmas miracle returns jailbird Luis to the padded bosom of his dysfunctional drag family, it’s all hands on deck to beat those mugs, cinch those waists and show up looking sinful, even though Wrath is starving, Sloth smells like sandwiches, Greed is under house arrest and Lust is a nervous drag virgin who has absolutely no idea what she’s doing.
And it’s all fun and games until someone punches out Envy.
Glittery, messy, shamelessly trashy – pour yourself an Amaretto Sour (prosthetic toe optional) and take a dive into a very FuBar Christmas.
It’s coming up to Christmas and much is happening in FuBar land. For an entrée, Justin is confessing at his local church, and lord knows how the confessional, the whole church, Father O’Reardon didn’t spontaneously combust by the time Justin finished. Seriously.
This is the tip of the iceberg. It’s hard for Justin to pick five. There are soooo many confession-worthy moments for him.
Justin is currently fucking Dev, aka Sheila the Dealer, and thinking about church and Catholicism and a do-over for the holiday season. Although, to be fair, Justin’s also thinking about Adam’s ten inch cock and those long legs wrapped around Ryan, him too. Definitely Ryan’s tender but filthy mouth, and the way he fits so well in the middle of all of that wantonness.
Bunny is worried about her drag baby, Miss Rose, or twenty-year old Luis, still being in jail, and Adam sends Bunny to visit regularly since he served his time.
Prison time was Bunny time, because that was what Rose needed right now. She needed that snap and sashay and fuck-you, a thing that mere Adam couldn’t always deliver.
However, since the last visit, there’s also been riots and a lot of overcrowding. Holiday miracles do occur – Christmas, Hunukkah, etc., – and Luis ends up being let out early with an ankle monitor, a PO, and regular urine tests. There’s temptation everywhere in a drag bar but FuBar is home for Luis since his abuelita died. He has a room upstairs and that’s part of the conditions of being under house detention for the rest of the sentence – that he’s upstairs or in the kitchen area and not in the bar. Rose is pretty as a male and stunning as a female in drag, so much so that Sheila casts Rose as Greed in the upcoming The Seven Deadly Sins photoshoot, bending the rules of parole a tad – there’s always a reach-around at FuBar.
Things start to build in the crazy department when Stephen tells Justin he can have friends he doesn’t fuck, which Justin finds an interesting concept – Justin has fucked most of Pittsburgh.
“And it doesn’t bother you that you don’t have any friends you haven’t boned?”
“Is that a thing?” said Justin.
Helena takes a further step and makes a bet with Justin that he can’t make a friend without fucking them, not that Justin is judged for being the cock-loving power bottom that he is. Fresh from confession and reminiscing about the choirboy he once was, Justin sees some merit to it. Luis, also Catholic, tells Justin this is something he could do for the Season. Catholics are good at denying themselves when necessary. Besides, when he goes back to confession he won’t have any sins following him in. So it’s bet on, bitches! The reality is that it’s mostly Helena trying to say it’s okay for Justin to have friends without benefits in his life, it’s important. Unfortunately, Helena’s competitive side comes out to play, and so does Justin’s. Justin decides that Helena is moving the goalposts in relation to the T&C about the whole who you can’t fuck business, it’s complicated, the bet also gets upped to $500 so Justin goes full abstinence. Three weeks of no sex. Nada. In a world where the uninhibited Justin bangs like a dunny door in a storm, this is like the freaking Twilight Zone: Justin Edition. Of course, it’s all fun and games… until Justin thinks about it a bit more. No. Sex. No awesomely naughty ménage.
For the first time Justin had a sense of the enormity of what he’d signed up for. Bunny had given the green light for another threeway and Justin was going to have to turn it down. Or at least postpone it until after Christmas. This was a terrible idea.
There are plenty who are lamenting the closing of Justin’s sexual borders, the fun he likes to have, and is, in bed. That sporty little pierced dick, that body and attitude that are made for good times and sin being shut down, it’s a crime. Boo!
Meanwhile, Stephen is nervous that he may be boring in bed, especially given Bunny’s, Ryan’s, Justin’s sexual proclivities and, uh, passion – loud, filthy, and often should be their motto. Stephen’s worried that Hu is so concerned about Helena’s exes that he is overly gentle in bed with him. As lovely as it is, maybe he’d like to get a little freaky. Hell, maybe Helena would like that too, and not just when she’s on Molly – long story. Stephen’s also concerned that somehow he’ll fuck up a relationship with the best thing that’s ever happened to him. Then there’s Hu, he isn’t sure about whether he should make sexual overtures to Helena as well. Thank goodness sex is not a sacred topic at FuBar.
Ryan has gone from a once closeted midwestern jock, now sports teacher, to embracing being gay, kinky and loving drag, especially when Adam is Bunny and dresses in French maid outfits, lacy undies, tights and fuck-me heels. Especially when Adam is Adam and dresses the same way but with his huge dick untucked, sans undies. That’s on top of an ongoing desire for the threesome they once shared with Justin. Ryan is not alone in still desiring Justin in the middle. Adam also loves a Justinwich and they both think Justin is worth more to them than purely a little sumthin-sumthin on the side. But if Justin is going to win the bet, he has to hold out until the new year for that lovin’ they all want.
Ryan would very much like Adam to move in with him, but Adam’s not so sure. Since Bunny’s Instagram fame there’s been a ton of products to endorse, and there’s already a lot of drag gear that would need to be shipped into Ryan’s apartment. Adam can’t fathom why Ryan would want to be taken over by wigs, organza, and makeup – lots of makeup. Plus Adam has never been this serious before, as in live together serious. He adores Ryan but this is big. Adam also owns the FuBar building and likes to have naked moments on the rooftop. Can there be naked rooftop moments in another building?
The weirdness of the season at FuBar keeps on coming with the photoshoot of The Seven Deadly Sins drawing near. They’re short a Greed, Joy de Vivre had a Groupon Botox procedure go, um, south, and Lust becomes an interesting development. You just know this shoot is never going to end well because Venus Envy, queen bitch of the universe and the biggest fame whore around, is going to be in the same room as Bunny and co, and Venus doesn’t play well with others, especially when ‘others’ are the queens of FuBar. It wasn’t forgiven that Bunny and Helena stole the show in the last Instagram photoshoot with their Judgement of Paris moment. Venus making sure her (now green) rat-dog takes a crap on the steps of FuBar regularly doesn’t go over well either. Neither do her evil Instaminions. On the day of the shoot, Venus is a total bitch and things escalate, taking the natural FuBar course of chaos to new heights.
There are multiple POV throughout this book –
-which I would normally be worried about but this is FuBar and I love these guys, guys and gals. Jess Whitecroft really makes it work. It’s nice to be inside the primary characters’ heads to know what they’re thinking and feeling, because a few of them can put on a mask.
Bunny is a really a good drag mum. The love Bunny has for Miss Rose is special because it’s often the friends-as-family that can be most important. Someone needed to be there to show Luis/Rose the way through tough times and Adam/Bunny continues to step up. There are also plenty of jokes about Bunny’s ‘motherhood’.
“You. Make. Me. So. Happy,” Ryan said, punctuating the words with soft kisses.
“I know. Me, too.”
“I’m so glad having children didn’t put a dent in our sex life.”
“Yeah. Luckily he’s too big to breastfeed.”
Ryan laughed. “Ew. Well, that’s an upsetting mental image to start the day.”
Justin becomes a good friend to Luis which helps Justin twig to the fact that he can have awesome platonic friends. It was incredibly endearing and it made me so happy when Justin and Rose/Luis had page time together. When Luis/ Rose needed someone to just be there, not stressing something because s/he’s only twenty, still missing abuelita, Justin fit the bill – complete with Disney princesses, Elvis sandwiches, and stories of Elvis’ alien abduction, not to mention a little genuine kindness.
“Hey, Father,” he said, holding up the line to shake Father O’Reardon’s hand. “I know you’re, like, really busy this time of year, but can you say a prayer for my friend? Or his grandmother, actually. She died this year and he wanted to come himself, but he’s got an electronic tag and stuff.”
“Of course, Justin,” said Father O’Reardon. “What was her name?”
“Rosa. I don’t know her last name, but she was a seamstress. Had diabetes. God will know, right?”
We also meet Cher, Justin’s sister, and learn something of their home life when they were younger. That Justin has managed to grow up without anger, being so accepting, is something I respect because his family life wasn’t an easy one. On the flipside, his granny piss-selling business is also one of the reasons I love Justin. The way his mind works.
“You take care of yourself,” said Cher. “And no harvesting piss from Nana, okay?”
“Yeah, I don’t do that any more.”
Harvesting piss? Adam mouthed, to himself. What fresh hell was this?
There is love in the air as Adam/Bunny and Ryan continue their wonderful second chances romance. Stephen and Hu are a fab work in progress, and Helena lets her freak flag fly… sans Molly. Good for you, girl. Justin realises for the first time that he finds comfort in connection and wants to be part of something special. He gets another chance to be with Ryan and Adam/Bunny. Is this book a conventional romance? Hello? I often have three names in FuBar reviews when talking about two people, and sometimes four for three. No. It’s not conventional. Halle-fucking-loo for that.
I also want to add a reader advisory. Jess Whitecroft writes romcom, she writes satirical comedy, nothing is sacred (thank goodness) and anything and everything is meant to be zany. Funny. Sometimes salient, making points using her creative artform. It’s also fiction and it includes drugs, produce up the arse, down and dirty sex – the filthiest kind – and all points in between. For example, if you aren’t a fan of religion being mentioned anywhere in the same vicinity as the word cunt then, seriously, give this book a wide berth. I have no problems with it but be aware of your own reading likes. I love intelligent, creative and a sometimes subversive use of reality spun within fiction. This book is funny but you can take more out of it if you choose. Come for the smut, stay for the sheer entertainment, and the fundamental read.
This series is an absolute and utter favourite of mine. I’m nervous whenever I go in because I love this world and these characters – I take favourite characters very seriously. While this is partially Justin’s story, to a degree, it’s really a full-on FuBar Christmas-y, holiday tale and experience. A zany and sometimes touching reader immersion. You can read it as a standalone but I suggest starting at the beginning with All That Drag then Making Magic because, while Jess Whitecroft reminds the reader of prior situations, I honestly think being there from the start is way better. Let’s face it, the piss jokes aren’t the same without having experienced it, Justin needs to show you who he is, and there can never be enough Bunny Boyle.
This is one funny series, full of drag humour and some social commentary. Historically, they go hand-in-hand and Jess Whitecroft captures the essence of drag quite nicely. There is love, a lot of love, understanding, friendship, and there’s backstabbing and bitchiness – yasss, queen – and it can be, and is, wholly filthy. Because this book is well written with so much love and care given the characters, and because Seven Deadly Queens is so delightfully delicious, look at that cover, because Jess Whitecroft is one fantastic writer – 5 Stars!