M/M That Might Annoy You
Note: The authors listed here may have written books with slash content that wouldn't end up on this page. Or they may not. This page isn't a statement on everything the author has written, just on the books mentioned here.
In Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold, weíre briefly introduced to Vorrutyer, a homosexual or bi villain so over the top that the only way to make him worse is to have him twirl his mustache. Heís evil and cruel but often too fastidious (or limp-wristed?) to do his own dirty work. It turns out that Aral Vorkosigan had a relationship with him in the past, but Aralís much better now and has returned to women. I donít mind that Barryaran society sees m/m relationships as wrong, as Barrayar makes clear when someone tries to use that past relationship to drive a wedge between Cordelia and Aral, but the way the narrative hedges the bet by making Aralís one same-sex fling be a psychotic sadist didnít make me happy. The fact that Cordeliaís Betan background makes her more open-minded doesnít help enough.
Elizabeth A. Lynnís The Sardonyx Net is well-written enough that it made me feel empathy for slavers even as it showed their delusions and arrogance, though it all fell apart for me at the end, but its presentation of Zed and Michelís lusts earns the book an entry here. Zed loves his sister in a sexual way but mostly takes out his frustration at not being able to have her by deriving sexual pleasure from torturing and breaking men. Ditto for Michel. We get to see the mess Zed made of Danaís mind through the whole novel. The only semi-positive depiction to balance that would be a one-paragraph mention of Danaís relations with Russell, the only man heíd ever had sex with, but even there it sounds like Russell wore him down into agreeing to it, though he ended up enjoying it.
Katharine Kerrís long-running series of Deverry/the Westlands/Dragon Mage involves a group of characters whose fates intertwine endlessly through several lives. Although characters who are lovers in one life may both be men or both be women in the next, thereís no slash in this series that way. However, Darkspell (the authorís definitive edition) makes this list for the plotline involving Sarcyn, Alastyr, and Camdel. While sex has been shown as a source of magical power in other novels in the series, this is the only book which shows rape being used for the same purpose, and itís male/male rape. This triad is also the only major showing of a male/male relationship in the series, since Rhodryís one off-page sex scene with Evandar barely counts. (Breakdown of Evandar/Rhodry: Non-human Evandar likes and is intrigued by Rhodry, Rhodry finally says, What not?, they have sex off-page, it's never mentioned again and nothing comes of it.) Sarcyn repeatedly rapes the kidnapped Camdel for dark power, while Camdel enjoys some of the physical aspects of it and hates himself for it, his mind breaking over the course of his captivity. Sarcyn was initiated into this by being raped in the same fashion by his own master, Alastyr. Eventually Sarcyn starts to feel a kind of love or pity for Camdel and sees that as weakness.