Boys come first

Aaron Foley

Book - 2022

"After a devastating layoff and sudden breakup, Dominick Gibson flees his life in NYC to try and get back on track in his hometown of Detroit. His one objective-exit the dating pool ASAP and get married by thirty-five. The deadline's approaching fast. Dominick reunites with his best friend, Troy, and meets Remy, a successful real estate agent who's got relationship problems of his own. And when a high-stakes deal threatens to blow up their friendship, the three men have to learn h...ow to navigate life's pitfalls as well as a city that's changing overnight."--Book cover

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Subjects
Genres
LGBTQ+ fiction
Queer fiction
Romance fiction
Gay fiction
Novels
Published
Cleveland, Ohio : Belt Publishing [2022]
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
301 pages ; 23 cm
ISBN
1953368255
9781953368256
Main Author
Aaron Foley (author)
Review by Library Journal Reviews

DEBUT Nonfiction author Foley (How To Live in Detroit Without Being a Jackass) spares no detail in this fiction debut set in the Motor City, including depictions of sexual relationships. Dominick has moved back to Detroit from New York after going through a breakup and losing his job. Troy is a teacher whose school may be closing. Remy, or Mr. Detroit, is a realtor in charge of converting the school property into a series of studio apartments. The three men are friends who are navigating being Black and gay in Detroit and coping with the way in which changes in the city affect their friendship (for instance, Remy is concealing the truth about the school from Troy). Foley creates a rich setting and strong characters. Each chapter shifts perspectives among the three men; Dominick's and Troy's chapters are written in third person, while Remy's is written in the first to show his strong sense of self. VERDICT Readers who enjoy character-driven romance, especially LGBTQ+ fiction, will appreciate this book. Some may be put off by the explicit sexual content, but the plot and the strong characters should keep them turning pages.—Natalie Browning Copyright 2022 Library Journal.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Foley's sparkling debut novel (after the guidebook How to Live in Detroit Without Being a Jackass) follows a trio of Black gay male friends in Detroit as they grapple with love, work, and gentrification. Dominick Gibson returns home to Motor City after two setbacks in the Big Apple—losing his job and finding his boyfriend cheating on him. He reconnects with his best friend Troy Clements, a teacher, and meets Troy's bestie, Remy Patton, a real estate agent. As Dominick reacquaints himself with his native city, the guys observe the differences between "Old and New Detroit," talk about code-switching, and wonder if they can have healthy, stable relationships. Troy's boyfriend, Roderick, is abusive, and Remy is imagining a future with Roland, his long-distance "situationship." In contrast, Dominick has a series of awkward, unsatisfying hookups. Meanwhile, a real estate deal Remy is involved with that would result in Troy's school being torn down causes a rift between the friends. But it's Remy's soul-searching that takes center stage, as he weighs his desire for a meaningful relationship with a need for self-fulfillment, all the while carrying the burdens of his sexual and racial identity. Foley's love for his city and his engaging characters shines through, and his novel is funny, naughty, and comforting. This auspicious debut will leave readers eager for more. (May) Copyright 2022 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Three Black, gay, Millennial men search for love and professional success in Detroit while navigating real friendships, Grindr hookups and family drama in the debut novel from the author of How to Live in Detroit without Being a Jackass. Original.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

This hilarious, touching debut novel by Aaron Foley, author of How to Live in Detroit Without Being a Jackass, follows three Black gay millennial men looking for love, friendship, and professional success in the Motor City. Suddenly jobless and single after a devastating layoff and a breakup with his cheating ex, advertising copywriter Dominick Gibson flees his life in Hell's Kitchen to try and get back on track in his hometown of Detroit. He’s got one objective — exit the shallow dating pool ASAP and get married by thirty-five — and the deadline’s approaching fast.Meanwhile, Dom's best friend, Troy Clements, an idealistic teacher who never left Michigan, finds himself at odds with all the men in his life: a troubled boyfriend he's desperate to hold onto, a perpetually dissatisfied father, and his other friend, Remy Patton. Remy, a rags-to-riches real estate agent known as “Mr. Detroit,” has his own problems — namely choosing between making it work with a long-distance lover or settling for a local Mr. Right Now who’s not quite Mr. Right. And when a high-stakes real estate deal threatens to blow up his friendship with Troy, the three men have to figure out how to navigate the pitfalls of friendship and a city that seems to be changing overnight.Full of unforgettable characters, Boys Come First is about the trials and tribulations of real friendship, but also about the highlights and hiccups —late nights at the wine bar, awkward Grindr hookups, workplace microaggressions, situationships, frenemies, family drama, and of course, the group chat — that define Black, gay, millennial life in today’s Detroit.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

This hilarious, touching debut novel by Aaron Foley, author of How to Live in Detroit Without Being a Jackass, follows three Black gay millennial men looking for love, friendship, and professional success in the Motor City.