Book Reviews

Fate by Rob Rosen at JMS Books

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Multiple Partners / Romance / Humor/Comedy
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 29-December-2021

Book Blurb

Eddie is in love. The problem is, Eddie’s in love with four men ... four men simultaneously, that is. But who does Eddie love more? And can the heart feel for that many men equally? Ah, but it does have four chambers, so four seems the most logical choice ... at least, of course, to Eddie.

Paula is Eddie’s famous mom. One by one, each of his lovers comes to work for her, their lives so connected that if one of them itches, another one scratches. But who will wind up with whom in this hysterically funny tale of life and love and friendship? In the end, it’s up to fate to decide what none of them could possibly have seen coming.



First edition published by MLR Press, November 2015.


Book Review

‘Fate’, or rather its author, Rob Rosen, takes most of the key elements and conventions of gay romance and turns them all on their head while providing me with a hilarious tale that is firmly tongue-in cheek at all times. This novel showcases humor at its best in the form of a great coming of age romp where the journey is more important than the end goal. And what a journey it is! It practically starts with Eddie’s birth, at least the way he tells it, and lasts all the way through his teenage years and college. Expect to be surprised, possibly shocked or taken aback, but always make sure you’re ready to laugh. I mean it – no drinks while you’re reading this book. It’s good training for your abs and a great workout for your sense of humor.

Eddie tells this story in first person, and it sounds as though he is talking to a friend of his. His best friend Brian is with him almost from birth, but they get separated at age seven after one very memorable kiss good-bye. The brief meeting at age sixteen is more than awkward – including the kiss, but then, everything is slightly weird at that age. As Eddie begins to realize he is gay and believes he may be in love with Brian, other boys start appearing in his life. His college roommate, Curtis, who is gay but of the opinion they need to be friends only because he doesn’t want to risk needing to find a different roommate. Then there is Aaron, Curtis’s eventual boyfriend whom Eddie doesn’t like initially, but then falls in love with. When Brian (who isn’t gay but loves Eddie) comes for a short visit he brings Trevor, who wants to date Eddie; then Eddie falls for him too. And, of course, there is Brian all along.

Chaos ensues. Cheating left right and center, except is it cheating when everyone knows what everyone else is doing? This part is like a soap opera version of gay college, and if I had tried to take it seriously I’d have hated the book. Seeing as I took it to be a parody – it really was too over the top to be serious – I leaned back and enjoyed myself. Eddie is in a quandary about whom he should really love, what with a grand total of four men to chose from. But as often happens, eventually a solution presents itself, and no, I am not telling. Suffice it to say, it was a surprise, to both Eddie and me, and though a little less funny than the rest of the book, there was still lots of humor with Eddie’s “final lover”. It is just that kind of a story.

If you like Rob Rosen’s sense of humor, if you’re ready to forget everything you ever learned about the “rules of gay romance”, and if you’re looking for a read that is as hilariously funny as it is totally over the top, then you will probably enjoy this novel.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. The first edition of this book was provided by the author for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 74976 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 29-December-2021
Price $4.99 ebook
Buy Link