Book Reviews

Public Affair (Queens Crescent) by Kristian Parker

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Interracial / Romance
Reviewed by Bob-O-Link on 15-September-2023

Book Blurb

London is in the grip of a heatwave, but something else is causing Nihal Varma’s temperature to skyrocket.

The CEO of a PR agency, he’s used to dealing with glamourous and beautiful people. He’s woken up with a lot of them too.

Yet when Carl Carrington, MP and candidate for leader of the opposition, walks into his office, Nihal finds himself a bag of nerves. And that never happens. He soon discovers that not only is Carl stunning to look at, he radiates decency. In Nihal’s world, that’s a very rare commodity.

When Carl insists on working with Nihal only, he’s entranced. Could this MP be interested in a man whose past is…chequered, to say the least? Nihal ‘I don’t do relationships’ Varma really hopes so. Even if getting involved with a client, especially such a high-profile one, is not just crazy. It’s insane.

But for once Nihal is out of control and that makes a man do very strange things…


Book Review

For those who have read one or more of the first three books set on London’s Queen’s Crescent, they know this is an upscale, private row of townhouses, occupied by very individualist tenants. As with the prior installments, the residents are gay or at least bent towards tolerance. Their stories are presented apace, with sufficient exploration of romance and sexual activity. Forewarning: author Parker’s style will surely bring to mind old standard tales, particularly for readers who can still remember serialized fiction – but who have not yet suffered withered acuity. This set of stories sharply present into our ken current Londoners, sets them romantically and politically at each other. The main characters, having birthed an intimate relationship then see it precariously endangered. Risk leads to the determined success of goodness, all with slapstick pizzazz suitable for Marxian (Groucho, not Karl).


Nihal Varma is a successful public relations professional. A gay man, his sexual history has been active, though not happily successful. “The ever-familiar cloud of emptiness swept over him. Fun was enough for him. It had to be.” He and his firm are engaged by Carl Carrington, seeking to be the minority leader in parliament. Carl is openly gay, though not making it a major public issue. There is an immediate reaction by Nihal, picturing Carl’s big worker’s hands running over every part of his body. Obviously there will be feeling and sex. There is also much bright repartee, belying the cold British image. Clever is the author’s métier. Discussing a delay in preparing a new public image, Nihal’s aide notes to Carl: “I’m sure your back, sac, and crack wax can wait.”


As the attraction between Nihal and Carl is immediate, light flirting becomes quite patent. It is intertwined with English politics and press, becoming public and very personal. Oh, the consummate professionals, they do consummate, well and often! Being, at heart, a fable, the author has provided us with a nearly wicked stepsister type and a totally negative political competitor. No shortage of stereotypes here.


As with earlier tales of Queen’s Crescent residents, this is also a hoot!




DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by the author via GRRT for the purpose of a review.


Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 216 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 16-August-2023
Price $5.12 ebook, $11.11 paperback
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