Sutphin Boulevard (Five Boroughs #1) by Santino Hassell (4.5 Stars)

Michael Rodriguez and Nunzio Medici have been best friends forever, but things are about to change. Unfortunately, Michael has a lot of personal demons to address before he can find happiness with Nunzio. Watching Michael’s life fall apart, complicated by alcohol and drugs, was not pleasant, but somehow the author kept the story from becoming extremely depressing.

Michael and Nunzio were so good together in more ways than one. I liked that they were both teachers and found the school stories interesting. I enjoyed their interactions, both as best friends, and as two people just starting to understand how much they loved each other.

Solid writing clinched this as a page-turner which had me immediately buying the next one in the series.



Michael Rodriguez and Nunzio Medici have been friends for two decades. From escaping their dysfunctional families in the working-class neighborhood of South Jamaica, Queens to teaching in one of the city’s most queer friendly schools in Brooklyn, the two men have shared everything. Or so they thought until a sweltering night of dancing leads to an unexpected encounter that forever changes their friendship.

Now, casual touches and lingering looks are packed with sexual tension, and Michael can’t forget the feel of his best friend’s hands on him. Once problems rear up at work and home, Michael finds himself seeking constant escape in the effortless intimacy and mind-blowing sex he has with Nunzio. But things don’t stay easy for long.

When Michael’s world begins to crumble in a sea of tragedy and complications, he knows he has to make a choice: find solace in a path of self-destruction or accept the love of the man who has been by his side for twenty years.


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