- ASIN: B09VTFQ42P
- Publisher: Refractions Books (March 16, 2022)
- Publication date: March 16, 2022
- Language: English
- Print length: 290 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN: 1999241827
- Genre: LGBTQ+ Humorous Fiction
The BookViral Review:
A riotous, candy-coloured LGBTQ2 satire, Sotto gives his readers a novel that doesn’t insult their intelligence whilst unapologetically making a play for their emotions.
Perfectly pitched, scoring big laughs, heart-felt moments, and even tears Sotto crushes it right out the gate with a handle on exactly how seriously to take his characters. Skewering a few stereotypes, and in doing so managing to be inclusive and progressive, without being precious about anything or sacrificing one iota of humour.
Quick to relax into a stream of clever repartee and amusing situations, it’s so easy to get swept up in The Moonballer’s pace and pleasures, that it would be almost churlish to resist its charms and infectious comic gusto as Sotto brings his “wanna-be-downtown suburb of Torpedo Valley” and queer tennis organization to life.
Like most satires The Moonballers is less concerned with plot (though excellent) than it is about giving us a feeling for the society its characters inhabit and to this mixture, Sotto adds the conflict between straight and gay. There’s only one of the former in Khalid Adam but through him, Sotto argues that you have a choice. You can accept your social position, race, sexuality or prejudices as absolutes, and live entirely inside them. Or you can look out the window, and maybe even have the courage to walk out the door.
But for this to work a novel like The Moonballers lives or dies with its characters and here Sotto gives us a sublime cast that all but jumps off the page in their campiness. The most expansive of them being Stefan “Stephi” Porshe, Butterball Deveraux and Ernest Law who between them deliver a litany of carefully worked one-liners whilst reminding us that being true to yourself often comes with a modicum of struggle and sorrow.
Putting its own truth above the fear of possibly offending its readers The Moonballers is aimed primarily at a middle-American LGBTQ2 community but its audience is significantly wider as Sotto also reminds us that tolerance continues to gain a foothold in a largely intolerant world.
The Moonballers proves a superb introduction to Sotto’s distinctive brand of LGBTQ fiction and is unreservedly recommended!