Paperback: 174 pages
Publisher: Lethe Press (August 10, 2013)
Product Dimensions: 0.4 x 5.4 x 8.4 inches
Shades of Gay
It was love at first sight when Daniel and Marc met but through the years that same love became tainted. Daniel, an alcoholic and sex addict, has found himself unable to resist the lure of other men. When Marc discovers his infidelity, he leaves Daniel who begins a dark descent into sexual tryst after tryst.
Shades of Gay reveals the myriad desires a lost man can permit his body and soul to revel in despite the pain they bring. But can such fleeting moments of pleasure bring meaning to life? Will Daniel realize the love he had with mark is worth more than the lust and degradation that leaves the spirit empty and wanting?
Author David Clarke is a retired social worker, a recovering alcoholic, and recovering sex addict. He has poured his years of intense experiences into his first novel, Shades of Gay. David found spirituality as a way to help fill the needs that could not be satisfied through his addictions. He is socially-minded and wrote this book as a way to share the pain of addiction through the protagonist, who searches outside of himself for that which can only be found within.
"David Clarke's "Shades of Gay" is a compelling look into what it means to be a prisoner to sexual addiction. His very frank and open documentation of Daniel's sexual trysts enlighten readers on the extent one will go to to satisfy their sexual cravings and how the internal desire is never satisfied; jeopardizing all that is near and dear to them just for the momentary thrill of an anonymous sexual encounter. Many readers will see themselves in Daniel, myself included, at a point in their lives, during which the focus was on "getting off" and nothing else, thus deferring all sense of reason to another later time in one's life."
James R. Koury,
Diversity Rules Magazine
"Be careful. From the second Shades of Gay begins, the book will seize you in its grip! As hard as you try, you won’t be able to put it down! You will experience addiction first hand.
Taking place during the 1980’s, Shades of Gay is about Daniel, a young man who has strong needs that can’t be satisfied. On the surface his life seems to have the ingredients for happiness: he shares a home with his partner Marc who is kind and loving; he has a job as a psychiatric social worker that renders him a steady paycheck; he has nice friends and relatives, and a great dog, Whiskey. Even so, an entity within Daniel’s psyche relentlessly insists he participate in a secret life: a life that involves anonymous, unprotected gay sexual encounters along with excessive alcohol abuse and drug consumption. The entity’s name--Addiction.
Daniel’s predicament is an allegory for many of us who are addicted. We recognize the seductive pattern that uncoils when low self-esteem, emotional pain or a feeling of powerlessness confront us with the cold, naked demands of life. It is at those particular times Addiction whispers its hypnotic suggestions inside the brain: “Nobody has to know…This will make the pain go away… It won’t hurt.” We surrender to its spell. As the author David Clarke so exquisitely and explicitly details, that spell can seem splendid for the short time it lasts.
But acting out addictions, as Daniel discovers, has serious side effects. He gets caught in embarrassing lies and his beloved Marc leaves. As he awakens to the pain and disappointment his actions have on those who are important to him, including himself, he begins a process of profound transformation.
Shades of Gay concludes after Daniel devotes nearly a full year to recovery. His efforts leave the reader tentatively optimistic. Will Daniel, with the support of others, purge Addiction from his psyche? Will he be able to successfully revive his relationship with Marc? We need a sequel to the story. What happens next?"
"Shades of Gay" by David Clarke, is a well written and compelling book about one mans' struggle with sexual addiction. The story follows the protagonist , Daniel, through his tribulations with this oft misunderstood addiction. Daniels' sexual compulsions are almost palpable. As Daniel increasingly yields to his addiction, we can feel ourselves swimming with him in his vast sea of disillusionment. His life becomes increasingly disarrayed. Losing himself in his erotic exploits, Daniels' addiction ultimately becomes the driving force in his life, putting both him, and his relationship with the love of his life, Marc, at risk. Compounding Daniels' distress is his use of alcohol as a panacea. Since many people have no real concept of just what sexual addiction is, I think this book will be not only absorbing, but enlightening as well. Certainly a must read for anyone dealing with this problem, or seeking to understand this addiction"