“My Adventure with Tom Sawyer” by Jameson Currier from Best Gay Romance 2014 (Cleis Press)
Full disclosure: I have a story in this anthology.
Having just re-read Steve Berman’s “Finn’s Night” in Trysts: A Triskaidecollection of Queer and Weird Stories for this blog, I was expecting this to be another twist-on-a-classic, but that was not the case.
The main character is a big city dweller travelling to the countryside at the behest of a friend, to get some much needed rest following a string of failed relationships and illnesses/injuries. This contemporary tale looks at the cautious optimism of being attracted to someone new and trying to discern whether or not it’s mutual. Due to the dichotomy of the protagonist and the setting there’s a lot of humor to be mined, and the author makes great use of that opportunity. Overall, though, this is a sweet, contemplative, and romantic modern story.