RELEASE DAY- DUAL REVIEW: Flawless – J Scott Coatsworth

Flawless Book Cover Flawless
J Scott Coatsworth
Humorous Science Fiction, Short Reads, LGBTQ Science Fiction
Water Dragon Publishing
May 10, 2024

In Space, No One Can Hear You Sing …

Grayson Eck's life is a drag, in all the best possible ways. He's perfectly happy working in the belt alone as a wildcatter, prospecting asteroids by … well, not exactly by day.

At night, he transforms into the Inner System's most famous Valeriana Storm — a secret identity that even his closest friends and family don't know about.

When someone tries to steal one of Greyson's mining scores, he has half a mind to just toss the guy off his rock and into open space. But that all changes when he discovers the stranger's identity — and that he knows Greyson's secret.

Now he's being chased by a pirate, and has to decide what to do with the apparent thief while also putting on his show.

What's a space drag queen to do?


DUAL Review by Ulysses Dietz

A fully developed sci-fi story, “Flawless” has everything I want in a novel except the length. It doesn’t feel skimpy, and it lacks nothing.

A lone space-prospector, mining platinum on asteroids, finds an unconscious (but alive) stranger tethered to his latest pick-up. He reluctantly rescues the young man, who may or may not have been trying to steal his ore, and discovers something that changes his life dramatically.

Leave to Scott Coatsworth to involve spaceships and drag performance in the 23rd century. There is plenty of cool sci-fi detail to make the story interesting from that perspective; but then there’s the whole drag element that I don’t want to discuss because it is both surprising and surprisingly powerful. Coatsworth has written a strong emotional thread through this story—a story of loss and loneliness that makes Grayson Eck, the central character, multi-faceted and appealing.

So, it manages to be funny and touching and weird all at the same time, a surprisingly comforting vision of a sci-fi future.

DUAL Review By Linda Tonis

This was a very short story that held my interest from the first page to the last. A story about a wildcatter and the dangers he faces. Captain Grayson Eck was mining for platinum and ready to head home when suddenly the transfer of platinum stopped leaving him no choice but to go back to the mine and find the problem.

What he finds is a young man lying unconscious near his claim. Sure, the kid was a pirate. He had to clear everything to start things back up then he had to get the kid back to his ship, all that nearly cost him his life. When he manages to make things right, he finally returns to the ship and finds the young man in his kitchen cooking. After eating the kid reveals he is his son. Grayson is gay and never ever slept with a woman, but unfortunately, drinking till he was bleary eyed he did just that and it seems one time was all it took.

It turns out that the girl he slept with is now the Martian President and now he has a wildcatter for a father. Ferris knows Grayson’s secret, a secret he has kept from everyone except it seems Ferris and his mother and it was a surprise. As Grayson begins to accept having a son pirates approach the ship better equipped than Grayson to do damage. It takes smarts not power to come out a winner.

This was a wonderful story about a man looking at his life and deciding if it is the life he wants. He finds himself wanting to know his son and must decide if continuing with his dangerous lifestyle is suitable for a father wanting to spend time with a son, he never knew he had.

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