THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK | ADAM BRADY | BOOK REVIEW

Please enjoy our third book review and the first review from new Kernel, Paul Fellows. Paul and I have been friends for close on a quarter century, we used to tear tickets together and scoop choc tops at Hoyts Warringah Mall back in the 90s when we were much slimmer and definite model material :). We have always kept in touch and for a while Paul got onto the Orble network which is where Salty Popcorn commenced. Paul is an expert in Pop Music – seriously he knows it all. Test him!! His blog on Orble was called POP IS NOT DEAD and was all things pop music. He is also one of my only gay friends, as a gay hermit, this is important to me 🙂 He is more involved in the culture than me and opens my eyes to more cool things gay – and so I present to you all Paul’s review of THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK: A MEMOIR. It is originally self published via CreateSpace and you can stalk author Adam Brady at his impressive blog HERE. All the best……….JK.

 

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THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK | ADAM BRADY | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW | BOOK COVER

 

REVIEW BY PAUL FELLOWS

We’ve all got dating horror stories. Some more than others. It’s what we do with them that makes all the difference. Some people choose to forget they even happened, while others, like my friends and I, like to share them with each other. We almost try to outdo the other with dates gone horribly wrong, ensuring hours of hilarity. If you’re Adam Brady, well, you outdo us all and you write about them for all of the world to see!

THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK is Adam’s debut memoir about his return to single life at the end of a long-term relationship. Adam talks about how he changed cities and had to learn how to ‘date’ again via dating websites and mobile phone apps that allow you to find a hook up just around the corner.

Adam explains, “Almost thirty, I relocated from Adelaide to Melbourne after a dramatic relationship break-up. Yearning for a fresh start, I endeavoured my career that blossomed, however searching for love quickly wilted. Not realising how hard it would be to jump back onto the dating bandwagon, I endured one apocalyptic flop to another in my search for my so-called ‘perfect’ match. A gay man in this world can be challenging enough; trying to find the perfect catch in a small pond made the dating world even more arduous. Trying to find myself and search inwards while in a new city was an even scarier ride. Overwhelmed by what I thought would be a simple fresh start, it became an epic let down and my new journey took me along the bumpy road. Online dating, Grindr or even finding a guy at the supermarket, proved to be a challenging monopoly to finding ‘The One.’”

 

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THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK | ADAM BRADY | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW

 

Right from the get-go Adam allows us a no-holds barred look into his life, warts and all. Well, shit and all, as the first page of chapter one hilariously describes the day he shat his pants as he hurried home, weighed down with grocery bags (and who hasn’t had one of those moments where you are rushing home, absolutely busting and you think “Oh God! I’m not going to make it!”).

Adam shares his tales of hook-ups with cute pizza delivery boys, flirty sales assistants, holiday fun with two friends who don’t realise that he’s seeing the other one, running out on hook ups after half an hour and the inevitable relationships with boys that were so wrong even blind Freddy could see it. I almost had moments of wanting to scream at the book “What are you doing with this loser?? He’s totally not right for you!!!”

It is not all dating fun and games though as Adam reflects on the sexual abuse he endured as an 11 year old at the hands of an older neighbour  and the “dramatic relationship break-up” that Adam mentioned, actually ends with him in a coma due to a suicide attempt. Told with brutal honesty, these heart breaking events allow the author to take us to rock bottom with him so that we can experience his journey of picking up his life and bravely starting again. And as with every hero in any story we are fighting alongside him every step of the way. Sure this time it’s through boozy nights in bars and awful hook-ups, but that’s beside the point. We want him to succeed in his quest to find his prince!

 

ADAM BRADY AUTHOR IMAGE
THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK | ADAM BRADY | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW | ADAM BRADY

 

I always find it very brave of someone to write about their life and to put it out into the public domain, especially when it involves some of the harsher experiences Adam writes about. It made me wonder what his friends think of these personal stories and what do his family think of these confessions? Fortunately the very lovely Adam Brady was able to answer my questions:

“My friends and family were very supportive and also proud that I could be as honest as I was and reveal every layer that left me open to some vulnerability. They knew I was being brave and gave me the thumbs up.”

Did he ever think about not putting something in the book?

“All the time! There were times I pondered perhaps I went a little too far and edited, then re-edited but remained as honest and candid as possible. Often I thought, “I just wrote that! Better out than in.” I did not want to hold back, even if it meant truly exposing myself, naked to the truth of what I had to say. I opened myself up considerably, trying to become thick-skinned, vulnerable to the criticism for being so open. As much as portions were difficult to put to paper emotionally, it was also cathartic to get things out in the open, especially things I could never say before. I’m just one person who experienced everything I did but I knew many others could relate to it. I wanted to be upmost connected to my readers.”

 

THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK ADAM BRADY IMAGE
THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK | ADAM BRADY | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW

 

And relate I did. I couldn’t help but think of my dating life and how fun I thought it was going to be….and how painfully awkward it really was. Whether you’re gay, straight or everything in between, we’ve all experienced the ups and downs of dating and we can all see something of ourselves in Adam’s story.

Adam Brady does for single gay life in Australia what Candace Bushnell did for single women in New York City in the 90s and like ‘Sex and the City’ before it, THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK is a hilarious and honest look at single gay life as it is now and how it has changed over the last few years. But it’s more than that, it’s the story of a man looking for love, the places he has come from and the adventures he has along the way.

THE NEEDLE IN THE GAYSTACK is available on Kindle, through online bookstores Booktopia, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Angus & Robertson plus many more. It’s also available through The Bookshop Darlinghurst (my favourite bookshop!) and by special order through your local book store.

You can buy it right HERE

A big thanks to Adam Brady for taking the time to answer my questions.

 

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