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Triple Sec sizzles 

One part flaming sex scenes, two parts adult language

Bartender hands making an old-fashioned cocktail, blowing dust off the orange garnish on the glass at the wooden bar counter in a New York night club
triple sec cover

Title

Triple Sec

Author(s)

TJ Alexander

Genre

Erotica | Sapphic Fiction

If you’re craving a poly cocktail this summer, wrap your thirsty fingers around this sultry, sapphic novel by TJ Alexander (they/them). TRIPLE SEC, the author’s fourth published novel, is a twisty mélange of romantic intrigue with a splash of professional hijinx sipped from a heartwarming Nick and Nora coupe glass.

Recently divorced Mel, a stuck-in-a-rut bartender, is in the middle of her shift when Bebe, the high-powered lawyer provocateur, wends her way into her bar. With sex appeal in droves, Bebe gets to the point with Mel: she’s a married, polyamorous lesbian who wants Mel to serve her up more than just creative concoctions. Unbeknownst to Mel, however, is that she and Bebe have more in common than superficial allure.

Mel plunges enthusiastically into this pool of multiple sex partners; however, guilt about dating a married woman soon surfaces. You don’t need an open marriage to love this book, just an open mind. You should also set aside misgivings about polyamorous/non-monogamous relationships to pay attention to the developing plot. In short, it’s a delightful love story that develops between three diametrically contrasting characters set in the world of New York City’s fancy mixology scene.

Alexander’s mix of protagonists includes a delightful cast of queer characters not often represented in other sapphic books, much less in general fiction. The publishing community could use more authors like Alexander to inject much-needed LGBTQIA+ diversity, equity, and inclusivity into literature today.

Although I enjoyed the novel, my critique is mainly with the prose. Alexander’s writing style is verbose and unpolished, especially when illustrating the sex scenes; I could have done it without the tawdry language. Also, a few chapters seemed underdeveloped, even rushed.

ARC review thanks to Atria Books and NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

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About the author(s).

TJ Alexander is a critically acclaimed author who writes about queer love. Originally from Florida, they received their MA in writing and publishing from Emerson College in Boston. They live in New York City with their wife and various houseplants.

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