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"The City of Lovely Brothers" is a family saga, the history of Caladelphia Ranch, jointly owned by four brothers, Calvin, Caleb, Calhoun and Caliban Caldwell and how it grew and prospered, and how rivalry between the brothers led to its breaking up and decline. As the story evolves, it focuses on the love affair between the youngest brother, Caliban, who is lame, and Nick,"The City of Lovely Brothers" is a family saga, the history of Caladelphia Ranch, jointly owned by four brothers, Calvin, Caleb, Calhoun and Caliban Caldwell and how it grew and prospered, and how rivalry between the brothers led to its breaking up and decline. As the story evolves, it focuses on the love affair between the youngest brother, Caliban, who is lame, and Nick, one of their ranch hands, and how their relationship set the stage for the already open feud to explode and ultimately caused the demise of the ranch....

Title : The City of Lovely Brothers
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781920468668
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 580 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The City of Lovely Brothers Reviews

  • SueM
    2018-12-25 02:22

    4.5 starsThis is an amazing novel, although I suspect that it will not be for everyone. This is a story that follows four brothers over the course of their lives - partly told as if it were a biography, with notes from the biographer, and partly told as if the reader is watching everything unfold as it happened. The novels starts much as a biography starts, but after the four brothers and their ranch is introduced to the reader, it changes perspective to that of a story being told in the third person POV. We follow the brothers, particularly the youngest, Caliban, as they grow up and become men, fall in love, marry, have children, etc, by dipping in and out of scenes of their lives. These scenes are interspersed by sections of notes written by the biographer, explaining how material and information was sourced, until one almost forgets that the novel is, in fact, fiction. This style certainly took me a while to get used to, but once I did, I was swept away by the family saga, with all their ups and downs, and became very attached to Caliban, his 'best friend' Nick, and to Jake, Caliban's nephew who accepted both men easily, in a time when homosexuality was almost a crime. Yes, there is a romance told within this 'biographical' saga, but it is one seen from a remove, even if it's with an affectionate eye. Mostly, however, it is a tale of a family, a family that clearly illustrates that love is the true key to happiness.

  • Erica Pike
    2019-01-13 06:59

    Christ this was a good book. I went into it not entire sure I'd like it since it's about the lives of all four brothers and their families, following them from adolescence/childhood to death. Caliban, who is gay, is the main hero of this story, but I couldn't imagine it would be fun to read about the others. Since I'd promised a friend I'd read it, I picked up that nearly 600 page book and started. I was enthralled every time I picked it up to read. I didn't have time to read it in one go (I could never read 600 pages in one go anyway!), but every time I picked it up again I sank back into the story from the first sentence. No adjustment/what-happened-earlier-? problems. It's been a long time since I've actually itched to read more and sighed when I had to put it down. I even found myself sneaking into my bedroom for some reading time while my little boys watched TV. I had never read an Anel Viz book before. I met him at GRL2012 and he seemed so poetic to me that I imagined his writing style to be literary. Very often, literary books bore me with their lengthy, flowery descriptions and long similes. I was happy to find that although Mr. Viz is literary, it is does not dwell on descriptions or slow the story down at all. He writes straight to the point, but the prose is flowing, and fun. Yes, I had so much fun reading this book. There aren't a lot of direct jokes or such (though there are some), but just reading about the Caldwell Ranch and its inhabitants was something I greatly enjoyed. Mr. Viz threw a couple of curve-balls, one so big that I feel like I must re-read the book from start to finish with new goggles on. He also drops hints here and there and blatantly gives away the ending of certain matters before we get to them. That didn't diminish the experience at all, which surprised me. He sometimes goes back and forth in time, but it was so masterfully done that it didn't confuse me for a minute.Each and every character in the book - even ones who only had a sentence or two during the whole book, had a unique personality. I feel like I've known each one of these people. I wanted to be there with them, smile and laugh with them, cry with them, fume with them, and even pull a gun on a couple of them (God, did I want to pull out that gun!). The story is set up so that there's a narrator in between who has found a diary and other documentation about the Caldwell brothers, as if they actually existed and the events really took place. I wish - I so wish that the narrator was actually Mr. Viz and that Caliban and Nick had existed. Their love story is so beautiful and I loved all of their interactions.I cried when Caleb confessed. I felt so bad for him. What he confessed had never occurred to me (but it's obvious now). For that reason, I'm going to have to check that book out of the library and read it again (once I've given other Icelanders a chance to read it first). Actually, I may have to buy this book in print, because it's a keeper that I want to read again and again.There was only one thing I felt wasn't solved by the end (and I swear, I can't think of anything else Mr. Viz didn't tie up). (view spoiler)[I wanted to actually hear that Calvin JR. in jail and find out if that slime of a lawyer got what he deserved! I wanted Logan and Brandon to get their land back. There was never any mentioning if they did. Logan got the rawest deal (of the ones that didn't deserve to get a raw deal): his future inheritance was tricked out of his mother's hands; HIS actual land was stolen; his dad shot himself; his mother went crazy; his brother-in-law was killed; and his brother moved away. So in the end, Logan stood behind with nothing but a new boyfriend - for which I was grateful or he'd have had nothing at all. (hide spoiler)]What I very much enjoyed was Calvin's and Calhoun's feud. I actually liked Calhoun's character and liked to see how he stood up to his brother - and how the other two sided with him (without directly saying so). The grumpiness of both older brothers had me snickering more than once. The female characters in the story were equally strong as the male characters - if not stronger. Darcy was the backbone of the family. That is very rare in m/m stories, so I must give Mr. Viz extra credits for that. While the men were out butting heads, the female stood back shaking theirs, exasperated that everyone couldn't just get along. It showed great strength in character to be able to be married to those men, and to often be able to control them (without them feeling that the women were in control). Darcy is probably the strongest female character I've ever read and I think she's probably very exemplary of a strong farmer's wife back in those days. She reminds me a little bit of my grandmother with her briskness and her no-nonsense/that's-life attitude. If you're wondering if this story is non-sexual - it isn't. There's quite a bit of m/m sex. I even learned a few new things. However, if there hadn't been any, or if it'd been behind closed doors, I would have enjoyed this story just as much. This is a story that will stay with me forever, so thank you, friend, for making me promise to read it.

  • Elisa Rolle
    2019-01-13 06:56

    It was a long run reading this novel, but one that I strongly recommend everyone to take. And with everyone I don’t mean only the fans of Gay Romance, but also the history lovers, and those who are, like me, fascinated by vintage “threads”.At almost 600 pages length, it tells the story of 4 brothers, from the end of the XIX century to the beginning of the XX century. There is a narrative voice, a fictional character who stumbles into the hand-written 8 journals of a former cowboy, Nick. Reading the journals the voice learns how Nick “fell in love with a cripple and lived happily ever after”; the nice coincidence is that the voice was used to live in the same town where most of the events happened and he didn’t know that most of the town landmarks’ name derived by the 4 brothers. Calvin, Calhoun, Caleb and Caliban owned an equal share of a ranch in Montana; in years the equal balance shifted, above all for the greediness of Calvin and the foul mood of Calhoun; among the brothers, the ones who were able to maintain a good relationship almost until the end were Caleb and Caliban, mostly since Caliban was a nice and friendly man who was unable to believe any of his brothers could really do bad.Caliban is the “cripple”; handsome and educated (as often happened at that time when you were no able to do manual work), he was the town teacher. Since he was part of the most prominent family of the village, Caliban was able to openly live with Nick without anyone questioning it. Of course they were no “open” about their relationship, Nick and Caliban were apparently best friends, and Nick was living with Caliban to help him due to his disability. For all his life Caliban was homosexual but he had never lived outside his home as an homosexual; when he started his relationship with Nick, he was so clueless about the possibility someone else could share his feelings, that Nick had to practically have him naked before he clued into the fact Nick was homosexual too. But once started, and once they were living together, they were everything for each other until death brought them apart. As much as Caliban and Nick were discreet outside their home, they were exactly the opposite inside, and everyone entering that house, and having the chance to spend a day with them, understood immediately their living arrangement.I like the approach the author had, a mix of historic record and romance novel; for this reason there is part of the novel that is more “detached”, like list of dates of birth, death, marriage, and part that is instead more personal, the love story between Nick and Caliban. I like to think the narrative voice is real, and that for this reason, when the story is more detached is due to the fact the voice is simply listing the info he found in some public source, and instead when it gets personal is since we are reading the novelization of Nick’s journals.The love story was wonderful, passionate and long, but I have one little complaint: considering Caliban’s disability, and the ordinary lifespan of the time, him living until almost 60 years old was a great achievement, and again, considering he met Nick when they were barely 20, it means they had almost 40 years to live together and happily (remember Nick’s word, “I fell in love with a cripple and lived happily ever after”), but at the end of the novel, the author let the reader knowing Nick died 32 years after Caliban, at the old age of 86… how was his life after Caliban’s death? How was he able to survive so long without his companion life and without any family he could call that? My heart is still grieving for him, even if I’m happy Caliban and him could have such a beautiful love story.http://www.amazon.com/dp/1456395289/?...

  • Trisha Harrington
    2019-01-06 05:20

    An amazing story that feels so real I actually thought it was a true story. The City of Lovely Brothers is a story that feels so real. It was a unique story. I felt so connected with the time and the characters through Anel Viz's writing style and amazing story telling ability. It was so real, I thought it might have been based on a true story. Not that it takes from the story in any way. I was totally in love with this story. It had an emotional depth that took my breath away.The story spans a lifetime. It goes through the life of the Caldwell brothers. It showed marriages, births, deaths and betrayal. I was so caught up with this book I read it in one sitting. I started in the morning and finished late that night. All 580 pages, which was almost too short for the story.All the brothers featured heavily in the story. But for me Caliban and Nick were the heart of the story. Their relationship lasted decades and their love never faltered. Nick was loyal to Caliban until the very end. Which to me said a lot about his character as a man. Their relationship was beautiful.Caliban was a character I never thought I would overly connect to. He was the good guy with seemingly no faults. But he was wonderful and someone I think people could learn from. The character was so compassionate and kind, it was refreshing and strange at the same time. I can't explain it.I actually think this book has something special that any person could in some way like. Some character will reach someone whether you hate them with a passion or love them to death. They all have a depth and a story with them. I loved how they were woven into the story and it made the novel brilliant.I highly recommend this novel to anyone who is brave enough to chance the length of the book. I think anyone would enjoy it.

  • Serena Yates
    2019-01-15 04:14

    I haven't read a family saga in a very long time, but I used to love them. Reading The City of Lovely Brothers reminded me of all the good ones I have ever come across while adding the more unusual angle of a gay couple as the main focus.The characters involved, mainly a group of five brothers of whom Caleb is the youngest, came to life to the point where I was yelling at them to stop being so stupid, stubborn or plain mean (mainly the eldest brother). Caleb suffered so much, a lot due to the callous treatment from his own family, that it brought tears to my eyes. He and Nick totally stole my heart and I hated that the story was "realistic" enough not to give them the ending I wanted.I really liked the somewhat factual style; in parts this book reads like a documentary of life at the end of the 19th century. This is a nice contrast with the lively characters and makes for a fascinating mix of fact and fiction which had me almost believe that this is a "real" family history.

  • Gerry Burnie
    2018-12-24 01:58

    I enjoy this type of family saga; especially if it involves interesting, colourful characters. In this regard, ”The City of Lovely Brothers” by Anel Viz [Silver Publishing, November 2010] has a full cast of them. The author’s approach is to conjure up a fictional city, “Caladelphia,” Montana, as though it actually existed. Moreover, by referring to its street maps, city limits and equally fictional landmarks—i.e. “Hokey Hill Mall,” he does a very convincing job of it, as well. It is also a clever way of introducing the Caldwell family, their history, and the four disparate brothers—Calvin, Caleb, Calhoun and Caliban. There is also a sister, Callie, who plays a supporting role to the others.Calvin, the oldest of the siblings, is a stern, humourless man who assumes the role of head of the Caldwell clan after both parents die. He fills this role quite well, too, and apart from being somewhat dictatorial he is a good manager; expanding the ranch until it is one of the largest outfit in the territory.Caleb is the next oldest, boisterous and a hard drinker—which ultimately contributes to his destruction.Calhoun is a strong personality in his own right. It is inevitable, therefore, that these two should clash in an extreme case of sibling rivalry; especially when Calvin undertakes to severely discipline him for impregnating a servant girl.Finally, Caliban is the baby of family blessed with good looks that are almost “Too pretty to be a man.” Moreover his good nature matches his looks, such that “No one could resist his laughing eyes and kind smile.”Part II of the story then goes on to trace the rising fortunes of the Caldwell ranch, later named Caladelphia—meaning “The City of the Cal Brothers.” But the Greek translation could also mean “pretty” or “lovely” brothers. Ergo, the title.Along the way a number of events transpire that are meaningful to the story. Needing a woman keep house, Calvin sets out on a quest to find a wife, and returns with one; a quite realistic touch, for it was often done that way without undue wonderment on anyone’s part.Secondly, Calvin administers a humiliating whipping on his fifteen-year-old brother, Calhoun, for impregnating a servant girl; causing a lifetime rift between the two. And, thirdly, Caliban is thrown from a horse; sustaining a hip fracture that is poorly treated by the local doctor. This necessitates a trip to the populated community of Billings, Montana, where he is properly treated but requires several months convalescence. The time is well spent, however, because he advances his education through reading; such that he becomes reasonably well read. His brother Caleb comes to Billings to escort Caliban home, and also to further his sex education—although nothing physical transpires between them.All of this is artfully woven together and advances the story at a pace that keeps the reader’s interest moving along. This pace continues as Caliban, concerned about how he might support himself when his hip gives out, decides to become a teacher. This necessitates a two-year absence from the ranch, and while in Laramie he is approached at least once by a man who is drawn to his beauty. However, Caliban rebuffs him.While he is away Caleb decides to marry, and Caliban decides to ask one of his stable hands, Nick, to share his remote Cabin. Their friendship had been growing quite close, and since they were both single it seemed like a practical thing to do. Calvin objects on the basis that Caliban would be fraternizing with an employee, but Calvin is overruled by his wife, Darcie. On his return, therefore, Caliban and Nick discover that they share more than just a cabin, and for the first time Caliban is in love.In Part III, Caliban and Nick are now a couple; albeit covertly, and the author has cleverly introduced a fictional diary that Nick has been maintaining since childhood. This gives their love story a certain aura of authenticity, and through their eyes we see the relationship between the other brothers deteriorating—particularly between Calhoun and Calvin. This situation is exacerbated as Calvin begins to subdivide the home-section of the ranch into a village-type development—which Calhoun criticizes as taking away from the ranch. In short, there is no middle ground for these two characters, and thereby the seeds of destruction of Caladelphia as a ranch are sown. There is much that can be favourably said about this story. It is cleverly conceived; it is well written; and the first and second parts move along quite nicely. However, in the third part the pace is burdened by superfluous detail that doesn’t seem to add anything to the story. Moreover it is frequently repetitious, giving the impression that the author has lost control of the narrative. Apart from these reservations, it remains a good read and is recommended on that basis. Three-and-one-half stars.

  • M. Kei
    2019-01-13 05:01

    Anel Viz’s saga of four brothers and their descendants, several of whom are gay, is a top notch piece of historical fiction with enough lovingly described sex to satisfy both fans of historical fiction and those who read for sensual pleasure. Narrated by an anonymous gay man who allegedly received the diaries of one of the main characters and who sought out the history of the family as a result, it gives an intimate view of how a family functions and then destroys itself. When the patriarch of the family dies, four brothers, including a very young Caliban, inherit the ranch. The oldest brother, Calvin, becomes a stern and forbidding surrogate father to the rest. The most beautiful of the sons, the intelligent and good-natured Caliban is only a child, but, working as a ranch hand at age thirteen, suffers a riding accident that leaves him a cripple. Isolated on the ranch, he never can find the sort of companionship his heart desires, until Nick comes to work as a horse wrangler. The two fall in love, and moving in together, with Nick ostensibly to assist Caliban with household chores he can’t handle himself, the two live a long and happy life together—until disaster strikes.Caliban won’t take sides in the family feud, but when his drunken brother Caleb inadvertently reveals the nature of the relationship between Nick and Caliban, Nick is badly beaten and threatened. Caliban sells his share of the ranch and the two go to live in a big city—just in time for the Depression to start. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the profligate and selfish ways of Calvin, Jr., send his parents to ruin. His father has a stroke and become bedridden, but continues to defend his dastardly son. His wife leaves him, but continues to care for him by coming over once or twice a day to feed and bathe him. Viz pays scant attention to the larger history unfolding outside the ranch, revealing those changes and developments that matter to the characters, but keeping the focus tightly on the ranch and later the town called ‘Caladelphia.’ He has perfectly captured the family’s dynamics over several generations, as well as the vernacular language of the time. The love he depicts between Nick and Caliban is genuinely moving, and the cast of supporting characters, from the grasping Calvin, Sr, to the hardworking, grudge-bearing Calhoun, the drunken and conflicted Caleb, and the matriarchal Darcie, are all well drawn and completely believable. Highly recommended.

  • Blackravens Reviews
    2019-01-10 08:12

    Kathy’s Review:The City of Lovely Brothers by Anel Viz is an engrossing novel that is so vividly portrayed that the reader forgets the story is, in fact, a work of fiction.The City of Lovely Brothers is based on the fictional diary of Caliban’s lover and partner, Nick, and it details the Caldwell family’s life on a Montana ranch in the late 1800s through the 1930s. Calvin is the oldest of the four brothers, and he is tyrannical, unbending, and obsessed with owning as much land as possible. Caleb is the next oldest brother, whose hard drinking contributes to the beginning of the end of the family. Calhoun is an independent thinker who frequently butts heads with the domineering Calvin, and their contentious relationship reveals the first cracks in the family’s increasingly shaky foundation. Caliban is the much younger beloved baby of the family who is exceedingly good natured, well liked, and clearly the best of the Caldwell clan. The only daughter in the family is Caleb’s twin sister, Callie, who plays a minor yet significant role in the family’s story.Anel Viz’s blend of factual events with fictional details provides The City of Lovely Brothers a great deal of authenticity that quickly pulls the reader into the story. The brothers and their families are richly drawn characters that Mr. Viz brings vibrantly to life. Their flaws and imperfections contribute to the overall feeling that The City of Lovely Brothers is based on real people and true events. Nick’s careful observations provide a great of insight into the brother’s complicated and heartbreaking relaionship. The family discord rings true, and their eventual outcome becomes readily apparent.The City of Lovely Brothers by Anel Viz is a well written novel that moves at a fast and even pace. Caliban’s and Nick’s relationship is a true delight, and it absolutely charms the reader. I became fully invested in this lengthy family saga, and I found myself reluctant for the book to end. The ending is bittersweet yet very satisfying and Mr. Viz does a wonderful job of tying up all of the loose ends.Rated 5 Ravens by Kathy!

  • Carrie
    2019-01-19 02:58

    My favorite book right now! Very well written with great characters, it felt very real & plausible. I was left with a few questions at the end, mostly about how the town evolved after the depression & how was it that the last remaining Caldwells left. It would have been nice to know what happened to everyone, but the ending made sense. I highly recommend this book & am looking forward to more from this author.

  • Zeh
    2019-01-18 06:12

    I love the author's honest and to the point style of writing, it really grips you and pulls you in. Every scene is so easy to visualize and at times it feels like watching a family drama unfolding beyond the screen of your eyes, exactly like a movie playing in your head. There are some very lovable characters and some detestable ones as well. Through it all, there are some moments that makes you want to cry, laugh, and scream.Each of the brothers are unique in their own ways and you'll probably find Calvin unlikeable, Calhoun reliable, and Caleb pitiful. (view spoiler)[ So very pitiful. I wouldn't file this book under 'incest' because nothing happens but you'll find out a little half way though the book that Caleb carries a huge torch for his younger brother Caliban. One that is so unrequited and sad and in it all, I think is the root of his drinking problems. (hide spoiler)] Caliban, the youngest, is the most likable and lovable brother. Him and Nick are probably the strongest couple in the book. Beyond the bonds of friendship and lover, they keep no secrets and whatever resentments or potential problems they have, they duke it out between themselves. Their commitment to each other is unshakable and it is really a beautiful relationship. Among the wives and the children, there are some strong characters as well, like Darcy (Calvin's wife). And then there is of course Calvin Jr, through his father's coddling (I would like to think because of Calvin's greediness, fate has bestowed to him only daughters. You can tell he wanted a son so bad it burns him whenever Calhoun and Caleb is popping up sons left and right. So of course, when he had Calvin Jr, he coddled and spoiled him like crazy...spear the rod....oh pe.lez!), grew up as a spoiled and irresponsible adult who will cause his parent much grief in the future. This book is published in 2010 and I'm amazed by the few number of readers. It is such a great book but I guess people are deterred from it by its length. I highly recommend this book if you enjoy something a little different from the normal m/m romance.

  • Neet
    2019-01-15 09:17

    What a wonderful big juicy novel that tells the story and history of the 4 Caldwell brothers. The story takes place in the 1880's where we're introduced to the 4 young brothers,Calvin,Caleb, Calhoun, and Caliban Caldwell. There is also a daughter, Callie who was treated horribly and took care and loved her younger brother Caliban when their mother was ill and eventually died. Callie would eventually leave the ranch with a hired hand and though she loved her younger brother was glad to leave the place where her brothers and father ( who passed soon after their mother) was treated more like a slave than flesh and blood. Calvin, who was the oldest brother and felt he was the authority figure and though when the property was to be divided equally among the men of the family ( Callie was to get a decent dowry) Calvin held the purse strings and made all the decisions. I hated Calvin, he was a cruel and greedy man . I loved the character of Caliban, who was the youngest of the brothers and the one who everyone liked. Calvin was even cruel to his younger brother , especially when he had an accident that would maim him for the rest of his life. It's ultimately Cal's story, his awareness that he's different, and his falling in love with ranch hand Nick.I won't say more, other. than this is a wonderful novel to read on a cool autum night...it is indeed a good read!

  • Christopher Moss
    2018-12-21 09:12

    See http://kitmossreviews.blogspot.com .

  • Amber
    2019-01-06 08:11

    This book isn't for everyone, I'm not even really sure I would label it a mm romance book. There are some gay characters but the focus of the story isn't exactly on them or a lot more than them. This book follows the four brothers and it follows each of their lives including Caliban who is gay. It is writing in third person and each part of the story prefaced by a historian that pieced together the brother's story through historical documents and Nick, Caliban's lover's, journal. Because of the narration style I felt set apart from the character and it felt very dry. Despite the sex scene including turn of century dildos and anal beads I didn't feel any passion or heat. Still I found the story captivating with depiction of these men as they fought, married, and built at town in the late 1800's and into the great depression. I don't think I would recommend this book to an average mm read but for people that like history or biography type books this one has a very captivating story.

  • Francesca
    2018-12-23 01:57

    This book was recommended to me and I became so intrigued I contacted the author and asked him if I could purchase a copy (I believe this was independently published and I couldn't find a copy anywhere). It was really like nothing I have read before-the closest thing I can think to compare it to is One Hundred Years of Solitude . Such an interesting narration, a large cast of well-developed characters, and well-done plot twists.

  • Leta Blake
    2019-01-10 02:08

    Wonderful book. Fantastic use of omniscient point of view, which is so rarely seen. Made me cry more than once. It seemed incredibly well researched but it was the humanity of it that was so beautiful and touching. Loved it. Recommended.

  • Angel
    2018-12-28 06:00

    I LOVED this book! Beautifully written. It stayed with me long after I finished reading it. Bravo Mr. Viz!

  • Marie
    2019-01-11 07:58

    3½ stars.