The Grand Ballast

J.A. Rock

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The Grand Ballast

The Grand Ballast In a future where live sex shows abound to keep a jaded population entertained dancer Bode Martin falls for the brilliant and unstable Kilroy Ballast who molds Bode into the star attraction of his e

  • Title: The Grand Ballast
  • Author: J.A. Rock
  • ISBN: 9781503160637
  • Page: 148
  • Format: Paperback
  • In a future where live sex shows abound to keep a jaded population entertained, dancer Bode Martin falls for the brilliant and unstable Kilroy Ballast, who molds Bode into the star attraction of his erotic circus, the Grand Ballast Drugged beyond any real feeling, Bode trades freedom and his once considerable pride for an illusion of tenderness until he inadvertently rescIn a future where live sex shows abound to keep a jaded population entertained, dancer Bode Martin falls for the brilliant and unstable Kilroy Ballast, who molds Bode into the star attraction of his erotic circus, the Grand Ballast Drugged beyond any real feeling, Bode trades freedom and his once considerable pride for an illusion of tenderness until he inadvertently rescues a young man from a rival show, and together they flee to an eccentric town in the west where love still means something.Valen s not an easy man to know, and Bode shed his romantic notions under Kilroy s brutal employ Yet their growing bond becomes a strange and dangerous salvation as they attempt to overthrow the shadows of their pasts and wade together through a world of regret, uncertainty, beauty, and terror.But Kilroy won t let Bode go so easily Long ago, Bode was responsible for the loss of something Kilroy held dear, and he still owes Kilroy a debt As the three men battle toward a tangled destiny, Bode must decide if his love for Valen is worth fighting for or if he was and always will be a pawn in the story Kilroy Ballast will never stop telling.WARNING Contains violence and noncon Not a genre romance.

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      Published :2019-01-06T02:41:17+00:00

    One thought on “The Grand Ballast

    1. Optimist ♰King's Wench♰ & MANTIES Champion on said:

      Let me just expound on that last line of the description. No, it's not a "romance" but it is about love and all its permutations. What does it look like? Feel like? Do we know it when we have it? What do we do with it? Where does it go when it's gone? No, it's not a romance but it is brutally romantic in its honesty about the nebulousness of love and Bode's ironic journey to discover what it means to him.The non-con and violence warnings I really want to say just disregard them because life can [...]

    2. Lisa Henry on said:

      I'm not rating it because I write with JA, and I also beta read this, but if I had to give it stars I would give it ALL THE STARS. It's wonderful, and creepy, and awful, and beautiful and grotesque. It's a dreamscape, or a nightmare. The world building is fantastic, and the imagery is the sort of stuff that you can still see after you close your eyes. It's unlike anything I've read before in this genre, and I loved it.

    3. Macky on said:

      Roll up! Roll up! Enter the darkly disturbing, sinister world of The Grand Ballast and take your seats for a most unsettling ride!OMG! J.A Rock took me to places in this book that had my skin crawling, my stomach churning and my heart pumping wildly, but fuckI couldn't have loved it more! SO different from the norm, I could not put this amazing book down, and after I'd finished, had one of the strangest emotional reactions to a reading session I think I've ever experienced!The gamut of dramatic [...]

    4. Apeiron on said:

      What is The Grand Ballast about?I guess it's about love, happiness, meaning, right, wrong, beauty, obsession, passion. Art. But I'm not ready to describe how and who and what, which is just as well because I don't think my description would do justice to how brilliantly The Grand Ballast fucks with your expectations. Mostly, this book is about you. It questions the things that you think are important and builds a monument for your most shameful secrets.(and if you create things or believe in big [...]

    5. Mel on said:

      I don't know what the point of art is if you don't scare people a little.I love this quote. In general. Because it's at the edges that we feel and learn and breathe again.I love it concerning this book. It should scare you a little, to read it, while reading it. Just a litte.People watched.He tapped the pavement with a toe, then a heel. He bent and shifted and spun. Sent his joy, his anger, out into the space around him. Closed his eyes and felt the sun on his skin; moved from the sidewalk to th [...]

    6. Xing on said:

      This story is like a pattern. A repetition of geometry you can be lost in when paying too much attention to the present, but take a step back and you see the design. A grotesque design of sweat, blood, and contorted, screaming bodies twisted by people’s sick desires.And to be honest? It was beautiful.The Grand Ballast is a story that takes place in a modern-day/slightly-futuristic society where X-rated shows have become the solution to widespread apathy. And Kilroy Ballast is among the best, b [...]

    7. Monique ~ Sinfully on said:

      The Grand Ballast by J.A. Rock is a devastatingly thought provoking and utterly mind blowing surreal experience that some, but not all, will truly relish. Sometimes a book just hits you, as in, completely knocks you for six… because of the exceptional writing and the incredibly brilliant concept and ingenuity behind it, which makes you want to shout to the world, READ THIS BOOK!Check out our Macky’s review to find out why this book is so outstanding in our eyes.

    8. Sofia on said:

      Dark and surreal, a book I read with my mind rather than my heart because that's where it touched. This is my second Rock and she took me on a journey. A journey that made me think. As before Rock made me think not just about the story but about our world and how we see things and what we do with what we see. (view spoiler)[We see this world through Bode’s dissatisfied eyes and it’s a dismal world, a world with no connections and I do wonder if this is truly so or if it’s just Bode’s per [...]

    9. Lila on said:

      3,5 stars"Ladies and Gentleman.And kids of legal age!Welcome to the greatest show on Earth!Whatever rattles your cage!Whatever tickles your fancy!We have it.So strap on." ;)The Grand Ballast is a little bit of AHS: Freak Show and a little bit of Hostel, and if you give it a deeper thought (and I dare you not) it's a subtle social critique showing depressing future not unlike Black Mirror does.While first and second comparison gives you a pretty good idea about disturbing imagery, it's the last o [...]

    10. Jenn on said:

      J.A. is a beast with words. The emotions she digs up make me almost uncomfortable, if only because she manages to drag up pieces of me I would rather have buried.

    11. Izzy on said:

      4* Before I begin the review proper can I say whether by accident or design there were no trigger warnings when I looked – This should have warnings concerning ‘noncon’ – ‘dubcon’ – cruelty – physical abuse, and psychological abuse.The Grand Ballast is not a genre romance. In fact it is not a romance – although there is a love story element. It is more of an intense dissection of the human condition. In many ways it is a minor masterpiece, and I’m sure many will call it so, j [...]

    12. Aimee ~is busy sleeping~ on said:

      I was not prepared for this book.I'm not sure you can be at all.I guess my mind is still kind of in a daze. I'm not sure how to process the range of emotions I felt while reading this. Towards the end, I eventually had to just numb myself to keep going through the horrors that were happening on page. I'm glad I stuck through it, because that last chapterMade me want to cry and cry. It made me feel uncomfortable and emotional and it was all weirdly beautiful.I started it 4 hours ago and it is now [...]

    13. Amy Cousins on said:

      Just started reading the ARC and it's KILLING ME how awesome this is. Gah. She slays me with her wordsA: JA Rock has written a powerful book. It is dark. It is disturbing. It is, ultimately, full of hope that we can look out for one another, even if it's impossible ever to save anyone. Reading this book is like reading a surrealist painting, if Heironymus Bosch was a surrealist. The writing is so gorgeous it makes me shiver.Trigger warnings for all kinds of things. I mean it. A lot.

    14. Carol on said:

      Ten stars. So beautiful in its ugliness and wildness. I wish J.A.Rock would start writing outside of the genre so I could show her poetry and skills to the people around me who (sadly) do not care for gay romance

    15. Maarja on said:

      I don't know what to write, maybe I'll think of something later, but this was a breathtaking trip and my heartfelt thanks to Mel for convincing me to read this book.

    16. JJ on said:

      This book was provided free in exchange for a fair and honest review for Love Bytes. Go there to check out other reviews, author interviews, and all those awesome giveaways. Click below.The Grand Ballast is an extremely moving exploration of the meaning of true love. The story begins with Bode’s decision to stop taking drugs that leave circus performers in a haze so they can perform with emotional disconnect. Bode has been in a relationship with Kilory for some time, but now that he’s no lon [...]

    17. Helle on said:

      Thank you so much M/M Secret Santa for the book, that I have wish for a long time, I can't wait to read it. What a surprise to get this evening. Secret Santa you are awesome and fantastic and you spoiled me, Thank you so much

    18. Joyfully Jay on said:

      A Joyfully Jay review. 5 starsA book set in a society where everyone is bored and no one believes in love should be the first indication that this is not what would be considered a traditional romance. We must then look to the writing, as the sheer force of words and imagery that J.A. Rock puts forth to connect the characters and the reader to this new world is amazing. Set somewhere in the future with no real sense of time or place, the landscape of the story offers billowy, dream-like edges co [...]

    19. ItsAboutTheBook on said:

      Review can be read at It's About The Book4.5 starsBode Martin wants to feel and show his story of feeling to other people. Unfortunately most audiences don’t want to see uncomfortable feelings. For a dancer who wants to explore the wide world of emotions this is a problem. Kilroy Ballast sees in Bode a great talent and real beauty. Kilroy is going to take Bode’s talent and show it to the world. Bode falls in love with Kilroy. It’s nice for Bode to finally leave home as he doesn’t underst [...]

    20. Ruth on said:

      I know it's unfair to rate a book when you never even finished it, but I kind of felt readers deserved a bit of warning before jumping into this book.I got around 20% in and had to stop because it was just so upsetting to me. Now, I'm going to say that people who like this kind of work will probably enjoy it. I, personally, could not get around the grotesque imagery and the absolutely bleak world painted by the author. It's well written, no doubt about that, but please, please know what you are [...]

    21. Paul on said:

      5 STARSThis was just another amazing J.A. Rock novel. This incredible tale is written brilliantly, yet this is by no means a nice book. Trigger Warnings The MC's paths are quickly, yet sadly set in stone from the beginning. Like oil and water, never shall the twain meet, yet they do. No matter how tiny the particles might become at times, they repel each other. It's akin to watching the two forces after being violently agitated in a glass jar, they initially muddy yet never connect, can't connec [...]

    22. Riayl on said:

      All my love and respect to the person who though to add "not a genre romance" to the blurb. I've come across places where authors are upset because they feel that we (meaning readers, but I think in particular female readers) are trying to dictate both what a romance is and who/what/how a gay man is - because some people get upset when they unexpectedly find a m/f sex scene in their m/m romance, one of the characters is married and stays married while having their romance on the side, etc.What I [...]

    23. Don on said:

      This is a somewhat rangy, slightly overwritten but frequently wonderful piece of work. Even though the plot revolves around a sex circus, there is precious little sex, graphic or otherwise. This is not altogether in its favor considering it’s the dystopian world of the x rated circus and its bizarre inhabitants that compel the story. Pleanty happens on other levels, however, to keep the pages turning. Not only is the writing excellent, as we’ve come to expect from this author, but she delive [...]

    24. Ally on said:

      10/10 stars.Beautiful and dark. I've read many books by J.A. Rock, but nothing took my breath away as The Grand Ballast did. It is the kind of book that paints a picture in your mind and awakens feelings in you you might not have felt in a while, or even remember you have. Incomparable.

    25. Misty on said:

      *DNF*(46%)I really like the premise and I was so sure I would love this book but the constant flashbacks and shifts between present and past just ruined it. I'm SO frustrated!

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