Read an exclusive excerpt from Glitterland by Alexis Hall

Glitterland by Alexis Hall. Image courtesy Sourcebooks Casablanca
Glitterland by Alexis Hall. Image courtesy Sourcebooks Casablanca /

Some romance authors have a knack for writing books and one author who embodies that to me is Alexis Hall. Whether it’s with Glitterland, Boyfriend Material, or one of his other books, he is a writing machine.

Even though I’ve only read one of his books, I’ve heard him talked about constantly. That’s why when Sourcebooks Casablanca reached out to me about Glitterland, I had to say yes. He’s such a beloved and widely discussed author so there’s no way I could say no.

However, if you’ve been living under a rock and don’t know who Alexis Hall is, he’s an incredibly popular romance author who has written and continues to write in all different romance subgenres. Additionally, most of his catalog features queer characters in queer relationships including the one we’re talking about today, Glitterland.

While you might recognize the title, you might be surprised to learn it was picked up by Sourcebooks Casablanca and is now being traditionally published with a new cover and some bonus content.

If you’re excited about Glitterland by Alexis Hall, we have an excerpt to share.

Before we get into the excerpt, I want to let you know to make sure to come back on release day because we’ll be sharing our review of the book but let’s get into the juicy stuff.

"In all these years, this is all I have learned: Depression simply is. It has no beginning and no end, no boundaries and no world outside itself. It is the first, the last, the only, the alpha and the omega. Memories of better times die upon its desolate shores. Voices drown in its seas. The mind becomes its own prisoner.I pulled out my phone and checked the time. It was close to midnight, an entirely reasonable hour to slip away and fall apart in the safety of my own home. I leaned over the railing, looking for Niall, only to be arrested by a dazzle of silver through the haze of colour-shifting shadows, bright like clean water. It took me a moment to realise it was the light catching on the epaulettes of a man dancing just below me.Fuck knew what I was doing staring at someone who thought sparkly epaulettes were any sort of fashion statement but, God help me, I was. Maybe it was the way he was dancing, eyes half closed, a half-smile on his lips, as though he honestly couldn’t think of anything better to do in the world than wriggle his hips to music. To be fair, he wriggled them most effectively, showing off the lines of a spare and slender, lightly muscled body.He was a ridiculous creature. A vulgar, glittering pirate of a man, all jewellery and fake tan, gold glinting in his ears, on his fingers and round his wrists. His dark hair gleamed with product and had been painstakingly teased into a quiff that defied taste, reason, and gravity. And I couldn’t stop looking at him. It was horrifying but the truth was there, undeniable, like some faint sonic echo deep within my skin, the thin batsqueak of sexuality. I wanted him.What remained of me these days was a muted thing, a patchwork of broken pieces.My loved ones had all slipped away from me, disappearing into their future happiness, and still I felt nothing. Niall had not been, by any means, my only lover since the institution. But that my hollow flesh should answer the brazen alarum of a man who was practically orange and wearing beneath his jacket a shirt that read “Sexy and I know it,” could only have been the sick joke of a universe that despised me.Suddenly he looked up at me and grinned. An absurd, wide, endless grin filled with artificially white teeth. And I forgot how to breathe. I expected him to go back to dancing, but instead he climbed onto one of the floor speakers beneath my balcony, pulling himself almost up to my eye level, like the world’s most ill-suited Romeo in pursuit of the world’s least convincing Juliet.“I gotta say, babes,” he said in a nasal Essex whine, “you’re giving me sutcha bedroom look.”I stared down into his face, so close to mine. Babes? And, dear God, that accent. “Well,” I heard myself answer, “play your cards right and I might consent to do more than look.”“Omigod, you talk like the Queen.”I blinked. “Pardon?”“Are you in parliament?”I had the feeling I’d lost control of the conversation. “What? No. I’m a writer.”“Omigod, really?” He sounded both impressed and bewildered, as if I’d said I went fishing on the moon. “What do you write?”I gave my standard answer. “Books.”He threw back his head and laughed, as if I’d been genuinely funny. “You donut. What’s your name?”“A.A. Winters.”“What, that’s your name?”“Yes,” I said impatiently, “that’s my name.”“That’s what people call you?”“Yes?”“Like in bed, or whatever? They call you A.A. Winters?”I met his eyes. “No, in bed they call me God.”He laughed again, the same uninhibited cackle. “Like it,” he said, except he drew out the syllables until the two words were barely recognisable as themselves: lie-kit. “But, seriously, babes, what’s your name? My nan told me not to go wif a geeza what won’t tell you ’is name.”“You’re going to…go with me?”“I’m finking abaht it,” he admitted, a trifle coyly for a man negotiating a one-night stand.“Well, all right. I suppose you can call me Ash.”He told me his name but I didn’t bother to remember it. “Come on then, Essex,” I said. “Get your coat. You’ve pulled.”His grin flashed through the gloom. “I’m already wearing it.”To my surprise, he reached up his hand, as though he expected me to jump the railing.“I’ll go round,” I said firmly.“It’s ahwight, babes, I’ll catch you.”“I’m not going to throw myself off a VIP balcony on the off chance a complete stranger won’t drop me.”“We could’ve been ’ome, the amanta time you’ve spent talking abaht it.”“Fine,” I snapped. “Fine.”I leaned over the railing and took his hand. His nails were painted silver to match his epaulettes. This could only end badly. I scrambled gracelessly over the balcony and onto the speaker, which rocked under the impact of my landing and made me clutch at Essex like an utter fool. His laughter curled against my ear, the heat of his body enfolding me in an embrace. I shuddered. It was awful and lovely at the same time but before I could really begin to deal with the contradictions of my response, he had swung off the speaker and was pulling me down after him.“There you go, babes. That was ahwight, wunit?”I was beginning to think he had a vocabulary of about a hundred words, and fifty of them weren’t English. I must have been beyond hammered to be thinking about sleeping with him. Of course, it was possible he didn’t exist, but I doubted even the extremity of my psychosis could have conjured such a man.He took my hand, actually took my hand, and led me outside."

Once again, I’d like to thank Sourcebooks Casablanca for sending me that excerpt as I read through it while editing and it’s enough to make me want to drop everything and read it. Maybe that’s just the addictiveness of Alexis Hall’s writing, though.

Either way, I’m happy to see Alexis Hall getting more attention and Glitterland being a traditionally published romance now. Hopefully, this allows the book to get into more hands of readers who might not have known about it until a traditional release.

Glitterland by Alexis Hall is releasing on January 17th, 2023. 

Next. What were the biggest romance book trends for 2022?. dark

Are you excited about Glitterland being traditionally published? Will you be picking up a copy on the release date? Let us know in the comments.