Vann Turner ~ Author

~~ Tales of the Human Heart in Ancient Rome
& in our LGBT Communities. ~~


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         Write and you'll hear back. Promise.

Sometimes Lovin' is Hurtful

Whether you are man or woman, straight or gay,
*Sometimes* will grip your soul.

A rich piggy lifts a beaten redneck from a sidewalk. It is a negligible act,
but from it would arise riots outside the walls of Florida State Prison and transfiguration.
This poignant novel, alternately gritty and lyrical, is an intimate look at the lives of two men.
One of them is straight; one is gay. And NO, this is not a coming out story,
but it is an exploration into human loneliness and unadulterated love.

Set in the 1980's, the gritty opening scene has Robert Newell--straight and with head-turning good looks--
facing the reality of Carmen. In actuality he confronts the reality about himself--
how, to escape his homelessness, he has pandered himself to her lusts.
He speaks to her about wanting children and driving home after work to play with them in the backyard.
She speaks of sex toys.

Bob's beatified mother visits him in his sleep and in the morning he decides to make his move.
In order to reclaim his dignity of being a man, he will again make his home in his rusting pickup truck.
He hopes that one day he might obtain his dream. He acknowledges that it is a humble dream,
the common dream of Everyman--the dream of wife and family.

In Atlanta a Marine he had served with in Vietnam pummels him in a beer joint and tosses him out onto the sidewalk.
Blaine Shirer, a homely gay guy, has been prowling a nearby park for tricks. He stops to help Bob home.

Over weeks a sort of friendship develops--on again, off again. But eventually they manage to make a home together
and celebrate the negligible milestones of one life, of the other's and of the life they share together.
But then come bullets and judgment by the righteous.

Whether you are man or woman, straight or gay, Sometimes will grip your soul.

Vann Turner's
Sometimes Lovin' is Hurtful
A mainstream novel with gay theme
432 pages, 107,000 words
Paperback (ISBN: 978-0999858318), eBook (ISBN: 978-0999858363)
and Audiobook (ISBN: 978-0999858332)

Sometimes as eBook or Paperback

A free 30% sample is offered at most retailers.


Print-on-Demand by Ingram

Sometimes as AudioBook ~ Christopher Boucher, Narrator


To Forestall the Darkness

An idealist--spurned by his wife, taunted by the people and
more pagan than Christian--struggles against brutal overlords.

AD 589. In the Sixth Century Italy had been depopulated by plague and laid waste by decades of war.
Industry, agriculture, commerce and city life had all stopped.
Into this desolation the Germanic Lombards had come marching in, meeting no resistance.
Decades later, with things unimproved,
a new King appoints Titus Tribonius as his Chief Jurist for Roman Matters.

Titus, an upright man but more pagan than Christian,
seeks to protect the native Romans from the brutality of their overlords.
He has little success because the King had given him the responsibility for them
but not the authority to act.

It's a difficult time for Titus.
His wife's excessive piety shields her from his embrace.
The Romans despise him for being in cahoots with the Lombards
and he can't insult the King by resigning his office.

A friend's public castration on the cathedral steps compels him to act. But how?
Armed rebellion would be foolhardy and only increase the people's agony.
He decides on a course of action and pursues it.
After some success, his idealism rashly prompts him to free his four hundred slaves.
The Lombards see this as an attempt to undermine the very foundations of their State.
Charges are brought against him.

In this novel, Vann Turner bears witness to the dreams we cherish,
the difficulties we face and the courage we must summon when society threatens what we hold dear.

To Forestall the Darkness: A Novel of Ancient Rome, AD 589
Historical Fiction
612 pages, 158,000 words.
Third Edition, Nov 11, 2017
Paperback (ISBN: 978-0999858301), eBook (ISBN: 978-0999858387)
A free 30% sample is offered at most retailers.


Print-on-Demand by Ingram

To Abandon Rome

A RAGE that must be kept caged until the moment comes to release it.

This is a tale of the human heart in Ancient Rome.

It is about a RAGE that must be kept caged until the moment comes to release it.
It is also about the woman who must sit by and watch it happen.

Amid political machinations, the story focuses on two characters. The first is Titus.
An educated man and former Chief Magistrate to the Lombard King, he has been banished
and has sought refuge in Rome where he finds himself reduced to baking clay and lime in furnaces.
Only camaraderie with the lowest commoners softens his loss of all he had and loved.

Unknown to him the powerful are vying for position one against the other with Titus central to their schemes.
One of those factions lifts him out of the brick factory and appoints him to a minor office.

A letter from Titus's wife in distant Verona finds its way to him.
In it she confesses to being raped and names her defiler: the King's Master of Horse.
Titus's heart explodes with RAGE.

The other focus of the story is Adria.
Unmarried, she is a middle--aged woman who teaches flute to support herself.
She had first spied Titus when, at the close of the workday, he would sit in the Ad Elephantos district
and read aloud to the assembled workmen and their children.
When the plague struck him, she nursed him back to health and back to the brick factory.
On his appointment to the Aedileship, she stayed with him as chaste companion and helpmate.

When word arrives that the Lombard forces were amassing for a siege of the city,
rustics stream into its walls for safety. Providing for them falls to Titus.
A senator with Germanic connections orders Titus to use his popularity with the people
to get them to clamor for letting the King enter the city.
On the opposite side, the Pope--loyal to the Emperor--appoints him Consul
and charges him with a spirited defense.

Titus sees detriment to the people in both of those courses.
He discards them. As Consul with Plenary Powers he pursues his own course:
"We'll wait out the siege within the walls."
He knows his decision will jeopardize his life once the immediate crisis has passed.

The siege befalls. In a meeting to negotiate a truce, Titus's two personal adversaries face him:
First there is the King who had stripped from him all that he loved.
And then there is the King's Master of Horse who--in Titus's absence--
had defiled his wife, his Little Flower. It was the moment for RAGE.
Adria was there, strong Adria in disguise as a man--Adria who loved him,
Adria looking on with dread.

In this novel Vann Turner continues his poignant exploration of the human heart,
how closely we bind, how the world seeks to sever,
and how we all need the courage to defend what is most dear.

To Abandon Rome, AD 593
Historical Fiction
342 pages, 85,000 words.
Paperback (ISBN: 978-0999858325), eBook (ISBN: 978-0999858370)
A free 30% sample is offered at most retailers.


Print-on-Demand by Ingram

The maps of the city of Rome in *Abandon* cannot be adequately displayed
in an eBook because the map and legend cover left and right pages.
This necessitated the eBook edition to have simplified maps.
You may view, enlarge and/or download the full maps here (PDF format):
Map of Rome
Map of Rome's Northern Regions

a short-read

The Marine, the Lady & the Hag: An Adult Fable.

This loss of innocence fable is set in New York City at the height of the Vietnam war.
In it an idealistic Marine confronts the horrors that await him
and glimpses the societal structures that enable those horrors and are indifferent to them.
It's a gripping good read (only 3000 words).
eBook (ISBN: 978-0999858349)



A Personal Note

A shy person and something of a recluse, I avoid crowds and
try to avoid any attention. I am not on Facebook or Twitter.
What I have to say publicly, I say in my writings.

On occasion friends visit me and my dogs in our mountain home.
Every two weeks I go to the market for dairy products, fruits, vegetables and Oreos.
You'll recognize me in Walmart (Newport, TN) by the black armband I wear on the left.
If you do, come up and say hello. I welcome people into my life.
People are important.

Or if you would like to send me an email, I will answer you.
One-on-one works well for me, you see. It's the crowd or anonymous blather
that gives me the heebie-jeebies, not one-on-one contact.
And besides, email has proved to be a bridge to friendships.

Let me hear from you and you'll hear back. Promise.
Best wishes,


copyright 2018 Vann Turner DBA Feather Books