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Literature / These Words Are True and Faithful

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These Words Are True and Faithful is a 2018 novel by Eugene Galt. It won the 2020 Global Ebook Awards in LGBT fiction (gold medal) and contemporary romance/erotica fiction (silver medal) and was an editors' pick on

The plot centers on a Love Triangle; the book is a psychological portrait of the Villain Protagonist, who falls in love with and later cheats on his partner. After a chance meeting at the courthouse, 26-year-old lawyer Sam Overton and 39-year-old police officer Ernie Butler become lovers until their relationship develops difficulties, whereupon Ernie starts an affair with retail worker Danny Parsons.

These Words Are True and Faithful contains examples of:

  • Capitalism Is Bad: Parodied. Two directly opposed factions in a political dispute blame each other on white gay men and capitalism. Later, Danny dismisses Ernie's common-sense advice on how to be a financially solvent adult as capitalist brainwashing.
  • Christianity is Catholic: Averted. Ernie, while nonobservant, identifies as a Catholic and is shocked to learn that the evangelical Protestant denomination in which Sam was raised does not consider Catholics even to be Christians.
  • Fetish-Fuel Future: In-universe. Ernie likes to watch porn set in speculative societies in which his fetishes are openly practiced or even codified into law.
  • Gayborhood: Ernie enjoys being seen with Sam here. Later, Ernie's indiscretion is discovered here.
  • Greek Chorus: One of the secondary characters, when gossiping about Ernie.
  • Loving a Shadow: Sam accuses Ernie of treating him as "a blank slate onto which you could project all of your fantasies" during the post mortem on their relationship.
  • No Guy Wants an Amazon (gay version): Sam takes Ernie to a party thrown by a partner at Sam's firm and his wife, a radiologist. Ernie is upset that everyone at the party is a doctor or a lawyer except him. This is the point at which Ernie starts to fall out of love with Sam.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Ernie is impulsive, boasts of relying on his gut feelings, and interprets events as signs that some things are just meant to be. Sam is methodical and interprets events as the workings of probability. At one point, Ernie accuses Sam of sticking his "rational, rigorous mind where it doesn't belong."
  • Romanticism Versus Enlightenment: Team Enlightenment includes Sam (major character) and Rob, Nathan, Tracy, and Jack (secondary characters), while Team Romanticism includes Ernie (major character) and Cassilda, Danny, Saul, and the pastor (secondary characters). Debbie is initially a fence-sitter but eventually joins Team Enlightenment. The last chapter hints at a reconciliation of the two.
  • Sarcastic Title: Many of the characters either lie or believe others' lies. Also, "these words are true and faithful" is from the Book of Revelation, and the book is critical of Christianity.
  • Straight Gay: A secondary character accuses Sam and Ernie of being "not really gay." Sam responds by sarcastically apologizing for "not following the one true way."
  • White-and-Grey Morality: The good guys are good. The bad guys haven't thought things through (Cassilda), let their hearts (or other body parts) rule their actions (Ernie), behave in manners that at first seem shocking but are ultimately harmless (Michael), or could plausibly blame at least some of their issues on overly indulgent parenting (Danny). The only unambiguously evil character is Pastor Mandeville.