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24 total reviews

Part provocateur, part seducer, this young gay man’s account of life offers one of the freshest takes on Australia and the world today.

Honouring poets of the past – Jean Genet, Veronica Franco, Euripedes, Hunter S. Thompson, Oscar Wilde – and joining in their task of finding meaning in existence and the modern world, Tolcher has produced a brazenly honest debut without precedent.

Through his writing he subverts his own shame, weaponises it, and positions himself as an anti-hero of our time right when we need him the most.

Following his humble beginnings as an outcast in the dreary outer suburbs of Brisbane and escalating into a Dionysian, poetic and pornographic international climax, Poof follows Tolcher's search for love and purpose as he is drawn to the beds of powerful, sadistic men. If he can endure just a little longer, a little more... will they love him?

In an age of victimhood, Tolcher offers us a roadmap to empowerment and integrity as he pulls back the curtain on both our pride and our shame, and shines a spotlight on a hidden history that has been erased time and again.

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Customer Reviews

Based on 24 reviews
Michael Olsen
This is My Life 😞

Poof is a great read. So much of the content reflects my own life experience. Thank you James. I feel quite normal after reading your life challenges and experiences.

Kevin Tutt
It’s like reading my own life story.

This is a wonderful story about the challenges faced by James in his childhood and the consequences of trauma. It echoes loudly in my own life and has reawakened some demons but also helped me to put them to rest. This is an emotional roller coaster of a journey exposing the worst in people and also the best.

Michael robertson
🐯 Raw roar 🦁

Raw I took this book on holiday with me to Japan, and said I would only read a couple of pages a day took me a couple of days to get into it but then Boy oh boy, it flew never wanted to hug someone and slap someone at the same time I hope you’re well and safe and stay away from the meth

Peter S
Extraordinarily, Brutally Submissive Life.

Taking into account my review title, upon reading the book, I didn’t know there were people out there who could inflict such brutality upon another human being for sexual pleasure, or there were people like James who would take it. Did James also get sexual pleasure from the beatings? At one point MM said he could go to jail for the beatings he inflicted upon James and I was thinking like: ‘yeah you should be in jail you sadist creep’ (not that James would ever go to the police).
I found the book profoundly disturbing but James’s honesty in telling his story opened my eyes to a world I didn’t know existed that shone a light on this part of the LGBTQIA+ community for me.
I was also troubled by his being bullied as a little boy of four by another group of four year old boys who wouldn’t let him play with him. Just confirms how young bullies can be.
Furthermore, I worked at a private school for more than 30 years and, given this length of time, I became aware of, and good at picking out boys who were struggling to fit in and needed support. These included boys I suspected were gay. I was therefore appalled that James appears to not have had such a caring adult at the schools he attended as a teenager to look out for him and to engage with him about his sexuality and ensure him that it was okay to be gay and it was not something to be ashamed of. I think this would have helped him enormously as he was struggling to come to gripes with his life that he did not understand.
All in all a sobering read.

James Arnold

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