James Hannaham's God Says No might as well be subtitled Nature vs. Nurture in 302 Pages. Protagonist Gary Gray was born a big fat homo. Unfortunately for the fragile boxing ring that is his psyche, he was raised a devout Christian in a conservative African American community. The gloves come off in the first chapter, as a young Gary fights to ignore his growing attraction to his roommate at Central Florida Christian College. Recognizing his homosexual impulses as the work of a very, very sexy and persuasive Satan, Gary does his best to overcome his true nature—marrying a woman, having a kid, entering gay rehab. It's a McSweeney's title, so I'll leave it to you guess if Gary gets the gay out.
Hannaham's writing doesn't benefit from close inspection—when Gary moves in with a new lover, he thinks: "For a while, our life together was like that moment when the waiter sets a creamy dessert in front of you, long before you have to pay." Hmm, wonder how that romance is going to end? When Gary is angry, his "blood boils," and when he's depressed? "I would have sobbed, but my sadness was too vast, too nameless for tears."
Sure, it reads like a ghostwritten celebrity memoir. But 'tis the season for filing indifferently written novels as "beach reads." And all the elements are in place—sex, drugs, and colorful characters overcoming Big Issue obstacles. It's a hero's quest in which the Holy Grail is guilt-free anal. File this one as a decent piece of genre fic in a genre that hasn't been invented yet.