LOVE IN DARK SETTINGS ¶ Suspenseful m/m novels by Dusk Peterson

Imprisonment. Slavery. War. Love.

Honored in the Rainbow Awards, Dusk Peterson writes suspenseful love stories, friendship fiction, and romantic friendship fiction with gay, bisexual, heterosexual, asexual, and transgender characters. Formerly a journalist and history writer, Peterson has written fantasy and science fiction with historical settings, romance, suspense, contemporary fiction, and narrative nonfiction.

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     ¶ Sections below: New stories | E-books and online writings | About the author | Copyright | E-mail.
     ¶ Information: Award-winning stories | Search for stories by tag (keyword) | Latest reviews | Love in Dark Settings Press FAQ |
     ¶ Join the conversation: Blog, list, and social networks | Shared universes: works set in Dusk Peterson's worlds by other authors and artists.


Catching up

As readers of my blog and e-mail list know, I've been busy moving to a new town this spring. I'm catching up with work now. I'll have some new stories, multiformat editions, and covers soon. In the meantime, new visitors to this website may wish to explore the links below.

New Stories archive



Turn-of-the-Century Toughs

A cycle of historical speculative fiction series about disreputable men on the margins of society, and the men who love them. The novels are set in an imaginary version of Maryland and other Mid-Atlantic states between the 1880s and the 1910s. One of the series in the cycle, Waterman, combines elements of the 1910s with retrofuturistic imagery from the 1960s.

The Eternal Dungeon. In a cool, dark cavern, guarded by men and by oaths, lies a dungeon in which prisoners fearfully await the inevitable. The inevitable will be replaced by the unexpected. ¶ The Eternal Dungeon is a speculative fiction series set in a nineteenth-century prison where the psychologists wield whips.

Life Prison. They are imprisoned until death, and their lives cannot get worse . . . or so they think. But when an unlikely alliance forms against their captors, the reformers risk losing what little comforts they possess. ¶ Life Prison is a speculative fiction series about male desire and determination in nineteenth-century prisons.

Commando. The nautical nation is backed by the military might of an empire. The mountainous republic is populated by farmers and shopkeepers, and it has no standing army. The nautical nation is about to make the mistake of attacking the mountainous republic. ¶ Commando is a speculative fiction series that imagines what the South African Boer War could have been like if it had been fought on American soil.

Michael's House. In a world where temples are dying and sacred theaters have been replaced by brothels, what will happen when a hard-headed businessman joins forces with an idealist? ¶ Michael's House is a speculative fiction series set in a Progressive Era slum.

Waterman. How can a youth from a bay island boarding school survive when he is sent to a futuristic prison? ¶ Waterman is a speculative fiction series inspired by the Chesapeake Bay oyster wars, boarding school rivalries in the 1910s, and 1960s visions of things to come.

The Three Lands

A fantasy series on friendship, romantic friendship, romance, and betrayal in times of war and peace. The series is inspired by conflicts between nations during the Roman Empire and the Dark Ages.

The Three Lands. He vowed himself to his god. Now the god is growing impatient . . .

Sweet Suffering & Subtext

A soldier courts a young woman on the eve of battle. An aircar chauffeur tests the boundaries of his enslavement. A despairing captive in a Renaissance prison must choose whether to obey the deadly command of a lord. . . . Speculative fiction on friendship, romance, and faithful service amidst hardship and transformation.

Princeling. In a world in which only the pitiless nobles who wage war hold power, and those who cannot fight must suffer or seek slow death . . . What would you do if you were a noble, and you lost the ability to fight? ¶ Princeling is a fantasy series set in a world where war has lasted for generations.

Darkling Plain. Separated in time and place, these young women and young men are united in their goal: to protect those they care for from the destruction of battle. The odds are against them. ¶ Darkling Plain is a collection of fantasy tales about young people in times of conflict.

Master/Other. Masters come in many forms. Some don't even know they're masters. ¶ Romantic and poignant, Master/Other offers speculative fiction stories exploring the dangers and sweet bonds of power.

Slaves of the Northern Corporate Dominion. When humans are seen only in terms of profit and loss, what happens to humanity? ¶ Slaves of the Northern Corporate Dominion is a shared-universe science fiction series on exploitation and love, set in a time when a nation's corporate government has institutionalized slavery.

Subtext. Rare litfic.

Here and Now

Contemporary fiction.

Whisper of Secrets. Private confessions. Public masquerades. ¶ Whispers of Secrets is a cycle of mystery novels and contemporary fiction on the hidden secrets underlying ordinary contemporary life.

Main Street Leather. Leather is a world of rich pleasure palaces and endless sensual delights, where dreams can be pursued without limit, provided that a man has the strength to stand the test. . . . But in the rural town of Mayhill, population 32,000, leather life is a little different. ¶ Main Street Leather is a cycle of contemporary series with love stories and satire on transgressive sexuality in past decades and the present.

Just the Facts, Ma'am

Memoirs, journalism, and writings on literature, history, and other topics.

Pixel-Stained: a documentary memoir of the electronic publishing revolution in gay genre fiction. The Pixel-Stained series publishes Peterson's memoirs in the form of e-mail, posts, and other documents. These accounts depict life at several electronic literature communities connected with gay genre fiction, as witnessed from the inside of those communities.

Narrative Nonfiction. Narratives and other nonfiction about religion, literature, gender, sexuality, and other topics.

Online nonfiction. Just click on the link. It's a long list.



All writings, images, and videos by Dusk Peterson are copyright © 1981-2014 Dusk Peterson. For more information, see: Policies on Copyright, Sharing, Derivative Works, and Fan Works.

Cover designs: Dusk Peterson. Permission is granted for the reposting and reprinting of the banners, covers, and story summaries (blurbs) for the purposes of providing information on Dusk Peterson's writings. Please link to if possible.


If you send me pretty compliments, I will print your letter out and frame it above my computer. (This isn't much of an exaggeration.) If, on the other hand, you send me a letter that begins, "What kind of nit-witted writer are you? You gave your character blue eyes in scene one and green eyes in scene two!" then I will raise up a shrine in your honor and burn candles upon your altar.

Constructive criticism, enquiries, and idle chit-chat may be sent to Mx. Dusk Peterson at  duskpeterson(at) While I'm offline, my e-mail is monitored by my assistant; please mark any urgent e-mail with the subject heading "Time-sensitive."