Snowball in Hell takes place during World War II in 1943 Los Angeles. This story is more than a murder mystery. It is about a man that is in so much pain that death seems like his only option for peace. Nathan is a reporter and a suspect in a murder investigation but all this takes a back seat to his struggle with loneliness, fear, guilt, and depression over his sexuality. During this time, homosexuality was viewed as a sickness or a condition that should be healed and Nathan wanted nothing more than to feel "normal". He was constantly ashamed of his feelings and he was always looking over his shoulder. This struck a chord with me because we're not only talking about fear of not being accepted, but a fear for your safety - a basic human right that many of us take for granted. How sad it is that you can't even embrace someone you care about behind closed doors. It was heartbreaking because all he wanted was to feel safe and loved. I wish I could reach through the pages and protect Nathan.
Lanyon did a beautiful job at bringing the atmosphere and setting alive. I even enjoyed the mystery because of the classic film noir feel. I could see the smoky clubs, the long trench coats, the fedora style hats. It was really like watching a film set in the 40's.
However, the romance felt rushed towards the end especially since it had such a slow build-up.
I liked Matt's character and I hope that Nathan can find his safety in Matt's arms. Everyone deserves this.