Crossing the Line: A Novel

Crossing the Line is a story of gay lives in Philadelphia over the course of a century-and-a-half. In the first years of the 21st century, Owen Gilroy retires from his career as a banker. Soon after, he begins to investigate the life of his ancestor, Hiram Milhouse, who was one of America's leading scientists in the 19th century and an early disciple of Darwin. Meanwhile, Owen begins to play a greater role in the life of his teen-aged grandson, Sam, when Sam's mother, Owen's daughter, grows concerned about the young boy's behavior. 


Discoveries are triggered when Owen and his partner, Brock, buy an old house in Philadelphia that once was Hiram's. Owen is soon tested by an affair that threatens his household and nearly destroys his effort to help Sam through his coming-of-age trials. The older man's journey into the past, like his struggle to guide--then rescue--his grandson, reveals much about the changing shape of American society and gay life in our time.


The story of Owen and Sam unfolds against the backdrop of 9/11, terrorism, the Iraq War, and human cloning. Hiram's 19th-century world features a runaway slave, Darwinism, the Civil War, religion and Republicans. In the end, the secrets of the past have a profound influence on the lives of both Owen and his grandson.


Crossing the Line (2010), pp. ix-339, is available in hardcover, paperback, or electronic editions from AuthorHouse,, through your local bookseller or prefered on-line retailer.