White Nights

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Title: White Nights
Publisher: Del Floria's Press & Samizdat Press
Author(s): Alexi Tesla
Cover Artist(s):
Date(s): April 1993
Medium: print
Fandom: Man from UNCLE
Language: English
External Links: Del Floria's Press
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White Nights is a slash 74-page Man from UNCLE novel by Alexi Tesla.


Summary from the publisher: "The White Nights...it's New York's oldest and most exclusive club. Everyone's heard of it, but it seems no one actually has a membership--or even knows how to go about getting one. All inquiries are politely refused. So what Napoleon Solo would like to know is, if The White Nights is so damn exclusive that even he--of blue blood, impeccable manners, and Veddy Olde Money--can't even get in the door...how the hell did a refugee wharf rat like Illya Kuryakin get a membership? And why won't the snotty Russian invite him along? Illya in black tux and white tie is a sight it shakes Solo up to see and he's dying to find out what goes on behind those black-laquered doors, that could make Illya dress so elegantly and act so strangely. But the Russian won't even discuss it. It is clearly time for Napoleon Solo to begin mixing blacktie with blackmail."

Reactions and Reviews

Awhile back, we were discussing how, for some reason, people wussify one of the characters in any slash couple alot in general and in MUNCLE, specifically. I was just looking through my zines to see which ones I would be willing to resell at Media and came across a MUNCLE zine I forgot. It's a little digest-sized novella called WHITE NIGHTS by Alexi Tesla that is remarkable in it's almost total lack of wussification of Illya. The title refers to the "gentlemen's club" that Illya belongs to and that Napoleon is dying to join. Illya finally relents and Napoleon soon finds out that the one thing that sets this apart from most other clubs--aside from a few members of its clientel--is its "entertainment". It's a nice, kinda kinky, somewhat silly pwp, fairly well written. As I said, it has no traditional wussification of Illya in it. There is one line toward the beginning of the story where Napoleon thinks to himself, "He's widdle, but he's meeean." There was one point that I have to admit that I didn't really buy, though. I can accept the idea that Illya would belong to a club like this. In my sillier moments, I might believe that Napoleon would tackle Illya (they are not lovers at this point) and tickle him to the point of submission. I have a lot harder time in believing Napoleon as Illya's not-yet-lover would blow "baby farts" on Illya's stomach. But maybe that's just me... This zine was published by Del Floria's/Samizdat Press, who also put out at one time the Del Floria's Press MUNCLE gen zines. I do recommend those as well, by the way. They are nominally gen, but very touchy feely. I would warn anyone who has any intention of buying more than one at a time, though: Don't read them one after the other. Each issue contains at least one "Illya dies a slow, horrible death" story which are generally fairly good, but extremely depressing. [1]
I confess to an inordinate fondness for Alexi Tesla's MfU writings. They are like third season episodes on steroids - completely over-the-top in a way that makes me laugh and cringe at the same time - and yet are completely satisfying. She plays fast and loose with canon but somehow manages to keep the guys (mostly) in character. Her blend of explosive sex and outrageous farce is unique. I've not read anything like her fic in any other fandom. One thing is for sure - she had fun writing Napoleon and Illya, and I imagine plenty of readers had just as much fun reading her stories.

When Napoleon discovers that his unsociable, unfashionable and unconnected partner is a member of White Nights, New York's most exclusive private club, he is both astounded and indignant. His competitive nature demands justice and so he puts a lot of energy into pressuring Illya to sponsor his membership. The two engage in a battle of wills for a couple of months, until Illya finally relents and takes Napoleon to the club as a guest. And there the fun begins.

White Nights isn't exactly the type of club Napoleon had envisioned. And what goes on behind those discreetly lacquered doors proves to be a real eye-opener, even for such a sophisticated man. Napoleon is unusually dense about what's going on, in fact, but that's part of the fun of the story.

The heart of the story is an incredibly detailed and incendiary sex scene that is guaranteed to melt a reader into her chair. A 16 page sex scene! Hot hot hot. I'm fanning myself just remembering it. And for all its hotness, it's sweet and tender, too, bringing their suppressed feelings to the surface, extending and completing their relationship.

This author's writing style relies heavily on exaggerating canon beyond the point of cliché, but because she skewers everything in sight it ends up being more funny than painful. Most of the time. Satire, you say? Parody? Not quite. I gave up trying to categorize this writer and her fic. Readers may well be very divided on her appeal; I suspect this is one author you either love or hate. I love her.

White Nights, a slash novel by Alexi Tesla. Digest-size; comb-bound; 74 pages; full page layout with fairly readable serif-style font. Originally published in 1993 by Samizdat Press. Cover is a drawing of St. Basil's, no interior art. This zine is out of print as far as I know. Be grateful if you can find someone willing to share a copy. [2]


  1. In 1995, Michelle Christian posted this review to the Virgule-L mailing list. It is reposted here with permission.
  2. from Partner Mine