Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank C.B. Lee for stopping by today.
Title: Seven Tears at High Tide
Author: C.B. Lee
Publisher: Interlude Press
Cover Artist: C.B. Messer
Genre: Contemporary, Fantasy, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Young Adult
Kevin Luong walks to the ocean’s edge with a broken heart. Remembering a legend his mother told him, he lets seven tears fall into the sea. “I just want one summer—one summer to be happy and in love.” Instead, he finds himself saving a mysterious boy from the Pacific—a boy who later shows up on his doorstep professing his love. What he doesn’t know is that Morgan is a selkie, drawn to answer Kevin’s wish. As they grow close, Morgan is caught between the dangers of the human world and his legacy in the selkie community to which he must return at summer’s end.
Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing C.B. Lee, author of Seven Tears at High Tide.
Hi C.B., thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.
Hello, thank you for having me here today! I’m C.B., a bisexual woman from California and a first generation Asian American. I am so excited to write more about characters whose backgrounds are like my own. My current novel is Seven Tears at High Tide, a story set in a sleepy seaside town in central California, and it follows Kevin and Morgan, who come together because of Kevin’s wish for a summer love. There’s magic and adventure and romance and I hope readers will enjoy it.
Do you have pictures that you use for your characters? Can you share them with us?
Here’s a still from the book trailer that was created for the novel by the amazing Tifferini Productions. (http://tifferini.com/)
You can also visit the trailer at:
What kind of book would you like to write that people would see as a huge departure for you?
I think many of my friends think most of my work is lighthearted or romantic, and while I do love those themes, I’ve always had a love of post apocalyptic scenarios and dystopias, and would love to write something that tackles some of the serious issues brought up in those genres.
Have you ever killed a character? Was it traumatic for you? If you haven’t killed one, would you ever consider it?
I have, in the few short stories where I’ve written character death— it’s usually “offscreen,” and the focus is on how the other characters grieve and the aftermath of the death, their examining of the relationships, who is left, basically a character study and focus on the grieving process. It’s emotionally difficult, especially when you’re putting yourself in the character’s shoes, and I have experience with loss myself that I draw from, to give to the character’s experiences, but it’s also cathartic in a way. I think writing death scenes can be traumatic, but for me writing some of these difficult life moments really helped me personally, to hash out how I felt about something by working through different character’s eyes— where something was no longer happening to me, but to this other character, in a situation I could control the outcome.
There’s also a story where I do explicitly write a death— and describe it— where the main character basically watches someone they love die, and there’s nothing they can do about it. But then later that person comes back to life, so I’m not sure this qualifies as “killing a character,” but that’s a story for another time.
Favorite location you’ve ever written about?
Oh gosh, I’m quite in love with the setting for Seven Tears. I’ve visited it a few times, and in actuality, the Piedras Blancas light station looks out over a vast stretch of land before it meets the mountains, just a lonely bit of coast. It was so much fun imagining what kind of town could fit in here, right next to San Simeon, to fill it with people and houses and little shops and diners and boats and fishing stations, what kind of stories could be told here. The rookery is quite amazing, too, I highly recommend if anyone is travelling to stop by and see the seals there. I feel like watching these amazing animals in their natural habitat is breathtaking; it’s one of the few places where the mundane and the fantastic blur together.
What’s your favorite season and favorite activity for that season?
It’s a draw between summer and fall! I love both these seasons— particularly the transition between the two, the way the stilling hot days turn crisp and cool. I love hiking in any season, really, but summer is a particular favorite time for me. I live in California, so it’s not a huge change in temperature between the seasons year round, but that palpable feeling in the air when it’s summer, that lingering excitement for the potential of the day. Some of my favorite summer trails are along the coastal bluffs— catching the sunset as it falls below the horizon, dipping below the waves, canyons and cliffs catching fire with color.
As for fall— again, it’s not so much that changing of scenery where I live, leaves don’t drop or turn into a riot of oranges or anything, as beautiful it is, but the days get shorter and cooler and there’s an air of starting anew, people starting school and new projects. Hiking in the fall for me means heading up in the mountains, the sound of bubbling brooks coursing along rocks, streams full of fresh rainwater from the season, damp leaves on the trail, a cool wind at my back and a view of the city below.
They wander into the house, wipe their wet feet on the welcome mat, climb up the stairs and giggle as they pass Ann’s bedroom. She’s dancing with her headphones on, oblivious to the open door, swaying to the beat.
In Kevin’s bedroom, he quickly scrounges up some clean shirts and shorts. “Here, you can wear this,” he says, handing an outfit to Morgan and then ducking into his bathroom to change. He peels off the wetsuit and hangs it up in his shower, then leans his surfboard carefully against the wall, eyeing the crack. He’ll have to fix it tomorrow.
When he returns, Morgan is holding onto the wet board shorts, wearing the outfit Kevin gave him. He looks curiously at the rock collection prominently displayed on Kevin’s bookshelf. “These are beautiful,” he says.
“Here, I’ll take that,” Kevin says, holding out his hand for the bedraggled board shorts to hang in his shower. He’s certain now that they’re the ones from the lifeguard’s lost and found. Kevin’s starting to worry that Morgan doesn’t have any other clothes, but he doesn’t know how to bring it up. Money can be a touchy subject.
Morgan holds Kevin’s favorite specimen, a piece of green olivine on basalt. Kevin once almost convinced Ann it was an avocado roll—it certainly looks like one, bright green speckled with sesame seeds, wrapped in dark seaweed.
“That’s from Mexico. My family went on vacation to Baja last year, and I got that out of an old volcano.” He tries his best to describe the sweltering heat and the excitement of finding geodes and cracking them open with a hammer. Morgan listens in rapt silence as Kevin talks about the find and tilts the olivine so it catches the light. He sets it back in its spot behind its label, slowly so as not to disturb the other specimens, and Kevin is quietly pleased with Morgan’s careful appreciation.
“I changed my mind,” Kevin blurts out.
“I do want this to be a date. For us, to do that,” he says, blushing. “I like you. A lot.”
Morgan’s face breaks into a bright, happy smile.
“And what do we do differently, for this to be a date?”
Kevin can feel the heat on his cheeks. “We can hold hands, if you like. Um, or kiss, if you want to. But we don’t have to do anything you don’t want to. I’m fine just hanging out and watching a movie with you.”
Morgan tilts his head and steps closer. “I want to,” he says, not specifying what, but Kevin knows immediately.
It’s just the quickest brush of lips, but Kevin feels it all the way to his toes. A warm curl of excitement blooms throughout his body, and Morgan’s mouth is warm and wet against his. It’s not like any kiss he’s had, chaste and sweet and over in a second, and yet his heart is still pounding after Morgan leans back. He’s close enough for Kevin to be able to count the eyelashes dark against his cheek.
Morgan ducks his head and asks, “Was that okay?”
Kevin’s a little dazed, but he finds his voice. “Yeah. Yeah, that was great.”
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About the Author
Tour Dates & Stops:
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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