Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank Tara Lain for stopping by today.
Title: Tackling The Tight End
Author: Tara Lain
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Genre: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance
A Novel in the Long Pass Chronicles
Everyone wants the best for SCU student and tight end Raven Nez—and they know exactly what that is. Enter the NFL draft, become a big football hero, promote his tribe’s casino, and make a lot of money to help people on the reservation. Just one problem. Raven’s gay and he really wants to work with gay kids. Plus he figures a gay Native tight end will get flattened in the NFL. Then the casino board hires a talented student filmmaker to create ads for the tribal business and asks Raven to work with him. But the filmmaker is Dennis Hascomb, a guy with so much to hide and a life so ugly it’s beyond Raven’s understanding. Still he’s drawn to Dennis’s pain and incredible ability to survive. Captivated by Raven’s stories of the two-spirited and by the amazing joy of finally having a friend, Dennis knows he has to break free from everything he’s ever been taught was good—but that’s a struggle that could kill him and Raven too. Is there a chance for “the great red hope” and the “whitest guy on earth”? A future for the serpent and the raven?
Sometimes the Hardest Are the Best!
Hi everyone! I’m Tara Lain. I write the Beautiful Boys of Romance and today I’m happily celebrating the release of my new novel, Tackling the Tight End. For those of you who’ve been following my Long Pass Chronicles, you may have noticed that it took me a year to get this third book done. The previous book, Canning the Center, came out in December of 2014. BTW, these books are essentially standalone, so you don’t need to have read the previous stories to enjoy this one. Anyway, on to the reason it took me so long. In short – the book was hard for me.
Very often when I’m creating ideas for series, the theme for the third book is hatched a long time before the story is actually written. In the case of Long Pass Chronicles, I submitted Outing the Quarterback as a finished book with short blurbs and synopses for the other two books. Since I had finished book 1 and the main character for book 2, Jamal Jones, was an important secondary figure in that book, I had a very strong idea of what I wanted Jamal’s story, Canning the Center, to be about – a big, powerful NFL center who falls for a drag queen! That book wrote itself right after Quarterback was written.
But the idea for book 3 was a little more removed. I wanted to continue another character from book 1, but most of the strong secondary characters in Quarterback are female – that wasn’t going to work for the main character of a gay (as opposed to lesbian) romance. So I somewhat arbitrarily decided to redeem the villain from Quarterback, Dennis Hascomb. Redeeming villains is always tricky but can be fun. In book 1, Dennis is a very bad guy, so I had to compose a story that somehow justified his deceit and nastiness. In the short synopsis I submitted, he was the central character and he had very evil parents. Just one problem. I don’t love angst, even when I’m writing it, and hanging out in Dennis’s troubled world – troubled me! LOL. When it came time to write Tackling the Tight End, I just couldn’t do it. I asked Dreamspinner if I could write another book I had contracted with them instead, they said yes, and Tackling the Tight End got put on the shelf for a while.
What ultimately saved me was my agent, Saritza Hernandez, who suggested that I switch the book so that Raven Nez, my Native American hero who was to be Dennis’s love interest, became the central character and Dennis became the love interest. That did two great things. It allowed me to delve deeply into the world of Native culture, which fascinated me and made for a story that compelled me. AND it permitted me to keep Dennis’s parents a little more distant, which let me make them even more evil. What resulted was a book that has gone on to become one of my favorites I’ve ever written. I hope you’ll enjoy this tale of the love between two deeply unlikely men – who find the fundamental things that unite them. The serpent and the raven discover that sometimes the hardest tasks are the most rewarding.
Raven laid out paper plates with pizza, two Cokes, and a bowl of potato chips on a box he used for a coffee table in front of the couch. He set them up so that Dennis either had to sit on the floor—not too comfortable, considering it was very worn carpet—or sit beside Raven. Maybe he could get Dennis to relax a little.
The movie started, and Dennis took a bite of cheese and artichoke hearts. He sighed and closed his eyes for a second.
Raven smiled. “Good?”
“Oh yeah. I always have dinner with my parents, which means I never get to eat anything normal.”
“They must really have bought into all that crap about eating together keeps the family together.”
“Yeah.” He pointed at the screen. “Okay, so you know this was partly an homage to the old western serials, right?”
Raven wrote in the air as he said, “Cowboooooys in Spaaaaaace.”
“Exactly. But it goes a lot deeper. It’s a real Biblical epic battle of good versus evil. I mean Luke, right? This is the book of Luke. And the Force. Interesting that most of the ordinary dumb bad guys make fun of the ancient religion, but Darth Vader knows and uses the Force. That’s what makes him so powerful. Darth, of course, is a play on Dark, and all the Darths in the series are the most dangerous villains.”
“Vader is short for invader?”
“I think that’s where it came from, but did you know that vader means father in Dutch?” He laughed. “They probably weren’t so surprised at the whole ‘Luke’s father’ revelation in the Netherlands.”
Dennis leaned forward for a piece of pepperoni pizza just as Raven grabbed for the same one. Their hands touched as they both held the crust. Raven grinned. “If they did this in a movie, you’d probably say it was contrived, right? Could never happen. The director should get a more original idea to get them together.”
“Yeah.” Raven heard Dennis swallow.
“So now that you have us here, director Hascomb, what do you plan to do with us?”
Dennis swallowed again, lifted his thumb, and gently rubbed Raven’s little finger.
Well damn, he’d had a fair amount of sex in his twenty-one years, but nothing had ever dived straight to his dick quite as fast as that gentle caress. “Man, you do it for me.”
“Yeah. That’s no demand or even request. I just want you to know.”
“What’s it like to kiss a guy?”
Their fingers stroked and twined. Nothing else moved if he didn’t count the expanding of cocks. “I don’t know. It’s great. Maybe not that different from kissing a girl. More stubble, I guess.” Raven wiped his other hand across his chin. “But not from me. No beard.”
“I’ve never kissed a girl. I tried to have sex a couple times but skipped the kissing part.”
“Well, hell, man. That means—”
On the screen, the 3-D projection of Princess Leia popped out of the communication device in R2-D2. Dennis stared at their linked hands. “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi—”
Raven joined in. “You’re our only hope.” He reached a hand around Dennis’s head and pulled him closer, then pressed half-open lips to Dennis’s closed mouth. Stroking gently, he persuaded those full pink lips apart and slipped his tongue slightly between. Dennis startled, but Raven held his head just tight enough to keep them in contact, but not so tight as to scare him.
Dennis shivered, made a little gurgling sound in his throat, brought his hands up against Raven’s shoulders, and then—some dam gave way. He dissolved in Raven’s arms, even wrapping his own around Raven’s chest, and oh God, his mouth opened, accepting all of Raven’s tongue. Sweet. As Raven’s tongue slid in, Dennis sucked. Jesus, Raven practically came just from the heat of that suction.
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About the Author
Tara Lain writes the Beautiful Boys of Romance in LGBT erotic romance novels that star her unique, charismatic heroes. Her first novel was published in January of 2011 and she’s now somewhere around book 23. Her bestselling novels have garnered awards for Best Series, Best Contemporary Romance, Best Ménage, Best LGBT Romance, Best Gay Characters, and Tara has been named Best Writer of the Year in the LRC Awards. In her other job, Tara owns an advertising and public relations firm. She often does workshops on both author promotion and writing craft. She lives with her soulmate husband and her soulmate dog in Laguna Beach, California, a pretty seaside town where she sets a lot of her books. Passionate about diversity, justice, and new experiences, Tara says on her tombstone it will say “Yes”
FB Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/taralain
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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