Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank JK Pendragon for stopping by today. Please give them a warm welcome.
Title: Junior Hero Blues
Author: JK Pendragon
Cover Artist: Michelle Fairbanks
Genre: Action/Adventure, Alternate Universe/Alternate World, Fiction, Gay, Gay Fiction, Gay Romance, Humor/Comedy, Romance, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Release Date: 11/07/2016
Last year, Javier Medina was your average socially awkward gay high schooler with a chip on his shoulder. This year, he’s . . . well, pretty much the same, but with bonus superpowers, a costume with an ab window to show off his new goods, and a secret identity as the high-flying, wise-cracking superhero Blue Spark.
But being a Junior Hero means that Javier gets all the responsibility and none of the cool gadgets. It’s hard enough working for the Legion of Liberty and fighting against the evil Organization, all while trying to keep on top of schoolwork and suspicious parents. Add in a hunky boyfriend who’s way out of Javier’s league, and an even hunkier villain who keeps appearing every time said boyfriend mysteriously disappears, and Blue Spark is in for one big dollop of teenage angst. All while engaging in some epic superhero action and, oh yeah, an all-out battle to protect Liberty City from the forces of evil.
Welcome to the 100% true and totally unbiased account of life as a teenage superhero.
Hello and welcome to the fourth stop on my blog tour to promote my new YA Superhero book, JUNIOR HERO BLUES! Today I thought I’d go the traditional route and just post a fun excerpt to give a taste of what the book is about.
The excerpt I’ve chosen doesn’t really need much introduction. Suffice it to say that our hero, Javier aka Blue Spark, has been summoned to what he thinks is a jewellery store robbery, but he arrives to find a lot more than he bargained for.
I hadn’t really been given any info by dispatch besides that the incident was a jewelry store break-in, and when I arrived, the alarm was going off already, so that meant the police were on their way. But of course by the time they got here, it probably would have been too late. It was up to me to stop the thieves (if they hadn’t already finished up and left in the time it had taken me to find my mask in the bottom of my backpack), so I jumped down outside the glass doorway and warned all the civilians to take cover, before heading on in.
The thieves were still here, but it looked like they were getting ready to leave. My first clue that something was up was the fact that none of them were holding any loot, besides the head guy, and all he had was a briefcase. The second thing was that they weren’t wearing normal robber attire (not that robbers have a uniform but, you know) and instead they were wearing dark-colored skintight suits that looked a lot like Legion costumes only . . . well, darker. Also, they all had on masks, but not your old-fashioned balaclava-type masks. No, these were molded ones, heavy-duty, doubling-as-face-armor-type masks, like only heroes wear. Well, heroes and villains.
That confirmed my suspicions: these guys were with the Organization. I reached for my watch and subtly tapped the panic button that alerted the Legion that I needed backup. In the meantime, I knew it was up to me to either stop them, or else stall them until some more powerful Legion members could arrive and take them out.
All this happened in about five seconds, of course. Basically I walked in, the tinkly bell on the door went off, the guys inside looked at me, and I pressed the button on my watch. And then the guy with the briefcase turned around and distracted me with his junk.
Okay, you have to cut me some slack here, because one, I am a hormonal teenager, and two, it was, like, right there, and, um, big. And it’s not like I’m not used to seeing guys in spandex and/or spandex-like materials, seeing as I belong to the Legion and everything, but jeez, this guy was really impressive. It was almost obscene.
So at that moment I had about two thoughts in my mind, one of which was Distract them until backup arrives! and the other of which was Holy crap, his bulge, so my first instinct was to distract him by pointing out his penis to him.
I know. Shut up.
“What the hell is that?” I gestured dramatically at his crotch. “That’s not appropriate for children!”
The guy just stared at me, and I’m pretty sure his expression was something like incredulous, although it was hard to tell because, you know, mask. His eyes flickered over me though, and I remembered belatedly that as a superhero in a midriff-baring costume, I was not exactly above the “not appropriate for children” criticism. Also, the way he was looking at me was . . . I don’t know, kind of sexy but in a way that made me feel a bit uncomfortable and squirmy. And angry too.
“Hey!” I said loudly. “I’m talking to you!”
The guy shrugged, seeming a lot more relaxed than his two cronies, and grinned at me. “What’s the problem? I have nothing to hide.”
“Oh yeah?” I flushed under my mask. “Then why are you hiding your face?”
I’m sorry, by the way.
If you went into this thinking that it was a story about one of those epic, always cool heroes with the witty one-liners, who only pretends to be shy and dorky for the sake of his alter ego, you’ve probably realized by now that that is not what you’re getting. I, Javier Medina—or Blue Spark, as I’m known to the citizens of Liberty City—am one-hundred-percent dork, through and through. The mask only makes it worse. So yeah, I apologize. If this isn’t what you’re into, I’d recommend Captain Liberty’s autobiography. Not the current Captain Liberty, though, I’m pretty sure he’s super boring. But the Captain Liberty in the forties was pretty cool and witty. Except that he was kind of a huge raging misogynist. Kendall’s all into the feminist history of superheroes, so I know these things.
What was I talking about? Oh yeah, I was detailing my epic levels of fail.
Well, let’s get on with that, then.
So the guy took a step toward me, and then another. And then he was staring down at me with this dark, evil glint in his eyes, and smiling like a crocodile. “Listen, kid, if you knew what you were dealing with, you’d get the hell out of the way.”
“I know what you are,” I said, pretty bravely in my opinion, considering that the guy was like three times my size. “You’re with the Organization, aren’t you? What’s your name, Evil McBigDick?”
I was stalling here, just so you know. I’m usually a lot more to the point. I think.
Anyway, I must have struck a nerve, because the guy’s smile went away, and he made a little signal to his cronies with his fingers. Then he said, “It’s Jimmy,” and brought his fist up into my stomach, catapulting me into the air and through the glass display window. “Jimmy Black.”
Stupid name for a supervillain, if you ask me.
So I went flying through the glass and it shattered all around me, and there I was lying on the pavement, staring up at the tall buildings and the sky. My stomach hurt pretty bad, and I was trying hard to breathe, and little bits of glass were digging into the bare skin on my back. I know, I know, midriff-baring costume, really, really stupid. But it shows off my abs, and my cool markings (more on those later), and I don’t think it’s fair that only the girl superheroes get to look sexy while fighting crime. Plus it’s not like the rest of my uniform is super heavy-duty. The thing about me is, I’m generally fast enough to get out of the way before taking any blows. And if Jimmy hadn’t been distracting me with his junk, I would have been able to. Okay, that’s probably enough about his junk.
The minute I could actually take half of a proper breath, I sat up to see that my backup had arrived, finally. Two superheroes—I think I recognized Lady Deathquake (awesome name) and Wolfhound—were locked in battle with two of Jimmy’s cronies. But Jimmy himself, not to mention the briefcase of whatever he’d been in the process of stealing, was nowhere to be seen.
Then I spotted him: running down the sidewalk, shoving pedestrians out of the way as he went, and turning down an alleyway. There was no time to alert the other heroes, or call for more backup. I had to follow him.
And there you have it! If you enjoyed, and would like to read more, JUNIOR HERO BLUES is now available here!
Also on this tour I’m giving away 3 $15 Amazon gift cards, so leave a comment with your name email address to be entered to win!
Thanks for reading!
To celebrate the release of Junior Hero Blues, three lucky winners will receive $15 in Amazon credit! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on November 12, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!
About the Author
J.K. Pendragon is a Canadian author with a love of all things romantic and fantastical. They first came to the queer-fiction community through m/m romance, but soon began to branch off into writing other queer fiction. As a bisexual and genderqueer person, J.K. is dedicated to producing diverse, entertaining fiction that showcases characters across the rainbow spectrum, and provides queer characters with the happy endings they are so often denied.
After writing in the romance community for several years, Junior Hero Blues is J.K.’s first book for young adults. Having been very positively affected by the queer books they came across as a teen, J.K. hopes their young adult books can have a similar effect on teens who may have a harder time finding books about people like themselves.
Notable works by J.K. Pendragon include Ink & Flowers, a contemporary romance novel with coming out themes, and To Summon Nightmares, a horror-fantasy that follows the journey of a young trans man into a world of magic and danger. To Summon Nightmares is the winner of the 2015 Rainbow Awards’ Best Transgender Fiction award. J.K. also contributed to Less Than Three Press’s Geek Out: A Collection of Trans and Genderqueer Romance.
J.K. currently resides in British Columbia, Canada, with a boyfriend, a cat, and a large collection of artisanal teas that they really need to get around to drinking. They are always happy to chat, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on twitter @JKPendragon.
Connect with J.K.:
- Website: www.jkpendragon.com
- Blog: www.jkpendragon.com/blog
- Twitter: @JKPendragon
- Tumblr: jkpendragon.tumblr.com
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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