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Title: Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings, Cozzi Cove book 4
Author: Joe Cosentino
Publisher: NineStar Press
Cover Artist: Natasha Snow
Genre: Contemporary, Gay Romance, Humor/Comedy, Menage/Poly
Release Date: 03/27/2017
Welcome back to the romantic and magical place called Cozzi Cove, seven guest bungalows on the New Jersey Shore. This summer, Cal and his new husband Michael, along with sister, Taylor and her wife, Carla, prepare for the first in the next generation of Cozzis. To add to the action: Cal finds his great-grandfather’s diary, exposing a shocking surprise; Michael and Taylor weigh new job opportunities that could take them far away from Cozzi Cove; red-letter Christian and new houseboy, Billy Dean, gets his wish when meeting Jesus and John at the cove; summer guest, Nijad, can’t decide which sibling he prefers—Annabel or Andrew; and Jonathan, an occult enthusiast, encounters a sexy vampire. As usual, nothing is as it seems when romance blossoms once again at Cozzi Cove. What secrets, mysteries, and passions lie waiting to unfold? Find out in Book Four of the Cozzi Cove series.
Joe Cosentino Interviews His Cover Character Billy Dean Boyd
Joe: Welcome, Billy Dean, the new houseboy in my Cozzi Cove beach series.
Billy Dean: How ya’ll doing?
Joe: Since the readers can’t see you, I’ll tell them you are a college student who plays football and is starring in your college play in the title role of Li’l Abner. You are tall, very muscular, with blond hair and crystal blue eyes.
Billy Dean: Heck, I’m blushing.
Joe: You’re originally for Mobile, Alabama, and you moved to the New Jersey shore on a football scholarship and to work for handsome Cal Cozzi and his husband, Michael, at Cozzi Cove, a string of seven guest bungalows.
Billy Dean: You forgot to tell everyone I have a chastity card vowing to love no man but Jesus until the day I marry.
Joe: But that all changed once you got to the romantic and magical place called Cozzi Cove.
Billy Dean: It sure did. Faster than a rabbit facing a lawn mower. And since you were a theatre major like me, I like how the Cozzi Cove books are chock full of humor, drama, romance, and lots of surprises.
Joe: You joined in on the fourth book. How do you like Cozzi Cove?
Billy Dean: It’s hotter than a bull whose butt is on fire in a pepper patch. And what a series!
Joe: When I was a kid, my sister and I spent our summers at my aunt and uncle’s bungalow on the New Jersey shore. We swam and made sandcastles at the beach, waded in the bay, played miniature golf, ate salt water taffy, and jumped up and down on trampolines until we (literally) saw green. As you know, all those places and experiences are in the novels set in the fictitious place I call Cozzi Cove, a gay resort of eight bungalows in a private cove on the Jersey Shore. The main beach and boardwalk are only a mile away. It’s a place I love to visit again and again.
Billy Dean: How did the readers and reviewers like the first three Cozzi Cove beach novels?
Joe: They loved them, even though you hadn’t arrived in Cozzi Cove yet. After Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back (TBR Pile Favorite Book of the Month/Rainbow Award Honorable Mention), Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, and Cozzi Cove: Stepping Out released, readers and reviewers praised their romantic, humorous, dramatic, mysterious style, and interwoven captivating stories. Many readers begged for a return trip to Cozzi Cove, so I wrote Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings. As with the first three books, romance is everywhere on Cozzi Cove, and nothing is what it seems. It was like visiting good old friends to further develop the characters in book four. And with you joining the cast, readers will love this new book even more!
Billy Dean: Shouldn’t we tell any new readers about the cove?
Joe: Go for it.
Billy Dean: Cal’s bungalows on Cozzi Cove are set on a stretch of cove formed when softer rocks were worn away by the sun and salty water faster than the harder rocks surrounding them. This created a bay of turquoise water shielded by large rocks in the distance and smaller rocks near the water’s edge. It’s even prettier than the mountains back home.
Joe: Care to tell the readers a bit about the storyline of Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings?
Billy Dean: Cal and Michael open the bungalows for the fourth summer. There are five interwoven stories about Cal, his family, his houseboy—that’s me, and his guests.
Joe: Tell us more about your boss, the main character, Cal Cozzi, and the developments in book four.
Billy Dean: Cal is a handsome and sexy ex-football player. In book four, Cal finds his great-grandfather’s diary, exposing a shocking surprise. After getting married in book three, Cal and Michael are expecting a baby in book four! And Cal’s sister, Taylor, drops in from Paris as usual. As a type A personality and top one-percenter, the world revolves around her, which makes her hysterically funny. She is also incredibly devoted to Cal. And she loves getting under Michael’s skin. Taylor’s wife, Carla, is the surrogate for Cal and Michael’s baby. And Michael and Taylor weigh new job opportunities that could take them away from Cozzi Cove.
Joe: I’ll never tell. How about the guests in book four?
Billy Dean: Nijad, a bisexual guest, can’t decide which sibling guest he likes better: Annabel or Andrew. And an occult enthusiast guest, Jonathan, encounters a sexy vampire at the cove.
Joe: As usual, nothing is what it seems as secrets are revealed and romances blossom in the magical place called Cozzi Cove. Billy Dean, what do you think is the moral of the story?
Billy Dean: Don’t you know? You wrote it?
Joe: I think the moral is that we are all connected to our past, present, and futures.
Billy Dean: I think we’re all as connected as a hound dog and a tick.
Joe: Or a conservative politician and a Super Pack.
Billy Dean: Which one of the characters was the most fun to write?
Joe: Your southern expressions and Annabel’s British expressions cracked me up.
Billy Dean: Wow! I’m so surprised and flattered that I don’t know whether to check my backside or scratch my watch.
Joe: Of course Taylor is always hysterically funny. Her wife, Carla, gives Taylor a run for her money in book four. I laughed out loud many times while writing her.
Billy Dean: Which character was the most difficult to write?
Joe: Guest Vlad was difficult with his vampire persona, but as a huge fan of the old Dark Shadows serial, I was up to the task.
Billy Dean: Are you Cal? Is Michael your spouse? And is Taylor your sister?
Joe: Cal is more like the person I’d love to be. One of the guests in book four, Jonathan the tax auditor, is a great deal like me. I want to play him in the movie. I’m also like Harold (An Infatuation), Jonathan (A Shooting Star), and Bobby (A Home for the Holidays). Stuart (An Infatuation) and Barry (A Shooting Star) are based on my spouse. Taylor in Cozzi Cove is very much like my sister, though my sister won’t admit it—in public.
Billy Dean: Who’s like me?
Joe: You’re unique, Billy Dean.
Billy Dean: Will there be more Cozzi Cove novels? Please don’t leave us dormant in your brain!
Joe: If I can keep waking up at 3 am with new ideas, there will be more novels. So get busy and start whispering ideas in my head. I love writing quirky and endearing characters in scenes full of emotion with lengthy dialogue. By the way, I wrote a screenplay version of the first novel. Come on, producers, make me an offer! Couldn’t you see Matt Bomer as Cal? Actually, I could see Matt Bomer as anybody in anything. Now let me ask you, Billy Dean, how did you do with your love scenes in the book?
Billy Dean: I liked them just fine, thank you.
Joe: Lovemaking is a part of life, so it makes sense to include love scenes in novels. I have been told the scenes are character-driven, sweet, and sexy.
Billy Dean: Joe, do ya’ll react like a reader when you read your own books?
Joe: Totally. I just reread Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings and laughed, cried, gasped, and felt romantic. I was shocked at the ending of each storyline.
Billy Dean: It takes me a week to write a letter to my pappy back in Alabama. How long does it generally take you to write a book?
Joe: About three months working evenings and weekends. Jumping up awake in the middle of the night, I jot notes on my nightstand with a new book idea. The next day I begin a biography for each character and eventually a plot summary. I write the first draft, then show the second draft to my spouse for his notes. The third draft goes to the publisher. The fourth is after notes from the publisher’s editor. I thought I was asking the questions. How do you feel about the readers of the Cozzi Cove beach series?
Billy Dean: They have great taste. Y’all clearly crave being swept away by the stories and becoming part of the novel. And ya’ll relish beautiful locations and captivating characters. Y’all also love humor, romance, mystery, and a good surprise ending. Joe, tell us about your other gay romance releases.
Joe: In My Heart/An Infatuation & A Shooting Star (Dreamspinner Press/Rainbow Award Honorable Mention) are loosely based on my high school and college years respectively. They were so popular as individual e-books, Dreamspinner Press published them together in one paperback. I got my own anthology! I still receive comments from readers that those stories made them laugh, cry, feel romantic, and changed their lives. They say your first is your most precious. Just ask my mother about my sister.
A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press) is my cherished holiday short novella about an American law student who, as I did, takes a trip to the romantic and gorgeous island of Capri, Italy, where he embarks on a relationship with his captivating third cousin.
The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press) is my gay take on my favorite beloved fairytales like Cinderella, Goldie Locks and the Three Bears, Pinocchio, Jack and the Beanstalk, and The Snow Queen. Joel Leslie did the incredible audiobooks.
Billy Dean: And about your two mystery series.
Joe: My Nicky and Noah mystery series (Lethe Press) are farcical, gay, cozy, who-dun-its. In Drama Queen (Divine Magazine Readers’ Favorite LGBT Mystery Novel and Humorous Novel) theatre college professors are dropping like stage curtains. With the inept local detective more interested in getting into Nicky’s pants than solving the murders, it is up to well-endowed Directing professor, Nicky Abbondanza, and Acting Professor Noah Oliver to use their theatre skills (including playing other people) to solve the case, while Nicky directs a murder mystery onstage. In Drama Muscle (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention) Nicky and Noah have to use their theatre skills to find out why musclemen are dropping like weights in the Physical Education department while Nicky directs the Student Bodybuilding Competition. In Drama Cruise Nicky and Noah go on a cruise to Alaska, and discover why college theatre professors are going overboard like lifeboats while Nicky directs a murder mystery dinner theatre show onboard ship. In Drama Luau (releasing June 1), muscular male hula dancers are dropping like grass skirts as Nicky directs the Luau show. It’s up to Nicky and Noah to figure out whodunit and why.
In the Jana Lane mysteries (the Wild Rose Press), with straight leading characters and gay supporting characters, Jana Lane was the biggest child star ever until she was attacked on the studio lot at eighteen years old. In Paper Doll Jana at thirty-eight lives with her family in a mansion in picturesque Hudson Valley, New York. Her flashbacks from the past become murder attempts in her future. Jana ventures back to Hollywood, which helps her uncover a web of secrets about everyone she loves. In Porcelain Doll Jana makes a comeback film and uncovers who is being murdered on the set and why. In Satin Doll Jana and family head to Washington, DC, where Jana plays a US senator in a new film, and becomes embroiled in a murder and corruption at the senate chamber. In China Doll Jana heads to New York City to star in a Broadway play, where she is faced with murder on stage and off. In Rag Doll Jana stars in a television mystery series and life imitates art on the set. The novels are full of mystery, romance, humor, and theatricality. Since they take place in the 1980’s, Jana’s best friends are gay, and Jana is somewhat of a gay activist, the AIDS epidemic is a large part of the novels.
Billy Dean: But I’m not in any of those books. Ya’ll should read them anyway.
Joe: Well, everyone, Billy Dean and I had a blast. I love hearing from readers! You can contact me at: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com
Billy Dean: So everyone grab your Speedos, suntan lotion, and shades and head back to Cozzi Cove. Cal, Michael, and I have a bungalow waiting just for you. I hope to see you there!
Excerpt of Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings:
A tall young man with golden blond hair stood in the center of the room. He wore shorts that barely contained his muscular thighs, and a pink polo shirt that barely housed his massive pectoral muscles.
“The sign out front said to enter,” he said with a discernable Southern accent.
“This is the first day of our summer season.” Cal offered his hand. “Cal Cozzi.”
The young man’s biceps expanded like melons as he nearly broke the bones in Cal’s hand with his firm handshake. “I’m Billy Dean Boyd.”
“Where you from, Billy?”
“It’s Billy Dean ever since I can remember. I’m from Mobile, Alabama.”
Cal moved behind his desk. “What brings you to New Jersey, Billy Dean?”
“I was looking for a college near New York City. I’m studying theater.”
Cal smiled at Billy Dean’s pronunciation of “thee-aye-ter.”
“But I’m here on a football scholarship.”
Looking at the boy, Cal wasn’t surprised. “I played football professionally.”
“I know. I looked you up on the web.”
“I’m surprised you found anything. My career was short and uneventful.”
“My high school coach back in Mobile used to say, ‘It takes a whole team to play a game.’”
“So you said you’re playing football at college?”
Billy Dean nodded. “But that doesn’t mean my grades aren’t good. I got straight A’s back in high school, and my IQ is one hundred and twenty-one.”
Cal was impressed. “How did you hear about the job?”
“I saw the advertisement on a bulletin board at State.”
Cal sat behind his desk and motioned for Billy Dean to take a nearby armchair. “Why do you want to be a houseboy at Cozzi Cove?”
“My mama and daddy rent out rooms back home. I’ve been cleaning commodes, making up beds, and fetching towels since I was a kid.”
“You’ll need to be here mornings to clean the bungalows and bring fresh towels. Then back again at four in the afternoon for turndown service. Will that work for you?”
“It sure will. I don’t have classes or football practice yet. I’m staying at my dorm since I’m in a play at the college, but we rehearse in the evenings. Except on Wednesday nights when I have Bible study, and Friday nights are prayer meetings, and Sunday nights are services.”
Cal chose his words carefully. “You know this is a gay resort?”
Billy Dean nodded and his golden locks bounced against his head. “I’m gay. That’s another reason this job fits me like biscuits to gravy.”
“And that doesn’t interfere with your religious beliefs?”
“No, sir. I’m a red-letter Christian.”
“A red-letter Christian?”
“Everything Jesus said is written in red in most Bibles. Red-letter Christians only believe those passages. Thomas Jefferson wrote his own Bible with those spiritual words of wisdom. Jesus never said anything against homosexuals. As a matter of fact, anybody who said anything bad about anybody who was different was tore slap up by Jesus.”
Cal sat back in his chair, envisioning Billy Dean leaving religious tracts on pillows and proselytizing to guests.
“Don’t worry,” Billy Dean said, as if he could read Cal’s mind. “I accepted Jesus as my Lord and personal Savior, and He lives in my heart every day, but I’d never tell y’all what to believe or not believe.”
Billy Dean slid forward in his chair. “There is one thing you should know about me, though.” He took a card out of his wallet. “This is my chastity card. I pledged back at my home church to be celibate until marriage.”
Cal smiled at how different Billy Dean was from Connor, the previous houseboy. “That won’t be a problem.”
Billy Dean returned the smile. “Good. Jesus is the only man in my heart.”
Given Cozzi Cove’s aura of romance and Billy Dean’s good looks, Cal assumed that would change quickly.
“The other kids in my play rush out after rehearsals and meet in their dorm rooms to get all hot and heavy. My grampa back home would tell me I’m ‘nuttier than peanut brittle’ for not joining them.”
Cal asked, “What play are you doing?”
“Li’l Abner. I’m the lead.”
Given Billy Dean’s good looks, strapping build, irresistible charm, and Southern accent, Cal wasn’t surprised. He got an honest vibe from the boy, and he was excited about the possibility of Billy Dean unloading the supply truck when it made deliveries to Cozzi Cove.
“To get us started, I cleaned, aired out, and put fresh linens, towels, and bathroom supplies in all the bungalows. Michael mowed the lawns, watered the plants, and cleaned out the hot tub in each one.”
“That’s me,” Michael said as he entered the room.
“Michael’s my husband,” Cal explained.
“I just graduated from State,” Michael added.
Billy Dean sat and stared at them blankly.
After a few moments, Cal asked, “Is there something wrong? Billy Dean?”
Billy Dean came to like a healed coma victim. “Did I fall asleep with my eyes open?”
“I’m not sure,” Cal replied.
“I probably did. I have narcolepsy. Since I was a kid. I doze off briefly without realizing it. Sometimes with my eyes open. Sometimes with them closed. Y’all will get used to it.”
Cal asked, “Isn’t it dangerous for you to drive?”
“I ride a bicycle.”
“How do you play football and act in plays?” Michael asked, clearly having overheard Billy Dean’s interview with Cal.
“It generally doesn’t happen when my adrenaline is high, or right after I take my medicine,” Billy Dean explained.
Cal and Michael shared a concerned look.
“It won’t interfere with my duties here,” he said quickly. “Something else my grampa would tell you is that I work faster than a termite in an old building.’”
Cal smiled. “I really like your expressions, Billy Dean.”
“Thank my grampa. He’s the best. I really miss him.” Billy Dean smiled. “How about this one? ‘I’ll work harder than a bull with his butt on fire in a pepper patch.’”
The three of them laughed. Cal looked into the boy’s crystal-blue eyes and trusted him. “When can you start?”
“Do I have the job?” Billy Dean asked.
Cal looked at Michael who nodded his approval. “Let’s give it a try.”
“Praise the Lord!” Billy Dean said, smiling from ear to ear.
“I probably wouldn’t say that around here,” Michael offered.
“I understand.” Billy Dean shook both of their hands happily. “I can start right now if you like.”
Cal turned to Michael. “Can you show Billy Dean around the supply room and the bungalows, and go over his duties?”
“Sure,” Michael replied.
Cal faced Billy Dean. “Then take some time for lunch, and come back at four o’clock for turndown service. You get paid every Friday the rate on the ad. Any questions?”
“Can I use a bathroom in one of the bungalows?” Billy Dean asked.
“As long as you clean it afterward,” Cal replied.
Michael headed to the front porch. “Follow me, Billy Dean.”
Giveaway: Post a comment about why you think the beach is a romantic and special place. The one that breaks our waves the most will win a gift e-book of Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back, the first Cozzi Cove novel, by Joe Cosentino, published by NineStar Press. http://myBook.to/Cozzi_Cove_BB
About the Author
Bestselling author Joe Cosentino won Divine Magazine’s Readers Poll of 2015 for Best LGBT Mystery Novel, Best LGBT Humorous Novel, and Best LGBT Contemporary Novel of the Year. He wrote the Cozzi Cove beach series: Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back (TBR Pile Book of the Month/Rainbow Award Honorable Mention), Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, Cozzi Cove: Stepping Out, and Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings (NineStar Press); the Nicky and Noah mysteries: Drama Queen (Divine Magazine’s Readers’ Favorite), Drama Muscle (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention), and Drama Cruise (Lethe Press); the Dreamspinner Press novellas: In My Heart/An Infatuation & A Shooting Star (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention), A Home for the Holidays, and The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland; and the Jana Lane mysteries: Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll, and Rag Doll (The Wild Rose Press). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. Joe was voted 2nd Place Favorite LGBT Author of the Year in Divine Magazine’s Readers’ Choice Awards!
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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