Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank Lou Sylvre for stopping by today. Please give them a warm welcome.
Title: Falling Snow on Snow
Author: Lou Sylvre
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
Release Date: 12/23/2016
Beck Justice knows holiday sparkle and snappy carols only mask December’s cruel, black heart. He learned that lesson even before he landed on the streets eight years ago, and his recent step up to a tiny apartment and a busker’s permit for Seattle’s Pike Place Market has done nothing to change his mind. But one day in the market, Oleg Abramov joins his ethereal voice to Beck’s guitar, and Beck glimpses light in his bleak, dark winter.
Oleg, lucky to have a large and loving family, believes Beck could be the man to fill the void that nevertheless remains in his life. The two men step out on a path toward love, but it proves as slippery as Seattle’s icy streets. Just when they get close, a misunderstanding shatters their hopes. Light and harmony are still within reach, but only if they choose to believe, risk their hearts, and trust.
Recent Release Spotlight with Lou Sylvre
We are here today to talk about Falling Snow on Snow. What can you tell us about it?
Let me take just a second first to say thank you very much, Prism Book Alliance, for hosting me on my tour.
This book is purely a love story. For those who are familiar with my other books, they might expect some suspense or mystery, but this story doesn’t go there. Beck and Oleg are vastly different individuals with a few things in common, including first and foremost musicianship, and also their Seattle location, and loneliness. But that takes different forms for the two men; Beck has stopped thinking about love at all, most of the time—in his situation it’s hard enough just paying the bills and feeding himself, his cat, and an old crow that lives on his rooftop. Oleg tries to believe he’s looking for love, but in truth he knows he’s never going to find it doing what he’s doing. The way their paths cross and re-cross to bring them together in the midst of an unusually snowy Seattle December might seem magical, and maybe it is.
Please tell us more about our main characters.
Beck Justice is in his early twenties, tall and strong, and he has recently secured a very small studio apartment in Seattle’s University district after eight years homeless. He pays for rent and groceries for himself and his cat, Parcheesi, by performing as a busker at Pike Place Market. He’s an accomplished guitarist, but finds himself miserable, playing trite Christmas music to please shoppers, when he personally loathes December and its holidays. He believes he’s lost faith in humanity, and sees in their festive activities only commercialism and show. But he may be less jaded and more compassionate than he is willing to admit.
Oleg Abramov, a little younger than Beck, and slighter of stature, immigrated to the U.S. from Russia with his family as a very young child. He is the youngest child by nine years in a large and loving and very musical family to whom he is very dear, treasured not only for his beautiful voice, but for his American ways. They love their Olejka no less for being gay, but they worry about some of the choices he makes as he tries to fill an empty spot that nevertheless plagues him. He knows he’s looking for love in the wrong way, but hopes he’ll recognize real love when at last he finds it.
What about Falling Snow on Snow makes you the proudest?
The characters themselves are what make me most proud of the story—meaning the way they revealed themselves to me as I was creating the novella, and who they turned out to be—compassionate, resilient, loving men. I also believe I was able to get down onto the page the essence of their musical natures, both the darkness and sparkle of winter, and something I’m going to call “a Seattle feel.”
What one story made you lose sleep as a kid?
For some reason I’ve never been able to figure out, my parents took me to see “The Haunting,” which was based on Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House. I was terrified by it. I don’t remember not sleeping or having nightmares, but I must have.
What part of a new story comes to you first? Characters? Plot? A scene? A theme? Or does it vary from book to book?
Almost always the characters. In this case, a street musician, who then evolved into a busker at the market. But the answer is a little more complicated than that. Most of the time, the characters, when they appear, already have a story they want told.
Do you have a character in your head that you have yet to write a story for?
Yes. Many. Although truthfully, for most of them I’ve started the story and not finished it. One in particular is a 19th century farmer’s son in France who doesn’t know he is the first male galeanthrope in his family line in many centuries. A Galeanthrope is a were-cat; in this man’s case, the cat in question is the European wildcat, and the wilder parts of his family are resident in the German high fens.
How important are secondary characters to your story telling? Do you actively try to have women characters in your M/M to balance the male focus of the MCs?
They are important, essential. Some of the characters that intrigue me the most are secondary, and their actions affect the direction of the story. And, yes, many times those important characters are women. An example in Falling Snow on Snow is the character Larishka, who is Oleg’s oldest sister. In the Vasquez and James series, Margie, an older woman is present in a meaningful way in every story, and Ruthie is somewhat of a savior for Luki in the novella Yes. But I don’t ever set out with the goal of creating a female character to fulfill some kind of formula, they just come along naturally and weave themselves into the story. That said, I can’t imagine writing a story without women present in some way. M/M romance is, for me, rooted like any other genre in the reality of the human condition. And that condition includes the presence of women.
If you could be any Disney character who would you be, and why?
Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean. Because he looks rather inefficient, but in reality he’s super-slick. Plus he has the best lines, and goddammit, for such a messy pirate he’s darned good-looking.
If you could be one of your characters who would you be and why?
This answer changes from time to time, but I think right now, as we’re in December, I’d be Oleg Abramov, from Falling Snow on Snow. I love his personality, capable, quiet, and practical, but with an underlying strength and a wild streak. I’d aspire to his musical talent, which is in his very DNA. And to be enveloped in love and warmth as he is with his family, to have such deep traditions and yet such freedom to be unique, and to have a shiny new sexy romance going on…
If you had to be a cat, dog, or a rat, which would you choose and why?
I’d be a cat. Because they’re impossibly perfect creatures. Just ask any cat you see, and they’ll tell you the same.
Favorite lollipop flavor and which character in a fave book would you like to see suck on that sucker?
Raspberry is my favorite flavor of the moment, and damn I don’t think I’d complain if I had to watch Kai Gracen, from Rhys Ford’s series, suck on that that thing.
What are you reading right now and what is next on your to-be-read list?
I’m reading three books right now:
The Quantum Rules by Kunal K Das (nonfiction about how the principles of quantum physics apply to human life, as we are, after all, made from the stuff of the universe.)
Hexbreaker by Jordan L. Hawk
Winter Kill by Josh Lanyon
Probably next on my TBR list, though competing many, many other books:
Buchanan House series by Charley Descoteaux
Rapid Fire Time:
- Salt or Pepper? Pepper
- Pickup Truck or Sedan? Pickup truck
- Mr. Bean or Leslie Nielsen? Leslie Nielsen
- Paddle or flogger? Flogger
- Peanuts or Cashews? Cashews
- Tardis or DeLorean? DeLorean
- Light saber or a Sonic screwdriver? Light saber
- Windows or Mac? Windows
- Rock or Country? Rock
- Handcuffs or Rope? Rope
- Sex or Chocolate? Sex
- Harry Potter or Lord of The Rings? Lord of the Rings
- Shifters or Vampires? Vampires
- Red Heads or Blondes? Red heads
- Kirk or Picard? Picard
- Dogs or Cats? Cats
- Sausage or Hamburger? Sausage
- Butterfly or Lady bug? Butterfly
- Tattoos or piercings? Tattoos
- Porsche or Prius? Porsche
- Favorite flower? Wild rose
What are you working on? What is next?
I have a long-ish novella cowritten with Anne Barwell, Sunset at Pencarrow, that has been accepted by Dreamspinner and should be out summer 2017, which means it will need work on edits soon. It’s a contemporary romance set in New Zealand as part of Dreamspinner’s World of Love collection. I just submitted the sequel to A Shot of J&B, so I’d still have to call that a WIP. It’s contemporary romance/suspense entitled Chasing Perfect, the second of three books featuring Jackie Vasquez and Brian Harrison in the Vasquez Security—The Next Generation series, a spinoff from the Vasquez and James series. I’m hoping for a good word from the publisher soon (fingers crossed and all). I’ll begin working on book three very soon. And last (for the moment), Anne Barwell and I are finally getting back to working on a book we actually started a couple years ago, The Harp and the Sea. It’s a Scottish historical set in the 17th and 18th centuries, with elements of war and magic, and a sweet-hot romance between a borderer and a highlander.
About the Author
Lou Sylvre lives and writes on the rainy side of Washington State, penning mostly suspense/romance novels because she can’t resist giving her characters hard times but good love. Her personal assistant is Boudreau, a large cat who never outgrew his kitten meow, and he makes a point of letting her know when she’s taken a plot tangent too far. Apparently an English major, he helps a lot, but Lou refuses to put his name on the byline. (Boudreau invites readers to give their feedback as well!) When Lou isn’t writing, she’s reading fiction from nearly every genre, romance in all its tints and shades, and the occasional book about history, physics, or police procedure. Not zombies, though—she avoids zombies like the plague unless they have a great sense of humor. She plays guitar (mostly where people can’t hear her) and she loves to sing. She’s most often smiling and laughs too much, some say. Among other things and in no particular order, she loves her family, her friends, the aforementioned Boudreau, his sister George, and their little brother Nibbles, a chihuahua named Joe, a dachshund named Chloe, and a slew of chihuahua/dachshund puppies. She takes pleasure in coffee, chocolate, sunshine, gardens, wild roses, and every beautiful thing in the world.
December 16 – MM Good Book Reviews (An interview with Beck Justice.)
- December 21 – Oh My Shelves (A Little Love for Oleg Abramov.)
- December 22 – Alpha Book Reviews
- December 23 – Prism Book Alliance
- December 23 – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
- December 27 – Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy
- December 28 – Love Bytes
- December 30 – Dreamspinner Press Blog
- December 31 – Aisling Mancy
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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