Author Interview – Drama Muscle by Joe Cosentino

Interview with Joe Cosentino, author of Drama Muscle, the second Nicky and Noah mystery/comedy/romance novel published by Lethe Press

Please welcome back Joe Cosentino to the Purple Rose Tea Room. Joe, you’ve become a regular.

A regular what?

At the Tea Room. 

Yes, I love it here, the purple peacocks on the wallpaper, the purple silk fans, the purple teapots, the eggplant appetizers on purple plates, the scent of lavender, and of course the purple roses everywhere. The only thing missing are the purple M&Ms.

We’ll get that for next time.

I’ll hold you to that.

Just hold me. Kidding! We don’t want to start any rumors.

Speak for yourself. Let the rumors fly!

Back to the interview. Your Dreamspinner Press novellas (An Infatuation, A Shooting Star, A Home for the Holidays, and The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland) were well reviewed. 

The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland doesn’t release until January 27.

Think positively. What do you say to people who loved them and might be surprised that the Nicky and Noah mysteries are quite different? 

You might like a blond guy one day and a ginger guy the next.

How did you know?

I know. It’s the same thing with books. I’d ask readers who liked my romance novellas to give Drama Queen and Drama Muscle a try. Like I did with seaweed (when my New Age friend invited me to dinner and I was starving), they may acquire a different taste.

At a past visit, you told us about Drama Queen, the first Nicky and Noah mystery. Was that well received?

Before that book was released, my mother said to me, “People actually read your books?” Hm, I wonder if Stephen King’s mother asked him that? Thankfully my mother read it and loved it, as did my faculty colleagues at my college who kidded me that if they ticked me off I would murder them in the novel. The readers seemed to really enjoy the humor, guessing whodunit, and falling in love with Nicky and Noah as they fell in love with each other. Reviewers called Drama Queen hysterically funny farce, Murder She Wrote meets Hart to Hart meets The Hardy Boys, and a captivating whodunit with a surprise ending. One reviewer said it was the funniest book of the year! Who am I to argue? In Drama Queen college theatre professors were dropping like stage curtains and amateur sleuths/college theatre professors Nicky and Noah had to use their theatre skills, including impersonating other people, to figure out whodunit. When the ebook reached eighteen on the Amazon bestsellers list in its category and the paperback and audiobook (with all twenty-four roles played by Michael Gilboe) sold like tickets to Cats after the Tony Awards, it was time for another Nicky and Noah mystery.

Why did you set the series in a college university? 

As a college professor/department head, I have always been aware that colleges are rife with mystery, romance, and humor. In each book Nicky and Noah eavesdrop, seduce, role play, and finally trap the murderer, as pandemonium, hilarity, and true love ensue for a happily ever after ending—until the next book. Can’t you just see Matt Bomer as Nicky, Neil Patrick Harris as Noah, and me as Martin Anderson (the theatre department head) in the TV version?

Who can I play?

The Playwriting professor in Drama Queen.

Is she sexy?

Very, but she gets murdered.

Figures. I like how the college (Treemeadow) is named after its founders, a gay couple, Tree and Meadow. Why did you set the second novel in the Bodybuilding Department?

Isn’t it obvious? I have always been fascinated with bodybuilders. The concept of eating protein every two hours, lifting weights for three hours a day, shaving every body part, spray tanning, and posing in tiny gold trunks is amazing to me. Not to mention the muscles. When watching a bodybuilding competition on television (okay, I admit it), I noticed the link between bodybuilding and theatre. Since I work out every day—

You do?

Okay, I know it’s hard to believe. That’s one of the reasons (you can guess the other) I am enamored of the real bodybuilders who are so big they don’t even need to iron their shirts.

Tell us a bit about the storyline of Drama Muscle, the current Nicky and Noah mystery?

In Drama Muscle Nicky and Noah don their gay Holmes and Watson personas again to find out who is murdering musclemen in the Bodybuilding Department. In the novel Nicky is directing bodybuilding students in Treemeadow College’s annual Bodybuilding competition on campus. Bodybuilding students and faculty drop faster than barbells until Nicky figures out the identity of the murderer, as well as Noah’s secret revolving around Van Granite, one of the bodybuilding professors. Noah’s hysterically funny parents visit from Wisconsin and are drawn into the action, and Nicky and Noah reach a milestone by the end of the novel.

A milestone?

I’ll never tell.

Okay, I have to go here. Nicky is described as having an enormous manhood. Does that help him solve the murders?

It doesn’t hurt. Well, maybe it does. Hah. Nicky has to flirt his way into some places to get certain information, so his handsome face, muscular body, and huge penis are definitely assets. Even more, however, Nicky and Noah use their theatre skills, including playing other people, to get clues. Most of all, Nicky uses his smarts, always fine assets in an amateur detective. Nicky has such amazing wit, perseverance in the face of adversity, and smarts. I love his sense of determination in not only nabbing the murderer, but also getting his man—Noah. Nicky knows what he wants and how to get it. He is genuinely concerned for others, and he wants to help them. He also has no problem taking on the role of hero. Finally, he is a one-man man, and Nicky is proud to admit that man is Noah Oliver. However, my favorite character in book two is Noah’s mother who is devoted to her son—almost as much as she’s devoted to her camera! I also love how Noah’s father is an amateur sleuth like Nicky. As they say, men marries their fathers.

Nicky is of Italian-American decent, like you. Is that a coincidence?

Not at all. I come from a very funny Italian family. I use that in a great deal of my writing, though my mother swears nothing I write about actually ever happened. When I complained to her about working all day at my college and writing at night, she replied, “Just think how hard you’d have to work if you had a real job.”

She’s a pip. Speaking of pips, Noah is eight years younger than Nicky. Does that present a conflict in their relationship?

People who say age is only a number are lying. Age always comes up. Thankfully, Nicky and Noah handle it, like everything else, with great humor, style, and love.

How do you think up all the clues, red herrings, plot twists and turns, and surprises in the novel?

I learned from the best! I’ve read every Agatha Christie novel and play many times. She is a genius at outlining when and where to give the reader what information. I love the inversion in her books, where she uses sleight of hand to lay out all the information, but not in a straight forward manner. The reader becomes the sleuth to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. I also learned a lot about creating funny quirky characters from Armistead Maupin, another amazing writer—like you!

Awwww. You have another mystery series, the Jana Lane mystery series.

Yes, I created a heroine who was the biggest child star ever until she was attacked on the studio lot at eighteen years old. In Paper Doll (Whiskey Creek Press), 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. Forced to summon up the lost courage she had as a child, Jana ventures back to Hollywood, which helps her uncover a web of secrets about everyone she loves. She also embarks on a romance with the devilishly handsome son of her old producer, Rocco Cavoto. In Porcelain Doll (releasing March 15 from The Wild Rose Press), Jana makes a comeback film and uncovers who is being murdered on the set and why. Her heart is set aflutter by her incredibly gorgeous co-star, Jason Apollo. In Satin Doll (not yet released from The Wild Rose Press), 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. She also embarks on a romance with Chris Bruno, the muscular detective. In China Doll (not yet released from The Wild Rose Press), Jana heads to New York City to star in a Broadway play, enchanted by her gorgeous co-star Peter Stevens, and faced with murder on stage and off. Since the novels take place in the 1980’s, Jana’s agent and best friend are gay, and Jana is somewhat of a gay activist, the AIDS epidemic is a large part of the novels.

 

What’s next for you as a writer?

Nine Star Press is publishing my two novels that take place at a gay summer resort on the Jersey Shore: Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back and Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward.

You are certainly prolific. 

It gives me more opportunities to visit you.

Double awwww. How can readers contact you? 

I love to hear from readers at http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

On that note, thank you again Joe Cosentino for visiting the Purple Rose Tearoom. Until the next time…

DramaMusclecover

DRAMA MUSCLE (a Nicky and Noah mystery)

a comedy/mystery/romance novel by JOE COSENTINO from Lethe Press

Paperback: novel
Publisher: Lethe Press
Language: English
Cover Art: Denny Minonne
Cover Design: Inkspiral Design
ISBN-10: 1590215664
ISBN-13: 978-1590215661
Release date: January, 2, 2016

Purchase Links

http://www.lethepressbooks.com/store/p353/Drama_Muscle%3A_A_Nicky_and_Noah_Mystery.html

http://www.amazon.com/dp/1590215664/

2015NewAbout the Book

It could be lights out for college theatre professor Nicky Abbondanza. With dead bodybuilders popping up on campus, Nicky, and his favorite colleague/life partner Noah Oliver, must use their drama skills to figure out who is taking down pumped up musclemen in the Physical Education building before it is curtain down for Nicky and Noah. Complicating matters is a visit from Noah’s parents from Wisconsin, and Nicky’s suspicion that Noah may be hiding more than a cut, smooth body. You will be applauding and shouting Bravo for Joe Cosentino’s fast-paced, side-splittingly funny, edge-of-your-seat entertaining second novel in this delightful series. Curtain up and weights up!

Praise for DRAMA QUEEN, the first Nicky and Noah mystery by Joe Cosentino from Lethe Press:

“Without doubt the funniest book I have read this year, maybe ever” “brilliant” Three Books Over the Rainbow

“I cannot stop laughing. Drama Queen is Hardy Boys-meets-Murder She Wrote-meets-Midsummer Murders, with a side of parodic, farcical, satire.” “Who-dunits don’t come more whodunnity than this.” Boy Meets Boy Reviews

“I’m hoping that this is just the start for Nicky and Noah. If Jessica Fletcher could have so many murderers in Cabot Cove, why shouldn’t the same hold true for Treemeadow College?” Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Reviews

“This fast-paced, hilariously funny, entertaining novel will have you on the edge of your seat as you try to figure out who-dun-it!” Joyfully Jay

“a murder mystery, a comedic romp, an investigative caper, and a love story all rolled up into one nifty little novel” The Novel Approach

“The tangled weave of murder mystery and other mysteries comes to a startling conclusion that is both satisfying and mind boggling.” MultitaskingMomma

“I am not used to reading books that make me snigger out loud, but in Drama Queen Joe Cosentino has struck a great balance between his use of tongue in cheek humour and a compelling mystery which we want to see solved.” Divine Magazine

“Nicky and Noah are two sexy leading characters who conduct the investigation in this comedic caper with wit and style.” Vance Bastian Reviews

“Cosentino does a wonderful job of writing a mystery that keeps the reader guessing right up until the end.” Barron Owens Reviews

“I love this story, just the right mix, of fun, hilarity and mystery in the mix. The storyline is fresh and well thought out, and the dynamic of the characters is through the roof! Bike Book Reviews

“The author clearly knows of what he speaks on all matters theater, and the kind of authentic details he brings to the table in terms of characters and staging makes this immensely entertaining.” Love’s Last Refuge Reviews

“Joe Cosentino has brilliantly done it again! His latest novel, Drama Queen, is the most fascinating mystery of all time. I loved the laugh out loud moments and the crazy fast-paced plot. Readers will instantly be drawn into Joe Cosentino’s stunning mystery. I recommend this novel to readers worldwide and look forward to reading the next adventure by this talented writer.” Danielle Urban, Universal Creativity, Inc.

2015NewExcerpt

As the ethereal sound of horns parted the heavenly clouds, the young gods and goddesses appeared in a ray of white light. Standing as strong as the stone columns behind them, the deities displayed stunning muscles, colossal beauty, and mammoth ambition housed in the smallest and most seductive of white garments. Lightning flashed as they formed a resilient line and each struck their first flawless pose. Zeus was dark-skinned and as powerful as thunder. Ganymede at his side had skin of white porcelain and a clever stare. Hercules and Adonis were the perfect blend of masculine vigor and physical splendor. Athena was a gorgeous, olive-skinned warrior, and Aphrodite a lovely, fair-skinned temptress. Achilles watched them all, vowing to be victorious in the end.

“Good work, everyone!”

That was me, Nicky Abbondanza, Professor of Directing at Treemeadow College, a white-stone Edwardian-style private college in the quaint and picturesque village of Treemeadow in the equally quaint and picturesque state of Vermont. As inscribed on the two bronze statues at the college’s entrance, the college’s name comes from its founders, Harold Tree and Jacob Meadow. Tree and Meadow were madly wealthy, madly generous, and madly in love. The old gents would no doubt be proud to know that Noah Oliver (Professor of Acting) and I have become a current generation couple at Treemeadow College. That’s not to say Noah and I look anything like our college’s founders. We aren’t made of bronze for one. We wear dress shirts, slacks, and blazers in the fall season rather than heavy dark suits. Also, the Treemeadows were small, thin, scholarly types. Noah and I are both tall. I am of the dark hair, long sideburns, Roman nose, pumped body (thanks to the gym on campus) variety. Oh, there’s one other small thing. Well, it’s not really small. To the delight or horror of my past boyfriends, I have a nine-and-a-quarter-inch penis—flaccid. Luckily, Noah is delighted and totally open (pardon the pun) to new adventures. Noah has luxurious curly-blond hair, batting blue eyes, and the warmest heart in New England. His body is firm and smooth, but not toned as he never goes near the gym—until now!

Each year the top students in the Bodybuilding Department compete in a contest to be named the Top Toned Tan Trojan at Treemeadow (Try saying that three times fast). Actually, the real name is Treemeadow’s Annual Bodybuilding Competition. The winner receives an enormous gold cup, and more importantly, the year’s college tuition free. Given the rising cost of tuition at Treemeadow, this is no lightweight matter (pardon the pun again).

Bodybuilding Department Head Professor Brick Strong asked my Theatre Department Head, Martin Anderson, if Noah and I could use our theatrical expertise to add a dramatic flair to this year’s bodybuilding competition. Since I was not directing a play that semester, Martin agreed to give Noah and me release time, thereby changing our mantra from “Let’s put on a show” to “I’m gonna pump you up.” That led to Noah and me hauling lighting, smoke, sound, and set equipment, along with a number of skimpy Greek period costumes, from the Theatre Department building to the Physical Education building. The plan was that I, as a directing professor, would direct the production, and Noah, as an acting professor, would work with the student-athletes on stage presence for their individual poses.

“Okay everyone, Professor Oliver will take it from here.” I stepped aside and leaned against the gym wall.

Noah flicked back his gorgeous blond locks and took my place in front of the students like a new king taking the throne after a revolution. Sounding delectably butch, he said, “Let’s take a little time to discuss each of your characters. The Greek period was a—”

“That’s the period we’ve selected for the competition in terms of characters, set, and costumes,” I said.

Noah smiled in my direction.

I think Noah and I are the perfect couple. “Rodney, we know that your character, Zeus, was the father of gods and men—” Rodney Towers was tall, dark, and massive with muscle. “—which is why your toga has a thunderbolt on it,” I said.

Noah stiffened.

“I’m always happy to help,” I said.

“So I see.”

“But Professor Oliver is totally in charge now. So everyone, please listen to Professor Oliver,” I said.

“Thank you.” Focusing back on Zeus, rather Rodney, Noah said, “The Greek gods in mythology were part god and part human—”

“Which is why I selected this motif for the competition. You all have human emotion, but your strength and powers are supernatural.”

“Right,” said Noah with a tight jaw.

I folded my arms across my chest. “Professor Oliver is really good at working on character development, so pay close attention to him.”

Noah took in a deep breath. “And the Greek gods were quite amorous—”

“With both sexes,” I said. “Zeus and Ganymede were just one pair of famous lovers who influenced the arts.”

“Excuse me, everyone.” Noah put a hand on my shoulder and ushered me to a corner of the gym. “Nicky, I appreciate your help, but—”

I put my arm around Noah. “You don’t need to thank me. I love you, and I am always here to help you.”

“Well can you please…stop?”

“Did I say something wrong?” I asked dumbfounded.

“I would like to be able to finish a sentence! Will you let me do that?”

“Of course.”

“Thank you.”

“I won’t say another word,” I said as we walked back to the students.

“Promise?” Noah whispered in my ear.

“Of course.” I looked at my watch. “You should move the rehearsal along, since there’s lots more to do.”

2015NewAbout the author

Amazon Bestselling author Joe Cosentino wrote Drama Queen and Drama Muscle  Nicky and Noah mysteries (Lethe Press), An Infatuation, A Shooting Star, A Home for the Holidays, The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press), Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back (Nine Star Press), Paper Doll (Whiskey Creek Press) and Porcelain Doll (Wild Rose Press) Jana Lane mysteries, and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). 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. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming novels are Drama Cruise Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), Satin Doll and China Doll Jana Lane mysteries (Wild Rose Press), and Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward (Nine Star Press).

connectwiththeauthor

Web site: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JoeCosentinoauthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoeCosen

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4071647.Joe_Cosentino

Amazon: Author.to/JoeCosentino

DramaQueencover

Author Interview and Excerpt – A Home for the Holidays by Joe Cosentino

AN INTERVIEW WITH JOE COSENTINO

author of A HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS, a holiday novella from Dreamspinner Press

Welcome back to the Purple Rose Tea House, Joe.

My pleasure, Charlie. I love visiting with you. I’m such a fan of your books.

Aw, thank you!

And you remembered my favorite, vanilla rooibos tea!

We try to please. I can’t believe you’re back so soon with another release. You’re quite prolific.

I know! My friends tell me I write books faster than they can read them.

Can you give us a little recap of what you’ve written so far this year?

Dreamspinner Press published my In My Heart e-book novellas, An Infatuation and A Shooting Star. They are loosely based on my high school and college years respectively. May I brag a moment?

Sure. If not at the Purple Tea House, where?

So many readers told me those two novellas changed their lives. Books Laid Bare Boys wrote of An Infatuation: “I really loved this book and having an ending that made me laugh and cry at the same time is testament to the brilliant writing.” Lovebytes Reviews called A Shooting Star “unbelievably beautiful” and “a masterpiece.” GGR Reviews said it was “a masterclass in fiction writing.” Now it’s my turn to blush. Actually, the e-books did so well that Dreamspinner Press is publishing them together as a paperback releasing late March 2016. I am breaking the news here.

I’m honored.

Dreamspinner Press is also publishing my The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland e-book novella of witty and romantic gay fairytales. They include my spin on Cinderella, Goldie Locks and the Three Bears, Pinocchio, Jack and the Beanstalk, and the Snow Queen.

That sounds like fun.

They were great fun to write. That releases in February 2016.

And you also write mysteries.

Like you! Yes, my Nicky and Noah mystery series from Lethe Press is a farcical, gay, cozy, who-dun-it. Okay, I’m going to brag again.

Go for it.

Drama Queen is often on the Amazon Bestseller List in its category. Boy Meets Boy Reviews said it was like a farcical gay “Hardy Boys-meets-Murder She Wrote-meets-Midsummer Murders.” “Without doubt the funniest book I have read this year, maybe ever,” said Three Books Over the Rainbow. In Drama Queen theatre college professors are dropping like stage curtains in the Edwardian style, quaint Treemeadow College (named after its founder/gay couple Tree and Meadow). 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 to use his theatre skills (including playing other people) to solve the case, while he directs a murder mystery onstage. Complicating matters is Nicky’s intense crush on Assistant Professor of Acting, gorgeous Noah Oliver, the prime suspect in the murder. In Drama Muscle (releasing 2016) 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 (releasing later), 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. Drama Queen is available as an ebook, paperback, or audiobook performed by the talented Michael Gilboe who plays all twenty-four characters. Like me, he is a college theatre professor, and perfect for this audiobook. I want Matt Bomer and Neil Patrick Harris to play Nicky and Noah in the film versions. (I’ll play Martin Anderson the Theatre Department Head.) Can you arrange that?

I’ll ask Matt and Neil the next time we go out clubbing.

Thanks! I also have a mystery series, the Jana Lane mysteries, with straight leading characters and gay supporting characters. I created a heroine who was the biggest child star ever until she was attacked on the studio lot at eighteen years old. In Paper Doll (Whiskey Creek Press), 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. Forced to summon up the lost courage she had as a child, Jana ventures back to Hollywood, which helps her uncover a web of secrets about everyone she loves. She also embarks on a romance with the devilishly handsome son of her old producer, Rocco Cavoto. In Porcelain Doll (coming in 2016 from The Wild Rose Press), Jana makes a comeback film and uncovers who is being murdered on the set and why. Her heart is set aflutter by her incredibly gorgeous co-star, Jason Apollo. In Satin Doll (coming in 2016 from The Wild Rose Press), 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. She also embarks on a romance with Chris Bruno, the muscular detective. In China Doll (coming in 2016 from The Wild Rose Press), Jana heads to New York City to star in a Broadway play, enchanted by her gorgeous co-star Peter Stevens, and faced with murder on stage and off. Since the novels take place in the 1980’s, Jana’s agent and best friend are gay, Jana is somewhat of a gay activist, and the AIDS epidemic is a large part of the novels. Readers’ Favorite called Paper Doll “a masterpiece of a mystery,” and Fresh Fiction said Paper Doll is “a superbly crafted mystery.” I want Brooke Shields for Jana in the films. (I’ll play her agent, Simon Huckby.) Can you arrange that too?

Sure, I’ll give Brooke a ring over the holidays. Speaking of the holidays, you’re visiting today to tell us about your new holiday short novella just released from Dreamspinner Press. Everyone loves a good gay holiday story.

As the expression goes, “Don we now our gay apparel!”

Good one.

Thanks.

Tell us about A Home for the Holidays. How did you come to write this short story?

Like Kunta Kinte charting his roots, my spouse and I dipped into our savings—and dipped into the Dramamine, and booked a flight and bus tour from the US to Rome, Naples, Venice, Assisi, Lake Como, Milan, Florence, the Amalphi Coast, Pompeii, Tuscany, and Lake Maggiore. We were exhausted, but we had the vacation of a lifetime seeing the most gorgeous architecture, natural resources, and views of any of our trip. We also ate delicious food and reveled in the art, history, and beauty (noticing all the statues were of very muscular, naked men). The people were warm and friendly as was the weather. However, there was no site more gorgeous, magical, and romantic than the Island of Capri. Upon arriving back in the US, I decided to write a romantic story taking place in Capri.

What was so special about the island of Capri?

While on the boat ride to the Marina Grande, the sight of the enormous cliffs sitting majestically on the water literally took our breath away. From the funiculare (cable car) we marveled at the stunning views of the island below and Mt. Vesuvius in the distance. At the Piazetta (main plaza) we boarded an island bus that zoomed around harrowing, tight corners like a car in a Fun House. We travelled to Via Krupp in the southern part of the island, and we walked through what Italians call “the villas of the rich and famous,” underscored by the sparkling turquoise sea below. We swam in gorgeous white sand beaches surrounded by artistic white stone formations like Marina Piccola. When we arrived at Mt. Solaro, our guide told us it was highest point on the Isle of Capri, five hundred and eighty-nine meters above sea level. As we looked out at the fog, the sun came up and the wind blew the vapors of fog upwards, crowning the clouds, and revealing stunning views of the Bay of Naples, the Amalfi Coast, and the mountains of Calabria in the distance. As we looked out over the turquoise water, white mountains, and azure sky, I felt like I was in heaven. However, the most magical of all was the Grotta Azzurra (the Blue Grotto). As our boat went through the tiny portal of the expansive cave, my breath was taken away by the water’s brilliant shades of iridescent sapphire and emerald from the sun’s reflection on the water in the cove. Capri also had the most amazing restaurants and shops on the water’s edge. And the people somehow all seemed beautiful and sensuous.

You’ve convinced me. I’m booking my trip. Tell us about the characters in your story?

Bobby, a young, Italian American law student, travels to Capri to meet his quaint Italian relatives. Though they get off to a rocky start, he falls in love with his handsome, muscular, sexy Italian third cousin, Paolo. Their relationship with highs and lows and some captivating surprises is the core of the novella. Like Harold in An Infatuation and Jonathan in A Shooting Star, Bobby is sweet, sensitive, and smart. As a law student, he has buried his head in his books. As the novella begins, he is ready for an adventure—and ready for first love. Like Mario in An Infatuation and David in A Shooting Star, Paolo is handsome, muscular, charismatic, and like many people in Italy, much more interested in love than in work. He is also a gifted artist. Unlike Bobby, Paolo is very experienced in matters of the heart.

What’s the theme of your story?

Don’t ever be afraid to take a chance on love. And strike while the iron (and hormones) are hot.

Does it have a HEA? 

It sure does. 

It sounds great. Why is the book a short novella rather than a novel?

It’s a little holiday gift to my readers.

How did you handle writing the love scenes?

Lovemaking is a part of life, so it makes sense to include love scenes in novels. The love scenes in my books are pretty tame. I have been told they are sweet, sexy, and touching.

Does the book have your signature touch of humor? I’m thinking Principal Ringwood from An Infatuation and Professor Katzer from A Shooting Star.

Both of whom I want to play in the movies. Yes, A Home for the Holidays has lots of it, especially from Bobby’s mother and Paolo’s grandmother who are both hysterically funny.

I’m sold. What are you writing now?

A new series of novels set in a gay beach resort at the Jersey Shore called COZZI COVE. Though I hide under a beach umbrella due to my fair skin, I love the beach!

You’re making me tired. As a college professor/department head, how do you have the time to write?

I write at night after my spouse has gone to bed. I have a beautiful cherry wood study with a fireplace, huge desk, bookcases, and window seat. My mother asked me, “Don’t you have anything better to do than write at night?” I wonder if Shakespeare’s mother asked him that? Hah.

How long does it generally take you to write a book?

About three months.

Well, it has been such a delight to have you visit today, Joe. Please come back in February with The Naked Prince and other Tales from Fairyland, Porcelain Doll, and Drama Muscle.

I sure will. As always, you have been a terrific host, and I thank you for having me.

My pleasure. Any final words to the readers?

I love hearing from readers. They can contact me at: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com.

After reading A Home for the Holidays, people have said they’ve taken a little trip to Capri and had the romance of a lifetime. I hope readers will pick up this short novella. It’s a lot cheaper than a trip to Italy, and is bursting with the sights, scents, sounds, tastes, and romance of the magnificent island of Capri!

homecover

A HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS

by JOE COSENTINO

a HEA holiday short novella published by Dreamspinner Press

e-book $3.99 Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | All Romance eBooks | Barnes & Noble

ISBN: 978-1-63476-536-7
Cover Art: Paul Richmond
Words: 15,000

2015NewAbout the Book

Bobby McGrath’s Christmas trip to the beautiful Italian Island of Capri to meet his eccentric, extended family offers stunning views—none more stunning than his third cousin, Paolo Mascobello, a real stocking stuffer. As the two young men embark on a relationship, Bobby, a driven law student, learns to relax and bask under the old Italian moon, and Paolo realizes there’s more to life than a frolic on the beach. For the two to find everlasting amore, Paulo must overcome his fear of commitment and learn to follow his dreams, and Bobby must get his wish for happily ever after. “Reading this little holiday treat is like taking a romantic trip to gorgeous Capri, Italy!”

2015NewExcerpt

Upon entering my room, I noticed Lucia had unpacked my things into a large mahogany wardrobe out of C. S. Lewis. Exhausted from my trip, I stripped off my clothes, leaped onto the gigantic, canopied four-poster bed, and slept until I felt a firm nudge on my shoulder. As I opened my still jet-lagged eyes, I wasn’t sure if I was dreaming or awake. Standing next to my bed was the most gorgeous man I had ever seen. About my height and age, his wavy chestnut hair framed piercing sapphire eyes, a straight nose, and full red lips. Wearing a skintight button-down red shirt, black pants, and black loafers, he gave Michelangelo’s David a run for his florin. To say his body was strong was like saying the Catholic Church had a little wealth and power. His taut, perfectly shaped muscles sprouted additional muscles of even greater magnitude. Bulging shoulders led to mountainous pectoral muscles, a narrow waist and hips, and a prominent lump between his sculpted thighs. His skin was olive-colored and so smooth it appeared as if he had no veins in his body.

“Mama said you should come down for lunch.”

Covering my rapidly growing erection with my thigh, I responded in a daze, “Who are you?”

He spoke perfect English. “I am Paolo.”

Next to Paolo, even with a swimmer’s body, I felt incredibly white and skinny. “Hello, Paolo. I’m Bobby. I think we’re related.” As I rose to get dressed, Paolo seemed to check out my body, or was that wishful thinking?

“Your grandfather and my grandfather were cousins.”

Doing the math quickly, I said, “So that makes us third cousins?”

“I guess it does.” He shook my hand. It felt warm and comforting. “We look nothing alike.”

I laughed at the understatement. “No.”

“Is this your first time in Italy?”

“Yes.”

“Do you like it here?”

“Yes.”

“Do you answer every question with ‘yes’ or ‘no’?”

“No.” I felt like a teenager at his first dance.

Paolo shrugged his massive shoulders. “You better get down to the dining room. Mama doesn’t like to hold lunch.”

Once dressed in a light blue sweater and dark blue pants, I said, “I don’t know how to get to the dining room.”

He smiled. “Follow me.”

2015NewAbout the author

Amazon Bestselling author Joe Cosentino wrote An Infatuation, A Shooting Star, A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press), Drama Queen the first Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), Paper Doll the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). 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, Charles Keating, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming releases in 2016 are The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press short stories novella), Porcelain Doll the second Jana Lane mystery (Wild Rose Press), and Drama Muscle the second Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press).

Web site: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JoeCosentinoauthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoeCosen

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4071647.Joe_Cosentino

Amazon: Author.to/JoeCosentino

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Praise for Joe Cosentino’s In My Heart novellas, AN INFATUATION & A SHOOTING STAR, from Dreamspinner Press:

“unbelievably beautiful” “a masterpiece” Lovebytes Reviews

“as Joe Cosentino proves time and time again, with his wonderful writing and storytelling ability, love will prevail, and you will smile from ear to ear.” Kathy Mac Reviews

“a master class in how to write short fiction (or any fiction). Joe Cosentino has provided a work that will leave you thinking and wanting to savor and re-read it again and again.” GGR Reviews

“Like an onion, Joe Cosentino’s stories have layers.” “For those readers looking for something a little bit different – dare I say unique? For those readers who like to laugh. For those readers who appreciate the nuances of people and the way each character is different. For those readers who want to read a damn good story – check out this author. I’m glad I did.” “A truly fabulous read.” Boy Meets Boy Reviews

“This story just blew me away.” Cathy Brockman Romance/MM Good Book Reviews

“From the beginning I was enthralled and couldn’t wait to finish the book.” Inked Rainbow Reads

“really grabs you and tugs at your emotions” “unique and enjoyable.” Nautical Star Books

“It turned out exactly how I wanted it to.” BFD Book Blog

“This is polished prose at its best. Intelligent writing, a thought-provoking plot and characters befitting the theater genre” “one of my favorite reads this year.” Love’s Last Refuge Reviews

“Don’t miss this one friends, it is a heartfelt story magical in the telling! Thanks Joe for putting your heart on the page for us to savor!”
Bike Book Reviews

“It’s unusual for me to get sucked into a book in the first chapter but it grabbed me early and I read the whole thing in one day”.

Nautical Star Books

“There were times I laughed and then there were times I cried…unforgettable.” Multitaskingmomma Reviews

“I really loved this book and having an ending that made me laugh and cry at the same time is testament to the brilliant writing.” BooksLaidBareBoys

“The author executed his storyline with a marvelous precision that would be the envy of many authors. He draws the readers into the lives of his characters, they become real and in turn, their emotions becomes yours.” “If you can only afford to buy one more book this year, buy this one.” Three Books Over the Rainbow Reviews

Blog Tour, Excerpt, and Giveaway – Jinxed by Sandrine Gasq-Dion

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AboutTheBook

JinxedFSTITLE: Jinxed

SERIES: The Rock Series #2

AUTHOR: Sandrine Gasq Dion

PUBLISHER: Skull Blaster Publishing

COVER ARTIST: Kellie Dennis

LENGTH: 52,000 words

RELEASE DATE: October 30, 2015

BLURB: Jinx Jett is a rock superstar. As such, the hunky Skull Blasters drummer thoroughly enjoys the many perks of willing groupies, earning him a reputation as the band slut. Making it big and scoring hot women is something Jinx never expected. There’s a little voice in the back of his mind constantly reminding him of how he used to be — shy, overweight and acne prone. One night in a gay bar turns life upside down when Jinx runs into Jayden Dempsey, a kid he’s been fantasizing about since giving him his autograph at a mall. Long-held insecurities keep Jinx from fully committing to anyone, and he may lose Jayden if he can’t put his past behind him.

Jayden Dempsey always wanted out of his life in small-town Alabama. When his parents kicked him out after he told them he was gay, Jayden decided the time was right to move on. He crosses the country to try out for ‘Singers!’, a show that propels unknowns to stardom. In a twist, producers choose him and three others as winners and form a boy band called London Boys.This season, the show brings Jayden and the guys back for the finale. Surprise! The contest’s heavy metal finalist will be singing with Skull Blasters.

Jinx and Jayden’s initial meeting doesn’t go so well, and Jayden’s stunned when the guy he’s crushed on for years turns out to be a total jerk. It doesn’t stop him from falling into Jinx’s arms every time they’re alone, but Jayden didn’t sign on for one nighters. He wants Jinx Jett, baggage and all.

Can a former teen outcast put rejection behind him and embrace the acceptance standing right in front of him? How much will one boy bander put up with from his rock idol before enough is enough? Can they make it work? Or are they jinxed in love?

Excerpt

Oh fuck.

“I thought…” Jayden blinked and shook his head.

“Are you all right, Jinx?” Achilles asked sharply.

“I’m fine.”

“Ma’am? Could you button your blouse, please?” Achilles addressed the woman with no expression on his face.

I walked around Arielle and approached Jayden. He backed up, still shaking his head.

“Jayden…” I reached out to him.

“No.” Jayden lifted his chin. “Don’t worry about it. I just wanted to make sure you were okay.”

He turned and ran down the corridor and I started to follow, but Achilles gripped my bicep and held me back. Arielle walked past us, straightening her shirt.

“Maybe next time?” she cooed, completely oblivious.

No and just … no. God, was I so wrapped up in Jayden that I couldn’t even function with women? Seemed that way.

Achilles dragged me into the corridor and shut the bedroom doors behind me. He turned to face me and I saw anger in those cool eyes.

“What?” I said in defiance. “This is who I am.”

“Bullshit,” he snapped. “It’s who you used to be. Jayden was worried you’d been drugged or something so he came and found me.”

My mouth dropped open in surprise. I’d never heard Achilles speak that forcefully. His brows were furrowed and his glare went right through me.

“Don’t play with people’s emotions, Jinx. That’s not you,” he continued.

“How the fuck do you know who I am?”

“I’ve been watching you. I know more than you think, Jinx. Jayden sees you, the real you, not the guy you show everyone else. Either let him go, or reel him in ─ but don’t fuck with his head.”

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BuyLinks

Amazon US

Amazon UK

AuthorBio

AuthorPicBest-selling author, Sandrine (Sandy) was born in Inglewood, California. Raised by “Old School” French parents, she later moved to Tucson, AZ. It was there that writing became a hobby. Always told she had a great imagination, Sandy wrote short stories for her friends in High School. In college, she took more writing classes while working on her Criminal Justice degree, but it wasn’t until a soap opera caught her eye that she got involved in male on male romances. On the advice of a friend, Sandy dipped her toes into the world of M/M Romance. Sandy takes the writing seriously and has had countless conversations with gay men as well as hours of research. She’s been involved with the military in one way or another for over twenty years, and has a great deal of respect for our men in uniform. She’s traveled the world, but has finally returned to Arizona.

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TourSchedule

November 2: Bike Book Reviews || Hearts on Fire

November 3: Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

November 4: Carly’s Book Reviews

November 5: Cia’s Stories || Jackie’s Book Reviews

November 6: Wicked Faeries Tales And Reviews

November 9: Drops of Ink

November 10: TTC Books and More || Eyes on Books

November 11: The Novel Approach || Nautical Star Books

November 12: MM Good Book Reviews

November 13: Gay Media Reviews || Cathy Writes Romance

November 16: Jessie G Books

November 17: Love Bytes Reviews

November 18: Bayou Book Junkie || Diverse Reader

November 19: Rainbow Gold Reviews

November 20: The Purple Rose Tea House || World of Diversity Fiction

November 23: RJ Scott

November 24: Sue Brown || My Fiction Nook

November 25: Daydream Believer Book

November 26: Loving Without Limits

November 27: Foxylutely Books || Lustful Literature

November 30: Multitasking Mommas Book Reviews

December 1: Man2ManTastic

December 2: Gale Stanley || Prism Book Alliance

December 3: Louise Lyons || LeAnn’s Book Reviews

December 4: A Celebration of Books || Elisa – My reviews and Ramblings