Showing posts with label LGBTQ. Show all posts
Showing posts with label LGBTQ. Show all posts

Friday, January 25, 2019

"The Princess of Baker Street" by Mia Kerick


REVIEW and GIVEAWAY
The Princess of Baker Street
by Mia Kerick

The Princess of Baker Street by Mia Kerick

The Princess of Baker Street by Mia Kerick is currently on tour with Xpresso Book Tours. The tour stops here today for my review, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


For more books by this author, please check out my blog post on The Weekend Bucket List, my blog post on My Crunchy Life, my blog post on Love Spell, and my blog post on The Art of Hero Worship.

Description
“Always wear your imaginary crown” is Joey Kinkaid’s motto. For years, Joey, assigned male at birth, led the Baker Street kids in daring and imaginative fantasy adventures, but now that they’re teenagers, being a princess is no longer quite so cool. Especially for a child who is seen by the world as a boy.
Eric Sinclair has always been Joey’s best friend and admirer - Prince Eric to Joey’s Princess Ariel - but middle school puts major distance between them. As Eric’s own life takes a dangerous turn for the worse, he stands by and watches as Joey - who persists in dressing and acting too much like a Disney princess for anybody’s comfort - gets bullied. Eric doesn’t like turning his back on Joey, but he’s learned that the secret to teenage survival, especially with an absent mother, is to fly under the radar.
But when Joey finally accepts who she is and comes to school wearing lip gloss, leggings, and a silky pink scarf, the bullies make her life such a misery that she decides to end it all. Eric, in turn, must decide who he really is and what side he wants to stand on … though no matter what he chooses, the consequences with be profound for both teens, and they’ll face them for years to come.
Is there a chance the two teens can be friends again, and maybe even more?


Excerpt
Every day’s basically the same—it’s like the lunchtime bullying plan is set in stone, and it’s only the end of September. And it’s way worse than it was last year, even though he sat alone then too. Travis gets to sit at the jock table, seeing as he’s on the county football team. He starts in on Joey as soon as he sets his rear end on the bench and drops his lunch tray onto the sticky table. For Travis, “bullying Josie” is sort of like a bad habit he just can’t kick. But I’m pretty sure he’d say it’s more like a hobby he’s real good at.
“All the way through sixth grade, Kinkaid wore a dress, like, every day after school—I kid you not.” He announces this loud enough for the jocks and the entire hot-girl table, and of course, lonely Joey, to hear. And even though Joey wasn’t hiding that he wore his mom’s purple dress after school when we all played together, blabbing about it makes me feel like we’re ratting him out.
An imaginary knife stabs into my gut and twists around. I try not to squirm and to keep my face blank, but it’s next to impossible because my belly hurts like I’m having a baby.
“You’ve got to be kidding me—he wore a freaking dress?” Miles Maroney is always the first guy to jump in whenever things start getting mean and dirty. “But I betcha Josie looked cute, if you go for gays.”
We all laugh, and I mean all of us.
I laugh even though I don’t want to. Because I still remember how it was: Joey was the Princess of Baker Street, and Travis and Emily and Lily and me all looked up to him as much as middle school kids look up to the guys on the soccer team now. Joey was the neighborhood kid with all the best ideas. None of us cared what he wore out to play—not even Travis.
“What a freaking princess!” yells Noah Mayer, and we all laugh some more because Noah is the starting forward on the soccer team, and we pretty much have to laugh at everything he says when he’s trying to be funny, or he won’t pass to us. Maybe I forgot to pay my brain bill, but I know how shit like this works.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“What a fantastic story. Heartwarming, sad, and brave! I have never read a Mia Kerick book before, but kudos to her for being such a brave edgy writer! This left me definitely wanting to read more.” ~ Wall-to-wall books
“This book tore my heart up in the best ways. […] This book is so beautifully written and so heartbreaking at the same time. […] This is a special book.” ~ DiverseReader
Mia Kerick’s young adult coming of age novel, The Princess of Baker Street, is a beautifully written and compelling story about a transgender teen and her childhood friends. I loved witnessing the story through Eric’s eyes and felt for him as he struggled to keep his awful home situation a secret. While Joey’s story is the dominant theme here, Eric’s tale is equally transfixing, and their interactions make this coming of age novel an unforgettable one. Kerick’s depiction of a transgender teen and the stresses and strains of life both at home and in school experienced by her is right on point. Kerick’s characters are remarkably real, and her storytelling is powerful. The Princess of Baker Street is most highly recommended.” ~ Jack Magnus for Readers’ Favorite
“The story was a perfect portrayal of how things change as children grow older. Their innocence and acceptance is replaced by what adults and society ingrain in them as the ‘norm’.” ~ Shirley


My Review
I received this book in return for an honest review.


By Lynda Dickson
Eric and Joey have been friends all their lives, but things change when they start middle school. Joey defies gender norms and has always been a bit of a princess. Eric decides it’s time to ditch him for a more popular crew, the jocks, which includes Travis, also once Joey’s childhood friend but now his biggest bully. Eric has problems of his own, but Joey takes most of the attention off him and he can hide in plain sight. Eric’s home situation goes from bad to worse, while his relationship with Joey progresses to a whole new level, making it harder and harder for him to remain inconspicuous. Eric must decide which is more important, self-preservation or loyalty. Will he make the right choice?
The story is told from Eric’s point-of-view with flashbacks to his childhood with the other Baker Street kids. His grammatically incorrect narration and conversational tone provide him with an authentic his voice. It’s sad to see how Eric’s mother is physically absent, yet always present in Eric’s mind. He never openly resents her and places so much credence in her quirky sayings, drawing on her words of wisdom whenever he’s in trouble. The author presents Joey as a believable character, giving us a clear and accessible description of both the physical and emotional sides of being a transgender youth. This is a heartbreaking story of two damaged souls who don’t yet realize they are the only ones keeping each other alive. Thankfully, the book ends on an uplifting note. The only problems I had were with characters being called alternately by their first or last names (which can become confusing) and the similarity between Eric’s and Joey’s last names (Sinclair and Kincaid).
Warnings: LGBTQ themes, bullying, attempted suicide, child abuse.


About the Author
Mia Kerick
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children - a daughter in law school, another a professional dancer, a third studying at Mia’s alma mater, Boston College, and her lone son off to Syracuse. She writes LGBTQ romance when not editing National Honor Society essays, offering opinions on college and law school applications, helping to create dance bios, and reviewing English papers. Her husband of twenty-four years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about this, as it is a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on emotional growth in turbulent relationships. As she has a great affinity for the tortured hero, there is, at minimum, one in each book. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with tales of said tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to her wonderful publishers for providing alternate places to stash her stories.
Her books have been featured in Kirkus Reviews magazine and have won Rainbow Awards for Best Transgender Contemporary Romance and Best YA Lesbian Fiction, a Reader Views’ Book by Book Publicity Literary Award, the Jack Eadon Award for Best Book in Contemporary Drama, an Indie Fab Award, a Royal Dragonfly Award for Cultural Diversity, a Story Monsters Purple Dragonfly Award for Young Adult e-book Fiction, among other awards.
Mia Kerick is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.


Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $15 Amazon gift card.


Links

Books featured in this post






Tuesday, October 30, 2018

"The Art of Hero Worship" by Mia Kerick

EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
The Art of Hero Worship
by Mia Kerick

The Art of Hero Worship by Mia Kerick

The Art of Hero Worship by Mia Kerick is currently on tour with YA Bound Book Tours. The tour stops here today for an excerpt and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


For more books by this author, please check out my blog post on The Weekend Bucket List, my blog post on My Crunchy Life, and my blog post on Love Spell.


Description
Saving the one who once saved me.
College junior Liam Norcross is a hero. He willingly, even eagerly, risks his life to save a stranger as a murderous, deranged shooter moves methodically through the darkened theater on the Batcheldor College campus, randomly killing innocent men, women, and children.
The stranger he saves is college freshman Jason Tripp. Jase loses everything in the shooting: his girlfriend, who dies on the floor beside him, and his grip on emotional security. He struggles to regain a sense of safety in the world, finally leaving college to seek refuge in his hometown.
An inexplicable bond forms between the two men in the chaos and horror of the theater, and Liam fights to bring Jase back to the world he ran away from. When Jase returns to school, they’re drawn together as soulmates, and soon Liam and Jase fall into a turbulent romantic relationship. However, the rocky path to love cannot be smoothed until Jase rescues his hero in return by delving into his shady past and solving the mystery of Liam’s compulsion to be everybody’s savior.


Excerpt
I have no doubt who’s on the phone when he allows his trademark sigh. “I’m, uh...just calling to...to...”
“To check in on me?”
“Well, yeah. I guess...something like that.”
“I’m still alive and kicking. And no crazed gunman has taken me out since we last saw each other.” I hope he can hear the smile in my voice, even if it’s fake.
“Well, that’s a step in the right direction.” I’m pretty sure he doesn’t buy my happy-go-lucky tone.
“I want to see you, Jase. And I’m going to Massachusetts on Friday, for a weekend on Cape Cod. I want you to come with me.”
Liam Norcross is the most direct reminder of the worst two nights of my life. “I...I’ve got to work.” It’s not easy to lie to him.
Silence.
“And I don’t think my mom is ready for me to go anywhere yet.”
“’Kay.”
“Plus, I...I don’t think I’d be too much fun to hang out with. I’m not exactly a barrel of laughs these days.”
“Why don’t you let me be the judge of that?”
I want to see him. I need to. I wish he’d plead with me, or insist that I go with him. Order me to do it, the way he did when he forced me to stay safe on the nights we were in so much danger.
“I need to see you, Jase. This...this visit is really more about me than you.” Again, he sighs, and it sounds more pained than I remember. “Will you come with me? Please.”
“When will you pick me up?” All I can see in my mind’s eye are Liam’s arms. So strong and protective and everything I needed...everything I need. For months, all I could see when I closed my eyes was Dom. And now I see Liam.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“… even though this was my first MM I didn't feel out of my comfort zone at all, it was so beautifully written, I might even go so far as to say that I'd read something else of this authors. Its emotionally raw, dark, gritty, and a book that will stay with me for a very long time.” ~ KAT, Kitty Kats Crazy About Books
“This is an emotional read and both characters have a lot to overcome. They need each other more than they realise.” ~ D.M.
“The writing made it easy to love the characters. Liam was the strongest one, always being there for Jason and others, while Jason purely adored the ground Liam walked on. […] Both characters take a journey in self-discovery and I simply loved how their story turned out. If you are a fan of the genre, then you will love this one. Do not miss it.” ~ Lina’s Reviews
“Mia Kerick is the Mistress of writing damaged characters who are faced with very real and very heartbreaking challenges. This book tackles the increasingly common occurrence of mass shootings in places we once thought we were safe and puts Jason, a young man paralyzed with fear, in the hands of one who has a bone-deep need to save.” ~ Jessie G.
“This is an excellent book that drew me in and didn't let up until the last page. Jason and Liam have a untraditional story where two straight men fall in love, it is also unique because they meet during chaos and tragedy while at a theater and a mass shooting takes place. […] I recommend this book highly and all of Mia Kerick's work - her books will take you beyond the typical m/m romance and broaden your understanding and appreciation for the concept of ‘love is love’.” ~ Jaime


About the Author
Mia Kerick
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children - a daughter in law school, another a professional dancer, a third studying at Mia’s alma mater, Boston College, and her lone son off to Syracuse. She writes LGBTQ romance when not editing National Honor Society essays, offering opinions on college and law school applications, helping to create dance bios, and reviewing English papers. Her husband of twenty-four years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about this, as it is a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on emotional growth in turbulent relationships. As she has a great affinity for the tortured hero, there is, at minimum, one in each book. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with tales of said tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to her wonderful publishers for providing alternate places to stash her stories.
Her books have won a Best YA Lesbian Rainbow Award, a Reader Views’ Book by Book Publicity Literary Award, the Jack Eadon Award for Best Book in Contemporary Drama, an Indie Fab Award, and a Royal Dragonfly First Place Award for Cultural Diversity, a Story Monsters Purple Dragonfly First Place Award for YA Fiction, among others.
Mia is a Progressive, a little bit too obsessed by politics, and cheers for each and every victory in the name of human rights. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.


Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $15 Amazon gift card.


Links


Wednesday, September 19, 2018

"Love Spell" by Mia Kerick

GUEST POST and GIVEAWAY
Love Spell
by Mia Kerick

Love Spell by Mia Kerick

Love Spell by Mia Kerick is currently on tour with YA Bound Book Tours. The tour stops here today for a guest post by the author, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


For more books by this author, please check out my blog post on The Weekend Bucket List and my blog post on My Crunchy Life.


Description
Chance César is fabulously gay, but his gender identity - or, as he phrases it, “being stuck in the gray area between girl and boy” - remains confusing. Nonetheless, he struts his stuff on the catwalk in black patent leather pumps and a snug-in-all-the-right (wrong)-places orange tuxedo as the winner of this year’s Miss (ter) Harvest Moon Festival. He rules supreme at the local Beans and Greens Farm’s annual fall celebration, serenaded by the enthusiastic catcalls of his BFF, Emily Benson.
Although he refuses to visually fade into the background of his rural New Hampshire town, Chance is socially invisible - except when being tormented by familiar bullies. But sparks fly when Chance, Pumpkin Pageant Queen, meets Jasper (Jazz) Donahue, winner of the Pumpkin Carving King contest. Chance wants to be noticed and admired and romantically embraced by Jazz, in all of his neon-orange-haired glory.
And so, at a sleepover, Chance and Emily conduct intense, late-night research, and find an online article: “Ten Scientifically Proven Ways to Make a Man Fall in Love With You.” Along with a bonus love spell thrown in for good measure, it becomes the basis of their strategy to capture Jazz’s heart.
But will this “no-fail” plan work? Can Chance and Jazz fall under the fickle spell of love?


Excerpt
“This carousel pumpkin,” nodding at the elegant pumpkin in front of us, I admit the truth before thinking it through, “…may be the best one here.”
This is when Jazz smiles broadly, and I decide his smile is the most honest smile I’ve ever seen. “I carved this pumpkin, Chance. I made it for my little sister.”
I gasp, as I hadn’t expected burly Jazzy to be the Michelangelo of pumpkin carving. “Well, your sister is a very lucky girl.” I smile at him, although I’m confident he’s the guy who is going to take the title of Beans and Greens Pumpkin Carving King away from me.
He grins again, and I fight the urge to pinch his adorbs cheek. I find it a difficult urge to battle. But I admit I have lost nothing this evening. Tonight is a win-win for Chance César. Cuz I met Jazz.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“If you enjoy YA, overly dramatic, sarcastic and sassy, gender-confused and charming … or the quiet and shy, simple boy … Give this one a chance.” ~ Jenny Is My Name
“Chance's willingness to accept his faults and grow into the man that Jazz needed was incredible. The book reminded the reader to always be yourself and never give up hope that things will work out in the end.” ~ Teresa
“Chance is a funny and adorable character who I wish was my best friend in high school. Jazz is cute and sweet and the type of guy I'd totally fall for. Together they are great.” ~ Kathryn M
“This was amazing. It had so many complex and intriguing things going on for these characters. It made me smile. And made me sad. It was all around an amazing story and I loved it so much.” ~ Starwarslover


Guest Post by the Author

The language used in Love Spell is colorful. Which puts it mildly.
Chance calls his BFF Emily the Ms. Merriam-Webster of Improvised Language. In other words, well, she makes up words. After she creates words she uses them constantly and expects Chance to do the same. And he does. Believe me, he does!
And so, for today’s vocabulary lesson, let us focus on three of Emily’s finest words:
Let’s start with POOPATUDE. You know when you’re just not your cheerful self - you’re feeling mean and pissed-off, and maybe slightly sarcastic. Well, that’s because you’re displaying classic poopatude, a nasty attitude.
In a sentence: I’ve had enough of your poopatude, dude - do I have to tickle you to get you to smile? (I even added a rhyme for you.)
Next, let’s look at FRET-LIBERATO. Chance makes a guess at this new Emily-word when she introduces it to him, and he gets close but isn’t right on the nose. Fret-liberato is simply a creative term for relieved.
You’d like to hear it used in a sentence?
I can’t explain to you my fret-liberato when Mrs. Mansfield decided against giving us the pop quiz … I was so not prepared for it!
And finally, STUPI-BOGGLED. Chance finds himself feeling this way quite regularly. Stupi-boggled is a combination word - stupified combined with mind-boggled.
Kate was stupi-boggled to learn that her BFF was her Secret Santa - she’d never expected it!
Thanks for paying such close attention to today’s vocabulary lesson. I hope you’ll check out my re-release of this funny, crazy, sentimental story, Love Spell. You will laugh. You probably won’t cry, but there is remote chance of it. And you’ll be stupi-boggled by the lengths to which Chance goes to capture the heart of the boy of his dreams.


About the Author
Mia Kerick
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children - a daughter in law school, another a professional dancer, a third studying at Mia’s alma mater, Boston College, and her lone son off to Syracuse. She writes LGBTQ romance when not editing National Honor Society essays, offering opinions on college and law school applications, helping to create dance bios, and reviewing English papers. Her husband of twenty-four years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about this, as it is a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on emotional growth in turbulent relationships. As she has a great affinity for the tortured hero, there is, at minimum, one in each book. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with tales of said tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to her wonderful publishers for providing alternate places to stash her stories.
Her books have won a Best YA Lesbian Rainbow Award, a Reader Views’ Book by Book Publicity Literary Award, the Jack Eadon Award for Best Book in Contemporary Drama, an Indie Fab Award, and a Royal Dragonfly First Place Award for Cultural Diversity, a Story Monsters Purple Dragonfly First Place Award for YA Fiction, among others.
Mia is a Progressive, a little bit too obsessed by politics, and cheers for each and every victory in the name of human rights. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.


Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card.

Links