Please welcome my special guest, Michael Rupured! Michael has published with Dreamspinner Press and his new release, After Christmas Eve, has just been released today by MLR Press! Congrats, Michael!
Michael is running a blog tour giveaway, so be sure to comment on this post and any of the other blog tour posts to be entered! -Shira
Thanks, Shira, for having me back to talk about After Christmas Eve, my new mystery/thriller from MLR Press. To celebrate the 10/11 release, I’m giving away 10 copies (ebooks) through an 11-stop blog hop. To enter, comment before midnight, October 25, 2013 on this or any of my posts on the eleven participating blogs. Be sure to include an email address.
After Christmas Eve is the second book in my holiday series. The story takes place thirty years earlier than Until Thanksgiving. A few characters appear in both, but the stories can be read in any order.
My inspiration came from a moment in the first book—set in 1996—when Philip Potter tells his nephew, Thad Parker, about a lover who’d killed himself thirty years earlier. I’d already fallen in love with Philip, and like many readers, wanted to know more about him.
Setting the story in 1966 pushed me way outside of my comfort zone. Could I write a story set when I was eight years old in a town I only visited a few times many years later? Turns out, thanks to Google and the voice of Philip Potter, I could.
Publishing my first novel was a HUGE learning experience. Applying the lessons I’d learned was another challenge, and of course, I wanted to push myself as a writer. Thanks to the Robot Unicorns and the folks at MLR Press, I did. The result is a mystery/thriller with a dash of romance, a generous dollop of humor, and for good measure, a spoonful of gay history.
Here’s the blurb: As Philip Potter wraps up his last minute shopping on Christmas Eve, 1966, James Walker, his lover of six years, takes his life. Unaware of what waits for him at home, Philip drops off gifts to the homeless shelter, an act of generosity that later makes him a suspect in the murder of a male prostitute.
Two men drive yellow Continentals. One is a killer, with the blood of at least six hustlers on his hands. Both men have secrets. And as Philip is about to discover, James had kept secrets, too. But James wasn’t trying to frame him for murder…
*This is the first of eleven stops on the After Christmas Eve Blog Hop. Excerpts appear in serial form along the hop.
Philip Potter trudged through falling snow with the last minute shoppers on Connecticut Avenue. A few more stops and he’d be done. He nodded, tipping his hat and smiling at the people he passed, now and then adding “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays.”
Not since childhood had he been so excited about the season’s festivities. The snow helped. Without at least a dusting, it hardly seemed like Christmas. But what made this year so special was the little boy his sister had delivered nearly four years earlier. Since January 13, 1963, Thaddeus Mathew Parker had become the reason for every season.
Philip had spent weeks every November since then researching toys before buying his nephew’s presents. Thad being too young his first Christmas to know what was going on had in no way detracted from the pleasure of buying for him. But Philip had been a little let down by his nephew’s cool response to the bathtub play set he’d bought, and last year, he’d been disappointed when Thad enjoyed playing with the ribbon and wrapping paper more than the LEGOs the experts had recommended.
This year would be different. His darling nephew had babbled about Santa for weeks, and upon request, reeled off an ever-changing list of toys he hoped to see under the tree. The one constant was a Ride ’em Fire Engine that Philip had bought for him and stashed in his sister’s garage. Thinking about how his nephew’s face would light up made Philip smile.
Blowing snow whirled around him. He pulled the black beret down onto his head and tightened the scarf around his neck, pulling it up over his goateed chin and freezing ears. The weatherman had predicted that the Christmas of 1966 would be the whitest since 1962. Maybe he and James could take Thad sledding on the hill by the Washington Monument.
Philip looked forward to spending Christmas in Maryland with his sister Mary and her husband Alex, Thad—who she still insisted on calling Mathew—and James Walker, his boyfriend. He pushed up the sleeve of his coat to check the time. James would soon be finishing up the meeting he’d arranged with his father. Philip doubted the conversation had gone well. He’d wanted to go along, but James wouldn’t let him—he’d said something about needing to fight his own battles and not rubbing the old man’s nose in anything. Philip snorted in disgust. James might have forgiven his father for kicking him out at sixteen, but Philip hadn’t.
He brushed the snow from his eyebrows with a gloved hand as he walked and tried imagining the conversation between James and Roland Walker. James’s part was easy. Having shared a bed with him for several years, Philip knew James better than anyone else did—especially his sorry excuse for a father.
Continued Monday, October 14 at: http://purpleroseteahouse.charliecochet.com
Buy link: MLR Press (http://www.mlrbooks.com/books.php)
Michael’s website: http://rupured.com