Every book release is special. I mean, you work and type and have nightmares (I do, anyway), and cackle maniacally when you think of something brilliant only to decide later that it’s the stupidest thing ever (and then later that it’s fucking brilliant again, depending upon your blood to caffein/alcohol ratio). I love what I do, and I’d do whether I made buckets of money or none at all (buckets of money are nice though, at least so I’m told). *ahem* Point is, I said my last release was special, and I’ll probably say it next time. 😉
ACTS OF CREATION is a book I cherish for a lot of reasons. The deeply emotional and personal nature of the Evergreen Grove series, for one thing, made this series a both a challenge and an amazing journey for me. I owe a huge thank-you to Lori Wilde for the brief time she spent mentoring me, and the advice she gave to try writing something more emotional. Well, I did. While neither At the Stars or Acts of Creation were at all about me, I drew on my experiences as a survivor of assault in writing about Cassie’s experiences in At the Stars–and to some extent, Michelle’s experience in Acts of Creation.
Most of all, it was the moment when Cassie met Dante in At the Stars that told me there was something even deeper for me to explore in Evergreen Grove: An estimated 1 in 6 men are survivors of sexual abuse, and yet I feel that I see them rarely as romance heroes. When I saw Cassie befriended Dante in At the Stars– this proud, strong, Puerto Rican boxer who had been abused by his former coach–I knew I needed to write his story. What came out as ACTS OF CREATION was kind of frightening, because for all of my research I’m not a guy and I could only try my best to tell his story well. But Also, I honestly fell in love with Dante, and the story of him and Michelle falling in love and shoring each other up was, for me, heartwarming, romantic, and sometimes even humorous.
I hope you’ll fall in love with Dante and Michelle just like I did:
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About Acts of Creation:
He’s living a lie.
Dante Ramos: Champion. Ladies’ man. Party animal. Women want him, and men either want to be him or put his lights out for sleeping with their girlfriends. It’s all an act. Inside, he’s so full of self-loathing he’s on a fast-track to self-destruction.
She’s living in the shadows.
Meeting Michelle at a support group for assault survivors shows Dante a new world of possibilities. Finally, someone in his life might understand him, and she creates in him a fierce need to protect. Trouble is, Dante lives his life in the spotlight, and the only thing Michelle wants is a place to hide.
Regular price – 3.99.
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Excerpt – Dante’s POV – All rights reserved:
I escape into the bright daylight, blinking and disoriented after the bleak, unnatural gym lighting. The warm afternoon should be breezy and refreshing, but instead I can’t breathe.
All of my lies are about to collapse on top of me.
I can think of one person I want to talk to about this. She was such a good listener, and how did I repay the favor? By sneaking away from her room at two in the morning.
I pull out my phone anyway. Perv that I am, I’m thinking about the way she felt when I slid out of bed last night. The way the moonlight from the window caressed her body. Asshole.
I’ve hit the “dial” button without thinking. I’m about ready to hang up and go deal with my shit like I’m used to doing, when she answers with the words, “I didn’t think I’d hear from you.”
Girl isn’t beating around the bush. Which is fair. I owe her an answer. One I’d be happy to give if I knew how to explain in a way that didn’t start out with, “The first thing I wanted when I woke up last night was to bury myself inside you and forget the rest of the world…”
“Dante? Hello? Am I talking to the inside of your pocket right now?”
Shit. I clear my throat. “I hear you. I mean…not my pocket. I’m here.”
“Is everything okay? Last night I thought maybe you were too overwhelmed or something. After what you told me. I didn’t mean to push you.”
Jesus. She’s apologizing to me. This girl’s got a better heart than anybody. If my mother were here, she’d probably tell me to marry her.
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EXTRAS: Want to share ACTS OF CREATION with the interwebs? Feel free to download one of these teaser graphics to post to your favorite social media locations:
Dante and Michelle’s Playlist:
- Human Touch – Bruce Springsteen
- Immortals – Fall Out Boy
- Ed Sheeran – Photograph
- Dave Matthews – Crush
- Tiesto – Red Lights
- OneRepublic – Feel Again
- Simple by Olive Carpet, at least I think that’s who it’s by. I heard this song performed by an a capella show choir when I was in college, and then later found it on Napster or wherever, because yes I was an asshole who downloaded illegal music in college and heeey, I had no idea one day I’d be a person whose livelihood also often got illegally downloaded by assholes so I guess that’s my karma. Anyway, I no longer have the mp3 of that song, and I don’t know where else to get it. I can’t seem to find it anywhere now, and there IS in fact a band called Olive Carpet, but Simple doesn’t seem to be one of their songs so perhaps I was drunker than I thought back at school. Nevertheless, I still love this song and it was in my head constantly while writing Acts of Creation – if you see me at a con or anything, I just might sing a little of it for you. 😉 OH – and if anyone can find me a recording of this, I’ll send them a signed book or a gift card or something.
Happy reading, everybody!! <3
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GIVEAWAY!! To celebrate the release, I’m giving away a $25 gift card from either Amazon or B&N – I apologize, but I’m making this a US only giveaway, because europe and even Canada has so many weird rules now–supposedly Canada requires a test of skill? I dunno. It’s all very confusing, and for now I’m trying to keep it simple until I can learn more. Thank you for understanding! I hope the fact that AOC is on sale for release week will assuage the irritation of my international readers at least a little. 😉