Posts Tagged With: The Last Guy Breathing

Honorary Blogger Skylar M. Cates: Caught in Fake Romance + Giveaway!

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Caught in Fake Romance

by Skylar M. Cates

For Lady Gaga it might be all about the bad romance, but I’m obsessed lately with the fake ones. I must be. Without even realizing it, I wrote two books with pretend relationships in them.

In The Last Guy Breathing, Henry and Locke must pretend to be a couple to solve a crime. In The Holiday Hoax, Evan and JD fake a relationship to fool Evan’s parents and save face. The two books are hugely different in tone and plot, so I was actually surprised they shared this feature. I had to ask myself: what is it about the fake romance trope that it continues to thrive?

In the fake relationship,  the idea is that two people are tossed together due to circumstances outside of their control and must pretend to be a couple. They might be hostile to each other at the beginning. This is true for Henry and Locke in The Last Guy Breathing.  Forcing them to spend time together, though, gives them an opportunity to see beyond the angst to the real person underneath.

The Holiday Hoax is a sweeter one.  They start out as potential friends with no intentions of becoming lovers.  As their friendship deepens, so does their possibility for romance.

In both The Last Guy Breathing and The Holiday Hoax, the couples risk exposure. Will somebody find out their secret? What will happen if the truth comes out?  Most importantly, the MCs must work for their happily ever after. The fun, of course, is watching them go from pretense to true love.  I had a good time writing these two novels, and I hope you enjoy them.

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About The Last Guy Breathing

2Henry Clueley doesn’t want to be in Glamour, not after moving far away to overcome a difficult, if privileged, childhood. He’s no longer that pudgy kid desperate to escape his hometown, but it still holds painful memories. When his recently widowed mother needs him, however, “dependable Henry” does the right thing—even if it means leaving the IRS to take a boring corporate position. Things don’t stay boring for long. Soon Henry helps the local sheriff’s department unravel a crime. Posing as half of a fake couple seems like a fun idea… until Henry learns he already knows the deputy playing his other half.

Deputy Locke may be new to the Glamour Sheriff’s Department, but he’s fought his way up in the world and is determined to make a good impression. He keeps his private life quiet, even from his beloved younger brother. Locke knows better than most the need to protect what’s his.

Henry resents the arrogant, gorgeous cop, and Locke thinks Henry is sheltered and spoiled. Their secret and steamy encounter only adds to the animosity. As they join forces, Henry thinks a relationship with Locke would be catastrophic, but the white-hot passion between them makes it hard to resist.

Available at: Dreamspinner Press & Amazon

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About The Holiday Hoax

1I’m Evan Goodman, budding actor, future star, college freshman. Oh, and let’s not forget—recently dumped. If only my family wasn’t expecting to meet my new boyfriend over the holiday break. Enter JD Laurens—a sweet and quiet science major who mostly keeps to himself. When he gathers the courage to come out, poor JD gets abandoned by his only family right in front of me, and now he has nowhere to go for Christmas. But I have a proposition for him: pretend to be my boyfriend for the holidays so I can take him home. It’s a win-win. What could go wrong?

Available at: Dreamspinner Press and Amazon

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About Skylar M. Cates

Skylar M. Cates loves a good romance. She is quite happy to drink some coffee, curl up with a good book, and not move all day. Most days, however, Skylar is chasing after her husband, her kids, and her giant dog, Wasabi. Skylar dreams about spending her days writing her novels, walking along the beach, and making more time for her good friends. On a shoestring budget, Skylar has traveled all over in her early years. Although, lately, the laundry room is the farthest place she has visited, Skylar still loves to chat with people from all around the globe.

Find out more about Skylar on her Website, Facebook or Twitter.

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Skylar has graciously offered up an eBook copy of winner’s choice from Skylar’s backlist!! The giveaway starts now and ends December 18, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. To enter, just click the link below!

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Please be aware that the only way to enter the giveaway is to click the Rafflecopter link above. Any comments on this post will not count towards entering the giveaway, except to verify your Rafflecopter entry.

Don’t forget to check out JustJen’s review of The Last Guy Breathing and Nikyta’s review of The Holiday Hoax to see what they thought of them!

Good luck!

Categories: Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, Honorary Blogger Post | Tags: , , , , | 12 Comments

Book Review: The Last Guy Breathing by Skylar Cates

Reviewed by JustJen

2Title: The Last Guy Breathing
Author: Skylar Cates
Series: The Guy #3
Heroes: Henry/Locke
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 154 Pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: December 8, 2014
Available at: Dreamspinner Press, Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb:  Henry Clueley doesn’t want to be in Glamour, not after moving far away to overcome a difficult, if privileged, childhood. He’s no longer that pudgy kid desperate to escape his hometown, but it still holds painful memories. When his recently widowed mother needs him, however, “dependable Henry” does the right thing—even if it means leaving the IRS to take a boring corporate position. Things don’t stay boring for long. Soon Henry helps the local sheriff’s department unravel a crime. Posing as half of a fake couple seems like a fun idea… until Henry learns he already knows the deputy playing his other half.

Deputy Locke may be new to the Glamour Sheriff’s Department, but he’s fought his way up in the world and is determined to make a good impression. He keeps his private life quiet, even from his beloved younger brother. Locke knows better than most the need to protect what’s his.

Henry resents the arrogant, gorgeous cop, and Locke thinks Henry is sheltered and spoiled. Their secret and steamy encounter only adds to the animosity. As they join forces, Henry thinks a relationship with Locke would be catastrophic, but the white-hot passion between them makes it hard to resist.
Continue reading

Categories: 4 Star Ratings, Book Review, JustJen's Reviews, LGBT, Published in 2014 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Honorary Blogger Skylar M. Cates: Lessons on Writing a Series + Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Lessons on Writing a Series

by Skylar M. Cates

About a year ago, I set a goal for myself. Well, I set a few goals: clean my house more, lose some weight, save more money, write a series. I’m proud to say that while my house remains a mess and the scale has not budged, my series is one goal that I have actually achieved.

The Guy from Glamour, book one, began to take shape in my mind when I pictured a very loving, if slightly meddling family. I wanted a main character that was all about his family. From that point, I knew that the other MC must be his opposite. He must be somebody who has no family and does not think he will ever have love—-Anthony and Dean were created.

It was at the halfway point in this novel when I began to wonder if it should become a series. Readers often write to me and ask about a sequel to my other novel Exposed, and while that might happen someday, part of the reason it has not happened is that I did not plan it. Honestly, I was so excited and nervous to publish the book that the idea of doing more never occurred to me.

Lesson One: Plan Ahead

As I wrote Anthony and Dean’s love affair, I realized I could do it.  I loved these two guys and their world, and I could write a series around them. I was so excited! I wrote about a dozen pages of notes.  But I needed to figure out if their story should continue into multiple books or if their friends would each get books of their own. I’m a fan of both types of series. For The Guy Series, however, I decided to have the secondary characters find love too. Anthony and Dean, and their clan, would and do continue into the other books—that way their story also continues—but the focus would be on Aaron Weiss and Henry Clueley.  Possibly, if readers want it, I might give Mac (from The Only Guy) his story too.

One day, I might attempt the other type of series. For some reason, I feel as if the two MC’s need to be cops solving crimes, or supernatural beings, in order for an ongoing series about the two of them to continue.  For now, I was happy to write the spinoffs.

As I worked on The Only Guy, it was helpful to keep The Guy from Glamour nearby. I had to be careful with every detail, such as the spelling of minor characters names, to major details involving Aaron’s back story as a Night Stalker.

Lesson Two: Check the facts

*Important note—whatever happens in book one, must be reflected in book two

As book two nears its release, I realize the pressure on a series is far greater than on a single book. The fact that many readers liked The Guy From Glamour was awesome and I am so grateful to them for letting me know, but it would be a lie to say it didn’t make finishing The Only Guy a little worrisome. I love Aaron and Jesse’s story so much, and I’m eager to see how readers like them, but it’s kind of like comparing my children. But they are bound together, for better or worse.

Lesson Three: A Promise is a Promise

My final lesson involves Henry’s story. As I submitted The Only Guy for consideration, I began the last story, The Last Guy Breathing. The characters came to me quickly, and their enemies to lovers trope was fun to write. However, I challenged myself with this one to add a few twists. It has a mystery element to it that was new for me. But that’s what keeps life interesting, isn’t it? Continued challenges. I wrote over 74,000 words and realized that the mystery part wasn’t as strong as I wanted. But what to do? Scrap 74k? Forget Henry’s story? I had set it up in The Only Guy, and I had promised a trilogy to DSP and my readers… So no—–that was not an option.

I rolled up my sleeves, called in my beta readers, and I revised the novel. It took me twice as long to finish as The Guy from Glamour or The Only Guy, but I have to say that I’m thrilled with results! (At the time of this post, Henry’s story was accepted by Dreamspinner and will be out in December 2014/January 2015 = Hooray!)

Will I ever do another series? I hope so! For now, I’m happy to see Anthony and Dean, Aaron and Jesse, and Henry and Locke go on their way.

Thanks for hosting me!

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About The Only Guy

The Only Guy by Skylar M. Cates eBookAaron Weiss knows how to escape. Years ago, he ran from a romantic disappointment and impulsively joined the Army. Now, he’s forced to take a medical discharge and readjusting to life at home proves a challenge.

Jesse Ross knows how to hide. He realizes he’s an oddball, and that he’s an outsider within his own family. He also knows his secret love since childhood, Aaron, only wants his good-looking, favored older brother. Yet Jesse could never completely abandon his intense feelings for Aaron. Over the years, Jesse was a faithful pen pal to him. Still, he’s shocked to his core to find Aaron on his doorstep.

As long-buried secrets and past hurts take center stage, the two are overwhelmingly drawn to each other. But it’s their future that may force them to risk everything.

Available at: Dreamspinner PressAmazonBarnes and Noble

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Excerpt from The Only Guy

One of my favorite things about The Only Guy was doing the childhood scenes. Here is an excerpt from that time. At this point in the story, Aaron has a crush on Gregory, Jesse’s older brother:

Aaron glanced at Gregory’s body one more time as he walked off in the direction of the cabin, noticing how Gregory’s tight shorts clung to his ass. If only Gregory would loosen up a little, forget all the rules for his future plans and just, well, see him. Aaron would be his for life.

“Come on,” Jesse said, pulling at Aaron’s arm. “Forget him.”

They walked down a path, crunching over the dirt and twigs, following the animal’s throaty cries of pain.

“I hope it’s all right.”

“Me too.”

The sky was thick with clouds, but the heat permeated the air. His shirt stuck to his skin, his stomach rumbled, and Aaron half regretted coming along. He swiped his hand over his forehead as Jesse hurried to keep up with him. Although tall for his age, Jesse was all bony angles, and his stride was awkward. Aaron slowed his pace a little, allowing Jesse to match him.

“When we’re all grown up, do you think we’ll still be coming here?” Jesse stole a glance at him. “’Cause I think we will. We’ll spend every summer right here. We could come other times too. I bet it’s pretty in the winter with all the snow. But definitely in the summer, we’ll be here.”

Aaron’s mouth curved into a smile. “Maybe.”

Jesse nodded back seriously as if the matter had been settled.

The path narrowed, and they fell quiet as they maneuvered the trial. Soon they saw drops of fresh blood. Finally, near a patch of browned grass, Jesse halted and moved to point at something that lay eerily still. Aaron edged closer. The animal was all curled up into a ball, making it impossible to see it, but Aaron thought it might be an injured raccoon. There was a puddle of blood by its left hind leg.

“You could tie your bandana onto its leg?” Jesse suggested. “It isn’t moaning now. Maybe it’s passed out and would let you?”

“I don’t know….”

Jesse gave him a resolute stare. “You could try.”

Sometimes Jesse sounded just like an adult but with a kid’s scrawny body. It was unnerving.

After approaching it slowly, Aaron nudged it with his sneaker and it didn’t move. Now that he could see it up close—

“Holy crap! That’s a skunk! Let’s get the hell out of here. Now!”

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About Skylar M. Cates

Skylar M. Cates loves a good romance. She is quite happy to drink some coffee, curl up with a good book, and not move all day. Most days, however, Skylar is chasing after her husband, her kids, and her giant dog, Wasabi. Skylar dreams about spending her days writing her novels, walking along the beach, and making more time for her good friends. On a shoestring budget, Skylar has traveled all over in her early years. Although, lately, the laundry room is the farthest place she has visited, Skylar still loves to chat with people from all around the globe.

You can reach Skylar by Email, Website, Facebook or Twitter

Blogger_Giveaway

The Blogger Girls are trying something a little different this time. Instead of strictly commenting, we’re going to try using Rafflecopter as our giveaway source. This means, you can get more entries if you do all the options!

Anyway, the prize in this giveaway is reader’s choice on either The Guy from Glamour or The Only Guy in ebook! To enter, just click the link below!

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Please be aware that the only way to enter the giveaway is to click the Rafflecopter link above. Any comments on this post will not count towards entering the giveaway, except to verify your Rafflecopter entry.

Don’t forget to check out JustJen’s reviews of The Only GuyThe Guy from Glamour to see what she thought of them!

Good luck!

Categories: Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, Honorary Blogger Post, LGBT | Tags: , , , , , , | 12 Comments