Publisher: Interlude Press
Amazon: Black Dust
Blurb: Fifteen years after a tragic car crash claimed a friend’s life and permanently injures his then-boyfriend, Broadway musician Tobias Spence reconnects with his former love. As Emmett and Tobias explore their renewed relationship, the two men face old hurts and the new challenges of a long-distance romance. Will Tobias lose his second chance at love to the ghosts he can’t seem to put to rest?
"I can't, Emmett. I—can't go back."
"Then we are clearly not ready for any sort of commitment."
"Wait. You won't agree to—to us—unless I come to Indiana?"
"I won't," Emmett said. "It's all feeling a little one-sided to me, and I'm not okay with that."
"You don't understand."
"I do understand, Toby. I was there for everything that makes you afraid of that place."
"Yes. You were," Toby said, taking Emmett's hand in his. "But my concerns about going back have nothing to do with you."
"Maybe they should have something to do with me."
"That's—" Toby pulled his hand away. "That's not fair."
"It really is," Emmett said. He reached across the table for Toby's hand again. "Please?" Toby took his hand and Emmett squeezed, holding on as if he might never let go. "We experienced a great tragedy together. And while Scotty's parents lost their son, no one felt the things we felt. No one else woke up screaming and sweating when we heard the sounds of the crash in our sleep."
"No one else knew the fear of maybe never walking again. No one else lost weight and a semester of school because he might get thrown in jail. No one else felt the things we felt together. That's all ours. As much as you want to, you cannot take me out of the equation."
"But, that's just it, Em. I don’t want to feel those things again. I cannot walk back into that—that darkness."
Emmett pulled their joined hands to his lips and kissed Toby’s knuckles. "You already have. You have been so enamored¬—you've practically spent this entire week making love to my scars. You're there. And it's not so dark anymore."
"No, because you're whole again. You're not broken anymore."
Emmett saw it, then. He saw in the way Toby had almost obsessed over the ridiculous tattoo and Emmett's scars, as if begging for them to also bring him the powers that Derek had wished upon Emmett's body those years ago. He saw it in Toby's insistence that they start all over as if the accident never happened, as if the years of silence weren't strung between them like a rope and plank bridge connecting two separate lands.
So he said it. To give it power. To make it a truth they shared—like their shared tragedy. "And you still are. Broken."
Toby nodded, grasping at Emmett's fingers like a lifeline. "I'm so—" He took a deep, shuddering breath. "I'm so exhausted making sure no one knows."
"Oh, Toby." All the more reason “trying again” was a bad idea. Unready to let go, Emmett kissed Toby's fingers again. "Then come to my home," Emmett offered, trite as it sounded in his own ears. "I've remodeled the master and made a party room in my basement for the kids."
"You've never told me—"
"It's beautiful, really. It's on a couple of acres, and the back of the property is lined with a stream you can hear from the kitchen when the windows are open. It's very peaceful. It sounds like you need some peace."
"You deserve a beautiful life."
"So let me share it with you. At least think about it?"
Toby nodded and began to clean up. "Will you still come see me in San Francisco after school's out?"
"I don't know. I'd really like an answer before I agree to see you again."
"Okay. I'm sorry it's not as easy as it should be."
"I am too, Toby. Being with you was always so easy."
Meet the author: Lynn Charles earned her degree in music education and for many years performed and directed choral music. When she’s not writing, she can be found strolling through local farmers markets near her home in Central Ohio in search of ingredients for new recipes. Her novel Chef’s Table was published in 2014 by Interlude Press.
"I'm happy to be here! I’m an author, wife and mother living in Central Ohio. I’ve been writing—from lavish journal entries to fictional stories—most of my life. My first novel, Chef's Table, was published in December 2014 with Interlude Press. Black Dust is about a couple who, fifteen years after a tragic car accident tore them apart, are given a second chance to heal and to love."
1) Is there a character in your books that you can’t stand? (Antagonist for example) And what makes them someone you don’t like?
a. I can't say I can't stand Gino, because I created the little twit, but he is most definitely someone I wouldn't want to spend time with if her were real. As written, he's vapid, vain and unconcerned with much outside of his libido and the nightlife at the local club. Something tells me if I were to poke at him a bit harder, I'd find something broken in him, but honestly, he was fun to write as a general jerk. Emmett's mother Miriam is another unlikable character. You'll have to read the book to see if she's redeemable however.
2) Are there misconceptions people have about your genre?
a. Sure. Some are there because it's how things have always been, the biggest of which is that LGBT stories never get the HEA. The tides are changing and that is beginning to happen more and more, and I'm thrilled to be a part of that. Everyone deserves the happily ever after.
3) Is there message in your novel that you hope readers grasp?
a. There are a few: Second chances are possible, even after many many years; not achieving the dreams of your youth does not mean you have failed—resiliency can make for new dreams and new happiness; sometimes to move forward you must look back and deal with the flotsam of your past.
4) How has your writing evolved since your first book? (If this is your first book, how do you hope it evolves?)
a. I feel like I have a better concept of general storytelling, rather than just throwing scenes out and hoping they'll land. I wasn't quite that haphazard with my first, but I was definitely more intentional this time around. I think it paid off in a smoother arc and a more meaningful story. I'm also less afraid to let my protagonists hurt. They'll get fixed, I'm in charge of that, but they won't break if I give them new challenges.
5) One food you don’t care if you never eat it again.
a. Kale. All you lovelies who insist that mess is tasty are crazy. ;) I've tried it as a chip, sautéed, fresh, candied and air puffed—okay, not those last two—but it is vile and should be banished from restaurant menus post haste. I see this great looking dish and right there, taunting me and sticking its tongue out is kale. Ruins everything.
Where to find the author:
Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27830185-black-dust
Tour Dates & Stops:
7-Apr: Love Bytes, 3 Chicks After Dark, Elisa - My Reviews and Ramblings, Hearts on Fire, Jessie G. Books
8-Apr: Happily Ever Chapter, Bonkers About Books, My Fiction Nook
11-Apr: BFD Book Blog, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Oh My Shelves
12-Apr: Wicked Faerie's Tales and Reviews, Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance, Divine Magazine
13-Apr: Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Velvet Panic, Book Lovers 4Ever
14-Apr: Louise Lyons, Unquietly Me, Havan Fellows
15-Apr: MM Good Book Reviews, A.M. Leibowitz
18-Apr: Alpha Book Club, V's Reads
19-Apr: Butterfly-O-Meter, Three Books Over The Rainbow, Bayou Book Junkie
20-Apr: Up All Night, Read All Day, Outrageous Heroes, Molly Lolly, Mikky's World of Books, Inked Rainbow Reads
Rafflecopter Prize: $25 IP Gift Card Grand Prize + 5 eBooks editions of Black Dust
a Rafflecopter giveaway
This journal is friends only. This entry was originally posted at http://reviews-and-ramblings.dreamwidth.org/4813768.html. If you are not friends on this journal, Please comment there using OpenID.