Today is the final day of the Keeping Faith blog tour.
Being the last stop on the tour does have some perks. One of them being waiting until the last minute to write this post! ^_^
First off, I need to thank Freddy MacKay for sending me a list of questions to help me today's topic. What makes the perfect hero in your book?
Answer: The character you don't expect to be the hero.
In real life, heroes come in all shapes and sizes, from all walks of life. Sometimes they are the people you don't see until they step up in the middle of a crisis. They are people who act with heart and compassion. They don't have to be strong or athletic or have a background in civil service. Being a hero doesn't mean you have to save people from a burning building. Sometimes all it take is stepping forward or speaking up. Just Joe Schmo doing the right thing without regard to his or her own welfare. A hero.
Keeping Faith is contemporary fiction, with fiction being the operative word in that phrase. Just like what goes on in sex scenes in a romance novel (defiantly planning a post on that subject), the experience is fluffed up a bit because we want to root for the characters, feel good, and have a happy ending. Sometimes we want angst and heartbreak but we always, always want that HEA.
I'll be the first to admit that the situation Trent, Brock, and AJ find themselves in--well, in real life that happy ending would be a 1-2% probability. So you have to suspend disbelief in a couple of chapters but I did try to make the experience as real as possible.
I have to say the happy-ever-after wouldn't have been achieved without the part our antihero played. I happened to fall in love with Aldrich as he came alive on the page. Some of you may like him, some of you won't. Is he a hero? Yes or no, I'll let you decide.
Today's exclusive excerpt I have to handle carefully because I didn't want to give out spoilers. Where I skipped a spoiler paragraph there is an ellipse. The two sections flowed together quite well despite the missing piece. If you read the exclusive excerpt over at Toni Grffin's on Monday, you would've briefly met Aldrich. Today's look at him is a little deeper. If you didn't get a chance to read it then you can find the link on the list below for the tour schedule.
Thank you for stopping by and reading! I hope you enjoy the exclusive excerpt. Happy Holidays!!
Something to note about the giveaway: the more comments the more winners. Also, go back to the other blog stops and leave a comment there as well. On December 9th all the blog stops will draw a random winners and I'll send out an e-book copy of Keeping Faith to the winners.
Side Note: If you haven't read Playing For Keeps, it is a free read that you can find on Fireborn's website or over at All Romance (ARe). I would suggest reading it first before jumping into Keeping Faith.
Publisher: Firborn Publishing, LLC
Tentative Release Date: November 28th, 2014
Genre: Action/Adventure, ADVISORY- Contains moderate violence, Category Length Novel, Comedy/Humor, Contemporary, Family Drama, Happy Ending, Holiday-Winter, Male/Male, Ménage, Mystery/Suspense, Part of Series, Romance
Heat Level: 3 Flames
Trent, Brock, and AJ are excited to spend Christmas together in their new home but secrets and dark dealings by Trent's estranged father interrupt their plans. Brock is kidnapped and Trent and AJ scramble to find a way to get Brock back before it is too late.
Several months after Trent Harte was drafted into the NFL, he, AJ Barnes, and Brock Everette are settling into their new home in Miami. Christmas is approaching and they are excited to share another holiday season with each other. Unbeknownst to them, William Harte, Trent's estranged father double-crossed a deadly adversary and then disappeared. To draw William out of hiding, Trent becomes a target. In a horrible twist of fate, the kidnappers grab Brock instead leaving AJ and Trent scrambling to find a way get Brock back. Detectives believe Trent is responsible, and with each passing hour the likelihood of Brock returning home alive dwindles.
Brock traded his safety to ensure his lovers were out of harm's way. He would do it again even knowing he'd end up captured and restrained in a part of town that no one in their right mind would willingly go. The kidnappers are terrifying, but Brock is a fighter, holding onto hope with both hands. He must decide to either wait to be rescued or find a way to escape. Stuck between the wills of a ruthless assassin and an insane mob thug, something needs to happen soon or he'll never see Trent and AJ again.
He didn't lock the car when he climbed out of the sedan. No one would dare steal it, especially with the lookout not far away. Grabbing the drink carrier and the bag of breakfast sandwiches, Aldrich crossed the street with his bounty and approached the house with the teenager sitting on the porch steps.
The kid stared at him warily, but didn't say anything when Aldrich sat next to him, placing the bag between his feet so he could withdraw a cup of orange juice from the drink carrier before handing the other to the teenager. The boy hesitated before accepting the cup, lifting the lid to smell the juice as if he didn't trust Aldrich not to slip him something.
Aldrich didn't comment on the lack of trust. He didn't eat or drink what others provided to him, it would be stupid of him if he did. Instead, he dug into the bag for a couple of breakfast sandwiches, placing the bag at the boy's feet. Chewing slowly, he watched the house across the street. There was no external indication the building was occupied. A police car driving by would never suspect Bishop's men currently hid inside the dilapidated structure.
"You dress like a pansy," the boy said around a mouthful of sandwich. "If anyone in the neighborhood wore clothes like that they would have their asses beat on a regular basis."
"In the world I move in, my appearance is misdirection," Aldrich replied before popping the last piece of egg and cheese biscuit into his mouth.
The teenager chewed, his expression thoughtful. "So you're saying you dress like a douchebag because it causes people to underestimate you."
Aldrich took a sip of the orange juice. "People who dress in all black, wear leathers, and ride a motorcycle, they're advertising they believe themselves to be an exemplary badass. Some people may steer clear of them but some would take it as an invitation to challenge them, to test them and see if they were better. But moving around like this"—Aldrich indicated his light colored boat pants, cream jacket, and three button plaid vest—"most people will look at me and see what?"
"A pansy assed weak man who would be easy to take down and rob."
"Exactly. The majority of people will walk by and sneer at me disdainfully. That's okay because I couldn't care less what others think. My enemy will look at me and underestimate me."
"What makes you think I'm not your enemy?"
"Because I'm paying Caesar to be my ally right now. When I leave, I'll go back home and never will our paths cross again. And if they do, you won't recognize me."
The kid chewed the last of the breakfast sandwich, seeming to think about what Aldrich said.
Aldrich mentally reviewed the information he wanted to impart to the Cubans. He wasn't by any means new to this game. His uncle had pulled him out of boarding school when he was young and sent him to Europe where he tutored with the best private assassin in the business. Now at the age of twenty-nine he'd been doing Bishop's bidding for a long time. This was all he knew how to do and even though he carefully guarded his identity, he could only be lucky for so long. One day he'd make a mistake and he would be caught or killed.
The creak of the porch's floorboards brought Aldrich out of his musing. The man he'd been waiting for had arrived. Aldrich turned and looked up at Alejandro where he leaned against a post. He'd been waiting for the Cubans to approach him knowing he wouldn't meet with Caesar personally but was a little surprised Caesar sent his second in command.
Alejandro looked at the boy sitting next to Aldrich. "Raymon, go see your madre. She needs you to take her to the store. Come back afterwards."
After thanking Aldrich for breakfast, Raymon left. Slowly, Aldrich rose to his feet. "Nice to see you, Alejandro."
Alejandro stared at Aldrich, his dark, dead eyes giving nothing away. He thought at one time Alejandro might have been a good-looking man but a hard life had scarred his features to the point that only the most careless individuals weren't automatically wary of him when he entered a room.
"There is a rumor, amigo, that Paul Bishop is looking to bring his cartel to Miami."
Aldrich frowned even as he grinned on the inside. "I've heard the rumors as well, but his future plans aren't the reason why I'm here. Mr. Bishop is angry with the father of Trent Harte and I’m here to convey his displeasure. I've heard Mr. Bishop is having trouble with his supplier but discussions of moving wouldn't be shared with someone like me. I'm not in his inner circle. I guess we'll know if he starts sending more men to Miami."
Alejandro's prolonged stare made Aldrich itch to move. Despite what he’d told the boy, he was under no illusion the Cubans were his friends, regardless of how much money he'd given them. Every time he drove into their territory, Aldrich stayed hyperaware, waiting for the moment when the Cubans decided he overstayed his paid-for welcome. He played a dangerous game with them now. If he wasn't careful, if any of his meticulous research was faulty, if he hadn't read the personalities correctly to set off their triggers, then they would kill him.
The (very short) Tour Schedule. Just click on the blog titles to follow the link:
12/1 – Toni Griffin's blog
12/2 – Hearts On Fire Reviews
12/3 – Angel Martinez's blog
12/4 – World of Diversity Fiction
12/5 – Lexi Ander's blog (I know, this is like cheating!) Wait! You're already here!
Playing For Keeps Blurb:
College running back, Trent Harte, has been living with his lovers, AJ Barnes and Brock Everett, for two years. Caught in a compromising position, rumors abound. It's hard enough to be an openly gay football player, but gossip and snide comments only add to his stress. Threats against his partners causes Trent to wonder if he should step back from the relationship.
AJ and Brock know there is something wrong when Trent begins to pull away. A call from Trent's father only adds to his distress. AJ and Brock refuse to let him shoulder the responsibility alone and they call for help. Will Trent find the strength to withstand the pressure and hold on to those he loves? Or will AJ and Brock be too late to convince Trent that they are playing for keeps?
You can download Playing For Keeps at: Fireborn Publishing | All Romance
You can download Playing For Keeps at: Fireborn Publishing | All Romance
Lexi has always been an avid reader, and at a young age started reading (secretly) her mother’s romances (the ones she was told not to touch). She was the only teenager she knew of who would be grounded from reading. Later, with a pencil and a note book, she wrote her own stories and shared them with friends because she loved to see their reactions. A Texas transplant, Lexi now kicks her boots up in the Midwest with her Yankee husband and her eighty-pound puppies named after vacuum cleaners.
Web site: http://www.lexiander.com