We’re so pleased to have author Amy Jo Cousins joining us today on the tour for her new Holiday Romance, Glass Tidings. Enjoy Amy’s guest post and then be sure to check out her giveaway details below.
Welcome, Amy Jo!
Beam Me Up, Scotty
One of my favorite things to do as a writer is to sneak my own hobbies and interests into my books by giving them to different characters. I love geeking out over things like cooking Indian food, shooting pool, animated web series, or the world’s best rigatoni recipe, all of which have ended up in stories I’ve published.
In Glass Tidings, I wrote about Eddie, a drifter and Renaissance faire glass artist, and Gray, a hermit and small town Christmas shop owner, who live and work together for a holiday season. They are both deeply lonely men, neither of whom would ever admit that. Gray, however, has a pretty extensive library of books in his home, and one of the things the two of them quickly adopt is reading together after dinner every night.
Eddie is excited to discover Gray has an extensive collection of old school science fiction. This shared interest comes straight from my own reading habits, developed over forty years of reading books in that genre, some of which I’ve revisited in the past couple of years for the first time since reading them originally.
I grew up reading the classics of 1970s sci-fi: Heinlein, Hubbard, Asimov, Bradbury, Clarke, Christopher, Pournelle and Niven. (Whole lotta white guys. Sigh. SFF got way better when I discovered women and POC authors too.) I gave both heroes of Glass Tidings a fondness for these old books, mixed with an awareness of their problematic aspects and sheer love for some of the ridiculousness of those older stories.
(I was on Twitter a year or two ago, reminiscing about how much I’d loved Lucifer’s Hammer by Jerry Pournelle and Larry Niven, a book about what happens after an asteroid crashes into Earth. Chatting with a friend, I mentioned that I’d heard the science of the book holds up well even after thirty years. My friend agreed, and then proceeded to remind me of some seriously racist bits from the book I’d completely forgotten about. And so I was reminded to keep a critical eye on my old favorites, as many of them are racist/sexist/homophobic/etc.)
In addition to Lucifer’s Hammer, Eddie and Gray read a variety of SFF, including Samuel Delany’s Stars in My Pocket Like Grains of Sand, Dickens’ A Christmas Carol (early time travel science fiction, I decided), Battlefield Earth by L.R. Hubbard (glorious in its space opera over-the-topness), the magnificent classic by Walter Miller, A Canticle for Leibowitz, and the newly released Arabella of Mars, a Napoleonic space adventure of sailships, pirates, and Martians.
If we revisited these two down the line, I think we’d find them expanding their original taste for old school science fiction to include later classics I’ve loved, including more books by women, queer, and POC authors. I think they’d find Ammonite by Nicola Griffith, Sheri Tepper’s Grass, Ann Leckie’s Ancillary Justice, and Nnedi Okorafor’s Binti particularly fascinating. These books all focus on issues of gender and/or otherness, and I think they’d open up a whole new world to Eddie and Gray.
But even more exciting for Eddie in particular, who bemoaned the lack of dirty bits between hot guys in his sci-fi, I think they’d discover LGBTQ science fiction romance novels. From the pirates in space adventures of Marie Sexton’s Blind Space to the bounty hunting bisexual couple in love with one of their targets of Michelle Moore and Reesa Herberth’s The Slipstream Con, Eddie would love this subgenre of queer romance.
Eddie would glom the glorious worldbuilding and interspecies relationship of Lyn Gala’s Rownt series (starting with Claimings, Tails, and Alien Artifacts) and the epic space adventure of Kelly Jensen and Jenn Burke’s Chaos Station series. He’d dive into corporate espionage in space, with lesbians!, in Cathy Pegau’s Deep Deception and guard/inmate interspecies romance on a prison planet in Jamie Craig’s Outcast Mine.
Then he’d share it all with Gray.
What else should these two read? Got some terrific LGBTQ SFR recommendations for me? Please comment with them!
About the Book
Eddie Rodrigues doesn’t stay in one place long enough to get attached. The only time he broke that rule, things went south fast. Now he’s on the road again, with barely enough cash in his pocket to hop a bus to Texas after his (sort-of-stolen) car breaks down in the middle of nowhere, Midwest, USA.
He’s fine. He’ll manage. Until he watches that girl get hit by a car and left to die.
Local shop owner Grayson Croft isn’t in the habit of doing people any favors. But even a recluse can’t avoid everyone in a town as small as Clear Lake. And when the cop who played Juliet to your Romeo in the high school play asks you to put up her key witness for the night, you say yes.
Now Gray’s got a grouchy glass artist stomping around his big, empty house, and it turns out that he . . . maybe . . . kind of . . . likes the company.
But Eddie Rodrigues never sticks around.
Unless a Christmas shop owner who hates the season can show an orphan what it means to have family for the holidays.
About the Author
Amy Jo Cousins writes contemporary romance and erotica about smart people finding their own best kind of smexy. She lives in Chicago with her son, where she tweets too much, sometimes runs really far, and waits for the Cubs to win the World Series.
To celebrate the release of Glass Tidings, one lucky winner will receive $20 in Riptide credit! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on December 10, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!