I'm delighted today to have JL Merrow on my blog again. Today she's here to promote her new book Hard Tail which is available now from Samhain Publishing. Over to you, Jamie!
Hard Tail is set in and around Totton, a small town near Southampton in the South of England. Totton is just outside the New Forest, a National Park covering over 200 square miles of Hampshire and Wiltshire. It’s a popular spot for mountain bikers—and ponies, as the photo suggests. I have fond memories of being taken for days out in the forest by my grandparents, and I swear I can still taste the pub sandwiches—proper, country ham, not pre-packaged rubbish, spread with my first-ever taste of mustard.
But just how new is the New Forest?
The answer is, not very. In fact, it’s actually a remnant of the forests that covered Britain after the end of the last Ice Age, around 12,000 years ago. It was given the name “New Forest” in around 1079, when William the Conqueror decided he needed a place to do a spot of hunting. It wasn’t a popular act at the time: he pulled down several dozen small villages and their parish churches, and the death of two of his sons and one of his grandsons in separate incidents in the forest was looked on by locals—with grim satisfaction—as divine retribution.
The New Forest today is largely unchanged from William’s time, and contains several kinds of important lowland habitat including valley bogs, wet heaths, dry heaths as well as deciduous woodland. It’s a great place to see wildlife—as Tim finds out in Hard Tail, when he goes for a bike ride with Matt’s mountain biking mates. Of course, he has to force his gaze away from Matt’s more obvious charms first!
What’s your favourite place to get back to nature? And what food do you associate with the countryside?
JL Merrow is that rare beast, an English person who refuses to drink tea. She read Natural Sciences at Cambridge, where she learned many things, chief amongst which was that she never wanted to see the inside of a lab ever again. Her one regret is that she never mastered the ability of punting one-handed whilst holding a glass of champagne.
She writes across genres, with a preference for contemporary gay romance and the paranormal, and is frequently accused of humour.
Find JL Merrow online at: www.jlmerrow.com
All commenters will be entered into a draw for winner’s choice of an e-book from my backlist, PLUS a gift certificate for $25 from Amazon (or the e-book retailer of your choice). The more blog tour posts you comment on, the more chances you get! See my website here for full itinerary.
Draw closes on Wed 23rd May. Good luck! :D
Blurb for Hard Tail
His job: downsized out of existence. His marriage: dead in the water. It doesn’t take a lot of arm twisting for Tim Knight to agree to get out of London and take over his injured brother’s mountain bike shop for a while. A few weeks in Southampton is a welcome break from the wreck his life has become, even though he feels like a fish out of water in this brave new world of outdoor sports and unfamiliar technical jargon.
The young man who falls—literally—through the door of the shop brings everything into sharp, unexpected focus. Tim barely accepts he’s even in the closet until his attraction to Matt Berridge pulls him close enough to touch the doorknob.
There’s only one problem with the loveable klutz: his bullying boyfriend. Tim is convinced Steve is the cause of the bruises that Matt blows off as part of his risky sport. But rising to the defense of the man he’s beginning to love means coming to terms with who he is—in public—in a battle not even his black belt prepared him to fight. Until now.
Product Warnings: Contains an out-and-proud klutz, a closeted, karate-loving accountant—and a cat who thinks it’s all about him. Watch for a cameo appearance from the Pricks and Pragmatism lovers. May inspire yearnings for fresh air, exercise, and a fit, tanned bike mechanic of your very own.
Hard Tail is available from Samhain Publishing here.
My website: http://www.jlmerrow.com/
Blog tour itinerary: http://www.jlmerrow.com/index.html
Hard Tail: http://store.samhainpublishing.com/hard-tail-p-6805.html