5 Stars, Dreamspinner Press, Holiday Romance, Joe Cosentino, Reviewed By JJ

Review: A Home for the Holidays by Joe Cosentino

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Title: A Home for the Holidays

Author: Joe Cosentino

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 60 Pages

At a Glance: I recommend A Home for the Holidays to anyone who loves travel adventures, Christmas themes, and m/m romance.

Reviewed By: JJ

Blurb: Bobby McGrath’s Christmas trip to the beautiful Italian island of Capri to meet his eccentric extended family offers stunning views—none more stunning than his third cousin, Paolo Mascobello, a real stocking stuffer. As the two young men embark on a relationship, Bobby, a driven law student, learns to relax and bask under the old Italian moon, and Paolo realizes there’s more to life than a frolic on the beach. For the two to find everlasting amore, Paulo must overcome his fear of commitment and learn to follow his dreams, and Bobby must get his wish for happily ever after.

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Review: This was such a sweet romance. The book begins when Bobby goes to visit his family in Italy for Christmas. He ends up spending a lot of time with his cousin, Paolo, who happens to be gay. While he picks his cousin’s mind about Italy, Bobby realizes that he is falling for him. Though the idea weirds him out at first, it doesn’t bother him too much since they are so far removed. They come together for a brief time, but the road ahead of them is not as clear as Bobby had hoped. When Bobby’s vacation comes to an end, he’s faced with the painful prospect of saying goodbye.

Home for the Holidays is an emotional and sweet holiday book. I loved how the author takes us to Italy, and I felt like I was actually there in Capri. The vivid descriptions ignited my wanderlust, making me want to travel to Italy. As for the characters, they are both very likeable. Paolo is a muscular, attractive young Italian man. He’s confident sexually, but when it comes to relationships, he doesn’t imagine he can have that. He’s grown up in a place where it’s okay to express his sexuality behind closed doors, but he doesn’t expect to have more. However, Bobby knows what he wants and isn’t afraid to reach for the stars when it comes to love.

Since the first book I read from Joe Cosentino ended in a tragedy, I was surprised and overjoyed with the ending of this book. I recommend A Home for the Holidays to anyone who loves travel adventures, Christmas themes, and m/m romance.

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You can buy A Home for the Holidays here:

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Joe Cosentino

Guest Post: A Home for the Holidays by Joe Cosentino

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Hello, the Novel Approach Readers! I’m visiting here today to tell you a bit about how I came to write my brand new holiday short novella, A Home for the Holidays from Dreamspinner Press, which takes place in gorgeous, romantic, and magical Capri, Italy!

After writing two Bittersweet Dreams novellas, An Infatuation and A Shooting Star (In My Heart Series) published by Dreamspinner Press, and a comedy mystery, Drama Queen the first Nicky and Noah mystery published by Lethe Press, I needed a vacation. So like Kunta Kinte charting his roots, my spouse and I dipped into our savings—and dipped into the Dramamine, and booked a flight and bus tour from the US to Rome, Naples, Venice, Assisi, Lake Como, Milan, Florence, the Amalphi Coast, Pompeii, Tuscany, and Lake Maggiore. We were exhausted, but we had the vacation of a lifetime seeing the most gorgeous architecture, natural resources, and views of any of our trip. We also ate delicious food and reveled in the art, history, and beauty (noticing all the statues were of very muscular, naked men). The people were warm and friendly as was the weather. However, there was no site more gorgeous, magical, and romantic than the Island of Capri.

While on the boat ride to the Marina Grande, the sight of the enormous cliffs sitting majestically on the water literally took our breath away. From the funiculare (cable car) we marveled at the stunning views of the island below and Mt. Vesuvius in the distance. At the Piazetta (main plaza) we boarded an island bus that zoomed around harrowing, tight corners like a car in a Fun House. We travelled to Via Krupp in the southern part of the island, and we walked through what Italians call “the villas of the rich and famous,” underscored by the sparkling turquoise sea below. We swam in gorgeous white sand beaches surrounded by artistic white stone formations like Marina Piccola. When we arrived at Mt. Solaro, our guide told us it was highest point on the Isle of Capri, five hundred and eighty-nine meters above sea level. As we looked out at the fog, the sun came up and the wind blew the vapors of fog upwards, crowning the clouds, and revealing stunning views of the Bay of Naples, the Amalfi Coast, and the mountains of Calabria in the distance. As we looked out over the turquoise water, white mountains, and azure sky, I felt like I was in heaven. However, the most magical of all was the Grotta Azzurra (the Blue Grotto). As our boat went through the tiny portal of the expansive cave, my breath was taken away by the water’s brilliant shades of iridescent sapphire and emerald from the sun’s reflection on the water in the cove. Capri also had the most amazing restaurants and shops on the water’s edge. And the people somehow all seemed beautiful and sensuous.

Upon arriving back in the US, I realized I had to write a romantic story taking place in Capri.

In my story, Bobby, a young, Italian American law student, travels to Capri to meet his quaint Italian relatives. Though they get off to a rocky start, he falls in love with his handsome, muscular, sexy Italian third cousin, Paolo. Their relationship with highs and lows and some captivating surprises is the core of the short novella. Since I come from a long line of funny Italian Americans, I included a good deal of humor in the story as well with Bobby’s mother, who is loosely based on my mother, and Paolo’s eccentric family. Paolo’s grandmother is really a riot. She is loosely based on my grandmother who said, “A boy leaves home with a wife or in a coffin.”

Like Harold in An Infatuation and Jonathan in A Shooting Star, Bobby is sweet, sensitive, and smart. As a law student, he has buried his head in his books. As the novella begins, he is ready for an adventure—and ready for first love. Like Mario in An Infatuation and David in A Shooting Star, Paolo is handsome, muscular, charismatic, and like many people in Italy, much more interested in love than in work. He is also a gifted artist. Unlike Bobby, Paolo is very experienced in matters of the heart. Paolo loves the finer things in life, but doesn’t want to work for them. He is quite concerned about his body, clothing, and social life. That is a foreign (no pun intended) concept to me. He is loosely based on my cousin’s cousin who lives in Italy.

After reading A Home for the Holidays, people have said they’ve taken a little trip to Capri and had the romance of a lifetime. I hope readers will pick up this short novella. It’s a lot cheaper than a trip to Italy, and is bursting with the sights, scents, sounds, tastes, and romance of the magnificent island of Capri!

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HomeFortheHolidayscoverBlurb: Bobby McGrath’s Christmas trip to the beautiful Italian Island of Capri to meet his eccentric, extended family offers stunning views—none more stunning than his third cousin, Paolo Mascobello, a real stocking stuffer. As the two young men embark on a relationship, Bobby, a driven law student, learns to relax and bask under the old Italian moon, and Paolo realizes there’s more to life than a frolic on the beach. For the two to find everlasting amore, Paulo must overcome his fear of commitment and learn to follow his dreams, and Bobby must get his wish for happily ever after.

Buy Links: Dreamspinner Press || Amazon || All Romance eBooks || Barnes & Noble

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Excerpt: “Bobby, every Christmas your father and I buy you a nice gift and you return it. So this year before we go shopping, I’m asking you. What do you want for Christmas, exactly?”

I was tempted to answer, “How about the new Zeb Atlas DVD, Mom?” No longer reading my law textbook, I pressed the cell phone against my ear and responded, “My red sweater is getting frayed. I guess I could use a new one, Mom.”

“I don’t like red on you. I’ll get you a green sweater. It will go nicely with your eyes. You’ll be twenty-four in June. Nobody ever caught a husband wearing red clothes, except for Mrs. Klaus, and then look how overweight he was.”

I adjusted the heavy book on my knees and leaned back against the headboard of my narrow dorm room bed. Since fall semester of my third year of law school was over, my roommate had already gone back to Utah to be with his father and three mothers. Normally I would go home for the holidays.

As far back as I can remember, every December twenty-third through the twenty-fifth my mother works herself to exhaustion while forbidding anyone to help her. Since I am not married, I am seated at the kiddy table, where I dodge meatball and manicotti grenades courtesy of my little nieces and nephews. Then the gifts are bestowed with price tags on them so we all know “How many hours your father and I had to work to be able to buy our children such beautiful things.” This is followed by “oohs” and “ahhs” for every gift except the presents from me, which garner comments from my parents and two sisters like, “Oh well, I can wear that for dress-down day at work… if I keep on my coat.” After the extended family of aunts, uncles, and cousins arrive for dessert (cannoli grenades at the kiddy table), my mother’s side (the Mascobellos) eat the pastries, and my father’s side (the McGraths) drink the liqueurs, while I sit upstairs in my old bedroom reading law case decisions on the Internet.

This Christmas is going to be different. Throughout my childhood I heard stories about my mother’s now deceased father who had a first cousin in Capri, Italy. Mom, “too exhausted from taking care of all of you to survive such a journey,” had recently spoken on the phone to her deceased father’s cousin’s daughter-in-law (got that?), and the two women had arranged for me to spend this Christmas with my Italian relatives. This led to my Christmas in Italy with my Italian cousin, Paolo Mascobello.

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Author BioAbout the Author: Amazon Bestselling author Joe Cosentino wrote An Infatuation, A Shooting Star, A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press), Drama Queen the first Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), Paper Doll the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, Charles Keating, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming releases in 2016 are The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press short stories novella), Porcelain Doll the second Jana Lane mystery (Wild Rose Press), and Drama Muscle the second Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press).

Website || Facebook || Twitter || Goodreads || Amazon

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4 Stars, Dreamspinner Press, Genre Romance, Joe Cosentino, Reviewed by Lisa

Review: A Shooting Star by Joe Cosentino

Title: A Shooting Star (An In My Heart Novella )

Author: Joe Cosentino

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 98 Pages

At a Glance: This novella deliberately mines a deeper, darker, more emotional vein than book one in the “In My Heart” series.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: On the eve of the best night of his life, winning an Academy Award, Jonathan Bello thinks back to his one great love, David Star.

Flipping back the pages of time, Jonathan recalls his handsome, muscular, and charismatic college roommate. Since Jonathan was a freshman and David a senior in the Theatre Department, David took Jonathan under his wing and molded him, not only as an actor but as a lover. With every wonderful new adventure, David left his joyful mark on anyone with whom they came in contact, but Jonathan soon uncovered David’s dark past, leading to a shocking event. Undaunted, Jonathan celebrates the captivating man who will always hold a special place in his heart.

A Bittersweet Dreams title: It’s an unfortunate truth: love doesn’t always conquer all. Regardless of its strength, sometimes fate intervenes, tragedy strikes, or forces conspire against it. These stories of romance do not offer a traditional happy ending, but the strong and enduring love will still touch your heart and maybe move you to tears.

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Review: As in his novella An Infatuation, book one in the “In My Heart” series, author Joe Cosentino once again takes a brief and bittersweet look at love in A Shooting Star, the story of a love unrequited—or, rather, a love resisted by a young man who thought himself undeserving of the gift.

Once again taking place in the world of theater, a profession of which the author writes with no small amount of authority and personal experience, A Shooting Star contains all of the emotional drama but perhaps a bit less of the levity of its predecessor in this series. This novella deliberately mines a deeper, darker, more emotional vein as we watch college senior and theater major David Star take freshman Johnny Falabella under his wing, transform him into Jonathan Bello, and then proceed to keep Jonathan at an emotional arm’s length while also gathering the young and virginal Johnny into the irresistible orbit that is David Star.

David himself is a contrast, seeming at once a one-dimensional stereotype, when in reality, David is a student of life who possesses a deft hand at not only reading people but relating to them on a personal level. Every encounter David wades into, luring Johnny along with him—whether it’s hitchhiking with strangers, chatting up a teenage throwaway in a nightclub, or charming the girl at the movie theater box office—David uses these moments as a means of counselling and showing the reader a more layered look into his character. But, he also uses those moments as a teaching tool to help Johnny tap into a deeper well of method acting. In the end, we also learn that David’s life isn’t at all as shiny and golden as it might seem on the surface, notching our empathy level up along with those revelations.

There is a recurring theme in this series, it being that first love isn’t always a lasting love, and that even a tragic end doesn’t necessarily mean the end of happiness; it simply means these characters–in this case, Johnny–followed a bit of a different path to find a love that was right there in front of him all along. A love that was built upon friendship. This theme is delivered with charm and an undeniable truth that resonates with anyone who has loved and lost, and then, has gone on to love again.

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You can buy A Shooting Star here:

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Guest Post and Giveaway: The A Shooting Star Blog Tour with Joe Cosentino

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Today we’re so pleased to welcome author Joe Cosentino back to The Novel Approach, on the tour for his new novella from Dreamspinner Press, A Shooting Star. Please join us in welcoming Joe, and be sure to click on the Rafflecopter widget below for the chance to win an e-copy of the book An Infatuation, book one in the My Heart series.

Good luck!

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A COLLEGE THEATRE DEPARTMENT: THE PERFECT PLACE FOR DRAMA

Writing A Shooting Star, a Bittersweet Dreams novella, the second the In My Heart series

by Joe Cosentino, published by Dreamspinner Press

After my Bittersweet Dreams novella, An Infatuation, was released by Dreamspinner Press, I received numerous requests from readers for a second novella in the In My Heart series. Since An Infatuation was loosely based on my high school days through adulthood, I thought back to my days as a theatre major in college, and A Shooting Star was born.

Like most college theatre departments, mine was full of comedy, romance, mystery, and of course drama. The flames of love were kindled and hearts were broken while we put up play after play for delighted audiences who never knew the personal secrets behind the stage curtains. There was the star student who got the leading role in every show. Everyone, male and female, was in love with him, and he was in love with himself. There was also the class clown, the temptress, the manipulator, the humanitarian, everybody’s best friend, and (as they say on Gilligan’s Island) the rest. As we learned our acting craft, we learned solid lessons about life. We met and fell in love, some for a semester, some for four years, and some for a lifetime. Though we now live states apart, we forged friendships that will also continue (thanks to Facebook). Some became famous in films, television, on Broadway, or in the literary arena. Others moved on to other occupations. Still others chose marriage and children. Regardless, we all shared an incredible experience that binds us. An experience none of us will ever forget.

In A Shooting Star, new college theatre major Jonathan meets the gorgeous, muscular, tantalizing, and mysterious upper classroom and theatre department star aptly named David Star. As David grooms Jonathan for college life and for stardom, Jonathan falls deeply in love with him. This leads Jonathan on an inner and outer journey, where he learns some shocking secrets about David, and about himself. As a remembrance story, the novella begins with Jonathan having just received the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Film, as he thinks back to the person who was responsible for his win.

Like Harold in An Infatuation, Jonathan in A Shooting Star is loosely based on me, though I haven’t won an Academy Award—yet. He is ingenuous, funny, warm, gullible, and has an open heart. As is the case with Stuart in An Infatuation, Barry, Jonathan’s loyal scene partner in A Shooting Star, is loosely based on my spouse. Similar to Mario in An Infatuation, David in A Shooting Star is a combination of a number of young men I met as a theatre major in college and as a young actor. They were gay, bi, closet-gay, or straight. Each was handsome, muscular, charismatic, sensuous, and almost other-worldly like Greek gods. Though they appeared to hold the world in the palm of their strong hands, they each had a secret weakness. The acting professor, the hysterically funny hypochondriac Professor Katzer, is a lampooned version of an acting professor I had in college who has since passed away. I want to play that role in the movie version!

A Shooting Star isn’t the first time that I wrote about the theatre department at a university. My Nicky and Noah mystery series from Lethe Press takes place at Treemeadow College, a fictitious white stone Edwardian New England college. In the first novel, Drama Queen, college theatre professors Nicky Abbondanza and Noah Oliver have to uncover why their colleagues are falling like stage curtains—while they fall in love with one another. Though the novel is a farcical, gay, who-dun-it, I again was able to think back to my college days and incorporate some of the people and happenings from days gone by. I was also able to use some scenarios, though grossly exaggerated, from my current stint as a college theatre professor/department head.

Just as I believe we left our New Jersey college community a better place when we graduated, Jonathan and David leave their Colorado college community members in an exalted state. Theatre is a very powerful medium to change lives on stage and in the audience. I hope readers are moved and changed by Jonathan and David’s story. I also hope everyone who reads A Shooting Star finds his/her life changed for the better having known Jonathan, David, Barry, Professor Katzer, and their community.

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Shooting Star coverBlurb: On the eve of the best night of his life, winning an Academy Award, Jonathan Bello thinks back to his one great love, David Star. Flipping back the pages of time, Jonathan recalls his handsome, muscular, and charismatic college roommate. Since Jonathan was a freshman and David a senior in the Theatre Department, David took Jonathan under his wing and molded him, not only as an actor but as a lover. With every wonderful new adventure, David left his joyful mark on anyone with whom they came in contact, but Jonathan soon uncovered David’s dark past, leading to a shocking event. Undaunted, Jonathan celebrates the captivating man who will always hold a special place in his heart.

A Bittersweet Dreams title: It’s an unfortunate truth: love doesn’t always conquer all. Regardless of its strength, sometimes fate intervenes, tragedy strikes, or forces conspire against it. These stories of romance do not offer a traditional happy ending, but the strong and enduring love will still touch your heart and maybe move you to tears.

Buy Links: Dreamspinner Press || Amazon || All Romance eBooks || Barnes & Noble

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Author BioAbout the Author: Joe Cosentino is the author of An Infatuation and A Shooting Star (Dreamspinner Press), Paper Doll the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), Drama Queen the first Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming novels are A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press holiday novella), The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press short stories novella), Porcelain Doll the second Jana Lane mystery (Wild Rose Press), and Drama Muscle the second Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press).

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THE GIVEAWAY

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Joe Cosentino

Guest Post: Drama Queen Audio Release by Joe Cosentino

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I was always a ham as a kid, forcing my unsuspecting parents and neighbors to watch my lavish musicals in the garage. After college I became a professional actor, working in film, television, and theatre opposite stars like Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Bruce Willis, Charles Keating, Jason Robards, and Holland Taylor. Moving on to playwriting and ultimately writing novels seemed like an obvious next step. My novels have received mostly good reviews, and many readers comment on how theatrical they are, including a great deal of dialogue, humor, plot twists, unusual characters, and drama. Everyone tells me they would make great audiobooks, television series, and/or movies.

As a theatre college professor I realized theatre departments at colleges are little communities of romance, drama, comedy, mystery, and surprises. They make great fodder for novels. So I created the Nicky and Noah mystery series published by Lethe Press. In Drama Queen, Nicky and Noah have to uncover why college theatre professors are dropping like stage curtains while Nicky directs the college play production—a murder mystery. In Drama Muscle (not yet released), Nicky and Noah have to find out why musclemen are dropping like weights in the Physical Education department while Nicky directs the Student Bodybuilding Competition. In Drama Cruise (not yet released), Nicky and Noah go on a cruise to Alaska, and discover why college theatre professors are going overboard like lifeboats while Nicky directs a murder mystery dinner theatre show onboard ship.

The first novel, Drama Queen, frequently has been in the top #18 in its category on Amazon Kindle’s bestseller list since its release, and the paperback is also doing well. Again everyone told me it should be made into an audiobook and/or television series. So I was thrilled when Steve Berman told me Lethe Press was producing an audio version of the book. With twenty-four characters of all ages/races/genders/sexualities/personalities (one bipolar), as well as Nicky and Noah using their theatre skills to impersonate other people during their investigation, it was important to find the right narrator, Michael Gilboe. Not only is Michael a gifted actor, character voice artist, and hardworking professional, he is a college theatre professor and director just like Nicky Abbondanza, my leading character. Michael also has a dry wit in his reading, which fits the wacky humor of the series. It was great fun working with him on this audiobook. He did an amazing job bringing the characters to life.

The audiobook was just released on Audible and Amazon, available for download on any audio device or computer. I think listeners will enjoy Michael’s performance, and be captivated by the clues, red herrings, reversals, and surprise ending of the story. Hopefully listeners will embrace Nicky and Noah, and look forward to their next adventure. I want to play Martin Anderson, the department head, in the television series!

~Joe Cosentino

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Drama Queen AudioBlurb: It could be curtains for college theatre professor Nicky Abbondanza. With dead bodies popping up all over campus, Nicky must use his drama skills to figure out who is playing the role of murderer before it is lights out for Nicky and his colleagues. Complicating matters is Nicky’s huge crush on Noah Oliver, a gorgeous assistant professor in his department, who may or may not be involved with a cocky graduate assistant…and is also the top suspect for the murders! You will be applauding and shouting Bravo for Joe Cosentino’s fast-paced, side-splittingly funny, edge-of-your-seat, delightfully entertaining novel. Curtain up!

Buy Links: Amazon | Audible.com

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About the Author: Joe Cosentino is the author of Drama Queen the first Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), An Infatuation (Dreamspinner Press), Paper Doll the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming novels are Drama Muscle the second Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), A Shooting Star (Dreamspinner Press novella), A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press holiday novella),The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press fairytale novella), and Porcelain Doll the second Jana Lane mystery (Wild Rose Press).

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon

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4 Stars, Genre Romance, Joe Cosentino, Lethe Press, Mystery/Suspense/Action Thriller, Reviewed by Lisa

Review: Drama Queen by Joe Cosentino

Title: Drama Queen (A Nicky and Noah Mystery)

Author: Joe Cosentino

Publisher: Lethe Press

Pages/Word Count: 196 Pages

At a Glance: Drama Queen is a comedic and cozy little murder mystery with a side of romance.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: It could be curtains for college theatre professor Nicky Abbondanza. With dead bodies popping up all over campus, Nicky must use his drama skills to figure out who is playing the role of murderer before it is lights out for Nicky and his colleagues. Complicating matters is Nicky’s huge crush on Noah Oliver, a gorgeous assistant professor in his department, who may or may not be involved with a cocky graduate assistant…and is also the top suspect for the murders! You will be applauding and shouting Bravo for Joe Cosentino’s fast-paced, side-splittingly funny, edge-of-your-seat, delightfully entertaining novel. Curtain up!

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Review: Joe Cosentino’s Drama Queen takes readers behind the curtain at Treemeadow College, a fictional school set in the fictional town of Treemeadow, Vermont—perhaps the last place on earth one might expect to happen upon a series of murders. But, that is indeed what we find within the pages of this book: a murder mystery, a comedic romp, an investigative caper, and a love story all rolled up into one nifty little novel that never takes itself too seriously, leaves us rooting for its amateur sleuthing duo, Professors Nicky Abbondanza and Noah Oliver, and places this novel firmly in the category of a tried and true cozy mystery.

There’s a play-within-the-play feeling to this story, in that Cosentino makes us, the readers, his audience, as though we’re watching a theatrical performance he’s scripting and directing as the story moves forward, all while the actors are moving from scene to scene and including us in the show. There’s a play in pre-production at Treemeadow, too, but someone keeps bumping off faculty members, one by one, which leads to the theater department’s eventual closure, and leaves Nicky and Noah to team up as our pseud0 Holmes/Watson investigative team, not only to help find the killer but to help clear Noah as a suspect.

The author keeps things close to the vest as the story unfolds—there are a slew of players, both major and minor, which leaves us with plenty of red herrings, each with possible motives and sufficient opportunity to make them a plausible suspect in the crimes. As Nicky and Noah make their way through this cat and mouse caper, and the body count continues to rise, we also watch these two playful and charming men fall crazy in love with each other, which gives Drama Queen just the right heartwarming tone to add to its blend of lightheartedness and drama.

If you’re ever on the outlook for a sweet romance with a murderous bite that’ll tickle your funny bone too, consider giving this coziest of cozies a try.

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You can buy Drama Queen here:

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Guest Post and Giveaway: Drama Queen by Joe Cosentino

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Author Joe Cosentino joins us today to chat a bit about his latest novel Drama Queen and is also offering the chance for one lucky reader to win an e-copy of his Dreamspinner Press novella An Infatuation. To enter for your chance to win, just click on the Rafflecopter widget below.

Good luck!

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WHY I WROTE A NEW GAY MYSTERY/COMEDY/ROMANCE SERIES

THE NICKY AND NOAH MYSTERIES

PREMIERING WITH DRAMA QUEEN, PUBLISHED BY LETHE PRESS

by Joe Cosentino

A good who-dun-it, a good laugh, and a good spark of romance are hard to beat. I have always been a huge Agatha Christie fan and a loyal Armistead Maupin reader. What I love most about their novels are the sense of mystery, plot twists and turns, clever humor, and unexpected yet totally earned endings. So I decided to write a new gay mystery/comedy/romance series along that vein. As a theatre college professor/department head, I set my series on a college campus in a fictitious, quaint, private New England campus. The Nicky and Noah mystery series was born.

The setting is an Edwardian style university founded originally by a gay couple (Tree and Meadow) whose name the university bares: Treemeadow College. In the first novel, it is winter, so white snow, cherry wood mantels surrounding blazing fireplaces, and hot chocolate are in abundance. In the second book, it is fall, so gorgeous leaves of amber, violet, and scarlet blanket the campus. The third book takes us on cruise to Alaska for sights of glaciers and whales.

As Drama Queen (book one) begins, David Samson, the technical theatre professor, is found with a knife from the prop room lodged in his back. The suspects include David’s wife and son who stand to inherit a fortune, David’s two hunky graduates assistants who are desperate for his job, the mysterious movement professor who Samson didn’t support for tenure, the department head David wanted to unseat, David’s two ex-lovers, and his four students with a joint secret. When the local police are stumped, including a studly closet-gay detective, it is up to handsome, well-endowed Nicky Abbondanza, Professor of Directing, to moonlight from directing the college production and use his theatre skills to find the murderer. Complicating matters is Nicky’s intense crush on gorgeous Assistant Professor of Acting, Noah Oliver, the prime suspect in the murder (whose tenure application was not supported by the victim).

Nicky has his sleuthing cut out for him as Treemeadow theatre professors continue to drop like stage curtains. Since Noah finds each of the bodies, Nicky must not only restore justice to Treemeadow, but also save the man he adores.

As Nicky and Noah eavesdrop, seduce, role play, and finally trap the murderer, pandemonium, hilarity, and true love ensue for a happily ever after ending—until the next book. In Drama Muscle, Nicky and Noah don their gay Holmes and Watson personas again to find out who is murdering musclemen in the Physical Education Department. In the third book, Drama Cruise, Nicky and Noah embark on a cruise to Alaska while putting on murder mystery dinner theatre—and solving a real murder mystery onboard ship.

Readers will enjoy getting to know quick-witted sleuth Nicky and sweet, loyal Noah. They’ll find the clues, red herrings, plot twists, and puzzles captivating. Fans will love the budding romance between them. Most of all, readers will laugh at the hijinks, hysteria, and unquenchable spirits of Nicky and Noah. As the two fall in love with each other, the readers will fall in love with them.

So grab your program and take your box seat. The curtain is going up on this new series. Lights up!

Drama Queen is available at the following e-tailers: Lethe Press (paperback) | Amazon (Kindle) | Amazon (paperback) | Barnes & Noble

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Author BioAbout the Author: Joe Cosentino is the author of An Infatuation (Dreamspinner Press), Paper Doll, the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), Drama Queen, the first Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming novels are Porcelain Doll (the second Jana Lane mystery), Drama Muscle (the second Nicky and Noah mystery), A Shooting Star (Dreamspinner Press novella), A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press holiday novella).

You can find out more about Joe at his website joecosentino.weebly.com

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THE GIVEAWAY:

An Infatuation: With his ten-year high school reunion approaching, Harold wonders whether Mario will be as muscular, sexy, and tantalizing as he remembers. As a teenager, it was love at first sight for Harold while tutoring football star Mario, until homophobia and bullying drove Mario deep into the closet. Now they’re both married men. Mario, a model, is miserable with his producer wife, while Harold, a teacher, is perfectly content with his businessman husband, Stuart. When the two meet again, will the old flame reignite, setting Harold’s comfortable life ablaze? How can Harold be happy with Stuart when he is still infatuated with his Adonis, his first love, Mario? Harold faces this seemingly impossible situation with inimitable wit, tenderness, and humor as he attempts to reconcile the past and the future.

A Bittersweet Dreams title: It’s an unfortunate truth: love doesn’t always conquer all. Regardless of its strength, sometimes fate intervenes, tragedy strikes, or forces conspire against it. These stories of romance do not offer a traditional happy ending, but the strong and enduring love will still touch your heart and maybe move you to tears.

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Joe Cosentino, Lethe Press

Release Day Excerpt: Drama Queen by Joe Cosentino

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It could be curtains for college theatre professor Nicky Abbondanza. With dead bodies popping up all over campus, Nicky must use his drama skills to figure out who is playing the role of murderer before it is lights out for Nicky and his colleagues. Complicating matters is Nicky’s huge crush on Noah Oliver, a gorgeous assistant professor in his department, who may or may not be involved with a cocky graduate assistant…and is also the top suspect for the murders! You will be applauding and shouting Bravo for Joe Cosentino’s fast-paced, side-splittingly funny, edge-of-your-seat, delightfully entertaining novel. Curtain up!

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Joe Cosentino is the author of An Infatuation (Dreamspinner Press), Paper Doll the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming novels are Drama Muscle the second Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), A Shooting Star (Dreamspinner Press novella), A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press holiday novella), and Porcelain Doll the second Jana Lane mystery.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon

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DramaQueencoverExcerpt: Surrounded by darkness, I sat tensely watching as a young, beautiful man lay on the floor with blood dripping off his six-pack abs. I held my breath. Another muscular young man stood over the first and looked down with a vengeful gaze and devious smirk. My heart pounded as he strutted through the quiet street in his long flowing cape, weaving from corpse to corpse. His knife, erect, poised. “The Lord is vengeful and strong in wrath. And revenge is oh so sweet,” he said.

“Blackout then lights up!”

Tyler, the technical theatre graduate assistant running the lighting board, hit a button, and our Treemeadow College theatre once again sported its Victorian proscenium, cream-colored walls, maple wood wainscoting, bronze wall sconces, and ruby red stage curtain.

Sitting behind the director’s desk (actually a wooden plank temporarily set up in the center of the audience seating area) I scribbled a last note before shouting, “Good work, everyone! Please get out of costume and make-up as quickly as possible and join me in the first two rows of the house for notes.”

Students scurried about: the actors off the stage; the technicians behind the set securing lighting and prop pieces.

Since it is tech week for my show, I have been working in our Edwardian style theatre every evening alongside our workaholic technical director. Tyler Thompson is our technical theatre professor’s graduate assistant, who like all good technical directors, eats, sleeps, breathes, and basically lives in our Scene Shop behind the stage. Standing at five feet tall with mountainous shoulders, a broad back, powerful arms, thick hands, and stick legs, Tyler rules over all things sound, lights, projections, set pieces, and props at Treemeadow College. When he leaves, we will be at a total loss to find or do anything technical in our theatre.

Sets for plays used to consist of wooden flats screwed together to create the walls of a room or a slide projection of a building. Nowadays no set is worth its weight in a Tony Award if it doesn’t include moving film projections of farmland, urban settings, fireworks, or whatever exterior is called for in a given scene.

“I’ll fix the video of the street scene for tomorrow night, Nicky.” Tyler slumped in a chair next to me as the familiar smell of pepperoni, his staple food, and sawdust stung my nose. He wore his usual techie attire: a soiled white T-shirt under frayed overalls above worn workboats. This look was accented by a gold cross around his neck, tattoos on his arms (like an illustrated book with words, numbers, and pictures), and long, stringy, unwashed hair. Tyler scratched at his beard, a result of him not having shaved (or washed) since we started tech. “I also want to fix the sound cue for the siren, and change a few gels for the red wash across the stage during the murders.”

Before I could thank Tyler, David Samson, Professor of Technical Theatre and our show’s Scenic Designer, barreled down the theatre aisle like a bull in a field of tomatoes, shouting, “Tyler!” David is an imposing six feet two inches tall, weighing about a hundred and eighty pounds with a shaved head.

Tyler froze, and replied like a convicted chemical dumper facing an environmental lynch mob. “Yes, David?”

“You didn’t add in the new light cue I gave you for the top of Act II.”

“I’ll have it for tomorrow night,” Tyler said.

David’s strong features hardened. “Your procrastination and laziness are not acceptable.” He scowled. “Do it now.

“Sure, David,” Tyler responded as he leapt off the theatre seat and hurried into the lighting booth at the back of the theatre.

I came to Tyler’s defense. “David, Tyler has done an amazing job—”

“Nicky, the pacing of the show is too slow. The blocking isn’t balanced. The actors aren’t committing fully to their roles and to listening to one another. This comes as no surprise to me since our Acting professor is as incompetent as you are, Nicky, as our Directing professor. Unfortunately, it seems you’d rather flirt with one another than get to work! This is a disgrace to our department!” David raised his arms in the air like a preacher facing an unrepentant congregation. “You’re the director, Nicky. And I use that term lightly. Your other shows have been insulting to the intelligence of the audience, but this one has reached the pinnacle of being even worse! Will even you let an audience see this repugnant crap?”

“David, this is not the time or place to have this discussion.”

Purchase Drama Queen at: Lethe Press (Paperback) | Amazon (Paperback) | Amazon (Kindle) | Smashwords

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4.5 Stars, Dreamspinner Press, Joe Cosentino, Literary Fiction, Reviewed by Lisa

Review: An Infatuation by Joe Cosentino

Title: An Infatuation

Author: Joe Cosentino

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Pages/Word Count: 103 Pages

At a Glance: An Infatuation is a sweet and simple tale with a nontraditional happy ending, one that will break your heart and make you smile in spite of it.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: With his ten-year high school reunion approaching, Harold wonders whether Mario will be as muscular, sexy, and tantalizing as he remembers. As a teenager, it was love at first sight for Harold while tutoring football star Mario, until homophobia and bullying drove Mario deep into the closet. Now they’re both married men. Mario, a model, is miserable with his producer wife, while Harold, a teacher, is perfectly content with his businessman husband, Stuart. When the two meet again, will the old flame reignite, setting Harold’s comfortable life ablaze? How can Harold be happy with Stuart when he is still infatuated with his Adonis, his first love, Mario? Harold faces this seemingly impossible situation with inimitable wit, tenderness, and humor as he attempts to reconcile the past and the future.

A Bittersweet Dreams title: It’s an unfortunate truth: love doesn’t always conquer all. Regardless of its strength, sometimes fate intervenes, tragedy strikes, or forces conspire against it. These stories of romance do not offer a traditional happy ending, but the strong and enduring love will still touch your heart and maybe move you to tears.

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Review: Joe Cosentino proves there’s more than one way to a happy ending in An Infatuation, a story of first love and heartbreak delivered in a fresh and funny voice.

Harold High gets the chance of a teenage lifetime when he’s asked to tutor football hunk Mario Ginetti, but before you go about thinking this is yet another nerd/jock high school romance, let me assure you it’s not. Harold’s teaching methods and Mario’s endearing obtuseness add a layer of charm to this already humorous, if not unlikely relationship, and watching the equally unlikely friendship that grows between the two boys was poignant in its inevitable conclusion.

Told in flashbacks, Harold is now a happily married man, whose husband, Stuart, plays along in the telling of this tale, acting as sidekick to both Harold and the reader. The author’s method of delivering Stuart’s choicest lines was an original twist to the narrative, and I couldn’t help but love it because in only a few words, Cosentino brings Stuart to the fore of the plot in spite of his not appearing throughout much of the story, giving readers the opportunity to connect with him and sense not only the devotion he feels for his husband but the security of their marriage as well.

Where the author sets up the tragedy of An Infatuation is through Mario. Mario is the stereotype: he’s the loveable dumb jock with the overbearing father, who can’t be gay, who can’t possibly fall for a guy like Harold. He’s the boy who has to date the cheerleader and marry her and have the white picket fence and 2.2 kids in order to comply with the status quo. And it’s through Mario that we see the contrast between what his life becomes—a life of denial—and where Harold has ended up—living a fulfilled life with a wonderful man, even though he’s never forgotten his first love.

The anticipation builds toward Harold and Mario’s reunion, ten years after their high school graduation, and their meeting evolves in a will they/won’t they moment of truth. There is a sadness that plays out in the different paths their lives have taken, one that culminates in the unexpected and bittersweet ending this story’s blurb promises. Joe Cosentino delivers it at just the right moment and in the most touching of ways, proving sometimes there are no second chance at first love. And yes, there were tears, and yes, they were earned through skillful manipulation on the author’s part, making us care for these characters and investing in them and their story.

An Infatuation is a sweet and simple tale with a nontraditional happy ending, one that will break your heart and make you smile in spite of it.






You can buy An Infatuation here:

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Dreamspinner Press, Giveaways, Joe Cosentino

Interview, Excerpt, and Giveaway: An Infatuation by Joe Cosentino

An Infatuation

THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED

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Q: What inspired you to start writing, especially your novella AN INFATUATION?

Joe: As a kid I played make believe constantly. “Let’s put on a show!” was my motto. I played all the characters—male and female. Hm, that explains a lot. Thankfully my parents and teachers indulged me rather than committed me. I always enjoyed improvisation as an actor, and I see writing as an extension of that. It also keeps the mind sharp, which is much appreciated as I get older.

When I told my mother I wanted to be an actor, she said, “Take this knife and stick it through my heart.” I did it anyway, and acted on stage and screen with stars like Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Holland Taylor, Jason Robards, and Nathan Lane. As my students say, “You were cute when you were young!” Anyway, it occurred to me that acting is storytelling in the same way that writing is storytelling, so I decided to give playwriting a try. When I told my mother I wanted to write fiction, she said, “Don’t you have anything better to do?” I wonder if Shakespeare’s mother said that?

I knew my first novella would be a bit autobiographical, but have a universal theme. Hasn’t everyone been infatuated with someone? I was thinking back to my high school days, and how difficult it was back then for a gay teen before GLSEN, PFLAG, and Will and Grace. Lab partners, gym locker rooms, and club meetings where super important. At my high school reunion, I realized things weren’t what they seemed back then. A story was born. It began as a one-act play, which I expanded and morphed into a novella.

Q: Tell us about the characters in AN INFATUATION.

Joe: Harold is based on me. Actually, I really admire Harold’s resilience, honesty, intelligence, wit, and ability to keep going in trying situations. His heart may be broken, but his spirit always stays intact. Harold’s devotion to his spouse, Stuart, is admirable, as is his honesty about his teenage infatuation with Mario. I love that the story spans twenty years so we see Harold (and Mario) develop and mature.

Stuart was great fun to write, because he is based on my spouse who is totally organized and a real list maker, but also sweet, creative, and caring. He creates an itinerary for our trips in ten minute time blocks!

Mario is a combination of many supposedly straight, perfect guys who gay guys so easily become infatuated with every day. I love that Harold and Mario come full circle at their high school reunion.

It is always hard for me to write homophobic characters. How nonsensical is it for someone to spend his/her time, money, and energy trying to hurt, belittle, or take away the rights of someone else? In most cases, the homophobic person is gay him/herself, and due to internalized homophobia, is battling with him/herself via the gay target. That is the case with the two homophobic characters in my novel.

Q: How do you imagine the ideal reader of your book?

Joe: My ideal reader is a lover of a good story, someone who craves being swept away and becoming part of the novel. My reader enjoys humor, and being taken on a roller coaster ride. Finally, my reader relishes in captivating characters and earth-shattering romance, as she/he willingly enters the portal of my book. That’s why I love hearing from my readers!

Q: What tips would you give other writers, when creating comedy in their own writing?

Joe: When a reader finishes a book, he/she should be satisfied that the various parts equaled the whole, rather than the author pulling an ending out of the hat. I recommend not writing jokes to try to be funny. Let the humor come out of the situations and the characters naturally. People are funny, but only in real life, believable situations. And don’t forget the yang side of comedy is tragedy, and find the emotional core of your characters and story. As the old expression goes, “Make ‘em laugh then make ‘em cry.” That’s why I love Bittersweet Dreams books.

Q: What other books have you written? And what are you working on now?

Joe: My MF mystery/romance series, the Jana Lane mysteries, premieres March 18 with PAPER DOLL from Whiskey Creek Press. PORCELAIN DOLL will follow shortly. My MM mystery/romance/comedy series, the Nicky and Noah mysteries, premieres this summer with DRAMA QUEEN from Lethe Press. DRAMA MUSCLE will follow shortly. I just finished a new MM romance Bittersweet Dreams novella, A SHOOTING STAR, and am currently working on a new MM romance novella, A HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS. I am also working on the third Nicky and Noah mystery book (DRAMA CRUISE), and the third Jana Lane mystery book (SATIN DOLL).

Q: Which roles do you want to play in the movie versions of your books?

Joe: I think my books would make terrific films! Here are the roles I would play:

AN INFATUATION: Mr. Ringwood, high school principal
PAPER DOLL: Simon Huckby, movie agent
DRAMA QUEEN: Martin Anderson, college professor/department head
A SHOOTING STAR: Professor Katzer, college professor
A HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS: walk by in a cameo a la Alfred Hitchcock

So come on movie producers!

Q: What advice would you give to other writers in the M/M genre?

Joe: I love reading and writing stories with engaging characters who I want to spend time with. I recommend letting your characters talk to one another and seeing what happens. An outline is simply an outline. Don’t be afraid to deviate from it. Also, a romance story needs much more than romance. Don’t forget the humor, and the twists and turns in the story. Finally, until gays have equal civil rights, a little politicking never hurt.

Q: What would you like to say to your readers?

Joe: I know this story will touch your heart, because it’s everyone’s story. We’ve all had an infatuation, and this novel is a testament to that. Please email me via my web site and tell me about your experience with the book. I also love answering questions about the novella, so let them fly. My web site is: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

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infat-coverphotoBlurb: With his ten-year high school reunion approaching, Harold wonders whether Mario will be as muscular, sexy, and tantalizing as he remembers. As a teenager, it was love at first sight for Harold while tutoring football star Mario, until homophobia and bullying drove Mario deep into the closet. Now they’re both married men. Mario, a model, is miserable with his producer wife, while Harold, a teacher, is perfectly content with his businessman husband, Stuart. When the two meet again, will the old flame reignite, setting Harold’s comfortable life ablaze? How can Harold be happy with Stuart when he is still infatuated with his Adonis, his first love, Mario? Harold faces this seemingly impossible situation with inimitable wit, tenderness, and humor as he attempts to reconcile the past and the future.

Buy Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon US

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Excerpt: “Mario, we have a literature quiz tomorrow. You should stay and cram with me?” We can be Anne Frank and Peter Van Daan or Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn.

He turned around to face me. “It’s just a quiz. No sweat off my ass.”

What a way with words. “Mario, I can’t believe you don’t like books. I’d read all day if I could.” Next to you.

Putting his jacket and the football on my desk, he sat on the floor next to my bookcase. “Books don’t make sense to me, Harold.” He pulled out a book. “Like Romeo and Juliet. If I ever dated a girl whose old man hated my guts, I’d kick his ass. And another thing I don’t get about that book is if Romeo and Juliet were so head over heels in love, how come they don’t end up happily ever after?”

I rested my elbows on the desk. “I guess because sometimes things don’t work out the way we planned. That’s why if we love someone, we need to stay close to him, and commit ourselves to him, whether our family and friends like him or not. And we should never, ever let him go.”

“Will that be on the quiz, Harold?”

Yeah, the test of life. I nodded and hid my erection behind my desk. New tactic. “Mario, did you know that… originally… during Shakespeare’s time, all the roles on stage were played by male actors?”

“So?”

“So a male… a young male… played Juliet… in love with Romeo.”

“So how come Shakespeare didn’t call it, Romeo and Julio?”

With a book covering my lap, I sat next to Mario on the floor. “Let’s move on to Our Town.”

Mario grimaced like a kid facing a bowl of pea soup. “I hate Our Town. Who is that Stage Manager character anyway? If any guy came into my kitchen and started making comments and rearranging things, my mother would cut his balls off with a steak knife.”

I covered my lap with a second book. “It’s an amazing story, Mario. George and Emily were only… our age… but they were totally in love.

“I don’t get it.”

“That’s because you won’t give it a chance.” I looked into his dark, questioning eyes. Please give it a chance, Mario.

“Okay. Read it to me.” He leaned his back against my bed.

“Now?”

“No, when we’re forty years old in an old people’s home.”

I opened the book. Mario closed his eyes and rested his forearm against mine. Despite my cracking voice, I somehow read the section where George asks Emily if she will write to him if George goes away to agriculture college. After I finished, I asked, “Do you understand?”

Mario looked at me like a Rhodes Scholar. “What do you think I am, stupid?”

How did I not notice that cleft in your chin before this? “What does it mean?”

Mario cleared his throat like an orator. “George wants to keep Emily busy writing letters, so she won’t visit him at college and catch him rolling in the hay with the college babes.

His mouth was inches from mine. “No, Mario, George is testing Emily to see if she loves him.”

“Well, does she?”

“What do you think, Mario?”

“How the hell do I know what’s in some crazy broad’s head in some stupid book?”

I gave him a hint. “Emily marries George, doesn’t she?’

“My old lady married my old man, and no way they’re in love.”

“Trust me, Mario. George and Emily, like Romeo and Juliet, were star-crossed lovers. You should remember that for tomorrow’s literature quiz.” And make sure that we don’t share their fate. I reached over Mario’s muscular arms to take another book. “Let’s move on to A Separate Peace.”

“Another book I hate. Why do the two guys want to hurt each other?”

Here’s my chance. “Maybe because they don’t understand their feelings toward one another.” Our lips were so close they were nearly touching. “Maybe because of pressures from society, the two boys can’t express their… mutual admiration and… caring for one another, so their frustration turned into violence and tragedy.”

“What a bunch of bull. I’d never hurt someone I cared about.”

“You wouldn’t intentionally.”

He grabbed my arm. “I wouldn’t any way at all.”

Somehow, even at my tender young age, I knew that wasn’t true.

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Author BioAbout the Author: Joe Cosentino is the author of An Infatuation (Dreamspinner Press), Paper Doll, the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), Drama Queen, the first Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press-releasing this summer), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation and Neighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming novels are Porcelain Doll (the second Jana Lane mystery) and Drama Muscle (the second Nicky and Noah mystery).

Find Joe at his Website and on Goodreads

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GiveawaysThink back to your infatuation. When was it? Where were you? How did you feel? How did you react? How did it begin? How did it end? Write a paragraph about it and post it with your email address and preferred electronic reading format by Midnight Pacific time on Tuesday, February 17, 2015. The staff at The Novel Approach will select the one that tickles their libido the most and email the information to the author who will email the prize to the winner, on Wednesday, the 18th. Happy Infatuations!

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