The Bar Next Door, Book 1
Could he love me? Malachi has wanted to know the answer since his best friend, Daniel, confessed to being gay. He has never forgotten that long-ago conversation, or the secret hope that another confession would follow: that Daniel is in love with him.
Daniel is—and always has been—in love with Malachi. But how is he supposed to share that information without risking the only friendship that has ever mattered to him? He couldn’t handle it if he were kicked out of Malachi’s life. The best Daniel could do was move home to Texas, buy a little rundown ranch to work outside Austin, and visit the watering hole where Malachi tends bar.
Malachi knows that something heavy is riding his friend and he’s tired of watching Daniel’s downward spiral of too much beer and too many meaningless flings. Enough is enough.
Except, when he gets Daniel home and some strong coffee down his gullet, the truth comes pouring out. A truth that nearly knocks Malachi out of his boots.
Courage like that doesn’t come easy…and Malachi can only pray his answer is enough to turn lifelong friends into forever lovers.
This little tale tries to contain a gay bar, a lot of beer, a hot cowboy with a pitchfork, another one with a serious addiction to boots and coffee, and a secret yearning between the two for hot blooded, can’t wait to get naked, just leave your boots on sex. Oh, and there are doughnuts…
I write angsty male/male romance. If you want to, you can run now…
I write the books I want to read. I don’t like easy books. Not in any genre. I don’t care about length or outside plot as much as I care about the interaction of the characters. The outside world shapes who we are and how we think, though. Our upbringing shapes how we perceive things, how we interpret things, and shaking that off is harder than we might like it to be. Prejudice still abounds all over and you see it daily in the news from different parts of the world and however evolved we might want to believe we are, there are many still stuck in times and ages past.
It’s not easy to change a thought process when all you’ve ever known is one way. It’s not easy to accept a different way of living, being, loving, when all you’ve ever known is this way or that way. Not all of us are blessed with open minds and open hearts and when I write male/male romance, that’s what I’m going for, where I’m coming from. I know people, friends, family who would not ever be able to accept another friend or family member who admitted to being gay. It’s unthinkable to them. It’s wrong. It’s worthy of being shunned, cast out, turned away from. That’s the place I write from when I write male/male romance.
I have been reading male/male romance for several years. I find it exciting, erotic, sexy, and some of it I find painful and emotional and poignant and heartbreaking. I love the heavy heart books, the very deeply sexual and very difficult emotional romances when it comes to male/male. I love the angst, the fight for what they want versus what others say is right. I love the grip of now or never, of the fear of never being accepted, of the fear of losing everything to admit love for another man. And that is what I try to convey, to write when I write male/male romance.
My mother had a hairdresser in Alabama. He was wonderful. Exuberant. Opinionated. Gorgeous. Deeply religious. And gay. When we’ d be in his shop, there was always some new lover in his life, some new club he was going to, some old friend he’d lost, some new person in his church trying to ‘change him from being gay’. He was Italian. Had a huge family, some of whom accepted him and some of whom didn’t. There was always sadness when he’d talk about his love of his God and his desire to find the love of a man. He always used to tell my mom that if he could have chosen whether to be gay or not, he’d have chosen not, but gay is who he was, and gay is who he would always be.
I think about that man a lot and wonder if he ever found what he was seeking, if he ever found the peace between the two things he desired most. It was always a struggle for him. It is not a struggle for everyone, I know, but when I write male/male romance, or when I’m looking for a male/male romance to read, I’m looking for the struggle and the will and desire to overcome the fears, the rejections, the hurt, the pain, and the need to sink into full immersion love. I’m looking for the acceptance of oneself and the strength to stand up proudly for what that one wants and needs, no matter the cost.
Thanks to Nix for inviting me to participate in the GLBT event here at Scorching Reviews. I will be giving away a $10 Amazon.com gift card as well as one of my male/male romance titles to one person who leaves a comment on my post. If you’d like to find out more about me and the books I write, you can visit my website, lissamatthews.com. You can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest. a Rafflecopter giveaway