Monday, March 9, 2015

Inclination by Mia Kerick - Book Tour with Author post and Giveaway

Book Name: Inclination
Release Date: February 25, 2015
Author Name: Mia Kerick
Publisher: Cool Dudes Publishing
Cover Artist: Louis C. Harris


Sixteen-year-old Anthony Duck-Young Del Vecchio is a nice Catholic boy with a very big problem. It’s not the challenge of fitting in as the lone adopted South Korean in a close-knit family of Italian-Americans.  Nor is it being the one introverted son in a family jam-packed with gregarious daughters. Anthony’s problem is far more serious—he is the only gay kid in Our Way, his church’s youth group. As a high school junior, Anthony has finally come to accept his sexual orientation, but he struggles to determine if a gay man can live as a faithful Christian. And as he faces his dilemma, there are complications. After confiding his gayness to his intolerant adult youth group leader, he’s asked to find a new organization with which to worship. He’s beaten up in the church parking lot by a fanatical teen. His former best pal bullies him in the locker room. His Catholic friends even stage an intervention to lead him back to the “right path.” Meanwhile, Anthony develops romantic feelings for David Gandy, an emo, out and proud junior at his high school, who seems to have all the answers about how someone can be gay and Christian, too.

Will Anthony be able to balance his family, friends and new feelings for David with his changing beliefs about his faith so he can live a satisfying life and not risk his soul in the process?

Categories: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, Romance, Young Adult, Christian, Spiritual

I’ll pass on the Kool-Aid, thank you

It sounds like a joke, but it’s all true. Every student who volunteers his or her time on a weekly basis at an animal shelter, a hospital, or a home for the elderly receives a free lunch on the last Monday of the month, putting to rest the veracity (got that word on the last SAT practice test I took at my desk in my bedroom the other day) of the old idiom, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.”  And as I spend every Sunday afternoon patting and playing with cats at the Centerton Humane Society, I qualify. If nothing else, it gives Mom a day off from making me lunch.

“It was so disgusting.”

I drop down into my usual seat in the cafeteria beside Laz, my tray with the bowl of free macaroni and cheese, a slice of bread, and milk, sliding onto the lunch table in front of me. “The mac and cheese?” I ask. “Last time I had it the stuff wasn’t too bad.” It’s not one of Mom’s gourmet lunches, but it gets the job done.

“No, Anthony.” Emma Gillis rolls her eyes and swallows her bite of free mac and cheese she earned by reading classics to the elderly on Saturday mornings at the New Horizons Elderly Center. She gulps in a breath and informs me with her usual haughtiness, “I was telling everybody about these two old men I read to last Saturday who think they are some kind of couple. They actually kissed each other.” She fake-gags.

“I threw up a little in my mouth when I saw that!”

For my own personal reasons, I gasp, while everybody else snickers.

“Those old dudes must be losing it, as in, they could have Alzheimer’s or something, and they forgot that dudes belong with ladies, not other dudes.” I glance over at Lazarus, who abruptly stops babbling to suck down the first of three cartons of chocolate milk. “But seriously, that’s messed up.” Laz wrinkles his nose in distaste and runs his hands through his shaggy dark hair, before moving on to carton number two.

I’m basically frozen, my hand still hovering over the slice of wheat bread on the corner of my tray, my mouth hanging open. I might even be drooling.

“It’s not their fault, Emma.” Elizabeth-the-devout always takes the case of the underdog. It’s how she’s wired. “They’re just sick in their minds.” She sends Emma a you-ought-to-be-ashamed-of yourself sort of frown. “We, as Catholics, are called to compassion.”

Everyday single day at lunch since freshman year, I’ve sat with the kids from the Our Way youth group. In fact, the other kids in my grade have long referred to our lunch table as “Our Way to Survive Cafeteria Food”, which somewhere along the line got shortened to the “OWSCF Table”, which eventually morphed into “awe-scoff”. I have always felt safe and secure sitting at the awe-scoff table. These are the kids I’ve prayed with three times a week at Our Way, and the ones who I was confirmed with in ninth grade. I’ve collected toys for the poor with these kids—in fact, for three years running we’ve made sure that no child in Wedgewood missed out on having a small stack of Christmas gifts, and that brings about some major bonding. We’ve shared weekends camping in the Maine woods, singing and holding hands and sometimes crying when the Spirit moved us.

This is my safe spot at school, like my tiny room is my alone spot at home.

“If you ask me, all fags deserve to die for going against Christ and everything that’s natural. They should be forced to drink poison Kool-Aid, like those cultists had to do down in Jonestown…’member that?” Is that Rinaldo Vera who just suggested mass murder as the “final solution” to the gay problem?

Sweet, passive Rinaldo—the gentle giant. Um, not so much.

“I saw a TV movie called the Jonestown Massacre.”

“I caught that too…those people were warped.”

The conversation drifts away from the vileness of homosexuality, toward the disturbing personal stories of the few survivors of the Jim Jones Cult Kool-Aid Massacre. But I’ve heard more than enough, in terms of stuff that pertains to me.

Feeling as if I’m going to lose what little lunch I ate, I jump up off my chair and race toward the boys’ room in the hall near the cafeteria.

Maybe there really is no such thing as a free lunch.

Pages or Words: 70,000 words

Author Bio:

Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—all named after saints—and five nonpedigreed cats—all named after the next best thing to saints, Boston Red Sox players. Her husband of twenty-two years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about that, as it is a sensitive subject.

Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled young people and their relationships, and she believes that physical intimacy has a place in a love story, but not until it is firmly established as a love story. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with romantic tales of tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to Dreamspinner Press, Harmony Ink Press, Cool Dudes, and CreateSpace for providing her with alternate places to stash her stories.

Mia is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights, especially marital equality. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.

Where to find the author:

Twitter: @MiaKerick

Hi, it’s Mia Kerick, here on my Inclination blog tour to fill you in on what I like to do with my free time. Yes, these are my hobbies.

No, not what you see above…
This may or may not surprise you; although it is also my work, my hobby is writing and researching for my writing. My mind is incredibly inquisitive and I need to constantly feed it. Inclination gave me a great deal of food for thought—I read books about LGBT Christianity, researched the Bible, sorted through online networks and websites, and watched informational videos in my effort to be prepared to write this story. I thrive on doing research like some people thrive on going shopping or skateboarding. I am not put off by a research challenge, but am rather intrigued by it. I guess this love of research ties back to my days as a History major at Boston College where I couldn’t wait get to the Tip O’Neill Library to work on my research papers. Most of the time.

I don’t know if you’d call it a hobby, but I thoroughly enjoy music. Each summer, my husband and I go to at least four or five outdoor concerts at Meadowbrook Pavilion, which is in our hometown (lucky us.) We have seen a wide variety of bands—many of which I would not have gone to see if they hadn’t come to my town. This list includes Keith Urban, James Taylor, Zac Brown, Styx, Darius Rucker, Def Leppard, Phil Phillips, John Mayer, and many, many more. In my research for Inclination, I fortunately had a reason to listen to plenty of Christian pop music, which allowed me to combine my love of research with my love of music.

I like to watch my kids play sports and do their other activities. I enjoy watching my daughter dance, even if it is just in rehearsal. I like to visit them at their colleges and take them shopping and totally spoil them. And since this is a guest post for the blog tour of my new release Inclination, I will mention that Anthony, the main character, lives in a family like ours, with many sisters and a single brother. And I, like Anthony’s mother, spent almost all of my time when the kids were young driving them to sports and art and music lessons and dance class, and watching as they learned. Not sure if this qualifies as a hobby. But it was fun.

I like to travel, and my husband and I plan to do a lot of it once our son, who is our youngest child, has graduated from high school. Until then, our lives center around the kids and we hate to leave them without one of us at home. So travel is a future hobby.

Oh, dear, I sound kind of boring.
Well, I like to watch crime shows. That counts as a hobby, right? Right?

Tour Dates/Tour Stops:














 Rafflecopter Prize: One of three copies from Mia’s extensive backlist

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