Friday, November 21, 2014

Hook, Line, & Sinker by Piper Vaughn: Guest Post, Review & Giveaway!

Hook, Line, & Sinker
(Hard Hats, Book 2)
by Piper Vaughn

Genres: M/M, Contemporary, Erotic, Romance
When they were teens, Castor McCormick was the bane of Blake Kowalski’s existence. Their mutual animosity led to summers filled with rivalry. Now, nearly two decades later, Cas is moving back into the neighborhood to live in his grandmother’s old house. Blake tells himself he isn’t interested in seeing how snarky little Cas grew up, but when his mother dupes him into visiting his former nemesis, he finds out “pretty” can evolve into “sexy as hell” on the right man. 

Cas didn’t think he wanted to see Blake again. No one has ever pushed his buttons like the arrogant boy he remembers from their youth. Turns out, the adult version of Blake still gets him hot under the collar—and everywhere else. With Blake on leave from work to nurse an injured leg and Cas taking time to move and unpack, they form a tentative friendship that turns into a sexual affair neither man can deny. But when Cas’s job sends him out of state to deal with a difficult client, their new relationship will be tested, and if they fail, Blake’s broken leg might not be the only thing to end up scarred.
The Character Process

Hi! Thanks for joining me on the fourth stop of the Hook, Line, & Sinker blog tour, and thanks to Carly for having me on the blog today. :D

I’ve been asked before how I develop characters. Do they talk to me? How do I create them? And, specifically to Hook, Line, & Sinker, how did Blake and Cas push their way to the forefront and demand their story before any of my others?

When planning stories, for me it’s often a mix as to what comes first—character or plot. For Hook, Line, & Sinker, I already had the character. Blake was introduced very briefly in my release back in April, Wood, Screws, & Nails. He was a secondary character who didn’t get very much page time, but if you’ll pardon the pun, he really dug his hooks into me and wouldn’t let me go. I thought about his situation, having a broken leg and being laid up on his mother’s couch all summer. Then I started thinking about what would happen from there, and it came to me—what if a rival from Blake’s childhood came back into the neighborhood and the tension between them was just as explosive now as it had been back then? And, thus, Cas entered the picture, and the idea for the story developed around him and Blake.

For the Wanting books, the plot came first. I took on a prompt from the Goodreads M/M Romance Group’s “Hot Summer Days” event, and there wasn’t much to it beyond a picture and a request for friends to lovers. It got me to thinking—what if a younger guy had always been in love with his older brother’s best friend, and he comes up with a scheme to get the guy to teach him about sex before he starts college? Laurie and Jonah were born from that idea.

Sometimes the characters “talk” to me right from the beginning. Blake and Cas were easy, as were Jonah and Laurie. Sometimes they’re more difficult and I have to come up with bios and backstories before they’ll start “speaking.” Typically, though, I’ll come up with bios for everyone, no matter how talkative they are (or aren’t). I also like to find “picspiration,” though it has happened that I only had the character in my head at the beginning and I stumbled across a picture and thought “oh, my God, that’s him!” only after the fact.

As I said in an earlier post on the tour, I’m very visual. I love to create Pinterest boards for each new story, and in addition to pics of places or items important to the story, these almost always include pictures of my character inspiration. Sometimes the character will look almost exactly like whoever I modeled them after. Sometimes it’s only bits and pieces. It’s usually a little different from one story to the next. They’re under my Pinterest profile (link at the bottom of the post) if you ever want to look around, but for readers who prefer to keep their own mental images of the characters, it’s probably best to avoid those boards. ;)

So, while we’re on the subject of characters, who are some of your favorites? The ones who stick with you? A couple of my all-time favorite characters are actually from outside of the m/m genre—Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice and Christian, the Duke of Jervaulx from Laura Kinsale’s Flowers from the Storm. Within the genre, two of my faves are Victor Bayne from Jordan Castillo Price’s PsyCop books, and Roan from Andrea Speed’s Infected series.

I’m hoping readers will enjoy my Cas and Blake. Check out their story in Hook, Line, & Sinker, which released from Dreamspinner Press on November 19th. I had a lot of fun writing them. They were a snarky, sexy pair and their chemistry made for some really hot scenes. I look forward to hearing what people think about them!

If you want a chance to win Hook, Line, & Sinker for free, be sure to check out my Rafflecopter giveaway! But if you want to buy it now, you can do so directly from Dreamspinner, Amazon, ARe, and other e-tailers.

Thanks for reading! Catch you at the next stop!
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Castor McCormick made Blake Kowalski’s summers a nightmare, but they say time heals all wounds. In Piper Vaughn's world, time leads to smokin' hot sexual chemistry.

I loved the lighthearted introduction Piper gives readers to the main characters and their initial interactions had me laughing so hard I almost cried.

As the story progresses, what starts out as a whole lot of lust between Cas and Blake develops the potential for love and, like all relationships, that transition is where the heart of the story lies.

Caring and commitment bring them closer but insecurities from their past, personality differences, and expectations arise that challenge the foundation of their romance. While there continue to be moments of lightheartedness, Piper really delves deeply into what makes each character tick, and reveals the whole spectrum of their emotions.

I loved that HOOK, LINE, & SINKER is a perfect balance of reality and romance. The main characters are written as flawed human beings, but at the same time their moments of brilliance and combined chemistry reach out to readers and grab their attention. A well written and fast paced stand alone story, I would highly recommend HOOK, LINE, & SINKER to readers looking for a book that offers a unique spin on the much loved "frenemy" plot line.
View all my reviews
Piper Vaughn wrote her first love story at eleven and never looked back. Since then, she’s known that writing in some form was exactly what she wanted to do. A reader at the core, Piper loves nothing more than getting lost in a great book—fantasy, young adult, romance, she loves them all (and has a two thousand book library to prove it!). She grew up in Chicago, in an ethnically diverse neighborhood, and loves to put faces and characters of every ethnicity in her stories, so her fictional worlds are as colorful as the real one. Above all, she believes that everyone needs a little true love in their life…even if it’s only in a book.


  1. cant wait to read the concept

  2. Love, love, love the book! Thanks for the gift of great reads, keep 'em coming.