Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Christmas in His Heart by Lee Brazil & Havan Fellows: Guest Post #Holiday #NewRelease #Giveaway @leebrazil @HavanFellows

Cover Artist: Laura Harner
Christmas In His Heart
by Lee Brazil & Havan Fellows

Genre: Contemporary, M/M, Romance, Holiday
Christmastime brings joy to hearts everywhere. Between snow angels, festive clothing, holiday decorations, and of course, all the beautiful lights, it’s hard not to partake in the season.

Unless you no longer have Christmas in your heart.

Dermot Alasdair has never shared the horrific memories that keep him from celebrating the happiest time of the year, nor does he ever plan to. He’s fine being alone and shut off from everyone; he has his restaurant and that’s all he needs. He believes that, too…until the craft store next door from his eatery hires a perpetually smiling annoyance. Really, it isn’t normal for someone to be that happy all the time.

Xander Leahman didn’t know what he was getting into when he accepted an invitation to visit his best friend and help her interview people for the newly created position of manager at Craft Time. When a surly man bumps into him and then walks away with an enticing sway to his hips, Xander decides the position—and Dermot—are perfect for him. Now all he can think of is finding ways to get Dermot out of his clothes. Well that, and how to open this grinch’s heart to the Christmas season and, hopefully, love.

Welcome, welcome Lee Brazil and Havan Fellows! I'm excited to have you here today. In keeping with the holiday theme, can you tell readers about a memory or tradition that represents the spirit of Christmas to you?

Lee: Hi! Thanks for having me over today. I’m Lee Brazil, author of M./m romance with Story Orgy, Pulp Friction and Breathless Press. This bouncy, overly-caffeinated ball of energy is Havan Fellows, my co-author and friend. 
Havan: Slightly less bouncy than normal... I’m only on my third cup.

Lee: Wow, these are always such difficult concepts! Kind of hard to narrow it down, but I think for the magic and spirit of christmas, you have to go back to childhood, don’t you?

Maybe not. Okay, I got it. This is not a childhood memory, and I know Havan already knows this story- but this is about as Christmas magic as life can get. See, once upon a time, close to twenty years ago, before I found a job as a teacher, I worked at a bookstore in a mall. It was a chain of stores, and one of the things we did a lot of was calling all around other stores looking for copies of books that customers requested. In the process of all this calling, I had developed a bit of a crush on an employee at another store. His voice on the phone was just… Yeah, that.

Well, when the holidays rolled around, the store managers got together and arranged a joint Christmas party.

MY SO of the last eighteen years and I met face to face for the first time at that party.

Oh, I’m making it sound easy of course. There were issues. There was a directional miscommunication (he drove all the way to another state before he realized he was lost). Then there was the mistletoe, (I was wearing it) which created all kinds of confusion, and yes… there must have been some magic in the air that night.

And that’s my favorite Christmas memory. How about you Havan? 
Havan: I never get tired of that story. 
Lee: *eyes Havan* Where’s yours? I showed mine… Come on. *nods* Take it off… show it to the world.

Havan: Well you don’t have to ask me twice to be an exhibitionist. :) *starts unbuttoning shirt*

Just kidding... kinda... lol

My parents had a tradition with us kids. On Christmas Eve, after we got to open our one token gift (that gradually grew to much more than one over the years lol) we would line up and hang our stockings on the wall. We didn’t have a fireplace - not much need for those in central Florida - but the bottom half of our family room walls were made of wood and my father installed eye hooks that stayed up year round just waiting for December the twenty-fourth to be utilized.

So we would line up and one by one we’d hang our stockings with our names on them in the same order each year, and by the time we woke up the next morning - usually only about four or five hours later - those empty slim stockings would be filled with little knick knacks, some candy, and one special gift. Now us kids loved all our presents of course... but it was the gift in the stocking that we always couldn’t wait to get our hands on...Santa always found a way to find the coolest, neatest gift that fit in that slender sock.

I don’t think it was the actual stocking that makes me smile...lots of people hang stockings for Santa - no, I think it was the ritual we went through hanging them. How we would grab them and stand in line to put them on the hook, from oldest to youngest. The moment it was our turn we’d step up, slip the sock on, give mom and dad a kiss goodnight and run off to bed. It was good. It was family. :)

Okay... I’m an inch away from turning this whole blog post to mush... and Lee knows how dangerous that can be! lmao

Lee: Aw! What an awesome story! And this is the perfect time for mush, isn’t it? Happy holidays to everyone, and thank you for having us over. 
Havan: *waves* Thanks... and I hope you all have great holidays.

“Hey! Good morning!”

The cheerful greeting broke through his concentration, and Dermot looked up to see the new manager of the Craft Time craft store sweeping the sidewalk in front of the shop. “Hey,” he muttered sourly. Xander Leahman made his head ache. Just one glance and he wanted to snap at the man to comb his hair, put on a heavier jacket, and for Christ sakes why wasn’t he wearing gloves outside in this weather?

Dermot wasn’t going to stop. He had no plans stop and talk to the smiling man. Xander bubbled more than a bottle of shaken soda water. Dermot didn’t have time for his chatter, and he didn’t have time for the strange, compelling not-quite-nausea he seemed prone to in Xander’s company.

Maybe he was allergic to the man’s cologne, or deodorant, or shampoo. Dermot leaned forward and sniffed surreptitiously, but he couldn't smell anything other than cinnamon and vanilla. An overwhelming urge to bake overcame him, and he jerked himself upright.

He was an executive chef, not a pastry chef. He didn’t bake, and especially not something as…plebeian as oatmeal raisin cookies, which was what Xander smelled like.

“Excuse me.” He deliberately stepped around Xander, who put out a hand and caught his arm.

“I saw you coming down the street.” Xander set the broom aside and picked up a steaming mug from the windowsill. “It’s not as good as Prudence’s coffee, but I made it fresh this morning.”

Blinking in astonishment, Dermot stared from the mug to the hand on his arm. He could really… “Thanks.” He accepted the mug and inhaled the rich aroma of good coffee, scented with cinnamon and…yeah, vanilla. And he’d thought it was Xander who smelled so good? He didn't know whether to be relieved or embarrassed. “I needed this. That walk feels longer every day that the temperature drops.” The first sip exploded on his tongue with soothing heat and delicious flavor and he bit back a moan of appreciation.
Lee Brazil
Somewhere in a small town in up-state New York are a librarian and a second grade teacher to whom I owe my life. That might be a touch dramatic, but it's nevertheless one hundred percent true.

Because they taught me the joy of reading, of escaping into worlds crafted of words.

Have you ever been nine years old and sure of nothing so much as that you don't belong? Looked at the world from behind glasses, and wondered why you don't fit?

Someone hands you a book, and then you turn the page and see… There you are, running from Injun Joe in a dark graveyard; there you are fencing with Athos; there you are…beneath the deep blue sea- marveling at exotic creatures with Captain Nemo.

I found myself between the pages of books, and that is why I write now. It's why I taught English and literature for so many years, and it's why my house contains more pounds of books than furniture.

If I'd had my way, I'd have been a fencer…or a starship captain, or a lawyer, or a detective solving crimes. But instead, I am a writer, and I've come to realize that's the best thing in the world to be, because as a writer, I can be all those things and more.

If I hadn't learned to value the stories between the pages, who knows what would have happened? Certainly not college…teaching…or writing.

Havan Fellows
I annoy, love, respect, scare, seduce, hurt, anger, infatuate, frustrate, flatter, envy, amuse and tolerate everyone. I just do it better in writing thanks to a little thing called…edits.

Okay no, seriously…I'm a simpleminded person who enjoys the escape from real life through a book. I write with the group Story Orgy and hope to continue doing so for a long time. I also am privileged to be with the Pulp Friction writers, creating intermingling books in a world all our own. And just like every other red-blooded human—I love hearing from people. So feel free to drop me a line—whether it's a comment on my blog, an email, a tweet, or you track me down on FaceBook or Google +…it's easy to catch someone who wants to be caught.

Tour Dates/Tour Stops:
Parker Williams
MM Good Book Reviews
EE Montgomery
Multitasking Mommas
Carly’s Book Reviews
LeAnn’s Book Reviews
Amanda C. Stone
Queer Town Abbey
BFD Book Blog
Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words
Cathy Brockman Romances
Bayou Book Junkie
My Fiction Nook
Molly Lolly - Hearts on Fire
Inked Rainbow Reads
Fallen Angel Reviews
Tara Lain
Love Bytes - Iyana Jenna
MM Good Book Reviews


  1. Thanks so much for having us on your blog today!

  2. I absolutely freaking love your blog! I love the fonts and the happiness of it. :) Oh, and yes, thanks for having us today. *waves*

    1. You're welcome! I have fun with my little blog. =)

  3. Thanks for the post. I think decaff is the way to go