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Friday, May 6, 2016

Cover Reveal Blitz: Love Can't Conquer by Kim Fielding


Love Can't Conquer 
(Love Can't series, Bk #1)
by Kim Fielding

Blurb: 

Bullied as a child in small-town Kansas, Jeremy Cox ultimately escaped to Portland, Oregon. Now in his forties, he’s an urban park ranger who does his best to rescue runaways and other street people. His ex-boyfriend, Donny—lost to drinking and drugs six years earlier—appears on his doorstep and inadvertently drags Jeremy into danger. As if dealing with Donny’s issues doesn’t cause enough turmoil, Jeremy meets a fascinating but enigmatic man who carries more than his fair share of problems.

Qayin Hill has almost nothing but skeletons in his closet and demons in his head. A former addict who struggles with anxiety and depression, Qay doesn’t know which of his secrets to reveal to Jeremy—or how to react when Jeremy wants to save him from himself.

Despite the pasts that continue to haunt them, Jeremy and Qay find passion, friendship, and a tentative hope for the future. Now they need to decide whether love is truly a powerful thing or if, despite the old adage, love can’t conquer all.



Release Date: 
June 3, 2016


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Excerpts

If Qay was going to be honest with himself—and he generally was—he was disappointed to arrive at P-Town and discover that Captain Caffeine wasn’t there. But the man’s absence was probably for the best, because Qay was supposed to be studying, not ogling. And with the help of a generous cup of coffee, he accomplished quite a lot. Knowledge was slowly seeping into his broken old brain, although fuck knew if he’d be able to pour it back onto the page come exam time.
When he heard the conversation taking place behind him, he lost all interest in Mill’s thoughts about liberty. What caught his attention first was the man’s voice. Pleasantly deep, it carried a hint of the twangy drawl Qay remembered from his childhood. Most of his youthful memories were painful, but sometimes he missed the accent—a unique mix of the Midwest and West with a dash of the South.
As he paid attention to the content of what the man was saying, Qay realized the guy was talking about a visit from his fucked-up ex. That was interesting for two reasons. The speaker was obviously gay, and he’d apparently done the ex a solid, even though—judging by Rhoda’s interjections—the ex was a jerk. That made the man sitting behind Qay sound like a true white hat, and it was slightly gratifying to know that Qay wasn’t the only person with a shitload of issues. At least nobody was trying to slice and dice him.
At this point in the conversation, Qay was pretty certain who was talking to Rhoda. Who else but Captain Caffeine, right? But Qay couldn’t look around to confirm the identity without making his eavesdropping obvious. Then Rhoda called the man by name, and Qay’s heart stuttered.
Jeremy Cox?
A detailed memory hit Qay: a kid a couple of years younger than him, tow-haired and slightly pudgy. Quiet. The kid kept his head down and his mouth shut, but every time a teacher called on him, his intelligence was clear—he was light-years smarter than Troy Baker and his gang of morons, who used to torment the boy for sport. That boy’s name had been Jeremy Cox. He’d sat in the back row next to Qay, a little island of exiles among the other students, and he used to sneak shy glances. When Qay looked back at him, maybe spared him a rare smile, Jeremy would blush red as a fireplug.
Surely that runt of a boy from Kansas hadn’t grown up to become Captain Caffeine, rescuer of past boyfriends and coffeehouse fixture in Portland, Oregon. Yet even back then, his face had the promise of real beauty, once he lost the baby fat and gained some experience. Qay especially remembered gray eyes, each pale iris encircled by a darker rim.
He couldn’t help it—he turned around to look.
Just then, Rhoda walked away and left a clear line of sight between Qay and Captain Caf—Jeremy Cox, who stared at him with brows drawn together in a frown. Qay braced himself for an attack that didn’t come.
“Do we know each other?” Cox asked. He tilted his head slightly. “Sorry, I kind of suck at names. But you look familiar.”
Qay almost told him. But the person Cox thought he knew was long dead, drowned in the Smoky Hill River, and Qay had no intention of resurrecting him. Especially not for Jeremy Cox, who’d grown up into a strong, gorgeous man who worried about douche bag exes and probably spent his spare time rescuing cats and helping little old ladies cross the street.

“I don’t think so,” Qay lied.



The café was open late on Saturdays, and from the looks of things through the big front windows, it was a hot spot tonight. Ptolemy had help from two other baristas, but still Rhoda said, “I think I’ll see if they could use a hand. Thanks for dinner, Jer. Think about what I said. And Qay, I’m really glad you went with us. I hope you come around often.” She hugged Jeremy and patted Qay’s shoulder before heading inside.

Qay and Jeremy remained outside, Qay gripping the strap of his backpack and shuffling a foot on the sidewalk. “Thanks for inviting me,” he said quietly.

“I’m glad I did. But I’m sorry you got subjected to the Pathetic Jeremy Cox Show.”

A smile curled the corner of Qay’s mouth. “I’m just relieved to learn you’re mortal.”

Standing there, Jeremy felt not just mortal but big and dumb and clumsy. He scratched his head. “Um, do you think…. After what Rhoda said, you probably think I’m going to chain you up in my closet or something. I promise, I am not as needy as she made me sound. But I’d like to get to know you better. Another dinner, maybe? Without Rhoda and her attempts to fix my head.”

Qay didn’t immediately refuse or run screaming down the street. Instead, he looked conflicted. Then he squinted at Jeremy. “You want to go on a date with a junkie after what you went through with Donny?”

“I want to go on a date with you.” It was an honest answer. If Qay was telling the truth, he hadn’t used for years. In any case, there was clearly a lot more to him than a history of addiction. Something about the guy made Jeremy’s heart beat a little faster, made him want to find a way to peel away the grief and wariness so evident on Qay’s face and reveal the man inside.

“A date.” Qay gave a small laugh. “I’m not sure I’ve ever been on one. I sort of skipped that developmental phase.” He briefly chewed on a hangnail. “The thing is, I’m not just a junkie. I’m also an ex-con. Nothing earth-shattering. Just got caught holding a couple of times over the years. And that’s not the worst of it. I’m crazy too. Spent time in more than one mental hospital. I’m just bad news, Jeremy Cox. You ought to walk away. Fast.”

Taking a gamble, Jeremy instead took a step closer to Qay, then another. “Don’t want to.” He pushed the hair away from Qay’s face, leaned in, and brushed their lips together. Not a passionate kiss by any means. It was more of a nibble, a little taste to see if they suited each other. Which maybe they did, because Qay rested a hand on Jeremy’s shoulder and squeezed.

Then the kiss was over. Qay dropped his hand, Jeremy took a step back, and they looked at each other solemnly. “Fine,” Qay said. “A date. But I pay, all right?”

“Deal,” Jeremy said. He wanted to do a celebratory lap around the block but stood his ground. “When? I’m free every evening.”

“Saturday. That’ll give you a week to change your mind. We can meet here at seven, all right? And if you want to back out, that’s cool. I’ll understand.”

“I won’t want to.”

Qay didn’t look convinced, but he nodded slightly. “Saturday at seven, then.”

“Good luck on the test.”

That made Qay shoot him a quick, surprised grin. “Thanks, man. I’ll need it.” He tapped his head. “It’s all up here, but getting it back out again onto paper, that’s a struggle.” He strolled away in the direction opposite Jeremy’s loft, his lanky frame throwing shadows in the pools of light from lamps and shops.

Rhoda was watching from inside the café, a mug in one hand. She waved at Jeremy with the other, and he waved back. Thought about going inside but decided not to. A walk, he concluded. That was what he needed.

He’d strolled all the way to the curve near Mt. Tabor when his phone rang. He fished it from his pocket hesitantly, knowing late-night calls were never good news.

“Chief Cox?” said the gruff voice on the other end. “Captain Frankl here.”

Jeremy knew Frankl from his time at the bureau, and they’d interacted numerous times since Jeremy joined the park department. They were hardly best buddies, but they got along. “What’s up, Captain?”

“I need to see you. Got a body for you to ID.” 




Book Trailer





About The Author

Kim Fielding is the bestselling, award-winning author of numerous m/m romance novels, novellas, and short stories. Like Kim herself, her work is eclectic, spanning genres such as contemporary, fantasy, paranormal, and historical. Her stories are set in alternate worlds, in 15th century Bosnia, in modern-day Oregon. Her heroes are hipster architect werewolves, housekeepers, maimed giants, and conflicted graduate students. They’re usually flawed, they often encounter terrible obstacles, but they always find love.


After having migrated back and forth across the western two-thirds of the United States, Kim calls the boring part of California home. She lives there with her husband, her two daughters, and her day job as a university professor, but escapes as often as possible via car, train, plane, or boat. This may explain why her characters often seem to be in transit as well. She dreams of traveling and writing full-time.



You can follow Kim at 

         





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