Fan Favorite Philip Potter
Thanks, M.A., for having me back on your blog to talk about After Christmas Eve, my new release from MLR Press. You’ve spruced an already nice place up quite a bit since my last visit. I don’t know how you find the time for everything you do!
To celebrate the 10/11 release of my second novel, I’m giving away 10 copies (ebooks) through an 11-stop blog hop. To enter, comment before midnight, October 25, 2013 on any of my posts on the eleven participating blogs. Be sure to include an email address.
I had no idea when I wrote Until Thanksgiving that a prequel would follow. The idea of writing a novel was intimidating enough—never mind a series. But something about Philip Potter, a supporting character, grabbed me and wouldn't let go. I wanted to know more about him. Readers loved him too, and shared my interest in his past.
After Christmas Eve is Philip Potter's story. Fans of Thad Parker's uncle will find out what sparked his interest in helping gay teens, abandoned by intolerant parents. They'll also learn Philip's deepest, most well kept secret—unknown even to his precious nephew.
Discovering Philip required a trip to the sixties—a difficult decade in U.S. history for gays and lesbians. Homosexuality was not just a sin, but also a mental illness, against the law, and universally scorned. Major cities across the U.S. shut down gay-owned businesses, raided gay gathering places, and destroyed the lives of hundreds of men through entrapment, harassment, extortion, and/or brutal, often fatal assaults.
Considering I made him up, you’d expect me to know everything about Philip Potter. Well, I don’t. Philip is one cagey dude. The man’s got more secrets than the National Security Agency and tells me stuff only on a need-to-know basis.
He’s pushing 80 now. Anyone who has been out as long as Philip would be just as careful. Old habits die hard. The sixties were a horrible time to be gay in America.
In a conversation with his nephew in the first book, Philip mentions James, a lover who’d killed himself thirty years earlier. You could have knocked me over with a feather. I had no idea! Like everyone else, I had to know more. After Christmas Eve is Philip’s story—at least as much as he’s told me—about the weeks following James’s death in 1966.
Here’s the blurb:
As Philip Potter wraps up his last minute shopping on Christmas Eve, 1966, James Walker, his lover of six years, takes his life. Unaware of what waits for him at home, Philip drops off gifts to the homeless shelter, an act of generosity that later makes him a suspect in the murder of a male prostitute.
Two men drive yellow Continentals. One is a killer, with the blood of at least six hustlers on his hands. Both men have secrets. And as Philip is about to discover, James had kept secrets, too. But James wasn’t trying to frame him for murder…
*This is the sixth of eleven stops on the After Christmas Eve Blog Hop. Excerpts appear in serial form along the hop, beginning with my post at http://www.shiraanthony.com/?p=3217.
Excerpt #6 of 11
As he tried to focus on keeping his footing on the icy sidewalk, James sorted through the shattered fragments of his dreams for a shard to hold onto. In one afternoon, his father had decimated his hopes and aspirations, leaving nothing but despair and regret.
He wondered if his mother knew about the meeting. She’d been there that awful day when his father had kicked him out, turning her back and leaving the room when he’d pleaded with her to intervene. Roland treated her no better than he had James, but it didn’t excuse her absence or her failure to protect him from the man she’d married in haste.
No, even if she wasn’t in the room when his father had told him to leave, she was every bit as much to blame. His mother and father had thrown him out, together. Leaving him to fend for himself had been a joint decision. They had abandoned him, like an infant in a basket. Only instead of a hospital or church, they’d dropped him off at the bus station with ten dollars in his pocket.
That had been the worst day of his life—until today. Six years ago there had been a silver lining. Escaping the father who had always hated him had spared him the constant criticism and incessant disapproval that permeated every horrid, painful minute spent in his company. Although the odds were against him, asking his father for help was a gamble he had to take—an all or nothing bet that he’d lost.
And now he had nothing.
James should have known better than to give his father yet another chance to hurt him. What had possessed James to think he might have changed? When it came to hurting his wife and son, Roland Walker hadn’t missed an opportunity in his life. Today had been no different. He’d taken the opportunity to spoil James’s dreams and run with it.
Meeting Philip had restored James’s faith in mankind and given him reason to believe in himself. Philip offered a chance to leave behind the dangerous, high-risk lifestyle the other boys led on the streets. But thirty minutes with the father who despised him with a white-hot intensity left James with nothing to believe in but lies and shattered truths.
Continued 10/21on Chris T. Kat’s blog http://christikat.blogspot.com
Buy link: MLR Press http://www.mlrbooks.com/ShowBook.php?book=MRAFTERX
Web site: http://rupured.com