Sunday, June 17, 2018

Sunday's Short Stack: Introducing Mr. Winterbourne by Joanna Chambers


Summary:
Lysander Winterbourne appears to lead a charmed life. Handsome, amiable, and a renowned sportsman, he is the darling of London society. As far as Adam Freeman is concerned though, Lysander is just another spoiled aristocrat.

A wealthy mill owner, Adam has no time for the frivolous world of the ton, but when his younger brother becomes engaged to Althea Winterbourne, he reluctantly agrees to be introduced to society–with the Winterbourne clan’s golden boy as his guide.

Resigning himself to a few days of boredom, Adam is surprised to learn that there is much more to Lysander than his perfect surface. But will Adam have the courage to introduce Lysander Winterbourne to his own secret self?

Introducing Mr. Winterbourne is a novella that originally appeared in the Another Place in Time anthology.


Introducing Mr. Winterbourne is a lovely short read that ticked nearly all my boxes.  I certainly understand Adam's preconceived ideas of the aristocracy that Lysander is a member of but I also feel for Lysander for being judged because of the family he was born into.  Watching Adam and Lysander get to know each other and find a connection neither saw coming is a journey that made me smile.  The only box it didn't quite tick was that it was just too short but I regret nothing about giving Introducing Mr. Winterbourne a chance, definitely a heartwarming experience and if we were to see these two again pop up again I'll be first in line to read😉😉

RATING: 

Author Bio:
Joanna Chambers always wanted to write. She spent over 20 years staring at blank sheets of paper and despairing of ever writing a single word. In between staring at blank sheets of paper, she studied law, met her husband and had two children. Whilst nursing her first child, she rediscovered her love of romance and found her muse. Joanna lives in Scotland with her family and finds time to write by eschewing sleep and popular culture.


FACEBOOK  /  TWITTER  /  WEBSITE
GOOGLE PLAY  /  KOBO  /  B&N
iTUNES  /  AMAZON  /  GOODREADS
EMAIL: authorjoannachambers@gmail.com



AMAZON US  /  AMAZON UK  /  B&N

Release Tour: Butterflies and Flutterbyes - Dreaming in Words by Maggie Lowe

Title: Butterflies and Flutterbyes: Dreaming in Words
Author: Maggie Lowe
Genre: Women's Poetry
Release Date: June 15, 2018
Cover Design: Chandra TruLove Fry
Publisher: Hydra Productions
Summary:
This is a collection of poems straight from the heart of Maggie Lowe. Some will bring you to tears, and some will light your face with a smile. They will touch your heart and warm your soul.




Author Bio:
Author Maggie Lowe has been writing ever since she was able to pick up a pencil. As a child she could create worlds of all kinds. At the age of eight she wrote her first song. When she was thirteen she wrote her first fan-fiction story. At the age of twenty-five she wrote her first book that she hopes to publish someday soon. And now, at the age of thirty-three she published her first poetry book. Now she is currently working on several WIPs and looks to the future full of hope and excitement for what's to come!


FACEBOOK  /  TWITTER  /  MeWe




Brought to you by:

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Saturday's Series Spotlight: The Looking Glass by Penny Brandon


Titles: Choices, First Kiss, His Heart's Desire
Author: Penny Brandon
Series: The Looking Glass #1-3
Genre: M/M Romance, Paranormal, Fantasy
Release Date: June 14, 2018


🔍🔮🔍Though The Looking Glass is a series of three books, each one can be read as a standalone, however, there is one character (The Mirror's Keeper - Simon) who is a part of the first two books, and his story is told in the third. So those reading His Heart's Desire (The Looking Glass 3) may want to read the first book Choices (TLG 1), and then the second book First Kiss (TLG 2) if they want to get the whole of Simon's story. But those reading Choices or First Kiss don't need to read either of the others.🔎🔮🔎

Choices #1
Summary:
Marc was straight, always had been and always thought he would be, but when shown his true love in a magic mirror he was shocked to find out his true love was a man. Not only that, it was up to him to convince his true love they were meant to be together. All bad enough, but after finding Liam, the only way he's able to persuade Liam to go out with him is to offer him sex – even though that was something Marc was definitely not ready for.

Liam thought Marc was crazy. Marc was straight and he was talking about true love and making a life together, but Liam didn't believe in love and he certainly wasn't going to fall in love with a crazy straight guy regardless of how sexy he was. But he hadn't reckoned on Marc's pushy attitude or his offer of sex which, no matter how much he knew he should, Liam couldn't turn down.

First Kiss #2
Summary:
The second Brenn saw Joey’s image in the magic mirror, he was hooked. The moment he saw him in real life, Brenn knew Joey was going to be his forever. Joey was flirty, and fun, and he had the most gorgeous smile, but then Joey told him he was dying. Though devastated, Brenn didn’t want to give up on Joey, so he offered to look after him and make his last few days as comfortable as possible, but was that going to be enough when all Brenn really wanted was for Joey to live?

Brenn was everything Joey could have wished for; strong, built, and with the most amazing eyes. Also, Brenn was in love with him. That would have given Joey something to live for, if it hadn’t been too late. He had about three weeks left, but that didn’t seem to matter to Brenn. Brenn wanted to take him home, and Joey was willing to go with him, but on two conditions. He wanted Brenn to make love to him before he died, but no kissing.

His Heart's Desire #3
Summary:
As the keeper of a magic mirror that shows those lucky few their one true love, Simon dreams of the day it will show him his, but he never dreamt of a punk-assed kid with ripped jeans and rainbow colored hair. Devastated, Simon tries to push Alex away, refusing to tell him they were fated, but Alex keeps coming back, showing all the signs of a man drawn to his soulmate. Realizing he’s made a terrible mistake, Simon figures the only way to fix it is to be the man Alex wants because Alex is the man Simon needs if he’s ever to have a future.

Never before has Alex fallen so hard for a man who obviously doesn’t like him, but Alex is sure there’s a passionate man beneath Simon’s prickly exterior. Peeling away Simon’s layers is like ripping off a bandaid, but it’s worth it when Alex finally has Simon in his arms. The problem is, though he may have Simon’s body, he doesn’t have his heart, and that’s the part Alex wants most. Until he finds out Simon has lied to him.


Choices #1
Simon glanced up from his incessant paperwork as the light tinkle of the bell above the door announced the arrival of a customer. Glad of the respite, he pushed the bundle of inventory notes to the side. He stood and slipped out from behind the vintage walnut desk that functioned as his service counter, and approached the man.

“May I help you?” he asked, smiling.

The smile the customer attempted to give back was filled with confusion. “I’m not sure. I don’t actually know what I’m doing here; I was on my way for coffee…”

The silence that followed the bemused confession was interlaced with the loud and continuous ticking of the antique grandfather clock situated at the far end of the shop. Sometimes soothing, sometimes irritating, never unnoticed, it ticked off a few seconds while the customer grew more confused, especially when he looked around and saw where he was.

Simon nodded slowly and brushed a dark strand of hair from his face. He was familiar with these types of customers; those searching for something though they had no idea what it was. He was going to have to show him.

He looked the guy over. Youngish, around mid-twenties, neatly dressed, suit and tie, smart haircut. Not his type, though cute if you went for the office look, but if the man was here for the reason Simon suspected, being his type would not have made the blindest difference in the world. The customer belonged to someone else.

Inwardly smiling this time, Simon inclined his head and took off his glasses, tucking them into his shirt pocket. “I think you may find what you’re looking for over there,” he said, indicating the back of the store.

“But I’m not looking for anything.” The tightly voiced remark only confirmed Simon’s thoughts.

“Then maybe something is looking for you.”

He motioned for the customer to follow as he headed toward the rear of the shop, noticing light brown eyes narrowing before the man reluctantly trailed after him, though he kept pausing and his eyes kept darting to and fro. He seemed more confused than ever, which was no less than Simon now expected. A lot of his clients were confused when they came here, but they all had a compulsion to find out what it was Simon offered to show them. That was what Simon was here for.

As they walked through the antique furniture and collectibles, the customer occasionally brushed his fingers against the larger, more opulent pieces. At one point he stopped and picked up an ornate frame, his fingertips caressing the heavily carved wood. Sensual, Simon noted, and smiled wistfully. Not my type, belongs to someone else, he reminded himself. Yeah, but it had been years.

The monotonous ticking got louder as they neared the far wall. The antiques here were older, bigger, heavier, and had been in the shop a long time—as had the piece Simon needed to show the man. At the further expression of bewilderment on the man’s face, Simon guessed he didn’t go for antiques; that his tastes ran toward a more contemporary look. That was okay. Simon wasn’t trying to sell him anything.

“Perhaps you’ll find something of interest in that corner,” he said, pointing. The man looked at him, his expressive eyes full of speculation. “Trust me,” Simon added, indicating the corner once again.

The man took a step toward the dark recess that housed the shop’s oldest piece. His steps were hesitant at first, but at a glint of reflected light, he moved closer.

The mirror stood six feet tall, its scratched and dented teak oval frame plain and simple while the glass surface was speckled and dusty. It did appear old, but not as in ancient, just neglected and unwanted. In reality, it didn’t even look like it should be in a shop like this. Maybe in some secondhand junk store with the bargain-basement pieces, but unlike the rest of the items in the shop, the mirror was priceless; its worth immeasurable.

“Do you see anything?” Simon asked, holding his breath slightly in anticipation.

The man glanced back at him, then stood in front of the mirror and gasped.

Some found the mirror on their own. Others, like this one, needed to be shown. All of them reacted the same way.

“What is it?” the man asked, his hand outstretched, his fingers a hairbreadth away from touching the surface. He wouldn’t touch it. No one did.

Simon smiled again. He always liked this part. It made all the years he’d been here tolerable.

“It’s your one true love.”

First Kiss #2
“Joey Singleton.” Joey put out his hand and Brenn took it. A tingle started from where their hands touched and traveled through Brenn’s body with lightning speed, igniting heat in his balls and cock. Instantly, he knew this was right, that what the mirror had told him, shown him, was exactly how it should be. Joey was his, now and forever. He smiled.

“Brendon Collins, but my family and friends call me Brenn.”

Joey’s hand remained glued to his until someone, Brenn suspected the dark-haired man, cleared his throat. Joey let go but not without a warm, knowing smile. He leaned in close, enough so the other men could still hear. “Don’t mind Paul. He thinks he’s my keeper.”

“Damn straight I am!” Paul scowled again as Joey laughed.

Brenn’s groin tightened, and he hoped no one was going to ask him to stand up anytime soon because he guessed his erection might raise a few eyebrows. But then, if Joey laughed like that again, an erection wouldn’t be a problem; he’d come in his pants.

“I noticed you from across the room.” Oh, that was cool. Brenn almost groaned as he realized what he’d said.

Joey’s open smile told him Joey didn’t mind. “I noticed you too. I mean, it’s pretty hard not to, being as you’re so big.” His smile changed, and Brenn could have sworn he saw something lewd in the tilt of Joey’s lips and in the unexpected gleam in his eyes.

Suddenly feeling awkward, Brenn glanced at the other two men at the table. Paul was still scowling, and Brenn wondered what he’d done to deserve it. Did Paul have a claim on Joey? Unbidden possessiveness had Brenn scowling back until he noticed the man sitting next to Paul put a hand on Paul’s arm. The touch was intimate and instantly recognizable as one between lovers.

“Leave him be, Paul.”

The man turned to Brenn and held out his hand. “I’m Dave, Paul’s partner.” Dave’s tone was calm, his smile warm.

Brenn shook Dave’s hand and then offered his hand to Paul. Paul took it with a little show of reluctance. Brenn wondered what his problem was. Paul was obviously with Dave, so what was it with Paul and Joey?

“Would you like a drink, Brenn?” Joey’s light voice broke into Brenn’s thoughts. Brenn turned back to him. “No, I’m fine. Thank you.”

“Well, I would. Paul, can you get me a beer?” Joey’s request was both a question and a demand, and it surprised Brenn to hear the authority ringing in his tone. It also intrigued him.

“You don’t—”

“Paul.” The warning note in Dave’s voice stopped Paul from saying any more—so did the grip Dave had on his arm. Paul grumbled but got up. Joey looked at Dave.

Dave grinned. “I’ll go with him.”

Joey watched as both men left the table; then he sighed in relief. “Now that they’ve gone, we can talk. So, how big are you?”

“Big?” Brenn pulled a face. “Six-three, why?”

“No, I mean how big are you?” Joey held his hands apart and indicated a length. The lewd look was back and so was the sparkle in Joey’s perfect blue eyes.

“Oh.” Now that wasn’t a question Brenn had expected to be asked, not so soon anyway. “Um, nine inches.”

“Nine! Are you kidding me? That’s huge!” Joey’s eyes widened, and some color rushed to his cheeks. “How do you cope with something so big?”

Brenn quickly looked around. There was no one within hearing distance. “I’ve never had any complaints.”

“I’m sure you haven’t. Shit, I don’t know if I could take nine inches.”

Not certain where this was going, Brenn smiled. “Well I wasn’t asking you to, but I’m sure you could if you tried.”

Joey’s smirk had Brenn’s dick jumping to attention again. Damn, and he’d only just got it down.

“Pity, ’cause I’d love to try.”

“Are you flirting with me?” Brenn couldn’t help grinning. He hadn’t been sure what Joey would be like, but this cocky attitude was something he found fascinating.

“Flirting? I thought I was coming on to you thick and strong.” Joey leaned even closer and winked. “So where to? Your place or mine?”
“You want to come home with me?” Fuck! Had Joey picked up how Brenn felt about him, or was this how he acted with everyone he met?

“Yeah, I know. Stupid idea, but it was worth a shot.”

Stupid? No, Brenn didn’t think it was stupid. “I’d love to take you home, but don’t you think it’s a bit sudden?” he asked, trying to work out where Joey was coming from. He wanted Joey, but he wasn’t sure if Joey was joking or not. There was something off about this conversation, as if Joey was making fun, but of himself.

“Yeah, I guess so. And I don’t think Paul would let me. He really takes looking after me far too seriously.”

“Looking after you?” That was a strange turn of phrase.

Joey nodded, his smile slipping slightly. “You didn’t notice the wheelchair?” He tapped the arm of the chair he sat in.

Brenn hadn’t noticed it; he’d been too busy gazing at Joey’s face. He peeked down and eyed the wheelchair. Standard hospital issue. “What did you do, break your leg?”

Joey shook his head slowly. “No.”

Brenn glanced back up to Joey’s eyes. They were clouded in sorrow now. “What is it?” he asked, sudden dread filling his heart.

Joey stared at him for a moment as if unsure Brenn was for real, but then he smiled again, though it was twisted with apology and regret.

“I’m dying.”

His Heart's Desire #3
SIMON CLOSED THE door, and before he could stop himself, he sank to his knees, all composure gone as he watched his chance of happiness walk away. A small sob erupted from his throat as the pain of loss bit deep. He’d never get another chance now, and the sense of betrayal felt like a stab to the heart.

Not once in all the years he’d been the mirror’s keeper had he imagined he wouldn’t be the one to see his one true love, his soul’s other half. It was what Simon had yearned for with every cell of his being, a decade long obsession, but instead of being given his heart’s desire, he’d been relegated to someone else’s.

Curled up into a ball on a cold floor, Simon couldn’t believe how everything had gone so appallingly wrong. He’d undertaken everything asked of him, everything his job entailed, but he must have royally fucked up if Alex was his reward.

Alex was the absolute opposite of who Simon had always imagined his ideal partner to be. Simon had always wanted someone older than him, someone with experience, someone who knew how to treat a man. Alex was young, brash enough to be intrusive, and the way he was dressed… Simon groaned as disappointment shot through him like a double-bladed knife. It wasn’t as if he’d expected to meet someone with impeccable taste in clothes, but he most certainly hadn’t anticipated someone who didn’t give a shit. Unless Alex thought his ripped jeans and stained T-shirt were a fashion statement.

It took a moment for Simon to realize he was not just being a snob, but an ungrateful snob. He should have been rejoicing in the fact there was someone out there for him. Instead he was bemoaning the how and the who. Did it matter? Shouldn’t he just accept the mirror’s gift like all those other men before him? Simon winced as he remembered the way Alex had blithely walked into the apartment without regard to privacy or etiquette. Also the way Alex had grabbed Simon’s arm. Feeling the echo of that unwanted touch, Simon shuddered. No, Alex was not a gift. He was a bloody nightmare.

Cold eventually seeped into his consciousness, exacerbating his misery but at least forcing him to come to his senses. He blinked, noticing the darkness outside his windows. Having no idea how long he’d been lying there but guessing it had been several hours, Simon slowly pushed himself into a sitting position. His limbs groaned in protest, but it was the crushing pain behind his eyes that had Simon moaning.

He took a deep breath to clear his head a little and then wiped away the wetness on his cheeks. Moping wasn’t going to help him sort out this situation; he knew that. However, he had no idea what would. He could very well be released from duty as the mirror’s keeper because he had refused to tell Alex the reason behind the image, or he could be forced to stay here as punishment, forever showing other men their heart’s desire while knowing he’d never have his.

Right then neither of those possibilities were something Simon wanted to consider. He had nowhere to go, not from here. The shop had not only been his place of work, but also his home. It had provided food, clothes, and a roof over his head. It had also given him a purpose over the years, one he’d been happy to fulfill until he’d become jealous and impatient.

Castigating himself for being such a fool, Simon got up off the floor, then automatically locked the door before making his way to his apartment. He bypassed the mirror, ignoring the pull that had drawn him toward its darkened face every night since he’d been its keeper. He used to stand before it, his heart filled with hope, with expectancy, waiting for his chance to be shown a glimpse of his soul mate. That had now been stolen from him, and never again would he allow himself to be mocked by the mirror’s blind cruelty.

Author Bio:
Penny is a complete romantic who believes everyone can fall in love if only they'll open their heart to the possibility, which is why she writes these hot erotic stories that will always have a happily every after. However, it doesn't mean that she'll make it easy for her men to get there. A lover of things that go bump in the night, Penny's imagination can sometimes run riot, so magic mirrors and evil dolls are only the beginning.


FACEBOOK  /  TWITTER  /  WEBSITE
NEWSLETTER  /  KOBO  /  B&N
iTUNES  /  AMAZON  /  GOODREADS



Choices #1
AMAZON US  /  AMAZON UK  /  B&N
KOBO  /  iTUNES  /  SMASHWORDS

First Kiss #2

His Heart's Desire #3
AMAZON US  /  AMAZON UK  /  B&N
KOBO  /  iTUNES  /  SMASHWORDS
BOOKS2READ  /  GOODREADS TBR




Brought to you by:   GAY BOOK PROMOS 

Release Blitz: Rainbow Place by Jay Northcote

Title: Rainbow Place
Author: Jay Northcote
Series: Rainbow Place #1
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: June 15, 2018
Cover Design: Garrett Leigh at Black Jazz Design
Summary:
Can Jason find the courage he needs to be the man Seb deserves?

When Seb Radcliffe relocates to a seaside town in Cornwall, he feels like a fish out of water. He misses queer spaces and the sense of community he enjoyed when he was living in the city, and decides to open an LGBT-friendly cafe–bar.

Jason Dunn is the builder Seb hires to help renovate the rundown space where the cafe will be housed. Jason is also gay, but unlike Seb, he’s deep in the closet. He’s never had a relationship with another man—only allowing himself the occasional hook up with guys who are prepared to be discreet.

The attraction between the two men is instant and impossible to ignore. But while Seb is out and proud, Jason is terrified of being exposed. With the grand opening of Rainbow Place approaching, tension is growing among some locals who object to Seb’s plans. When things escalate, Jason is forced to choose whether to hide in the shadows and let Seb down, or to openly support the man he’s fallen so hard for.

🌈Although this book is part of a series, it has a satisfying happy ending and can be read as a standalone.🌈


Author Bio:
Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.

One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.

Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.

Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.


FACEBOOK  /  TWITTER  /  FB FRIEND
WEBSITE  /  NEWSLETTER  /  KOBO
iTUNES  / AUDIBLE  /  TUMBLR
B&N  /  AMAZON  /  GOODREADS
EMAIL: jaynorthcote@gmail.com




Brought to you by:

Friday, June 15, 2018

📘🎥Friday's Film Adaptation🎥📘: Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman


Summary:
Call Me by Your Name is the story of a sudden and powerful romance that blossoms between an adolescent boy and a summer guest at his parents' cliff-side mansion on the Italian Riviera. Unprepared for the consequences of their attraction, at first each feigns indifference. But during the restless summer weeks that follow, unrelenting buried currents of obsession and fear, fascination and desire, intensify their passion as they test the charged ground between them. What grows from the depths of their spirits is a romance of scarcely six weeks' duration and an experience that marks them for a lifetime. For what the two discover on the Riviera and during a sultry evening in Rome is the one thing both already fear they may never truly find again: total intimacy.

The psychological maneuvers that accompany attraction have seldom been more shrewdly captured than in André Aciman's frank, unsentimental, heartrending elegy to human passion. Call Me by Your Name is clear-eyed, bare-knuckled, and ultimately unforgettable.



CHAPTER 1
Part 1
If Not Later, When?

"Later!" The word, the voice, the attitude.

I'd never heard anyone use "later" to say goodbye before. It sounded harsh, curt, and dismissive, spoken with the veiled indifference of people who may not care to see or hear from you again.

It is the first thing I remember about him, and I can hear it still today. Later!

I shut my eyes, say the word, and I'm back in Italy, so many years ago, walking down the tree-lined driveway, watching him step out of the cab, billowy blue shirt, wide-open collar, sunglasses, straw hat, skin everywhere. Suddenly he's shaking my hand, handing me his backpack, removing his suitcase from the trunk of the cab, asking if my father is home.

It might have started right there and then: the shirt, the rolled-up sleeves, the rounded balls of his heels slipping in and out of his frayed espadrilles, eager to test the hot gravel path that led to our house, every stride already asking, Which way to the beach?

This summer's houseguest. Another bore.

Then, almost without thinking, and with his back already turned to the car, he waves the back of his free hand and utters a careless Later! to another passenger in the car who has probably split the fare from the station. No name added, no jest to smooth out the ruffled leave-taking, nothing. His one-word send-off: brisk, bold, and blunted—take your pick, he couldn't be bothered which.

You watch, I thought, this is how he'll say goodbye to us when the time comes. With a gruff, slapdash Later!

Meanwhile, we'd have to put up with him for six long weeks.

I was thoroughly intimidated. The unapproachable sort.

I could grow to like him, though. From rounded chin to rounded heel. Then, within days, I would learn to hate him.

This, the very person whose photo on the application form months earlier had leapt out with promises of instant affinities.


Taking in summer guests was my parents' way of helping young academics revise a manuscript before publication. For six weeks each summer I'd have to vacate my bedroom and move one room down the corridor into a much smaller room that had once belonged to my grandfather. During the winter months, when we were away in the city, it became a part-time toolshed, storage room, and attic where rumor had it my grandfather, my namesake, still ground his teeth in his eternal sleep. Summer residents didn't have to pay anything, were given the full run of the house, and could basically do anything they pleased, provided they spent an hour or so a day helping my father with his correspondence and assorted paperwork. They became part of the family, and after about fifteen years of doing this, we had gotten used to a shower of postcards and gift packages not only around Christmastime but all year long from people who were now totally devoted to our family and would go out of their way when they were in Europe to drop by B. for a day or two with their family and take a nostalgic tour of their old digs.

At meals there were frequently two or three other guests, sometimes neighbors or relatives, sometimes colleagues, lawyers, doctors, the rich and famous who'd drop by to see my father on their way to their own summer houses. Sometimes we'd even open our dining room to the occasional tourist couple who'd heard of the old villa and simply wanted to come by and take a peek and were totally enchanted when asked to eat with us and tell us all about themselves, while Mafalda, informed at the last minute, dished out her usual fare. My father, who was reserved and shy in private, loved nothing better than to have some precocious rising expert in a field keep the conversation going in a few languages while the hot summer sun, after a few glasses of rosatello, ushered in the unavoidable afternoon torpor. We named the task dinner drudgery—and, after a while, so did most of our six-week guests.


Maybe it started soon after his arrival during one of those grinding lunches when he sat next to me and it finally dawned on me that, despite a light tan acquired during his brief stay in Sicily earlier that summer, the color on the palms of his hands was the same as the pale, soft skin of his soles, of his throat, of the bottom of his forearms, which hadn't really been exposed to much sun. Almost a light pink, as glistening and smooth as the underside of a lizard's belly. Private, chaste, unfledged, like a blush on an athlete's face or an instance of dawn on a stormy night. It told me things about him I never knew to ask.

It may have started during those endless hours after lunch when everybody lounged about in bathing suits inside and outside the house, bodies sprawled everywhere, killing time before someone finally suggested we head down to the rocks for a swim. Relatives, cousins, neighbors, friends, friends of friends, colleagues, or just about anyone who cared to knock at our gate and ask if they could use our tennis court—everyone was welcome to lounge and swim and eat and, if they stayed long enough, use the guesthouse.


Or perhaps it started on the beach. Or at the tennis court. Or during our first walk together on his very first day when I was asked to show him the house and its surrounding area and, one thing leading to the other, managed to take him past the very old forged-iron metal gate as far back as the endless empty lot in the hinterland toward the abandoned train tracks that used to connect B. to N. "Is there an abandoned station house somewhere?" he asked, looking through the trees under the scalding sun, probably trying to ask the right question of the owner's son. "No, there was never a station house. The train simply stopped when you asked." He was curious about the train; the rails seemed so narrow. It was a two-wagon train bearing the royal insignia, I explained. Gypsies lived in it now. They'd been living there ever since my mother used to summer here as a girl. The gypsies had hauled the two derailed cars farther inland. Did he want to see them? "Later. Maybe." Polite indifference, as if he'd spotted my misplaced zeal to play up to him and was summarily pushing me away.

But it stung me.

Instead, he said he wanted to open an account in one of the banks in B., then pay a visit to his Italian translator, whom his Italian publisher had engaged for his book.

I decided to take him there by bike.

The conversation was no better on wheels than on foot. Along the way, we stopped for something to drink. The bartabaccheria was totally dark and empty. The owner was mopping the floor with a powerful ammonia solution. We stepped outside as soon as we could. A lonely blackbird, sitting in a Mediterranean pine, sang a few notes that were immediately drowned out by the rattle of the cicadas.

I took a long swill from a large bottle of mineral water, passed it to him, then drank from it again. I spilled some on my hand and rubbed my face with it, running my wet fingers through my hair. The water was insufficiently cold, not fizzy enough, leaving behind an unslaked likeness of thirst.

What did one do around here?

Nothing. Wait for summer to end.

What did one do in the winter, then?

I smiled at the answer I was about to give. He got the gist and said, "Don't tell me: wait for summer to come, right?"

I liked having my mind read. He'd pick up on dinner drudgery sooner than those before him.

"Actually, in the winter the place gets very gray and dark. We come for Christmas. Otherwise it's a ghost town."

"And what else do you do here at Christmas besides roast chestnuts and drink eggnog?"

He was teasing. I offered the same smile as before. He understood, said nothing, we laughed.

He asked what I did. I played tennis. Swam. Went out at night. Jogged. Transcribed music. Read.

He said he jogged too. Early in the morning. Where did one jog around here? Along the promenade, mostly. I could show him if he wanted.

It hit me in the face just when I was starting to like him again: "Later, maybe."

I had put reading last on my list, thinking that, with the willful, brazen attitude he'd displayed so far, reading would figure last on his. A few hours later, when I remembered that he had just finished writing a book on Heraclitus and that "reading" was probably not an insignificant part of his life, I realized that I needed to perform some clever backpedaling and let him know that my real interests lay right alongside his. What unsettled me, though, was not the fancy footwork needed to redeem myself. It was the unwelcome misgivings with which it finally dawned on me, both then and during our casual conversation by the train tracks, that I had all along, without seeming to, without even admitting it, already been trying—and failing—to win him over.

When I did offer—because all visitors loved the idea—to take him to San Giacomo and walk up to the very top of the belfry we nicknamed To-die-for, I should have known better than to just stand there without a comeback. I thought I'd bring him around simply by taking him up there and letting him take in the view of the town, the sea, eternity. But no. Later!


But it might have started way later than I think without my noticing anything at all. You see someone, but you don't really see him, he's in the wings. Or you notice him, but nothing clicks, nothing "catches," and before you're even aware of a presence, or of something troubling you, the six weeks that were offered you have almost passed and he's either already gone or just about to leave, and you're basically scrambling to come to terms with something, which, unbeknownst to you, has been brewing for weeks under your very nose and bears all the symptoms of what you're forced to call I want. How couldn't I have known, you ask? I know desire when I see it—and yet, this time, it slipped by completely. I was going for the devious smile that would suddenly light up his face each time he'd read my mind, when all I really wanted was skin, just skin.

At dinner on his third evening, I sensed that he was staring at me as I was explaining Haydn's Seven Last Words of Christ, which I'd been transcribing. I was seventeen that year and, being the youngest at the table and the least likely to be listened to, I had developed the habit of smuggling as much information into the fewest possible words. I spoke fast, which gave people the impression that I was always flustered and muffling my words. After I had finished explaining my transcription, I became aware of the keenest glance coming from my left. It thrilled and flattered me; he was obviously interested—he liked me. It hadn't been as difficult as all that, then. But when, after taking my time, I finally turned to face him and take in his glance, I met a cold and icy glare—something at once hostile and vitrified that bordered on cruelty.

It undid me completely. What had I done to deserve this? I wanted him to be kind to me again, to laugh with me as he had done just a few days earlier on the abandoned train tracks, or when I'd explained to him that same afternoon that B. was the only town in Italy where the corriera, the regional bus line, carrying Christ, whisked by without ever stopping. He had immediately laughed and recognized the veiled allusion to Carlo Levi's book. I liked how our minds seemed to travel in parallel, how we instantly inferred what words the other was toying with but at the last moment held back.

He was going to be a difficult neighbor. Better stay away from him, I thought. To think that I had almost fallen for the skin of his hands, his chest, his feet that had never touched a rough surface in their existence—and his eyes, which, when their other, kinder gaze fell on you, came like the miracle of the Resurrection. You could never stare long enough but needed to keep staring to find out why you couldn't.

I must have shot him a similarly wicked glance.

For two days our conversations came to a sudden halt.

On the long balcony that both our bedrooms shared, total avoidance: just a makeshift hello, good morning, nice weather, shallow chitchat.

Then, without explanation, things resumed.

Did I want to go jogging this morning? No, not really. Well, let's swim, then.

Today, the pain, the stoking, the thrill of someone new, the promise of so much bliss hovering a fingertip away, the fumbling around people I might misread and don't want to lose and must second-guess at every turn, the desperate cunning I bring to everyone I want and crave to be wanted by, the screens I put up as though between me and the world there were not just one but layers of rice-paper sliding doors, the urge to scramble and unscramble what was never really coded in the first place—all these started the summer Oliver came into our house. They are embossed on every song that was a hit that summer, in every novel I read during and after his stay, on anything from the smell of rosemary on hot days to the frantic rattle of the cicadas in the afternoon—smells and sounds I'd grown up with and known every year of my life until then but that had suddenly turned on me and acquired an inflection forever colored by the events of that summer.


Or perhaps it started after his first week, when I was thrilled to see he still remembered who I was, that he didn't ignore me, and that, therefore, I could allow myself the luxury of passing him on my way to the garden and not having to pretend I was unaware of him. We jogged early on the first morning—all the way up to B. and back. Early the next morning we swam. Then, the day after, we jogged again. I liked racing by the milk delivery van when it was far from done with its rounds, or by the grocer and the baker as they were just getting ready for business, liked to run along the shore and the promenade when there wasn't a soul about yet and our house seemed a distant mirage. I liked it when our feet were aligned, left with left, and struck the ground at the same time, leaving footprints on the shore that I wished to return to and, in secret, place my foot where his had left its mark.

This alternation of running and swimming was simply his "routine" in graduate school. Did he run on the Sabbath? I joked. He always exercised, even when he was sick; he'd exercise in bed if he had to. Even when he'd slept with someone new the night before, he said, he'd still head out for a jog early in the morning. The only time he didn't exercise was when they operated on him. When I asked him what for, the answer I had promised never to incite in him came at me like the thwack of a jack-in-the-box wearing a baleful smirk. "Later."

Perhaps he was out of breath and didn't want to talk too much or just wanted to concentrate on his swimming or his running. Or perhaps it was his way of spurring me to do the same—totally harmless.

But there was something at once chilling and off-putting in the sudden distance that crept between us in the most unexpected moments. It was almost as though he were doing it on purpose; feeding me slack, and more slack, and then yanking away any semblance of fellowship.

The steely gaze always returned. One day, while I was practicing my guitar at what had become "my table" in the back garden by the pool and he was lying nearby on the grass, I recognized the gaze right away. He had been staring at me while I was focusing on the fingerboard, and when I suddenly raised my face to see if he liked what I was playing, there it was: cutting, cruel, like a glistening blade instantly retracted the moment its victim caught sight of it. He gave me a bland smile, as though to say, No point hiding it now.

Stay away from him.

He must have noticed I was shaken and in an effort to make it up to me began asking me questions about the guitar. I was too much on my guard to answer him with candor. Meanwhile, hearing me scramble for answers made him suspect that perhaps more was amiss than I was showing. "Don't bother explaining. Just play it again." But I thought you hated it. Hated it? Whatever gave you that idea? We argued back and forth. "Just play it, will you?" "The same one?" "The same one."

I stood up and walked into the living room, leaving the large French windows open so that he might hear me play it on the piano. He followed me halfway and, leaning on the windows' wooden frame, listened for a while.

"You changed it. It's not the same. What did you do to it?"

"I just played it the way Liszt would have played it had he jimmied around with it."

"Just play it again, please!"

I liked the way he feigned exasperation. So I started playing the piece again.

After a while: "I can't believe you changed it again."

"Well, not by much. This is just how Busoni would have played it if he had altered Liszt's version."

"Can't you just play the Bach the way Bach wrote it?"

"But Bach never wrote it for guitar. He may not even have written it for the harpsichord. In fact, we're not even sure it's by Bach at all."

"Forget I asked."

"Okay, okay. No need to get so worked up," I said. It was my turn to feign grudging acquiescence. "This is the Bach as transcribed by me without Busoni and Liszt. It's a very young Bach and it's dedicated to his brother."

I knew exactly what phrase in the piece must have stirred him the first time, and each time I played it, I was sending it to him as a little gift, because it was really dedicated to him, as a token of something very beautiful in me that would take no genius to figure out and that urged me to throw in an extended cadenza. Just for him.

We were—and he must have recognized the signs long before I did—flirting.


Later that evening in my diary, I wrote: I was exaggerating when I said I thought you hated the piece. What I meant to say was: I thought you hated me. I was hoping you'd persuade me of the opposite—and you did, for a while. Why won't I believe it tomorrow morning?

So this is who he also is, I said to myself after seeing how he'd flipped from ice to sunshine.

I might as well have asked: Do I flip back and forth in just the same way?

Film
In the summer of 1983, in the north of Italy, Elio Perlman, a 17-year-old American spends his days in his family's 17th century villa lazily transcribing music and flirting with his friend Marzia. One day Oliver, a 24-year-old graduate student working on his doctorate arrives as the annual summer intern tasked with helping Elio's father, an eminent professor specializing in Greco-Roman culture. Soon, Elio and Oliver discover a summer that will alter their lives forever.

Release Date: January 22, 2017(Sundance)
November 24, 2017(US)
Release Time: 132 minutes

Cast:
Timothée Chalamet as Elio Perlman
Armie Hammer as Oliver
Michael Stuhlbarg as Mr. Perlman
Amira Casar as Annella Perlman
Esther Garrel as Marzia
Victoire Du Bois as Chiara
Vanda Capriolo as Mafalda
Antonio Rimoldi as Anchise
Elena Bucci as Bambi
Marco Sgrosso as Nico
André Aciman as Mounir
Peter Spears as Isaac

Awards: WIKI List of Accolades
2018 Academy Awards
Best Picture - Peter Spears, Luca Guadagnino, Emilie Georges, and Marco Morabito - Nominated
Best Actor - Timothée Chalamet - Nominated
Best Adapted Screenplay - James Ivory - Won
Best Original Song - "Mystery of Love" by Sufjan Stevens - Nominated

2018 BAFTAs
Best Film - Call Me by Your Name - Nominated
Best Director - Luca Guadagnino - Nominated
Best Adapted Screenplay - James Ivory - Won
Best Actor in a Leading Role - Timothée Chalamet - Nominated

2018 Golden Globes
Best Motion Picture – Drama - Call Me by Your Name - Nominated
Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama - Timothée Chalamet - Nominated
Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture - Armie Hammer - Nominated


Trailer

Clips



Author Bio:
André Aciman is an American memoirist, essayist, and New York Times bestselling novelist originally from Alexandria, Egypt. He has also written many essays and reviews on Marcel Proust. His work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, The New York Times, The New Republic, Condé Nast Traveler, The Paris Review, Granta as well as in many volumes of The Best American Essays.

Aciman grew up in a multilingual and multinational family and attended English-language schools, first in Alexandria and later, after his family moved to Italy in 1965, in Rome. In 1968, Aciman's family moved again, this time to New York City, where he graduated in 1973 from Lehman College. Aciman received his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Harvard University and, after teaching at Princeton University and Bard College, is Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature at The Graduate Center of The City University of New York. He is currently chair of the Ph. D. Program in Comparative Literature and founder and director of The Writers' Institute at the Graduate Center. He has also taught creative writing at New York University, Cooper Union, and and Yeshiva University. In 2009, Aciman was also Visiting Distinguished Writer at Wesleyan University.

Aciman is the author of the Whiting Award-winning memoir Out of Egypt (1995), an account of his childhood as a Jew growing up in post-colonial Egypt. His books and essays have been translated in many languages. In addition to Out of Egypt (1995), Aciman has published False Papers: Essays in Exile and Memory (2001) and Alibis: Essays on Elswhere (2011), and four novels, Enigma Variations (2017), Harvard Square (2013), Eight White Nights (2010) and Call Me By Your Name (2007), for which he won the Lambda Literary Award for Men's Fiction (2008). He also edited Letters of Transit (1999) and The Proust Project (2004) and prefaced Monsieur Proust (2003), The Light of New York (2007), Condé Nast Traveler's Room With a View (2010) and Stefan Zweig's Journey to the Past (2010). His novel Call Me by Your Name has been turned into a film (2017), directed by Luca Guadagnino, with a screenplay by James Ivory, and starring Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet.

He is currently working on his fifth novel and a collection of essays.


GOOGLE PLAY  /  KOBO  /  iTUNES
AUDIBLE  /  INDIE BOUND  /  B&N
AMAZON  /  WIKI  /  GOODREADS



AMAZON US  /  AMAZON UK  /  B&N
KOBO  /  iTUNES  /  iTUNES AUDIO
GOOGLE PLAY  /  AUDIBLE  /  WIKI

Film
AMAZON US  /  AMAZON UK  /  B&N
FACEBOOK  /  TWITTER  /  WEBSITE
INSTAGRAM  /  WIKI  /  IMDB  /  TCM