Rook is chasing her dream—film school and a chance at a life beyond the one she ran from six months ago. But before she can become the girl she wants to be, she must deal with the girl she left behind.
Ronin is also chasing his dream—a family of his own and a life away from erotic modeling. And he too, has a past he’s trying to forget. A past that makes Rook question everything about their life together.
Lies, secrets, and shocking truths will rock the foundation Rook and Ronin have built. Can they put the past behind them and move forward together? Or is this just another too good to be true relationship that will crash and burn in the end?
We pass by her Shrike Rook bike as we walk to the truck and I catch her eyeing it with longing. “You gonna ride that thing, you think?”
“Absolutely. I can’t wait.”
“Hmmm, I’m not sure about that, Rook. It makes me nervous. Don’t ride it alone, OK? Make sure you’ve got Spence or one of the shop guys with you.”
I lean back against the truck and she pushes herself into me and purrs in my ear, “You worry too much, Larue. I’m a big girl. I’m only gonna ride it for a few weeks before it starts snowing. Besides, I have the Shrike truck to hold me over until I figure out what kind of car I want.”
“And that’s another thing—”
“Don’t start with me! I’m buying my own car, I already told you that.”
I lean down and kiss her gently. “What were you gonna give me, Gidget?” Her hands slip under my t-shirt and chills ride up my body. “Fuck, I’m gonna miss you.”
“Well,” she coos in my ear. “I’m gonna miss you too. But the gift I’m giving you before you leave is my heart.”
And then she turns her bright blue eyes up at me and I feel it.
I’m not a romantic, I’m really not. I believe in love and all that shit, and I like to make girls happy with presents and careful attention as far as sex goes. But this is something else entirely. She makes my heart ache. Literally. My chest feels like it’s gonna be ripped apart from the longing, that’s how much I love this girl. “I’m totally taking that gift, Rook. And I’m never giving it back, so please don’t ask for it.”
How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing fiction for about two years and non-fiction for about six years.
What inspired you to write the Rook and Ronin series?
TRAGIC was a fluke. I was looking at stock art, trying to find a smexy picture of lovers to use as a cover for another book, and I started wondering if the passion in some of these images was real or whether or not they were faking it. I thought I could tell the difference, you know? Like the passionate ones weren’t faking it, but really feeling it and that’s what made those pictures stand out from the others. So I decided to write a story based off that premise.
Did you plan for it to be a series?
Yes. I knew Rook had issues to deal with from her past and I thought it was unreasonable and unrealistic to expect her to do that in one book. I wanted to give her time to figure out who she is, make mistakes getting what she thinks she wants, then learn from them and make new mistakes. Life is a process and I wanted Rook’s character arc to follow this process.
Which of your characters do you relate to most and why?
Rook. I’ve been Rook. I escaped a very bad relationship by moving to a new city with two kids. I didn’t get a modeling job out of it, but I did get a master’s degree.
What is a secret about you that nobody else knows?
Secret that no one knows, that’s tough. I don’t think I have any of those! But I’ll tell you something most people don’t know – I’ve seen Metallica in concert five times.
If your real life was a fictional book, what would you, the main character, be like?
It really depends on what life stage I was in. I’m very mellow and easy going now, but I wasn’t always like this. My life could make up a whole month’s worth of Lifetime Movie of the Week docudramas. It’s been a crazy ride.
What book have you read too many times to count?
Woken Furies by Richard K. Morgan. I can almost recite this book in my sleep.
What is the best piece of writing advice you ever received?
If you want to pay your bills as an author, write what people want to read. Also, write a crapload of books. Even if the first ten suck, you get better with each one and you never know which book will appeal to a large audience.
If you could hop into the life of any fictional character, who would it be and why?
Cinderella, for all the obvious and shallow reasons.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
Well, for TRAGIC, I think I learned that I like writing humor. This book has a few funny parts that I love and my SF series is very dark, so it was a nice change for me. Also, sexy scenes don’t always have to have sex in them.
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
Read mostly, but I like watching movies and wasting a bunch of time on Facebook and Twitter, too!
Are any of the things in your books based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?
A little bit of both. Obviously a lot of my science fiction stuff is made up, but there are lots of places and things that are real, even in that series. Almost all my books take place in Colorado and that’s because I live here. Tragic and Manic take place in Denver and Panic takes place mostly in Fort Collins, which is where I went to college for undergrad. All the modeling and body painting stuff from Tragic and Manic is all made up. I have no idea how any of that is done, but I imagine artists are particular. If Antoine Chaput wants to run his studio a certain way, no one can tell him he can’t. I like to go with that assumption when I’m creating a setting and characters. That way I own everything about that world.
Thank you for having me on your blog today and I hope you enjoyed the book! :)
JA Huss is a SF and new adult romance junkie,
has a love-hate relationship with the bad boys, and likes to write new adult books about people with real problems.
She lives with her family on a small acreage farm in Colorado and has two donkeys named Paris and Nicole. Before writing fiction,
she authored almost two hundred science workbooks and always has at least three works in progress. Her first new adult romance is called TRAGIC.