Title: The Player's Protege
Series: A Campus Connections Story
Author: CJane Elliott
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: 6/7/19
Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex
Length: 93 pages
Genre: Romance, New Adult, contemporary, college, coming of age
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When his friends bet cynical Jerry that he can’t turn sweet Arlo into a player, Jerry might win the bet but lose his heart.
College senior Jerry Helstrom survived a gay childhood in Texas by being fierce and fabulous. At school he’s known as a player and has kept his heart so guarded that he’s forgotten he has one. When his friends bet him he can’t teach inexperienced Arlo Barnes to become a stud like him, Jerry takes on the challenge and quickly finds himself drawn to his enticing trainee.
Arlo kicks butt as a Tae Kwon Do black belt, but his sexual game is lacking. He’s been dumped by his only boyfriend and needs help getting himself out there. Enter Jerry Helstrom, player extraordinaire and happy to provide Arlo with some hands-on coaching. Jerry encourages Arlo to ask for what he wants in sex and in life, something Arlo struggles with. The struggle deepens when Arlo discovers that what he truly wants is the seemingly unattainable Jerry Helstrom.
Jerry can teach Arlo to play the field, but can Arlo teach Jerry to play for keeps?
Thank you to My Fiction Nook for having me on today to share about my latest release, The Player’s Protégé, the second story in the Campus Connections series. It features Jerry, the cynical best friend of Eric from The Kinsey Scale, and Arlo, a sweet, inexperienced guy for whom Jerry becomes a mentor.
This is blog post #8 in the tour. We’ve looked at the backstory for Jerry and Arlo and their barriers to love. They’ve met—and it didn’t go so well. But now they’re stuck with each other, because Arlo wants mentoring and Jerry made a bet with his friends. In their first mentoring session Jerry is irritable and Arlo is defensive. But as they continue on, they warm up and start to appreciate one another.
At this point in a romance story, the heroes are experiencing deepening desire, despite still having the barriers to love that are waiting to trip them up. My favorite scene of The Player’s Protégé comes right at this part in the romance arc. Arlo wants to get more sexual experience than his previous partner was interested in and Jerry gets the bright (and naughty) idea to give him some hands-on coaching. I just love his struggle.
As he bit into a date, Jerry had a thought—a sudden, delicious, and sinful thought. No. He chewed the date and savored its sticky sweetness. Why not? Who better than you to give the boy some practical sexual instruction? It doesn’t have to mean anything, and when you’re done with him, he’ll be an awesome top. Jerry squirmed as he tried to beat back his desire with a shred of common sense.
“Umm, Jerry? Are you okay?”
“Yes.” He was about to say that the guys on Grindr would happily accommodate a cute but inexperienced top and that he could give some… verbal pointers, but his evil side took the floor. “Here’s the thing, Arlo. I can tell you about being a top. I can describe it and give you some good info. But it’s like they say about riding a bicycle.” He stopped, a part of himself unable to believe what he was actually going to propose.
“Uh… so, what do they say?”
“That until you hop on and ride, all the descriptions in the world are just that—descriptions.” He stopped once more and struggled as his higher or saner self told him not to go there. Fuck off, Mr. Horny retorted. “So, I’m going to propose that I show you how to top through having you top me.”
Arlo flushed the brightest red Jerry had seen so far. “You’d do that?” His voice sounded strangled.
“Oh yes.” Jerry’s cheeks warmed, and his own voice was unacceptably husky. “That is,” he continued more nonchalantly, “it seems the most practical and fastest way to get you over your hump, as it were. Once you see that you can top just fine, then we’ll unleash you on Grindr and all those grateful bottoms.”
We’ll leave it there for now. Jerry is about to get the surprise of his life. Don’t you love it when the student schools the teacher?
To see how the story progresses, check out my next blog tour post. You can find the schedule at my website. Follow along for more chances to win.
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Meet the AuthorAfter years of hearing characters chatting away in her head, CJane Elliott finally decided to put them on paper and hasn’t looked back since. A psychotherapist by training, CJane enjoys writing sexy, passionate stories that also explore the human psyche.
CJane has traveled all over North America for work, and her characters are travelers too, traveling into their own depths to find what they need to get to the happy ending. CJane is an ardent supporter of LGBTQ equality and is particularly fond of coming-out stories. In her spare time, CJane can be found dancing, listening to music, or watching old movies. Her family supports her writing habit by staying out of the way when they see her hunched over, staring intently at her laptop.
CJane is the author of the award-winning Serpentine Series, New Adult contemporary novels set at the University of Virginia. Serpentine Walls was a 2014 Rainbow Awards finalist, Aidan’s Journey was a 2015 EPIC Awards finalist, and Sex, Love, and Videogames won first place in the New Adult category in the 2016 Swirl Awards and first place in Contemporary Fiction in the 2017 EPIC eBook Awards. All the Way to Shore was Runner Up for Best Bisexual Novel in the 2017 Rainbow Awards.
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