Hi guys! Today I am really excited to welcome back the fabulous Jacob Flores to the blog. Jacob is here to talk to us more about his new book, Moral Authority, including sharing an excerpt. He has also included details on entering his contest. So please join me in giving Jacob a big welcome!
Hi, everyone! I’m Jacob Z. Flores, and I’m super excited to be back here at Joyfully Jay. This is my second time here, and Jay has pulled out all the stops for this visit. The cocktail was super yummy last time, but today I not only have a cocktail but a barely dressed man as my assistant for the day. According to Jay, he’s to cater to my every whim, and boy, do I have lots of whims! Thanks, Jay! You sure know how to make a boy feel special. [But of course, I am very good about sharing my barely dressed boy toys with my friends!]
Now, while my assistant works the tension out of my…shoulders, I figured I should tell you why I’m here. I’m kicking off my blog tour at Joyfully Jay for Moral Authority, which just released from Wilde City Press.
Just what is Moral Authority?
Let me start by telling you what it’s not.
It’s not a gay romance. It does have gay main characters, but it’s considered gay mainstream fiction because the crux of the novel isn’t about two characters falling in love.
For those of you who love romance, don’t worry. There are two characters who fall in love. It’s just that their story isn’t the primary focus of the novel.
What is the focus then?
Well, Moral Authority actually follows three different characters—Mary Bryan, Isaac Montoya, and Samuel Pleasant. They live in America of 2050, where lifestyle legislation rules the land. The Moral Authority is actually the name of the fourth branch of government that was created to provide citizens with a moral code of conduct.
The Moral Authority was created to combat rampant crime, domestic terrorist threats, and increased national discontent. It was the hopes of the government to provide a federal agency that would be challenged with creating a moral compass for all to follow. Fostering civil peace amidst national chaos was the goal. If we could be united, then order would be established.
The Moral Authority did achieve that goal, but success always comes with a price.
Morality, a subjective term, is now defined by the government. If an act, lifestyle, or behavior is deemed immoral, it is then considered illegal.
Cursing is outlawed and caloric intake is monitored. Being a homosexual and getting a divorce are criminal offenses. The decisions many made at home now fall under government jurisdiction.
In short, the government runs our lives, and Moral Authority charts the path of a nation that defines and limits civil rights instead of broadening them for all.
After all, isn’t that the kind of America some people want?
I’d like to thank Jay once again for letting me stop by and for the cocktail. I will be taking my new assistant with me though. He has proven invaluable to my stress reducing needs. [Hey! Boy toy stays here, mister!]
I also have included a blurb and an excerpt below for those who’d like to read them. Additionally, as part of my blog tour I’m holding a contest. All you have to do is follow the Rafflecopter link at the end of the post and your name is entered to win a free copy of Moral Authority. If a reader happens to follow all my blog stops, then she or he can leave a comment at the other sites a well. This means that someone could enter 7 times for a chance to win the book. At the end of the tour, a winner will be chosen and announced.
Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are prescribed ideals in America of 2050. The Moral Authority, the nation’s newest branch of government, has virtually eliminated crime, poverty, and most social ills, but it also rules the land with a tyrannical fist, championing ignorance and brandishing fear.
Mark Bryan is a gay man whose existence brands him an outlaw; Isaac Montoya is a charming stranger, who entices Mark to defy moral law; and Samuel Pleasant runs the Moral Authority and plans to punish moral offenders and a rebellious uprising—no matter the cost.
Will liberty and justice return for all?
As Mark drew closer to the Starbucks on 14th and Lavaca, dread once again crept along his spine like an army of spiders.
Moral code posters were everywhere. On every building wall or storefront display. All lampposts, trash cans, street signs, and mailboxes supported the same gruesome image of Uncle Sam.
Saggy, aged flesh framed a smile that radiated no warmth. His cold blue eyes looked more akin to sharks’ than humans’. Uncle Sam’s gaze pierced through flesh and peered into the soul, looking for the immorality hidden within as easily as a shark detected a drop of blood within the ocean. His demeanor was that of a top-tier predator, and his pointing finger was not only accusatory but also a sign that you might be his next prey.
As a child, he’d never understood why all the adults, his mother included, praised Uncle Sam so much or even why they referred to him as an uncle. No sense of family attachment connected him to the man with a crooked smile, who commanded moral obedience in the advertisements all around him. In fact, Uncle Sam was the subject of many of Mark’s childhood nightmares. In them, Uncle Sam entered his room, his finger pointing at him like a loaded gun and his smile hitched up at the right corner of his face. He hovered over Mark’s bed like a specter. And then it would happen.
In his dreams, Uncle Sam unhinged his lower jaw and turned into a human vacuum, sucking up everything that was distasteful inside his bloating body. Hamburgers, hotdogs, and candy flew from under Mark’s bed and disappeared within the gaping void of Uncle Sam’s mouth. Eventually, no matter how tightly he gripped onto his headboard, Mark soared through the air, straight for Uncle Sam’s yawning maw.
The memory of those dreams caused Mark to shiver even though the oppressive Texas sun beat down upon him. Walking past all these posters unnerved him as if he had been transported inside a nightmarish dreamscape where escaping Uncle Sam was impossible.
Uncle Sam’s eyes and smile lined the street in almost every direction, berating all who looked upon him into submission.
“Wonderful day today,” another government employee said to Mark as Mark walked by. He nodded in agreement, even though he disagreed. His day was wonderful until Uncle Sam ruined it.
REMEMBER THE MORAL CODE OF CARE. EAT RESPONSIBLY was now posted on the wall of what used to be Dan’s Liquor Store. It was now one of many health food shops where citizens purchased the food needed for their daily allowance.
Uncle Sam was obviously expressing his displeasure at Mark’s desire for a Frappuccino. That didn’t stop a sense of vindication from washing over him as he drew closer to the Starbucks.
MORAL CITIZENS ARE GOOD CITIZENS.
THE ROAD TO MORALITY IS PAVED WITH MODERATION.
THE MORAL LAW OF RESPECT KEEPS CITIZENS HAPPY.
MORALITY IS NOT AN OPTION.
BEING MORAL IS BEING AMERICAN.
Finally, Mark reached the front door of Starbucks. Once inside, he would be out of Uncle Sam’s line of sight. Before going in, however, he took one look back at the posters. Dozens of pairs of Uncle Sam eyeballs stared back, boring into his being and condemning him simply for existing.
Yeah, well, fuck you too, Mark said within the safety of his own thoughts. He then entered Starbucks and slammed the door shut behind him.
You can buy Moral Authority here:
Become a part of Jacob Z. Flores’ social media, by visiting any of the following:
- Website/blog: http://jacobzflores.com
- Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jacob.flores2,
- Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/JacobZFlores,
- Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5142501.Jacob_Z_Flores
Jacob Z. Flores lives a double life. During the day, he is a respected college English professor and mid-level administrator. At night and during his summer vacation, he loosens the tie and tosses aside the trendy sports coat to write man on man fiction, where the hard ass assessor of freshmen level composition turns his attention to the firm posteriors and other rigid appendages of the characters in his fictional world.
Summers in Provincetown, Massachusetts, provide Jacob with inspiration for his fiction. The abundance of barely clothed man flesh and daily debauchery stimulates his personal muse. When he isn’t stroking the keyboard, Jacob spends time with his husband, Bruce, their three children, and two dogs, who represent a bright blue blip in an otherwise predominantly red swath in south Texas.
You can follow Jacob’s musings on his blog at http://jacobzflores.com or become a part of his social media network by visiting http://www.facebook.com/jacob.flores2, http://twitter.com/#!/JacobZFlores, or http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5142501.Jacob_Z_Flores.
Here are the giveaway details. Please remember to use Rafflecopter to enter Jacob’s giveaway! The contest ends June 3rd.