Hello everyone and Happy Thanksgiving to my U.S. folks! Today I am very excited to welcome author EM Lynley to the blog. EM is here to talk to us more about her newest release in the Precious Gems series, Jaded. She has also brought a great giveaway for you guys. So welcome EM!
Jaded, A Dream Come True
My newest novel JADED is finally here!
I’m so thrilled about this particular release.
I’ll explain my use of “particular” with a true confession: Very often, by the time a book comes out, the author has been through more rounds of edits and galley readings than we would like, and we’ve written half a dozen other pieces in the meantime. The actual release day feels almost anti-climactic. We work hard to pump up our enthusiasm to engage readers and reviewers, but many of us just want to get back to what we are writing at the moment.
However, JADED is different. This is one of the books I wanted to write for a very long time. I am a huge, HUGE fan of mysteries, and while I’ve ready thousands, I never felt confident enough to write a true murder mystery. Until now my stories have had mystery elements, but not what I would call an “official” mystery. I decided it was time to give it a try, even though I wasn’t sure I was good enough to pull it off. (still crossing fingers on that). I hope you’ll find it works.
Second: I lived in Japan for five years. I worked for an international bank and did economic research on Asian financial markets. I had learned Japanese in college and studied the history, politics, and economics of Japan (historical and modern) and was so thrilled to finally get to work there. It was an incredible experience. Every single day was new, exciting, sometimes frustrating, but absolutely never ever dull. I met so many wonderful people, visited beautiful places, even learned to scuba dive off the Izu Peninsula (where Trent and Reed go in Jaded), and visited more hot springs than I could count.
It took me at least a year to get over reverse culture shock when I moved back to California. I missed everything about Japan, from seaweed on pizza to rice vending machines to the beautiful little temples dotted all over ultra-urban Tokyo, even the crowded subways (still better than a 30-mile drive in rush-hour traffic).
I wanted to share these experiences with you. Like the other Precious Gems series books, I brought Trent and Reed to places in the world I absolutely love, so I could bring you along on the journey. I hope you’ve enjoyed the change to travel and see some incredible new things almost as if you are there.
Another fun thing about this book was making a few real people into characters. There’s a real Sam Kobayashi, a Nishikatsu, and absolutely a very real Shindo. In fact, they are all men I dated while living in Japan. I may write another blog just about that one day! There is also a real Motofuji. He was one of my Japanese professors at UC Berkeley. I loved the man. He was such a sweet person who made third-year Japanese a pleasure instead of a terror (like one of the other instructors). I discovered he recently passed away and felt a real sense of loss, though I hadn’t spoken to him for many years. While his character in Jaded is a Yakuza leader, I’ve made him a very old-fashioned and extraordinary man who has many of the same fine character traits in my Motofuji.
Not only did I included Japanese friends as characters, one of my readers, Christopher Hammel, makes an appearance in this book! Christopher asked me quite emphatically if he could be in the book, so he plays a role I think of as Reed’s Agent Coulson. He knows just how to get whatever Reed needs and has contacts all over Japan. He helps save the day.
I hope you’ll enjoy reading JADED even half as much as I enjoyed planning and writing it. I would love to hear your thoughts, so leave a comment, or send me an email.
Here’s more about JADED:
It’s book 3 in the Precious Gems series, and to get the most enjoyment, I suggest you read them in order. While the plots do not connect, the character development and relationship progression is very important.
Gay-romance writer Trent Copeland finds his life in a rut while his boyfriend, Special Agent Reed Acton, is away on an undercover mission. After attending a special course at FBI headquarters in Quantico, Trent’s eager for another challenge. He jumps at the opportunity for a trip to Japan to oversee appraisals of two art collections to be sold at the gallery he co-owns. But the trip isn’t all cherry blossoms and Hello Kitty. When one of the collectors he meets—rumored to be the head of a Yakuza gang—turns up dead, Trent is accused of the murder and thrown in jail.
Reed drops everything to help find out who really committed the crime. He’s in unknown territory in Japan, forced to navigate Tokyo’s sex underworld to unravel the truth and save Trent. He poses as a “host” at a seedy late-night club. When Reed’s undercover activities place him at a ruthless Yakuza leader’s sex party, he must be willing to go to any lengths to secure Trent’s safety and freedom. But trusting the wrong people brings both Reed and Trent to the Yakuza leader’s attention. If they’re ever to have a happy ever after, they’ll first have to call on every skill just to stay alive.
E.M. is offering up the winner’s choice of an e-book of Rarer than Rubies or Italian Ice, the first two books in the Precious Gems series. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. And if you want to comment with a place and a precious gem suggestion for a future story, EM would love to hear your ideas! The contest closes on Sunday, December 1st at 11:59 pm EST.
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