Today I am so pleased to welcome JP Barnaby to Joyfully Jay. JP is here to talk to us about her latest release, A Heart for Robbie. She has also brought along a a character interview, an excerpt, and a great giveaway! Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
Interview with Liam and Clay
Today, we’re going to have a bit of an unconventional interview. I’ll be interviewing the imaginary friends of my imaginary friend. So, we have reality twice removed. Liam and Clay are two of the major characters in Julian Holmes’s Black Heart Series. Julian Holmes is the protagonist of A Heart for Robbie, the new novel from JP Barnaby about a gay author desperate to save his newborn son. While the story centers around Julian and Robbie, Julian’s isolation causes him to spend a lot of time in conversation with Liam.
JP: Hi Julian, thank you for coming to talk with me. How’s Robbie?
Julian: Hey, JP. I love talking to you. Robbie is holding his own. He’s out of the hospital, but without a new heart, there’s really nothing we can do.
JP: I’m sorry. I know this is no consolation, but I know how you feel.
Julian: I know you do.
JP: So, is Liam around? How about Clay? Can we talk with them for a bit? It’s not often I get to interview the imaginary friends of an imaginary friend.
Liam: Why do people keep calling me imaginary?
Julian: Because they can’t see you.
Liam: Oh. Well, that’s kind of a shame, cause I’m hot.
Julian: Yes, well, Eve certainly thinks so, at least in a 17-year-old girl kind of way.
Clay: Are we just going to talk about him?
Julian: No Clay, we can talk about you too.
Clay: Sweet, when am I going to get a book? Everyone else got a book? You get mail all the time asking for a book for me. I WANT A BOOK.
Julian: Clay, you know you have an inside voice, right? Especially when you’re inside my head?
Clay: I’m not inside your head. I’m right here on this chair.
Julian: The answer is, your book is next. I’ve been trying to work on it for a couple weeks now, but with everything going on with Robbie, it just… well, it hasn’t worked.
Clay: The little guy is going to be okay, Julian. Someone is writing your story too, just like you’re writing mine and Liam’s stories. They wouldn’t do that to you.
Julian: Is he right?
JP: Have you told him the ending of his book?
Clay: Oh shit, you’re not going to kill me are you?
Julian: I can’t tell you how the book will end because it will affect the way you tell me about your life. You’ll make different decisions because you already know the outcome. That’s why she can’t tell me if my son lives.
Clay whispers to JP: You can tell me, right?
JP laughs quietly to herself and closes the laptop.
Until then, let’s check out an excerpt from Julian’s book (Manifestations) featuring Liam and Clay. It also happens to be the prologue from JP’s book, A Heart for Robbie.
From Manifestations, Book One of the Black Heart series by Julian Holmes
Liam Black crouched outside the barn, its faded paint cracking and peeling under his fingers as he peeked around the corner toward the door. The demon he’d been chasing had not made a reappearance. Moving fast and low, he sprinted for the door and found it odd that no other manifestations were around to hinder his progress. A low voice in the back of his mind, harsh and insistent, told him he was walking into a trap, but he couldn’t stop. He wouldn’t walk away and leave Eve in their hands. She might have been the cause of the manifestations, she might be a conniving witch, but she made his skin tingle by the mere thought of her. One kiss and he would lose himself. Okay, yeah, that sounds totally lame, but it’s all about the romance, right?
The door opened silently on well-oiled hinges. The barn wasn’t as decrepit as someone wanted it to appear. With light steps, he followed the wall in the pitch-black darkness. Night had not yet fallen, but no light found its way into the barn. He tripped over something lying on the floor, something warm and rather soft. Using the display from his phone for just an instant, he illuminated his stumbling block. Clay’s eyes were closed, and a gash on his head poured blood over his ashen face. Liam checked his pulse. Still alive.
He continued on because the only way to save Clay, to save Eve, was to defeat the darkness growing in that place. No sound broke the silence inside the barn, no squeak of mice, no creak of wood, nothing. It was almost as if sound didn’t exist, as if light didn’t exist. The darkness swallowed him.
Slowly, painfully, Liam made his way around the edges of the world, stumbling blindly, until a light appeared in a crack underneath a door. He didn’t think he’d gone all the way around. Judging by his location, he determined that the door lay on the back wall of the barn. It should have led to the outside, but somehow, Liam didn’t think it did.
He swore as something smacked into his forehead. Liam brought the phone up and had the flashlight app on before he could blink. A shovel hung from a hook in one of the low rafters. Taking advantage of the light, he did a quick sweep of his surroundings. Empty. The lit doorway stood just feet from him. He took the last few steps at a jog and threw open the door.
Nothing, except a stairway down.
Waiting for someone else’s child to die so yours can live is the worst kind of Hell.
Celebrated Young Adult author Julian Holmes pits the heroic characters in his Black Heart series against all different kinds of monsters. But when a critical heart defect threatens his son’s life, he finds he has no champion. No amount of books, classes, or practice can prepare Julian for the fight to save his beautiful son’s life
Suddenly there are hospitals, transplant lists, and the nightmare of insurance red tape to navigate. In the midst of his trouble, Julian meets Simon Phelps, the insurance coordinator for Robbie’s case. Simon lives so deep in the closet he might never find his way out, but he dreams of exactly what Julian has. Then one night, drunken need and desperation brings them together, and a new fight begins.
Award winning romance novelist, J. P. Barnaby has penned over a dozen books including the Working Boys series, the Little Boy Lost series, In the Absence of Monsters, and Aaron. As a bisexual woman, J.P. is a proud member of the GLBT community both online and in her small town on the outskirts of Chicago. A member of Mensa, she is described as brilliant but troubled, sweet but introverted, and talented but deviant. She spends her days writing software and her nights writing erotica, which is, of course, far more interesting. The spare time that she carves out between her career and her novels is spent reading about the concept of love, which, like some of her characters, she has never quite figured out for herself.
J.P. has brought a $10 gift card to All Romance eBooks to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Monday, July 21st at 11:59 pm EST.
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