Hi everyone! I’m Vanessa North, and I’m touring this week to talk about my new release, Double Up: how it got started, a scene that almost happened, and the sport of wakeboarding--how it influenced me, why I love it so much, and how it shaped the characters in the story.
Join me on the tour and leave a comment on this post to enter the giveaway for a $15 Riptide Gift Card! Be sure to include your email address in the comment so that I can contact you if you win! I'll be drawing the winner at the end of the blog tour.
Double Up by Vanessa North
Title ~ Double Up
Author ~ Vanessa North
Publisher ~ Riptide Publishing
Published ~ 25th August 2014
Genre ~ M/M Contemporary Romance
Knowing he’s loved can make any man fly.
Fifteen years ago, Ben Warren was a wakeboarding champion: king of big air, ballsy tricks, and boned grabs. Until a career-ending injury left him broken in ways he still has no hope of fixing. Now he takes his thrills where he can get them, and tries not to let life hurt too much.
Then Davis Fox arrives in Ben’s sporting goods store with a plan to get in touch with his estranged brother by competing in the annual wakeboarding double-up contest. The catch? He’s never ridden before. It’s crazy, but Ben’s a sucker for the guy’s sob story—and for his dimples, too—so he agrees to coach Davis.
Davis is everything Ben isn’t: successful, confident, and in love with life. And he wants Ben to love life—and him—too. But before Ben can embrace a future with Davis, he needs to remember how to hope.
I REALLY enjoyed this novella from Vanessa North for a lot of reasons. First of all it was a book that I read in one sitting, not because of its length but because I connected with it pretty much from the word go, which actually is strange for me because it's written in a style that isn't normally a favourite of mine, first person-present tense... I think that's how you class it? Anyway, it's not a style I usually enjoy but there was something about all the characters in this that drew me in straight away. Especially Ben Warren and Davis Fox, the two main guys and love interests in the story. Although Bens best mate, flamboyant Queen, Eddie really had me as soon as we met him, on his boat, dressed in his skimpy speedos and giving sass! I have to say I loved him big style but I also loved Ben's 'voice' and it was obvious that as soon as the gorgeous Davis walked into 'Legend Wakeboards', his pro shop, there was going to be some cracking chemistry going on between the older, slightly washed out ex-champion Wakeboarder and the young rich guy who's obviously hadn't seen a board never mind rode one before. But wants lessons so he can enter an upcoming competition where he's hoping to get closer to Ridley, the teenage half-brother he hasn't seen for years, a youngster who is actually an awesome Wakeboarder and the rising star to watch.
The sexual tension sparked on page, just how I like it, and the complete storyline was engaging too. It was nice to see a more mature guy as one of the MC's, although being in my mid-fifties, 40 still seemed pretty young! Lol. Sort of a toy boy for me. Haha!
Because of his background in extreme sports, Ben doesn't come over as stuffy...pissed off at times yes, because of the circumstances that ended his career ...but never staid or old at heart. In fact really of the two of them, it's Davis who comes over as the most enlightened and 'grown up'. There's a ten year age difference, which bothers Ben at first, more than it bothers Davis but the thing that really interferes with their budding romance is Bens inability to commit to any relationship. Understandable in a way when you finally learn more about the lasting consequences of his accident that overshadow his life, but still frustrating at times because of his pig headedness in not trusting Davis' feelings for him enough to let himself give in to what he really wants but feels he can't give. Bloody stubborn man!
"...I've been alone. I had boyfriends yeah, but I didn't have family. And I never had anyone I cared about like you. It's only been a few weeks, so it feels like maybe it's just drama, but it's not drama Ben. It's not drama for me, it's building something together. Let me be nice to you, because I need family too, okay?"
Then there's the Wakeboarding itself...not a sport I know a lot about but I found the scenes set around it really exciting and could almost picture them in my mind so that was pretty good for someone who'd never particularly seen it in action. (Showing my age again...). So I think Vanessa got that part of the story across brilliantly...the atmosphere and the tricks well described and represented.
The love scenes are absolutely delicious. Vanessa North gave me some fair old goosebumps during those. The chemistry and connection between them when they're in love mode is just awesome, I really did get those tummy flips but I also felt the emotion between them too, and overall it was a great journey even though they have to go through some angst and conflict before they finally get to the place that I know everyone will be cheering them on to, and when they arrive there it's so satisfying. Happy face ending! Great story, great romance, great supporting cast and one I'll definitely revisit again.
Buy it Here
The Top Five Sexual Innuendos in Wakeboarding
“OMG!” I screeched to my author bestie (if one can do such a thing over IM), “I’m going to write an M/M wakeboarding story and call it Double Up! Because, innuendo!”
Author bestie, AKA author Liza Gaines, being both the angel and the devil on my shoulder, encouraged me shamelessly. I started rattling off all the sexual innuendos in wakeboarding terms, and she just kept giving me those smiley faces, you know the ones: :D :D :D
And that’s how Double Up began. While I couldn’t use all the innuendos in the book, I still had a good time trying. From my notes, I give you my favorites—and what they really mean in wakeboarding terms!
5. Double Up—the innuendo of this is probably obvious, but what is a Double Up anyway? It’s when a wakeboat crosses over its own wake at a 90 degree angle, causing the two wakes to collide, creating a huge wake and an opportunity to get bigger air—more time in the air allows for bigger tricks.
4. Stiffy—no, we’re not talking erections here. A stiffy is when a grab is performed with the board out flat in front of the rider.
3. Hoochie Glide—This one just sounds pretty filthy, but it’s basically just an Air Raley (the first trick Ben performs to impress Davis) with the board grabbed between the feet heelside.
2. Whirlydick—not the much lauded blowjob technique we see in M/M romance, but rather a cross between an invert (flip) and a spin that includes a handle pass during the spin.
1. Backside Butterslide—the latest in flavored lubes? Thankfully, no. A backside butterslide is when the rider slides on the top of the wake with his or her back turned to the boat.
About the Author
Author of over a dozen novels, novellas, and short stories, Vanessa North delights in giving happy-ever-afters to characters who don’t think they deserve them. Relentless curiosity led her to take up knitting and run a few marathons “just to see if she could.” She started writing for the same reason. Her very patient husband pretends not to notice when her hobbies take over the house. Living and writing in Northwest Georgia, she finds her attempts to keep a quiet home are frequently thwarted by twin boy-children and a very, very large dog.
Connect with Vanessa:
· Website: vanessanorth.com
· Facebook profile page: facebook.com/AuthorVanessaNorth
· Twitter: @VanessaNWrites
· Goodreads: goodreads.com/VanessaNorth
Leave a comment on this post to enter the giveaway for a $15 Riptide Gift Card! Be sure to include your email address in the comment so that I can contact you if you win! I'll be drawing the winner at the end of the blog tour.