Welcome to this week’s installment of Rainbowsnippets*! This one is uniquely mine, but there are lots of other great snippets to read, so after you finish here click the FB link at the bottom of the post to discover other great LGBTQIA authors and their works.
I’m sharing again from Cleaning House. The novel is an Appalachian-set Contemporary/ Paranormal Fantasy where the past and the present are blended with a healthy dose of granny magic. The mountains are alive, and a little moonshine can cure what ails you.
It’s four days until the release, and I’m stoked! I have a two-week blog tour scheduled, several other sites I’ll be featured on, a podcast I’m visiting… the list keeps growing.
On to the snippet.
This one contains mildly questionable language, so you’re warned.
The Setup: Cent’s on her way to work at a local bodega when she runs into her friend Betty sitting on their apartment building’s stoop. Betty’s now walking Cent to work both for companionship and for safety. Their neighborhood isn’t exactly the best. (Note: The section in yellow comes from last week’s snippet.)
Betty’s only customer, a sailor new out of Great Lakes Recruit Training, had been more interested in looking at her package than any delivery of goods.
“You’d think he’d never seen a dick before.” Betty’s laugh turned bitter. “He couldn’t get it up for the longest time then as soon as I got a condom on him, the cork popped. Easy money.”
“Probably his first time.” Cent patted Betty’s hand. “Poor kid.”
“He knew what he was getting into, so…” Betty’s nicotine breath fanned across Cent’s neck. “You off this afternoon?”
I think Betty’s tired of it all, don’t you? I actually have a lot of thoughts concerning sex workers, about how mentally exhausting it must be. No wonder they’re often jaded. Who wouldn’t be?
Centenary Rhodes is an old soul with a well-traveled name, but she doesn’t know this yet.
Growing up in southern Appalachia wasn’t easy, so Cent left home as soon as she could, but the post-collegiate happiness she’d expected has never occurred. She can’t find a decent date, much less find that special someone and, after losing her job in a corporate downsize, she’s struggling to meet her most basic needs. Her car has been repossessed, her bills are piling up, and her questionable North Chicago neighborhood is dangerous to navigate.
Returning home to Hare Creek, Tennessee, never crosses Cent’s mind until her Great Aunt Tess contacts her with an offer she can’t refuse. The family’s southern Appalachian homestead must be sold, and Aunt Tess needs someone to clean it up. Cent will have access to Aunt Tess’ garden and truck and can live on the homestead rent-free for as long as it takes. A part-time job is waiting for her as well.
It’s a chance to solve some of Cent’s financial woes, but will her return be enough when evil sets its sights on Embreeville Mountain and the homestead?
Cleaning House is a carefully woven Appalachian tapestry of granny magic, haints, elementals, and the fantastic diversity of the human condition – served with a delicious side of fries and a generous quart of peach moonshine.
The Meet the Characters series post for Cent was published yesterday, and there’s one from Betty on the same page from 7/9. Both posts go a long way toward creating a full picture of each character. It’s a multimedia approach on my part, a song, a collage, a description, and a quote… combined to introduce each character in Cleaning House. One post for each character.
Ready to read more from Cleaning House? You can do so HERE and/or pre-order the ebook version HERE or at other online book retailers. There’s a link to the print version on the same page if you’d druther.
*RainbowSnippets is a safe and welcoming space for LGBTQIA+ authors, readers, and bloggers to share 6 sentences each week from a work of fiction—published or in-progress—or a book recommendation. Feel free to join in!