Love Bytes says hello and welcome to author Layla Dorine joining us today for her blog tour on newest release “Racing the Sky”.
Layla talks to us about her new book and shares an excerpt.
Welcome Layla 🙂
Hi and thank you so much for hosting me. I’m thrilled to be able to share some little tidbits about Racing the Sky today. Like with my previous novels, there was so much about this book that was personal to me. I love dirt bikes, I love to ride, though I’ve never been brave enough to try anything besides some low jumps. I also love cooking, and for me, spending time with someone in the kitchen is not only a great way to get to know them but a great way to build ties and to cultivate relationships.
Growing up, I spent a ton of time in my grandmother’s kitchen, listening to stories about her life and others in our family, as well as listening to her and my great aunts talking about the state of affairs in the city we were living in. Having Gray share food with Nicky, having them cook together, and allowing Gray to teach Nicky how to cook from scratch was a way to honor those memories and the sense that I’ve always gotten when I’ve been in the kitchen working with someone else.
It’s not just the interactions and the conversations, but the actual intimacy there, moving around one another, stretching to reach the spices, spinning to grab the oil, a little dance of tangled limbs when you reach for the sugar at the same time. Food can be sensual, cooking together can be romantic, and giving Nicky something to learn also gave him a chance to open up, to be vulnerable in a way that allowed Gray to see that he could fill more than just one place in Nicky’s life.
It also gave them something to build off of, a conversation topic that would be safe in those moments when emotions might have been too raw in regards to other things. I thought, belatedly, about putting a few of the recipes in the back of the book to share. Instead, they are available on my website in a newly added section that I hope to see grow as food and cooking have a way of weaving themselves into my stories as recurring themes.
Racing the Sky by Layla Dorine
When you race the sky, gravity always wins
Racing the Sky Blurb
Nicky dreamed of Cliffhangers, Suicide Cams and the Kiss of Death, wanting more than anything to make it to the professional motocross circuit and dazzle fans beneath the bright arena lights. His bike was his life, his world, especially after his boyfriend, Terry, dumped him for earning a sponsor when Terry couldn’t. It’s still devastating, being cheated on and cast aside by the only man he’s ever loved, but there’s little he can do about it now but go out there and win, if only to spite Terry.
Enter Gray, and a chance meeting at a roadside diner that leaves Nicky with something more to focus on than the Coffin and Lazy Boy and how impressive a backflip he can pull off at the end of the next event. As the sting of Terry’s betrayal begins to fade, Nicky finds himself drawn to the older man, returning to the diner, and Gray, in every free moment he can spare. It’s almost perfect, but nothing ever lasts, not in Nicky’s world and Terry isn’t quite done making him pay for his success.
In the aftermath, Gray is left helping Nicky pick up the pieces once again, only this time, nothing will ever be the same. Will Nicky be able to see beyond his dreams of twisting in the air and dangling from beneath his bike…. to learn that when you Race the Sky…gravity always wins?
The guy chuckled again. “I know that story, my friend. About three years back I came home to find my stuff on the lawn and a foreclosure sign outside. Guess there was a second mortgage I didn’t know about. I tossed most of the crap in the dumpster, packed my clothes and music in my trunk, and lived in my car for a while, until the owner sold the restaurant I was working at and the new management brought in their own people and a menu I couldn’t even pronounce. They turned it into some snazzy upscale thing, and me, I just started driving. Saw a ‘help wanted’ sign in the window when I stopped for gas and I’ve been here ever since.”
“Hopefully not still living in the same old car?”
“Nope, I have a trailer out back,” the guy said. “So, what happened that you’ve got no place to go back to?”
“I guess it isn’t that bad,” Nicky relented. “I mean, I’ve got a place to live, and I’ve got a job, even if I did just quit my day job this morning.”
“Ah, so it’s a woman then?” the man fished.
Nicky shook his head. “Not a woman.”
“Not a woman, but someone, ’cause I’m sensing that if it isn’t home and it isn’t work then a relationship tanked somewhere.”
Nicky looked down. “Yeah.”
“How long were you and he together?”
“Since high school.”
The man studied Nicky for a moment, a small smile on his face. “First and only relationship, huh?”
“Well, time heals all things, kid. Was with my guy for six years before I came home to that foreclosure sign. It don’t get any easier the older you get. It still sucks when it all blows up in your face.”
“Just wish he wouldn’t rub my nose in it every time I turn around.”
“He can only rub your nose in it if you let him,” the guy pointed out.
“I guess.” Nicky’s cell phone went off. He flipped it open to see the call was from Vic. With a sigh, he answered it.
“Your boss has been leaving messages all afternoon. Wanna tell me why you quit your job?” Vic asked.
“Christ, Nicky, what did Terry do?”
“Just drop it, Vic.”
“You know what, Nicky, fuck you. I’m trying to be your friend here, but you’re making it really fucking hard.”
“Just give me some space, Vic, please.”
“Fine, but if you end up drunk and bloody instead of coming home and dealing with shit here, I’m going to be pissed.”
“I hear ya.”
“Yeah, I do. Look, I’m up at a little diner. I’m not drunk. I’m not gonna drink. So just give me space; okay.”
Nicky slid his hand through his hair. “I will,” he said before hanging up.
Looking at the big man, who was watching him from the far end of the counter, Nicky gave a tense smile. “Could I, umm, have another slice of pie? Apple this time, please.”
The man laughed. “How about ice cream with that?”
“Sure. Maybe I’ll die of a sugar overdose.”
They were alone in the diner, save for the guy on the grill in the back.
“You know,” the man began, “there are some fun ways to burn off sugar, if you’re interested. I get off in an hour.”
Nicky shivered, partly in fear and partly in anticipation. He could say yes, easy. Hell, it wasn’t as if Terry had even waited for them to break up before he’d moved on to someone else. Still, Nicky had never been with anyone but Terry, and this was a stranger, even if he was friendly as hell.
“Think about it,” the guy said before he headed to the back.
LAYLA DORINE lives among the sprawling prairies of Midwestern America, in a house with more cats than people. She loves hiking, fishing, swimming, martial arts, camping out, photography, cooking, and dabbling with several artistic mediums. In addition, she loves to travel and visit museums, historic, and haunted places.
Layla got hooked on writing as a child, starting with poetry and then branching out, and she hasn’t stopped writing since. Hard times, troubled times, the lives of her characters are never easy, but then what life is? The story is in the struggle, the journey, the triumphs and the falls. She writes about artists, musicians, loners, drifters, dreamers, hippies, bikers, truckers, hunters and all the other folks that she’s met and fallen in love with over the years. Sometimes she writes urban romance and sometimes its aliens crash landing near a roadside bar. When she isn’t writing, or wandering somewhere outdoors, she can often be found curled up with a good book and a kitty on her lap.
Layla Dorine can be found at:
Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100005197938547&fref=ts Twitter: https://twitter.com/layladorine
Author Website: layladorine13.wix.com/layladorineauthor
Author on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9814124.Layla_Dorine