The toughest ride of his life is all in his head.
Bull rider Scott Gillard has a reputation for quick fists and harsh words. What no one knows is where that anger comes from. After a shocking incident sends him into a tailspin, he knows he needs help: he’s been fighting a battle he could never win. Now he's trying navigate a new life and embrace his true self, but some days are easier than others.
Pickup man Cory Ackerson has suffered his share of harassment, but his light still burns bright. He doesn’t let anything or anyone keep him down, so when he meets the rugged cowboy with a battered chip on his shoulder and regret in his dark eyes, all he wants to do is help.
As their unlikely friendship grows into something deeper, Scott must overcome his past to be the man Cory deserves, or lose his best chance at his own happily ever after.
G’day everyone! Welcome to my Pulling Leather blog tour and a peek into the world of rodeo
cowboys. (The official schedule can be found here.) This wouldn’t be a proper tour without some
prezzies, of course, so read on for giveaway details. Thank you for kicking off my new tour, and to
all of you for hopping in the saddle to ride along!
An excerpt from Pulling Leather (read more here)
Two years earlier . . .
Scott squeezed the steering wheel until the bones in his hands were about to bust through the skin. His jaw ached from clenching it so hard, but he couldn’t leave his truck yet. He didn’t want to be seen. His eyes had begun to sting from staring so intensely at the empty Ford F-150 parked near the exit of the rodeo grounds as he waited for its owner.
Most people had already cleared out, and there were only a few vehicles and equine rigs remaining. Those who wanted to revel a little longer with friends they wouldn’t see again until next season. Finally, a lone form appeared from behind one of the rigs, heading his way. Through narrowed eyes, he tracked the reason he was trying—trying so hard—not to blow up and destroy everything in his path.
Tripp Colby, a man he’d been good friends with for the last three years, a fellow bull rider he’d come to think of as a brother, a man he thought he could trust, turned out to be one of them. A fucking homo. And he’d had to find out about it secondhand.
How could that be true? How could he have not known? Tripp didn’t look gay, and he sure as hell didn’t act gay. Nothing about the cowboy was anything short of “macho manly man.” He couldn’t reconcile that with being gay in his mind. Which meant it had to be a lie. A sick joke. That was the only explanation that made sense.
Except that he’d read the breaking news on the Professional Bull Riders website, when he’d bolted to the nearest internet café to confirm the hushed rumblings he’d heard all day. He’d read it in Tripp’s own words, right there in flickering black and fucking white. Gay. No wonder Tripp had avoided him all day. Scott had never been one to hold back his opinions as to what made a man, and it sure as hell wasn’t two of them doing each other.
But the ultimate betrayal came when he’d read on and learned Tripp’s father had owned that fucking useless center in North Carolina. Did Tripp know Scott had been there? That they hadn’t been able to fix him?
Cure the gay away, my fucking ass.
This is the third book in a series that should be read in order, or the struggles that the main character in this story faces won't make a lick of sense!
Scott Gillard has worked hard to overcome the demons of his past, he's still working at it on a daily basis. When he goes to visit Marty and Trip (read the series in order!) to make amends, Trip offers to help Scott put his money where is mouth is, so to speak. Scott is hesitant, he fears the rejection and backlash that will come from him showing his face around the men he so openly hated not long ago. But in the end, he relents, he has to atone for his sins some way, and right now helping Trip with his gay Rodeo circuit seems to be the best way.
Scott is welcomed with a mixture of emotions. Hate, anger, distrust and nervousness. But there is one guy that sees something more in Scott than even Scott himself sees. Cory Ackerson wears his sexuality like a badge, waving his flag high and proud. It's caused him to be harassed and even picked on by others in the circuit on occasion. Scott knows he should not get involved with the adorable, fun loving, free spirited cowboy; even Cory's older brother warns Scott off. But Cory is relentless in his pursuit of the guarded Bull Rider.
Scott really is at war with his emotions though, and the last thing he wants to do is hurt the one person that has shown unearned faith in him. But the road to hell is paved with good intentions as they say. It takes loosing Cory for Scott to finally realize just how much he needs the young, spry Pickup man. Will a confession of sorts be enough to pull these two back together?
I love how Chase approaches each story, each relationship through a different set of eyes. In Pulling Leather, she has taken a less than likeable character from a previous book and given him a reason to change, given gravity to the past and the pain he endured that made him react the way he did early on. Bullying is a normal reaction to being bullied, I've seen it happen myself. Scott reacted a certain way to cover up his own sexuality after being victimized himself in a way as a teenager. Doesn't make it better, but it offers an explanation none the less.
This book also offers further insight into exactly what happened that night when Trip was beaten and left at the hospital. You find out what you assumed happened, may not have been the truth after all. These guys in the rodeo are a close knit group of friends, brothers basically, and they stick together. For the most part they rally behind Scott as he earns their trust and shows them he's trying to change, he slowly becomes one of them. And the love story between Scott and Cory is very slow simmering, sensual, sweet and almost innocent. It's written and conveyed that way, and it made perfect sense for the characters. Scott is still dealing with a lot of emotional baggage, so to have him jump head long into a full on sex charged relationship with a guy wouldn't have been believable. So I'm glad Chase chose to tone down the romance with these two. There is still some steam, don't get me wrong, but it's more low key than the other stories in this series.
This is a must read series for fans of Cowboy Romance, with some bulls and spurs thrown in the mix.
Artist by day, author by night, L.C. Chase is a hopeless romantic and adventure seeker. After a decade of road tripping on three continents, she now calls the Canadian West Coast home.
When not writing tales of beautiful men falling love, L.C. can be found designing book covers of said beautiful men, reading, drawing, running the trails with her goofy four-legged buddy who, if he were human, would be a stand-up comedian, and
fighting her root
Connect with L.C.:
· Website: lcchase.com
· Blog: lcchase.blogspot.com
· Twitter: @lc_chase
· Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
· Goodreads: goodreads.com/LC_Chase
In celebration of the release of Pulling Leather, and as s thankyou,
I’m offering goodies for two lucky readers . . .
1 COWBOYS IN PIXELS: One ebook copy of any title in my backlist. Open to worldwide
2 COWBOYS IN PRINT: One signed paperback copy of Long Tall Drink, the extended edition,
Pickup Men or Let It Ride. Open to worldwide entries.