Giveaway + Blog Tour: The Hockey Player's Heart by Jeff Adams & Will Knauss

Jeff Adams and Will Knauss are here today to talk about their new Dreamspun Desires novel, The Hockey Player's Heart. Be sure to check out our review of it here & don't miss out on the giveaway below!

Hi! Thanks to Boy Meets Boy for hosting us on the blog tour for The Hockey Player’s Heart. We’re excited to be here to talk about our book, which is our first collaboration on a novel. Part of Dreamspinner Press’s Dreamspun Desires line, it’s a feel-good, second chance romance between pro hockey player Caleb Carter and grade school teacher Aaron Price. When these two were in high school, and Aaron was tutoring Caleb, they had crushes on each other that they never admitted. It's only when Caleb comes home years later that they rediscover each other and go after their HEA.
In this book, Caleb is the out and proud captain of the New York Rangers. And he's not the only openly gay member of the team, as his best friend Dimitri Stanislov is out of the closet as well.
There are no openly gay athletes in the big four sports (football, baseball, basketball, hockey) in the US, so we wrote this book to represent the world as we want it to be. Athletes have always been a source of inspiration, especially for young people. Part of the books’ world is that there are out athletes at the top of their profession who can serve as role models.
The You Can Play Project was formed in 2012 to support inclusivity in all aspects of sports. Its motto is simple “If you can play... you can play." It's a powerful message for athletes who might be hesitant to be their authentic selves. Over the years they've recorded athletes across all levels of sport saying those words and spreading the word for inclusiveness.
These themes provide some of the backdrop for The Hockey Player’s Heart. Caleb is fully aware that his talent and success in professional hockey make him a role model and provide him with a platform to share his message of inclusivity.
We look to the day where all athletes--and really all people--are allowed to be open and honest about their identity without fear of repercussions. Until then, we’re grateful for the role models that are out there, as well as the opportunity to create them in our books.
Below is a brief excerpt, set at the school fundraiser, where Caleb and Aaron talk about an interaction he just had with some students.
Make sure you also check out the Rafflecopter because we’re giving away an e-book copy at each tour stop plus there's a grand prize of an autographed paperback for a US winner or a $10 Amazon e-gift card for an international winner. Make sure to check out all the stops to maximize your chance to win.
We hope you enjoy The Hockey Player's Heart and would love to hear what you think. If you read it, please consider leaving a review on your favorite site or dropping us a comment on one of our websites.


“Is it strange seeing your face on merchandise, like that toy of Terry’s?”

“It’s strange at first, but you get used to it, I guess.”

As one of the few out-and-proud players in the NHL, Aaron knew how significant it was that Caleb was so beloved by his fans and sought after by companies for merchandising and sponsorship deals.

“I’ve never known anyone who’s had a doll made in their likeness.”

“That’s not a doll,” Caleb emphasized. “That was a one-sixth scale, collector’s edition, premium action figure. The league did a series of them last year.”

Caleb certainly wasn’t a preening, macho sports star, but Aaron found his insistence on the precise masculine terminology for an NHL doll amusing. He couldn’t resist giving his old friend a hard time.

“It sure looked like a doll to me,” Aaron teased. “In fact, if we went back to your parent’s house right now and dug around in Pam’s old bedroom closet, we’d find a box full of Barbies who’d just love to go on a dream date with that miniature version of you.”

“Well, as long as Malibu Ken came along, I’d be okay with that.”

Aaron couldn’t help himself—he laughed out loud. Caleb chuckled as well.

“In all seriousness,” Aaron continued, “Thank you for taking the time to talk to those kids. I know it meant a lot to them.”

Caleb waved it off as if it were no big deal. “When I was their age, I met Gideon Roark after a game. His team and coach were trying to hurry him along to get on the bus, but he stopped, signed a puck, and talked to me for a few minutes. Dad was with me, and even he said we needed to let him go, but Roark continued to talk and even offered some face-off tips. I still have the puck, and because of him, I always take time for kids. Sort of a ‘pay it forward.’”

Hometown hero. Hockey superstar. Perfect boyfriend?

When hockey star Caleb Carter returns to his hometown to recover from an injury, the only thing he’s interested in is a little R & R. He never expects to run into his onetime crush at a grade school fund-raiser . Seeing Aaron Price hits him hard, like being checked into the boards. The attraction is still there, even after all these years, and Caleb decides to make a play for the schoolteacher. You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take, right?

Aaron has been burned by love before and can’t imagine what a celebrity like Caleb could possibly see in a guy like him. Their differences are just too great. But as Aaron spends more time with Caleb, he begins to wonder if he might have what it takes to win the hockey player’s heart.

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Jeff Adams and Will Knauss are husbands, authors, and podcasters based in Northern California. They write gay romances, sometimes together and other times separately. Jeff also writes young adult LGBT fiction. Together they host Jeff & Will's Big Gay Fiction Podcast, a weekly show devoted to gay romance literature and the pop culture they love.


Enter for your chance to win an autographed copy of The Hockey Player's Heart OR a $10 Amazon Gift Card! Giveaway ends January 28th. Good luck!

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