It’s fair to say I rarely do cover reveals. So rare that today’s post may actually be my first one.
Two, no, three reasons actually:
- Firstly, I love Sarina Bowen‘s covers for her Ivy Years series (shallow, but sadly true) – I love the striking simplicity of the cover designs and the cohesive series feel
- More seriously, I’ve read and enjoyed the first two full-length novels in her series – they’re inter-connected stories (with different protagonists) in a college setting. I think I’ve talked before about how NA books were all starting to blend into one for me, and her books feel different – she doesn’t shy away from tackling tough issues, and they’re not the standard run-of-the-mill issues you find in NA books. The first book, THE YEAR WE FELL DOWN, has Corey dealing with the life-changing results of a sports injury, while Scarlett has serious reasons for creating a new life for herself in THE YEAR WE HID AWAY. I also have major love for the Harkness (a thinly-disguised Yale) college setting and the sports elements in these books (ice hockey, if you’re curious).
- Finally, it’s an M/M new adult book – how rare is that? (Possibly less rare than my cover reveals.)
So without further ado, here’s the cover for THE UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE YEAR, out Oct 1:
What happened in high school stayed in high school. Until now.
Five years ago, Michael Graham betrayed the only person who ever really knew him. Since then, he’s made an art of hiding his sexual preference from everyone. Including himself.
So it’s a shock when his past strolls right into the Harkness College locker room, sporting a bag of hockey gear and the same slow smile that had always rendered Graham defenseless. For Graham, there is only one possible reaction: total, debilitating panic. With one loose word, the team’s new left wing could destroy Graham’s life as he knows it.
John Rikker is stuck being the new guy. Again. And it’s worse than usual, because the media has latched onto the story of the only “out” player in Division One hockey. As the satellite trucks line the sidewalk outside the rink, his new teammates are not amused.
And one player in particular looks sick every time he enters the room.
Rikker didn’t exactly expect a warm welcome from Graham. But the guy won’t even meet his eyes. From the looks of it, his former… best friend / boyfriend / whatever isn’t doing so well. He drinks too much and can’t focus during practice.
Either the two loneliest guys on the team will self destruct from all the new pressures in their lives, or they can navigate the pain to find a way back to one another. To say that it won’t be easy is the Understatement of the Year.
Warning: unlike the other books in this series, this heartbreaking love story is about two guys. Contains sexual situations, dance music, snarky t-shirts and a poker-playing grandmother.
A few Q&As about the series/book:
Q: Is Harkness College from the Ivy Years series based on Yale?
A: Heck yes! But it’s based on a Yale which has gone soft and fuzzy in my mind, in all the best ways. So I’ve fictionalized it to avoid the errors and inaccuracies that I’d be likely to make if I tried to get everything just right.
Q: Why did you decide to write a book about two guys?
A: In the first place, I didn’t really decide, so much as the idea for Graham’s struggle surgically implanted itself in my brain and would not let go. And when I pictured the two of them meeting up again in a locker room after five years of silence, I just got the chills. This became the book that I cheated on all my other books to write. (If my editors of other projects are reading this… sorry! I’ll get back to work now. Probably.)
Q: Why college hockey?
A. Because… duh! Hockey players are hot. And hockey is a fast-paced game where whining is categorically disallowed. Interestingly, fighting is not legal in college hockey, either. It’s all about the game. I love that!
Q: How many Ivy Years books do you have planned?
A: Five, if you’re counting the novella. After Rikker and Graham’s book, Bella is going to need her own book. What, you haven’t met Bella yet? You will on October 1st, when Understatement of the Year is published. She is a kick-ass chick in much the same way as Corey, Scarlet and Katie. You’ll love her. You can read a bit more about all the titles on The Ivy Years page on my website.
And if you’ve made it this far, there’s a tour-wide giveaway for the cover reveal of THE UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE YEAR. You can win a signed set of paperback books which includes: The Year We Fell Down (Ivy Years #1), The Year We Hid Away (Ivy Years #2) and Blonde Date (Ivy Years 2.5). The giveaway is open internationally.
Finally – I’ve read an ARC of THE UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE YEAR and will post a review closer to the release date, but it’s a good one.
This cover reveal is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours.