Monday, August 3, 2015

Blog Tour + Review + Excerpt + Giveaway: Curve Ball by Sloan Johnson

Title: Curve Ball
Series: Homeruns
Author: Sloan Johnson
Genre: M/M Romance
Publish Date: July 29, 2015
Review Source: eARC

Jason Klein’s living with the fallout from a decision he knew was the right one at the time. He never told anyone about the love of his life, which left him to mourn alone when he found out the man he gave his heart to had been killed in combat. Now, his heart has had time to heal, but he’s not sure he’s ready to let himself move on. Until he meets Cam Morgan…
Without a job lined up following graduation, Cam Morgan took his best friend up on his offer to move to Milwaukee and stay with him until he could get on his feet. The last thing he wanted to do the day after getting to town was go to a party filled with a bunch of jocks. Sure, they were “professional athletes” but Cam was convinced that bigger bank accounts didn’t make them any more accepting of people like him. He certainly didn’t expect to meet Jason, the Mavericks’ catcher who broke every stereotype he’d had. 
What started out as one hot, sweaty night together quickly grows into something deeper. Jason welcomes Cam into his home and his life, but now he has to teach the younger man that it’s not a sign of weakness to let people help you.

Sometime when you least expect it, you run into that one person who changes your life in ways you never thought would be possible.  They give you a second chance to find what you never truly knew you were missing.

When Cameron Morgan agreed to move in with his best friend Drew, he was a bit unsure at first.  Knowing that Drew was a professional baseball player, and having endured enough harassment from athletes, he was unsure what he was walking into.  But, Drew was determined to involve him in the life that he was leading and refused to let anything happen to Cam.  What he didn't expect was to find out about another teammate being gay.

Jason Klein has managed to keep his sexual preferences unknown to almost all of his teammates other than a select few.  When her arrives at a cookout and spots Cam getting a dish out of his teammates car he is taken back by the handsome man.  Knowing immediately that Cam was gay he could not seem to walk away from him.  The only problem is that Cam is still stand offish because of his past and because he doesn't want to cause any problems for his best friend Drew.

Jason finds every chance he can to approach Cam and to find out more from him.  When he offers what seems to be a no strings attached hook up, it sounds good to Cam who is trying to convince himself that he doesn't want or need a relationship, just as Jason is doing the same thing.  Both men having ghost's holding onto them from the past and neither wanting to open up keeps the other at arms length.

As much as I loved Wild Pitch, I think this one may have just help me captive even more.  To see the desperation, fear, and desire that Cam and Jason have, just would not let me go.  This book was one that luckily when I started reading it I just so happened to be off the following day because I could not put it down.  I found myself still reading at four in the morning wanting to find out if the two would be able to find the happy ending that I so desperately wanted for them.  I also loved the fact that we still got to have a part in keeping up with what was happening with Sean and Mason.  Sloan Johnson is such a wonderful author who writes her books with such emotion and feeling that you find yourself reacting as if you were right there with in the book.  I can not wait to get to read the next story that will show us what happens with Drew, and hopefully will also keep us moving along with our other beloved ball players.

“If you have something to say to me, just say it.” I tapped my fingers on the steering wheel to keep from shaking Drew. He was one of the youngest guys on the team, and right now, his immaturity showed through brightly. It was about time someone knocked some sense into him, before he wound up earning a bad reputation, both on the field and off. “I won’t apologize, because I haven’t done a damn thing to offend you.”
“Really? I shouldn’t be pissed off that I had no clue you were gay?” Drew seethed, his brown eyes narrow slits as he glared at me. “And I should be totally cool with you loading up my friend in the middle of the night to take him back to your place, right?”
“Yeah, actually you should,” I quipped, twisting the wheel tighter. “Cam is a grown man, and if you truly care about him, you should be fucking ecstatic that he’s getting out there to meet people.”
Drew muttered something to himself as he went back to staring out the window. His shoulders slumped forward and he seemed to shrink in his seat. I knew that look. It wasn’t one worn by a concerned or pissed off friend, it was the look of a man who felt the love of his life slipping away from him.
“How long have you felt this way about him?” I asked. My chest tightened, knowing that I wouldn’t stand between them. Drew and I might not be close, but I liked to think of him as a friend, a brother on the team.
“Doesn’t matter.” The response was so quiet I could barely hear the words. As I pulled up to the stoplight, I placed my hand on Drew’s shoulder, unsurprised when he jerked away.
“It does,” I assured him. “And you have to know I wouldn’t have done anything with him if I’d known.”
“Don’t say that. I’ve known for a long time that he’d never feel for me what I do for him.” I suddenly missed the anger Drew showed earlier. “If the way he looked this morning is any indication, you’re exactly what he needs in his life. And if I put my own feelings aside, you’re more than that. You’re what he’s always wanted.”
That was not how I expected this conversation to go. It started exactly as I’d seen it in my mind, but I hadn’t expected Drew to step aside. Maybe I was wrong in thinking that he was immature and selfish.
“Drew, if you say the word, I’ll back off. I’m not willing to destroy two friendships just for a few nights of fun.”
“The only way I’d ask you to do that is if that’s all this is for you.” I pulled up in front of the grocery store, but neither of us moved to open our doors. “Cam is one of the best guys I know. He’s got a big heart, but sometimes, he’s a little too open with it. If you’re only in this for a couple of hot nights, then yeah you should walk away from him.”
I felt backed into a corner. Sure, I’d thought about what it’d be like to explore something more with Cam, but I wasn’t in a place to do that. It had nothing to do with being on the road most of the year and everything to do with my own inability to be open with those around me. I’d grown accustomed to never letting anyone get too close, and Cam had already seen more than people I’d known for years. There was no way I’d be able to hold back if last night and tonight turned into something more.
“I’ll keep that in mind.” It was the most I could promise him.

Sloan Johnson is a big city girl trapped in a country girl’s life. While she longs for the hustle and bustle of New York City or Las Vegas, she hasn’t yet figured out how to sit on the deck with her morning coffee, watching the deer and wild turkeys in the fields while surrounded by concrete and glass.
When she was three, her parents received their first call from the principal asking them to pick her up from school. Apparently, if you aren’t enrolled, you can’t attend classes, even in Kindergarten. The next week, she was in preschool and started plotting her first story soon after.
Later in life, her parents needed to do something to help their socially awkward, uncoordinated child come out of her shell and figured there was no better place than a bar on Wednesday nights. It’s a good thing they did because this is where she found her love of reading and writing. Who needs socialization when you can sit alone in your bedroom with a good book?
Now, Sloan is a tattooed mom with a mohawk and two kids. She’s been kicked out of the PTA in two school districts and is no longer asked to help with fundraisers because she’s been known to lose herself with a good book and forget she has somewhere to be.


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