Release Date October 17th 2017
Buy Links: Harmony Ink | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo
Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Jeff Adams here today on his Tracker Hacker tour. Welcome, Jeff.
One of my goals with the Codename: Winger Young Adult series was to not write a coming out story. In fact, for Theo Reese, the character at the heart of the book, being gay is one of the least interesting things about him. There’s a passing reference in Tracker Hacker that he came out to his parents when he was thirteen and that he was a little worried about saying the words. But other than a little trepidation, his coming out went fine. In fact, if I were to write his coming out it would be a boring story because there was no drama.
Now that he’s sixteen, there are a lot more things for him to be concerned with and caring if anyone knows he’s gay isn’t one of them. Theo is a high school junior, hockey player, computer genius who also works for the same covert agency his parents do. Theo has a boyfriend, too. One who is super important to him even if he can’t spend as much time with Eddie as he’d like.
For this world, I created it as it should be–a place where sexuality and gender identity aren’t things people have to worry about revealing. All that matters is that you’re a good person, good friend, good family member, good employee, good whatever.
I long for the day society catches up to the idea that people can be whoever they want without worrying for their safety. In the Codename: Winger books the main characters inhabit their identities comfortably. There are day this seems like a lofty goal, but I hold out hope we can get there. I loved writing a world where it was already true. I hope you enjoy reading that world as well.
Below is an excerpt showing Eddie and Theo together in this world. After that you’ll find the blurb and buy links if you’d like to pick up a copy of the book. Plus, there’s a Rafflecopter where you can enter for a chance to win a copy. Make sure to stop by the other stops on the tour because the more you enter, the more chances you get to win.
In the following excerpt, we catch up with Theo and Eddie while they’re in Denver. Theo’s playing in a hockey tournament there and Eddie’s shown up unexpectedly. While it’s inconvenient since Theo’s on a mission, they are attending the tournament banquet together. As you’ll see, they behave as any couple might.
Eddie met me in the hallway that led to the ballroom. He was so handsome decked out in a dark purple shirt, black coat, and black jeans. He was almost monochromatic, but the shirt had just enough pop to make a nice contrast. Neither of us liked to dress up. In fact I absolutely shunned it as much as I could. He looked amazing.
“Oh my God, I forgot to check to see if you could be here.” I felt bad that he was all dressed up and might not be able to get in.
“Not to worry.” He pulled out a lanyard and badge from his pocket. He put it around his neck, so he matched me. “I took care of it. You can bring guests, just had to pay fifty bucks. Totally worth it to hang out with you looking all sharp.”
I gave him a quick kiss. Truth was, I needed this. An evening with my boyfriend was a great end to a less-than-stellar day. I’m glad he took the initiative to find out if he could come along.
“Next to you, I’m far from sharp. You look stunning.”
“Dad made me bring something dressy since he’s taking me to some speech tomorrow. I thought it’d be perfect for tonight too.”
“Go Mr. Cochrane.”
Instead of a tournament banquet, I felt like I was going to prom.
Prom? He’d already mentioned that once. Would he ask me? Or should I ask him since he’d asked me to the fall dance? How does that even work when you’re both guys?
“Where’d you go just now? I recognize the look of you solving a problem.”
My face heated. He’d caught me plotting the future.
“Oh man, it’s something good too,” he added. “I haven’t seen you blush in a long time.”
I looked away and willed the blush to fade as I checked out the crowd assembling in the ballroom. It looked like there was an array of guests, from parents to girlfriends.
“Come on.” He reached under my jacket so he could tickle me.
With only the dress shirt between my skin and his fingers, I giggled and squirmed. “Tell me.”
“All right.” I relented since I didn’t want him to go too far with the tickles. “My mind flashed forward to prom and thinking about how great we’ll look.”
A soft, wonderful smile replaced his mischievous look. “Is that your way of asking me to prom?”
“I guess it sorta is, yeah.”
“Very cool.” And just like that, I had a prom date. “Let’s get some dinner, I’m starving.”
We walked into the ballroom and I looked around, trying to decide where we should sit.
“Theo! Over here.”
It was Jamie sitting a couple of tables away. He waved us over. Other teammates sat at the table, but there were three chairs still open. Most tables had some spaces left, but this was a good choice since Jamie was cool. The other two guys were both defensemen, one was Chuck, but I couldn’t remember the other’s name.
“Hey, Jamie. These free?”
“Yeah, man. Hoping to get a table full of teammates.” He looked at Eddie, and it was obvious he was trying to resolve if Eddie was on our team or not. Given that I didn’t know everyone on sight yet either, I understood his confusion.
“This is my boyfriend, Eddie. He came to town to catch some of the games. Eddie, this is our goalie, Jamie.”
“S’up?” Eddie said with a quick nod of the head. “You were great in that shootout.”
“And this is Chuck and….” I pushed my brain one more time to see if I could get the name of the other guy, but it wasn’t happening.
“Billy,” he said.
I nodded and we sat down. I attacked the salad in front of me. I’d had a couple of protein bars after the game, but they weren’t enough.
“That’s cool you could come see the games,” Jamie said to Eddie.
“The only person that came with me is my coach.”
Donny joined us. If Eddie was uncomfortable being at a table full of players who were strangers, he didn’t show it. It was different from any gathering we’d had with the team back home, which was usually a party at someone’s house where we could drift around. Here, we couldn’t leave the table.
Dinner was good, but it went on way too long. Eddie was a champ listening to all of the strategy we talked. Donny’s coach had looked at some of the other teams’ play, so we had some intel that we dissected to be ready for tomorrow.
High school student. Hockey player. Computer whiz kid. Covert agent?
At sixteen Theo Reese is the youngest agent for Tactical Operational Support. His way with computers makes him invaluable. He designs new gadgets, helps agents (including his parents) in the field, and works to keep the TOS network safe. But when a hacker breaches the system TOS uses to track agents, Theo is put to the test like never before.
Thrust from behind the safety of his desk, Theo must go into the field to put a stop to the hack. He’s scared but resolved because one of the missing agents is his father. And just to make it more interesting, he has to keep everything a secret from his boyfriend and teammates.
Can Theo get the job done, save his dad, and make things good with his boyfriend?
Someone from each stop on the blog tour will win an ebook and one lucky person from across all the stops will get an autographed paperback (I’ll ship it anywhere in the world).
a Rafflecopter giveaway
About the Author
Jeff Adams has written stories since he was in middle school and became a gay romance writer in 2009 when his first short stories were published. Since then he’s written several shorts and novels.
Jeff lives in rural California with his husband of twenty years, Will. Some of his favorite things include the musicals Rent and [title of show], the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins hockey teams, and the reality TV competition So You Think You Can Dance.
Jeff is the co-host of Jeff & Will’s Big Gay Fiction Podcast, a weekly show devoted to gay romance fiction as well as pop culture. New episodes come out every Monday at biggayfictionpodcast.com.
Learn more about Jeff at http://jeffadamswrites.com/