Please give a warm welcome to Diana Copland, here today to chat about Michael, Reinvented and Pixie and Scooter!
Hi, Gigi!! Thank you so much for allowing me to write a blog post for the release of ‘Michael, Reinvented’.
‘Michael, Reinvented’ is the sequel to ‘David, Renewed’, book two in the Delta Restorations Series. Book one detailed the love story of David and Jackson, and how they found their way to one another through work that was done on David’s turn of the century craftsman style home. Michael Crane, David’s assistant, was introduced during book one. He’s snarky and prickly and while handsome is not the sweetest person in the world. Gilbert Chandler is Jackson’s best friend. Tall and muscular with a neatly shaved head and a dimpled smile, Gil is pretty much Michael’s polar opposite. And yet for some reason, Gil falls for hard for Michael. Now all he has to do is convince Michael that there IS such a thing as a HEA. It’s going to be a tough sell.
Someone said to me today, ‘I don’t always like Michael, but I knew if David loved him he must be redeemable.’ I wanted to jump up and down and shout, YES!! YES, THIS!!! Because I think you can tell a lot about a person by who loves them. David, who may be the sweetest character I’ve ever written, loves Michael. And Gil, sweet, big, kind Gil, is in love with Michael. Both of them see what other people sometimes aren’t patient enough to take into consideration; that Michael, for all his mouthy snark, is not, at heart, a snotty arrogant person. It’s an act, a self-defense mechanism, and you can see through it if you look at how he treats two groups that feature prominently in these books; animals, and marginalized people.
This is scooter, David’s little female corgi.
Michael’s favorite being on the planet is arguably this little dog. And she loves him just as fiercely. So much, in fact, that she puts herself between Michael and a vandal who’d really like to hurt him. I’ve always believed you could tell a lot about a person by how animals feel about them. Scooter ADORES Michael.
There’s another animal in ‘Michael, Reinvented’.
This is ‘Pixie’, the Maine Coon Gil inherited from his mother.
Pixie is thirty five pounds of very large feline, who Michael is determined to take care of during a period when Gil can’t. Pixie and Michael actually have a lot in common; they’re both prissy and particular, and they both are fixated with their hair. (Lol). Initially Michael finds the enormous Maine Coon disconcerting and alarming, but the relationship warms as time goes by. By the end of the book they might not be the best of friends, but they have a healthy respect for one another and are well on their way to curling up on the couch together for a nap.
Michael is also surprisingly kind and protective of Gil’s elderly dad, a victim of dementia. Gil Sr. lives in a facility for the treatment of Alzheimer’s and associated diseases of aging and the scene I wrote between old Gil and Michael is one of my favorites in the book.
I like to write characters that are complex, and have layers. Michael is one of those characters; a man who seems to be one thing, but who actually is something very different.
Title: Michael, Reinvented (Delta Restorations #2)
Author: Diana Copland
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 19th 2017
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 220 pages
Reviewed by: Belen, Renee, Kristin and Ele
Cute hipster and interior designer Michael doesn’t do love—not after his ex screwed him over. Sex is a different story, though, and the gentle giant who’s painting the mural in the old mansion they’re restoring might be perfect hookup material. Gil is just Michael’s type with his solid muscle, wicked sense of humor, and the hazel eyes that seem to see into Michael’s soul.
Trouble is, Gil does do love. He wants romance and forever, and he’s set his sights firmly on Michael. Michael’s not going there again.
Yet when Michael is the victim of a vandal who’s been plaguing the men working for Delta Restoration, Renovation, and Design, Gil is the first person he tells. No matter how he fights it, it’s becoming harder and harder to deny he’s crazy about the guy—even if that thought terrifies him. But the true fear sets in when the criminal behavior escalates, and Michael realizes he might have lost the chance to tell Gil how he feels—forever.
Delta Restorations series
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Michael Meets Pixie Excerpt
Walking up another three steps, he moved through a shadowy dining room featuring a long blond wooden table and eight chairs. Five hanging medallion lamps with beige shades in different geometric shapes hung above. A counter separated the kitchen and dining room, three simple stools at the poured concrete surface, more pale wooden cabinets along the wall above a very modern range and beside a stainless-steel fridge. The combination of eras was seamless and perfect, and Michael ran his hand over the smooth, polished concrete, making a soft sound of pleasure.
He’d had no idea Gil loved midcentury modern as much as he did. But then, he didn’t know very much about Gil, full stop. He knew he was handsome and a teasing smartass and an amazing lay, but he’d held him at a distance, hadn’t let him close enough to find out anything about him. Basically, he’d refused to discuss him with David; he hadn’t wanted to know anything about him. Michael looked around the impeccably decorated space, clearly revealed in the light shining from under the fan hood above the stove, and shook his head. He’d been so stupid.
There was a garden window across the room with several framed photos sitting among containers holding herbs, and he crossed to look at them.
There was a picture of Gil, Vernon, Manny, and Jackson, all wearing snow gear and holding snowboards. This must have been pre-David, or Michael’s best friend had been doing his version of “skiing”—sitting in the lodge with a hot toddy. There was another photo of a young Gil with a full head of medium brown hair, posing with another boy who looked a lot like him and a very pretty girl with waist-length blonde hair. Michael wondered if they were his siblings. There were also portraits of a beautiful woman with bobbed hair and jewelry a la Doris Day in the fifties, and a handsome man with a smile like Gil’s in a World War II Army uniform. Gil looked like his parents, Michael thought. He had his father’s bone structure but his mother’s soft mouth. Michael sighed and put the pictures back in the window, turning to look for the cabinet Jackson had told him held the cat food. And froze, his breath catching in his throat.
“Jesus God,” he muttered.
Across from him on the concrete counter sat the biggest cat he’d ever seen. It was white and orange, with a white breast, muzzle, and front paws, butterscotch orange face, and full, bushy tail. Dark orange markings curled around his back, and he had a huge pink nose. Large, vivid green eyes studied Michael, and the tufts of orange fur sticking up on the tips of its pointed ears twitched. The beast sat at least three feet tall; Michael could tell just by looking it had to outweigh Scooter.
“They named you ‘Pixie’?” The cat’s ears shifted at the sound of its name. “Someone had a very twisted sense of humor.” The cat stood and stretched, then jumped down from the counter almost silently on its enormous feet before he approached Michael.
He stiffened. “If you eat me, I can’t feed you.”
The cat sniffed at his legs, and if it wanted to stretch a bit, Michael’s crotch wasn’t out of reach. Instead it wound around his legs, making an odd chirping sound.
Michael’s brows shot up. “Dude, really? That’s the best you’ve got?” The cat’s noises grew louder, and Michael was torn between surprise and the urge to laugh.
He found the cupboard with the cat food and looked down at Jackson’s note. “Okay, so you get a full can and a full bowl of the dry stuff. Huh, I wonder why Jackson would know that.” He took out a can, and the cat’s noises rose in volume.
“Yeah, yeah, I get it.” He found the bowls in a far corner, sitting on a place mat with the face of Garfield on it, the words FEED ME in capital letters. He chuckled, picking up the two large earthenware bowls. Once they were filled, he put them back down, and the cat attacked the food like he hadn’t eaten in weeks.