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“The Family We Make” released

August 14, 2014

Family2 final

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The Family We Make, the second book in my “Finding Family” series, is now available from All Romance ebooks. I had temporarily taken it off Smashwords and Amazon for a couple of format issues to be resolved. If anyone gets a file with a bad format please let me know. There are new versions up now on Amazon and Smashwords that should be good for all devices including Kindle Keyboards and old Nooks.It should be on other sites like Barnes & Noble in about two weeks. I particularly want to know if anyone buys a copy from 8/16 onward that has format issues.

This is my first venture into real self-pub, and it’s been a bit of a learning experience. (Next time I’ll give myself even more lead time.) But I had fun, and I’m really excited to get this story released. I hope you’ll enjoy meeting Rick and Travis, and reconnecting with Sam and the other characters from the previous story.

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Family cover with text 3 In the first book, the free novella The Family We’re Born With, we met Sam Albright, as he arrived in Minnesota to spend Christmas with his biological mother, the woman who gave him up for adoption, thirty-one years ago. Although that book is primarily about Sam’s half-brother, Jesse, and Jesse’s boyfriend, Devin, we find out a few important things about Sam as well. If you haven’t read that story, you might want to stop here and go take a look at it. You can get it as a free novella from Smashwords, Amazon, All Romance ebooks, and more.

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The Family We Make begins a few hours after the end of the novella – Sam discovers that locating his little brother, Rick, is really just the beginning of the story…

At seventeen, Rick Albright left his home, his parents and even his old name, rather than pretend to be straight. But being on his own was hard. When his big brother Sam found him, and insisted on giving him a place to stay, he didn’t resist too long. Living with Sam is better than fighting just to survive, but it’s not easy to find his balance in a simple, small-town life, after his time on the streets.

Travis Brinkerhoff finally managed to come out in college, his second year anyway. It was the one bright side to losing his baseball scholarship and jock status. But without money for tuition, second year came to an abrupt end. He’s back in his small Minnesota hometown, and back in the closet. Travis feels like he’s trying to fit into a life he’s outgrown. If he’s going to survive, he has to figure out a way to be his own man, maybe even have his own man, without losing the family he loves.

When he left the Marines, Sam Albright wanted nothing more than to find his missing younger brother. Mission accomplished. Now he’s got an independent, possibly traumatized, openly gay young man on his hands, a girlfriend in a war zone overseas, and parents he has to lie to in order to keep the peace. Keeping it all together won’t be easy, but Sam has never backed away from a challenge.

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This is a fairly long novel, at 150,000 words. Part of what I want to do with this series is to explore the grey zones of family and acceptance. In my M/M novels, I think it’s too easy sometimes to go for black and white. The totally supportive sister who helps plan a gay wedding. The horrible homophobe who lets a gay colleague get shot. But most of life happens between those two extremes.

Life is about the dad who just wants to pretend he didn’t hear the word “gay.” Or the mom who wonders why their bisexual kid can’t just stick to the nice, easy heterosexual relationships and avoid the hard stuff. Or the brother who grudgingly accepts his brother’s partner of ten years, as long as they never touch in his presence. Being accepted and loved just as you are is the cornerstone of real family, but it’s much easier said than done. In the Finding Family series, I look at unconditional love and conditional love, and the adjustments that people make to have relationships of all kinds. What is reasonable accommodation? What is failing to be true to yourself? There are no easy answers, and sometimes life throws curve-balls that make it even more complicated. I hope you enjoy following my characters on their journey.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. donnajones2014 permalink
    August 14, 2014 11:44 pm

    Damn, I knew this was coming but I still haven’t reread the first book. How could I be unprepared!!

    HAPPY SELF PUBLISHED RELEASE DAY πŸ™‚

    • August 14, 2014 11:53 pm

      Aw, thank you πŸ™‚ And there’s no rush – books keep. (Unlike chocolate, mmm, need chocolate…) They’ll be there when the time is right to take a look. I hope you enjoy the new one when you do get there. But I’m very familiar with the “too many books, too little time” phenomenon.

  2. Erin permalink
    August 15, 2014 7:22 am

    One clicked!! MINE MINE MINE πŸ˜€
    Thanks, by the way, you’ve totally made my day.

  3. August 22, 2014 7:39 pm

    I wanted to say thank you for such a thoughtful and well written novel.

  4. Elle permalink
    August 26, 2014 11:37 am

    Kaje, just finished reading them both & they are a beautiful read. I thoroughly enjoyed them & think your writing just gets better & better. Quick Q: will there be an update of their story (so many unfinished bits of the tale) or is this it & can I have a Sam in real life please?!

    • August 26, 2014 2:46 pm

      I’m so glad you liked the stories. Yes, there will be at least one more book in the series (tentatively titled “The Family We Keep”) since they guys are clearly only at the beginning of a difficult road at the end of this book. No release time frame yet though. I’m juggling projects.

      And I’d love to give a Sam to everyone who needs him. πŸ™‚

  5. Isa permalink
    September 10, 2014 9:19 pm

    Just wanted to let you to know when you download the PDF from Smashwords the cover is lost. The first page that shows is the blurb. I have not read the book yet so I don’t know if there are other problems but will update if I come across any. I also downloaded the ePub and that cover was fine.

    • September 10, 2014 10:39 pm

      This is a general problem with the way Smashwords makes a .pdf file (which it does from the .doc file.) It doesn’t insert the cover image. You can add the cover into the .doc in addition to uploading it separately, although they recommend not doing so, but then the other formats get two covers and I’m told the second one can mess up the format. It is one of the downsides to Smashwords. But I appreciate the confirmation that this happens.

      I’m glad if the epub worked for you. If you want a pdf with the cover, email me and I can send you one.

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