Surrounded by Silnce by Eric Huffbind - Blog Tour, Interview, Excerpt, Giveaway


Lonely billionaire, Samuel Barron, has finally met someone he finds himself falling for, but can he handle a romance for a gentleman whose entire world is surrounded by silence?

The Rescuer 2

After public humiliation, Sam Barron has come to the realization his billions can’t buy him love or happiness. Despondent and feeling like his life is in a downward spiral, he comes to realize he needs some professional help. Despite trepidations, Sam turns to Jason Parker, a social worker who at his heart, is a rescuer. Even though Sam had been so hateful towards him in the past, Jason can’t help but think Sam deserves to suffer. Jason tells Sam straight out, “You’re a spoiled brat without a shred of humility!”


Jason has deep concerns about helping Sam, but might be willing, if Sam volunteers at a soup kitchen. Grudgingly, Sam accepts Jason’s condition, and while performing his volunteer work, meets the flirtatious Noah Wagner. Noah is close in age, attractive, and Sam likes the way he feels whenever he’s around him. Noah is the first person Sam has known who is profoundly deaf. So, how is Sam to navigate a romantic interest with a man who can’t hear a word he says?


Surrounded by Silence, a Contemporary Gay Male Romance, is a sequel to Mr. Huffbind’s debut novel, The Rescuer. However, this book can be read as a stand-alone. If you enjoy a story where the villain becomes the hero, you will love Surrounded by Silence.


Cover Artist: Eric Huffbind

Release Date: October 14, 2020

Genre/s: Contemporary Gay Male Romance

Trope/s: Billionaires, Hurt/Comfort, Post-Divorce, Middle Age

Themes: Learning what it means to be selfless rather than selfish.

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 71 000 words/259 pages

This is a sequel to The Rescuer, but can be read as a stand-alone.

Goodreads

Buy Links - Available on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Amazon UK


interview

How long have you been writing?

Three years.


What made you decide you wanted to put yourself out there to be published?

I’m not sure how to answer this question. Writing and publishing a book was just one of those ‘bucket list’ items I wanted to check off. I think what pushed me over the edge was two things. Developing a love for the genre of Contemporary Gay Male Romance, along with the discovery of being an independent author. Now I was freed from the burden of trying to get a manuscript even accepted. And to be perfectly realistic, this genre is simply not one a traditional publisher would touch. If there comes a day that I see this genre sitting on a shelf at Barnes & Noble, then I will know that that would be a real possibility.


What was your first published book?

My debut novel was The Rescuer. That book, in fact, was the precursor to Surrounded by Silence. It is my character, Jason Parker, who embodies to soul of a rescuer. Essentially, an individual who can’t help themselves from always trying to rescue others from emotional self-destruction.


Do you have a favorite character from one of your books? Why?

From Surrounded by Silence, as to who is my favorite character, that’s a tough question, because I have a certain fondness for all of them. But I would have to say my favorite is Sam Barron. I love him, because he wants so badly to make amends to people he has wronged. He is consumed by the desire to become a better person than the spoiled brat he historically has been. And, although he is being tasked to do things he does not want to take part in, he forces himself to keep at it in his effort to feel like a whole person. I love to see how he grows as a human being.


Would you ever write a hetero romance? Why or why not?

For me, my answer is no, I would not write hetero romance. Not that I have anything against it, but I want to write what I love. The work that goes into writing a complete novel is mammoth. I cannot see myself spending months writing in a genre lack I have no interest in. For me, that’s M/M Romance.


What are your thoughts on erotica?

I certainly enjoy reading it occasionally, but I cannot see myself writing it. I’m just not that talented. I find sex scenes difficult to write, even though I have fans who tell me how much they enjoy the steam I have created. I had one review that read, “There’s enough steam to fog up your kindle!” I was gobsmacked that the sex I had written was well received. For one thing, I prefer to tell a lot of my story through character’s dialogue, and during sex, there is not a whole lot of talking going on. Any sex scene you write has to be somewhat titillating. My mind has to go to a place of sexual fantasy to really pull it off.


Erotica is pretty much nothing but wall to wall sex. For me, the prospect sounds positively exhausting to my creative energy. I have a great deal of respect for authors who write erotica, because I think it’s a tough project to tackle. There are authors of erotica or erotic romance that amaze me with their skillset. One such author I have great admiration for is Devon McCormack. His talents blow me away! I would have to imagine, authors such as Mr. McCormack absolutely love writing it, otherwise, I don’t see how they could pull it off so well.


What would you say is the distinct difference between m/m and gay fiction?

The key difference to me, is there is no romance present in the plot. Gay fiction has a protagonist that is gay, and perhaps the story delves into the gay community, but there are not two gay men or two lesbians falling in love.


Do you think women making up a good portion of the m/m fiction writers detracts from the genre? Why or why not?

It certainly makes no difference to me. I have met gay men who, in their minds, feel it is just wrong. That’s crazy talk to me. My favorite Gay Male Romance author is Felice Stephens, who is a woman. So, it appears to me being a male author is not a requirement whatsoever.


What is it about gay fiction and or m/m romance that pleasures you to write it?

Writing M/M Romance allows be to relive the high of falling in love again, and all the euphoria that comes with it.


Your favorite gay celeb?

Tough question. I think I shall go with Anderson Cooper. I am a total CNN junkie, and I love Anderson Cooper. Plus, he’s very easy on the eyes.



excerpt

Coming through the front door of their apartment, Jason called out, “Honey, I'm home. Where are you?”


Poking his head out, Christopher announced, “I'm in the kitchen making dinner.”


Strolling into the kitchen, Jason gave Christopher a kiss, and asked, “How was work today?”


“Oh, it was okay, same old same old. Not particularly exciting. How about you?”


Jason took a small step backwards and began rubbing his eyebrows. “Well, an old friend of yours came to see me today, without any forewarning, of course!”


“An old friend of mine? I can’t imagine what old friend of mine would come to see you.”


“I'm being facetious,” Jason said. “Calling this man a friend is a bit of a stretch, and he’s someone I wasn’t happy to see.”


Christopher's eyes narrowed as he squinted. “Please, tell me it wasn't Sam Barron?”


“I'd be happy to tell you it wasn't Sam Barron… but I would be lying. Yes, it was Sam. Admittedly, I was floored! And as you can imagine, especially since he showed up unannounced, I was less than ecstatic to see him.”


“Dear God, almighty! What in the hell did he come to see you about?”


“As you might suspect, I was a bit miffed. Not trying to change the subject, but something smells awfully good. What's for dinner?”


“Just a frozen entrée of lasagna. Don't get too excited, but it’s your favorite brand. So, go on, why did Sam show up at your office?”


Jason took a seat at the small dinette table. “As hard as you might find this to believe, he came seeking my professional help. As far as I can gather, ever since all the bad press in the media hit the airways, he’s fallen into a deep depression. Perhaps, a deep depression isn't the best choice of words. Significant emotional distress is more accurate. Complains of loneliness and being guilt-ridden.”


Christopher said sharply, “And why should you care if he's guilt-ridden? He deserves to feel guilt-ridden!”


“You're not going to get an argument from me. Still… I felt bad for him. It was as if he was pleading for forgiveness, and begging for my help. He says he wants to become a better person. The guy was crying. Sounded desperate.”


“Christopher responded, “It sounds like he needs a psychologist, not a social worker.”


“Exactly! That's what I told him, but he insisted he wants me.”


“No offense, but why does he want your help?”


“You know Sam," Jason answered. "He always wants the best. In his mind, I'm the best. In addition, I'm gay, which is especially important to him, and I get that.”


Christopher started shaking his head in utter disbelief. “Wait now! Wait just a minute here! After the way that man treated you! And treated me for that matter! He has the gall to come and ask you for help!”


“He said he was a nervous wreck coming to see me! He knew damn well I wasn't going to be happy having him show up on my doorstep. The thing is, honey, I felt bad for him, and believe me, I hear myself saying this, and yet, I can't believe these words are coming out of my mouth.”


Christopher crossed his arms against his chest. “Let me guess! Your inner rescuer kicked in.”


Jason nodded his agreement of his husband’s quick and accurate assessment.


Jason waved his hand in a gesture to encourage Christopher to sit down with him. He pushed the chair away from the table giving Christopher easier access to sit.


“He saw how much I helped you. So, he trusts me. That's why he wants my help. You're right, of course, my inner rescuer did kick in. I told him I had to speak with you, and I would only help him if you granted me permission to. I wasn't going to do it without your consent. The guy looks pitiful. He said I could name my price! He even offered to pay me five hundred dollars an hour. Mind you, not during my regular working hours. He knows this is something that must take place outside the realm of my job. He was willing to come here, or I could go to his home. Tell me, what do you think? How do you feel about it? Would you be okay if I worked with him? Trust me, I have my own reservations, and... I can't lie, the money does sound appealing. I'm not a licensed therapist, but what I do isn't such a stretch from what a psychologist would do. So, I'm asking, would you be comfortable with this?”


Christopher asked, “The question you should be asking yourself is, how do you feel about it?” Although, I must admit, I know that man. If he wants you bad enough, he'll pay you whatever price you want. Ever since you sold your condominium and decided to live in my apartment, you’ve wanted to buy a house for us. Remember the model home we saw? The one built by Kirkland Home Builders. That money could help a lot towards a down payment. It's just so ironic! This is the same man who sent you into a panic attack, and now he comes crawling to you for help. Although, I know what you’re talking about. There’s a side of Sam Barron he doesn’t let people see. I'll be okay with it—if you're okay with it.”


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the Rescuer

the Rescuer, Surrounded by Silence



the author

Eric Huffbind is a man of many talents. Over the course of his lifetime, he has worked as a Registered Nurse, a Travel Agent, and an Uber driver. He characterizes himself as a hopeless romantic and is the eternal social butterfly. Among his passionate interests are history, genealogy, romance books, and travel.


Although his novels focus on the romantic relationship of two gay men, regardless of your sexual orientation, his stories are meant to rekindle the spirit and euphoria of falling in love.

Eric is a lifelong resident of Southwest Ohio. Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, he currently resides in West Chester, Ohio with his husband Paul and their Pomeranian, Linus.


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