Thursday, October 23, 2014

Sotto Voce Blog Tour! (+$25 Barnes and Noble GC Giveaway!)

Title: Sotto Voce
Author: Erin Finnegan
Series: N/A
Pages: 270
Date Published: October 21st, 2014
Publisher: Interlude Press
Format: Paperback
Genre: Romance
Source: Goddess Fish Blog Tours

New York-based wine critic Thomas Baldwin can make or break careers with his column for Taste Magazine. But when his publisher orders him to spend a year profiling rising stars of California’s wine country and organizing a competition between the big name wineries of Napa and the smaller artisan wineries of Sonoma, his world gets turned upside-down by an enigmatic young winemaker who puts art before business.

Sotto Voce is the story of love and wine, and how both require patience, passion, an acceptance of change—and an understanding that sometimes, you have to let nature take its course.
~Guest Post!~

Last week, someone told me that readers of M/M romance don't want female characters in their stories.

I find that odd considering that M/M fiction has such a strong female readership. Whoever these people are that don't want female characters in their novels featuring gay romance, I'm not one of them.

And apparently, I'm not writing for them, either.

That's because some of the strongest characters in Sotto Voce are the female supporting characters, Brooke Clifton and Carmen Sandoval.

These two women have a solid sense of self, and aren't afraid to pursue their dreams. In fact, it's almost a misnomer to call Brooke and Carmen supporting characters, because in many ways, they're the ones pulling the strings.

While the heart of Sotto Voce is a romance between Tom, a wine critic, and Greg, an artisan winemaker, their story would not have happened without the scheming of Brooke and Carmen.

Tom's California odyssey happens because Brooke, his publisher, has plans to increase the stature and ad revenue of Taste Magazine. She invites Tom to her office under the guise of planning his publication calendar for the year, when she has actually already done that for him, going so far as to having booked his hotel and rental car and having found him a renter for his New York apartment. And the fact that Tom is recently single helps to ensure his participation. Brooke has manipulated him brilliantly, and continues to do so throughout his California assignment.

Carmen Sandoval, the president of a Sonoma trade association, also uses her strong will to shape events. The common link between Tom and Greghaving known Tom since college and becoming one of Greg's closest friends in the Sonoma wine communityCarmen fiercely defends the industry she represents. And while she isn't shy about using friendships to help her achieve her goals, she also quietly goes about protecting the friends and relationships she values.

Both women initially go to great lengths to downplay their mutual vulnerabilityeach otheruntil they find a way to exorcise the demons of their pasts and define their own terms of happiness.

Without the influence of these two strong female characters, the romance between Tom and Greg could never have occurred. So I say, keep bringing the strong female characters in M/M fiction. As allies, antagonists, friends, colleagues, truth-tellers or obstacles, they can add another wrinkle to help bring the story to life.
~Try an Excerpt!~
Kennedy took the glasses, rinsed them and the wine thief, and then moved on to another tank. Repeating the procedure, a velvety red wine was deposited into the glasses.

“Mezzo, the Zinfandel.”

“I’m sensing a trend here,” Tom said. “Rhapsody Wines? Allegrezza? Mezzo?”

“Mm. Yes,” Kennedy responded, sounding truly uninterested in the conversation.

“Is there a reason for the choice of each name for the particular wine?” Tom asked.

“If you can’t tell, then I haven’t done my job very well.”

Tom again checked the color, the legs, the nose, then sipped at the rich, lively Zin.

“It has the brightness of fruit, without the feeling that I’m eating a bowl of jam—which is happening altogether too often lately.”

Kennedy smirked—the closest thing to a smile since they met, Tom thought.

“Let’s see. The Roussanne? Allegrezza. It’s bright, cheerful, like a bouquet of spring flowers.”

The winemaker’s head might have been turned, but Tom could still see the slightest smile slip across his lips.

“I’ll have to take a stab that Mezzo is your in-between wine. Not bright and summery like the Roussanne, but there’s something else you’re making that’s darker, richer—something with deeper tannins. So the Zinfandel is Mezzo.”


“And it’s lovely,” Tom said.

“Thank you. Syrah’s next.”

“And it is?”


The thief slipped samples of a dark, sinfully lush wine into the glasses. The color looked like it belonged on the runway, like haute couture. It clung to the glass like silk cut on the bias. A swirl, a dip of the nose—Tom closed his eyes.

“Blackberry, pepper and... something else, almost smoky, with a hint of sweet, like... maple?”

He took a sip, held it on his tongue. He sensed Kennedy’s eyes on him.


Kennedy dipped his head as the corners of his mouth rose, revealing dimpled cheeks. 
~Meet Erin!~
Erin Finnegan is a former journalist and editor. She was born and raised in Southern California, where she lives with two sheep dogs and grows, ferments and drinks Syrah and Zinfandel in the foothills outside Los Angeles. 

Sotto Voce is her first novel.

Connect with Erin at, on Facebook at, on Goodreads at and on Twitter at @eringofinnegan.

Erin will be awarding a Multi-format Sotto Voce eBook to 10 randomly drawn winners and a Grand Prize of a $25 B&N gift card will be awarded to one randomly drawn winner, all via rafflecopter during the tour. 
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thank you for hosting this tour stop!

  2. Great excerpt! I can't imagine any bacon flavor in wine being a good thing....

  3. I had to pop in to comment on that! That wine reference is based on a real experience~a wine I tasted on the urban wine trail in Santa Barbara. The wine was harvested from a vineyard that had been near a wildfire, and the ash ultimately infused the root system, resulting in grapes that had a hint of "smoke" to them. The result, on the nose especially, was the slightest hint of bacon. And the wine? Fantastic.

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.