OS: Welcome to Joe Cosentino here today to talk about Holiday Tales!
An Interview with Vasily Volkov, a character in Joe Cosentino’s Holiday Tales from Fairyland, the second Tales from Fairyland e-book novella and Tales from Fairyland Anthology paperback
Since the readers can’t see you, what do you look like Vasily?
I’m twenty, tall, lean, and strong with auburn hair, olive-colored skin, and sapphire eyes.
Where do you live?
In the Yagaville Orphanize in Fairyland, where I was left as a child. I work in the kitchen.
How does it feel to be out (no pun intended) of the new novella, Holiday Tales from Fairyland, by Joe Cosentino?
It’s great to get out of the kitchen.
Were you in Joe Cosentino’s popular The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland published by Dreamspinner Press? And how did the new stories come about?
No, mine is the Vasillisa, the Beautiful story. That first novella was Joe’s comic gay take on Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk, Pinocchio, Goldie Locks and the Three Bears, and The Snow Queen. I, and the readers who loved The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland, kept whispering in Joe’s ear, and Holiday Tales from Fairyland was born. Also, Joe told me he missed Fairyland and couldn’t wait to come back. I don’t blame him. My home is a wonderful place. LGBT people aren’t represented in traditional fairytales. Joe changed all that in his tales from Fairyland.
Your story takes place on Winter Solstice. What is it that you love about that holiday?
The air is cold, and the trees are bare. I love watching a handsome mystery man ride by my orphanage in white on a white horse to announce the morning, in red on a red horse to proclaim the afternoon, and in black on a black horse to signal the night.
Tell us about your story in Holiday Tales from Fairyland?
I am being tormented by the priest who runs the orphanage. So I gaze out the window each day at a mysterious, handsome man who rides by my orphanage each morning, noon, and night. Upon following him, I discover the man is a prince under the powers of Baba Yaga. Can I rescue my tortured Prince Anton from the witch’s conversion therapy and dance around his pole on May Day? Story three spills the winter beans.
Tell us about Prince Anton.
He’s my winter solstice. Prince Anton has long black hair, cherry cheeks, a muscular frame, and piercing emerald eyes. Though he is bewitched by Baba Yaga, his kind heart, goodness, and love for me come through like the sun through the barren tree branches.
Who are the other characters in your story besides Prince Anton, Baba Yaga the witch, the priest who manages your orphanage, and you?
Baba Yaga’s two henchmen. You’ll have to read the story to find out who partners with whom in the end? You’ll definitely be surprised!
What are the other stories in the novella?
The first story takes place on Halloween. Ichabod Crane, a young schoolteacher, has a boner over sexy and muscular farmer Brom Bones. When the residents of the homophobic Sleepy Hollow aren’t happy about it, the headless horseman rides into town. Will Ichabod fall off his horse into Brom’s strong, rescuing arms, teaching the town folk a lesson in acceptance they’ll never forget? You’ll see! In story two on Christmas, hunky Cavalier P.I. receives a visit from a new client, handsome young Fritz. Somebody strangled Fritz’s sister Clara with the ribbons of her toe shoes, and Fritz is the top suspect. But he seems more interested in the bulge in Cavalier’s tights than in getting himself off the hook. When Cavalier turns sweet on Fritz, it’s time for the private investigator to question his old dance partner the Sugar Plum Fairy, Clara’s husband the Nutcracker, Fritz’s other sister Louise, and Fritz’s Godpapa Drosselmeyer to save his intended, and find out: Who Killed Clara?
Fairyland is a very gay place.
The gayest. It’s Fairyland after all!
Tell us about the heroes in the other two stories.
Ichabod Crane is a young schoolteacher whose heart has been stolen by the town hunk, Brom Bones. Ichabod not only needs to win over the man he loves, but also win over the hearts and minds of the bigoted residents of Sleepy Hollow. Cavalier is a terrific private investigator who is seeking the perfect dance partner in Fritz, his gorgeous, young, and mysterious client.
Any chance you’ll be pairing in the future with Cavalier or Ichabod?
No. I’m a one-man man. And that man is Prince Anton of Rider Village, Fairyland.
Are you excited about the paperback of the entire Fairyland Collection?
So excited! What I hope is that everyone reads and these funny, sexy, heartwarming, romantic, fairytales. They will no doubt bring you back to better, joyous times. I also hope the movie studio producing those amazing animated fairytales finally realizes that fairytales should include everyone—including the bewitched prince who finds true love!
What other stories has Joe published?
I’m not in them, but they are still terrific. For Dreamspinner Press, In My Heart: An Infatuation & A Shooting Star (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention) are loosely based on Joe’s high school and college years. His popular, heartwarming Bobby and Paolo Holiday Stories are A Home for the Holidays (which takes place on the gorgeous and romantic island of Capri), The Perfect Gift, and The First Noel (releasing 12/7). There Joe goes again writing about the holidays!
And Joe has two award-winning mystery series with other publishers.
I’m not in those either. Reviewers called his Nicky and Noah mysteries “the funniest books ever written,” captivating mysteries,” and “The Hardy Boys meets Murder She Wrote meets Hart to Hart.” Adorable couple, college theatre professors Nicky and Noah, solve murder mysteries on their Treemeadow College (named about gay couple Tree and Meadow) campus and on tour in Drama Queen, Drama Muscle (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention), Drama Cruise, Drama Luau, Drama Detective, Drama Fraternity, Drama Castle (releasing 2/1/19). His popular Jana Lane mysteries (The Wild Rose Press) feature an ex-child movie star making a movie comeback and solving murder mysteries on set. Jana has a gay agent and gay best friend who provide lots of gay humor. The five novels are Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll, and Rag Doll.
Joe also wrote the Cozzi Cove series published by NineStar Press.
I’m not in those either! Cal Cozzi runs a gay resort on the New Jersey Shore. We get his story and the sexy, entertaining, and often surprising stories of his gay residents each summer. The novels are Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention), Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, Cozzi Cove: Stepping Out, Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings, and Cozzi Cove: Happy Endings.
How does Joe, a college professor/department chair, find the time to write all these books?
Characters like me tell him what to write.
How do you deal with bad reviews?
Reviews for Holiday Tales from Fairyland have all been good so far. If/when bad ones come, reviewers, as the expression goes, “Careful what you put out there, karma’s a bitch.”
You have a hot love scene with Prince Anton. How did you handle that?
The expression of our love under a time of incredible trial for us was beautiful and magical. We are a true Fairyland love story.
What frustrates you?
Witches who use conversion therapy, torturing gay people in an unsuccessful attempt to try to turn them straight.
How can your readers contact you?
Through Joe. He loves hearing from readers. They can contact us at: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com.
HOLIDAY TALES FROM FAIRYLAND
the second Tales from Fairyland e-book novella
by JOE COSENTINO
It’s holiday time in Fairyland. On Halloween, Ichabod Crane, a young schoolteacher, has a boner over sexy and muscular farmer Brom Bones. When the residents of the homophobic Sleepy Hollow aren’t happy about it, the headless horseman rides into town. Will Ichabod fall off his horse into Brom’s strong, rescuing arms, teaching the townsfolk a lesson in acceptance they’ll never forget? On Christmas, hunky Cavalier P.I. receives a visit from a new client, handsome young Fritz. Somebody strangled Fritz’s sister Clara with the ribbons of her toe shoes, and Fritz is the top suspect. But he seems more interested in the bulge in Cavalier’s tights than in getting himself off the hook. When Cavalier turns sweet on Fritz, it’s time for the private investigator to question his old dance partner the Sugar Plum Fairy, Clara’s husband the Nutcracker, Fritz’s other sister Louise, and Fritz’s Godpapa Drosselmeyer to save his intended and find out: Who Killed Clara? At Winter Solstice, young Vasily falls in love with a mysterious, handsome man who rides by his orphanage each morning, noon, and night. Upon following him, Vasily discovers the man is a prince under the powers of Baba Yaga. Can Vasily rescue his tortured Prince Anton from the witch’s conversion therapy and dance around his pole on May Day?
THE TALES FROM FAIRYLAND ANTHOLOGY
The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland and Holiday Tales from Fairyland paperback
by JOE COSENTINO
Welcome to Fairyland, a magical place where your favorite fairytale characters come out on the other side of the rainbow. Poor and beautiful Cinder offers his clothes to a naked prince in the woods in a twist on the classic Cinderella tale. Eighteen-year-old Gideon Golden, after being thrown out of his home by his homophobic parents, breaks into the cottage of three irresistibly burly men on Bear Mountain. Romance ensues between that stringy guy with a growing appendage and the character with a thing for giants. A handsome but cold-hearted prince bewitches young Kieran into being his captive. Can Gaelen thaw the ice palace and save his love?
Then it’s holiday time in Fairyland. On Halloween, Ichabod Crane, a young schoolteacher, has a boner over muscular farmer Brom Bones. When the residents of Sleepy Hollow balk, the headless horseman rides into town teaching the townsfolk a lesson in acceptance they’ll never forget. Somebody strangled Fritz’s sister Clara with the ribbons of her toe shoes, and Fritz is the top suspect. When hunky Cavalier turns sweet on sweet Fritz, it’s time for the dancing private investigator to question everyone involved with Clara and the Nutcracker to find out who killed Clara? At Winter Solstice, can orphan Vasily rescue a tortured prince from Baba Yaga, releasing him from the witch’s conversion therapy, and dance around the prince’s pole on May Day?
Praise for The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland, the first Tales from Fairyland novella, published by Dreamspinner Press:
“This is a brilliant work, filled with imaginative twists and sly asides. This is adult literature, overflowing with sometimes gentle but often biting humor, and these fairy tales take on a new edginess without ever losing the morality underpinning each story. The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland gets my highest recommendation! If I could give it more than 5 Stars I would. Bravo, sir, bravo!” GGR Reviews
“Sometimes you are lucky enough to find an author that ticks every box you want as a reader, today I’m that lucky reader….a great saucy, fun collection and highly recommended.” Three Books over the Rainbow
“the stories are all well done and smart, engaging, funny and sweet.” Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
“The Naked Prince and Other tales from Fairyland is a fun, hilarious collection of stories. Joe outdid himself taking old favorites from our childhood and putting a grown-up spin on them….If you like gay princes, sexy bears, giants, reporters, fairy tales, comedy, suspense, and, sweet, fun man-sex, this is for you.” Cathy Brockman Romance
“If you haven’t read anything by Cosentino, you don’t know what you are missing. His humor and penchant for drama bring these old favorites a new life as he ventures deep into Fairyland….If you love fairytales, you’ve got to read the naughty versions – they are even better!” Joyfully Jay Reviews
“I was most surprised by the author’s sense of humor and his ability to get me to not only laugh out loud, but actually to “belly laugh.” I highly recommend this to audiobook lovers, and especially to those who loved fairy tales in their childhood.” Hearts on Fire Reviews
“In this wickedly entertaining take on classic fairy tales, Joe Cosentino gives us four short stories full of all the characters you remember from storybooks – Cinderella, Pinocchio, Goldilocks, Captain Hook, Jack and the Beanstalk, Prince Charming and many more – but fair warning: This ain’t your childhood Cinderella. Welcome to a world where it isn’t Pinocchio’s nose that grows when he tells a lie. Goldilocks discovers three sexy daddy bears in the woods and ‘someone’s been sleeping in my bed’ takes on a whole other connotation. Jack is ‘very nimble’ but sadly also ‘amazingly quick’ and Prince Charming dons ‘palace protection’ for hot sex with Cinder. Extra bonus points for this wonderful quip: ‘I always suspected he had more down his throat than a frog.’” Gay Book Reviews
Joe Cosentino is the author of six novellas published by Dreamspinner Press: The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Open Skye Book Reviews Audiobook of the Month); the In My Heart series: An Infatuation & A Shooting Star; and the Bobby and Paolo Holiday Stories: A Home for the Holidays, The Perfect Gift, and The First Noel; the Nicky and Noah mysteries: Drama Queen (Divine Magazine’s Favorite LGBT Mystery), Drama Muscle (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention), Drama Cruise, Drama Luau, Drama Detective, Drama Fraternity; the Cozzi Cove series (NineStar Press): Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention/TBR Pile Book of the Month), Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, Cozzi Cove: Stepping Out, Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings, and Cozzi Cove: Happy Endings; and the Jana Lane mysteries: Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll, and Rag Doll (The Wild Rose Press). As an actor, Joe appeared in principal roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Jason Robards, and Holland Taylor. He received his Master of Fine Arts degree from Goddard College, Master’s degree from SUNY New Paltz, and is currently a happily married college professor/department chair residing in New York State. http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com
Excerpt of Holiday Tales from Fairyland, Tales from Fairyland Book 2, by Joe Cosentino
The sun streamed in from the window and covered Vasily’s olive-colored face. He ran to the window, jumped onto the stool, and leaned out as far as he could. As he had done every day that week, he gazed at the mysterious young man on a horse who rode by at sunup as if to announce the morning, at noon to proclaim midday, and at sunset to warn of the darkness of night.
Vasily felt his heart race as he gazed at the mystery man’s wide shoulders and muscular frame housed in a white tunic, britches, and flowing cape. His long jet-black hair flew behind him and his cherry cheeks seemed to burn in the frozen air as the man’s white horse sped him along the road past the orphanage.
Vasily cried out as the horse jumped over a frozen tree stump and came crashing down onto its side with its rider toppling onto his back nearby. He leapt off the stool, ran out of the kitchen and down the long, echoing hallway. Since everyone else was in the dining room, he flung open the heavy metal front door, and raced across the icy front lawn to the road. Though the horse had risen on shaky legs, the young man lay prostrate on the icy ground. Vasily tied the horse to the post. Then he struggled to lift the unconscious man into his arms and carried him inside the orphanage. Once in the kitchen, Vasily gently rested him on the rocking chair near the stone fireplace. After retrieving his blanket from the basement and quickly returning to the kitchen, Vasily covered the rider, and brought some hot tea from the fireplace. Then Vasily sat next to him on the stool and stroked the young man’s cold cheek until it was warm.
The stranger’s emerald eyes opened.
“You’re safe here,” Vasily said in a soothing voice. “Have some tea.” After the man drank the tea and Vasily returned the cup to the table, he said, “Are you feeling well?”
“I am now.”
Vasily couldn’t help noticing the man’s vacant, melancholy gaze. “You’re in the orphanage. Your horse is tied up outside.”
He started to rise but then sat again.
“You can rest here as long as you like. Are you hungry?”
He nodded. After Vasily served him breakfast, the man said, “That was delicious.”
“Thank you.” Vasily rested the plate on the table. “You took a nasty fall.”
“Yes, I guess I did.”
“Why do you ride your horse past our orphanage every morning, noon, and night?”
“I am following my instructions.”
Vasily had heard of the witch who lived at the tip of Yagaville. He wondered why she didn’t get a sundial. “What else do you do for her—besides riding to signal the morning, afternoon, and night?”
“I live in her cottage.”
“Do you like living there?”
“Then why do you stay?”
Vasily’s heart went out to the man who was clearly bewitched. “Why do you go back there?”
“It is Baba Yaga’s will.”
“Why not stay here? I’ll ask Father Boris if we can use another worker at the orphanage. If he meets you, I’m sure he’ll say yes.”
The man stood. “I must go.”
A tear stained his eye. He hesitated a moment. “I can’t.”
Vasily reached for his thick forearm. “At least tell me your name?”
“It has been a pleasure to meet you, Anton. I’m Vasily.”
He took Vasily’s hands and stared blankly into his eyes. “Thank you. You are a source of warmth for someone buried in ice. I hope our paths cross again.”
“So do I!”
When he was gone, Vasily hurried to the window and watched him ride off.
Giveaway: Post a comment about why you love fairytales. The one that sets us off into Fairyland will receive an Amazon gift code for The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland/Tales from Fairyland Book 1 audiobook, by Joe Cosentino, published by Dreamspinner Press, performed by Joel Leslie (Favorite Audiobook of the Month on Open Skye Book Reviews!). http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Naked-Prince-and-Other-Tales-from-Fairyland-Audiobook/B01M667L7A/ref=a_search_c4_1_1_srImg?qid=1477080276&sr=1-1