Blog Tour, Excerpt & Giveaway:
Looking Past
By Michael Bailey

Unconditional Series, Book 3

Ten years ago, Ben Worthington ran away from home after a violent confrontation with his father. He’s lived with the anger and resentment that confrontation caused ever since.

To the outside world, Dylan Barrows has it all together. But he struggles with the guilt from his inability to protect his older brother from his abuser.

Tragedy brings them together, and an unknown shared history threatens to tear them apart before they can begin looking past their issues…and finally find love.

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Exclusive Excerpt:

His smile was gentle. He raised his right hand to my head, and I leaned into it like a cat. “Whatever you’re thinking, stop. You’re here now, with me. We won’t do anything you’re not comfortable with.”

I was at a loss for words. I stood mesmerized as Ben took a step back, giving me the space he sensed I needed. Something passed between us, an unspoken agreement that somehow settled my jangled nerves even more. I crossed my arms over my midsection, taking hold of the hem of my shirt, and pulled it up and over my head. I threw it onto the floor and stood still in front of him. I felt exposed, yet somehow, with him, not embarrassed.

He smiled at me tenderly, then, without a sound, lifted his own shirt over his head, and threw it to join mine. Then, he reached for his belt buckle and undid the latch. Pulling it through the belt loops of his pants, he tossed it to join our discarded shirts. Without taking his eyes off me, he undid the button on his jeans, unzipped his zipper, and slid them down and off his legs, pulling his socks off with them. These, too, he tossed to join the growing pile of clothes.

He stood in front of me for a moment, allowing me to scan the length of his body. It was clear he worked out, but where his brother was about bulk, Ben was about definition. His chest and abs seemed to be cut from marble. A small smattering of hair started in the center of his pecs and traveled down his stomach to disappear below the waistband of his navy-blue boxer-briefs, which strained around his bulge. His defined, muscled calves had a dusting of hair the same color as that on his chest. Even his feet were sexy.

I became self-conscious for a moment and fought the urge to cover myself. In no way did I compare to him physically. I suffered from the same body shape as my brother—skinny with no definition. How could someone like Ben find me attractive?

He stepped around me toward the bed, breaking me from my inspection. I watched, heart rate speeding up, as he pulled the covers down and slid in. Scooting to the far side, he held the blankets up and asked, “Coming?”

I toed off my shoes and slid my jeans off, followed by my socks. I inhaled deeply, and held it for a moment. Then I slowly made my way to the bed. Once I was in, Ben dropped the covers over the both of us. He leaned up and over me, stopping for a moment. Smiling down at me, he whispered, “I’m glad you’re here. I think I’ve been waiting for this for a long time.”

Then he leaned forward, softly kissing my forehead. He reached toward the nightstand light and pulled the cord. The room was bathed in semi-darkness. I felt the bed shift as he moved back to his side. He rolled onto his side and placed a hand on my chest, just over my heart. “Your heart’s beating so fast,” he stated.

“I know.”


No one will ever want you!

“It’s just been awhile since…”

“Me too. But it’s okay. I don’t want to rush into anything. We take things at our own speed. Nothing else matters.”

Somehow that comforted me.

I rolled onto my side, my back to his front. His hand never left my chest. I raised my arm, covering his hand on with my own, and twined our fingers together. I scooted closer to him. He flexed the arm draped over me, pulling me in even closer. His chest hair tickled at my back, his body enveloping my smaller frame. And in the protective cocoon of his body, the heat of it virtually covering my own, I found serenity.

Enter the Giveaway:

To celebrate Michael’s new release, we are giving away 3 e-copies of Looking Past!

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About the Author

So, I tried to get away with a simple, “Hi, I’m Michael.” But, nnnnoooo, that wasn’t an option. So here we go.

Before getting into M/M romance, I was a total nerd. Sci-Fi, fantasy (not THAT. Sword, sorcery, that kind of thing), comics, toys. You name it, if it screamed dork, I probably did it. I was a homodork, and proud.

In addition to that, I’ve dreamed of writing since I was eleven years old when I wrote a truly awful Choose-Your-Own-Adventure. It sold exactly zero copies. My mother may have a copy lying around somewhere. Mothers keep that kind of thing. I also wrote fantasy (Yes, THAT kind: guy meets guy, they fall in love, have the white picket fence and live happily-ever-after)

I would walk into a book store and peruse all two shelves of their gay selection, and would always come away disappointed. The books were depressing, nothing spoke to me about love and happiness.

Then I read one book. I won’t tell you what book, but it had two handsome men and a dog on the cover. I read it in one sitting, and was hooked. I fell in love with the M/M genre to moment I read that first sentence, and I have been in love with it since.

I am astounded at the limitless story potential within one genre. You can literally do anything within the genre, from comedy to paranormal, mystery to sci-fi, fantasy to straight out romance, and everything in between.

Life took control, as it often does, and the dream of writing was put on hold. Then, in November of 2016, I took a leap of faith, and began writing my first novel as part of the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) competition. The goal of the competition is to write a 50,000-word novel in a thirty-day period.

I failed.

However, on the advice of a friend, he “pushed through”. And so, in September of 2017, my first novel was be published.

I have always believed in the power of the written word, and the ability for one story to touch the reader in such a way that it can literally change the course of their life. This one book opened up a world of possibilities for a middle-aged guy from Toledo, Ohio, and is what ultimately led me here. And, I am happy to say, I never looked back.

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