Author Charlie Cochet is back and this time to talk about her upcoming release, Catch a Tiger by the Tail. She talks about the book, the characters and some of the background. Anxious about the release? This will give you something to think about.
Please be aware that there are no explicit spoilers or questions relating to the story, but if you are sensitive about these things, read at your own risk!
Hiya Charlie and welcome back to the blog. This time we’re here to talk about your upcoming release: Catch a Tiger by the Tail. The newest book in the THIRDS series. What can you tell us about the story?
Thank you so much for having me! Catch a Tiger by the Tail is Calvin Summers and Ethan Hobbs’s book. Calvin and Ethan are part of our Destructive Delta crew, and up until now our quietest couple. Although they get screen time in the previous books and we get some insight into who they are and their relationship, in this book we really get to delve into their characters and their lives.
What was your main goal with writing Catch a Tiger by the Tail? What did you want to accomplish?
With Catch a Tiger by the Tail I wanted to give readers a chance to get to know Calvin and Ethan the way they’ve gotten to know the other guys on Destructive Delta. To understand Ethan and his condition a little better. Ethan has Selective Mutism and Social Anxiety, and although it’s something he struggles with on a daily basis, he still leads a fulfilling life. He’s learned not to let his disability define him. I hope that through Ethan, I manage to bring a little more awareness to Selective Mutism.
Was there a theme or themes you wanted to explore while writing this story?
At the heart of this story is the strength of love, and not just romantic love, but the bond of friendship and love. Unlike the other male characters on Destructive Delta, Ethan’s family remains the way it has since he was born. He has his parents and two big brothers. Although their home life is far from perfect, their family bond is strong. No matter what happens the brothers are there for the family. Despite Rafe and Seb’s ongoing feud, they’re fierce protectors of their family, and are always there when needed. With Calvin and Ethan, we have the deep love they have for each other as friends, and then more. These two have had each other’s backs since childhood, and nothing will break that bond.
Calvin and Ethan are two characters that haven’t had it easy even now Ethan has certain professional and personal obstacles to overcome. Were the struggles the two had to overcome hard two write?
They were, because the initial THIRDS series is about the team. Although the majority of the books are from Dex and Sloane’s POVs, we always have the team. When it’s Dex and Sloane, there’s always going to be Tony, Ash, and Cael, because they’re connected as friends and family. Calvin and Ethan is a little different because they don’t spend as much time with the team as the other guys because of Ethan’s anxiety. The team goes out to Dekatria, they go to bars, and clubs, parties in someone’s apartment. Calvin and Ethan’s presence always depends on how Ethan is feeling at the time. Which is why in Catch a Tiger, the majority of the time we see the rest of the guys is either at work, or instanced where it’s just the team, like where they’re helping Sloane move into Dex’s house. There is a couple of nights out that Ethan is able to attend, but even then one in particular proves to be a bit much for him.
And speaking of struggles, was it Catch a Tiger by the Tail a hard book to write compared to other books in the series?
They were, because out of all the guys, these two have had it rough. Not to say that Sloane and Ash haven’t, with their time in the facility, but Calvin and Ethan have been fighting all their lives just to survive. Whether it was at school, in the neighborhood they grew up in, at home, and then as agents. They’ve never stopped fighting. This book was emotional for me because both these men have suffered so much at the hands of others, yet they never gave up. Calvin’s childhood was heartbreaking, and then aside his home life, every day he would face a battle, either to protect his friendship with Ethan, or just keep them safe. With Ethan, his struggles came from his inability to help Calvin. How despite his size and strength, he’s had to depend on his Human best friend to fight for them. He carried a lot of guilt when he was a child. Their journey, sharing that in the story was difficult, but very necessary so readers could see what made them the men they are today.
It was also more difficult because I had to always be aware of Ethan, about what he could and couldn’t do, what he’d be comfortable with. His anxiety and mutism isn’t a plot mechanism. It’s part of who he is. It couldn’t be turned on and off for convenience. Every scene had to be approached from his POV and how he would react. Writing Ethan was also challenging because he only speaks to a select number of people. So a good deal of his dialogue is in his head. We get to read what his replies and thoughts are, but I needed to be aware of the characters around him that wouldn’t be hearing those thoughts.
Humor is a big part of your stories and there are some fun parts in this story. Where do you find your inspiration for the more humorous scenes in this book?
I love humor, and this series especially allows for a good deal of that, though the majority of it is usually instigated by our Cheesy Doodle crunching menace Dexter J. Daley. Usually when I’m writing Dex, it all sort of just happens. He seems to attract the crazy. He’s one of those guys you can put in a room with nothing but four walls and a floor, and he’ll find a way to entertain himself and anyone else.
Can you tell us what the biggest change is for both Ethan and Calvin at the end of the story? Of course without giving too much away.
The two of them go through a lot in this book, but Calvin most of all. He’s always been the suffer in silence type, and after years of it, it’s finally taking its toll on him and his relationship with Ethan, so his biggest change is in learning to open up to his best friend, learning that he can lean on Ethan when he needs to. That’s it’s okay to open up. He also learns that he and Ethan are no longer alone. They have friends who care deeply and understand. With Ethan, he learns that change isn’t always something to be feared. Sometimes change can be for the better.
Catch a Tiger by the Tail is focused on Calvin and Ethan as a potential couple, but the story also falls in a bigger plot as a whole, that now spans several books. What can you tell us about where the series is going?
I’m very excited about where the series is going, and readers will get a better idea of that by the end of Smoke & Mirrors. For me, a story’s end is never truly the end, and when I first started writing this series, I wanted the option to have it branch off into other smaller series, so I have two different series in mind that I hope to continue with after the initial THIRDS series is wrapped up.
Are there any fun facts that you can share that happened while writing Catch a Tiger by the Tail?
I got to watch a lot of fun videos on big cats. Tigers especially are very expressive cats. And I watched a couple of videos on jaguars swimming which prompted the pool scene at the THIRDS. The idea of Sloane doggie paddling with his head held high and his tail poking up over the water made me laugh, so I had to write it in.
Catch a Tiger by the Tail is the sixth book in the series that now spans two years since the first book was published. What did you learn most in the two years of writing the series?
I learned how to find the right balance. At least I think so. LOL. It’s definitely challenging, keeping everything the balanced. The stories have more than one plot going on at a time, plus romance, friendship, family drama, action, suspense. Smoke & Mirrors has been the most challenging by far, emotionally and in terms of plot and drama. A lot of what’s happened so far has been leading to this book, so it’s no wonder that I ended up having to reschedule my deadline twice.
Were there any major influences on the story?
I’ve had several readers contact me thanking me for having a character with Selective Mutism. I wanted to make sure that in this book I did my best to do Ethan and those with Selective Mutism justice. I’ve also had people close to me who suffered from severe social anxiety, so I wanted to show the kind of struggles they face, but also give hope.
Having read the story, the ending of Catch a Tiger by the Tail is quite evil. What will readers make of the ending and how do you think they will react?
I’ve already had emails filled with various exclamation and questions marks. LOL. I know many readers hate cliffhangers with a passion. What I can say is not to fear, the cliffhanger isn’t Ethan or Calvin’s. I know that doesn’t help much. The fact is, that sometimes it’s necessary for the story. Without that ending, I couldn’t have started Smoke & Mirrors the way I did, and the beginning of Smoke & Mirrors is key to the story. Luckily, Smoke & Mirrors is due for a July/Aug release.
What can you share with us about the next story in the series: Smoke and Mirrors?
Like I said, a lot of what’s been happening in the THIRDS series has been leading to this book. There have been hints dropped along the way, and now everything is revealed. It’s a pretty intense ride. As the title suggests, there’s been a lot of secrecy and hidden truths. In this book, Dex and Sloane’s love is put through the test as everything comes to light, changing their lives irrevocably.
Is there a song that would be the soundtrack or theme song for this book?
Each THIRDS book has a playlist, and the Catch a Tiger playlist will be revealed during the Catch a Tiger blog tour. Readers can find out all about the blog stops here. I can share one of the songs on the list. Shiver Shiver by Walk the Moon.
What would you tell readers to convince them to read Catch a Tiger by the Tail or the series as a whole?
I’ve had a good number of readers who put off the series because it’s a shifter series and they weren’t really into shifter books. Once they gave it a go, they’ve told me how happy they were to read it. I would tell those who aren’t big into shifters not to be put off by that. This series is different. Being a shifter is secondary. It’s a part of the characters but not who they are. In this world, Humans and Therians (shifters) coexist, but like any society, there are laws. It has a more contemporary feel than a fantasy one because the reason for the shifters comes from scientific means rather than fantasy. Which is why there are no avian shifters or small animals. Mostly, it’s just a fun series with eighties music, cheese snacks, sexy alphas in uniforms with plenty of action, adventure, drama, humor, and romance.
Charlie was born in Havana, Cuba at the Hospital of the Sacred Heart to a couple of hipster parents. In 1980–feeling it was time to get out of Dodge, her parents scooped her up and embarked on a perilous journey, boarding a fishing vessel called the Admiral Backman which along with 231 other folks, carried Charlie and her parents through stormy seas to the land of opportunity. Charlie spent the next twelve years in New Jersey where she fell in love with bagels, New York pizza, and learned to pronounce coffee as ‘cawfee’. Just before her 14th birthday, her folks decided to pack up the family and head for warmer weather.
After graduating high school in South Florida, Charlie attended The Art Institute of Ft. Lauderdale where she earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Media Arts & Animation. Not long after, at the age of 23, life whisked her away to England where she lived for 11 years, thriving in the creative culture of London while drinking tea and learning to say ‘chips’ when she meant fries.
Charlie is an avid supporter of LGBT rights and looks forward to the day when gender is not an issue. M/M author by day, artist by night, she is quick to succumb to the whispers of her wayward muse, and no star is out of reach when following her passion. From hardboiled detectives and society gentleman, to angels and elves, there’s bound to be plenty of mischief for her heroes to find themselves in, and plenty of romance, too!
Currently residing in South Florida, Charlie dreams of the day where the temperature might be something other than hot, hot, and boy, it’s hot! When Charlie isn’t writing, she can usually be found reading, drawing, or watching movies. She runs on coffee, thrives on music, and loves to hear from readers. If you’d like to connect with Charlie, just drop her an email, or find her on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Google Plus.
**Keep tuned for the review!