It’s all about new beginnings this week. It’s the start of a new school year for many students, teachers, and professors – and parents who are no doubt taking on new burdens juggling their kids’ safety with their kids’ ability to keep learning. I love back to school. I love seeing the school supplies and class lists in stores, dreaming about stocking up on pens and folders and notebooks. I don’t because I already have plenty of this stuff. I haven’t needed to buy pens in seven years, but the promise of new pens, a new lunch box, fresh everything… When you’re no longer school age, are there even comparable ways to mark the end of one chapter and the beginning of another? I doubt it.
In my part of Michigan, we’ve had an early start to fall. I’ve been sleeping with the window open while snuggled under a heavy comforter, and I’m loving the idea of making a Rosh Hashanah feast that lets us taste all the best savory flavors of fall. Rosh Hashanah, like back to school, is the start of a new year, but if you’re not Jewish and/or don’t celebrate it, I think there’s still something poignant and magical at the idea of celebrating fall as both the end (of summer, of the harvest season) and the beginning (of a school year, of the cold, lean months). One last hurrah before we all hunker down inside our homes for the next months. And given covid-19 this year, I’m feeling much less angst about the end of dining al fresco at sidewalk cafes than I usually am. In some ways, this was the summer that wasn’t, and the arrival of fall has given me permission to accept it, instead of waking up every day to sunshine and warm weather and fretting over all the summer things I wasn’t getting to do.
This week also marks the general release of The Holiday Detour. It’s been available through my publisher’s website since the beginning of September, but you can now buy it from Amazon and other outlets. For some of you, that’s a blessing, but I encourage you to buy directly from Bold Strokes. You can get an ebook in any format, unlike on Amazon, and you’re supporting the continuation of LGBTQ publishing. (If you want to buy from an LGBTQ bookstore, that’s great, too! There aren’t many left in the U.S., and we need to keep them in business.)
Here are a few words of praise for the book:
This was the first romance I’ve read that features a genderqueer person in a leading role…I really think the author did a great job of addressing tough topics like body issues before the couple was intimate.-Constance Milton
I also enjoyed to learn more about gender fluidity cause it’s something hard to grasp if you don’t have any experience or know someone. So all in all very well done and thank you!-Lena Mitterhuber
Kolven is a talented writer, no doubt; The Holiday Detour is a compelling and entertaining romance, for sure. This book showcases her ability to use dialog effectively and masterfully. She can create tension and drive the plot forward in the most amusing and engrossing ways with her use of dialog. The witty banter between Dana and Charlie is so delightful and charming; readers will laugh out loud at their lively conversations.-Deb McCall, The Lesbian Book Blog (Read the full review)
It wasn’t that long ago that the majority of Americans didn’t even know what nonbinary was, and it would have been almost unthinkable to see a nonbinary person in a romance. Kolven deserves a lot of credit for bringing another layer of inclusivity to the queer romance world.-Thomas J. West III (Read the full review)
Shana Tova to all my Jewish friends!