Guest Post and Giveaway: What’s In A Name? by Pat Henshaw

Barista Jimmy Patterson thinks it’s a good idea to get rip-roaring drunk on his birthday after he’s dumped by his boyfriend. When the burly owner of Stonewall’s Bar rescues Jimmy, the night starts to look up.

Now Jimmy just wants to know the bartender’s first name since he’s worn a different name tag every time Jimmy’s seen him. “Guy” Stone gives Jimmy seven guesses, one for each night he takes Jimmy out on a date.

While Jimmy’s trying to come up with his name, he’s distracted by the destruction of his coffee shop and what looks more and more like a hate crime.

You can read my review of the book here.

Guest Post:
Since Jimmy is barista in the story, I wanted Pat to talk a bit about the perfect cup of coffee, from Jimmy’s point of view. What she sent is so much better. Get a little sneak peek of the next book in the series, and a cup of coffee I’d gladly drink. Read and enjoy!
I don’t think Jimmy has a “perfect” cup of coffee. As a barista, he’s always experimenting with his coffee drinks and has a “perfect” cup depending on the time of day, his mood, and the things he has to get done during the rest of the day.

Since I’m a tea drinker, I relied on barista Todd at Cafe Dantorels to help me with the coffee parts of the book. Todd is a terrific guy and was a wonderful resource for this book. Todd’s counterpart Mark at Dantorels demonstrated how to end up with a rose pattern on the top of a drink, a very tricky maneuver I have to say!

So instead of having Jimmy describe his coffee, I’d rather have architect and interior designer Fredi Zimmer, Jimmy’s best friend and main character of the sequel, give his impressions of the drink Jimmy designed for him. This is from the first chapter of Redesigning Max:

“I sat back and took a sip of my namesake drink, Fredi’s Feast, an interesting mix of cinnamon and cardamom with a heady dollop of whipped cream. It was foamy and frothy, but lusty underneath. I was a little surprised at how my best friend Jimmy Patterson saw me, or at least which flavors he’d used in translating my personality into a drink. Lusty? Just the word made me tingle.”

Stonewall [Saloon] was chaos when I got there. Guy and another bartender were mixing drinks as fast as they could. I squeezed in at the end of the bar near the hatchway and sat on an abandoned stool there.

I didn’t think Guy had seen me come in, so when there was a lull in the frenetic pace and he was nearly within arm’s reach, I called out, “What’s a guy gotta do to get a drink in this place?”

Guy looked up, grinned at me, and yelled back, “Fuck the bartender.”

A slim man sitting next to me perked up, gave Guy the once-over, and yelled, “Okay!”

Guy’s startled gaze met mine, and we broke out laughing.

The man next to me sighed and slumped over his beer. “I knew it was too good to be true,” he mumbled.

I patted him on the shoulder.

“Maybe next time,” I commiserated with him.

“Right,” he answered glumly.

Bonus Scene:
Falling in love in your 30s, I’m here to tell you, is the shits. Take it from me. You’re rolling along, minding your own business–in my case as the working owner of Stonewall Saloon–and then wham! You think you’re immune, especially since you see so many crap-ass guys doing stupid shit every night. Maybe it’s the bar. Who knows? I never thought good guys went to bars a lot until I met Jimmy.

Along about November a year or so ago, Jimmy Patterson and his stupid as fuck boyfriend started dropping by Stonewall three, four times a week around 8 or 9 and staying sometimes until closing, but mostly for a couple, three hours.

The boyfriend, this asshole named Alex, would parade in wearing whatever passed as the latest style and park Jimmy on a stool at the bar.

Now, see, Jimmy’s the real friendly type. Shoot, he was even nice to Gus, a regular left over from when my Grandpa was owner and bartender. Gus can’t see or hear too well now and for some reason gets on the nerves of my younger customers all the time. Mostly because you gotta yell and repeat what you say to him about a million times. And then he still doesn’t get what you said.

Jimmy never blinked an eye at Gus. Just treated him like all the other guys who sat down next to him to bullshit.

“Good boy, that Jimmy,” Gus’d tell me over and over when Jimmy and Dickhead came in.

I had to agree. During slow periods, Jimmy and I’d talk about all sorts of things. He wanted to open a coffee shop in Old Town, around where Stonewall is, and asked me questions about places along the strip. We even talked quarterlies during tax time and shit like that.

There’s a few queer-run places now the big city guys have discovered us, and Jimmy wanted to know how they got along. Yeah, sure, there’s some resistance from blowhards like Tommy Thompson and a few others, but mostly we’re a live and let live kinda place.

At Christmas we laughed about some of the stupid ass holiday decorations along Main Street. Jimmy’d even asked if I was going to decorate. My answer? Blow me. For a minute it looked like he considered it.

The more we talked, the more lost I was. Got to the point I told one of the other bartenders to come get me if I was in the back when Jimmy came in. Go figure. Never done that in my life.

In the meantime, every time they were here, Dickhead the boyfriend was making the rounds. I caught him a few times sucking cock in the back. Made me so mad I nearly hit him up one side and down the other. I didn’t though cuz I didn’t want Jimmy to stop coming in.

It bothered me though. You know, one of those moral dilemmas. Should I tell Jimmy or not? So I started asking around.

Didn’t help when I learned Jimmy’d moved into a condo with the Dickhead. What kind of friend tells a guy his boyfriend’s a scumbag? On the other hand, what kind of friend keeps the news to himself? Moral dilemma, like I said.

Okay, so we’re coming up to Jimmy’s birthday, which I know because after I had another bartender card him, I wrote the date down. I decide to give the Dickhead one more chance. See if he could man up on the big night. I knew a bunch of Jimmy’s friends were gonna throw him a party at Stonewall, you know try to get him drunk, all the regular crap. So I’d better be seeing Dickhead stand up and act right.

By that point, I’ve already been smacked around by Jimmy-love and am ready to beat down walls to make him happy on his big day. He’s never gonna see his 20s again and he’s feeling the pain. At least that’s what he’s said. I just want the guy to be happy, real happy.

What happened? Well, yeah, you gotta read Jimmy’s side of the story. I mean, don’t listen to me. I can’t tell a story about love. Shit, I can barely tell a clean joke. Just listen to Jimmy. He’s got it covered.

About Pat:
Born in the Heartland of Nebraska, Pat Henshaw has made America hers by living in Texas, Colorado, Northern Virginia, and Northern California. She has found joy in visiting Mexico, Canada, Europe, Nicaragua, Thailand, and Egypt, and relishes trips to Rome, Italy, and Eugene, Oregon, to see family.

Pat has spent her life surrounded by words: Teaching English composition at the junior college level; writing book reviews for newspapers, magazines, and websites; helping students find information as a librarian; and promoting PBS television programs.

Two of her fondest memories are touching time when she put her hands on the pyramids and experiencing pure whimsy when she interviewed Caroll Spinney (Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch). Her triumphs are raising two incredible daughters who daily amaze her with their power and compassion. Her supportive husband keeps her grounded in reality when she threatens to drift away writing fiction.
Book Website:

Buy Links:
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Tour Stops:
28-Jan: Molly Lolly, Inked Rainbow Reads
4-Feb: Hearts on Fire, Andrew Q. Gordon, Amanda C. Stone
11-Feb: Multitasking Mommas, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, The Novel Approach
18-Feb: Love Bytes, 3 Chicks After Dark, Bayou Book Junkie
25-Feb: Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Kristy’s Brain Food
4-Mar: Dawn’s Reading Nook, MM Good Book Reviews, Velvet Panic, Christy Loves 2 Read
11-Mar: Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Prism Book Alliance
18-Mar: Crystal’s Many Reviewers, Rebecca Cohen Writes

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