Hello Internet! I’m Lex Chase and Nina was awesome to let me come by today! I’m here to share a bit about my upcoming anthology Checkmate Ever After from DSP Publications. It’s a story about the dizzying highs, the terrifying lows, and the creamy middle of disgraced superhero Memphis Rook and his rise to redemption alongside his sidekick/boyfriend Hogarth Dawson.
One of the most memorable scenes the first story, Pawn Takes Rook, is after Rook uses is ultimate secret superpower he has to restore his energy. In order to do that, he pretty much eats everything in sight with no care for what it is. I’ve included the particular excerpt below to give you an idea. But things like dill pickle chips including the juice, caramel sauce straight from the jar, bags of shredded cheese, jalapenos, and even a box of Golden Grahams; nothing is off limits to Rook’s iron-lined stomach.
So I decided to flex my wannabe chef skills and Googlefoo to wrap up the Checkmate Ever After Tour with The Superheroic Cookbook using ingredients found in the story. Divided into Appetizer, Entrée, and Dessert, I hope you try them!
Tostitos Rapido Pizza
When you have superhero hunger, but not a lot of time, you can toss this together in a jiffy. Are you craving cream cheese? Salsa? And….mayonnaise? Um. Perfect for a party, or perfect three-second snack for Rook.
Find the recipe here!
Cornflakes Crusted Grilled PB&J
Were you expecting Prime Rib? Hah! Rook and Hogarth dine on Hogarth’s limited budget. So there’s a whole lot of PB&J for meals. But I’d figure once in a while they’d like to add some spice to their epicurean frat boy delights. Cornflakes? Why not!
Find the recipe here!
Pretzel M&M Cookies
The love of pretzel M&Ms bind Rook and Hogarth together stronger than their love for each other. One would theorize that Rook actually draws his power from them much like Popeye and spinach. Hogarth always keeps a stash of the salty chocolate treat in the last place Rook would consider: Inside his broken Xbox.
Find the recipe here!
Excerpt from Pawn Takes Rook
I jogged up the steps, then cracked open my squeaky door, only to be greeted with the esteemed sight of Rook, clad in Pac-Man pajama bottoms that were definitely not mine and little else. I watched as he polished off my gallon jug of milk, tossed it aside, and moved on to the OJ, fresh from the fridge. If you could have seen the utter horror on my face at watching my hard-earned groceries disappear with shocking efficiency, you’d agree with me. One thing was for certain, he didn’t eat double-decker buses, but he pretty much ate everything else! I had to step in before he slurped up the remains of the pickle juice straight from the jar.
I snatched the jar out of his hand, and he looked at me like a swatted puppy. I was onto his game, and he wouldn’t sucker me for sympathy.
“Hey….” he groaned like a five year old denied ice cream.
I squinted at him and frowned. “Do you want to make yourself sick again? I saw you puke your brains out. I’d like it if you’d refrain from decorating my apartment with an explosion of Baskin-Robbins!”
Rook went silent. His lips pursed, his wild eyes narrowed—I should add he had some crazy long lashes. Like that guy in that show about the crazy mysterious island with the smoke monster. Yeah! Guyliner dude!
Anyway, he was about to say something. I could see the train of thought coming to the station. He took a breath, and then broke into a bright superhero grin, blaze of gleaming white against tawny skin.
“You’re sweet, Garth,” he said.
My ears felt hot. I flushed like a freak. At that moment, my feet became really interesting. He stepped past me, rummaged in the pantry for the Golden Grahams, and then poured them straight down his gullet. I spun around and ripped the box from his hand. Tiny squares of tasty goodness showered the floor.
“Hey!” he growled.
“Don’t ‘hey!’ me, bucko!” I snapped at him. “You don’t get to say sweet things to me, show your junk to me, or other sundry flirty things to get your way. You do not get to use my credit card in return for giving me a peep show. You do not get to raid my fridge just because you pay me a compliment. You do not get to waltz into my life and not explain a Goddamned thing to me! Why did you puke, then pass out? Why did you pass out when you saved me? More to the point, why do you goddamn flat fuck fall over all the time?”
Rook crossed his arms and pressed his lips into a thin line. “Will there be anything else you’d like to file with the Complaint Department?” He grinned. “Press one for ‘sit and spin’, and press two for ‘cry me a fucking river’.”
God, this man was absolutely incorrigible. If you can’t beat ’em….
I shook the box of Golden Grahams as a temptation. “Answer my questions, and I’ll show you where I hide the pretzel M&M’s.”
Rook gently took the box from me and shoved his hand into the crinkling plastic. He popped a handful of cereal in his mouth and crunched obnoxiously. “I freaking love the pretzel ones,” he mumbled.
I sat on the counter and watched him scarf down my beloved Golden Grahams. “Why did you puke?”
“That’s appetizing….” he said and scanned the fridge, choosing a bag of shredded cheese.
I pointed a finger and watched him pour the Colby-Jack from the bag into his mouth. “Are you like a gremlin? Can I not feed you after midnight?”
“And you don’t know what DeLoreans are,” he chided, then slurped caramel sauce from the jar.
“Hey. One ’80s reference at a time!” I scolded him. “Answer the question.”
Rook smirked as he popped the tab on a Sprite. “You know how every superhero has some ultimate super-secret power?”
“Yeah?” I said, leaning in eagerly.
“That’s mine,” he said and chugged the soda.
I didn’t get it. “…Puking?”
Rook coughed, and his hand clasped over his nose. Let it go down in the history books the moment I made Memphis Rook snarf on Sprite.
“No!” he gurgled, then coughed wetly. He snorted carbonation up his nose. “Raising the dead….” he said softly.
“Say what, now?” I blurted out. Not the smoothest of things to say at the moment. “But… you’re a fighter.”
His crazy eyes met mine. “You could say I’m a giver too.”
Man, my shoes were seriously interesting at that moment. Wow, never noticed that peculiar dapple of puce paint on the toe. The more I tried to make myself stop blushing like a freak, the worse I made it.
2nd Edition (Books One – Three)
The day disgraced superhero Memphis Rook literally fell into Hogarth Dawson’s lap, you could say it was fate. But the brawny Rook did nearly crush Garth’s pancreas. What started as two ships passing in the night ended on the weirdest adventure of their lives. Together, Rook and Garth form Checkmate, a daring super duo that keeps Axis City safe from a rogue’s gallery of nefarious villains, dastardly masterminds, and a coalition of calamity. Fighting evil wherever it appears—from reality shows to comic book conventions—Checkmate serves up knuckle sandwiches of justice. But by day, they’re a couple of broke losers who can barely afford a burger and navigating a weird thing called a relationship. Ain’t true love grand? Rook and Garth may be in over their heads, and even super heroes fail sometimes, but they’re ready to take a stand when no one else will. Don’t hate the players, because Checkmate owns the game.
1st Edition of Pawn Takes Rook published by Dreamspinner Press, 2013.
1st Edition of Cashing the Reality Check published by Dreamspinner Press, 2013.
1st Edition of Conventional Love published by Dreamspinner Press, 2014.
And the all new fourth novella Miracle in Axis City and bonus short What The Water Gave Me, exclusive to the anthology!
About the Author:
Lex Chase once heard Stephen King say in a commercial, “We’re all going to die, I’m just trying to make it a little more interesting.” Now, she’s on a mission to make the world a hell of a lot more interesting.
Weaving tales of cinematic, sweeping adventure—and depending on how she feels that day—Lex sprinkles in high-speed chases, shower scenes, and more explosions than a Hollywood blockbuster. Her pride is in telling stories of men who kiss as much as they kick ass. If you’re going to march into the depths of hell, it better be beside the one you love.
Lex is a pop culture diva, her DVR is constantly backlogged, and unapologetically loved the ending of Lost. She wouldn’t last five minutes without technology in the event of the apocalypse and has nightmares about refusing to leave her cats behind.
She is grateful for and humbled by all the readers. She knows very well she wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them and welcomes feedback.
You can find in the Intarwebz here:
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Follow the Checkmate Ever After Tour!
12/3 – Tali Spencer
12/7 – Aidee Ladnier
12/12 – Gaylist Book Reviews
12/15 – Checkmate Ever After Release Day!