Title: Hiro Loves Kite (Paper Stars #2)
Author: Lauren Nicolle Taylor
Published By: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication Date: August 27, 2018
Genres: Historical, Young Adult
We offer our wounds and scars. Understanding that’s part of what makes us beautiful.
Nora finally has her beloved sister Frankie back but that’s just the beginning of their struggles. She must now become Kite. A stronger, more independent version of herself. A King. A guardian.
And Kettle has Kite’s heart. She gives it freely. But as he holds it, dear and close like a lost treasure, something holds him back: a feeling that he doesn’t deserve good things. A looming shadow that threatens to separate them. Kettle must accept that he is also Hiro: A Japanese American with every right to happiness and freedom.
Because Hiro loves Kite. And Kite won’t wait forever for him to tell her.
But they’re standing on icy ground. As the leverage they had on Kite’s abusive father wavers and life on the street affects Frankie’s health, the challenges threaten to break their bond.
Snow is gathering at the station doors and doubts are piling high. They must rely on each other. Believe in the magic that got them this far. If they don’t, it’s not just their future in jeopardy but the fates of all the street kids in their care. All the Kings.
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Meet Kin (Katsutoshi), a supporting character in my new novel Hiro Loves Kite, which continues the story of Nora and Kettle. Kin is confident, funny and loyal.
Raised by a loving mother and father as a Japanese-American, Kin doesn’t have the same doubts about his background as Kettle (Hiro) who never knew his parents. He’s proud of his heritage and stands tall, both physically and mentally, despite his difficulty in walking.
Many of the young Japanese-American men interned during World War Two enlisted to prove their loyalty to the government. Kin’s father was one of those men and was sadly killed in action. This layered more pride across Kin’s shoulders and solidified his surety that he deserved his place in American society.
When Kin’s mother died of tuberculosis in the camps, his anger towards their treatment fuelled a fire that has never stopped burning. But where Kettle has always feared authority, Kin defies it openly. Looking the men who throw insults his way right in the eye and throwing those insults back. It gets him in trouble. It got him in a fight that nearly killed him. But he’s a survivor and a sweet talker and his rehabilitation is going well at the returned servicemen’s home he managed to talk his way into.
Kin’s humor in the face of adversity has always got him through and it’s lifted his best friend up in the worst of times. He considers it his job to get Kettle to lighten the hell up and he takes it very seriously.
But underneath the jokes and bravado is a guy with a big heart. Kin may pretend to be self-absorbed but he wants nothing more than for Kettle (Hiro) to be happy. And if that gets him a little extra something in the process, well, he wouldn’t say no to that.
About the Author
Lauren is the bestselling author of THE WOODLANDS SERIES and the award-winning YA novel NORA & KETTLE (Gold medal Winner for Multicultural fiction, Independent Publishers Book Awards 2017).
She has a Health Science degree and an honors degree in Obstetrics and Gynecology. A full time writer, hapa and artist, Lauren lives in the tucked away, Adelaide hills with her husband and three children.
Gust Post by Lauren
Why I wrote Hiro Loves Kite
There were a few reasons for writing Hiro Loves Kite. All good ones. All necessary ones. The first being that I had just come out of a professional relationship that had left me feeling creatively hand cuffed for two years. I needed to write just to write. Not worry about whether it would be published or where it was going. I needed to get back to the writer I used to be before this happened. So I returned to the last work I produced pre-handcuffs. Nora and Kettle. Straight after I’d finished that book, I’d quickly written an outline for if I ever chose to continue their story. I searched my computer for it and luckily, it was still there waiting for me. The outline refreshed my memory and then the words just flew from my fingertips.
The second and more important reason was that Nora and Kettle needed their story continued. Sometimes a story just hangs in the background. Lurking. Pitching itself forward whenever your brain has a story gap. At the end of the first book, hope was pinned to the sky. Nora had confronted her father and was taking steps toward independence, Kettle had just started to understand his feelings for Nora and was coming closer to acceptance of his heritage and Frankie was still missing. And although, I intended the ending to be open. The characters kept calling out for their story to be completed.
I wanted to know, just as much as the readers who had contacted me over the last few years, what happened next. Did Nora and Kettle find Frankie? Did their relationship develop into something more? Did Kin recover? Would Christopher Deere ever get his comeuppance?
And now I know! If you want to find out, well, I guess you might have to have a read of Hiro Loves Kite.
I hope y’all have enjoyed this post, it’s so much fun putting these together for y’all in conjunction with Xpresso Book Tours, if you’re a blogger you should really check them out!