✨ Interview ✨
Joe Cosentino, congratulations on the audio book release of the eleventh novel in your award-winning and popular Nicky and Noah gay cozy comedy mystery series.
Thank you. I’m making the yuletide gay. (smile)
So many readers loved your Jana Lane mystery series (The Wild Rose Press) and The Player, Player Piano Mysteries Book 1 (Dreamspinner Press). What do you say to readers who might be surprised that the Nicky and Noah mysteries are quite different?
I’d tell them that my Nicky and Noah mysteries have won many awards, and they sell just as well if not better. I’d ask them to give Nicky and Noah a chance, as my mother said to me as a kid about escarole and beans—now my favorite soup.
Tell us about Drama Christmas, the eleventh novel in the series, which is now also an audio book.
In Drama Christmas hunky and hilarious armchair sleuth Professor of Play Directing Nicky Abbondanza (Bob Crotchitch), his handsome husband Associate Professor of Acting Noah Oliver (Nephew Freddy), their son Taavi (Tiny Tim), best friends Department Chair Martin Anderson (Scrooge/Carol) and Ruben Markinson (Marley/Ghost of the Lover of the Past), and Martin’s sassy office assistant Shayla Johnson (Housekeeper) star in a musical version of Scrooge’s A Christmas Carol at Treemeadow College, entitled Call Me Carol! The show proves that every Christmas needs a good Carol. Nicky’s favorite target, Detective Manuello (Ghost of the Lover of the Present), and Nicky and Noah’s both sets of wacky parents are along for the bumpy ride. However, more than stockings are hung when hunky chorus members drop like snowflakes. Once again, Nicky and Noah use their drama skills to catch the killer before their Christmas balls get cracked. I know you’ll laugh, cry, feel romantic, and love delving into this crackling mystery with a surprise ending. As Nicky would say, “I’m more excited than a televangelist buying a new mansion after pledge week.”
It’s great to see our favorite characters back.
Nicky had no other choice but to cast his family members and friends in the show. Before Nicky made that decision, Noah had a kitchen knife ready, and Taavi was on the phone with social services. Nicky has his hands full as technical dress rehearsals for the show get off to a rocky start, Taavi falls unrequitedly in love, a homeless teenager is found living in the theatre, ensemble members claim their belongings have been stolen, and of course murder after murder multiplies. As Nicky would say, “Try saying that three times fast with braces on your teeth.”
Who are the new characters/suspects/victims for book eleven?
New characters in this novel include Assistant Professor of Music Barrett Knight (Ghost of the Lover of the Future). The dreamy musical director wants to make sweet music with Nicky and Noah (pun intended). Muscleman Roman Giamani, student set designer, has his design on someone else in the show. He also has a huge…secret. Student costumer Logan Benton and student stage manager Colton Corrigan share their tortured pasts and yearn for a happy future. Hunky ensemble members wealthy Lucas Alencar, ex-hustler Buck La Rue, and diner worker Marc Micklos claim to be straight, but visit gay establishments. Lighting designer student Alec Griffin shines the light on everyone’s antics.
Why did you produce an audio book version?
The readers begged for it. I totally agree that the books are auditory in nature and they deserve a voice (pun intended).
This is Brian Cheney‘s first Nicky and Noah mystery audio book.
Yes, Brian is a gifted actor, singer, and audio book performer. He did an amazing audition. His comic timing, character voices, and understanding of the genre are perfect for this series. I was thrilled when he agreed to perform this audio book, and I’m so pleased and proud with the result. Not to mention (but I will), he’s an amazingly nice guy, and he was a dream to work with on the audio book.
What makes the Nicky and Noah mystery series so special?
It’s a gay cozy mystery comedy series, meaning the setting is warm and cozy, the clues and murders (and laughs) come fast and furious, and there are enough plot twists and turns and a surprise ending to keep the pages turning (as Nicky would say) “faster than a conservative politician removing environmental and finance regulations.” At the center is the touching relationship between Professor of Play Directing Nicky Abbondanza and Associate Professor of Acting Noah Oliver. We watch them go from courting to marrying to adopting a child, all the while head over heels in love with each other (as we fall in love with them). Reviewers called the series “hysterically funny farce,” “Murder She Wrote meets Hart to Hart meets The Hardy Boys,” and “captivating whodunits.” One reviewer wrote they are the funniest books she’s ever read! Another said I’m “a master storyteller.” Who am I to argue?
How are the novels cozy?
Many of them take place in Vermont, a cozy state with green pastures, white church steeples, glowing lakes, and friendly and accepting people. Fictitious Treemeadow College (named after its gay founders, couple Tree and Meadow) is the perfect setting for a cozy mystery with its white Edwardian buildings, low white stone fences, lake and mountain views, and cherry wood offices with tall leather chairs and fireplaces. It’s even more cozy in winter with snow blanketing the campus and surrounding the village.
Many of your characters are of various ethnicities and sexual identities. Is that deliberate on your part?
Sure. We live in a diverse world. A story taking place at a college would be unbelievable if everyone were the same.
After producing these audio books, I’m sure you’ve been told the Nicky and Noah mysteries would make a terrific TV series.
Many many times. Rather than Logo showing reruns of Golden Girls around the clock, and Bravo airing so called reality shows, I would love to see them do The Nicky and Noah Mysteries. Come on, TV producers, make your offers! I’ve written a teleplay of the first novel and treatments for the remaining novels!
How would you cast the TV series?
Here’s my wish list: Matt Bomer as Nicky, Neil Patrick Harris as Noah, Rosie O’Donnell and Hugh Jackman as Noah’s parents, Valerie Bertinelli and Jay Leno as Nicky’s parents, me as Martin Anderson (nepotism!), Nathan Lane as Martin’s husband Ruben, Wanda Sykes as Martin’s office assistant Shayla, and Joe Manganiello as Nicky’s brother Tony.
How can your readers get their hands on the audio book of Drama Christmas, and how can they contact you?
The purchase links are below, as are my contact links, including my web site. I love to hear from readers! So do Nicky and Noah. I tell them everything!
Thank you, Joe, for interviewing today.
My pleasure. In the words of Nicky, “I’m happier than a priest at altar boy selection.” It is my great thrill, joy, and pleasure to share this eleventh audio book in the series with you. So take your seats. The stage lights are coming up on an infamous miser, Victorian lovers of the past, present, and future, a not so Tiny Tim, and murder!
The 11th Nicky and Noah Mystery!
a comedy/mystery/romance novel by Joe Cosentino
now an audio book performed by Brian Cheney
Formats: E-book, Paperback, and Audiobook
Release Date: Book: December 1, 2020, Audio Book: August 28, 2023
Length: 193 Pages ~ 6 Hours 15 Minutes
Heat Level: 2
Cover Art: Jesús Da Silva
Narrator: Brian Cheney
Genre: MM, contemporary, mystery, comedy, romance, winter holiday
It’s winter holiday time at Treemeadow College, and Theatre Professor Nicky Abbondanza, his husband Theatre Associate Professor Noah Oliver, their son Taavi, and best friends Martin and Ruben are donning their gay apparel in a musical version of Scrooge’s A Christmas Carol, entitled Call Me Carol! More than stockings are hung when hunky chorus members drop like snowflakes. Once again, our favorite thespians will need to use their drama skills to catch the killer and make the yuletide gay before their Christmas balls get cracked. You will be applauding and shouting Bravo for Joe Cosentino’s fast-paced, side-splittingly funny, edge-of-your-seat entertaining eleventh novel in this delightful series. Take your seats. The stage lights are coming up on an infamous miser, S&M savvy ghost, Victorian lovers of the past, present, and future, a not so Tiny Tim, and murder!
Praise for the Nicky and Noah Mysteries
“Joe Cosentino has a unique and fabulous gift. His writing is flawless, and his plot-lines will have you guessing until the very last page, which makes his books a joy to read. His books are worth their weight in gold, and if you haven’t discovered them yet you are in for a rare treat.” Divine Magazine
“a combination of Laurel and Hardy mixed with Hitchcock and Murder She Wrote… Loaded with puns and one-liners…Right to the end, you are kept guessing, and the conclusion still has a surprise in store for you…the best modern Sherlock and Watson in books today…I highly recommend this book and the entire series, it’s a pure pleasure, full of fun and love, written with talent and brio…fabulous…brilliant” Optimumm Book Reviews
“adventure, mystery, and romance with every page….Funny, clever, and sweet….I can’t find anything not to love about this series….This read had me laughing and falling in love….Nicky and Noah are my favorite gay couple.” Urban Book Reviews
“Every entry of the Nicky and Noah mystery series is rife with intrigue, calamity, and hilarity…Cosentino keeps us guessing – and laughing – until the end, as well as leaving us breathlessly anticipating the next Nicky and Noah thriller.” Edge Media Network
“Superb fun from start to finish, for me this series gets stronger with every book and that’s saying something because the benchmark was set so very high with book 1.” Three Books Over the Rainbow
“The Nicky and Noah Mysteries series are perfect for fans of the Cozy Mystery sub-genre. They mix tongue-in-cheek humor, over-the-top characters, a wee bit of political commentary, and suspense into a sweet little mystery solved by Nicky and Noah, theatre professors for whom all the world’s a stage.” Prism Book Alliance
“This is one hilarious series with a heart and it just keeps getting better. I highly recommend them all, and please read them in the order they were written for full blown laugh out loud reading pleasure!” Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
About the Author
Joe Cosentino was voted Favorite MM Mystery, Humorous, and Contemporary Author of the Year by the readers of Divine Magazine for Drama Queen, the first Nicky and Noah mystery novel.
He is also the author of…
- the remaining Nicky and Noah mysteries: Drama Muscle, Drama Cruise, Drama Luau, Drama Detective, Drama Fraternity, Drama Castle, Drama Dance, Drama Faerie, Drama Runway, Drama Christmas, Drama Pan, Drama TV, Drama Oz, Drama Prince, Drama Merry, Drama Daddy, Drama King;
- the Player Piano Mysteries: The Player and The Player’s Encore;
- the Jana Lane Mysteries: Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll, Rag Doll;
- the Cozzi Cove series: Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back, Moving Forward, Stepping Out, New Beginnings, Happy Endings;
- the In My Heart Anthology: An Infatuation & A Shooting Star;
- the Tales from Fairyland Anthology: The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland and Holiday Tales from Fairyland;
- the Bobby and Paolo Holiday Stories Anthology: A Home for the Holidays, The Perfect Gift, The First Noel;
- and the Found At Last Anthology: Finding Giorgio and Finding Armando.
His books have won numerous Book of the Month awards and Rainbow Award Honorable Mentions. As an actor, Joe appeared in principal roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Jason Robards, and Holland Taylor. He received his Master of Fine Arts degree from Goddard College, Master’s degree from SUNY New Paltz, and is currently a happily married college theatre professor/department chair residing in New York State.