Friday, September 22, 2017

Re-Mix tour: GRIP by Kennedy Ryan

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“ of the most engaging and well-written romance books I have read...It's like nothing you've read before. It touches the issues no one talks about in our community. And it's a MUST-READ."
--LJ Shen, Amazon Bestselling Author

GRIP, Kennedy Ryan’s sexy, emotional Amazon Bestseller,

is available now for only 99¢!

Scroll all the way down for an excerpt and to enter the
$25 Gift Card Giveaway!
Resisting an irresistible force wears you down and turns you out. I know. I've been doing it for years.
I may not have a musical gift of my own, but I've got a nose for talent and an eye for the extraordinary. And Marlon James - Grip to his fans - is nothing short of extraordinary.
Years ago, we strung together a few magical nights, but I keep those memories in a locked drawer and I've thrown away the key. All that's left is friendship and work.
He's on the verge of unimaginable fame, all his dreams poised to come true. I manage his career, but I can't seem to manage my heart.
It's wild, reckless, disobedient. And it remembers all the things I want to forget.

Read GRIP today for only 99¢ or FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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FLOW, the FREE prequel, MUST BE READ before GRIP!

STILL, the sexy and emotional final installment of The Grip Series,
releases September 24th!
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"I fell for her before the beat dropped. Between the verses and after rehearsal and in sixteen bars I was intoxicated." 

When I heard Kennedy Ryan was writing a story about Grip and Bristol...I started counting down the days from the get go. I always wanted to see them get together from the Soul Series and I was hysterically dancing when I heard they were finally going to get to tell their story. 

Its taken me a few days to be able to describe this book because just saying it was amazing, wasn't going to cut it for me and it deserves so much more than that. 

This. Book. Is. Life. 

I still can't put into words just how outstandingly spectacular this book was. GRIP was so worth the wait and then some. This story will be stuck with me for years to come. Kennedy is at her best with this book. Definitely one of my favorite books this year that I've read. 

"People think I'm heartless. That I don't care enough. That isn't it. This ache, this would bleeding on the inside of me, it tells the truth of how I really feel." 

From the outside Bristol looks like she has the perfect life. A famous brother, a rich family, parents that are still married, and a perfect job. But what people don't see is...her life is falling apart and it has been for awhile. Nothing in her family is as it seems. 

Bris has built a wall around herself to keep herself from getting hurt. To avoid the ever so charming...Grip. Though Bristol is his manager now, that doesn't sway her feelings for him that she's been holding onto for years. She's not as fearless as everyone thinks she is...she can't just express her feelings so easy like Grip can without the thought of getting hurt. Again. 

"While I've drawn my armor tightly around myself, Grip stood naked in the heat of the battle, stripped all of his armor away and made himself vulnerable." 

Grip is tired of it. Tired of showing his feelings to Bristol, telling her exactly how he has felt and he's gotten nothing in return. He's ready to have her all to himself. But it doesn't look like it's going to be happening anytime soon. Though he would wait forever to have her...he wants her. Needs her. 

He's never had an easy life. Nothing has ever just been handed to Grip. Growing up in Compton...he knows what bloodshed looks like. He's seen the worst. He's been in the worst. But it's only made him stronger and his lyrics speak to people in such a profound way. 

But he's never felt pain like he has at not having Bristol. 

"I want her unhinged. I want her to feel what I've felt every day since we met." 

These two were made for each other. They just don't know it yet. They were made for each other like music is made to touch your senses, they were made to touch each others lives. But will Bristol finally take that plunge and fall for him before it's too late? 

I can honestly say this book was truly spectacular. There wasn't one thing that I didn't like about this book. Just thinking about how beautiful and inspirational this book was, gets me deep in feels. This story is so much more than a's a story about life, love, strength, and redemption. It's a story of hope.
"There's a web that traps us together, silky and fine, tensile and fragile. A sticky mess I've never wanted to escape until now. Maybe it's time to let go." 

GRIP was actually one of my most anticipated reads this year. I binge read the Soul Series by Kennedy Ryan last year and fell in love with her stories and the way she writes. But here I was, SIX months after the release of the book and I still hadn't picked it up. I can't tell you why this is. But when the news came that Gripstol was getting a second book, I knew it was time. I needed to finally take the plunge. I devoured the prequel Flow (MUST BE READ FIRST) and then immediately started it.

"I notice the impression the cuffs left on my wrists. You don’t see the impression they’ve left inside me, not just this time, but the time before and the time before. How can I walk in his shoes? How can he walk in mine? He’s never lived with this constant threat, and I’ve never lived without it. Living those lyrics is so much harder than singing them from the safety of a stage." 

So here's the deal. I finished GRIP over two weeks ago. I spent those two weeks trying to sort out all of my thoughts and feelings about this book and basically got no where. There are no words that I can give you to describe how I felt when I finished Grip and Bristol's story. I feel that everyone should read this story. NO! Everyone NEEDS to read this story. It's raw. It's emotional. It's real. The things we see happen in this book are still happening in our society. Racism and discrimination still exist in our world. Kennedy Ryan's writing is poetic and she tells this story in such a beautiful yet impactful way. She is brave for putting herself and this message out there. GRIP will leave an imprint on your heart.

“I’m the writer, but it seems like you always know what to say to me,” 

I honestly wish I had more to say about the book but I'm still at a loss for words. The lyrics to the song Bruise at the end of the book gave me chills. I wish I had taken a picture of my skin. GOOSEBUMPS! There is a passage in the book that almost left me speechless and I feel it's a good summary of what this story means:

"The last chorus is more spoken word than rap, with the music and the beat falling away. Acapella. When the final word leaves my mouth, disappearing into thin air, it lands in the total silence I've come to expect when people hear the song for the first time. A silence loaded with contemplation. The sound of walls dropping and assumptions combusting. Ignorance running from the room. The trickle of applause swells to the loudest it's been all night in here, and now, my smile is real. That dream I sketched in the air with Rhyson, suspended above the theater, to be a voice for my generation, that just happened." 

Now that I've just rambled. Take my advice, READ EVERYTHING KENNEDY RYAN HAS EVER WRITTEN. Her words are magical.

“Neither of us has been in a serious relationship in years.”
“That doesn’t mean anything.” I stand and slide my feet into the Jimmy Choos. “You haven’t exactly been waiting around, have you?”
“Damn right I haven’t been waiting around.” He doesn’t get up, but his firm hold on my wrist stops me from walking away. “I’m not Rhyson.”
I look down at him, frowning my confusion.
“What do you mean?”
“Remember when Kai put Rhyson in the friend zone?”
Of course I do. For a long time, my sister-in-law Kai denied the attraction between her and Rhyson.

“Yeah, so?”
“When Kai wasn’t checking for Rhys, I assumed he had to be sleeping with other girls.” Grip shrugs. “I mean, he and Kai were just friends. But, nope. He said he only wanted Kai and didn’t sleep with anyone else.”
“Then you’re right.” I tug at my wrist, but he holds on tight. “You’re definitely not Rhyson.”
“It was months, Bristol. She shut him out for months. Not years.”
“I’m not shutting you out.” I release a tired breath. “I’m living my life, and you’re living yours.”
“Right.” He nods and turns his mouth down at the corners. “So, if you won’t be with me, then I’ll fuck whoever the hell I want. If you have a problem with that, you know what to do about it.”
For a moment, our eyes tangle in the dimness. His words sink into my flesh like briars. Every word out of his mouth only proves that I’m right to get out of here. That I’m right not to give in. If I ever gave him a chance and he fucked around on me . . . I’ve seen what that looks like. It looks like a woman as strong as my mother reduced to pathetic, teary drunkenness.
“It’s none of my business.” I shift my eyes away from him and to the glittering city skyline just beyond the rooftop.
“It’s none of your business until you say it is.”
I force myself to look back.
“Don’t hold your breath, Grip.” I say my next words with deliberation. “I mean, it’s not like I’m sitting around saving it, either.”
He pulls me forward, and I press my hand to the hardness of his chest so I don’t fall into him. My knee supports me, pressed against his on the couch.
“Are you poking me?” One strong hand wraps around the back of my thigh, anger marking his expression. “Do you want to know if it bothers me when you fuck other guys?”
I just stare at him unblinkingly. He presses my leg, urging me forward until I’m fully on the couch, fully on him, one knee on either side of his legs, facing him. Straddling him.
“It makes me want to set the world on fire.” His words come softly, but the truth roars in his eyes. “To think of you with them.”

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Kennedy Ryan

Kennedy Ryan is a Southern girl gone Southern California. A Top 100 Amazon Bestseller, Kennedy writes romance about remarkable women who find a way to thrive even in tough times, the love they find, and the men who cherish them. She is a wife to her lifetime lover and mother to an extraordinary son. She has always leveraged her journalism background to write for charity and non-profit organizations, but enjoys writing to raise Autism awareness most. A contributor for Modern Mom Magazine, Kennedy’s writings have appeared in Chicken Soup for the Soul, USA Today and many others. The founder and executive director of a foundation serving Georgia families living with Autism, Kennedy has appeared on Headline News, Montel Williams, NPR and other outlets as a voice for families living with autism.

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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Double Book Review: STAND by A. L. Jackson

Title: Stand 
Author: A. L. Jackson 
Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Release Date: May 20th, 2017 
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 
From NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author A.L. Jackson comes the next seductive, unforgettable Bleeding Stars Stand-Alone Novel…

Zachary Kennedy has never been known as a fighter, but he’ll never regret fighting for her…

I’m Zee Kennedy.
Quiet. Reserved. Predictable.
When my brother died, everyone thought I was just the good guy who stepped up to take his place in the band.

No one knew what I was hiding. The one thing I’ve been fighting for.

For six years, I’ve never lost focus.

Not until one chance encounter with Alexis Kensington.

Now she’s become my greatest temptation.
I knew better than to touch her, but now that I’ve had a taste, I can’t get enough.
Her kiss becomes my air. Her body my salvation.

She needed a savior and somehow she became mine.

Taking her was a betrayal. But keeping her means risking everything.
One look at Alexis Kensington, and I know she’s worth the fight.
Will my past continue to keep me down or will I finally find the strength to pull myself up and Stand…

Ugh, where to even begin with the perfection of this book. I'm a sucker for an A. L. Jackson book...big time. If you've never read one of her books, you MUST. They are the greatest and such a treat to read. She knows exactly what she's doing when she sits down with pen to paper. She has such a beautiful way of writing and telling a story, that will leave you lost to the world. 

The Bleeding Stars series has been one of my all time favorite series for so long and it was so bittersweet to see it coming to an end. But this beloved series couldn't have ended in a more eloquent way. 

"She felt so perfect. So good. I wanted to touch her. Explore her. Claim her." 

Stand follows the story of Zee Kennedy and Alexis Kensington. Their story took my breath away. Zee is the drummer of Sunder and he loves what he does. Though he never pictured himself where he is now...he's learning to enjoy the moment. He knows he can never change his life cause he owes everything to his brother and his legacy. 

"Fall with me," I whispered. He leaned down, lips just brushing mine, and Zachary Kennedy murmured his truth. 
"I already jumped." 

Zee has always been a fighter, that's why when he sees her for the first time...he knows he has to fight for her. Alexis has struggled with life due to the struggles her twin sister has drug her in. But she knows she will never turn her back on her sister, no matter how much she should. 

Though Alexis may not have the best life...she knows how to embrace life and just live. She pushes forward full force and is always living life to the fullest. When she meets Zee, she knows he is the drummer of Sunder but she soon finds herself lost to him, no matter how famous he is. 

"I felt bound to him in an unfathomable way. As if when he'd been holding those splintering pieces together, the man had managed to chip away a small piece of my soul. A piece that would permanently belong to him." 

It's so hard to describe their love over the course of this book and the evolution to these characters because it's truly magnificent. It's something so rare and beautiful, that you feel so privileged peeking inside their life. Zee and Alexis are two broken people that held the missing piece to each other. The book couldn't have ended in a better way for these characters that I have loved for so long and I look forward to reading more from this author. 

STAND is the final book in the Bleeding Stars series by AL Jackson. I've had this book since release and I've been putting off reading it. Not because I didn't think it would be good, or because I didn't want to read it. But because I HATE, no loaaathe, goodbyes. If you know anything about me, you will know that I have a million and one abandoned and unfinished series sitting on my TBR. Series that are some of my all time favorites, yet I still haven't finished them. Why? Because if I just don't read it that means it's never completely over, right? Am I the only one who does this? Please tell me that I'm not alone.

"I knew this would cost me. Everything important in our lives did. Nothing was free and every action came with a consequence" 

My co-blogger and I have buddy read most of this series, so when we both had a gap in our reading schedule we decided that it was time to dive in and finally read STAND. You guys! This book was so much more than I ever could have hoped or dreamed it would be. It was heartbreaking and heartfelt. I could tell that the author poured everything she had into this story. I already want to reread it! Alexis and Zee are two broken souls, with secrets and so many personal demons. I have waited so long to hear Zee's story. It almost broke me, but it was worth every second.

"Sometimes the people we love most end up in the places we never imagined they'd go."

This series is one of my absolute favorite "rock star romance" series and I think everyone should read them!!! I did the majority of this series in audiobook (migraines suck!). I HIGHLY recommend these if you're a person who likes to listen to books. If you haven't ever read a book by AL Jackson, these books are a great place to start. She has a new series with the first book, SHOW ME THE WAY, coming out on October 2nd. I am so exited to dive into this book.

"Living is a choice. We decide how we wake up each morning and face the day. Either we're lead by hope or ruled by fear."

A.L. Jackson is the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. She writes emotional, sexy, heart-filled stories about boys who usually like to be a little bit bad. 

Her bestselling series include THE REGRET SERIES, CLOSER TO YOU, and BLEEDING STARS novels. Watch for A.L. Jackson’s upcoming novel, SHOW ME THE WAY, the first stand-alone novel in her brand new FIGHT FOR ME SERIES.

If she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the pool with her family, sipping cocktails with her friends, or of course with her nose buried in a book.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Happy Release Day + Double Review: THIS IS BEAUTIFUL by Kennedy Fox

Title: Checkmate: This is Beautiful
Series: Checkmate Duet Series (Logan & Kayla, #2)
Author: Kennedy Fox
Designer & Photographer: Sara EirewGenre: Contemporary Romance
Trope: Second-Chance Romance
Release Date: September 19, 2017

The anticipated conclusion of the Logan & Kayla saga in the Checkmate Duet Series from duo of romance authors under the USA Today bestselling author pseudonym, Kennedy Fox!
This second-chance romance will have you gasping and cheering this two on from the first to the last page! Are you ready to play the final game?
Kayla Sinclair is a saint and real life Angel.
She wears her heart on her sleeve and inspires me to be a better person.
Rescuing dogs, feeding the homeless, volunteering at the local food pantry are just a few of the ways she gives back to others, although no one has ever been there for her.
Falling for her was inevitable, losing her will destroy me.
Letting someone in didn’t come easy, but she made me want to try for the first time in years.
Her bubbling personality and kind spirit make it impossible to forget a girl like her.
But when tragedy strikes and she loses all memory that our relationship ever existed, my worst nightmare comes to life.
I’ll do anything to remind her of the love we shared. I know it’ll be an uphill battle, but I won’t walk away without a fight. Whoever said all is fair in love and war never played by my rules.
Checkmate, Angel.
*Recommend for ages 18+ due to sexual content and adult language.*
**This is book w in the Logan & Kayla Saga–a second-chance romance. Must read This is Dangerous first. However, you don’t need to read any of the other Checkmate duet series to enjoy this one, but it’s recommended as they are both introduced in the earlier books.**

"Those butterflies resurface inside my belly when I read his messages. It doesn't make any sense to me now, considering I've only spoken to him a handful of times and hardly know anything about him. Yet, my heart seems to remember. If that's even possible." 

Where to even begin you guys! This. Series. Every book in the Checkmate Duet series makes my heart burst and my panties melt. When Kennedy Fox sits down to write, these ladies know what they are doing. I was heartbroken when I heard that this was the last book in the series but I knew I would be counting down the days until I could devour. Truly a bittersweet moment. 

"There's an old saying that states, if you love something let it go and if it comes back - it's yours. Will my Angel ever come back to me? 

After that jaw dropping, heart stopping ending in This is Dangerous...I was waiting for this bad boy to drop into my hands. This is Beautiful continues the story of Logan and Kayla, and picks up right after the events that happened in the previous book. These two were meant for each other and have been through so much, but it's only the start in their story. 

"Our bodies were made for each other, Kayla. Always was. Always will be." 

So many things happen in this book that will leave you in a puddle of feels and shoving donuts in your face. But you wouldn't have it any other way. Team Layla will go down as one of my all time favorite couples because they are just so perfect. After the events of TID, Kayla is so lost in so many ways and she's trying to learn how to cope with the trauma that has been bestowed upon her. As Logan is trying to guide her, love her, and be her Knight in shining armor. 

"It's almost as if our hearts built a bridge to each other, while trying to mend the broken one." 

Logan faces so much term oil in this book and so many decisions that he has to make for the greater good...that could change him. I could think of no two better people that deserved each other but can they push through the battles that are being thrust at them? Or will they drop their swords and stop fighting? 

Though this was the end of the Checkmate Duet series, it couldn't have ended in a better way. Though a few times I've wanted to chunk these books at the wall (LOL) they are worth every late night conversation, blueberry muffin baking, donut shoving contest, every laugh and every tear. These books brought so many tears, so many laughs, and so many memories that I will cherish forever. 

It's been a journey you guys! I read my first book by Kennedy Fox back in March while I was on vacation. I devoured them and then anxiously awaited the release of the next duet. THIS IS BEAUTIFUL is the final book in the Checkmate Duet series. But don't worry, this isn't the end of Kennedy Fox or the Checkmate characters! There is a spin-off series releasing in early 2018 following the Bishop Brothers (whom we met in Checkmate: This is Reckless (Drew & Courtney, #1)). There will be a total of 4 books, starting with Taming Him. I've just read the synopsis and I'm already hooked. Back to what you're all here to read about. I will do my best to keep this review as spoiler FREE as possible. 

**There will probably be minor spoilers of This is Dangerous. So if you haven't read the first book in this duet, proceed with caution!**

"Would she give me a chance to show her what we had? Or could we be friends and start again? Would we ever get that second chance or would she want to move on instead?"

Kennedy Fox takes second chance romance to the next level in the conclusion to Kayla and Logan's story. At the end of Checkmate: This is Dangerous (Logan & Kayla, #1) we were left with our jaws on the ground and our hearts racing. Will they ever get back what they had before the events of that fateful day? Rocked by a tragic accident Kayla has no memory of the last two years. Logan is completely shattered. He would move heaven and earth if that's what it took to make her happy. He would do anything for her. But after finally letting someone into his heart, can he let her go? Or will he take this second chance to show her why she loved him before.

"It's almost as if our hearts built a bridge to each other, while trying to mend the broken one"

I had so many theories as to why Kayla was at that house. What she could possibly have been doing there. As soon as I finished reading TID, I was texting the only person I knew who would still be awake because I HAD to get all my thoughts out immediately. I'll just say that NONE of them were right. That's one of the things I love about this duo of authors. They're completely unpredictable. Maybe that's because there's two of them writing each book, or maybe it just shows their writing abilities. I adored the sweetness of Kayla and Logan's story. If you love a sweet romance with a bit of mystery and a lot of steam, I highly recommend you pick these up!

"Sometimes you have to take risks to live a life that makes you happy."



Many people have asked up what’s coming after the Checkmate Duet Series.
We are planning to release A WEEK WITH A BAD BOY together under Brooke and Lyra on October 19, 2017! We can’t wait! It will be exclusively on Amazon and enrolled in Kindle Unlimited.

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make sure to add this to your TBR list!

Early 2018 we will start releasing the BISHOP BROTHERS Series!
It’s an interconnected stand alone series that will follow Courtney’s 4 brothers! Yes, all 4! We’re so excited about this and can’t wait to tell you more. If you would like to know the titles, please CLICK HERE! We’re still in the early planning stages but will update our “coming soon” page with more info as soon as it’s set in stone.

Brooke Cumberland & Lyra Parish are a duo of romance authors who teamed up under the USA Today Bestselling pseudonym, Kennedy Fox who share a love of You’ve Got Mail and The Holiday. When they aren’t bonding over romantic comedies, they like to brainstorm new book ideas. One day, they decided to collaborate and have some fun creating new characters that’ll make your lady bits tingle and your heart melt. If you enjoy romance stories with sexy, tattooed alpha males and smart, independent women, then a Kennedy Fox book is for you!
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