Tag: jessica hawkins

Somebody Else’s Sky by Jessica Hawkins

Book: Somebody Else’s Sky

Series: Something in the Way #2

Author: Jessica Hawkins

Release date: 22 May 2017

Main characters: Lake Kaplan, Tiffany Kaplan and Manning Sutter.

Blurb:

If I closed my eyes, I could still see them—all blonde sunshine, ocean-blue eyes, and long limbs. The glint of Lake’s gold bracelet. Pink cotton candy on Tiffany’s tongue. My scenery may have changed from heaven to hell, but some things never would: my struggle to do right by both sisters. To let Lake soar. To lift Tiffany up. The sacrifices I made for them, I made willingly.

A better man would’ve walked away by now, but I never claimed to be any good. I only promised myself I’d keep enough distance. If I’d learned one thing from my past, it was that love came in different forms. You could love passionately, hurt deep, die young. Or you could provide the kind of firm, steady support someone else could lean on.

Lake was everything I wanted, and nothing I could ever have. I was nobody before I knew her and a criminal after. The way to love her was to let her shine—even if it would be for somebody else.

 

Why you should read it: This is the follow up book to Something in the Way, and it’s more angsty, more emotional and more dramatic. Everyone wants to be happy, but it’s clear that someone’s about to get very hurt. As ever, Jessica Hawkins’ writing draws you in and engages you – even if you don’t like what the characters are doing! In this book, we get to know Manning in more depth, how he feels and how his back story has affected him.  We get to know Lake more too – and how she’s developed over the last two years.

What you may not like: Ok. A couple of things – and I may be in the minority here. I didn’t like Manning – at all. He’s been through hell but really his relationships with both Lake and Tiffany are CLEARLY going to cause huge divisions. He made his decision – and I agreed with his reasoning but then he kept acting as though he was Lake’s dad time and time again – he needed to back off! Then there’s Lake – I know we all think we’re grown up at 17 and all, but she is so young. So childish and selfish, as only adolescents can be. She annoyed the hell out of me. Her lack of family loyalty was also very surprising. The only character I really ‘liked’ (or disliked the least) was Tiffany. Why? Because she’s the only one who was honest about her intentions. She’s self-serving in some ways but honestly, she was refreshing!

Rating: 3/5 for a turbulent and make-you-scream-at-your-kindle kind of a read. I am looking forward to seeing how this shitstorm can possibly sort itself out in Move The Stars, which is out in October 2017.

Night Fever by Jessica Hawkins

night feverBook: Night Fever

Series: Night Fever Serial  book #1

Author: Jessica Hawkins

Format: Kindle ARC

Review by: Onnica

Basic story: Lola Winters leads a very simple life. It’s not perfect but she has Johnny Pace, her steady boyfriend who has been part of her life for the last eight years. Together, they are getting through life, working at Hey Joe, a bar that had its heyday in the 80s, but is now shabby and worn down. When the owner decides it’s finally time to sell up and move on, Lola and Johnny know they have to do something. Lola would do anything for Johnny and knows that if they’re ever going to live life (get married, live beyond pay check to pay check) instead of waiting for the situation to improve – they’ll actually have to make it happen.

Enter Beau Olivier. Wealthy, enigmatic and apparently smitten with Lola the minute he sets eyes on her, he decides to make the couple a deal. If she agrees to spend a night with him, submitting to his desires, then the bar is theirs. Lola is disgusted and so is Johnny. However, when reality dawns, the pair knows that this could be the only chance to getting the future they always wanted. It’s only a few hours after all. How bad could it be?

Lola believes she can put her disgust and her misgivings to one side for the payout. What’s one night of humiliation and submission compared to their dreams finally coming to fruition? Somewhere, deep down though, Lola fears it won’t be that simple and maybe she’ll learn some uncomfortable truths about who she truly is…

Why you should read this: Ok – I know what you’re thinking. You’re concerned that I’m advocating you read yet another story where the heroine sells herself in the style of Demi Moore in Indecent Proposal. True to a certain extent, however, Jessica Hawkins has written a story which incorporates some very uncomfortable themes but makes it a compelling read all the same. Yes, the feminist in me was hesitant about reading this story. Lola essentially agrees to hire her body to Beau in exchange for the answers to her problems, but it is more complex than that. Lola’s about to learn a lot about her relationship with Johnny, who she is and also whether she’ll ever be prepared to go after what she wants. For me, this is a story about self-discovery. It’s hot, it’ll mess with your head a bit and I don’t think you’ll always know who to root for.

What you might hate:  You could be sick to death of the rich-man-poor-girl trope – I know I am, as I’ve read so many mediocre stories which verge on the ridiculous. HOWEVER, this is not one of them. It’s thoughtful, smart and I cannot wait to read the rest of the story, as I truly have no idea how it’s going to end up.

Rating: I’m giving Night Fever 5/5 for the up and down of my emotions while reading it and the engaging writing style that drew me in immediately. More please!

Night Fever is out on November 4th.

Come Together by Jessica Hawkins

Book: Come Together

Series: The Cityscape Series

Author: Jessica Hawkins

Format: uncorrected ARC

Review by: Onnica

Basic story: Olivia has finally taken the plunge and delivered the earth shattering news to her husband Bill that she’s leaving him for David Dylan. Bill understandably bounces between anger and then the desire to work on their problems, even submitting to counselling if she’ll stay. Olivia leaves the home and seeks refuge and support with her best friend Gretchen. However, not all of her friends can support her decision to leave her marriage. Lifelong friends Lucy and Andrew are firmly in camp Bill and her difficult relationship with her mother is tried further. Olivia is convinced she’s made the right decision; no-one has ever made her feel as alive as David and he feels the same way about her. Doesn’t he?

Bill, her mother and Lucy all have the same warning: David likes a challenge and will dump her as soon as he gets bored. Then she’ll be left alone. Confused and overwhelmed, Olivia is unsure of whom she should believe. Has David been completely honest with her about his feelings and will their love stand up to public pressure and the demons of her past?

Why you should read this: If you read and enjoyed both Come Undone and Come Alive then how can you not want to read the conclusion to this epic love story? In this book we really see the inner workings of Olivia’s mind. Before, she’s kept everything internalised and contained in a neat package. Now she’s let an all-consuming love in, all hell breaks loose! Olivia’s past and her insecurities really rise to the surface and she questions her decisions throughout the story. We also get a clearer picture of David Dylan the lover. So close to getting what he wants, we really see his full character, the good and the bad. I enjoyed the development of all the characters – there was realism to it – Olivia and David have to face the consequences of their extra-marital relationship and the fallout is messy. Friends will pick sides and it may not be theirs.

What you might hate: Ok – as I said, you get deeper into the characters’ psyches. David has hitherto been a strong, silent and brooding type. Now Olivia has given up everything for him, his dominant and controlling tendencies make themselves felt. I can deal with protective – who doesn’t want to be protected? But at times he clearly has anger issues that need to be addressed. Thumping walls and scaring Olivia because he doesn’t want her to be alone with her husband due to his instability is kind of skewed logic! The couple have a difficult path to finding peace and you’ll go through the ups and downs with them. At times I became a little exasperated with Olivia’s lack of faith in David’s commitment to their relationship and thought she should just say something instead of having David drag it out of her. This isn’t a criticism – it annoyed me as it’s behaviour that I recognise and dislike in myself!

Rating: 3.5/5 – I’ve loved this series so much since picking up book one serendipitously in January. I have lived through Olivia and David’s first meeting to their final HEA. (I don’t think that’s a spoiler, is it?) It was a crazy, angst-ridden and emotional journey and I thank Jessica Hawkins for bringing us such passionate characters.

Come Together is out now.

Happy Release Day! – Jessica Hawkins’ Come Together

Happy, happy release day to the incredibly talented and lovely Jessica Hawkins! We’re the first stop on her blog tour for Book 3 in the Cityscape Series and we finally get to see who will have their happily ever after and who will be torn apart. If you’ve enjoyed Olivia, David (swoons unashamedly) and Bill’s journeys, you won’t want to miss the final instalment.

I’ll be posting a review later next week, but for now here’s an EXCLUSIVE excerpt from Come Together.

David walked to me and sat, the bed dipping under his weight. “I like being here in your old room. I get to see a different part of you.”

“Do you like what you see?” I asked, arching an eyebrow at him.

His eyes moved to my lips, and a grunt was his non-response.

“I’m not supposed to have boys in my bed,” I whispered. Before he could stop me, I threw a leg over him and settled astride his lap. “Dad would flip.”

He took two handfuls of my ass and squeezed, pulling me against his crotch.

“You’re hard,” I murmured, my mind buzzing, my insides thrilling. He skated one hand up my back and stilled me by the nape of my neck. He held it as he latched his lips to mine in a sensual kiss that quickly turned hard and greedy. His tongue reached for me hungrily as his hand secured me to him. I gyrated in his lap as he flexed his other hand against my ass.

“Lose your virginity here?” he rasped.

I shook my head. “College,” I breathed and then kissed him again. “You?” I asked into his mouth.

“Sixteen.”

“Head cheerleader?” I pushed my hips into him, creating a slow but purposeful rhythm.

“Something like that,” he said from behind gritted teeth. “You?”

“Jordan Banks, my,” my breath hitched when he pulled me against him harder, “first boyfriend.”

He flipped me over onto my back suddenly and grasped my hips in his hands. My legs surrounded him as he continued grinding against me.

“You’re gonna . . . make me . . . come,” I breathed, gasping with each acute sensation.

With a snap, he popped open the button of my jeans with one hand and pulled them over my ass. He propped himself above me with an outstretched arm. “Touch yourself in this bed?” he asked. He bypassed my pants to continue his sinuous teasing against my panties.

“Yes,” I whimpered.

“Show me.”

I hesitated, lost in the sensations singing through my body. He grasped my hand and lowered it between my legs. He shifted his hips and clamped my hand over my mound, circling my fingers around my clit.

“Oh, God,” I moaned, bowing my back. “Right there.”

“Don’t stop,” he said gruffly as he grabbed himself through his pants.

I urged him forward by pushing my heels into his ass.

“We can’t.” He glanced over his shoulder and when he looked back at me, his wore a lascivious grin. “What if your dad catches us?”

“I’m willing to risk it,” I exhaled, my fingers already tearing at his fly.

Come Together is out today.

Come Together

Cover Reveal – Come Together by Jessica Hawkins

Hi all! Onnica here.

So I jumped the gun yesterday and already shared Jessica Hawkins’ new book cover on Facebook and Twitter. I was just so excited! There are so many great books being released at the moment and I feel so grateful when people I admire ask us to spread the news. Due for release on 19th September, Come Together will conclude the Cityscape series and we’ll finally find out what’s in store for Olivia, David and Bill. So what’s book 3 about? Here’s the synopsis and the cover – which is my favourite so far:

Come Together on GoodreadsPhoto: © iStockphoto.com/VikaValter

Come Together is the third and final instalment of The Cityscape Series.

With a single decision, Olivia Germaine’s fantasy has become a reality. Now she is faced with two commitments: one she must make and one she must break. But in order to accept a love she never thought possible, Olivia will have to let go of the broken past that defines her – and of deeply-rooted fears that could ruin everything.

Everything is what David Dylan wants to give her, and it’s what he wants in return. He must prove to Olivia that despite his playboy ways, he’s worth leaving behind the stable future her husband can offer her. David is a man who always gets what he wants . . . but this time he may be fighting for something unattainable.

Can Olivia escape the past that threatens to consume her?
And can David break through to her before it does?

Fancy a copy of Come Together? Head on over to Jessica Hawkins’ blog and enter the rafflecopter competition.

Come Alive by Jessica Hawkins

Book: Come Alive

Series: Cityscape #2

Author: Jessica Hawkins

Review by: Onnica

Basic story: Three months have passed since Olivia ran from David’s bed in a state of panic and guilt. Struggling to be the perfect wife and friend while coping with the death of her mother-figure Davena has sent Olivia spiralling into depression and everyone is worried about her. Unable to admit to anyone what is consuming her every thought, she remains closed off. Convinced she’ll never see David again, she buries herself in her work, avoiding her husband Bill, whom she cannot look in the eye without the guilt washing over her.

Determined to draw a line under what has happened and make her marriage work, Olivia is dumbfounded when she comes face to face with David at her friend’s wedding. What is he doing there? He’s accompanied Dani, her friend’s sister as a date. Unable to cope with her feelings of jealousy, she struggles to take the higher ground. This is how it’s supposed to be: her with Bill and David with someone who isn’t married. If she keeps telling herself that, she may end up believing it.

Instead of putting ghosts to rest, the meeting has the opposite effect. David is worried by Olivia’s appearance – she’s lost weight, is clearly unhappy and he wants to help. This time he doesn’t intend on letting her go. Olivia comes to the realisation that in order to be happy, she will have to make a life-altering decision; work on her marriage and give into the demands of her husband or take the chance on something more with David.

Why you should read this: If you read and were sucked in by Come Undone, then you’re seriously going to want to read this next instalment. Seriously, trilogies are notorious for the second book just being filler, where not a lot happens. This is NOT the case with Come Alive. We get to know Olivia, David and Bill in greater depth in this book and the lines between good and bad are so blurred you’ll find yourself rooting for the couple causing the pain. I couldn’t put it down and read it all in one go until I finished it. At some points in the book I thought Olivia was going to turn into one of those heroines who spend chapters and chapters repeating the same inner monologue about who to choose, but when she decides to be honest with everyone – it completely knocked me on my ass and I totally respected her!

What you might hate: Ok, so the story IS based on an adulterous relationship. But you knew this already – if that’s not your bag then this whole series may not be for you. However, the way the author has presented the characters is so real, so engaging and so powerful, that you’ll end up thinking, ‘I know this is wrong, but…’ You’ll ask yourself questions like, should you remain in a marriage because you vowed to, even if it isn’t working? I’m not absolving Olivia and David completely though. There are times when I wanted to shake the pair – they don’t always make the right decisions and at one point near the end of the book I really didn’t agree with what they did or the way they did it. (But then I reminded myself that it is fiction, so I unclenched!)

Rating: 4.5/5 I was blown away (and I never give half points!) as I thoroughly enjoyed the journey these characters are on. The writing is honest, non-judgmental and allows the reader to make up her own mind about what is right and wrong. I just want everyone to be happy in the end! I’m in serious danger of becoming a massive Jessica Hawkins fan-girl.

Come Alive is out on May 30th. For the chance to win a copy, click here.

Author Interview: Jessica Hawkins and Come Undone Giveaway!

Hey everyone, I’m feeling very lucky today as I get to ask one of my favourite breakout authors of 2013 a few questions! Jessica Hawkins is with me to talk about her new bookCome Alive Cover Come Alive, which is Book #2 in the Cityscape Series.

Onni: Jessica welcome!

JHawk: Thanks for having me.

Onni: So I’m just going to jump right in – I read your bio at the end of Come Undone, and you’ve pretty much given up your day job to work on writing full-time. What pushed you to do this? Weren’t you scared?

JHawk: Well, I have this ’30 under 30′ list that I started in college, but it only has two things on it: write a book and swim with sharks. After school, I moved to Costa Rica for almost two years, where I picked up surfing. Well – picked up isn’t right – more like fought and flailed and struggled until I finally got the hang of it. When it was time for me to move from the white-water to the line-up, I was scared out of mind. And that was why I knew I had to do it.

Onni: And writing a book?

JHawk: This was sort of the same thing. Quitting my job was, and still is, scary. Writing this book was scary. Putting it out into the world… well, it was worse than making the leap to the line-up. But every time I hopped on my board and rode a wave, it was worth every minute. And if there are people who connect with my story, who really get it, then it’s worth it too. I have one year left to swim with sharks. (I sincerely hope I never unknowingly surfed with sharks!)

Onni: I re-read Come Undone to refresh my memory for this interview and I didn’t think it would be possible to like it more, but I did! Olivia is a complex character, but a sympathetic one. Can you give any insights into the journey she’ll face in the next book(s)?

JHawk: Thank you, what a compliment! Olivia is definitely complex, and she becomes even more so as the story continues. Her journey won’t be easy… trust me, I wanted to baby her, but I couldn’t. Come Alive is dark and emotional. Olivia’s already come undone, but before she can come out the other side, she has to come apart – and some difficult questions will be raised.

Onni: Olivia has a ‘difficult’ (to put it mildly) relationship with her mother that was touched on in Come Undone – will we meet her in the Come Alive?

JHawk: Yes and no. Neither of her parents actually appears in the second book, but the reader will learn more about Olivia’s relationship with her mom and where she comes from. But as we know, Olivia isn’t one to give it up easily – so their issues will be covered further in the third book.

Onni: What prompted you to write a story about deception, passion and love? Adultery is a topic that authors these days generally steer clear of, yet some of the best love stories (e.g. The English Patient and the End of the Affair) have included forbidden, star-crossed lovers. How did you go about making them sympathetic and not simply the ‘bad guys’ doing bad things?

JHawk: That’s a great question. I’ve done research and I know adultery is a tough topic. I think it scares people, so I find it utterly fascinating. Cheating is one of the worst crimes a person can commit, so I had to know – why do it? What’s the rationale? In love, nothing is black and white. Adulterers are branded with a scarlet “A”, but things aren’t always what they seem. I wanted to show another side to it. I wanted to tell a real story, not something with sugar on top.

Which leads me to the next part of your question – it was very tempting to make things easier on myself by having Bill & Olivia be engaged or dating rather than married, or by turning Bill into an unsympathetic jerk. That would’ve been the easy way out, though. I continually refer back to a Tolstoy quote that goes something like, “The best stories don’t come from ‘good vs. bad,’ but from ‘good vs. good.’”

Onni: So what does romance mean to you?

JHawk: I’ve always thought one of the most romantic things is knowing that out of everyone, somebody chose you. To them, you’re not just anyone. The first scene of the book, Olivia and David have this moment where, in a crowded room, they are inexplicably drawn to each other. But Olivia is jarred back to reality by her husband. So what happens when there’s someone else in the picture? That’s where things get complicated. Do you honor this commitment no matter what? And if not, how can you know if what you feel is only passion or something more? This concept will take a front seat in Come Alive. I hope readers will ask themselves what they’d do in Olivia’s position. There are no right or wrong answers, but I hope it gets people thinking.

Onni: How are you hoping to develop both Olivia and David’s characters in the coming books?

JHawk: I want to put Olivia through the ringer. Then I want the reader to transform with her. It’s important to me that every character develops naturally and realistically. Each will be faced with hardship, and so we’ll get to see their true selves emerge in the process. They’ll break rules, do immoral things. Does that make them bad people?

Bill (Olivia’s husband) becomes more of a person in the second book. He has to, in order for the reader to understand what’s happening in Olivia’s mind. And David has his own past to face. He can’t get away so easily with the reputation he has. What does he actually want from Olivia? He’s got to go through the ringer a bit too.

Onni: Moving on to you now – who are your favourite authors and why?

JHawk: I like authors that aren’t afraid to push boundaries, to “go there.” I tend to jump around, so I don’t necessarily have favorites, but I do have favorite books. Gone with the Wind: I didn’t know the story and hadn’t seen the movie when I read it a couple years ago, so I was going crazy up until the last sentence. I consumed that book. I also love Anna Karenina. It wasn’t necessarily my inspiration for this story, but I really connected with that book and so there are some similar themes between them.

Onni: And lastly: any plans beyond the Cityscape Series you’d like to share?

JHawk: I have been so totally immersed in Cityscape that no, not really. I do keep a file of ideas when they come up, so I definitely have some thoughts, but nothing concrete. One book I have in my mind would more likely veer toward contemporary fiction, rather than romance and even more likely, it would deal with a very controversial topic – even more so than adultery.

Onni: Well, I can’t wait for Come Alive and anything else you turn your hand to. Thank you so much for chatting to me today – it’s been great!

Come Alive will release on May 30th, but you can win a copy of Come Undone here.

Cover Reveal: ‘Come Alive’ by Jessica Hawkins

Hi everyone – Onnica here. I’m super-excited to share with you the new cover of ‘Come Alive’, which is Book #2 in the Cityscape Series.

The sequel to ‘Come Undone’ should be with us in a matter of weeks (release date is pencilled in for 30 May) and I’m trying to be patient. (Really I am!) If you haven’t read Come Undone yet, get on it!

ComeAlive_Cover

Cover Photo: © iStockphoto.com/VikaValter

Curious to know what’s in store for the Olivia and David in this instalment? Here’s the synopsis:

Determined to move on with her life, Olivia Germaine has vowed to forget David Dylan. Struggling to keep her head above water, she focuses on her new promotion and refuses to drown in the memory of their night together.

But when Olivia realizes what life without David means, she must decide if she is willing to risk everything for him . . . and if she is ready to reopen the wounds of her past.

Can Olivia move forward with her marriage despite her feelings for David?

And can David stay away like he promised?

Coming soon: Watch this space, as we’ll be interviewing Jessica and I’ll be asking her about love, romance and her inspiration for the delectable David…don’t miss it!

Come Undone by Jessica Hawkins

Come UndoneBook: Come Undone

Series: Cityscape Series

Author: Jessica Hawkins

Reviewed by: Onnica

Basic Story: Olivia Germaine has it all – blossoming career, loving husband and a great social life. The life she’s carved out for herself bears no resemblance to that of her turbulent childhood and that is how she wants it to remain.
A chance encounter with a handsome stranger one night turns her well-ordered life on its head in an instant. He is able to see through her perfect veneer as none of her friends or family can. David Dylan enters Olivia’s life suddenly through her demanding job and despite their mutual attraction, both parties are determined not to cross that line.
Despite David’s reputation as a philanderer, a series of circumstances throw them together more and more and soon Olivia has to decide whether the life she has is in fact the life she wants.

Why you should read this: I read this book by chance (a recommendation on Twitter) and I could not put it down. David Dylan is mysterious, determined but also caring, sensitive and very, very passionate. He doesn’t deserve his reputation and genuinely wants to do right by Olivia. Olivia is complex – and her story will draw you in. Why is she so closed off and will she ever be ready to confront her issues? Despite some sketchy behaviour on her part, I couldn’t hate her.

What you might hate: Judith my blog pal absolutely hates stories about cheaters (she’ll probably berate me mercilessly about my choice) and usually I’d have to agree, but this story raises an interesting question – what do you do if you’ve married the wrong person? Do you stick with it, or not? I think you’ll also sympathise with these characters to a certain extent – they’re not bad people.

Rating: 4/5 I think it’s a great debut from a new author and I’m really looking forward to the final book in this series, which comes out in spring 2013. I’m still thinking about David Dylan 24 hours later!