Release Day Blitz, Excerpt & Giveaway: Impossible-C.A. Gray

Young Adult Book Madness

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cooltext1756232230 copyIMPOSSIBLE is the final installment in the Piercing the Veil trilogy.

The Shadow Lord has the Philosopher’s Stone, and therefore an army of invincible penumbra. He also possesses the fragments of Excalibur, the legendary sword prophesied to be the instrument of either his own destruction, or that of the Child of the Prophecy. The sword, he knows, requires blood to be reforged… and he knows exactly whose blood he wants.

Meanwhile, the Watchers are desperate to steal back the fragments of Excalibur and find out how to reforge them before the Shadow Lord does. Isdemus places Peter and Lily in Carlion’s sister cities for safe-keeping until the war begins. But Peter and Lily have an idea that might enable the Watchers to steal back the fragments, in spite of the Shadow Lord’s invincible army. Their plan requires them to travel halfway across the world, to an…

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ARC Review & Interview: Chasing the Stars-J.D. Rivera

Mackenzie Blanchard’s life wasn’t easy; never had been, never would be. She thought things were looking up when she started yet another new school her senior year. She made friends and was enjoying life the best she could.


One friendship turned into something more, and just when she felt safe, things were ripped apart.


Hayes Morgan had never cared about anyone but himself. He was living the life he wanted, just having fun. He never dreamed that he would fall for the new girl in school.


What started out as a sweet friendship turned into something he never thought possible, until she vanished…


Their paths collide a year after they last saw each other, but they are both harboring secrets. Will they be able to trust and love each other again, or will the secrets rip them apart forever?

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3.5/5 Stars

***I received this eARC in exchange for an honest review and participation in this blog tour.

PROS:

  • When Hayes isn’t around other women, he’s charismatic, flirty, and just oozes sex appeal. He’s full of compassion and adoration for Mac, she’s his everything and he goes out of his way to make her feel like she lights up his life. This side of Hayes is way different than his partying side, who hits it and quits it, and then gets irate when girls talk to him after he got what he wanted. This Hayes charms and protects Mac, he always knows when she needs to be wrapped in his arms or keep quiet and just be there for her. Underneath all of his outlash, he’s an honest (brutally), wonderful guy who gives Mac something that she’s never had before, unconditional love. 
  • Domestic abuse is an emotional whirlwind of agony, heartache, depression that spirals into psychological trauma. It’s hard to read the physical beatings, which are graphic and coupled with screaming and verbal abuse, but it’s harder to see how it wears on Mac’s self-worth. A big part of Mac’s hesitancy to trust, to believe people can change, or to think that Hayes’ feelings for her might be real is because all of her life she’s been drilled in how worthless she is, how lazy, and horrible, and the fact that her mother stands by and watches, not saying anything when she cries out for help is heartbreaking. That Mac is able to overcome her abuse and open her heart to love is beautiful to read. She is still able to laugh and tease, and be the cheerful, gorgeous girl she is is beyond courageous, it’s pretty astounding and J.D. Rivera does an amazing job capturing the multiple layers of her character. 
  • Together, Hayes and Mac flip-flop between volatile and steamy. Their relationship is the perfect friendship, it’s easy-going, fun, and playful. The way these flirt and poke fun at each other sparks a sort of glow, I couldn’t stop smiling. The thoughtfulness and the way the get each other is romantic and natural. Other times, because they’re so stubborn, they clash and misunderstand each other. They both jump to conclusions and while Mac always thinks the worst, Hayes is perpetually confused. It’s dramatic, exhilarating, and made of sexual tension. 

CONS:

  • Hayes Morgan is a complete and utter asshat. There, I’ve said it. Despite all of his redeeming qualities, which really is only his love for Mac, it doesn’t make up for the majority of the novel treating women like a misogynistic pig. Sure, you can be the kind of man who doesn’t “do” serious relationships, who lets girls know that their sexual encounter is a one-time, meaningless thing, but there’s no need to be an inconsiderate jerk about it. The way he talks to women was shocking, abrasive, and frankly made him really unlikable several times in the book. You can be a playboy and yes, you can treat women like crap but I cringed every time he threw out those scalding truths. If you feel like a woman you just used for sex is worthless and meant nothing, you don’t have to call her a whore and throw it in her face because you can’t deal with your own issues. On top of that, what killed me was that Mac got some twisted pleasure half the time when Hayes treated his one-night-stands rudely. Go ahead and feel wonderful that Hayes treats her like his Northern Star but the fact that she just brushes his insults aside and actually preens at some of it made me question just how much I admired Mac. Hayes verbal abuse was sickening and despicable at times, and although he is a “recovering” playboy or someone that is going through a great change in character, it outweighed his charm. 
  • Many of the secondary characters fell flat and sort of fizzled out midway.
  • One of the subthreads, namely, Hayes’ father’s political position and the importance of keeping their relationship secret seemed like a huge deal and then it became a non-issue. There was no backlash or any other mention of his dad’s political image, I expected more drama or at least a conclusion to this aspect of the story.

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  1. Chasing the Stars seems like a shift from your earlier new adult romances. How is this book different, what inspired you to write it?

Yes, it is a little different! I had a dream about these characters and I had to write their story. It varies in the fact that they are meeting in high school and it’s a young love, but they also go through a lot to get to the end.

  1. Lately there’s been a lot of buzz about people being “over” the New Adult trend. Do you feel new adult is just a trend? What are your thoughts on this?

I don’t really know to be honest. I just write whatever is in my head. So some books that I write might be New Adult and some might be something completely different.:)

  1. Have you ever thought about writing something paranormal? What do you love about contemporary?

I don’t think I could write paranormal but I’ll never say never. I’m not really sure what it is about contemporary but I’ve always loved it.

  1. Tell me about your Trying series.

Trying to Get Over You is about a couple in college that have been together for some time. They are presented with some obstacles and have to fight for their relationship.

  1. Is there anything you’d like readers to know about Chasing the Stars?

Chasing the Stars is an emotional read but I hope it’s also a great love story. I hope everyone loves Hayes as much as I do.

  1. What inspires you to write?

I’ve always been a people watcher. Usually while I’m watching them I’ll be making up some story about them in my head. If it’s not from people watching, it’s from a dream.

  1. What are some of your favorite romances? TV, movies, books.

The Notebook. I loved that book and movie. I also love Gabriel and Julia from Sylvain Reynard’s Gabriel’s Inferno.

  1. What is some advice you’d give aspiring writers?

I would tell them to write, write, write. Never give up on your dreams.

  1. Do you do anything particular when you write? Have a specific playlist or favorite writing snack?

I don’t listen to playlists but I do have to eat Chex Mix while writing. 🙂

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J.D. Rivera lives in Oklahoma with her husband and two boys. Her life consists of school projects, homework, cartoon shows, and little league sports. She loves Diet Mountain Dew, the OKC Thunder, costume jewelry, the beach, and reading.

 

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Happy reading,
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