Tag Archives: Aly Martinez

New Release! The Fall Up by Aly Martinez *Review, Excerpt and Giveaway*

Maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.

the fall up book tour

The Fall Up
by Aly Martinez

A Contemporary Romance
For Release October 26th 2015

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I wanted to jump.
He made me fall.

As a celebrity, I lived in the public eye, but somewhere along the way, I’d lost myself in the spotlight.

Until he found me.

Sam Rivers was a gorgeous, tattooed stranger who saved my life with nothing more than a simple conversation.

But we were both standing on that bridge for a reason the night we met. The secrets of our pasts brought us together—and then tore us apart.

Could we find a reason to hold on as life constantly pulled us down?

Or maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.

 

the fall up cover ebook

Amazon | iBooks | Kobo

 

Review

4 stars

Levy is an award winning singer going through the motions of her life. She performs, she volunteers…Wash. Rinse. Repeat. However, she doesn’t seem to want to change a thing about it, even though it’s slowly draining her both mentally and physically. Her only form of escape these days is standing on a bridge alone at night. Little does she know how her life will come to change when she decides to strike up a conversation with the handsome stranger next to her.

What I enjoyed the most about this story was how Aly Martinez showcased Sam and Levy’s connection every chance she got. Be it through quiet exchanges, heated looks, flirty banter or just plain old sex scenes, Sam and Levy’s connection jumped off the page. Of course, it helped tremendously that they had an underlying yet intense chemistry that made itself know from the very start.

As I’ve come to expect from this author, Aly also delivered in the range of emotions she brought to the page. Both Sam and Levy were harboring some pretty deep issues and these in turn affected their relationship and their lives as individuals. But what I appreciated the most was the fact that although the emotions were intense and the story dealt with some heavy subjects, it never detracted from the romance or its sweet flirty vibe. At least not for me and that’s saying something. 😉

Another element I came to enjoy a lot, were the characters and their growth throughout the story. It was great to see how Levy came to recognize her weaknesses without ever losing sight of who she was and what she wanted out of her life or her career. It made her journey as the story progressed that much more enjoyable knowing that she was setting herself straight so she could succeed in building something with Sam.

Sam was no slouch either. He was fighting his way through his sister’s death and the guilt he felt in regards to that event. He recognized the potential of what he was starting to develop with Levy, so he pushed on because he couldn’t be the man Levy needed if he didn’t heal himself first. I came to admire his loyalty to his friends and family and his determination to make things work with Levy whatever obstacles were thrown in his way.

Of course, there was the added heat element. Although their chemistry was easily palpable it was slow in burning until finally (FINALLY!) they gave in to their attraction. That first kiss alone and thee subsequent encounter was well worth the wait. Thank you Aly!

All in all, a fantastic mix of elements that brought about a sweet, fun and emotional read.

*I received a copy of this title in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

the fall up teaser use 1

 

Excerpt

“Thank fuck!” Sam said, swinging the door open before Devon even had the car in park.

“Oh, this isn’t my place. We’re just dropping Devon off. I’m about twenty minutes across town?”  I tossed him a sugary smile then boldly shifted my hand into his lap, purposely brushing the bulge under his denim.

Grabbing my wrist, he narrowed his eyes and called out, “Devon, I’m gonna need to borrow a bedroom.”

I burst out laughing as Devon cursed loudly.

“Fine. This is my place. No smoking inside though,” I snipped as I climbed from the SUV.

“You better have some seriously exciting extracurricular activities to keep me distracted, then.”

“I have Ping-Pong!”

“Not exactly what I was thinking.” He mischievously cocked his head. “But I guess paddles and balls are as good a start as any.” Dipping down, he hoisted me over his shoulder. “Point me to the Ping-Pong table, my lady.”

I didn’t. I laughed hysterically as he carried me inside. Then I directed him to my bedroom instead.

I heard Devon locking up the house as Sam deposited me on the bed.

“Jesus. This view.”  He pushed the curtains back. “Why the hell would you ever go up to the bridge when you have this here?”

“I don’t know,” I answered, pulling my earrings off and placing them on my nightstand.

Oh, but I knew. It might not have been what had originally sent me up that bridge, but it was why my feet carried me back every night. And that very reason was currently standing in front of me with entirely too much clothing on.

“You want a beer?” I asked, sliding my shoes off.

“Nah, I’m good.” He faced me, and I could tell something was off with his demeanor. He didn’t inch any closer. Instead, his lips were tight and his eyes uncomfortably flashed around the room.

It suddenly didn’t feel like Sam standing in front of me at all.

He felt like a stranger who had just come face-to-face with Levee Williams.

Damn it.

“Why are you looking at me like that? Are you about to freak out?” I whispered, nervously moistening my lips.

He shoved his hands into his pockets. “I’m not really sure yet. But I’m gonna need you to stop licking your lips long enough for me to figure it out.” His mouth cracked into a wide grin, and my shoulders relaxed.

Now that was a flash of my Sam.

“Want to tell me what’s going on?” I asked.

“It’s just… I think this is the first time I’ve realized that you’re some big-time celebrity. I might be in over my head here, Designer Shoes.”

“I just make music, Sam.” I returned his smile and very slowly prowled in his direction. “Imagine how I feel though. You’re Samuel Nathan Rivers. A tough, tattooed furniture designer who makes six figures a year but is too afraid to tell his mommy he votes democratic.” I giggled as he frowned humorously. Stopping in front of him, I dragged a fingernail down his chest then teased the waistband of his jeans. “Have you considered that maybe I’m the one who’s in over her head here?” I leaned forward to nip at his lips, but he spun us around.

“Excellent point. I’m going to need you to try really hard to keep it together, Levee. You haven’t even seen my six-pack and huge cock, yet.” He smirked and attempted to return my nip, but I stepped out of his reach.

“You brought beer and chicken?” I feigned excitement.

That one corny joke was all it took to bring my Sam back completely.

With a sexy smile and a coy shrug, he seductively backed me toward the bed. “What can I say? I like to be prepared.”

“Clearly,” I breathed.

He moved in close so his lips were only a centimeter away, but for as much as I wanted him, it was agonizing. “Clearly,” he repeated, his smoky yet sweet breath breezing across my mouth.

His strong arm looped around my waist, tugging me against his chest, while I stared into his hooded eyes, eagerly waiting for him to make a move.

Any move.

Every move.

 

the fall up teaser use

 

About the Author

aly martinez

Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. Currently living in South Carolina, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.

After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. Five books later, she shows no signs of slowing. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 

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Excerpt Reveal! The Fall Up by Aly Martinez

Maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.

the fall up cover ebook

The Fall Up
by Aly Martinez

A Contemporary Romance
For Release October 26th 2015

add-to-goodreads-button31

 

I wanted to jump.
He made me fall.

As a celebrity, I lived in the public eye, but somewhere along the way, I’d lost myself in the spotlight.

Until he found me.

Sam Rivers was a gorgeous, tattooed stranger who saved my life with nothing more than a simple conversation.

But we were both standing on that bridge for a reason the night we met. The secrets of our pasts brought us together—and then tore us apart.

Could we find a reason to hold on as life constantly pulled us down?

Or maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.

 

Excerpt
Chapter One

Levee

It was raining. Isn’t that the way all great love stories start? And also usually end? The midnight air was cool against my skin as I stared off that bridge. My blond wig was secured in place by a headband, and chunky sunglasses covered my whiskey-colored eyes. I didn’t look like myself any more than I felt it. Bruises from the night before painted my legs while fresh scabs covered my knees, but it was the hollowness in my chest that hurt the most.

Yep. Still me.

Which was exactly why I was standing on that bridge, wishing for the mental fortitude to hurl myself off.

A man’s voice interrupted my thoughts. “You finally gonna do it tonight?”

I instinctually smoothed my fake hair down and pressed the bridge of my glasses closer to my face, sealing out any possible glance he could catch. I stared ahead as I snapped, “Excuse me?”

“I’ve seen you here three nights in a row now. I was just wondering if tonight was going to be the night you finally jump.”

My eyes flashed wide, but since they were covered by the dark glasses, my reaction remained hidden. “I just like the view. That’s all.” What a load of shit.

I watched him nod out of the corner of my eye. “Yeah me too. It’s gorgeous up here.”

Shuffling my feet to the side, I attempted to slip away as he pulled a pack of cigarettes from his pocket and offered it my way.

“You want one?”

I shook my head and then crept down a few inches to put distance between us.

“Suit yourself.” He used a hand to shield the lighter from the wind, but the constant sprinkle of rain made his task impossible. “Damn it,” he cursed with the cigarette tucked between his lips. “Little help?” he asked, swinging his gaze to mine.

Arching an eyebrow, I asked, “With what?”

“It’s raining…and windy…and I’m trying to burn one.” He tilted his head, equally as incredulous.

“You want me to call God? We had a bad breakup recently, but he might be willing to do me one last favor.”

He breathed an exaggerated sigh of relief. “That would be fantastic. What’s the big guy’s response time like these days? Last time we spoke, it was”—he paused to look at his watch—“oh, twenty-seven years.”

A soft laugh bubbled from my throat, and one side of his mouth lifted in a gorgeous grin.

“I’m not exactly in the mood to wait that long, so maybe you could just block the wind with your body?” His smile spread as he stepped toward me, forcing my gaze to nervously bounce away.

“Sorry. Can’t help you there. Lung cancer and I broke up too.” After gathering the back of my wig into a ponytail, I pulled it over my shoulder and turned away from him. The chill of the wind blasted my face and roared over my ears as it rushed past me.

I went back to staring out at the dark, choppy water, becoming lost in the idea of how cold it might be.

Is tonight the night?

No.

My feet would more than likely never leave the edge of that bridge, but there was a definite reason why I was imagining ending it all. Exactly zero other people in the world would understand why. I had it all, and I dreamed about losing it all—more often than I would ever admit, even to myself.

After stepping out of my heels, I slipped my foot between the bars on the railing. The wind slammed my bruised leg against the metal. “Shit,” I hissed as pain shot through me.

“You think that hurts? Imagine falling twenty-five stories then crashing into the water, which might as well be concrete, at speeds upward of seventy miles per hour,” the man said, leaning on the metal railing next to me.

“Wow. Someone’s done some research,” I said sarcastically, barely sparing him a glance.

“Daily,” he responded frankly, causing my surprised gaze to swing to his. Simply shrugging at my reaction, he turned his back to the railing and propped himself up on his colorfully tattooed forearms. “You forget I’ve been here the last three nights in a row too.” He smirked, lifting the cigarette up to his lips for a deep inhale.

“Listen, I’m not going to jump if you’re some kind of caped crusader on a mission. I just needed some fresh air.” I pointedly glanced at his cigarette.

A laugh escaped his mouth in a grey puff. “Fresh air is overrated. Especially given the reason you’re standing here.” He knowingly arched a dark-brown eyebrow.

“Riiiiight,” I drawled, rolling my eyes behind my glasses. “Okay, well, I was just heading out anyway.”

“Then my work here is done.” He bowed, and the corner of my mouth lifted in a smile as I stepped back into my shoes and walked away.

I shook my head at the random stranger. Then, a thought struck me, stopping me only a few feet away. Spinning back to face him, I asked, “Wait. Were you reaching out to me as a cry for help?”

“Oh look. Designer Shoes has a conscience!” He dropped his cigarette to the damp ground, stepping on it with the toe of his well-worn, black boots. Bending over, he picked the butt up and tucked it in his pocket.

At least he didn’t litter.

“Oh look. Tattooed Stalker has jokes!” I smarted back.

He smiled, pulling another cigarette from his pocket and then pausing just before guiding it between his lips. “Were you judging me based on my tattoos? I’m offended.” He feigned anguish then laughed while lifting his lighter to once again battle the wind for a nicotine fix.

I wanted to walk away, but he wasn’t wrong. I did have a conscience, and right then, I was worried that it might really be his night to make good on his apparent numerous visits to the bridge.

With a huff, I headed back towards him, praying that I could wrap it up as quickly as possible then head back to my house for a few hours of sleep. Or, more likely, lie awake while staring at the ceiling and crying.

“Are you planning to jump for real?” I asked.

His smile fell as he focused on the water. “Nah. I don’t have the balls to do something like that. Talking to you wasn’t a plea for help or anything. You just look worse than usual tonight.” His gaze slid down to my battered legs.

“Oh!” I exclaimed in understanding. “That’s not at all what you’re thinking. I fell down some stairs.”

He quirked his lips in disbelief.

“I’m serious!”

“I’m sure you are,” he told the wind. “You can go. I’m good.”

I could have walked away, but for some reason, I pulled my jacket tighter around my shoulders and silently stood there while he finished his cigarette.

After a final deep inhale, he flicked it over the railing of the bridge.

Apparently, he does litter.

Turning to me, his face became serious. “You need to call the cops before he makes the decision to end it all for you.”

“Who?” I asked, watching the burning ember hit the metal column then explode in a million different sparks before disappearing down to the water below.

Lucky cigarette.

“The stairs…and whatever inanimate object you’re blaming for those bruises you’re hiding behind sunglasses at one in the morning. You should call the cops before…” His voice trailed off, but his dark gaze narrowed on mine. His eyes bored into my hidden stare, combining with the rain and wind to send chills down my spine.

I took the moment to secretly assess him. He was insanely sexy, but nothing like the men I was accustomed to. His chin was the kind of scruffy that made women weak, but it was obvious he didn’t pay four hundred dollars for his personal hairstylist to shape it. Judging by his shaggy, brown hair that begged for me to thread my fingers in it, I wasn’t sure he was even a barbershop kind of guy. He stood a few inches taller than I was in heels, so I pegged him at around six one. And while his tattooed forearms were deliciously sculpted and his shoulders were notably defined, his body didn’t appear to be swollen with muscles from hours spent at the gym. By the aura of bad boy he gave off, I would have expected him to be a self-consumed, arrogant prick.

He wasn’t though.

He was just an average guy worrying about the well-being of an average girl.

Only he couldn’t have been more wrong, and a pang of guilt hit me hard.

Just not hard enough for me to do anything to correct his assumptions about who I was.

Very softly, I attempted to put his fears to rest. “I promise it’s not what you’re thinking.”

“Okay,” he responded, unconvinced. He nodded to himself before dragging another cigarette from his pocket.

I watched him struggle for a second before I scooted towards him, using my body to block the wind.

Biting the cigarette between his straight, white teeth, he smiled devilishly around it. “Thanks.” Flicking the flame to life, he hunched over until a stream of smoke swirled up from the red tip.

“You should stop smoking.”

“Noted.” He exhaled through his nose.

We went back to silently staring over the side of the bridge. The familiar lights of the San Francisco skyline danced all around us. And, even as tourists and locals alike passed by us, I felt an odd, and unbelievably comfortable, isolation standing there with him.

When my teeth began to chatter, his attention was drawn my way. “I’m not here to jump. You really can go.”

I nodded but didn’t move away.

He chuckled, crossing his arms over his chest and rubbing his biceps for warmth.

“How are you not frozen?” I asked, taking in his thin Henley for the first time since we met.

Shrugging, he dropped his cigarette, answering as he bent to retrieve it. “Thick skin? I’m used to it? I come here a lot? I’m half Eskimo?”

I eyed him suspiciously. “You’re cold, aren’t you?”

“Fucking. Freezing,” he admitted, tucking his arms close to his body and blowing into his hands. “I just came up here for one smoke. Then I saw you. Now, come on. Be a lady and loan a man a jacket,” he joked, tugging on the edge of my coat.

I laughed, hugging it even tighter around my body and stepping out of his reach. “How about we both just leave? Then neither of us have to worry about the other plummeting to their death.”

“Sounds like an amazing plan.” He shoved his hands into the pockets of the tattered jeans riding low on his hips. As we began the hike back down to the foot of the bridge, he asked, “You have a name, Designer Shoes?”

I smiled and shook my head, not willing to lie—or divulge the truth.

“Yeah. Me either,” he replied.

I bit my bottom lip to suppress a laugh.

Side by side, we trudged the rest of the way in silence.

When we got to the foot of the bridge, he turned to face me and sighed. “Well, I genuinely hope I never see you again.”

My head snapped back in shock, and maybe a little hurt.

But he quickly corrected himself. “No! I just mean… Shit.” He ran a nervous hand through his hair while I watched, amused. “I just mean, given the way we met… I…um. I hope you never have a reason to go back up there.”

I teasingly tipped my head to the side. “But I really like the view.”

He cleared his throat. “Right. Of course, the view. Okay, well, have a good night.”

“You too.” I smiled tightly, but my feet didn’t budge. I told myself that it was because I didn’t want him to see my car or the bodyguard waiting for me behind the wheel. But, in reality, I just wasn’t ready to leave. Home wasn’t where I wanted to be. I didn’t actually want to be anywhere.

Not even standing at the foot of a bridge, talking to a witty and sexy man.

Okay, maybe I wanted that a little bit.

“Yep. Have a good night,” he repeated, shoving his hands inside his pockets and slowly backing away.

I gave him a quick wave, which he returned before he jogged in the other direction.

I smiled to myself, shaking my head at the entire interaction—secretly lamenting that it hadn’t been longer.

 

Sensual woman kissing her handsome husband

 

About the Author

aly martinez

Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. Currently living in South Carolina, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.

After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. Five books later, she shows no signs of slowing. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Cover Reveal: The Fall Up by Aly Martinez

Maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.

the fall up cover ebook

The Fall Up
by Aly Martinez
Expected for Release October 26th 2015

add-to-goodreads-button31

 

I wanted to jump.
He made me fall.
As a celebrity, I lived in the public eye, but somewhere along the way, I’d lost myself in the spotlight.
Until he found me.
Sam Rivers was a gorgeous, tattooed stranger who saved my life with nothing more than a simple conversation.
But we were both standing on that bridge for a reason the night we met. The secrets of our pasts brought us together—and then tore us apart.
Could we find a reason to hold on as life constantly pulled us down?
Or maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.

the fall up teaser 2

About the Author

aly martinez

Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. Currently living in South Carolina, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.

After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. Five books later, she shows no signs of slowing. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

the fall up cover

New Release: Among the Echoes by Aly Martinez *Review*

 

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Among the Echoes
by Aly Martinez

A Contemporary Romance
Released August 4, 2014

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My name was Dr. Erica Hill. I was a victim, then a witness, and then I ceased to exist altogether.

I may still be breathing, but stripped of my identity, I have long since stopped living. I am invisible, and my life depends on my ability to stay in the shadows.

But he sees me.

Slate Andrews is the embodiment of everything I have been taught to avoid. He’s rich and famous, and one image of him with a woman would earn millions for any paparazzi lucky enough to snap it. He has vowed to protect me with his life, yet he exposes me with his every breath. I should be stronger and walk away. I should disappear. But I’m terrified he would come after me.

I’m on the run, determined not to take him down with me but absolutely unable to let him go.

My name is Riley Peterson…at least for today.

 

Amazon US | Amazon UK | B&N

 

Review

4 stars

Erica hasn’t been herself for a while–literally and figuratively. She has been on the run pretending, trying to live a life that’s not her own and constantly looking over her shoulder in fear. Thankfully, she has a man she trusts who has been with her every step of the way. But Leo can’t help her heal all her wounds so she continues on broken, fearful and hiding.

Slate doesn’t like living in the limelight, so he escapes whenever he can. He takes refuge in his hometown away from fans and the paparazzi. And then he meets Riley, a woman who reminds Slate of his past. A woman he wants to protect.

Aly Martinez is fast becoming one of my favorite authors. Her stories are often unique, always engaging and her characters unforgettable. And I am glad to say that she did not disappoint with this one.

What I liked about this story was that Aly didn’t pull any punches in bringing a darker, edgier element to it from the very beginning. The first chapter drew me and didn’t let go until the very end. I found it fascinating that she took an often used set-up and made it her own.

Although fairly predictable in some ways, the story maintained a unique quality to it. Be it the addition of Leo as Erica’s protector or the intrigue behind it all, I don’t know. But I liked that I was kept in a constant state of suspense. I wondered over what had transpired after that horrible day, guessed on how they managed to survive so far and tried to figure out how they would get out of it all while still enjoying the blossoming romance between Erica and Slate.

The author did a great job in keeping me interested by giving me glimpses into who Erica was before, how the event had affected her and how she was managing her life now. I found myself cheering her on when she made a step in the right direction and wanting to shake some sense into her when she retreated and gave into her fears.

As for the romance, I do admit that it was a bit too rushed. But it helped that I liked Slate and that the author used a mix of funny, light and candid moments along with flirty moments and emotional ones to enhance their connection. I liked experiencing how their initial connection grew from physical attraction to something more with their every interaction, I especially liked how they each helped the other open up to let the other one in.

I am still curious about Leo and the epilogue only served to increase my curiosity. I can’t wait to know more about him since I liked what i got to see from him in this installment.

All in all, a great romance between a pair of characters that shared amazing chemistry with plenty of engaging moments and a few twists and turns to round it all up.

*I received a copy of this title in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

 

 

About the Author

Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five- including a set of twins. Currently living in Chicago, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.

After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.

Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page

 

Stolen Course (Wrecked and Ruined #2) by Aly Martinez *Review and Excerpt*

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Stolen Course (Wrecked and Ruined #2)
by Aly Martinez

A New Adult Romance Cover
Released May 21, 2014

Playlist: Spotify

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I fell in love with Manda Baker eight years ago, and I loved her to the core of her soul. We were supposed to have that elusive happily ever after and spend a lifetime together. But that was all before she was STOLEN from me.

Her best friend, Sarah Erickson, killed her. It wasn’t intentional. It was far worse. Everyone claims it was just an accident, but I can see through the lies. Even if it’s with my dying breath, I will make her pay for what she did.

Fate hates me. It robbed me of my first love and left me to navigate through this world emotionless and numb. Then, one day, spiteful fate gave me a woman to fill my shattered soul and make me feel again. It gave me Emma Jane Erickson. Now I spend my days searching for the answers that will ruin Sarah and my nights falling in love with her sister—the one person who is bound and determined to save her.

But what happens when everything you know to be true explodes around you? Who will be left to pick up the pieces, and who will need to be saved from the wreckage?

 

Buy the Book

Amazon US | Amazon UK | B&N

 

Review

5-stars
Wow! And here I though Changing Course was an exceptional read!

What makes this story even more extraordinary?! The range in emotions from Caleb.

Experiencing the grief, the hesitation and the overall frustration Caleb deals with made this story worthy of the anticipation of starting it. As he learns to live a life without Manda, we see a Caleb that is heartbroken, filled with hatred and living a life without substance. But as he gets to know Emma and confronts the feelings she brings forth, he hesitates, he fears and ultimately surrenders.

(And yes, I admit he was extremely hot and sexy–what’s not to love?!)

I loved Caleb’s journey of accepting this second chance in love. Although he had his doubts, he gives the connection he forms with Emma a chance to grow. And grow it did! With honest interactions, flirty banter and some passionate moments shared between them, Aly Martinez established and deepened the initial connection that brought these two together.

I enjoyed their rapport–they brought out the best out of each other–which made it that much more of an enjoyable read. Although I didn’t particularly liked Sarah, I admit that she played a pivotal role in this story. I understood much better where she was coming from which ultimately helped me to understand Emma’s loyalty and determination to help her through this time.

As a whole the story worked too. The conflict was dealt in a way that didn’t take away from the romance, which I appreciated. This time around some questions about the accident were answered and some other issues arose. I can’t wait to see how it all plays out!

All in all, an emotional roller-coaster with complex characters that felt deeply and who fought for their chance at love.

*I received a copy of this title in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

Excerpt

“Do you always act like a kindergartener when you like a girl?”

“Who said I like you?” I mock surprise.

Yeah, I gave myself away. She knows that I think she’s hot, but wanting to have sex with someone is very different than actually liking them. At least it is in my world. I’ve had sex with numerous women since Manda. Never once have I even thought twice about them though. That is until Emma ran into my life.

“You called back, didn’t you?”

Damn it, busted again! She’s right. I like her even though I know absolutely nothing about her. I need to remedy this without acting like a broody, sullen teenager. Who knows. Maybe I will be able to shake her once I get to know her a little better.

“What’s your favorite color, Emma Jane Erickson?”

“What is this, the get-to-know-each-other portion of the night? I never thought you would be so cliché, Detective Jones.” She laughs for a second before answering, “Orange.”

“Oh, come on. No one likes orange.”

“I do.”

“Why?”

“Why not? It’s different and bold. It stands out amongst a blank world of black, white, and gray. Orange is the early morning sun stretching across the sky and the color of a burning ember standing tall in the middle of a beach bonfire. It’s leaves in the fall, carrots in Nana’s vegetable soup on a cold winter day, tulips in the spring, and the ladybugs in the middle of the grassy park on a hot summer afternoon. Orange is life. It’s unexpected but beautiful.” She stops talking, and her depth silences me too.

I consider myself a very artistic person. I draw, paint, and build. Creation is my escape. And to listen to this woman wax poetic about a single simple color steals my breath. It embeds itself somewhere deep inside. A place where no woman, especially an Erickson, has any business being.

“Oh, and it’s my favorite flavor of candy too.”

And with those simple words, I know I’m in trouble. So fucking much trouble. I begin to laugh, and I mean really laugh. The kind that sticks with you even after the joke is long since forgotten, and I do it for the first time in almost five years. Fuck.

 

 

Changing Course (Wrecked and Ruined #1)

18753789

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About the Author

Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. Currently living in Chicago, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.

After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.

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Changing Course by Aly Martinez *Review and Excerpt*

Welcome to the Blog Tour for Changing Course by Aly Martinez. Below you will find all relevant information about this emotionally charged romance along with my review.

Changing Course Cover

Title: Changing Course (Wrecked and Ruined #1)

Author: Aly Martinez

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: January 29, 2014

Synopsis

I met Sarah Kate Erickson when I was 21 years old. I was lucky enough to keep her for seven years before a tragic accident stole her from me. She didn’t die, but sometimes I think it would have been easier if she had.

I lived in a haze for those four years after the accident. Catering to her every need, even though she hated the very sight of my face. I tried to hold on to her and the future that we were supposed to build together. But you can’t hold on to someone that doesn’t exist anymore.

It wasn’t until I met Jesse Addison, a barista at the local coffee shop, that I realized I didn’t just lose Sarah that tragic night, I lost myself as well. Jesse taught me how to let go of the past and learn to love again. But what happens when your past haunts your present and the woman you used to love refuses to accept the woman you can’t live without?

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Review

5-stars

So there I was, hesitant about staring this book because although the blurb had caught my attention, I didn’t know how the story would be played out. Was this a love triangle type of story? Was there cheating involved?

The only way to answer those questions was to start reading, so I did. And my goodness, what a ride it was! Emotions collided, frustrations erupted, tragedy struck, connections deepened, passion erupted and love bloomed. I loved it all!

Brett thought he had found the love of his life in a feisty and charismatic woman he planned to spend the rest of his life with. After spending some of his best years with his wife, tragedy struck. His wife was a shell of the woman he fell in love with, but his sense of loyalty was hard to shake off. Haunted by his former life and conflicted over a situation that was out of his hands, Brett went through the motions of his life, but never really allowing himself to live it to the fullest.

In comes Jesse. Funny, friendly and used to keeping to herself, Jesse has been attracted to Brett from the moment she first laid eyes on him. After crushing on him for a time she finally manages to gather her courage to ask him out. Doubting his ability to form any sort of attachment to Jesse, Brett hesitates in accepting Jesse’s invitation. However, his best friend and partner took matters into his own hands leading Brett to find love again.

What follows is a story that will tug at your heart-strings while leaving you with a foolish grin on your face when all was said and done.

Brett’s second chance story lead him through a journey into self-discovery where he got to experience every type of emotion known to man. From confusion to lust all the way through fear and elation, Brett’s story was as heartbreaking as it was heartwarming.

Aly Marinez did an amazing job in drawing me into the story by allowing me to connect to Brett from the first few pages. His voice was engaging and his happiness at falling in love with Sarah was contagious. So when the time came for that relationship to end, like Brett, I was heart broken. His emotions jumped off the page, which only served to endear him to me more. I wanted to take away his confusion, to move on and believe in love again.

I adored Jesse as much as I loved Brett. She wasn’t Brett’s type but exactly what he needed. She brought all his protective instincts to the surface and her ways fueled his passion and sense of humor. It was hard to see her struggle with the situation they were facing, but although she wasn’t experienced in the relationship department, she had great common sense and a bigger heart.

I appreciated the fact that the author didn’t make it easy for Brett and Jesse’s relationship to stand its ground. Sure they shared a connection, but after experiencing Brett’s history, I would have found it unbelievable for him not to question this new-found connection he had with Jesse. I enjoyed watching them get to know each other. Their interactions were fun, flirtatious and real. Each one brought them closer together and deepened their connection.

Of course, they had great chemistry too. I liked what they brought out of each other whenever they got together. There were moments where his softer side came to the surface and others where his passionate was unleashed. Then there was Jesse and the way she responded to him, letting her inhibitions go and accepting the lust her attraction to Brett brought about. And when their emotions came to play? Brilliant!

I enjoyed all aspects of this story. From the secondary characters to the craziness that surrounded Brett’ journey, it all came together seamlessly bringing forth a beautiful second chance story that was intense, romantic and completely worth my time.

As a debut novel and the first book in a series, Changing Course made for an excellent read. I can’t wait for Caleb’s story. What little I got to know about him intrigued me and I’m curious to know what’s in store for him.

Excerpt

“Shall we make a little bet?” I ask, twirling my thumbs like an evil madman.

“Aren’t you sick of losing yet?” She laughs so hard at her own joke, she almost rolls out of the chair. Her reaction alone is enough to make me laugh right along with her.

This girl is drunk…and beautiful. And drunk. And sexy as hell. And drunk. And so very fuckable. Did I mention drunk? She isn’t in the danger zone, where she is going to be hating her very existence tomorrow. She’s in that loose-lipped-say-things-that-will-make-you-cringe-the-next-day stage. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t enjoying the hell out of seeing her in this state.

Jesse always seems to have a filter when she talks to me. It’s as if, she analyzes every word in her mind twelve times before actually spitting out a sentence. Since she started drinking, she hasn’t stopped talking. She has officially made the leap from best friend’s little sister, to woman I want to fuck. Jesus, what the hell am I saying? Am I drunk too?

“So, is that a yes or no to the bet?” I smile, glancing down and catch a glimpse of her peaked chilled nipples. “You cold, Jess?” I ask, nodding down at her nipples noticeably showing thorough her skimpy excuse for a dress.

I watch her eyes travel down her own body and her cheeks immediately redden. Oh shit! I really am drunk! Why the fuck would I say that to her? Better yet, when the hell did I lose my filter tonight? Oh God, what else have I said to her without thinking? I frantically try to think of a way to moonwalk out of this conversation. She’s uncomfortable, and I’m mortified. We both know it too. It’s written all over our faces, but in our drunken states, neither one of us can think of anything to say.

Review

4 stars

About the Author

AuthorPhotoAlyM

I’m a 32 year old wife and stay at home mom to four kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. My life is crazy, which is probably why I drink entirely too much wine. Oh who am I kidding, I had a love affair with wine long before the kids came along. I was born and raised in Savannah Georgia, but we recently moved to Chicago. Let me tell you, this southern girl was not ready for the cold weather up here!

I’m an avid reader, but I haven’t always been that way. A few years ago my sister loaned me her Nook Color, and it changed my life forever. In the span of about two years, I read over 500 books. My newfound love of reading led me to start a book blog with two of my best friends. (Insert shameless plug here: WhiteZinBookends.com). Through WZ Bookends, I’ve had the opportunity to meet some of the most amazing authors, bloggers, and readers out there. Now that I have taken the leap into writing my own book, they’ve all shown me endless amounts of encouragement and support.

While driving home from Walmart one day in late October, a story embedded itself in my head and would not let go. It spiraled out of control until I finally opened my laptop and started writing. This journey has been a wild ride filled with tears, hand cramps, and tons of laughs. I love company, so follow me at one of the social links below and join me aboard this crazy train!

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