Book Blitz: The Dylan Dilemma

The Dylan Dilemma
Patricia B. Tighe
Published by: Swoon Romance
Publication date: April 24th 2018
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

High school senior Kenzie Harper-Shea has no time for dating, especially after the arrival of the basketball coach from hell. Now Kenzie has lost her confidence, is in a slump, and in danger of losing out on a scholarship to play college ball. The last thing she needs is her “vacation boyfriend,” Dylan McCoy, distracting her with warm smiles, inside jokes, and swoony kisses.

Dylan, however, is totally ready to date. He finally lives in the same town as Kenzie and is not about to lose the chance to let their relationship grow into something more. But for now, he’ll stay in the friend zone because he’s determined to find out what has her running scared. It can’t be just about basketball.

As Kenzie spends more time around Dylan, her feelings become a jumbled-up mess. It’s obvious they’re into each other. So, why does she panic whenever she thinks about dating him? Is it connected to basketball or to something deeper? She’s not sure. Does she have the courage to examine her heart, even if it means breaking Dylan’s?

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Author Bio:

The mother of two grown sons, Patricia B. Tighe lives in West Texas with her husband and dog. She eats way too much pizza, drinks way too much coffee, and watches way too much NFL football. On the bright side, she also reads and writes teen fiction. She promises to include as much romance, angst, and adventure as possible in her books.

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Excerpts:

Dinner with Dylan

Kenzie

On Friday night we sat around the dining room table using our company manners. I couldn’t do much else. The churning in my stomach at what I had to say to Dylan had become a cold dread settling in my chest and making it hard to breathe.

“Pass the rolls, please,” my mom said without looking at me. She was too busy enjoying the interaction between Dylan and Piper, who had been giggling all during dinner. Piper that is. Dylan just smiled a lot.

I passed the basket of bread to my mom, and refocused on my stew. Better that than staring across the candlelit table at Dylan, who looked completely edible. He wore a blue button-down shirt with the sleeves rolled up and his tortoise-shell glasses. Those glasses had always gotten to me. They made me want to get close enough to pull them off, slide my fingers into his thick honey-blond hair, and explore his mouth.

Sudden warmth rose in my chest, replacing the dread. I needed to stop this. Relationships had to be based on more than just physical attraction. Dylan and I had always excelled at the physical part—or at least flirting around it. But we’d never had the chance to experience the day to day give and take of being with somebody. And now he wanted that. I wanted to tell him yes, but I knew I couldn’t. I needed my head in my game, not longing for him. …

“Do you have any brothers or sisters?” Piper asked, gazing up at Dylan, her cheeks glowing pink.

He wiped his mouth with his napkin before answering. “I have an older brother. He’s in medical school in Boston.”

“Is he gonna be a doctor?”

“Yeah. Unless he changes his mind and runs away with the circus.”

Piper giggled. “He won’t do that.”

Dylan grinned. “No, he probably won’t.”

“How much older is he than you?”

“Seven years.”

Piper’s whole face lit up like Christmas. “We’re almost the same! Mackie is ten years older than me. That’s so old.”

Ugh. That nickname. Piper was the only one allowed to use it—mainly because she’d invented it. Mackenzie had been too much of a mouthful for a toddler. But using the name in front of Dylan? Not such a great idea. He looked at me, humor dancing in his green eyes. Yup. I’d be hearing that name again. “Yeah, really old,” he said, not breaking our gaze.


Prelude to a Kiss

Dylan

 

Satisfaction settled over me. “That’s not true.” Oh, Kenzie was jealous all right. Now to get her to admit it.

“I don’t believe this. You’re usually so good at reading people and you’ve totally messed up where she’s concerned. That girl likes you. As more than just a friend.”

I shook my head. “We’ve always joked around. It doesn’t mean anything.”

“She kept touching you.”

I gave her my best “you’re being ridiculous” face. “Kenzie—”

“No.” She strode over to me. “She slid her hand down your arm like this.” Kenzie trailed her fingers along my forearm.

I forced myself to ignore the tickling sensation. “So?”

“She played with your hair.”

“What? She did not.”

“She reached up and stuck her hand in your hair.” Kenzie lifted a hand but paused, leaving it waiting in the air.

“You mean when she was pulling that leaf out of my hair?”

“Oh, good grief, Dylan. You did nothave a leaf in your hair! She just wanted to touch you. Why can’t you admit it?”

I turned away like I was tired of the conversation. “You’re overreacting.”

She grabbed my shoulder, twisting me back around. “I know what I saw.”

We stood really close now, her hazel eyes glaring. They were tinged with blue, almost a light aquamarine color, and their intensity made me freeze in place. I wanted to pull her against me, to feel her arms tighten around me, but something was about to happen. Good or bad. I knew it. So I waited, not sure if it was right or not, breathing in the clean soapy scent of her T-shirt and wondering why she didn’t stink of sweat after tennis.

Kenzie slid her hand down my forearm. “Lissa did this,” she whispered. She ran the other hand into my hair, holding my head. “And this. And she wanted to kiss you, but I don’t know if she did or not.” Her lips were seriously close. “Did she?”

I swallowed. “No,” I said through a breath.


Basketball Practice

Kenzie

At the school gym on Monday, I wiped sweat from under my eye with the collar of my T-shirt. Jana thumped me on the back before jogging back to her place in line.

“Keep moving,” she said under her breath.

Right. I threw the basketball to Carly, who jerked when she caught it and then passed it to the next girl. Tension filled the air like when you step outside and a thunder storm is about to hit. Coach Dunbar, gray hair flattened like a steel helmet, prowled among us, her whistle at the ready. We were all freaked about the changes. You could see it in the way my usually confident teammates stumbled over their feet or missed shots or flubbed passes.

This passing drill, normally something I could do in my sleep, was making me crazy. I’d already jammed my index finger on one catch, but after a scowl from Coach, I shook my hand and kept going. No one wanted to get on her bad side, which made us so nervous that we looked like amateurs.

Sneakers squeaked on the gym floor, exclamations rang out, and the girls beside me breathed so hard I could hear it. Holy crap.When would we all settle down? Things just didn’t feel right and last Friday hadn’t been any better. Halfway through, Coach sat us down and gave us a lecture on teamwork because she said she wasn’t happy about what she saw.

Well, neither was I. I missed Coach Shultz. I missed how her happiness gave all of us a lift—even when we were working hard.

“Kenzie!” Carly shouted.

I turned and a basketball hit me in the stomach. But miracle of miracles, I caught it. Coach blew her whistle in one long shrill sound.

“All right, girls!” she called. “This is pathetic. Time for laps.”

Laps? That wasn’t how practice was supposed to go. “But we never run until—”

Jana, who I hadn’t realized was beside me, squeezed my elbow, cutting off my words. What the heck was I doing? I should know by now the woman didn’t appreciate my helpful hints.

Coach Dunbar walked toward me through the crowd of my frozen teammates, favoring her right leg. Maybe Jana had been right and there was something wrong with the woman. “Mackenzie,” she said, her voice hard. “If you have a suggestion, you can raise your hand. Otherwise, if you don’t like the way I conduct practice, you can leave. There’s nothing stopping you.”


Meeting Lissa

Kenzie

A girl with short brown curls walked toward us, a welcoming smile on her face. She looked like a woodland pixie who was cosplaying as a tennis player. She had it down perfectly—a red X-back top, a tiny white tennis skirt, and bright white sneakers that looked brand new. A light spray of freckles decorated her nose on top of her tan. Her arms and legs, though slim, were toned and muscular. She was, in a word, adorable.

I decided I hated her.

“Dylan!” she said, her eyes gleaming at him.

“Hey, Lissa, here we are,” he said stupidly. For a second it looked like he was about to hug her, but then stopped himself.

Her lips twitched, and she turned to the rest of us. “Hi, I’m Lissa.”

Dylan shook himself like he’d forgotten how to introduce people, which was so completely out of character that I frowned. Normally he was Mr. Politician, all friendly handshakes and banter. But here he seemed momentarily frozen. Was it because he really wasdating this girl?

“So guys,” he said. “This is Lissa Brooks. We were doubles tennis partners back in high school. She graduated a year before me and we reconnected at UT.”

A slow, icy sensation slid all the way to my toes. He had a past with this girl. A girl I’d never heard of before.

Dylan continued the introductions and when he was done, Lissa rubbed her hands together. “Okay. Ready to get started?”

“Sure,” Noah said, while Gabby and I nodded.

What the heck was I nodding for? I didn’t want to get started. I didn’t even want to be here. This was exactly one of the things I’d been worried about with Dylan. I knew he’d meet someone at college—someone interesting, someone prettier.

Lissa spun around and her skirt did a flirty flip. “This way.”

I switched my tote bag to my shoulder and followed behind the others. Dylan was in front walking beside Lissa who was laughing at something he said. Maybe I could just walk slower and slower until they were way ahead. Then I could say I got lost and hide out in the locker room.

Ha. Right. There was no way that would work, because even if no one else did, Gabby was sure to look for me. No. I needed to shrug this off. It didn’t matter that Dylan might be dating somebody else. That’s what I wanted for him, right? To be happy? I really didn’t have any right to be jealous.


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THE VALENTINE’S DAY WRITE TAG!

I wasn’t tagged for this, but I saw it over at Drizzle and Hurricane Books and thought it looked like a lot of fun.

I’ve mentioned it before, but if you don’t know I want to be an author. I have a handful of WIPs in varying stages. The most I’ve done is about 17k of a WIP I’ve titled “Disheartened”.


RULES

  • Thank the person who tagged you but also link back to the original post!
  • Provide a short description of your WIP/story!
  • You can check out this post to find out more about Arcadia!
  • Don’t use just one character for all answers if possible!

Short Description

Morgan is a Disheartened, his heart was taken as an infant and as a result he can’t feel emotion, and he can’t find his soulmate. At 18, he’s decided he is done with his father’s life of piracy and sets out to find his heart and his soulmate in a kingdom where magic is outlawed. He meets Kell, a magic dealer who wants revenge for his father’s death – killed by Morgan’s father, and Thea, the princess who runs away after discovering her own magic.


QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

If there is a couple in your WIP, what are their plans for Valentine’s Day?

And if there is no couple in your WIP, is there someone your main character would like to spend Valentine’s Day with?

I don’t think my main couple would be super into Valentine’s day. Well would probably be ironically into it to embarrass Morgan though.


Who has no shame about going out for dinner on Valentine’s Day alone?

I don’t think any of them would have any shame – though they’d probably make it a group thing. Thea would probably roll her eyes on Morgan and Kell a lot.


One of your characters requests a song on the radio for their crush! Which song and for which character would they pick ?

Not romantic really but

Trouble by Sleeping with Sirens would probably remind Kell of Morgan.


Is there a character who would organise an Anti-Valentine’s Day party?

Morgan after the end of the book would probing not be able to deal with Valentine’s day AT ALL and try to rebel against it. Kell and Thea would humor him but turn it into a Valentine’s party.


What romantic gesture would swoon your main character?

Honestly Morgan would try to kill someone if they tried to be all romantic.


Which character would buy a bunch of red roses and hand them out to strangers on the street, just to make their day?

Thea, 1000%.


What are your main character’s favourite Valentine’s movies?

(Note: Valentine’s movies don’t have to be romantic!)

Morgan would like:

Kell would like:

Thea would like:


Who is ready for the February 15th, just to get all the chocolate on sale?

Kell 1000%.


Is there a character who never spends Valentine’s Day alone aka always has some sort of date?

I guess Prince Klaus would fit this the best. He’s kind of smarmy, and he’s the prince that is betrothed to Thea.


Bonus:

Create a Valentine’s Day aesthetic for one or several of your characters!

So, I guess I’ll make an aesthetic for Morgan since he’s my protagonist.


Tag:

Casey @ Adopt-a-Book-AUS

B @ Icebreaker694

Raquel @ Rakiodd Books

The Orangutan Librarian

Sophie @ Blame it on Chocolate

Alex @ Lord of the Trekkies

Roses Book Nook

NaNoWriMo 2017 – #1: What I’m Writing

I’m talked about my WIP Legacy of Stardust a few times on this blog (Notably: NaNoWriMo 2016 – Writing + Life Updates). But I’m tackling a different WIP this month because for NaNo you’re meant to start with a fresh, first draft.

I actually changed which story I’d be writing for on the 3rd. I have a Word Doc FULL of novel ideas, some more fleshed out then others. The one I intended to write had a lot less planned then I thought, and I couldn’t write it (I’m a plotter at heart, not a pant-ser).

So I settled on a story where I had at least the major plot points figured out, if not the way they connect.


That story is:

Title –

Disheartened

Brief Summary –

Morgan doesn’t have a heart. The son of a notorious pirate captain and traitor, most see this as an advantage living in a world where a bleeding heart is the surest way to get yourself killed. His father traded his son’s heart, just like his own loyalty – and Morgan will get it back if he must cut it out of a man’s chest himself.

Kell is a Dealer. A trader of artifices, but when his hands are traced to a cursed locket that ended up in a visiting princess’s possession, he has to run. He never met to get mixed into killings and sorts – but a street rat doesn’t last long unless he’s useful. And Kell has always been light on his feet and swift with his hands.

Princess Thea wants just one adventure before being married off – caught in the midst of pirates and cursed objects, she gets more than she bargained for when the sister of her would be fiancé is nearly killed by a cursed necklace. Especially when it is revealed that she is one of the few alive left with inborn magic. Powerful enough to put back a heart. Powerful enough to take one out. Even her own. Hearts are a tricky business after all. Especially when one is betrothed to someone they’d never met.

Morgan has a ship. Thea has magic.  Kell has the connections to find anything, even a heart – which is as deep in the Shadow Markets one can get. But hearts are a dark magic – and all magic comes with a price.


As of November 4rd, I have 2986 words, which includes two chapters and a couple disjointed scenes. I’m a little behind, if you can tell.

But what do you think of my WIP? Do you think I’ll win Nano (haven’t for the past four years but I’m going to keep trying)? Are you doing NaNo? Let me know!

Netgalley Review: Tash Hearts Tolstoy

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I received an e-arc of this book from the publisher via netgalley and this is my honest review.

Original Release Date:

June 6th, 2017

Date I Read The Book:

May 2017

My Star Rating:

5 Stars

Official Summary:

After a shout-out from one of the Internet’s superstar vloggers, Natasha “Tash” Zelenka finds herself and her obscure, amateur web series, Unhappy Families, thrust into the limelight: She’s gone viral.

Her show is a modern adaptation of Anna Karenina—written by Tash’s literary love Count Lev Nikolayevich “Leo” Tolstoy. Tash is a fan of the forty thousand new subscribers, their gushing tweets, and flashy Tumblr GIFs. Not so much the pressure to deliver the best web series ever.

And when Unhappy Families is nominated for a Golden Tuba award, Tash’s cyber-flirtation with Thom Causer, a fellow award nominee, suddenly has the potential to become something IRL—if she can figure out how to tell said crush that she’s romantic asexual.

Tash wants to enjoy her newfound fame, but will she lose her friends in her rise to the top? What would Tolstoy do?

My Review: (Vague Spoilers)

I requested an arc of this book for several reasons:
1) a nerdy, smart, bookworm main character,
2) Classic adaptation as a blog series a la Lizzie Bennet Diaries and
3) AN ASEXUAL CHARACTER OH MY GOD.

I haven’t read much classic literature, Tolstoy included, so that didn’t grab me in more than the abstract, unlike some reviewers.

The ace representation did draw me in though. I’m ace (somewhere on the scale not quite sure where) so I was super excited to read a book with an asexual MC because I have never in my life heard of one let along read one.

Let me tell you I was not disappointed!

 To me at least, I thought the representation of asexuality was very realistic. People say stupid things about it, and it feels weird to be different, but at the end of the day, you have the same feelings as everyone else (Tash is asexual but NOT romantic which are often equated when they are NOT the same thing).

The characters are all real (occasionally flawed) people, the character growth is great and I loved it. The friendships were really realistic and I related to Tash so hard!

Plot wise, it was really interesting. YA stories featuring you tubers are particularly common now, but I thought the story of the making of their show was well done. A bit slow at times, but it balanced out.

The writing was good, quick, easy, cute YA reading.

I highly recommend this story!

Book Blitz: A School for Dragons by Amy Wolf

A School for Dragons blitz banner


A School for Dragons 
by Amy Wolf
Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: April 11th 2017
Red Empress Publishing


Summary from Goodreads:

School for Dragons Front

Mattie Sharpe—seventeen and bored in L.A. —is getting into trouble. She gets into even more when she’s whisked to Cavernis, a world teeming with dragons. But these are dragons as you’ve never seen them: they are fussy gourmets; work as lawyers & CPA’s; and attend their school ASH, where they take classes like TNS (“Tails, Nails & Scales”).

Reuniting with her childhood friend, Mattie learns why she’s been brought there, and even heads ASH’s rowing team, Skull & Bones. She learns how to be a knight from the mysterious Eli, a small mute dragon…or is he?

Add to Goodreads

Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

 


About the Author

amy wolf

Amy Wolf has published 38 short stories, including two in Realms Of Fantasy, and one in Interzone. Her memoir, Don’t Let Me Die In A Motel 6, is a humorous account of her years after the Great Recession (and is available on Kindle).

Amy started her career working for the Hollywood film studios, where she was a script writer/reader. She is currently a refugee from Los Angeles living in Seattle.

Author Links:

WebsiteGoodreadsTwitterFacebook

 


GIVEAWAY:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/f5ba7a8524/


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Book Blitz Organized by:

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Waiting on Wednesday #1 – Last Semester

new2bwow

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming book releases you’re dying for!


LastSemester


Summary:

When Johanna ‘Jo’ Gold, witty college life blogger and senior at Rutan University, decides to move in with three male strangers her last semester of school, her life unexpectedly turns upside down. While dealing with her new roommates, A.J., the pompous rich kid who feels trapped in following his father’s footsteps; Rob, the prematurely engaged former womanizer who tries to force Jo out of the house at all costs; and Drew, the 21-year-old virgin genius whose encounters with women have been more than limited, Jo learns that change isn’t always easy and it’s up to her to learn how to survive the remainder of her time at Rutan the best that she can. Along with searching for her missing mother, figuring out a clever way to pay for school tuition on her own, and dealing with the childish pranks brought on by a certain roommate, Jo’s issues seem more complicated than the average 21-year-old. Can Jo endure the dramatic perils of college while planning for life after graduation?

Paperback, 360 pages
Expected publication: April 21st 2017 by Corine Mekaouche

Okay. So, generally, I am not the biggest fan of New Adult novels – I prefer sticking to YA, and generally romance NA is immediately in my “not that into it” mental list when I hear someone raving.
But I’m hosting a book blitz for this book on release day (2 days from now!) and I’m getting serious New Girl vibes – and since I love it, I kind of want to read this.
Also, as someone anxious about college, I kind of want to read more college set novels.

So what do you think?
Do you want to read this book?
Have you heard of it?
Let me know!