This was everything I needed and more. I needed something I could get my soul sucked into: characters, emotion, steam, some outside drama, and a good world. This has it all. And I shouldn't have expected anything less from the great Neve Wilder.
Plot and Romance
Wowzer! This was a fucking ride. A rollercoaster of mishmash emotions I didn't know how to piece together 90% of the time. I emotionally died reading this book. In the best way.
This book starts off toward the end of Graves and Porter's third music tour. Things are falling apart for them, and it's heartbreaking to watch. There are flashback scenes throughout (one scene broken into a series of flashes, actually) that let you in on what went down six months prior to the start of the plot. And boy didn't things go down. This is a classic case of two people holding secret crushes for each other, but neither bringing it into the light because they don't want to ruin what they have. And they have more than just a friendship at stake; their whole careers depend on their ability to work together for months on end in close quarters. Bringing a relationship into that? Mmmmmmmm . . . Uncertain.
Eventually, they're brought together through a forced hand, and when they come together . . . Fireworks. Explosions. Some of the best sex scenes I've ever read. This is a hot-as-fuck book. Be prepared. I have forewarned you.
This book gave me Groupie vibes throughout (CM Stunich). The way it managed to be as hot as it was beautiful. It's a fine line to walk that I honestly think deserves high praise, because that shit is hard to write. Both characters are broken in their own ways, and they piece each other back together in the most amazingly emotional way possible.
I have already started book two.
Evan is the straight-talking, organised, musical theory member of the duo. He's cute, he's a little nerdy (we all know about my thing for hot nerds), and he's also a bit stuck dealing with his erratic bandmate, Les. Les is . . . a loose cannon. He's the exact opposite of Evan. He drinks too much, does too many drug-fuelled benders, and fucks anything he can (guy or girl). But he's a brilliant lyricist with real heart and talent. Evan is constantly dealing with his shit on tour: yanking strangers out of his bed, shoving him into cold showers, and trying to ignore all the sex he gets that he doesn't really understand. (Evan gives me demisexual vibes, though it's never labelled that way). But when they're back in East Tennessee in their little cabin making music, everything comes together. Les is more on-point, Evan is more chilled out. There's only one problem: they're isolated for months on end.
What could possibly go wrong?
A media scandal.
I find the back and forth and the drama absolutely divine in this book. I love me some drama. I have a regular, healthy, loving relationship/marriage in the real world (that I wouldn't change for anything), but in my book worlds, I want the fuckups, the door slams, the arguments, the angst. Gimme alllll the juice. And you really get that in this book. Alongside heartrending emotions that will crush your soul and make you bleed tears.
You get a real look into the music world in this. Well, into Neve's fictional one. No clue how much of it is real. But it's delicious. You get to see how corporate it is. How hard it is to make the art and the emotion spin to the music label's wheel. And as an author, I get that. I can spin words all day, but I need to publish to my deadlines and make all the nitty gritty work too. And it's tough balancing that. I love that you get to see that in this book. And you get even more of the music industry in book two.
As always, beautiful writing. Genuinely. These books tend to be better when the writing matches the tone. The tone is beautiful erotic with a heavy douse of emotional turmoil, so I expect beautiful words in return. And boy doesn't Neve Wilder deliver. I may or may not have a small crush on Neve Wilder (spoiler alert: I totally do). Never met her. Might combust if I do. But seriously, she writes fucking amazing words.