Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Michelle Mankin's Irresistible Refrain. My stop includes all you need to know about this fabulous book ;), my review, an excerpt, and a giveaway!
Irresistible Refrain - Tempest Series (Book #1)
Author: Michelle Mankin
Release date: October 3, 2013
Genre: New Adult
Two years ago everything changed for the remaining members of the Seattle rock band Tempest.
Two years is a long time.
Too long to keep on remembering.
Not nearly long enough to forget.
In trouble with nowhere else to go songstress Lace Lowell seeks refuge with the band during their stop in New York City. It's a risky move for her because they are both there, two impossibly good looking men whose lives are inseparably entwined with hers. One who bruised her heart and one who smashed it into pieces.
Warren “War” Jinkins, the mercurial lead singer of Tempest, has always had a thing for Lace. But then again so does his best friend and band mate.
Bryan “Bullet” Jackson, the sinfully handsome tat-sleeved lead guitarist, has a bad boy reputation befitting his nickname. For the past two years Bullet’s had a rule with the groupies: one time, never twice, leave ‘em satisfied, but always leave ‘em.
Two guys, one woman, and a host of dark secrets all together within the tight confines of a tour bus as the group travels cross country.
Can the past be forgotten and buried?
Will friendships prevail?
Or will the three of them succumb to seductive impulses too addictive to resist?
** Irresistible Refrain is a gritty rock and roll tale intended for mature readers seventeen and up. Contains sexual situations, strong language, and drug use. **
I seriously contemplated telling her right then and there that she was the only woman that had ever been important to me when I heard the door slide open behind us.
“Guys it’s four fucking a.m.” Voice gruff with disapproval, War’s appearance brought our intimate predawn reunion to an end. Looking wan and strung out, the lead singer of Tempest shuffled into view wearing a pair of red boxers and scratched his bare chest. “Come on back to bed, babe.” He held out his hand to her while shooting me an irritated glance.
She patted my knee and I took the cue to scoot out of the booth ahead of her so she could exit.
War threw a proprietary arm around her shoulders as soon as her bare feet hit the floor. “Night, Loser.”
War gave me the finger before he closed the door.
I stared at it for a long time. Nothing had fucking changed. Twenty thousand people screaming my name during my guitar solo at the Garden, plus two twins, but none of that mattered to me.
Not when my best friend had the woman I’d always wanted.
Holy WOW! Michelle Mankin has delivered an irresistible read with Irresistible Refrain! It's no-holds barred about drug use/addiction and all its negative effects. But it also offers hope for second chances for love and redemption.
Bryan 'Bullet' Jackson has the world on a string. As the bad boy fantasy of many women, this hunky, tatted up lead guitarist for Tempest can have any woman. And he's had many. But there's only one he's ever really wanted to keep. The one that fits him like the final piece of a puzzle. However, a promise he made as a teenager keeps them apart.
Lace Lowell has lived a very un-charmed life. As the daughter of a drug addict, it has taken a lot of determination just to survive. She always had Bryan, though, for support. Until he broke her heart. And the loss of what she'd always dreamed of having sent Lace on a dangerous downward spiral.
Warren 'War' Jinkins has been Bryan's best friend forever. War has always had Bryan's back, protecting him, even taking the rap for him and suffering the consequences. So he knew when he asked for a promise from Bryan, he'd get it. Bryan owed him. Now the lead singer of their band, these two are tight as ever. Until Lace shows up, ratcheting up the tension.
Irresistible Refrain has an amazingly strong, courageous, and resilient heroine in Lace. She's made more than her fair share of mistakes. But she hits rock bottom and begins her ascent out of hell. She's tried her damnedest to move on from Bryan but can't seem to shake him. However, she has to finally prove to everyone, especially herself, that she can stand on her own two feet before she can have the future she's always dreamed of having. I admire Lace so much. It is awe-inspiring watching her get her life back together - and doing it for herself. I loved seeing her transformation from broken little girl, to self-confident teen, to broken woman, to incredibly capable woman.
Bryan *swoon* is incredible, too. He's a kind, loving and loyal man. We get to see that in how he cares about War, his family, and especially Lace. Lace is his weakness. He never gives up - well, not completely - on having his own dreams come true. It was shocking and swoon-inducing seeing him make the decision to go after what he wanted. He's made mistakes as well, make some on this mission of his. I was so impressed when he came to the realization that he'd made another misstep though. He matured and elevated another rung in my esteem as he made moves to rectify the situation. Bryan evolved from being blindly loyal, giving up things he wanted in a misguided attempt to pay back a debt, to mature and lovingly loyal.
War - I'm sorry y'all. I'm sure he has some redeeming qualities...somewhere. And I really hope to see them revealed. But all I kept thinking about him was 'he's such an asshole!' He makes decisions and takes actions under the guise of friendship, but his motivation really came into question for me. Perhaps he does just have Lead Singer Disease, as Dizzy said. But he's just a narcissistic asshole most of the time. I didn't really see any character growth for him, but I hope to see some in future installments.
Irresistible Refrain is beautifully rendered and well paced. I delighted in the flashbacks that established the foundation of friendship and love between Bryan, War, Lacy, and Dizzy (Lace's older brother and rhythm guitarist for Tempest). I loved, loved seeing the character growth of both Bryan and Lace...but particularly Lace. She had a long way to climb to reclaim her life, and the resilience and strength she showed was amazing. It was a joy to see the hope offered - hope for second chances at life and love. And the hope for redemption for mistakes made and for the hurt caused by drug use. Ms. Mankin delivers a gritty, realistic story here. But a story with hope.
**This is a spinoff of Ms. Mankin's Black Cat Records series but it can be read as standalone.
**I received an eARC of the book, as part of the blog tour, in exchange for my honest review.
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Michelle Mankin is a young/new adult romance writer as well as a self-proclaimed giant…inside her own mind.
For many years, she toiled in the insurance industry as an underwriter. Somehow, the boredom didn’t kill her, and the hours of looking at facts and figures provided ample time for her mind to wander.
Love Evolution, Love Revolution, and the latest novel, Love Resolution are rock ‘n roll romances. The first is based on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, the second on Much Ado About
Nothing, and the third on The Tempest. The first three books in the Black Cat Records series combine the plot underpinnings of the famous playwright with the drama, excitement, and the
indisputable sexiness of the rock ‘n roll industry.
When she is not putting her daydreams down on paper, you can find Michelle traveling the world with her family. Sometimes for real and sometimes just for pretend as she takes the children to
school and back.