Thursday, May 28, 2015

Blitz and Review: 21 Stolen Kisses by Lauren

Today I'm participating in a Release Week Blitz for Lauren Blakely's 21 Stolen Kisses. This is a very unusual book, one that I think you'll either love or hate. It's being billed as a "New Adult Forbidden Romance" - are you intrigued by that?

Check out the rest of the post to find out which side of that I fall on, to check out an excerpt, get information about the Facebook party happening *right now,* and get in on a giveaway!

The Book

When I first met him I resisted. 
Like any forbidden love, I told myself he was a crush, and it would pass.
That was a lie. It never faded.

And I never expected he would fall for me just as hard. 

There were so many reasons that should have kept us apart, least of all, the decade that separated us.
Growing up in New York City, I learned early on that love is a double-edged sword.
Love broke up my parents, love took away my friends, and love -- the big, intense, never-been-like-this-before love -- landed me in therapy.
Now I'm heading to college, and it's time to give love a clean slate again. But, can I really start over when he's still in my life?
Because the one man I've always wanted, is also the only guy I absolutely can't have…
And he wants me just as fiercely.

Can I settle for anything less than the love of my life?

21 Stolen Kisses is available now!


He inhales sharply. The look in his eyes says we’re crossing into the danger zone again. It’s the only place I want to be with him. Because when we’re there, nothing between us feels dangerous. Everything feels right.
“I turn eighteen in a few more weeks,” I say, like my birthday is an open invitation for us to slam back into each other.
He nods. “I know.”
A breeze blow by and rustles his hair. A lock falls out of place. Instinct takes over. I raise my hand to reach for his hair.
But he’s faster. He grasps my wrist, and the second he does, the moment expands. It stretches and unfolds into the thing I will replay tonight and tomorrow and the next day. I stare at his hand clasped around my wrist, flashing back to all the times he held my hand, touched my wrist, and ran his fingers along my arm. I shiver as the memories collide, the past slamming into the present.
I look up from our hands to his eyes. Blazing, full of heat. Full of all that restraint from him that I know so well.

My Review

As I said in the teaser for this post, 21 Stolen Kisses is, I think, a very divisive book. You'll either love it, or you'll hate it, and I don't think many people will fall in the middle about this one. Kudos to Lauren Blakely for not shying away from a really controversial, challenging set-up for a New Adult romance novel.

The set-up for 21 Stolen Kisses is that Kennedy, nearly eighteen, is in love with her mother's agent, Noah, who is twenty-five. 

I suspect the controversy here is obvious.

The book is certainly conscious of it, and Kennedy and Noah both address the age difference - and particularly Kennedy's age - in different ways. I appreciated that this was tackled, and even agonized over. 

But more importantly, the age issue was only one component of a bigger story about love, family, and friendship. I loved that 21 Stolen Kisses asks the reader to understand love and affection on a broader spectrum than right, wrong, lust, love at first sight, and so on. There's a sense of loving in spite of, or regardless of various circumstances and conditions. And I think that's very true to life, particularly when it comes to family.

Kennedy walks a difficult line between too mature and still a teenager. It would make the book more comfortable if she always behaved mature beyond her years, so I appreciated that she sometimes acts her age. I think she does mature through the story of the book, and her emotional journey would have had me hooked even without the romantic elements.

I also really liked the way that the past and present - and the letter Kennedy wrote that inspires the book's title - are woven together. I think that it's a very difficult thing to do well, but it felt absolutely necessary here, to create a balance between romance and regret, hope and pain, and so forth.

Also? There were tears. So many tears - sad and happy. This is an excellent, excellent book, guys.

Truly, I think 21 Stolen Kisses could make for an excellent book club selection, if your book club is a little adventurous.

Bottom line:

I loved 21 Stolen Kisses. It is not an easy book, but I think it's a beautiful, emotional, honest story and I look forward to re-reading it already. This, to me, is something that great New Adult handles well - exploring characters as they come into a more adult maturity and a more emotionally complex understanding of their world.

5 stars
For fans of New Adult, book club books

About the Author

Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, heart, and humor, and she has had seven books on the New York Times Bestseller list and eleven on the USA Today Bestseller list. Like the heroine in her novel, FAR TOO TEMPTING, she thinks life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that love songs promise. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. She loves hearing from readers! Her bestselling series include Caught Up in Love, Seductive Nights, No Regrets and Fighting Fire. She recently released Forbidden Nights, a standalone novel in her New York Times Bestselling Seductive Nights series that became an instant New York Times Bestseller. This summer she'll release Consumed by You, her next title in her NYT Bestselling Fighting Fire series about sexy firemen and the women they love, and Sweet Sinful Nights, the first book in her new series Sinful Nights. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, text BLAKELY + your email address to 678-249-3375(please use the actual + sign).


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blitz organized by:

No comments:

Post a Comment