Sunday, 21 February 2016

Sticks (Black Addiction #2) by T Gephart - ARC Review


Kenzie Clark had made plenty of mistakes. Who cared? Life was all about the journey, and if you couldn’t enjoy the ride then what was the point. The tough-talking guitarist from Brooklyn, NY worked hard so she could play even harder. But some mistakes weren’t so easy to walk away from. Joey Shaw, drummer for Black Addiction, was exactly that kind of a mistake.

How could one night of fun turn into a life long commitment? That’s exactly what Joey was asking himself when Kenzie showed up a few weeks later—the soon-to-be baby bump with his name written all over it. He could barely tie his shoes; how in the hell was he going to raise a kid?

With neither of them ready to become parents, it was always going to be a difficult, but there was no way either of them were walking away. Come hell or high water, they were having this baby—together.

Hopefully they would both be still standing by the birth.

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Kristine's Review:
Reviewed: February 2016.

I'm a huge fan of T Gephart's work, her Power Station series got me hooked for more fun, sexy, romps through the lives of rock stars, there's something super exciting about living vicariously through a rocker's life, there's more to life than just guitars and girls, the stage and sexy times....okay there's that too, but behind the sexy scenes and the stage is witty banter, snappy one liners, characters who you wished were friends, even with the continuation of the Black Addiction series, there's a thread running through from the original Lexi series that has a sense of coming home, of revisiting old friends and meeting new ones.

Joey Shaw has long been the larrikin of the group, the man with the sticks who keeps the beat on stage and keeps beds warm off, very rarely serious, Joey is the man you contact when you want a fun night out, not who you contact when your would is tilted on it's axis. Joey might seem like a party guy, but the more you see of him, the more there is than meets the eye.

"Like if I was going to accidentally get someone pregnant, I'm glad it was you."

Kenzie Clark has led a pretty interesting life, as guitarist for her Beauty Queens from Mars she knows the in and outs of the struggling music scene, always one show away from hitting the big time, she's found what she loves in music, and has her sights set on following that dream until it becomes a reality, amassing a following and having steady gigs to bring in cash flow, things seem to be running smoothly. Until two little lines appear on a pregnancy test, that one night weeks ago with friend and fellow rocker Shaw has just come back to bite her in the arse, screaming fans are about to be swapped for a screaming baby.

"Well then, put your money where your mouth is. A little healthy competition should make it interesting."
There was so much that was fun here, Joey and Kenzie's connection was clear from the beginning, part friendship, part professional admiration, everything from their early interactions felt real, I understood implicitly how these two fell into bed, and how they could continue on with their lives afterwards, but what I truly loved was the commitment from them to stick whatever this was out for the long haul, their automatic and unwavering decision that raise their child together, so often we see denials or the blame game play out in unexpected pregnancies in books, but I adored Joey's automatic decision to step up to the plate, it was instantly endearing and hinted to there being so much more to Joey that I had previously expected.

 I loved that Kenzie's pregnancy felt factual, that everything wasn't sunshine and rainbows, there was more to her character than the obligatory glowing mumma statements. I loved that the banter between these two never slowed, the chemistry always simmering below the surface, ready to ignite, I loved that I felt all of her indecision, all of her moments of confusion, all of her joy, Kenzie with her kicking arse and taking names attitude was tested by mood swings, hormones, a growing body and her growing attraction to the father of her child, I loved hearing her voice throughout as she figured out everything, sorted out her feelings about her baby, about Joey, about her work, her passion, her life, she had that fierceness that demanded your attention, that demanded you cheer for her.

"It's not the sex I wanted, it was you."

Sticks was a fun, light, sexy romp, filled with humour and heart, I couldn't put it down, while there's a level of make believe here dealing with famous rockers, nothing ever felt overdone or unrealistic, Gephart has me swooning at Joey's sweet words and gestures, the barter between he and Kenzie had me giggling and smiling like a goon, and the fast paced ride ensured I devoured very word, with enough drama and angst to keep me glued to the pages, Sticks was the perfect way to spend my night with old friends and new acquaintances, imagining the world Gephart created and wishing desperately to be part of it.

About T Gephart:

T Gephart is an indie author from Melbourne, Australia.

T's approach to life has been somewhat unconventional. Rather than going to University, she jumped on a plane to Los Angeles, USA in search of adventure. While this first trip left her somewhat underwhelmed and largely depleted of funds it fueled her appetite for travel and life experience.

With a rather eclectic resume, which reads more like the fiction she writes than an actual employment history, T struggled to find her niche in the world.

While on a subsequent trip the United States in 1999, T met and married her husband. Their whirlwind courtship and interesting impromptu convenience store wedding set the tone for their life together, which is anything but ordinary. They have lived in Louisiana, Guam and Australia and have travelled extensively throughout the US. T has two beautiful young children and one four legged child, Woodley the wonder dog.

An avid reader, T became increasingly frustrated by the lack of strong female characters in the books she was reading. She wanted to read about a woman she could identify with, someone strong, independent and confident who didn't lack femininity. Out of this need, she decided to pen her first book, A Twist of Fate. She enjoyed the process so much that when it was over she couldn't let it go.

T loves to travel, laugh and surround herself with colourful characters. This inevitably spills into her writing and makes for an interesting journey - she is well and truly enjoying the ride!

Based on her life experiences, T has plenty of material for her books and has a wealth of ideas to keep you all enthralled.
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