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Blog Tour and Giveaway: Music of the Heart: Katie Ashley



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For Abby Renard, the plan was supposed to be simple—join her brothers’ band on the last leg of their summer tour and decide if she’s finally ready for the limelight by becoming its fourth member. Of course, she never imagined stumbling onto the wrong tour bus at Rock Nation would accidentally land her in the bed of Jake Slater, the notorious womanizing lead singer of Runaway Train. When he mistakes her for one of his groupie’s, Abby quickly lets him know she sure as hell isn't in his bed on purpose.


Jake Slater never imagined the angel who fell into his bed would resist his charms by promptly kneeing him in the balls. Of course, the fact she seems like a prissy choir girl makes her anything but his type. So he is more than surprised when after betting Abby she wouldn’t last a week on their tour bus, she is more than willing to prove him wrong. But as Jake’s personal life begins to implode around him, he finds an unlikely ally in Abby. He’s never met a woman he can talk to, joke with, or most importantly make music with.

As the week starts comes to a close, neither Abby nor Jake is ready to let go. Can a sweetheart Country songstress and a bad boy of Rock N Roll actually have a future together?


So I knew I was probably going to like this book because 1. It is written by one of my fave authors Katie Ashley and 2. Rock Stars. Do you really need more than that? Well, she provided so much more. This book is such a fantastic read. It has everything: It is funny, emotional, romantic, heartbreaking, angsty, and uplifting. I felt every emotion. I cried numerous times, sometimes because I was happy, sometimes I was a little sad, and one time I even did the big ugly cry.

Music of the Heart is the story of a 21 year old singer on her way to meet her 3 brothers on tour with their Christian rock band, when she inadvertently gets on the wrong bus and ends up with the tattooed, pierced, rock band Runaway Train.

Abby is smart, spunky, sarcastic, and very strong. She grew up all over the world in a very upbringing with 3 protective older brothers. She has a big heart and is a caring, nurturing person.


Jake is...sigh...swoon...so hot! He is the lead singer of the band. He is sarcastic, egotistical, arrogant, and has a bad rep and a string of women. He doesn't do relationships or open up to women. But he is a Mama's boy and would do anything for her.

Abby and Jake spark off each other immediately and are both sarcastic and stubborn. Before they know it, they are making a bet that she cannot make it on the tour bus for a week. Challenge accepted! I loved seeing them play off each other. She pushes Jake and he pushes her right back. Together they are fun, flirty, and hilarious. Jake has been broken in the past and he is having a rough time dealing with some situations in his present. He is terrified at the thought of letting his guard down, but Abby keeps breaking down his walls brick by brick. And she is such a caring person that she is there when Jake really needs her. Even if he does not want to need anyone.

"I just meant that you're a musician's dream girl--a complete and total package. You understand what it's like to deal with the industry and what a gift and a curse the Muse can be. Plus you know all about music and singing. To top it all off you're someone a guy could just hang out with and watch stupid comedies. Do you know what it's like to have a beautiful girl in front of you that totally gets you?"

"You blow so hot and cold with me that I'm not sure which way is up. It's a wonder I don't need a chiropractor from your emotional whiplash....You're really good at charming the panties off girls at ten paces, but you can't even tell a girl how you really feel when she is up close and personal."

But Jake is no angel and does not always make the best decisions. I wanted throttle him multiple times for being an ignorant ass and doing some pretty crappy things. But sweet Abby has such a generous heart and a forgiving nature. And Jake is not stupid, he sees how great Abby is. But that is a problem in itself because he feels unworthy. Abby is one of my favorite female characters I have read in awhile. She is young, but knows what is really important and is not afraid to face challenges and go after what she wants. She has the perfect balance of having strength but also being forgiving.

"But don't you see, I've never met a girl who really cared about me and not because I'm Jake Slater from Runaway Train."
"Then that's sad because in spite of some of your faults, you really are worth knowing and caring about."

Their time together is intense and as they get closer they face more challenges. There were many things that stood in their way and made a relationship difficult. But through it all, I totally loved this couple. They balanced each other out in a good way. As Jake, opened up you could see his vulnerable, insecure side and it just made you want to hug him(at least when you were not wanting to whack him for doing something stupid). And despite Abby's inexperience, they had serious chemistry together and she was not always so pure and innocent. 

“And I swear to God that I do love you—I’ve never loved any girl like I have loved you. You are the most amazing thing that’s ever happened to me in my life. It’s just…I don’t know what to do with all this...I barely know how to be with someone when I’m whole. How the hell am I supposed to be with you when I’m so fucking broken?”

"...I may be fifty percent angel, but I'm fifty percent hellcat too...I'll be your holy water--I'll purify you and wash away the past..."

The secondary characters were also very well developed and I cannot wait to see more of some of them in future books. AJ and Rhys from the band need to find good women for themselves. They were so much a part of the story of the bus and provided a lot of comic entertainment. I would like to get to know more about her brothers too especially the twins Gabe and Eli. And the married band member Brayden and his wife Lily were so sweet and supportive of Jake and Abby and I really liked them. Jake's mother was a beautiful character. I loved her relationship and support of Jake. Their bond was very tender and heartfelt.

This book made me laugh, made me swoon, and made me cry both happy and sad tears. I felt like I had been on a ride that had it's ups and downs. But I thoroughly enjoyed it. 

Thanks to Katie Ashley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review


Another fabulous story by Miss Katie Ashley!  Katie you have stolen my heart with your writing style and your characters!

I don't think Katie or Jake for that matter (since this quote is from the conversation he was having with his mom)could have used a better description to describe Abby. I fricken LOVED her as a heroine! She was young, but our girl had sass and backbone. She did not take Jake's crap (which by the way made her a better person than me because there were sometimes I wanted to slap that man). Abby was strong and passionate. She was amazing when it came to Jake and being there emotionally for him when he most needed it, even if he just got done being an ass. Abby was secure in herself and her beliefs, and this shaped her relationship with the people in her life.

"She sounds lovely." 
"Yeah, I'm sure to you she does. To  me it's a freakin' nightmare-an alleged virgin who isn't going to let me in her pants without the Jaws of Lie. She's not intimidated by me at all. Not to mention she has drive and ambition not just in the music world, but with nursing. And to top it all off, she comes from an insanely religious background."

Jake, well Jake has made my permanent list of book boyfriends (he had all the makings of a perfect bad boy...pierced, tatted, arrogant,oh and lets not forget, rocker who had a heart of gold that he played hide and seek with). I adored his character. Oh boy, he had me laughing, swearing, and swooning. I wasn't sure what emotion I would be feeling with each page I turned. He definitely kept you on your toes with his multiple personalities and behaviors. I loved this about him though. Jake was full of surprises with his bad boy tendencies mixed with glimpses of a soulful vulnerable man. I never knew if we were getting arrogant horny Jake, or the insecure Jake who was buried under his rough exterior; the Jake who broke down in tears when the pain become too much to handle.  
  
"Yes, Daddy. I really like Jake Slater from Runaway Train. Yes, I've only known him a week. Yes, he's a bad boy with tattoos and piercings, and yes, he's your worst nightmare when it comes to the guy dating your little girl."


Jake and Abby were such a fun couple with their witty banter. I think they were perfect for each other. They were both beyond stubborn, and loved to challenge each other at every turn. I enjoyed their antics, and the way they grew as a couple. 
 
"You can hold tight to me. I won't let you fall, Angel."
"And I won't let you either. We'll ride this storm together, Jake. Forever and always."
"And you'll always be my sweet angel-my saving grace and love of my life."

I absolutely and completely adored this mismatched crew of characters that Katie grew as a family and their story. I seriously hope that she continues with other books in this series. I really really want Rhys story, even though he was kinda quiet in the story I was intrigued by him. 

Thanks to Katie Ashley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review


Excerpt # 1

Jake then turned and brought my guitar case to me. “Now please regale us all with your vocal stylings.”

“I’d be happy to.” I leaned over and popped open the locks on my case. When I pulled out my guitar, Jake stared at it in surprise. “What’s wrong with it?”

“Nothing. It’s just I expected—”

“I’ll have you know this is a Gibson Hummingbird that cost three grand! I worked my ass off to pay for it!”

He grinned. “Angel, it’s a helluva guitar. And what I was about to say before you interrupted me was I just expected it to be all glittery like Taylor Swift’s.”

Plucking out my pick, I waved it at him and winked. He eyed the shimmering purple before throwing his head back and laughing heartily. “Oh Angel, I’m so glad to see that. You don’t disappoint.”

Once I adjusted the guitar on my lap, I cocked my head at the guys. “Hmm, so what do you want me to play?”

“Give us what you did for the record execs. You obviously wowed them if they were going to let an unknown headline a tour,” Rhys suggested.

I nodded. “Okay, I played a guitar, rather than piano, version of Adele’s Someone Like You.

Jake’s brows shot up in surprise. “Adele?”

From his tone, I could tell he thought there was no way in hell I had a voice that would come anywhere near hers. I pursed my lips. “Yeah, Adele,” I countered.

He crossed his arms over his chest and continued giving me a skeptical look. “All right then. Wow us, Angel.”

I rolled my eyes before clearing my throat and strumming a few warm-up chords. Then I started the opening melody of the song. “I heard that you're settled down…” I wanted to impress the guys, but I really wanted to knock it out of the park to put Jake’s smirking ass in his place. So I did the only thing I knew how to do when it came to performing—I tuned them out. It was about me, the guitar, the music, and the melody. As my voice echoed through the close quarters of the cabin, I closed my eyes, living and breathing the lyrics. I poured my soul into reaching the high and low notes while my fingers picked the familiar chords.  

When I finished the chorus, my eyes popped open, and I stopped singing. I continue strumming the chords as I gazed around at the guys. I couldn’t help but laugh at their expressions. “So?” I prompted.

AJ grinned. “Tu cantas como un angel.”

I snorted. “I sing like an angel, huh? I guess that’s a good description since you guys keep calling me that.”

When I glanced at Rhys, he was shaking his head. “Damn, girl, no wonder you blew the execs away. You’re like a mini-Adele.”

Warmth flooded my cheeks. “Really?”

“Hell yeah! Tinier and prettier though.” Rhys thumped my back heartily like he would one of the guys. A little too hard because it caused me to yelp. His eyes widened. “Oh, I’m sorry. I forgot you’re so dainty.”

I laughed. “I’m not that fragile, but I’m not one of you guys either.”

Next I looked to Brayden who wore an expression of genuine admiration. “That was absolutely amazing. Not only do you have a powerhouse voice, but the emotion you put into it…” He closed his eyes for a moment. “Just inspiring.”

Unable to keep a beaming smile off my face, I gushed, “Aw, thank you.”

Finally, I dared myself to look at Jake. He was leaned back against the kitchen counter, arms crossed over his chest.  “So?” I finally asked.

His signature smirk curved on his lips. “After those glowing reviews, you really give a shit about what I have to say?”

 “Of course I do. After all, you’re the lead singer of Runaway Train.”

“Uh, Bray and I sing too,” AJ countered.

I laughed. “Whatever.”

Jake rubbed his hand along his chin. “Ever had voice lessons?”

My brows furrowed. “When my brothers made it on to the scene, my parents let me have some training. Before then, we really couldn’t afford it. Occasionally, some people from the ministry would work with us.”

He bobbed his head. “Just as I expected.”

“What?”

“True God-given talent,” he replied, with a wink.

His response stunned me, and I just sat there, guitar still on my lap, staring at him. He pushed himself away from the counter and came over to me. “There are people who can spend thousands of dollars on voice lessons and never, ever exude one tiny ounce of the talent you just did on a stinky bus rolling down the interstate.”

“Thank you,” I squeaked.

“I think you could give Adele a run for her money any day.”

A nervous laugh escaped my lips. “Uh, well, I don’t know about that.”

Jake squatted down in front of me, and I tried ignoring how my body hummed in response to his closeness. I had never, ever experienced anything like it before in my life. It was like every molecule in my body came alive, and the closer he was to me the more I tingled. Whoa. How could I possibly be having a reaction to him? He was an egomaniac jerk! 

His gaze went to my guitar. “So you play some ballads. Can you do anything else?”

Pursing my lips at his challenge, I started strumming the opening to AC/DC’s Highway to Hell. Jake instantly busted out laughing. “Damn, Angel, just when I start to underestimate you, you go and prove me wrong.”

Still playing, I teased, “And here I underestimated that you could ever admit when you were wrong about something.”

“I normally don’t. But I have a feeling I’m going to make an exception for you in a lot of areas.” At his wicked grin, I knew exactly what he was meant.

“Dream on,” I muttered.

“Fantasizing is healthy, you know. Maybe you should try it more.”

Closing my eyes, I kept playing Highway to Hell. I licked my lips. “Hmm, yeah, you’re right. Fantasizing is nice.”

“Whatcha thinkin’ about, Angel?” Jake asked, his breath hovering close to my cheek. “Or should I say who ya thinkin’ about?”

“You,” I whispered. My eyes popped open to take in his surprised expression.

“Seriously?”

“Mmm-hmm,” I replied a little breathlessly for emphasis. He cocked his eyebrows expectantly. “I’m fantasizing about what it would be like to nail you in the balls again for being such an egotistical jerkwad!”

Laughter echoed around me from the other guys while Jake only shook his head. With a smirk, he replied, “Admit it though. You were still thinking about my balls.”


Katie Ashley is the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon Best-Selling author of The Proposition. She lives outside of Atlanta, Georgia with her two very spoiled dogs and one outnumbered cat. She has a slight obsession with Pinterest, The Golden Girls, Harry Potter, Shakespeare, Supernatural, Designing Women, and Scooby-Doo.

She spent 11 1/2 years educating the Youth of America aka teaching MS and HS English until she left to write full time in December 2012.

She also writes Young Adult fiction under the name Krista Ashe.

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