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Blog Tour and Giveaway: The Thrill of It: Lauren Blakely


A sexy New Adult Contemporary Romance novel that will let you see Lauren Blakely’s writing as you have never seen it before.


The Thrill of It
Lauren Blakely
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Buy: Amazon/Amazon UK/iTunes/B&N
Released November 21, 2013

A new adult story of Love. Sex. Addiction. Manipulation. Blackmail. And Power...

Some say love can be an addiction. Others say it’s the thing that makes life worth living. 

Let me tell you everything I know about love…

Love isn’t patient, love isn’t kind. Love is a game, a chase. A thrill. Love is wild and war-like, and every man and woman must fight for themselves. 

At least that’s how it was for me. 

A high-priced virgin call girl by the time I started college, I was addicted to love and to sex. 

Even though I’ve never had either. 

I controlled love, played it, and held the world in the palm of my hands. 

Then I fell down from those highs, and I’m being blackmailed for all my mistakes, forced to keep secrets from everyone, except the only guy I don’t regret.

Trey.

****

With all the other women, I knew what they were. They were temporary.

They were pills, they were bottles, they took away all the pain, and numbed the awful memories that wore away at my ragged, wasted heart.

Until I met Harley. 

She’s the only girl I ever missed when she walked away. But now she’s back in my life, every day, and there are no guarantees for us, especially since I don’t know how to tell her my secrets. What happened to my family. All I know is she’s the closest I’ve ever come to something real, and I want to feel every second of it.


The Thrill of It Pinterest Board



Excerpt: 

 She parts her lips as if she’s about to say something, then stops
herself. She looks down, breathes out hard, then takes a sip.

“What is it?” I ask softly.

“Is it because they were easy or you were so good?”

I bite my lip for a second, trying not to let her question make me all
crazy inside for her. But I am that way. Even more so because she’s
blushing now. Red is rushing to her cheeks in splotches. “You think
I’m good?”

“Yes,” she says in a breathy voice that sends a buzz through my whole
body. “But you knew that.”

I shake my head. I did know that. But I don’t know that either. I
don’t know anything with her. I don’t know what’s real and what’s a
game.

“I didn’t know that,” I say, and maybe I’m lying, but I can’t help it.
I want to hear her say it, even though this is the riskiest thing to
do in the world. To tread on this territory of us, of the almost-sex
we had. I’m already burning up, I am hot all over.

She raises her eyes, meets my gaze. “You know what I told you that
night. I mean, I don’t have anything to compare it to –“

I cut her off. “–Good.”

“But I’ve never let anyone do that to me before.”

She said that the night we were together. It made me feel electric all
over hearing it from a hot girl I wanted to have a one-night stand
with, a last fling before I went on the wagon. Hearing it now, knowing
her, understanding her, being privy to all her deep, dark secrets is
the biggest fucking turn-on of my life. I’m dying for her to touch me
right now, even though I know we won’t go there, but I want it so
badly. I want to feel her hands on me, I want her to unzip my jeans
and do something about how fucking uncomfortable I am right now with
my dick straining hard against the fly.

“Yeah?” I say in a hoarse voice because I can’t manage sentences, much
less coherent thought. I can’t move either, because if I shift an
inch, I will lunge at her, pull her under me, and fumble at all our
zippers to get our clothes off. And I can’t, can’t, can’t do that to
her. She’s a virgin, and she’s messed in the head, and if I take her
virginity because she winds me up with a few words then I am more of
an ass than those pathetic men who hired her.

“I told you that, Trey,” she says softly, and there’s something about
this moment that feels like a confessional, like she needs to tell me
these things, like she has to say them. “No one has ever made me come.
I’ve never let anyone touch me. I never wanted to be touched. I never
even knew what it would feel like to have someone do that,” she says
and licks her lips, and I am dying. Completely dying right now. My
hands are twitching, and I grip hard on the beer bottle, so hard I
could break it, but I have to hold onto something, because all I want
right now is to touch her. The whole living room is burning, the space
between us is hot and humming and full of all this hazy desire I feel,
and it’s taking over my body, my brain, my heart, and the air between
us.

If I weren’t already sitting down, I might collapse. Because this
feeling is knocking breath out of me. It is staggering.

“Harley,” I say in a low voice.

“Trey, what happened last night?
My first thoughts after reading the blurb? Sex addiction? Sounds hot. A virgin call girl? What does that even mean? A guy who uses sex to dull his pain? Hmmm, this should be interesting. 

And it was. This is not the same as other books I've read from Lauren. No, it's gritty and emotional, as one would expect from a book about two people using sex and power to cover up their emotions and feel in control of life. 

This book pulled me in from the very beginning. I'm pretty sure the prologue is one of the best I've ever read. (In fact, my first note while I was reading was "Best. Prologue. Ever.") There was a little bit of introduction to each character, in their own voice, that first glimpse at their chemistry (oh, yeah…there's some chemistry there), and both shoes dropping when they meet again. Trey's memory of their first meeting melted me. Especially as he hadn't noticed she was in the room while he was remembering. I could picture her watching him as he walked in, and from that moment on, I was cheering for both of them to work through their problems and make a life together. 

From the beginning, Harley seemed like the strongest broken person I've ever read. She had so many things going on in her life, and she faced each aspect with her endgame in mind: getting clear of her past. But watching as each new obstacle forced her to decide between the easy route of going back to what she knew or forging ahead into something new, it became obvious that though Harley was broken, she was also a fighter. Many of her challenges, especially before the book begins and in the beginning chapters, she shouldered on her own without leaning on the people around her. There were points in the story where the pull between her past and the person she was trying to become was a tangible thing, and just watching her struggle with her choices was heartbreaking. 

Trey comes off from the beginning as a "good guy" with issues. He's full of ink, works in a tattoo parlor, and goes to the same meetings as Harley, but even from the beginning it was clear that his demons were not driving him so much as he was running from them. His struggle with his secrets just kept breaking my heart.

I didn't read this as fast as I often read books, but it didn't feel slow. It was a constant struggle between wanting to read faster to find out how everything would be resolved, and wanting to slow down and really savor the story. I was continually questioning the motives of other characters, trying to figure out what Harley and Trey were hiding (from each other and from others), and hoping for that happily ever after. This was not one of those books where I just sat back and read. There was definitely a pull to learn more about these characters. 

This book does end on a cliffhanger, but not the kind that makes me want to throw my book at the wall. No, this cliffhanger hints at the direction and challenges the characters will face in the next book, while still wrapping up this chapter of their lives. It left me wishing I could read Every Second with You right now, but willing to wait patiently (more or less). 

Thanks to Lauren Blakely for providing an ARC copy of The Thrill of It in return for my honest review. 






Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, 
heart, and humor, and her books have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks bestseller lists. Like the heroine in 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 novels include Caught Up In Us, Pretending He's Mine, Playing With Her Heart, Trophy Husband, and Far Too Tempting. On November 21, she'll release the edgy new adult novel THE THRILL OF IT. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney.

Giveaway

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Lauren is providing an extra giveaway for our blog of an heart shaped necklace inspired by the title work on the book.

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