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Blog Tour: Vacant: Evelyn R. Baldwin



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Released: February 23, 2013

Ethan Parker gets up every day, surviving the only way he knows how—alone. Orphaned as a child and forced into the child welfare system, he knows better than to depend on anyone but himself. He’s learned trust is a word used all too often, but rarely earned. Ethan believes that his best chance for maintaining a simple and solitary existence is to live by a simple mantra: Don’t get involved. Keep things simple. Take care of yourself! When a young woman moves in next door, Ethan is forced to reevaluate his beliefs. He tries to keep his distance, but his new neighbor’s infectious smile and outlook on life leave him struggling with the decision of living the life he knows, or taking a chance on the unexpected. As Ethan develops a relationship with his new neighbor, Emily, he realizes nothing is simple and learns that life is about more than just surviving... it’s about living.
**This version contains sexual content only suitable for adult audiences.

Also available in YA Ebook and paperback
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Kim's rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

This is a very short novella, but it has an interesting story line. Ethan is a loner. He never really had anyone to rely on and was a product of the system. He is responsible, independent, but completely closed off. He is 21 years old, has a job, lives alone and does not have any real relationships or friendships. 

Then one day a knock at his door, changes everything. Against his better judgment, he is drawn into the life of the teen that lives next door. Emily is sweet, unassuming, and friendly. Ethan starts to realize that things with Emily are not what they seem and he sees an opportunity to make a difference in her life. 


They soon become entwined in each other's lives and Ethan becomes a protector to her. He is older and supports Emily in order for her to be able to make good choices. He is a caring young man and I enjoyed seeing him open up and begin to share his life. They were two lost and forgotten people, but together they found what they needed. 

Their relationship was very sweet and positive. Eventually once she is old enough, they cannot deny their feelings anymore. There was some drama and angst, but not too much.

Since the novelette spans 15 years, it is more of a framework of their relationship than an intense read. They had chemistry, emotion, and a connection, but we saw more glimpses of it over a period of time vs. a consecutive series of events. I really think it could have been an amazing full length book because the characters were likable, deep, and emotional. This is labeled the erotic version, but it is more PG-13.

It is a sweet story of paying it forward, finding someone to share your life with and realizing the importance of having a support system.It shows the power of love and that one person can make a huge difference in the lives of others. 

Thanks to Evelyn R. Baldwin for providing me a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
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Excerpt:

As my arm swings with the rhythm of my feet, I brush Emily's fingers with my own. It’s an innocent accident, though the sudden warmth in my chest is anything but. I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be able to keep up this ruse, playing her brotherly protector. While Emily has never spoken about boys in her class or voiced interests of the romantic sort, I know it’s inevitable. She has blossomed into a beautiful creature who has no idea of the devastation her beauty wreaks upon me and, surely, the boys around her. Her smile is infectious, and it’s only a matter of time before a suitor comes knocking at our door. I kind of feel sorry for the poor boy, as my first time meeting him will most likely be ugly. I’m a fierce guardian where Emily is concerned, not just because it’s my duty to protect her but because seeing Emily with another guy will end me.

I want to reach out and take her hand in mine as we walk, but I don’t. I have calculated the difference in our ages. Five years doesn’t seem all that much when she is twenty and I’m twenty-five. However, she is seventeen and still a minor, which is the only important difference, no matter how hard my libido begs to differ. I have to prepare for her to have romantic feelings for someone her own age, not a twenty-two year-old guy who has to act like her older brother.

Sisters rarely hold hands with their brothers.

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Evelyn. R. Baldwin Website / Twitter / Goodreads

Evelyn R. Baldwin was born in the Midwest and spent her childhood on a horse ranch. As an only child, Evelyn was often forced to entertain herself with the family's horses as companions, and her imagination the only limitation.

After moving to St. Louis to attend college, she earned a degree in Education. During her Master’s program, Evelyn discovered her fascination with behavior and psychology.

Her first professional job experience was as a juvenile counselor, which led her to venture into other human sciences, eventually making a career with Behavior Analysis. While writing is a hobby for Evelyn, she often uses her experiences with human behavior to guide her characters.

She’s written short stories since childhood but only recently began exercising her real writing muscles. While she does not consider herself a professional writer in any sense of the word, she continues to polish her craft and hopes for success in her writing ventures, even if they are just as a hobby.

After Twilight was done and I’d read them all 2-3 times, I wanted more and googled “twilight addiction.” It led me to someone’s blog who then spoke about twi fanfic. I started reading all the stories and said, “Hey, I can do this!”




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