Blog Tour and Giveaway: Love and Lists: Tara Sivec

Love and Lists (Chocoholics#1)
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Spin off of Chocolate Lovers series
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Love and Lists is the first book in the Chocolate Lovers spinoff - Chocoholics: The foul-mouthed offspring tell their stories.

Twenty-five-year-old Gavin Ellis has always had the love and support of his family ever since he was a little boy and couldn't stop talking about his penis. He's also always had their unsolicited advice and uncanny knack of embarrassing him at all costs. Now that he's an adult and trying to convince the love of his life to love him back, things haven't changed very much from when he was younger. 

When Gavin's best friend Tyler suggests he make a to-do list of items that will ensure he wins the girl, Gavin is one-hundred-percent on board: after a few six packs.

After puking in the shrubs, a bad experience with Viagra, a Sex-Ed course gone wrong, and a slew of other mishaps courtesy of his family and friends, Gavin is pretty sure this list will be the death of him.

Sometimes, trying to make someone love you with a list isn't always the best idea. Especially when "Show her your penis" is the first "to-do" item...

I am a huge fan of Tara Sivec's Chocolate Lovers series so was so excited that she is continuing with the Chocoholics spin off with their kids. The first installment is Gavin Ellis.

You're probably also wondering how in the hell I can possibly be twenty-five years old when just yesterday I was four. I know, it's a tough pill to swallow, I'm not a foul-mouthed, cute little kid anymore. I'm now a foul-mouthed, cute adult. I take after my parents, so obviously I'm good looking. I walked around for most of my childhood talking about my penis to anyone who would listen. Owning it when people say I'm hot isn't conceited. It's me being comfortable with who I am. 

Gavin  has gone from a penis obsessed four year old to a penis obsessed twenty-five year old. Namely that his is not getting any action and that he wants his best friend, Charlotte Gilmore. They grew up together since their parents are long time best friends. But he is worried that if he makes a move and bombs then he will lose her friendship. 

My main purpose in life isn't to get in Charlotte's pants. Sure, it's something I dream about. Well, wet dream about. ...but it's not the ultimate goal. I want her to love me. I want her to see me as something other than a friend. I want her to realize that we're soul mates. 

Gavin and his friend Tyler come up with a creative list to win her over and it is one hilarious scene after another as they make their way down the list. Poor Gavin. My heart just broke for him, but I was laughing at the same time. What a strange combination, but totally true. All he wants to do is show Charlotte he loves her and have her love him back, but it is one crazy, messed up, funny catastrophe after another causing mortification and pain. Gavin is unsure, scared, inexperienced, and just plain awkward. At times he still seemed like an immature teenager and not a twenty-five year old man. But then again all the adults in this series are somewhat immature.

"You don't have it under control. What we have her is a failure to know what the f*** you're doing when it comes to chicks."~Uncle Drew

And Charlotte is just as inept as he is. And she has her own friend helping her along the way. She and Gavin are really a serious mess.  She is nervous, fearful, totally inexperienced, and  ungraceful. Together they literally have to feel their way and sometimes it is painful physically or emotionally. Ultimately they are both just terrified of losing their friendship. 

I don't even know when it happened--when he turned from annoying little boy to hot as f***. It's almost like he went to sleep one night as a little kid and woke up a man--a man with a great body and gorgeous face with a dimple in his cheek that is to die for. 

We get part of it in Gavin's point of view, and part in Charlotte's. I have to admit I am partial to Gavin's just because I have loved him all along even as a outspoken little kid. But I really liked the way Tara organized the book and it added to the suspense. We got to really feel Gavin out without access to Charlotte and then catch up later with her thoughts. But seriously, the character that stole the show was Gavin's obnoxious friend, Tyler. OMFG! He was so crazy with his penchant for a certain Mom, attachment to children's toys, obsession with sex, and appreciation of snarling women. Every time he opened his mouth, I laughed. And we still got a lot with the crazy crew from the Chocolate Lovers series who are now parents to this group of young people featured in this spin off. It is hard to tell if it is nature vs. nurture but these kids are just as wacky as their parents were. Even though the group has aged, they are no less nutty, foul mouthed, outspoken, intrusive, confrontational, and sex oriented. Age did not mature them.  I think Drew still stands out as the most quirky of them all. Him trying to be an adviser about women to Gavin was priceless. Well really all of the parents' interventions were funny.

Their lists were over the top, their follow through was hilarious, and their general awkwardness and insecurities added to the fun. But sometimes I seriously wanted to lock them in a room and force them to talk. These two have been through everything together, they just have to find a way to find the strength to really communicate and figure it all out. Easier said than done with a bunch of noise and interference from dysfunctional family and friends.  Their physical encounters were just as funny as their emotional ones. 

"Why the f*** can't vaginas come with instruction manuals?" 

I do not think it would be possible to have a book that says penis or vagina more. If I got a nickel for every curse word to put in a curse jar then I would be well off. It is not for the easily offended. There are topics, events, and language that push the envelope. But for me that is all part of the wild fun of these books. No one does it better than Tara Sivec. I cannot say enough how unique and thoroughly enjoyable that these two series are. I am always completely shocked and amused by the things that come out of these characters'smouths. I seriously laugh out loud while reading. And I always end with a huge smile on my face. I am not sure anything can top Seduction and Snacks for me because that one literally surprised the hell out of me since it was so unique and different at the time, but this one was enjoyable in its' own right. So bravo Tara Sivec for making me laugh and shocking my senses once again. I cannot get enough of these characters and cannot wait to see more books about the kids...so bring on the girls and for heaven's sakes we need more Tyler!

Thanks to Tara Sivec for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review. 

And, she’s back! Get ready for some unconventional foul-mouthed outspoken entertainment! Gavin is all grown up and although his personality is a bit more serious, he is still funnier than ever. If you have never read Seductions and Snacks, or Tara in general, than I suggest you stop right now, and get your one click finger working. Go on, move it...you know you want to! Do not proceed any further with my review, until you have read at least book one in the Chocolate Lovers series, as Gavin's series is a spin off to that. Can it be read as a standalone? Yeah it can, but I wouldn't suggest it.

What I love:
   * What’s not to love about Tara Sivec?! I mean seriously, this chick can write her butt off. She has her own brand of humor and it never fails to amuse the heck out of me. For me, she is the queen of hilarious, there isn't anyone out there even close to touching her writing style. She just gives light and fluffy a whole other meaning.

"Claire, I need to talk to you about getting on your cell phone plan."

   * Tyler. Remember Drew? Well, Ty is a cuter younger version of crazy Uncle Drew! He has become my all-time new favorite character, like ever! He is beyond hilarious, and I found myself laughing so damn hard when it came to his antics with Gavin's parents, primarily his obsession with Claire. I swear I never knew what was going to fly out of his mouth next. There certainly was never a dull moment with him on scene.

"I want her to love me. I want her to see me as something other than a friend. I want her to realize that we're soul mates. Fuck. Maybe I am getting my period." 

   * Gavin and Charlotte, two totally inept love birds! Best friends since they were young kids, neither believes the other could ever see past the friend part to love them in a more mature sense. Simply adored them. The development and depth of their relationship was so fun and engaging. The buildup of charisma and chemistry was intriguing and definitely there even though they had issues acting on it at times. Sometimes, I seriously just wanted to shake them as they made such a hot mess of things , but most often I was giggling like a little school girl with her first crush, as these two were made for each other. (P.S. I will never look at car sex or Meerkat Manor the same way again!)

   * Tyler and Ava! That is all I am going to say, I suggest if you want to know more you get to one clicking.

   * Drew, bloody hell that man made my insides hurt from laughing. Every time he opened that mouth of his, I automatically thought of the song by C & C Music Factory, Things That Make You Go Hmmm. He is still kinky as ever, and I may even venture to say maybe even a bit more unbalanced, than he was the first time around.  I would give anything to have an Uncle Drew. 

"Mom, I am not afraid of vibrators. If I'm not mistaken, you used to put a vibrator under my crib mattress to get me to sleep when I was a baby. You're lucky I don't turn narcoleptic every time I hear one buzzing." 

   * Crazy, Love and Lists is pure crazy and then some. Nothing has changed, no one has grown up, and in all honesty, I think they may have gotten even crazier. The Chocolate Lovers crew is back and better than ever. Their lack of filter between the brain and mouth knows no bounds; I fricken LOVED every last minute of it. I promise their insanity along with their fun and games won't fail to make you spit your drink out or pee your pants from laughing so hard.

"You're probably also wondering how in the hell I can possibly be twenty-five years old when just yesterday I was four. I know, it's a tough pill to swallow; I'm not a foul-mouthed, cute little kid anymore. I'm now a foul-mouthed, cute adult."

What I struggled with:
   * There were moments I had a hard time wrapping my head around Gavin at 25-years-old being so naive when it came to sex and women. I was often messaging Kim with things like are you sure we read his age right; there is no way he is 25. Gavin’s reactions, comments, and behavior were sometimes a bit unbelievable, especially with the way his family is, and the type of job he works at. Therefore, I was rather distracted from his story a bit. Other than that, Gavin and his quirky family rocked my socks off. 

If you're looking for some cute and crass laugh out loud fun, than I urge you to grab the Chocolate Lovers series, along with Love and Lists. I guarantee you won't be disappointed in the least bit! 

Thank you, Tara Sivec, for providing me with an ARC of Love and Lists in exchange for my honest opinion.

Tara Sivec Website/Facebook/Goodreads/Twitter
Tara Sivec is a wife, mom, chauffeur, cheerleading coach, soccer coach, babysitter, short-order cook, genius and albino squirrel hunter. She lives in Ohio with her husband and two kids. In her spare time she likes read, write and cover things in chocolate. Most of her material comes from real life experiences with family and friends. Lucky for them, the names have been changed to protect the innocent (aka, drunk).

Tara also writes under the pen name T.E. Sivec where she can be serious, suspenseful and not at all funny.

Hosted by Madison Says
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Giveaway Info: Up for grabs: 2 winners will receive ebook copies of Love & Lists. 
2 winners will receive signed paperback copies of Love & Lists. 
And the grandprize winner will receive a signed paperback copy of Love & Lists along with an L&L tote bag filled with fun swag! (Open everywhere).

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