Review Tour and Giveaway: STAY: A.L. Jackson

STAY (Bleeding Stars #5)
A.L. Jackson

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From NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author A.L. Jackson comes the next sexy, gripping Bleeding Stars Stand-Alone Novel…

I’m Ash Evans. The life of the party. Hot. Rich. Charismatic. A tattooed rock star with the world at my feet. I burn through women faster than the strike of a match. 

I’ve embraced my lifestyle and live it to the fullest. Until the day my lifestyle caught up to me. 

Willow Langston found me at my lowest. Literally. Facedown in a puddle of my own blood. 

I owe her my life and I have three months to repay that debt. What I never should have done was touch her. Kiss her. Take her to my bed. 

Love wasn’t supposed to be a part of the equation. I gave up that nasty complication a long damned time ago. Now I want her more than my next breath. But she doesn’t know what I know. 

Do I leave to protect her? Or can I face my demons and ask her to Stay?

A.L.Jackson has done it again. Not sure how she continues to rip me to shreds and then build me back up, but the woman has done it once again! This story pulled me in, held me hostage, gave me hope, broke my heart, twisted everything all up, and did it over and over again. She is a masterful storyteller with vivid imagery and poetic words that bleed the intensity of the feelings and the story and their perfect use ties it all back together with the the theme of the book.

Ash Evans has always seemed like the easy-going, reckless, life of the party, and playboy. He loves his friends, but won't let women get close to his  heart. But under his image is a man who is broken by his past and his heart is under armor. He feels like he ruins everyone he cares about in some way and is self deprecating and guilty. He thinks if he does not get close then he can't hurt someone. He is full of life, but really terrified of fully living it and feeling it.

When Ash is left beaten and in need of saving, Willow Langston is there. She is shy, sweet, honest, and proud. Her past has hurt her too and left her feeling abandoned by those she loved. She is broken but not weak. She has her own spirit and fire, but she has been hiding out licking her wounds from a bad relationship. Her life has been stressful and her dreams just out of her reach. And she had no idea that saving a man would change her life.

These two have such chemistry and a connection. It is like two souls colliding. They both have pasts that have shaped who they are and have made them hide their hearts and vulnerability. They are terrified of loving, losing, or hurting someone else. But they both are in need of saving in their own way. Ash sees her as too good for him and worries that he would only ruin her. But he cannot seem to stay away. He wants her and knows he should not taint her, but continues to find ways to keep her in his life...at least temporarily as he keeps telling himself. Pretending is only safe if it is really pretending. There is danger in the pretending becoming real, especially when Ash does not think he can ever allow himself to have it. But the more reality and real feelings begin to sneak into their carefully constructed world, the harder it is to keep their hearts locked down. 

Ash keeps his secrets hidden deep and does not want to let her see his biggest regrets from his past. His biggest fear is falling in love and hurting someone else. Hers is being alone, lonely, and not being able to love someone. Willow is a girl who needs to find someone who will give her all she needs. Ash is well aware of this, but has no faith that it could ever be him. But the more secrets are hidden, the more potential they have to destroy and hurt.

She just wants him to stay. He's afraid he will ruin everything good for her. And when his secrets are laid bare, it has the potential to do just that. And at that point will it be too late to fight for the chance he was afraid to take? Or can he convince her to stay?

They are definitely a risk with lots of baggage and reasons to leave and cut their losses, but the reward for staying has the potential to give them everything they ever wanted but were afraid they would never have.

This is an emotional, sexy, intense, heart-wrenching story of  two people in need of healing, hope, and to truly feel loved. It's about chasing dreams even if they feel out of reach and allowing them to take root. It is told in both of their points of view allowing us to see their innermost turmoil, heartbreak, fear, and strong feelings that are so hard to deny. The secrets are gradually revealed and woven into the story adding suspense and throwing in some surprises and twists. I will admit that I figured out a twist, but the way it played out was still intriguing.

The other band members of Sunder and their mates are all part of the story. They provide humor, support, and peer pressure when needed. They are family and care about each other deeply. I enjoy the relationship of Ash and his sister, Edie, even though her story that we learned in WAIT is also part of his darker past.

I totally fell for Ash. Even though he was a tortured soul, he was also charming, sexy, sweet, protective, and fun. His heart was so big, but he had such fears and underestimated himself. And Willow was such a likable heroine. She was so real and caring, but was strong and was trying to learn to be brave. But they were held back by their own histories and insecurities.

A.L. Jackson brought these two complicated and endearing characters to life. She let me see right into their hearts and minds, made me feel it all, and I lived it with them. It is not always easy. There are plenty of challenges and parts that are hard to take, but it is also breathtaking, poignant, and powerful. There is a big gesture in this one that totally blew me away by ramping up the anticipation and then brought tears to my eyes.

I have loved each installment so far and am looking forward to STAND. I have even more affection towards Zee after this one. 

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review. 

Willow’s determination to live her dreams was strong, even as she couldn’t see how her dreams would come true at this point in her life. Her mom's wisdom was beautiful and added to the already emotional story.

Ash feels the weight of his decisions -- decisions that have hurt those he loves most. After the night that changed everything, he decided to keep things easy and avoid hurting anyone else again.

When Willow finds Ash beaten and bloody outside her shop, she doesn’t connect the man to the celebrity in town. She does what she feels is right, finding him help, and then goes about her way trying to figure out how to keep her mother’s shop afloat. Ash is determined to thank the good Samaritan who saved him, even if she doesn’t recognize him or want his money. Finding a way to get her to accept the money also means he gets to spend more time with her. He is intrigued not only by the fact that she won’t take money without working for it, but also by a connection that he feels and has felt since the day she rescued him.

There was so much emotion in this story. This series has established a pattern of very emotional stories, and from the time Willow found Ash beaten and near death on her doorstep, the emotions run high for these two. The ways these two were connected hurt more than I could have imagined even as it gave them a measure of peace.

Ash’s determination that Willow get all her dreams only confirmed how perfect he was. I spent much of the book swooning about how perfect he was despite his assertions to the contrary. His actions speak louder than his words.

Broken doesn't mean weak.

Over and over, Willow repeats this mantra. To herself. To Ash. Broken does not mean weak. This idea resonated with me and I love each way that the story circled back to this idea. As each character found their inner strength to overcome stumbling blocks, this simple phrase echoed. The symbolism throughout the book is perfect for these two and the lives they lead: the dandelion, the wisdom of Willow’s mom, Ash’s music.

There are threads woven through this story that shine beyond what I normally expect from A.L. Jackson’s work. At times I wished parts of the story moved at a different pace, but overall, this was a joy to read. Each thread combines perfectly to weave a deeply emotional story.
It is so great to see the other Sunder men living their happy, peaceful lives. Now just need Zee to find his own, hopefully Stand will give him his peace. After the things we learn about him in this book I am anticipating his story even more.
I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review.
Her lips parted, and her expression churned in confusion.
Lust. Need. Want. Fear.
All of them played out across her delicate features.
I shouldn’t have. I knew I shouldn’t. But there was nothing I could do to stop myself.
Always, always in the moment.
That was me.
I pressed her harder against the wall, my straining cock eager against her jean-clad pussy.
Desperate for friction.
Anxious for relief.
Everything sparked, and I could have sworn the room spun, the ground shifting below our feet.
She gasped out in surprise, eyes so damned wide. Her nails pricked where they dug into the flesh of my shoulders.
Hanging on.
What was this girl doing to me?
I leaned down, my mouth close to her ear. My voice came on a rough murmur. “Do you want me?”
A Stone in the Sea (Bleeding Stars #1) 
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Our 5 star reviews

He wanted nothing at all…

Until he found she had everything to give…

Sunder lead singer and guitarist Sebastian Stone has everything—fans, fame, and fortune. He also has a heart full of bitterness and a reputation for a short-fused temper. But an outward reputation rarely reveals the true man inside. Facing assault charges after trying to protect his younger brother, Sebastian is sent to Savannah, Georgia to lie low until the dust settles in L.A.

Shea Bentley is beautiful, kind, and hiding from the very lifestyle Sebastian has always embraced.

When the mysterious, tattooed stranger begins hanging out at the bar where she works, Shea is quick to recognize he is nothing but trouble, but she's helpless to the way her body lights up every time his intense gray eyes tangle with hers.

They both soon find themselves drowning in a sea of desire and passion that won’t let them up for air.

Sebastian knows firsthand secrets never die, and he’s not the only one who’s hiding them.

Loving someone always comes with a price. But will it be Shea’s past that costs them everything?

Drowning to Breathe (Bleeding Stars #2)
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Kim and Rachel's 5 star reviews and Tammy's 6 star review

The danger in pretending is it becoming real...

Sebastian Stone, Sunder front man and guitarist with a rap sheet about ten miles long, escaped to Savannah, Georgia, to get away from the trouble he’d caused.

Not find more of it.

The moment he saw Shea Bentley, he saw beneath all her sweet and innocence to something that went deeper.


Their relationship was built on secrets; their love built on lies.

Sebastian never imagined how deep her secrets went.

When the past and present collide, Sebastian and Shea find themselves fighting for a future neither believed they deserved. Their passion is consuming and their need unending.

Now, holding the truth in his hands, Sebastian is faced with sacrificing everything he’s come to love to protect Shea and his family.

Two pasts intertwined.

Two lives bound.

Will their demons drown them or will Shea and Sebastian finally learn to breathe?

Where Lightning Strikes (Bleeding Stars #3)
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Do you know what it feels like right before lightning strikes?

How you can feel the current running through your veins? The trembles of warning that ripple through the air? It was a thrill Tamar King chased all her life until it became the very thing she had to escape.

For the last four years, Tamar King has hidden herself in an isolated world she created. She was safe. No one could touch her. Until Lyrik West walked through her door.

He’s the lead guitarist for Sunder and everything she can never have. The dark and beautiful rock star becomes everything she craves. 

Lyrik’s life has been devoted to his band and that success has cost him. Bitter, hard, and filled with regret, he refuses to lose himself again, but from the moment he sees her, he wants one night with Tamar King. 

The gorgeous bartender is more than he bargained for. Their attraction is consuming. Their desire overpowering. With one touch, they ignite. 

But is it worth the cost of getting burned? 

She’s a gorgeous nightmare and he’s a wicked dream… 

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She is his strength and he is her weakness. And this time he won’t let her go.

Edie Evans is gorgeous.
She’s also the definition of off-limits.
But that didn’t stop me from sneaking into her room to comfort her at night.
But guys like me? We destroy everything, so it should have been no surprise when I destroyed us, too.
The night I sent her running, I thought I’d never see her again.
Until I saw her standing like a vision in the crowd.

Austin Stone is dangerous.
He broke my heart and I refused to give him the chance to do it again.
It’s been years since I’ve seen him, and now I can’t do anything but stare at the gorgeous, tattooed man playing onstage. I should run. I know I should. But like a fool, I run straight back to him.
Our desire is overpowering.
Our need unrelenting.

She is my hope.
He is my weakness.

We should have known a passion this intense would burn us right into the ground.
A.L. Jackson

A.L. Jackson is the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. She writes emotional, sexy, heart-filled stories about boys who usually like to be a little bit bad. Her bestselling series include THE REGRET SERIES, CLOSER TO YOU, as well as the newest BLEEDING STARS novels. Watch for the next installments, WAIT and STAY, coming in 2016. If she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the pool with her family, sipping cocktails with her friends, or of course with her nose buried in a book. Be sure not to miss new releases and sales from A.L. Jackson - Sign up to receive her newsletter  or text “jackson” to 96000 to receive short but sweet updates on all the important news.

Connect with A.L. Jackson online at her WEBSITE / Snapchat: aljackson
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