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Series: Marked Men

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Blog Tour Review + Contest: Asa by Jay Crownover

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, Blog Tour, Contest, New Adult, Review2 Comments

Blog Tour Review + Contest: Asa by Jay Crownover

Blog Tour Review + Contest: Asa by Jay CrownoverAsa by Jay Crownover
Series: Marked Men,
Also in this series: Rule, Jet, Rome, Nash, Rowdy
Published by William Morrow on 21 April 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Friendship, New Adult
Pages: 416
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Rule, Jet, Rome, Nash, Better When He's Bad, Rowdy, Leveled, Built, Charged

Place(s) Traveled To: Denver, Colorado // Louisville, Kentucky

First Line(s): Not too long ago when I watched a girl purposely get as drunk as this pretty one did, I would’ve moved in for the kill.

With the release of Asa, Jay Crownover’s Marked Men comes to a close and it was with mixed feelings that I started this book as I wasn’t ready to leave this world or these characters. (Even with all their crazy, cooky, totally out there names.) We first meet Asa in Jet (my review) as he is Ayden’s older brother and a bit of an ass, if I’m honest. But over the course of the series you see Asa start to change and become more redeamable as he leaves his criminal ways behind him to try and make a better life. Along the way he also meets Royal, Saint’s (Nash Review) neighbor and friend and they are often tossed together as they have the same group of friends. Asa, thinking he’s not good enough for Royal since he’s a reforming criminal and she’s a cop. Royal, on the other hand, has other ideas.

Overall, I did enjoy Asa and Royal’s story but its not my favorite in the series. There was just a lot of back and forth going over the same issues again and again that it got old. Then there was their big dramatic, lets break up moment that was just so eye-roll inducing that it wasn’t funny. It was all another case that things would have been fine if they just talked about it and got it out into the open but instead its this long drawn out thing. Not to mention how crazy unrealistic the whole resolution of that matter was because there is no way that little seed won’t grate over time.

Asa Quote

Speaking of seeds, Asa is also filled with lots of seeds for other stories so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Crownover has a spin off series in the works, currently titled The Saints of Denver. That will bring in some of the side characters that we’ve met over the course of the Marked Men books. Right now I have a pretty good idea of who most of the stories will be about so it will be interesting to see how right I am on that. I also think that Asa’s story may have been a better fit to kick off that series since this book never even visited the tattoo shop that played such a role in all the previous stories. Even the characters from the previous books weren’t as present in this one as the previous ones.

If you’ve enjoyed the Marked Men books then you will most like enjoy Asa as well. Its the sort of story and plot that I’ve come to expect from Crownover with a little random, over the top action thrown in for fun. There were definitely elements of this story I could have done without as I don’t think they added value to Asa and Royal’s story ARC but they don’t distract from it either so it could have been worse. The names still drive me nuts and I don’t think that will ever change. But despite that I will check out the spin off series and continue to read Jay Crownover’s books as they are like crack and I can’t get enough.

CLICK HERE TO READ AN EXCERPT FROM ASA!!!!

irishdarkblue

IR - Asa

 

Add The Shamless Hour by Sarina Bowen to Goodreads.

Add All Played Out by Cora Carmack to Goodreads. (Review on 04 May)

Tour Schedule

April 13

Book Angel Booktopia-Excerpt & Review
Love Between the Sheets-Review
Read This Hear That-Review
Resch Reads and Reviews-Review

April 14

Starbucks & Books Obsession-Review
Desert Divas Book Addiction-Review
Red Hot + Blue Reads-Excerpt & Review
Three Chicks & Their Books-Excerpt & Review

April 15

BCS Reviews-Review
Lustful Literature-Review
Sassy Divas Book Blog-Excerpt & Review
Lulo Fangirl-Excerpt

April 16

A Bookish Escape-Review
Works of Fiction-Review
Fiction Fangirls-Review
No BS Book Reviews-Excerpt & Review
Ramblings From This Chick-Review

April 17

A Literary Perusal-Review
Literati Literature Lovers-Excerpt & Review
Typical Distractions-Review
Becca the Bibliophile-Excerpt & Review

April 18

Made For You Book Reviews-Review
Ticket To Anywhere-Excerpt & Review
Belle of the Literati-Excerpt & Review

April 19

Holly’s Hot Reads-Review
Kimberlyfaye Reads-Excerpt & Review
Books, Chocolate & Lipgloss-Review

April 20

Novels on the Run-Review
FicWishes-Excerpt & Review
Give Me Books-Review
Stuck in Books-Excerpt & Review

April 21

Book Bitches Blog-Excerpt & Review
Prisoners of Print-Review
Krista’s Dust Jacket-Excerpt & Review
Waves of Fiction-Review

April 22

Book Starlets-Excerpt & Review
Red Cheeks Reads-Excerpt & Review
Vi3tabe-Review
Romance Addict Book Blog-Review

April 23

Jen in Bookland-Review
Stuck in YA Books-Excerpt & Review
Cocktails and Books-Excerpt & Review

April 24

Bestsellers & Beststellars-Review
Reading Between the Wines-Review
The Book Enthusiast-Excerpt & Review

April 25

Cruising Susan Book Reviews-Review
Nose Stuck in a Book-Excerpt & Review
The Book Lovers Codex-Review

April 26

Naughty and Nice Book Blog-Excerpt & Review
Once Upon A Twilight-Review
Grown Up Book Reviews-Excerpt

Contest

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three-stars
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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Review: Rowdy by Jay Crownover

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Rowdy by Jay CrownoverRowdy by Jay Crownover
Series: Marked Men,
Also in this series: Rule, Jet, Rome, Nash, Asa
Published by William Morrow on 21 October 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Friends to Lovers, Friendship, Girls & Women, Love & Romance, New Adult, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues
Pages: 416
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: Rule, Jet, Rome, Nash, Better When He's Bad, Asa, Leveled, Built, Charged

Place(s) Traveled To: Denver, Colorado // Boulder, Colorado // Loveless, Texas

First Line(s): I don’t have a lot of great memories from my childhood.

 

Rowdy by Jay Crownover is the latest installment in her Marked Men Series and involves Rowdy, a man with a mysterious past, and Salem a girl from that past. Rowdy was hurt badly in the past and as a result he’s never really had a serious relationship and one of the girls that hurt him was Salem’s younger sister, Poppy. Salem and Poppy were Rowdy’s neighbors when he lived in Texas and the daughters of the local preacher. Let’s pause for a moment and think about those names, Salem and Poppy…2 more strange names and ones that we’re supposed to believe belong to the daughters of a very religious family. I just don’t buy it. Add in the Sayer character that is introduced later on in this book and my eyes almost rolled out of my head. It just really takes me out of the story having all these crazy names as it just doesn’t seem plausible that not a single person in the Denver area would be named Jennifer or Ryan or something more common. Anywho back to the story.

Rowdy is jaded and aloof and Salem is determined to work her way back into his life. She feels that with just a couple weeks at a job in Denver that she’s proven that she has staying power. Even though she spent years as Rowdy’s neighbor before she left without a word. She’s a bit brash and demanding and I do get Rowdy wanting to have a little emotional distance between them. I also think that Rowdy’s walls come down a little too quickly to be real and I just didn’t believe in this story as much as I have others in the series. There was the influx of new characters that was a bit distracting as well as all these little subplots going on that offer hints of new stories but ones that won’t come as the next book, Asa, is currently scheduled to be the last of the Marked Men books. So why add in all the drama of a long lost best friend, a long lost love, and a long lost relation to the mix? It just gets a bit muddled.

For the most part I did enjoy Rowdy and Salem’s story but felt that we were told more than we were shown. Rowdy didn’t have the same emotional impact as others in the series as it didn’t seem to dive as deep. Rowdy was standoffish and wary of Salem and then in a blink he was head over heels in love. The subplots were also more of a distraction than an asset. It just stretch plausibility too much at times. Rowdy and Salem both annoyed me at times but I did enjoy all the cameos from the characters in the previous books. Rowdy is a quick read and I managed to read it in just a few hours once I really sat down with it. It was a good addition to the series but not one that will ever be a favorite of mine. It also made me look forward to Asa’s story more than I had been initially and I know that I will be sad to say goodbye to these characters. Crazy, unrealistic names and all.

 

irishdarkblue

 

 

Rowdy Quote
four-stars
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Saturday, April 26, 2014

Review: Nash by Jay Crownover

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review1 Comment

Review: Nash by Jay CrownoverNash by Jay Crownover
Series: Marked Men,
Also in this series: Rule, Jet, Rome, Rowdy, Asa
Published by William Morrow on 29 April 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Death & Dying, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Friendship, Love & Romance, New Adult
Pages: 400
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: Rule, Jet, Rome, Better When He's Bad, Rowdy, Asa, Leveled, Built, Charged

Place(s) Traveled To: Denver, Colorado

First Line(s): High School…Not the best years of my life.

The moment I finished Rome by Jay Crownover I knew that I had to dive right into the next book Nash. As with the previous books in the series I devoured this one and once I started it I couldn’t put it down. I loved Nash and his backstory was so heartbreaking and just has you cheering him on to find his happily ever after. Saint on the other hand annoyed me at times at the assumptions she made and how she let one experience a dozen or so years ago define her whole life. Yes, people in high school can be cruel but what she thought she heard wasn’t the total earth shattering “I’ll never trust a boy ever again” sort of thing. But once I got past that aspect of her I did begin to like Saint and like her with Nash. In the end, they ended up being a good complement for each other.

In some ways, Nash is your typical New Adult story with broken and flawed characters who are looking to find some completion. Though in this case the one most broken isn’t the one that you might think. And that is where the similarities of your typical NA story end because the writing and the plot of the Marked Men novels is better than other NA stories that I’ve read. Nash has his entire world turned upside down in a single night and its then that he also becomes reaquainted with a girl from his past. In a world where girls on every other page are fawning and falling all over these boys Saint isn’t one. This makes for some interesting scenes between the two and the chemistry just sizzles off the page.

I loved Nash and how vulnerable he was compared to those around him. Oh the other Marked Men boy have their issues but there was always something that set Nash apart from them in the previous books. I loved getting into his head and seeing what made him tick. It broke my heart on numerous occasions when Saint would say and do something to hurt him. She wasn’t always the most likeable of characters in that way but she did make up for her hurts as the book went on. Their ending did seem a bit rushed but even with that Nash has been my favorite in this series so far.

The thing that bothered me most as I got to Nash was all the crazy out there names. If I were to go on this series alone I wouldn’t think that there was a single Bob or Mary in all of Colorado. I have nothing against creative names but its all just getting a bit ridiculous in these books. Even when preacher kids are mentioned they were named Poppy and Salem. There is even a Sunshine running around this town as well. Its just gotten to the point where I roll my eyes whenever a new character is mentioned as I know they’ll be called something outlandish and over the top. I’ve also started to rename some of the characters in my head to add a little bit of reality to this world.

Crazy names aside I am now going through some series Marked Men withdrawal and can not wait until the next book in the series which will feature Rowdy. Rowdy is a bit of an unknown in the series but I look forward to learning more about him and seeing the old gang again. The Marked Men books are ones that I highly recommend to those thinking about reading New Adult. They are total book crack for me and Jay Crownover is totally on my autoread list as a result.

irishdarkblue

four-stars
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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Review: Rome by Jay Crownover

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Rome by Jay CrownoverRome by Jay Crownover
Series: Marked Men,
Also in this series: Rule, Jet, Nash, Rowdy, Asa
Published by William Morrow on 07 January 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Family, Friendship, Girls & Women, Love & Romance, New Adult, War & Military
Pages: 384
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: Rule, Jet, Nash, Better When He's Bad, Rowdy, Asa, Leveled, Built, Charged

Place(s) Traveled To: Denver, Colorado

First Line(s): Its my favorite thing ever to have all the people I love in one place at the same time.

Even though I was a little disappointed in Jet, I couldn’t wait to dive into Rome by Jay Crownover. We first meet Rome in Rule as he is Rule’s older brother and until the big secret in that book comes out he is the most steady and stable of all the characters in this series. Rome is an ex-marine and part of how he lost his way is the after effects of events in Afghanistan that left him injured and those under his command dead. He is lost, suffering from PTSD, and trying to deal with family secrets and so is a bit volatile and just makes your heart ache for him. His family know how he was before and believe that if they just let things slide that he’ll find his way again. Cora and Brite however continually call him on his crap with mixed results.

Cora is also a character we first meet at the start of the series and if the guys in the previous books could be called Bad Boys then she is the equivalent of the Bad Girl. She’s opinionated and tattooed and refuses to take crap from anyone. She’s almost a little too sharp around the edges at times but once you learn her backstory you can understand where she is coming from and how she is the way she is. And as such you can understand her better though I may not always agree with how she deals with it all. Although, with what Rome is dealing with he needs someone who isn’t afraid to be blunt and abrasive which is something that Cora can do well.

As with Rule and Jet, I read Rome in just a few hours. Once I started I couldn’t put it down and I needed to know what would happen next with not just with the central characters but with the secondary ones as well. One thing that I’ve enjoyed with the Marked men series is how Jay Crownover keeps all of her characters around with each successive story. They don’t just disappear or are barely mentioned but all have an integral part in the story to play. Although Nash does have a bigger part in this one than the others and a big part of that is probably because his story is the one that follows this.

I liked Rome, a lot. I liked his and Cora’s chemistry and I loved their story. I liked how life threw them both a curveball and how they managed to deal with it. This one was fast paced and filled with lots of heart-achy feel good feels. If you are thinking of trying New Adult then you should really check out the Marked Men series. Great writing, good stories, and odd names aside, lots of good romancy emotions.

irishdarkblue

four-stars
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Monday, April 21, 2014

Review: Jet by Jay Crownover

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Jet by Jay CrownoverJet by Jay Crownover
Series: Marked Men, Book 2
Also in this series: Rule, Rome, Nash, Rowdy, Asa
Published by William Morrow on 28 May 2013
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Love & Romance, Music & Musicians, New Adult
Pages: 416
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Rule, Rome, Nash, Better When He's Bad, Rowdy, Asa, Leveled, Built, Charged

Place(s) Traveled To: Denver, Colorado // Louisville, Kentucky

First Line(s): It was totally against everything I was supposed to be doing in my new life – to ask a really cute boy in a band to take me home.

Jet by Jay Crownover is the second book in her Marked Men series that started off with bad boy Rule. Jet is a long time friend of Rule and through him he meets Ayden who was Shaw’s roommate and who now lives with Jet and Cora. The story picks up about a year after the events in Rule and the disastrous night when Ayden and Jet almost hooked up but didn’t. Since then there has been a strained friendship between the two as the attraction is still there but neither are brave enough to act on it. I didn’t like Jet as much as Rule and a good part of that had to do with Ayden. She was just so selfish and judgmental and just annoyed me with the majority of her actions.

Nothing Jet did was good enough for Adyen and she wasn’t content in her own skin. She lived a life of secrets and lies and when things started to come out she panicked, lied some more, and  just made a has of everything. She breaks hearts without a care and then later on says that they are to blame when it was all Ayden’s drama and perceived drama. I just wanted to smack her upside the head more often than not and I really didn’t understand why those around her put up with all her bullshit. Ayden is not a girl to be content in life and only seemed to be happy when she was telling those around her what they needed to do to improve their lives.

I also didn’t get Ayden’s behavior around her older brother. The things she did for him and how she was always trying to save him. It just didn’t make sense since she was his younger sister. If she was older than I could have understood this protectiveness more but as she wasn’t I had a hard time wrapping my head around it. I also didn’t get how her mother was so useless and yet would then blame Ayden for her brother getting in trouble or how Ayden didn’t save him. Why was it all on Ayden’s shoulder when she was the baby in the family? And why did she put up with it when she really didn’t seem to care about those around her.

The saving grace of Jet was Jet himself who was a tortured sole and your heart just breaks when you learn his back story. He had a tough life growing up and its easy to see why his is the way he is. All you want is for him to be happy and you just hate how Ayden treats him throughout most of the book. I found it hard to believe in their HEA because of what a royal pain in the a$$ Ayden could be. Not just to Jet but also to her BFF Shaw and to her roommate and friend Cora. I always found it hard to understand why they would want to be around Ayden as she wasn’t all that fun to be around.

I did like the writing of this book and I read it just as quickly as Rule. The pacing and plotting were good. Even with the crazy side story line of Asa’s mob-like ties. I think that storyline kind of overpowered things a bit especially when you add in Jet’s side story as well. Overall I liked Jet but I didn’t love it and it probably won’t be a story that I revisit. Preferring instead to just revisit these characters (mostly Ayden) as secondary ones in other books.

irishdarkblue

three-stars
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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Review: Rule by Jay Crownover

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review4 Comments

Review: Rule by Jay CrownoverRule by Jay Crownover
Series: Marked Men,
Also in this series: Jet, Rome, Nash, Rowdy, Asa
Published by William Morrow on 22 October 2013
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Love & Romance, New Adult
Pages: 432
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: Jet, Rome, Nash, Better When He's Bad, Rowdy, Asa, Leveled, Built, Charged

Place(s) Traveled To: Denver, Colorado // Brookside, Colorado

First Line(s): At first I thought the pounding in my head was my brain trying to fight its way out of my skull after the ten or so shots of Crown Royal I had downed last night, but then I realized the noise was someone storming around in my apartment. She was here, and with dread I remembered that it was Sunday.

Rule by Jay Crownover is the start of a new adult series called Marked Men and takes place in Denver, Colorado. Its also a book that was on my kindle and partially forgotten until another blogger friend began talking about it on twitter and instagram. I was intrigued and in need of a new distraction at the time and quickly fell into the crack that was this series. The first book is Rule and Shaw’s story and is filled with lots of emotional turmoil. Rule had a twin who died a few years prior to the start of the book and Shaw was Remy’s BFF and alleged girlfriend. She was close to the family as her home life wasn’t the best and after Remy’s death has taken it upon herself to keep Rule in the family. But its hard as they are all sorts of screwed up.

The story is fast paced and raw and I loved that even though Rule was your stereotypical bad boy (tattooed, man whore, et cetra) he was also more than the cliche. Just as Shaw was more that the good girl who would redeem the bad boy with her love. Shaw was every bit as broken as Rule just in different ways and when they got over their issues they were able to heal themselves and each other. There were some parts of the story that I could have done without, like the crazy ex-boyfriend, and it was far from perfect but at the time I read it Rule was a great escape novel. It kept me up past my bedtime and I feel in love with all of the characters. I was filled with a need to know more and so was really glad I was able to bounce to several books before I ran out of material.

I also could have done without the cryptic foreshadowing of events and random pointless details that seemed to appear at odd moments in the text. These things would take me out of the story for a few moments  but the characters are what kept pulling me back it. Rule was a heart-achy book for me and I hated when the Rule and Shaw placed barriers between them. Even though I know its sometimes easier to push someone away then to do with some harsh truths. Rule was a good story and a great addition to the New Adult genre as it takes the cliche of it and turns it around to makes it all its own. If you are looking for a new series to read then I highly recommend the Marked Men books.

irishdarkblue

four-stars
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