Dani+Nash and Rock Album Audiobook
I've been floored by the number of folks who have read AVENGED BY LOVE! WOW! Between the reviews and the women reaching out to share their own pelvic pain stories with me, I've been pretty emotional. THANK YOU! As May ended, I closed the crazy school year on a Zoom meeting with my first graders. I was happy, sad, happy, sad, happy, sad. Yes, just like that. It was bitter sweet to be putting my teacher hat aside for good. I cried quite a bit, and then I reminded myself how LUCKY I am to have built such beautiful relationships with so many children and their families over the last 15 years. Those relationships aren't going anywhere.
ARE YOU, YOUR CHILDREN, OR YOUR GRANDKIDS DONE WITH YOUR SCHOOL YEAR? WHAT DO YOU DO TO CELEBRATE THE END OF THE YEAR? How did I celebrate the end of the school year? I dug into several nonfiction books on Navy SEAL life. WHY? Well, to get into Nash Wellsley's head, of course! The books I read were: Among Heroes, The Red Circle, and The Killing School which are all written by a former Navy SEAL sniper, Brandon Webb. I thought they'd be dry...but you guys, NOT AT ALL. I ripped through those books in no time. These are the things that hit me about the SEALs and their platoons:
HONOR, PRIDE, SACRIFICE, FAMILY
None of that is surprising, right? But the FAMILY piece hit me extra hard. The part where they build a family of brothers who aren't theirs by DNA but are made theirs by blood. You know I have a special spot in my heart for just this sort of FAMILY. The other thing that struck and inspired me was their "never quit" and "strive for perfection" attitude. Not attitude really, but requirement. They have to give 5,000 percent every day. They train constantly, even AFTER they make the team. It blew me away. This quote struck me particularly hard because I feel like it can apply to all of us, especially if you replace "winning" with "success:
"Winning is hard, and it takes more courage than most people know. Winning isn’t about being lucky, or fortune smiling on you from above, or being graced with special talents. Winning is something you decide on, something that comes from the inside." ―Brandon Webb
I know the quote applies to me in this book business, which is certainly not for the faint of heart. It may not require literal BLOOD to be spilled... maybe just some figurative blood. 😉
The other quote I couldn't get out of my head was this one:
Brandon quotes one of his fallen teammates, Glen Doherty: “Life goes by in a blink,” I told my kids. “And here’s something Uncle Glen taught us—you should each live your own lives, doing what you love. Abandon your dreams for no one.”
Are you doing what you love? Is it something you can change? What are you working on right now that takes courage? Okay, rant done about Brandon and the SEALs, but if you're interested in checking out his books, check out his website: https://brandontylerwebb.com/ The very best thing about the books were the Dani and Nash scenes that came tumbling into my head while reading them. SOOOOOO many good scenes. I cannot wait to write each and every one of them. Here's a list of things they involve:
An Old Georgian Plantation
Music Awards Ceremony
Have I totally and absolutely confused you? If you're intrigued, you could add them to your Goodreads TBR shelf here, or, if you REALLY want to make sure you don't miss it, you could pre-order them: Add Dani + Nash's book, Damaged Desires, on Goodreads Pre-order Dani + Nash's book, Damaged Desires, on Amazon The book isn't releasing until October, but... I feel like that's right around the corner the way this year is flying by. I also got some Dani + Nash inspiration from the Taylor Swift LOVER Concert live from Paris. Steve and I watched it, and y'all.... when she sang "The Man" and "The Archer," I had MORE scenes popping into place. I wasn't even planning on using any Taylor songs for Dani's part of this book. But I guess am!
MY LIFE AS AN ALBUM AUDIOBOOKS
We hit some "life" snags with the audiobooks, but we're back on a roll again. MY LIFE AS A ROCK ALBUM is in REVIEW right now as we speak with the audiobook gods at Audible. Once they APPROVE it, I'll be back with a GIVEAWAY for some copies and how you can get your hands on it with the Audible package. If you remember, this book is narrated by the INCREDIBLE Sarah Puckett and Neill Thorne. Here's the sample on YouTube with Neil voicing Seth. Gives me goosebumps!
Sarah went right from working on Rock Album to work on My Life as a Mixtape. I can't wait to share her voicing Wynn! I love it! The very talented Michael Johnson is narrating Lonnie. I have a LONG, 15 minute sample for you of that ready to go on YouTube. Check it out here:
MORE BOOK GOODNESS
Most of you know that I was in a huge book lull from a reader's perspective this year. I barely read anything January through April. But after reading Maria Luis's Road to Fire and Amy Harmon's Where the Lost Wander, my reading mojo came back. THANK GOODNESS! I read eight books in May (three of them were those Navy Seal books I told you about earlier). Woot, woot. Here's TWO of my favorites:
Kennedy Ryan's QUEEN MOVE is a boy-next-door, second chance romance that hit ALL the things I love. Kids growing up together, getting separated, finding each other again. Plus, it's KENNEDY, so it has beautiful descriptions and kick butt women.
Dig a little and you'll find photos of me in the bathtub with Ezra Stern. Get your mind out of the gutter. We were six months old.
Pry and one of us might confess we saved our first kiss for each other. The most clumsy, wet, sloppy . . . spectacular thirty seconds of my adolescence. Get into our business and you'll see two families, closer than blood, torn apart in an instant.
Twenty years later, my "awkward duckling" best friend from childhood, the boy no one noticed, is a man no one can ignore.
𝙁𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙧. 𝙁𝙞𝙚𝙧𝙘𝙚𝙧. 𝙎𝙢𝙖𝙧𝙩𝙚𝙧.
Tell me it's wrong. Tell me the boy who always felt like mine is now the man I can’t have.When we find each other again, everything stands in our way--secrets, lies, promises. But we didn't come this far to give up now. And I know just the move to make if I want to make him mine.
➜ Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2V4HLvZ
➜ Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/queenmove
Erika Kelly's CAN'T HELP FALLING IN LOVE is a surprise baby, single mom, second chance love story that is so sweet that it curled into my heart. I loved that the angst in this book was low when it could have been off the charts. I loved how ALL the characters had depth even the people you wanted to hate but couldn't. And POSIE! Seriously, the cutest. If you loved Edie in My Life as a Mixtape, than you'll love Posie, too! It doesn't release until June 11th, but you can pre-order it here: https://amazon.com/dp/B086RY8BW9/
UP NEXT ON MY KINDLE:
One last book that I want to mention, is the one that is NEXT on my reading list. It's by the most beautiful hearted indie author you'll ever meet, my friend Clare Lesbirel. BOOKISH PRINCESS is a Beauty and the Beast retelling, and I can't wait to dig my hands into it! It's available now: https://amazon.com/dp/B086RV5LZB/
Before I say goodbye, I wanted to let you know that my monthly newsletter winner is Ashley Johnston! Congrats Ashley. I've emailed you at the 85 yahoo email address you signed up with, so if you don't see the email, check your spam folders. Want to get in on the monthly giveaway? Just by subscribing to my newsletter, you're automatically entered every month: http://bit.ly/LJEBooksnl When I check back in the day My Life as a Rock Album is live on audiobook, I'll have another Instagram giveaway to share also. It has some incredible authors involved (like Julia Kent, AM Johnson, Mika Jolie, Jessica Park, and MORE), so don't forget to read the blog post when it comes out, or better yet, subscribe so you see it first. Until next time, please take care of yourself, and...
LJ ♬ "𝓌𝒽𝑒𝓇𝑒 𝓂𝓊𝓈𝒾𝒸 & 𝓈𝓉𝑜𝓇𝒾𝑒𝓈 𝒸𝑜𝓁𝓁𝒾𝒹𝑒" ♬