Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Review: Always by Lynsay Sands

Always by Lynsay Sands
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: November 24, 2015
Rating: 2 stars
Source: eARC from Edelweiss

***Warning: this is an adult book, and for the eyes of mature readers***

Summary (from Goodreads):

New York Times bestselling author Lynsay Sands returns with the unforgettable story of a reluctant bride and groom who soon find common ground in the bedroom . . .

Bastard daughter to the king, Rosamunde was raised in a convent and wholly prepared to take the veil . . . until King Henry declared she would wed Aric, one of his most valiant knights. Suddenly she found herself promising to love, honor, and obey.

Rosamunde's education had not covered a wedding night, but the handsome warrior she was now bound to seemed intent on giving her a lesson in the art of pleasure. In no time, Aric was certain she would surrender to the irresistible passion he promised.

And while Rosamunde's spirited nature often put her at odds with her new husband, his mastery in seduction was quickly melting her resolve—and capturing her heart.

What I Liked:

I know two stars isn't the worst rating ever, but I am SO SAD that I didn't like this one more. I know I really wanted to love this book, going into it. The cover is amazing, the premise sounds so wonderful, and I love Lynsay Sands - but this book wasn't that good, or close. So disappointed!

Aric, knight of King Henry, is determined never to marry, after he finds his betrothed with another man in the stables. But he can't say no to the King when King Henry orders him to marry his illegitimate daughter, Rosamunde. Rosamunde grew up in a convent, caring for animals. She is sweet and naive, and very, very misguided. Marriage to someone who who was prepared to be a bride of God, who is afraid of marital relations, who doesn't want to be married, is not what Aric had in mind. But Aric and Rosamunde can't help the potent attraction between the two of them, nor their budding feelings. Can they start over before it's too late?

Things I did like. Let's see, From the start, I LOVED Aric. His voice is hilarious! He is calm and the silent brooding type, but he also has a temper and can be very grumpy. Apparently I like the grumpy types? He marries Rosamunde and treats her well (in my opinion), and he isn't terribly demanding or forceful or anything like that. She could have done much worse and could have been even a little bit more grateful. Aric is one of my favorite historical romance heroes for the year. Too bad he got paired with... Rosamunde.

What else did I enjoy... well, if there is one thing that Sands can do REALLY well, it is write hot intimate scenes! This book was odd in that Rosamunde had no idea what marital relations consisted of, so the first time was really awkward. The second time was comical. But when Aric started to show her how it's done... the scenes were really hot. I'm sure any and all of Sands' romance novels are really, really steamy. She ever disappoints, in that area!

There was a satisfying ending, as one might come to expect, in historical romance novels. I liked the ending. I also liked how much comedy and humor was in this book, despite the ominous climax. Still, everything leading up to the ending was interesting, and the ending was a good one.

What I Did Not Like:

I think the heart of my problems with this book were with Rosamunde. I have been having an issue with female protagonists, in the past few books I've read (YA, adult, doesn't matter). With Rosamunde, I couldn't stand her naivete. I understand that she was raised in a convent, so I knew and understood that she would be ignorant in some matters, but goodness, she was so air-headed!

Air-headed is a good way to put it. She's also a bit selfish, expecting special treatment at some times, but then expecting everyone to let her do her own thing because that's how she was raised in the convent. No honey, you're married now. I don't think she ever fully grasped the fact that she's married, and her husband is trying to protect her from people who are trying to kill her.

That being said, she never gave a thought or care to Aric and his protection of her. She did anything and everything she wanted, no matter how irrationally it was. I don't want to give specific examples, but trust me, you probably would have wanted to kill her yourself by the halfway through the book. She does so many selfish things, and then turns around and blames Aric, gets mad at Aric, makes it seem like Aric's anger is misplaced.

And then Aric goes and forgives her every time. I personally think that if I were Aric and married to her, I would have sent her back to the abbey after one night, the King's wishes be d***ed. Ahhh! It's so frustrating, how awful of a character Rosamunde was!

She's one of those people that don't deserve the man, who deserves to be alone or dead or both. I wanted to shake her! Even for a historical romance novel, how can she be that dumb and ignorant?!

So all of my frustration is centered around Rosamunde. Which sucks! I liked her until she opened her mouth at the abbey when the King brought Aric to marry her - and that was like, 10% in. Le sigh.

Would I Recommend It:

I can't recommend this novel. I really, really wanted to love it, because it sounded perfect for me (reluctant marriage usually works for me!), I like Lynsay Sands, and the cover is GORGEOUS. Now I refuse to buy this book in print because I didn't like it! Ugh!


2.5 stars -> rounded down to 2 stars. I'll definitely keep reading Sands' books, she is a great romance writer and always writes steamy chemistry in her books. But this one was such a disappointment. I had hoped for something so much better!

Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!

Blog Friends Forever Tour and Giveaway!

Hello, lovelies! Today, I'm participating in the Blog Friends Forever Tour! This fabulous blog event is hosted by Fiction Fare and Swoony Boys Podcast.

For my post, I am doing a blogger interview, with the lovely Pili from In Love With Handmade!

Alyssa: Hi Pili! Thank you for joining me today! I know you've been traveling recently - tell us briefly about where you've been and where you're going!

Pili: Hi there! Always a pleasure Alyssa! Just last week I was in London with my younger nephew and we visited Stonehenge (that I had wanted to visit for the longest time!) and also the Harry Potter studios! I was more excited even that my nephew and I believe that at some point he was a bit embarrased of his geeky Potterhead of an aunt!

Alyssa: I so want to go to Stonehenge one day! What's been your favorite (or several favorite) novel(s) of 2015, so far?

Pili: Oh goodness, I've read so many great books this year! I'm gonna have some real issues to choose my top 10 books by the end of the year! The whole series of The Others by Anne Bishop are instant faves that I read this year, also ADSOM by Victoria Schwab and of course I'm still reeling from the book hangover that was Queen of Shadows! Also Six of Crows that I've recently re-read... really, so many!

Alyssa: Yaasss, Six of Crows for sure! How about your favorite 2015-published book cover?

Pili: As far as my favourite cover for a book published this year... oh boy, so many to choose too! But if I have to choose one and only one... it'd be 5 to 1 by Holly Bodger! I just looooove the colours and the mendhi patterns!! Utterly gorgeous!

Alyssa: I LOVE the cover of that one! Haven't read it yet, unfortunately. Best experience in blogging since you started?

Pili: I've had some really great moments blogging related! But the one that recently shocked me more was a mention on Twitter by a newer blogger that had me on the same tweet with other established bloggers that I admire and had me as one of her #BloggerGoals! That was such a moment for me! I would have never thought my blog would be a reference for anyone!

Alyssa: That is an amazing feeling! If you could recommend one book to someone who isn't really into reading (blasphemy!), what would it be?

Pili: Oh dear, blasphemy indeed! I have my nephews that don't like reading at all (I know, I know, how can that be? Where did the genes go wrong??) and taking them to watch the Hunger Games movies made them pick up the books!

Alyssa: Awww, those nephews. They need to take after their awesome auntie! You and I share a love of Bollywood movies - tell us your favorite?!

Pili: Favourite Bollywood movie? Hands down Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, I have massive massive love for that movie, and not only because Hrithik Roshan is in it, or because it's set in Spain, but both things help! ;) 

Alyssa: Basically, all you have to do is mention "Hrithik" or "Spain". :D What can we expect from you/your blog in the upcoming months of 2015?

Pili: I have been pondering about a name change for the blog for a while, so maybe if I can choose one that I really like, a bit of a change there. But if nothing else, I'm hoping for the return of my Ink & Batter feature with more book inspired decorated cupcakes!

Alyssa: Thank you so much for joining me, Pili! Everyone, go follow this awesome lady! 

Find Pili online!

The Tour Giveaway:

There will be 3 winners. We are giving away $75, $50, and $25 gift cards to the winner's choice of book retailer.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My Giveaway:

This is my BBF giveaway! Open to anyone.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow today's tour posts!

BookCatPin – Surprise Post
The Eater of Books! – Blogger Interview
A Reader Under The Sea – Top 10 Book Bloggers
Effortlessly Reading – Why I Love Being A Blogger

Monday, October 12, 2015

Review: Undeniable by Liz Bankes

Undeniable by Liz Bankes
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Publication Date: November 24, 2015
Rating: 3 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

After Gabi's relationship with her long-time boyfriend Max falls apart, she just needs to get away—and she finds the perfect escape in a summer internship for her favorite TV show in London. All the gorgeous actors in the cast will more than distract her from the Break-Up. 

Then she meets Spencer Black: student, show extra, expert flirt. Spending time with him is fun, intoxicating, and uncertain. Their relationship is heating up when he lands a featured role on the show. Will his newly found fame break them apart, or is Spencer the one?

In this steamy love story, the drama is just as real off-screen as it is on.

What I Liked:

This book was cute. It's pretty rare that I might call a book "cute", but when I do, it's usually about a contemporary novel. This is a light, fluffy contemporary romance novel, with a lot of humor and huge dose of awkward. Gabi is such a unique character, as crazy and awkward as she is. While it's clear that I didn't completely love this book, I'm glad I gave it a shot. Thank you, Bloomsbury, for the review copy!

Gabi just broke up with her boyfriend of three years, Max, about a month ago. Now, for the summer, she's headed off to London for an internship for a TV show that she loves, The Halls. She's only a runner, fetching coffee and whatnot. But at the set, she meets one of the extras, a handsome, flirtatious, and clever guy named Spencer. At first they're just hanging out, but things start to heat up. But is Gabi ready to move on? And is Spencer, an actor, the right guy to move on with?

First I'll talk about Gabi - she is a very different and fresh character in YA. She's so awkward, and she literally says what she is thinking without thinking about it. This really bothered me at first - this girl has NO filter, and never thinks through what she wants to say. But eventually, I either got used to it, or stopped caring. She's hilarious, she's off the charts bats**t crazy, but I can see why people like her. I personally don't think I could handle her though, fyi. She's... difficult. Especially for someone as sarcastic and direct as me (but direct as in I will tell you the truth, even if it insults you. No games.)

So I think I liked Gabi. She has a lot going on - besides breaking up with her boyfriend of three years. They were really close, and had something going on that shocked everyone. And something happened in Gabi's family, and it tilted the axis of Gabi's world. And then she broke up with Max. And now she's in London. So many changes, in a short time!

Spencer is a hot extra on the show. He flirts with everyone, but seems to be interested in Gabi. They hang out, explore London, but then things take a different turn. Gabi initially didn't want to engage in anything with him but... she started to think less about Max when she was with Spencer. Plus, Spencer is a good guy. Nice, charming, handsome, thoughtful.

And then he lands a bigger role in the show, and things start to get a little less honeymoon-y for them. Gabi and Spencer had been keeping their budding relationships under wraps, but now Spencer is telling everyone that he and his character are both single. And he is pushed towards his co-star, Heidi. Gabi brushes off this... until she can't. 

This book actually has two plots going on, in a way. We have everything currently happening, told from Gabi's POV. And then, in italics, pretty much before every new chapter, we have a couple of pages of what happened before Gabi came to London. What happened to Gabi and Max. What happened to Gabi's family. It's slowly revealed, bit by bit, which I think really worked for this story. It was all I could do not to skip ahead and find out exactly what had happened in the past!

I liked the pace of the story, as well as what was happening in the story. Gabi grows as a character as the book goes on, though she is still her awkward, crazy self. The book really centers on Spencer and Gabi's relationship, but it is also a lot about Gabi's breakup with Max, and her close friendships with three other girls.

The ending of this book is... weird. I'm not sure I like it or hate it. I think it has enough closure to be acceptable for a standalone, but I can't help but want more. See below.

What I Did Not Like:

A couple of things bothered me. First - Gabi is a difficult girl to like. Honestly, I hated her in the beginning. She is SO awkward. Like it's borderline vertically challenged. She can't keep her balanced, and she falls out of a train. She has no filter and probably needs a muzzle - I'm not even a little bit kidding. She says things and does NOT think about what she says. It bothers me so much that she doesn't THINK; she just blurts out things. It's endearing to some, but I would probably smack her within five minutes of knowing her. Did I mention that she is awkward? So awkward. I cringed so many times. But I also laughed a lot - laughed at her. It's so funny to laugh at some of the ridiculous things she does and says.

I did like the amount of humor in this book though.

So it was a pretty big thing, to be annoyed with the protagonist for quite a bit of the book. At some point, either I got used to her, or she stopped being *as* annoying. I can safely say that she is a unique character in YA contemporary (which is rare!), but I'm not sure if she's all that likable. You might struggle with her!

The other big thing I didn't like was the ending. Like I said above, the book wraps up and we definitely have an acceptable degree of closure but... it wasn't enough. There were certain things we needed to know specifically about Max and Gabi that we aren't made aware of. I didn't like how fluid the ending was, how fluid Gabi's relationships became. If that makes sense. Hopefully I didn't spoil anything - nothing here is specific. But basically, the ending is a bit vague and not satisfying, though it does wrap up like a standalone should.

The romance wasn't *as* steamy as I'd expected. Sure, there are plenty of mentions of things and actions that COULD be steamy. But nothing is even close to explicit (like, a young adolescent or maybe even MG reader could be fine with this book). I feel a bit misled, because I was thinking that there would be some steamy Katie-McGarry-YA type of romance. Not quite. Again, there are things that could be seen as steamy, but these things are very vaguely alluded to. 

Would I Recommend It:

I can't say I'd recommend this book, because it's not particularly memorable (except maybe Gabi, she is so odd) or lovable. I mean, I liked it (I think), but I didn't love it, and I probably wouldn't tell someone else, "You should totally read this contemporary novel I just read!". There are better contemporary in YA! This one was okay though.


3 stars. On the dot, in the middle. I enjoyed it (for the most part) while reading, but I probably will never reread it. It's possibly that it just wasn't my thing, and someone who isn't bothered by the things that bothered me might LOVE this book. I already know contemporary isn't my favorite genre in YA lit, so there's that! I do try with YA contemporary though.

Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!

USA/CA people - enter to win a copy of this book!

KidLitCon 2015 Recap!

Hey everyone! Today I'm recapping my experience attending KidLitCon, a conference held in Harbor East, Baltimore. KidLitCon started on Friday, October 9th, and ended on Sunday, October 11th. I attended on Saturday, October 10th - and I presented, with the one and only Kathy MacMillan!

So, KidLitCon! Kathy approached me about KidLitCon several months, sometime in the early summer. I'd never heard of this conference, so I was curious! Kathy asked me if I would like to present with her, as she wanted a blogger to be with her. The presentation would be about connecting with debut authors. In August, our spot was confirmed! Saturday, October 10th, 4:00 pm - 4:50 pm. I was excited, nervous, and more excited!

Kathy and I met in September to discuss the presentation, and we worked on it throughout the month. Fast forward to October 10th! Saturday, the big day. I so wanted to attend on Friday, or all-day on Saturday, but I was only able to attend for just my panel. There were some amazing authors in attendance! You can see the full KidLitCon program HERE.

"Connecting with Debut Authors" (our presentation) went really well! I was so nervous but (apparently) I didn't fail utterly at conveying my parts of the presentation, and Kathy was so energetic and awesome! I brought five hardcover YA novels to give away at the end of the panel, which was a huge hit! 

I got to meet Kathy's editor Alexandra, author Anne Boles Levy, blogger Barb (A Book and a Hug), blogger Katy (BooksYALove), and many others. I also got a lovely tote bag, swag, and a bunch of ARCs that Little, Brown, Chronicle Books, and other publishers provided - thank you to everyone, for everything!

Overall, I had a great experience at this event! I would 100% go again (especially if I can actually manage to go for a full day and sit in on other people's panels), and/or present again. A huge thank you to Sheila and Paula for making this event possible, as well as to Kathy, for 

1) asking me to do this (so grateful for the opportunity!), 
2) being so incredibly awesome,and easy to work with, 
3) dealing with my lack of personal transportation issues on more than one occasion,
4) Sword and Verse and all of its awesomeness, and 
5) just about everything that went down on Saturday. YOU ROCK!

My goodies:

Other novels, as well as swag!
Wockenfuss candies 

THANK YOU, Sheila, Paula, Little, Brown, other publishers, authors!

Important Links:

Find Sword and Verse online:

Reviewers - request Sword and Verse from Edelweiss!

Find Kathy MacMillan online!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Science in Fiction (#9): Dark Tide by Jennifer Donnelly

Welcome to this month's Science in Fiction feature! Science in Fiction is a meme I created to showcase the wonderful aspects of science in Young Adult fiction novels. For more information and previous feature, check out the "Science in Fiction" tag!

This month, I'm featuring Dark Tide by Jennifer Donnelly!

Dark Tide is book three of the Waterfire saga, set completely undersea. Donnelly's spin on mermaids is completely unique and refreshing! Serafina and five other mermaids are tied together by a magical connection, and they must find six ancient amulets to stop the threat of destruction, both in the deep ocean, and top-world. In this series, Donnelly makes references to the state of the ocean, in terms of trash and waste and lost shipments.

So today, I'm going to talk about a very specific area in the ocean that is filled with trash -  the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

What is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch?

You can see the "garbage patch" within the red circle. It's unclear exactly how large the Patch is, but it is massive, and very scary. The entire Patch isn't exactly what it sounds like - it isn't simply this island of water bottles and bags and junk. While there are water bottles and plastic (and even fleece jackets?!), the Patch is compromised of a whole bunch of microplastics debris, smack dab in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

The Patch is, in a way, held and maintained where it is, because of ocean currents. There is a Western Garbage Patch and an Eastern Garbage Patch (see National Geographic's pictures), and both are where they are because of wind and waves. According to NOAA, it is entirely possible to ravel through the areas of the Patch and not see any garbage, or feel any debris. But that does not mean the Patch does not exist, or that we shouldn't be concerned about it.

The Western Garbage Patch was formed largely by the debris from the coast of Japan. The Eastern one was formed from the coast of the West Coast of the United States. The waters in these two areas are fairly stationary, and the wave currents keep the debris where they are. Debris can come from ships, docks, storm drains, harbors, etc.

Marine life is heavily affected by the Garbage Patch. Birds choke and die on plastics; organic pollutants clog the water and ecosystems, and these pollutants can kill native species. Invasive species are likely to be introduced in these areas, because of the debris.

It's sad and disheartening and infuriating, to see how human waste is accumulated and dumped. There is no easy solution when it comes to waste, but dumping in the ocean is not one of them. Too much is unbalanced - marine life, bacterial and microbial life, and even human life. 

So, now that I've introduced you to this thoroughly depressing subject: did you know about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch? Thoughts?

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (#146)

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews, in which bloggers share the books and swag they've received in the past week!

So, what did I get in the week of Sunday, October 4th to Saturday, October 10th?

(all links to Goodreads are provided!)

In the mail:

Notebook, luggage tag, leather case

OMG! Disney, you are so wonderful - thank you!


AHHHH! Thank you so much, Tor!

A trade, from Jessica! Thank you!

Unsolicited - thank you, Penguin!

Thank you, Random House!

Thank you, Macmillan! This was a thank-you for participating in the blog tour.

A #NilTribe shirt, and swag

Thank you so much, Lynne!

I haven't read any LK historical romance, so I'm very excited about this! Thank you, Jessie/Avon. :)

I'll update on Saturday night with the rest of the mail! I'll be presenting at KidLitCon with Kathy MacMillan on Saturday afternoon, which should be lots of fun. I'm a tad bit nervous for our panel!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Blog Tour Excerpt and Giveaway: Madame X by Jasinda Wilder

Welcome to the blog tour for Madame X by Jasinda Wilder! I'm so excited to be helping promote this book, and to support Jasinda and Berkley. I posted my review in a separate post below this one, so check that out for my thoughts on this new book. Enjoy!

About the Book:

Madame X by Jasinda Wilder
Book One of the Madame X series
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: October 6, 2015

Official Summary:

My name is Madame X.
I’m the best at what I do.
And you’d do well to follow my rules...

Hired to transform the uncultured, inept sons of the wealthy and powerful into decisive, confident men, Madame X is a master of the art of control. With a single glance she can cut you down to nothing, or make you feel like a king.

But there is only one man who can claim her body—and her soul.

Undone time and again by his exquisite dominance, X craves and fears his desire in equal measure. And while she longs for a different path, X has never known anything or anyone else—until now...

Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | iBooks

About the Author:

Jasinda Wilder is a New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and international bestselling author. She is a Michigan native and currently lives there with her family. Visit her official website at jasindawilder.com.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

The Excerpt:

A knock on the door, the silent swing of hinges, and then heat and hardness behind me, a faint but intoxicating hint of cologne, the creak of leather. Hands on my waist, lips at my neck. Breath on my skin.

I don’t dare tense, don’t dare suck in a sharp breath of fear. I don’t dare pull away.

Strong, hard, powerful hands twist me in place, and an index finger touches my chin, lifts my face, tilts my gaze. I cannot breathe, don’t dare, haven’t been given permission.

“You are lovelier than ever, X.” A deep, smooth, cultured voice, like the purr of a finely tuned engine.

“Thank you, Caleb.” My own voice is quiet, careful, my words chosen and precise.

“Scotch.” The command is a murmur, barely audible.

I know how to prepare it: a cut-crystal tumbler, a single ice cube, thick amber liquid an inch from the top. I offer the tumbler and wait, keep my eyes downcast, hands behind my back.

“You were too harsh on Jonathan.”

“I must respectfully disagree.”

“His father expects results.”

I bristle, and it does not go unnoticed. “Have I ever failed to produce results?”

“You sent him away after less than an hour.”

“He wasn’t ready. He needed to be shown his faults. He needs to understand how much he has to learn.”

“Perhaps you’re right.” Ice clinks, and I take the empty tumbler, set it aside, and force myself to remain in place, force myself to keep breathing and remind myself that I must obey. “I didn’t come here to discuss Jonathan Cartwright, however.”

“I suppose not.” I shouldn’t have said that. I regret it as soon as the words tumble free.

My wrist bones scrape together under a crushing grip. Hard dark eyes find mine, piercing and frightening. “You suppose not?”

I should beg forgiveness, but I know better. I lift my chin and meet those cold, cruel, intelligent dark eyes. “You know I will fulfill the contract. That’s all I meant.”

“No, that isn’t all you meant.” A hand passes through artfully messy black hair. “Tell me what you really meant, X.”

I swallow hard. “You’re here for what you always want when you visit me.”

“Which is?” A warm finger touches my breastbone, slides into the valley of my cleavage. “Tell me what I want.”

“Me.” I whisper it, so not even the walls can hear.

“All too true.” My skin burns where that strong finger with its manicured nail traces a cutting line up to my shoulder. “You test my patience, at times.”

I stand stock-still, not even breathing. Breath whispers across my neck, huffs hot on my nape, and fingers toy with the zipper of my dress.

“I know,” I say.

And then, just when I expect to feel the zipper slide down my spine, body heat recedes and that hot breath now laced with hints of scotch is gone, and a single word sears my soul:


My tongue scrapes over dry lips, and my lungs constrict, protesting my inability to breathe. My hands tremble. I know this is expected of me, and I cannot, dare not resist, or protest. And . . . part of me doesn’t want to. But I wish . . . I wish for the freedom to choose what I want.

I have hesitated too long.
“X. I said . . . strip.” The zipper slides down to between my shoulder blades. “Show me your skin.”

Reaching behind my back, I lower the zipper to its nesting place at the base of my spine. Hard, insistent hands assist me in brushing the sleeves from my shoulders, down my arms, and then the dress is floating to the floor at my feet. That’s all the help I’ll get. I know from long experience that I must make a show of what comes next.

I turn my head, and see tanned skin and the perpetual two-day stubble on a refined, powerful jawline, sharp cheekbones, firm, thin lips, black eyes like voids, eyes that drip desire. My hair drapes over one shoulder. I lift one knee so my now-bare toes touch the gleaming teak, curl my shoulders in, let my gaze show my vulnerability. With a deep breath, I unhook my bra, let the garment fall away.

I reach for my underwear.

“No,” comes the purr, “leave them. Let me.”

I let my fingers graze my thighs, wait. My underwear slides down slowly, and where fingers touch, so too do lips, hot and damp, touching my skin, and I cannot flinch, cannot pull away or express how badly I want only to be alone, to even once have the right to want something else.

But I do not have that right.

The Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway