Posts Tagged ‘ugly duckling trope’

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This one’s penned by a guy. A GUY.

You know, Rock Fiction might be one of the few areas where men authors are scarce. Think they’re too busy making music and the fantasy to actually write about it?

Catherine Summer Carlson knows how to manage bands like a professional – she’s a student at the PopArts Academy at Mount Hope High, where rock legends Allegiance to North got their start. The never-skipping-class Catherine part of her knows, though, that falling for the lead singer of her latest band is the least professional thing a manager can do. But Caleb Daniels isn’t an ordinary band boy – he’s a hot, dreamy, sweet-singing, exiled-from-his-old-band, possibly-with-a-deep-dark-side band boy. And he can do that thing. That thing when someone sings a song and it inhabits you, possesses you, and moves you like a marionette to its will.

Over tacos on lunch dates to far-off outlet-mall planets and during practices at the Hive with their new band, Dangerheart, Catherine – no, Summer – falls in love with Caleb.

She also finds herself at the center of a mystery she never saw coming. When Caleb reveals a secret about his long-lost father, one band’s past becomes another’s present, and Summer finds it harder and harder to be both band manager and girlfriend. She knows what the well-mannered Catherine side of her would do, but she also knows what her heart is telling her. Maybe it’s time to accept who she really is, even if it means becoming an exile herself…

Kevin Emerson’s Exile is a witty and passionate ode to love, rock and roll, and the freedom that comes in the moment when somebody believes in you, even if you’re not quite ready to believe in yourself.

Yeah, yeah, here we go again. The manager falls for the guy in the band she’s managing. REAL professional there, sweetheart.

I need a break from this one, but it seems that authors are still feeling it. I get it: it’s easy. It’s convenient. It’s a way to get them in the same orbit and make it believable. Except… it kind of isn’t. Because professionalism.

And then we have a bit of an ugly duckling story mixed in, too, and those, I like. So for that, bring it. But enough with the unprofessional managers already.

Band managers everywhere are plotting a revolt, you know. They’re offended that they keep getting portrayed as only there to screw the band because let’s face it: no matter how they deny it, that’s what they are doing there.

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First in a series alert!

How do you cope when the people you care for hurt you the most? When the way you feel on the outside, smothers you on the inside. And when you are left to face your demons alone, will you learn that only you have the power to overcome them?

Charlie has never had it easy. Between the constant moving and the incessant fat comments and jokes from her father, her self-worth is nonexistent. Her reflection in the mirror shows her nothing but a plain Jane. Music is the only thing that keeps her sanity in check.

Charlie catches the eye of the town star quarterback, Maverick. With her curves, her brunette hair, and the voice of an angel, Maverick has never met anyone like her. Everything that is different about Charlie just makes Maverick like her more. Unfortunately, Charlie doesn’t see it herself.

Proving it to her may deem harder than he thinks, especially when tragedy strikes and tears them apart.

Now standing on her own two feet she may finally learn exactly who she is, what’s she’s capable of and how very un plain Jane she really is.

So maybe this is more about coming into your own than Rock Fiction. Hard to tell; I think it comes down to how much salvation music plays in Charlie’s life.

Bring it! Let’s see for ourselves… does this make the cut?

I sure hope so, and not just because the series seems to come back around and focus, in the third book, on Charlie and her best friend (the subject of Book Two) starting a duo.

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On the Goodreads page for the series, there’s a whole introduction! Look!

The four men who make up the rock band, Wicked, the hottest act to hit the scene in years, have earned their wicked status without much help. They’re bad, sinfully delicious, and a temptation to every woman they meet.

Gearing up for a worldwide tour, the guys are about to come face to face with the only women strong enough to tame them. But it’ll take more than a few smooth words to win the hearts of these ladies. When you can have any woman you want, how do you convince the one you can’t live without her?

Okay, I know. It doesn’t say a heck of a lot… except it does. The series is about how each man finds his woman. That says romance, it says fun, it says… well, it says it’s kinda typical, but sometimes, typical is good. There’s something about this that has energy and makes me want to read.

Take the first book, and ignore the bad comma in front of the band name (Susan pointed it out. She said it makes her sad, but even worse, a friend did it in an article the other day and she’s sad. Everyone, send Susan chocolate to shut her up cheer her up.)

Devin Shaw, front man for the band, Wicked, is forced into seclusion by his manager after his destructive behavior almost destroys the band. Sent to a remote cabin alone isn’t Devin’s idea of fun, but to save his career, he’ll do what it takes.

Holly Baker, escaping the hassles of her big city life, arrives in the mountains of Tennessee and awaits the arrival of her friend, Roxy, to start their two-week vacation. Their plans change drastically when Roxy is called away at the last minute, leaving Holly to fend for herself.

Devin and Holly’s worlds collide when a mix up strands them in the same cabin. Alone with nothing but each other for companionship, how will Holly react when she realizes she’s trapped with none other than the hottest lead singer the country has seen in years? Will Devin be able to work with a constant distraction the pretty brunette offers? Or will the two discover that sometimes temptation is a wicked dessert best served hot!

Okay, we’re going to ignore the whole, “You’re my cash cow, man, so I’m sending your self-destructive ass all alone, by itself, to an isolated cabin and don’t die or burn it down or anything else that’s dumb.” Why be realistic when there’s love at stake?

Yeah, okay. Maybe we’re NOT going to ignore it. Instead, join me in hoping the manager (who I really hope isn’t on the road full-time) has someone covertly looking in.

There are four books in the series, so let’s look at the second book, Leather and Lace. It’s description also gave Susan fits — apparently, it goes from present to past. I got a bigger issue, though.

Roxy Carlisle is on a mission. She’s been in lust with Luke Harris, lead guitarist for the band Wicked, for two years. When her best friend, Holly, hooks up with the bands lead singer, and asks her to tag along to New York with her to meet the band, Roxy couldn’t pack her bags fast enough. The chance to meet Luke in person was a dream come true. Even better if her ultimate fantasy of finding herself in his bed were to happen. One way or another, she was determined to have him. That is, if Holly’s hair-brained idea of playing hard to get doesn’t backfire in her face.

Luke Harris loves women and they love him. All he ever has to do is speak to them and they fall all over themselves to be the lucky lady of the night. That all changes though when a feisty brunette comes barreling into his life and changes all the rules. She’s immune to his usual charm, or so it seems, but something in her eyes tells him otherwise.

Has Luke finally met a woman he can’t seduce? Can Roxy follow her plan and not give in when Luke sets his sights on her? When sex is all you’re after, can you walk away when your heart demands more?

Know what the issue is? Been here, done that.

But the third book… oh, the third book turns a familiar trope on its head in a good way, the way I am hoping the second book does, too.

It’s the Ugly Ducking, and the rocker’s the duck.

Come ON. You gotta love this! How often do we see a rocker who’s NOT the be-all, end-all? Yeah, we’ll see the shy guy and yeah, he’s usually the bass player, but THIS bad?

LOVE it. I want more.

Which is the last in the series, Sweet Temptation.

Mick Sheppard, drummer for the band Wicked, has sworn off women after his whirlwind romance with a fan cost him thousands in legal fees and a years worth of gossip in every trash magazine known to man. So, imagine his surprise when he wakes from an alcohol induced haze in Vegas, hung over, and married to a woman he knows next to nothing about.

Faith Weston is your typical good girl. Or so her father thinks. The daughter of a minister, she’s lived her life on the straight and narrow. A trip to Sin City brings reality to a screeching halt when she discovers her week of reckless abandon has left her married to a rock star. One of the bad boys her father warned her about.

Will Mick and Faith find a way out of their drunk-induced marriage or will they both discover some things were just meant to be? When love is the last thing you’re looking for, how do you turn your back on it when it finally finds you?

And let’s all give a heavy sigh. Back to the tried and true. This one is actually pretty familiar in romance novels, and it’s always the bad guy and the good girl. I do really like that this guy’s been seriously burned by some groupie/fan/random chick who wasn’t in it for the sex but for what she could get after.

So… mixed bag here, but I think (barring the typos in the book descriptions) there’s enough promise that my initial excitement hasn’t faded yet. This is a must-read series for Jett. How about it? Anyone got a copy a girl can read and review? Anyone got a review or two they’d like to see get posted?