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Review:Neurotica

From Goodreads: If you find yourself talking to Jayne Dandy, keep the conversation on Star Wars and rubber ducks—best not to mention men, dating, or S-E-X. Because Jayne is fine with the way things are: writer of obituaries and garage sale ads by day, secret scribe of adventures in distant galaxies by night. But her crippling fear of intimacy has made her the butt of jokes since forever, and hiding behind her laptop isn’t going to get her lightsaber lit.

After her therapist recommends that she write erotica as a form of exposure therapy, Jayne joins forces with pen and paper to combat the demons that won’t let her kiss and tell. Unexpectedly downsized at work, she adopts a pseudonym and secretly self-publishes one of her naughty books to make ends meet. When her adorable, long-time friend Luke, co-owner of the popular Portland food truck Luke Piewalker’s, hears she’s been demoted, he insists on hiring her to sling éclairs and turnovers at his side. Her secret must be kept, but sparks ignite between them, sending Jayne and her X-Wing into a tailspin that will either make her face down her neuroses or trigger a meltdown of Death Star proportions.

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This novel is absolutely amazing, giving readers an in-depth look at the indie publishing world through the eyes of Jayne, a young woman who struggles with intimacy.  Jayne, better known to her readers as Jaina Jacen, is an intriguing character who innocently enough begins a maelstrom when her erotica books take off in the ebook world–a feat Jayne never imagined, nor wanted.  Published under a pseudonym and only in hopes of making ends meet, Jayne’s world is turned upside down when the demand for more, including public appearances and signings, become a reality she cannot ignore.  But these books were never supposed to hit it big, and no one is supposed to know her true identity, especially not her family nor Luke, the friend who is really interested in so much more.  This conundrum adds much humor to the novel as it takes off, and Gordon’s writing style kept me captivated from the very beginning.  Jayne is such a sweet, shy character, and watching her try to dodge all romance, while in the throes of writing and publishing erotica behind closed doors, makes for a great read, perhaps more so because it’s 100% clean.

Though I am indeed a prude and dislike heavy sex in my novels, I have to admit that Gordon MADE me WANT to read Jayne’s fictional books just to know what all the hubbub was about throughout this enticing story.  Gordon really does an amazing job keeping readers on edge, snickering, and in love with all the characters as this humorous story unfolds, making it a must read. Especially as Luke is such a great guy.  And perhaps my favorite part is that it’s completely clean. While Jayne does write erotica, Gorgon keeps this NA novel PG, which is exactly where it needs to be to get the point across.

If you’re looking for a hilarious, clean, introspective read, then look no further that Neurotica.  Five stars.

5 stars
I received this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.
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Top Ten Movie Scores for Jayne (aka. Jaina Jacen) While Writing:

One way Jayne Dandy deals with the complexities of Life and Related Topics is through her love of writing. (What a *novel* idea!) Though she starts out penning stories in the sci-fi/fantasy realm, her therapist encourages her to try a little erotica to help her work through her intimacy issues. Think of it as exposure therapy, as in, write us a story about naked bits and the people attached to them! But when circumstances of the unemployed type dictate that Jayne find a new way to pay the rent, she decides that sending her naughty stories out into the Big Bad World to earn their keep just might work.

Like many writers, Jayne relies on auditory inspiration—music! What would her playlist look like? Well, if Jayne is anything like me (and I dare say she might be, at least atiny bit), she listens to movie scores. Because lyrics, while awesome, make a writer stop and sing and possibly dance. (I’ve been known to dance while writing. Which means no writing gets done. Just a lot of embarrassment, especially if the windows are open and the neighbors can see in.Although last time I put an open guitar case on the lawn and made $4.85. Groove on, baby!)

The following is a list of five fantastic movie scores with romantic overtones that Jayne—or, I mean, Jaina Jacen—might have listened to while breathing life into her erotic novels:

Pride and Prejudice, Jean-Yves Thibaudet

Leap Year, Randy Edelman

Winter’s Tale, Hans Zimmer and Rupert Gregson-Williams

Romeo and Juliet, Abel Korzeniowski

Twilight Saga: New Moon, Alexandre Desplat

And what about when she’s writing her sci-fi stuff? This list could go on and on. Here are Jayne’s ten favorites:

Man of Steel, Hans Zimmer

Guardians of the Galaxy, Tyler Bates

Godzilla, Alexandre Desplat

Inception, Hans Zimmer

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, Jesper Kyd and Lorne Balfe(Never underestimate the awesomeness of video game scores!)

Divergent, Junkie XL

Captain America: Winter Soldier, Henry Jackman

Thor: The Dark World, Brian Tyler

The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, Howard Shore

The Hunger Games and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, James Newton Howard

I LOVE movie scores because they are already a story all their own. Often I purchase movie scores without seeing the films they belong to as then the music molds to whatever I have going on in my own head, in my own fantasy worlds—I dare say Miss Jayne thinks along those same lines. There’s nothing like a heart-slamming chase scene or face-melting love scene done in music to really get those creative juices flowing. And when writing her erotica, Jayne Dandy needs all the creative juices she can get.

Happy reading!

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Eliza Gordon

About the Author:

A purveyor of fictions, Eliza Gordon has excellent taste in books, shoes, movies, and friends, and questionable sanity in the realm of love. Best leave that one alone. www.elizagordon.com

Connect:

Website |  Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Giveaway:

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway Here!



NEUROTICA

Neurotica

by Eliza Gordon

Expected publication: August 2014

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If you find yourself talking to Jayne Dandy, keep the conversation on Star Wars and rubber ducks—best not to mention men, dating, or S-E-X. Because Jayne is fine with the way things are: writer of obituaries and garage sale ads by day, secret scribe of adventures in distant galaxies by night. But her crippling fear of intimacy has made her the butt of jokes since forever, and hiding behind her laptop isn’t going to get her lightsaber lit.

After her therapist recommends that she write erotica as a form of exposure therapy, Jayne joins forces with pen and paper to combat the demons that won’t let her kiss and tell. Unexpectedly downsized at work, she adopts a pseudonym and secretly self-publishes one of her naughty books to make ends meet. When her adorable, long-time friend Luke, co-owner of the popular Portland food truck Luke Piewalker’s, hears she’s been demoted, he insists on hiring her to sling éclairs and turnovers at his side. Her secret must be kept, but sparks ignite between them, sending Jayne and her X-Wing into a tailspin that will either make her face down her neuroses or trigger a meltdown of Death Star proportions.

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unnamedELIZA BIO (June 2014):

A purveyor of fictions, Eliza Gordon has excellent taste in books, shoes, movies, and friends, and questionable sanity in the realm of love. Best leave that one alone.

www.elizagordon.com

 

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GIVEAWAY

For a chance to win $15 GC or an ebooks of Must Love Otters, click this Rafflecopter Link!



Every Saturday I run a feature for the 99 Cent Club, and below are the ebook picks for this week that caught my eye and are currently ONLY 99 Cents on Amazon, with most on Barnes and Noble as well. I don’t know if these are permanent prices, so please don’t shoot the messenger, and double check pricing before pressing the buy button. Enjoy! (If you could help give these authors some love by spreading the word, that would be epic.)

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Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000026_00015]Whispers and Wishes by Hollie Westring

Eliza Monroe has been traveling the United States for three years, immersing herself in the towns she visits as she searches for the mother she’s never known. She hopes returning to her grandmother’s inn in Sage Springs, Mo., will provide the break she needs to evaluate her lonely life.

What Eliza isn’t expecting is to have two men enter the picture, not making her decision to stay or leave any easier. One has been her foundation, while the other is as comfortable as she is hopping from city to city. Throw in a kooky grandmother, a cheerful best friend, a sarcastic guest, a town where residents and spirits interact like neighbors, and Eliza has little time to contemplate her future.

Friendships grow, webs are spun and lies are revealed before Eliza comes to terms with what she wants in life and learns what’s really important.

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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Must Love OttersMust Love Otters by Eliza Gordon

Hollie Porter is the chairwoman of Generation Disillusioned: at twenty-five years old, she’s saddled with a job she hates, a boyfriend who’s all wrong for her, and a vexing inability to say no. She’s already near her breaking point, so when one caller too many kicks the bucket during Hollie’s 911 shift, she cashes in the Sweethearts’ Spa & Stay gift certificate from her dad and heads to Revelation Cove, British Columbia. One caveat: she’s going solo. Any sweethearts will have to be found on site.

Hollie hopes to find her beloved otters in the wilds of the Great White North, but instead she’s providing comic relief for staff and guests alike. Even Concierge Ryan, a former NHL star with bad knees and broken dreams, can’t stop her from stumbling from one (mis)adventure to another. Just when Hollie starts to think that a change of venue doesn’t mean a change in circumstances, the island works its charm and she starts to think she might have found the rejuvenation she so desperately desires. But then an uninvited guest crashes the party, forcing her to step out of the discomfort zone where she dwells and save the day … and maybe even herself in the process.

Find it on Amazon.

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River in the SeaRiver in the Sea by Tina Boscha

At fifteen, Leen De Graaf likes everything she shouldn’t: smoking cigarettes, wearing red lipstick, driving illegally, and working in the fields. It seems the only thing she shares with her fellow Dutchmen is a fear of the German soldiers stationed nearby and a frantic wish for the war to end. When a soldier’s dog runs in front of Leen’s truck, her split-second reaction sets off a storm of events that pitches her family against the German forces when they are most desperate – and fierce.

Leen tries to hold her family together, but despite her efforts, bit by bit everything falls apart, and just when Leen experiences a horrific loss, she must make a decision that could forever brand her a traitor, yet finally allows her to live as her heart desires. Inspired by the life of the author’s mother, River in the Sea is a powerful and moving account of one girl reaching adulthood when everything she believes about family, friendship, and loyalty is questioned by war.

Find it on Amazon.

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Promise Me ForeverPromise Me Forever by Sarah Ashley Jones

THIS IS A FOLLOW UP NOVELLA TO PROMISE ME THIS.

Charlie Jennings and Jhett Hudson knew that a single moment could change everything.

It took them one song to find each other, one question to give them a chance, one kiss to fall in love, and one night to almost lose it all. But they had one thing other couples lack – pure, unconditional love – and that takes more than a moment to walk away from.

Falling in love is only the beginning. Forever is what happens next.

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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If OnlyIf Only by A.J. Pine

Sometimes it takes crossing an ocean to figure out where you belong.

It’s been two years since twenty-year-old Jordan had a boyfriend—which means it’s been forever since she, well, you know. But now she’s off to spend her junior year in Aberdeen, Scotland, the perfect place to stop waiting for Mr. Right and just enjoy Mr. Right Now.

Sexy, sweet (and possible player) Griffin may be her perfect, no-strings-attached match. He’s fun, gorgeous, and makes her laugh. So why can’t she stop thinking about Noah who, minutes after being trapped together outside the train’s loo, kisses Jordan like she’s never been kissed before? Never mind his impossible blue eyes, his weathered, annotated copy of The Great Gatsby (total English-major porn)…oh, and his girlfriend.

Jordan knows everything this year has an expiration date. Aberdeen is supposed to be about fun rather than waiting for life to happen. But E. M. Forster, Shakespeare, and mistletoe on Valentine’s Day make her reconsider what love is and how far she’s willing to go for the right guy.

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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Trouble Comes KnockingTrouble Comes Knocking by Mary Duncanson

It’s hard not to answer when trouble comes knocking.

A girl who can’t forget…

Twenty-two-year-old Lucy Carver is like Sherlock Holmes in ballet flats, but her eidetic memory is more albatross than asset, and something she usually keeps hidden. When she notices that something’s amiss at her dead-end job, she jumps at the chance to finally use her ability for good. That is, until, a man is murdered, and she becomes the target of the killer.

A detective on his first case…

Detective Eli Reyes is overbearing, pompous, way too hot for Lucy’s own good, and seems as determined to ruin her relationship with her boyfriend, John, as finding the murderer. He brings Lucy in on the case, thinking she can help him get to the truth, only to cut her loose when he realizes he’s gotten far more than he ever bargained for.

A past that won’t go away…

When memories from her childhood invade her present, Lucy discovers a mystery bigger than she could have imagined. With the killer still after her, and Eli nowhere to be found, she takes things into her own hands, determined to expose the truth no matter what—before trouble comes knocking…again.

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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Full MeasuresFull Measures by Rebecca Yarros

Three knocks can change everything…

“She knew. That’s why Mom hadn’t opened the door. She knew he was dead.”

Twenty years as an army brat and Ember Howard knew, too. The soldiers at the door meant her dad was never coming home. What she didn’t know was how she would find the strength to singlehandedly care for her crumbling family when her mom falls apart.

Then Josh Walker enters her life. Hockey star, her new next-door neighbor, and not to mention the most delicious hands that insist on saving her over and over again. He has a way of erasing the pain with a single look, a single touch. As much as she wants to turn off her feelings and endure the heartache on her own, she can’t deny their intense attraction.

Until Josh’s secret shatters their world. And Ember must decide if he’s worth the risk that comes with loving a man who could strip her bare.

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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CagedUncaged by Harper Sloan

Greg Cage’s life is more fulfilling than he ever could have imagined. He’s married to the love of his life, has an amazing son, and in a few short months, his family will grow again with the birth of his twin girls.

The past year has been a tough one for the Cage family, but they are now on the road to healing by learning to let go of the past and looking forward to their future.

When situations beyond his control threaten to take away so much of what Greg holds close to his heart, he has to learn that he doesn’t always have the control he tries to maintain in their lives. Will he be able to handle the stress of knowing his wife and newborn daughters are beyond his protection?

Join the Cage family as they embark on yet another one of life’s journeys with a rambunctious four-year-old, pregnancy complications, and the fear of the unknown.

Will the love that Greg and Melissa share hold true as they fight to overcome the obstacles that face them?

UNCAGED is not a standalone. It is a continuation of CAGE. It is recommended that you read the first 3 books in the series before UNCAGED.

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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This Time AroundThis Time Around by Ellie Grace

Nora Montgomery left home and heartbreak behind in South Carolina when she moved to New York City after her high school graduation. Now, four years later, she returns home and is forced to confront the past she left behind and the reckless boy who broke her heart. It’s not long before the pieces of her past begin to blur with the present and she realizes that the feelings she had for her first love never really went away. As old dreams resurface and new truths come to light, she begins to question the future she’s always planned on.

Jake Harris has spent four years regretting the night he let her get away. When she finally reappears in his life, he is determined to win her back and prove how much he’s changed. She might never forgive him for that night, but if he tells her the truth about what really happened it will shatter the world she thought she knew. If he doesn’t, he might not get a second chance. He’s already lost her once and he won’t lose her again.

They come from two different worlds that are threatening to tear them apart…can they make it this time around?

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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Tragically FlawedTragically Flawed by A.M. Hargrove

Riviera Benson’s past has been nothing but horrific. It’s filled with secrets that she intends to keep tightly locked away…terrifying secrets that keep her awake at night…that prevent her from getting close to anyone…anyone that is, until her work as a muralist drives her into the arms of the hot and sexy Shan.

Benjamin Shandon, owner of Shandon Homes, works like a thousand demons are chasing him…because perhaps they are. His business has boomed, ever since the forest fire swept through the canyon and destroyed hundreds of million dollar homes. He demands excellence in everything…from his employees to his women. He slows down for nothing, keeping a schedule that no sane person would want. But Riviera interrupts everything, twisting his guts inside out, and wedging her way into his heart, destroying a promise he made to himself.

Will they let their pasts control their future, or will they decide to let go and allow their hearts to discover each other’s?

* This is a New Adult Contemporary Romance with Mature content that is not suitable for younger readers.

**This is a Stand Alone Companion Novel to Tragic Desires.

Find it on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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99 Cent club

If you could help give these authors some love by spreading the word, that would be epic.

For more information about books on sale throughout the week, as well as giveaway updates, be sure to like A Book Vacation’s Facebook Page.



18715353From Goodreads: Hollie Porter is the chairwoman of Generation Disillusioned: at twenty-five years old, she’s saddled with a job she hates, a boyfriend who’s all wrong for her, and a vexing inability to say no. She’s already near her breaking point, so when one caller too many kicks the bucket during Hollie’s 911 shift, she cashes in the Sweethearts’ Spa & Stay gift certificate from her dad and heads to Revelation Cove, British Columbia. One caveat: she’s going solo. Any sweethearts will have to be found on site.

Hollie hopes to find her beloved otters in the wilds of the Great White North, but instead she’s providing comic relief for staff and guests alike. Even Concierge Ryan, a former NHL star with bad knees and broken dreams, can’t stop her from stumbling from one (mis)adventure to another. Just when Hollie starts to think that a change of venue doesn’t mean a change in circumstances, the island works its charm and she starts to think she might have found the rejuvenation she so desperately desires. But then an uninvited guest crashes the party, forcing her to step out of the discomfort zone where she dwells and save the day … and maybe even herself in the process.

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If you’re looking for a feel good comedy full of snarky inner monologue and laugh out loud situations, then look no further than Eliza Gordon’s amazing debut novel, Must Love Otters.  This comedic women’s fiction/humor novel will leave you in stiches as Hollie Porter’s life spins hilariously out of control, gluing you to the pages as Hollie stumbles from one amusing mishap to the next.  Though the initial circumstances are almost tragic—breaking up with her boyfriend of two years and having to go on a romantic getaway solo—Hollie’s thought process and revelations about life make it a hysterical look at life and its many lemons.

While I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and its entertaining look at life, I found that the story really took off for me once Hollie left home to go on holiday in Revelation Cove, British Columbia.  Here we begin to see a different side of Hollie, away from the job she hates, the ogre lady on the first floor, and the boyfriend from hell.  Finally, Hollie can let loose, but in the process she goes from one hilarious calamity to the next; from accidentally streaking to ending up oarless in the middle of the ocean, Hollie’s outlook on life is about to drastically change thanks to the lovely Concierge Ryan.

Gordon has a gift with words, gluing readers to the pages as this story unfolds, offering readers multiple laugh-out-loud moments as Hollie attempts to make sense of her life.  From a catastrophic nacho incident to an evil, territorial goat, the events that unfold will keep you snickering late into the night with this unputdownable read. Four and a half stars.

 4.5 stars

 Eliza Gordon is the pen name for the wife-husband duo, Jennifer Sommersby, author of Sleight, and her husband, Gary.

I received this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.



et cetera
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