Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Jersey Six by Jewel E. Ann is available now and it’s FREE for Kindle Unlimited subscribers! This is absolutely one of my favorite reads of 2019. I was completely blown away by this story. Keep reading for the description, an excerpt and my review – plus a link to enter a bundle giveaway!
Thank you to Social Butterfly PR and author Jewel E. Ann for sending me a review copy in exchange for an honest review as well as an invitation to join the blog tour.
How far would you go for revenge?
A hit-and-run accident leaves Jersey Six orphaned and homeless on the streets of Newark, shattering her dreams of school dances, pink nail polish, and a diploma.
Eight years later, a burn victim with amnesia wanders into Jersey’s barely-existent life. She resists his efforts to form a friendship until he reveals knowledge of the person responsible for derailing her future. Through their unusual friendship, she discovers a way to avenge the deaths of her foster parents.
All she has to do is destroy the world’s biggest rock star.
In the ultimate game of sex, lies, and manipulation, can Jersey discover the truth? Or will she be blinded by attraction, deceived by love, and destroyed by her past?
“We ate at the hotel.” Her lips twisted to the side. “Mind if I stick some stuff in my bag for later?”
A tiny wrinkle formed between Ian’s eyes, just below the long sweep of his black bangs. “There will be lots of food available later too. But…” he shrugged, leaning forward and resting his elbows on his knees “…take whatever you want.”
Jersey glanced over her shoulder at the food and the three other men in the room. She decided to wait a little while before shoving as much as possible into her bag like a free-for-all. “Thanks.” Jersey returned her attention to Ian. “So … you’re a singer. Like … are you a big deal?”
Every word she spoke seemed to feed his level of happiness. “Well …” He rubbed his chin, twisting his lips. “We play music. People like to listen to our music. But no … it’s not a big deal. We’re not saving lives or anything like that.”
She eyed him with suspicion for a few seconds. That smile of his didn’t feel worthy of complete trust. “Um … what exactly do you need me to do? What’s my job? They already took Chris. Will that big, bearded guy come for me too?” Jersey couldn’t remember his name.
“No.” Ian stood, pushing his elbows out from his shoulders, twisting side to side. “Tonight you are just going to watch the concert from backstage. Tomorrow night you’ll sell merchandise.”
“Drugs. You mean drugs, don’t you?”
Ian paused his stretching, letting his arms fall limp to his sides. “Merchandise—T-shirts, posters, keychains, phone cases, hats, guitar pics …”
“Fans.” Ian grinned. “Okay. I might have understated all of this to you … can you name a famous singer? Old or new. Doesn’t matter. Just a famous singer.”
“I had a foster parent who used to listen to Josh Groban.” Jersey gnashed her teeth, still feeling so much anger. Dena wasn’t just a foster parent; she was Jersey’s friend.
“Okay. Well, Josh has sold millions of records, and he’s a huge star in his genre of music. Thousands of people pack venues all over the world to see him sing live in concert. And they sell merchandise of his at those concerts.”
Jersey gazed unblinkingly at Ian as he scratched his jaw.
“Well, I sing a different genre of music, but I, too, travel the world, singing to sold-out concert venues, andI have people who sell my merchandise at these concerts.”
Jersey dropped her bag to her feet and planted her fists on her hips. “Listen, Coop. Stop talking down to me. I’m not an idiot. I know what a concert is. But earlier today you didn’t say what you did or what the job was you were offering. You bought a homeless person a hot dog and offered her a job. Of course, I’m going to think something sketchy might be involved.”
Tipping her chin up, she held her breath to puff out her chest, pretending the recent revelation of Ian Cooper being a famous singer didn’t faze her one bit. Inside, Jersey’s heart hammered into her ribcage, and her mind reeled trying to figure out the day’s events.
“Coop?” His lips twitched into a tiny grin.
“It’s short for Cooper.”
“Clearly.” Ian chuckled. “But my name is Ian. Everyone calls me Ian.”
“I busted the nose and jaw of a kid named Ian. He tried to stick his cock in my ass. I’ll call you Tom, Dick, or Harry, but I’m not calling you Ian because that makes me want to physically harm you.”
Ian’s eyebrows shot up his forehead as his head whipped back a few inches. “Coop it is.”
Enter Jewel’s giveaway for a signed paperback and swag!
Jersey sucked at subtle. She sucked at a lot of things, like patience, restraint, kind words and giving a shit.
This book was visceral and mind bending and just downright AMAZING.
I absolutely adore Jewel E. Ann’s writing, characters and stories and this one levels the playing field. It has the unwavering grit of her Jack & Jill series, the desperate and unyielding romance of Undeniably You and the absolutely mind blowing suspense of Transcend and Epoch.
I knew, I just KNEW about a quarter of the way into this book that it would wreck me. I was coming to love a character I should hate and not really sure why I should hate them. I was coming to distrust a character I loved and couldn’t make sense of how JEA was totally throwing my mind of kilter.
Truth didn’t live in the light; it hid in the dark, dancing with demons, afraid to be set free, afraid to be seen by judgmental eyes.
This book touches on SO many tough and authentic subjects such as homelessness, PTSD and mental illness, sexual abuse, physical and mental abuse, trauma, abandonment, amnesia and JEA does it well. So freaking well.
The relationship that develops between Jersey and Chris, their cohabitation and friendship was so genuine and touching. I really enjoyed the portrayal of their mutual dependence upon each other and how they found safe company in each other.
And Ian … well, he looked at her like he understood her, even though there was no way he had an inkling what her life was really like. He felt like the day to her night and a promise on the distant horizon.
Then Ian enters their lives and their whole world is ripped away while the world itself is handed to them on a silver platter. Jersey’s life with Ian is tumultuous and confusing at times. They crash together like waves breaking upon a cliff. Both molding each other into what comes next and unable to stop the rolling of the tide. I was intrigued, I was appalled, I was in their clutches and then I was shocked. I loved how messy and beautifully their relationship blossomed and their feelings developed. I could feel the desperation behind their moments together.
The big revelations in this truly shocked me. I had one of them guessed around 50% … but that’s not saying much because I was still thinking to myself, “If this ends up being true, this is CRAZY.” Well let me tell you folks, it was true and then the crazy train just kept on barreling down on me. The next plot twist came and knocked me off my feet. A true mind bender. And it all made sense. It made perfect sense.
Forever doesn’t exist. It’s just what people tell themselves to make the now a little more bearable.
Jersey has secrets we know and an insatiable desire for revenge. Ian is holding something back that he knows will change the way Jersey looks at him forever. Perhaps she will never wish to look at him again for the crimes he’s committed.
Overall, this one definitely ties with Undeniably You for my favorite JEA book and that’s saying a lot, because I feel very strongly about that book and the fact it made me cry for basically the last half of it. 😂 I highly, highly recommend this book if you enjoy romance in the vein of Colleen Hoover. I haven’t seen anyone write such emotional and gripping but romantic stories as her and Jewel E. Ann.
“Wish me luck, Jersey.”
I also have never read a “rock star” romance because I felt as though it wouldn’t be my cup of tea but I feel like I could definitely jump upon the bandwagon now. 😂
SPOILER, but I have to say it: And Chris – omg Chris – his character became so manipulative and such a driving force behind Jersey’s actions. I was like, “Who is this guy and where did our friend go?” He became so toxic, but I really loved the way JEA portrayed his arc and the influence he had on Jersey. His personality change versus Ian’s personality were exactly how I guessed the plot twist regarding Chris – though I did not anticipate the story of what actually happened to him. I loved this twist though, it was great.
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Release Date: June 13th, 2019
Amazon | Book Depository | IndieBound