Posts Tagged ‘different’

On the one hand, this one is off the beaten path for Rock Fiction, so that rules. But is it too much like Chick Lit in its heyday to be unique and different?

Single. Inept at flirting. But at least she’s got talent and a sense of humor. The problem is, she’s often the punch line. Despite her difficulties, Ellen Blum is proud of the cred she has earned serenading brides down the aisle with her harp. Doesn’t being 27 and paying her rent on time prove she’s a grown-up?

Not so much, according to her personal chorus of critics. As she dodges the barbs and petty crimes of her bosses and copes with a family crisis, she feels more like a child than ever. She has her heart set on silencing her critics and teaching them — and maybe herself — a new tune. But becoming more than the person described on her business card is even trickier than moving her harp.

Either way, this sounds like fun, and I’m always up for fun. I’m definitely always up for Rock Fiction being used in different styles of writing and subjects, so it’s kinda nice to take a break from all that romance to let Ellen find herself. Because let’s face it: romance goes a lot better when we know who we are before we start looking for a good person to love.



I’ll own it: when I was younger, I thought the most romantic thing in the world would be to have a song written about me. And then I learned the stories behind certain songs and… yeah. That ended fast.

But that’s the premise here, in Audrey, Wait! See?

Everybody’s singing, “Audrey, Wait!”

Audrey Cuttler’s life hasn’t been the same since that song, “Audrey, Wait!” hit the airwaves. All she wants to do is go to concerts, hang out with her friends, and maybe score a date with the cute boy who works with her at the Scooper Dooper.

But now, her ex-boyfriend’s song about their breakup is at the top of the charts and she’s suddenly famous! The paparazzi won’t leave her alone, the tabloids are trying to make her into some kind of rock goddess, and the Internet is documenting her every move!

Will Audrey ever be able to have a normal life again? Get ready to find out, because it’s time for Audrey to tell her side of the story.

Yeah… this nightmare pretty much ends the romance.

I want to read this just to see how messed up Audrey’s life gets.


This one seems to have been around for awhile. It’s even been released under a different title. And the plot? Also different! Check it:

“Don’t do it, Annika,” he taunted. His eyes were no longer bright and charming but dark and intense, yet they still twinkled. He was tempting, but was he harmful?

Aspiring rock star Annika Brisby thinks she knows where her life is going until she steps through a broken portal that leaves her stranded in a realm of fairies, vampires, and other mythical beings. Unable to return until it’s repaired, she’s rescued by wood nymphs who believe her sudden arrival is no accident. After being taken in by a prominent family of elves, Annika finds herself struggling to resist the seductive spell of their youngest son, Talvi. Equal parts arrogant and alluring, the notorious heartbreaker seems like the perfect distraction for her homesickness. Her new friends warn her that she’ll probably regret ever laying eyes on him, and what begins as a casual fling quickly burns too hot to handle. By the time Annika learns the consequences of their forbidden trysts, Talvi’s already under her skin and dangerously close to her heart. But on the journey home she discovers that there’s a mountain of secrets that he’s not telling her, and Annika can’t help wondering who’s really in danger.

* Previously titled Balkan Magic, The Misadventures of Annika Brisby

Long before I met Susan, I read a Rock Fiction book that involved fairies and a war between factions. I don’t remember what it was, but this makes me think of that. And I know these aren’t the same book.

The question, which is our usual question, is whether or not Annika’s rocker status has any bearing on the story, or if that’s just a detail included to make her look cool.

Only one way to find out, although if anyone’s already read it and wants to write a review, we’d be glad to post it!


This one’s got a different twist to it. Check it:

I’m supposed to be better than this. I’m supposed to have a tenure-track job teaching music history to undergrads, writing papers about Bach, and proving to kids like me that you can work your way out of Harlem. I’m not supposed to be following a rock star around the country, fetching his mail, making sure his groupies are of age.

I’m definitely not supposed to be sleeping with said rock star, who claims to be the Greek God Dionysus. At first I thought it was a load of crap. Nik’s fans might think his music captures their hearts—and souls—but I knew better. Until one of Nik’s orgiastic concerts gets out of hand and I don’t know which is worse: that he might be a god after all, or that he has a body count.

Nik doesn’t care what I want or what I should be. He wants to tear down the world I’ve built, warping all I am, until his music is all that’s left of me. I can’t let him do that. I shouldn’t believe in him. I’ve seen what happens to the people who believe in him.

But I can’t get his song out of my head.

So first off, we have a music dude who’s a scholar. Who doesn’t have a lot of interest in the rock and roll world that usually fills The Rock of Pages.

But then this creepy Nik dude shows up and there’s definitely horror and probably abuse and all sorts of dark stuff going on. It’s like taking Jeremy Wagner’s The Armageddon Chord one step further into a darker setting.

I’m dying to see what’s going on here, but we’ll have to be careful with any review copies. This one’s got potential to send Susan into some PTSD issues. Anyone brave enough to try it?


Susan found this on NetGalley, but she’s been busy and so have I, so we’ll have to covet it from afar for now.

It is the spring of 1989 in New York City when Jill Dodge, a post-punk rocker from Texas, finally gets her big promotion at Mega Big Records. She is thrust into a race to find a gritty, urban rapper before the Gangsta trend passes their label by. As Jill and her mostly middle-class coworkers search for the next big rap star, they fluctuate between alliances and rivalries, tripping over the stereotypes of race, class, and musical genre. They work to promote their current roster of acts as well as the new rap artist they sign to a contract. It turns out, he may not be what they expected. Full of original lyrics and wit, “Start With the Backbeat” is a compelling examination of the nuances of class, race, and culture in America which are sometimes ridiculously serious.”

This’s got a ton of potential to be satire, or silly, or pointed, or what have you. And it’s different from what we usually see here, too. No romance in sight, for starters.

Bring it.


This is kinda sorta historical fiction. It’s set long before I was born, so that makes it historical, right? 1948?

In the autumn of 1948, young millionaire Will Darcy comes to the sleepy, backwater town of Meryton, South Carolina to visit his best friend, Charles Bingley. When Darcy becomes enchanted by a local beauty with a heavenly voice, his business dealings with Longbourn Farms may close the door to his romantic hopes before they are given a chance to thrive.

Still healing from heartbreak, Elizabeth Bennet takes solace in her family, home, and the tight-knit community of Meryton. That foundation is shaken when Will Darcy makes a successful offer to buy the family farm. Blinded by hurt, will Elizabeth miss the chance to find in him the peace and comfort her heart truly needs?

Confronting the racial, economic, and social inequalities of the times, Longbourn’s Songbird is an imaginative romance inspired by Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and told through the lens of postwar America, a story layered with betrayal and loss, love and letting go.

Maybe this isn’t Rock Fiction in the usual sense, but it’s got a music theme — or it claims to — and that alone lets it count. Besides, it’s different, and you guys ought to know I like different by now.

I’m just curious how important music is to the story. Anyone know?


Now, if this book doesn’t scream DIFFERENT from the title alone, I may be Corey Taylor. And I’m not Corey Taylor and I’ll save the Corey Taylor sex jokes for another blog. [Susan thanks Jett.]


So here’s our book description:

After Arista’s perfect world turns upside down, it takes all her moxey to begin
again. Can she keep her band, Nudie Blues, busy enough to survive?
She never expected a biker with six-pack abs to be her inspiration, but
sometimes life throws you a hardball!

Jared, who looks like a Magic Mike dancer, turns out to be a cowboy ready
for a serious relationship. Is he too good to be true – or running from a past?
The duo dances around their chemistry while plotting to keep their favorite
nudist resort from switching to a lifestyle swingers’ club. When saving their
nudist values get tough, the music always brings them back to each other.

That’s a lot going on in one book! A struggling band, a nudist club that may or may not have this major swing in philosophy, activities, and membership, and a romance.

Can MG Nash pull it off? Inquiring minds.

Oh, and I like the setting, and am curious to know how the whole nudist colony/swinger’s club is handled. I know a lot of nudists who get really angry at the suggestion they are really only there for the sex. And I mean ANGRY.


I’ve got another series! This one looks like it’s the continuing adventures of two siblings with music in their souls. Here’s the description for the first, Leaving Amarillo.

Nashville meets New Adult in Neon Dreams, a dramatic, sexy series from bestselling author Caisey Quinn, about a country band’s rocky road to fame—and the ambition, dreams, and love of the people who make the music.

Dixie Lark hasn’t had it easy. She lost her parents in an accident when she was young and grew up in a ramshackle house on a dirt road in Amarillo with her ailing grandparents and overprotective older brother. Thanks to her grandfather, Dixie learned to play a mean fiddle, inspired by the sounds of the greats—Johnny and June, Waylon, and Hank. Her grandfather’s fiddle changed Dixie’s life forever, giving her an outlet for the turmoil of her broken heart and inspiring a daring dream.

Ten years later, Dixie and her brother, Dallas, are creating the music they love and chasing fame with their hot band, Leaving Amarillo. But Dixie isn’t enjoying the ride. All she can think about is Gavin, the band’s tattooed, tortured drummer who she’s loved since they were kids. She knows he feels the connection between them, but he refuses see her as more than his best friend’s little sister.

Convinced that one night with Gavin will get him out of her system, Dixie devises a plan. She doesn’t know that her brother has forbidden Gavin from making a move on her-a promise he swore he’d always keep . . . a promise that once broken will unexpectedly change the future for Dixie, Gavin and the band.

The familiar stuff in here — being raised by grandparents, the big brother who threatens the friend to keep his hands off his sister — isn’t familiar to Rock Fiction. Love it!

But if the band is called Leaving Amarillo, why is the series called Neon Dreams? Where are the Neon Dreams?

The description for the second book, Loving Dallas, doesn’t share that secret:

In the second novel in bestselling author Caisey Quinn’s Neon Dreams series, a country rock band and its members embark on the rocky road to fame and find love along the way.

Dallas Lark is so close to achieving his dream of making it big in country music that he can taste it. Arriving in Nashville after signing with sexy, successful manager Mandy Lantram, his life goes from tragedy and turmoil to one lucky break after another—except it isn’t really luck because Dallas has sacrificed everything for his career, leaving behind his band, sister, best friend, and high school sweetheart, Robyn, in the pursuit of fame.

Robyn Breeland is a successful marketing coordinator and promotions specialist for a thriving liquor distributor out of Texas. She loves every aspect of her job: coming up with new ideas, traveling, hosting promotional parties and exclusive events—until it brings her face-to-face with the man who broke her heart, prompting her to erect a steel cage around it.

When their paths collide and they’re forced to work together, Dallas and Robyn realize that the old spark they thought they’d extinguished might still be a burning flame.

And the third book isn’t scheduled to come out until Rocktober, so I can’t tell you anything about it.

BUT. And here’s a big BUT. Check out what this author is doing:
1. She broke up the band
2. The books look like they focus on siblings first and bandmates second
3. Characters are willing to put a lot on the line — and leave a lot behind, in that second book. Dallas dumps it all in his need to make it to the top.

Interesting, interesting stuff. Can’t wait to get my hands on this and see how it all pans out.


Usually, with Rock Fiction, there’s only one character around who’s the musician. That’s kinda been the norm, unless you have members of the same band all running around. But they’re usually not the focus of the story, the romantic lead and all. Usually.

That’s the first thing about Colleen Hoover’s Maybe Someday that caught my eye. The second thing is the title. It’s not a title that screams Rock Fiction.

From the description, this sounds less like a romance, too, although there’s definitely romance involved. But it sounds like this woman’s catalyst is music. As it should be.

At twenty-two years old, aspiring musician Sydney Blake has a great life: She’s in college, working a steady job, in love with her wonderful boyfriend, Hunter, and rooming with her good friend, Tori. But everything changes when she discovers Hunter cheating on her with Tori—and she is left trying to decide what to do next.

Sydney becomes captivated by her mysterious neighbor, Ridge Lawson. She can’t take her eyes off him or stop listening to the daily guitar playing he does out on his balcony. She can feel the harmony and vibrations in his music. And there’s something about Sydney that Ridge can’t ignore, either: He seems to have finally found his muse. When their inevitable encounter happens, they soon find themselves needing each other in more ways than one…

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover, a passionate tale of friendship, betrayal, and romance—and the enchanting music that inspires one young woman to put her life back together.

Okay, so the boyfriend cheating with the best friend/roommate is a bit more familiar. I suppose they all can’t be totally original and different.

This isn’t one I gotta say, “Only one way to find out if the author handles it well.” This is an out-and-out “I gotta read this. Now.”