Stay (Bleeding Stars, #5)
"I grow to love the boys who make up Sunder and the women they love more and more with each member's personal story. But I have a special place in my heart for Ash and Willow and simply devoured this book and was left with a happy smile on my face and a sigh in my heart. AL Jackson at her swoony, sexy best." Mia Sheridan, NYT Bestselling Author "Captivating. Sexy. And in true AL Jackson style, beautifully devastating. This is hands down her best work to date, and the best thing I've read all year." ~Molly McAdams, NYT Bestselling Author "You don’t have to look hard to see the beauty that bleeds into AL Jackson's words, so wondrous and so WOW. Every word that this author writes is full of feels. Every word is mesmerizing and meaningful. Every word means everything. Every word IS EVERYTHING. Stay is the newest roller coaster of a rock star romance from A.L. Jackson’s Bleeding Stars series that is pure beauty in words that break, bind, and make your heart bleed. STAY SLAYED MY SOUL."★★★★★ ‘but worth 10’ soul-slaying stars ~Karen, Bookalicious Babes BlogFrom NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author A.L. Jackson comes the next sexy, gripping Bleeding Stars Stand-Alone Novel…I’m Ash Evans.The life of the party.Hot. Rich. Charismatic.A tattooed rock star with the world at my feet.I burn through women faster than the strike of a match.I’ve embraced my lifestyle and live it to the fullest.Until the day my lifestyle caught up to me.Willow Langston found me at my lowest.Literally.Facedown in a puddle of my own blood.I owe her my life and I have three months to repay that debt.What I never should have done was touch her. Kiss her. Take her to my bed.Love wasn’t supposed to be a part of the equation.I gave up that nasty complication a long damned time ago.Now I want her more than my next breath.But she doesn’t know what I know.Do I leave to protect her? Or can I face my demons and ask her to Stay?

Stay (Bleeding Stars, #5) Details

TitleStay (Bleeding Stars, #5)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJan 23rd, 2017
PublisherA.L. Jackson Books
Rating
GenreNew Adult, Romance, Contemporary Romance, Music, Contemporary

Stay (Bleeding Stars, #5) Review

  • Karen Mc
    January 1, 1970
    "You see the beauty in the old. The beauty in the bad. The beauty that's hidden in all things. It's always here, we just have to look hard enough for it." You don’t have to look hard to see the beauty that bleeds into A.L. Jackson’s words, so wondrous and so WOW. Every word that this author writes is full of feels. Every word is mesmerizing and meaningful. Every word means everything. Every word IS EVERYTHING. Stay is the newest roller coaster of a rock star romance from A.L. Jackson’s Bleedi "You see the beauty in the old. The beauty in the bad. The beauty that's hidden in all things. It's always here, we just have to look hard enough for it." You don’t have to look hard to see the beauty that bleeds into A.L. Jackson’s words, so wondrous and so WOW. Every word that this author writes is full of feels. Every word is mesmerizing and meaningful. Every word means everything. Every word IS EVERYTHING. Stay is the newest roller coaster of a rock star romance from A.L. Jackson’s Bleeding Stars series that is pure beauty in words that break, bind, and make your heart bleed. Knowing the power and pull of this series and the way it extracts every feel from me, I devoured Stay slowly. I had to inhale this story in small doses to give my heart time to slow its beating, my body time to slow its breathing, and my brain time to process all of the feelings floating around in my head. I did not want to put Stay down, yet I had to process the firestorm of feels flowing and calm my emotions from this story’s sensory storm.The Prologue pulled at me immediately, barreling down on my heart and soul with the power of a fierce fire, one where I knew I would get burned. This firestorm of feels was a fight I would not win…did not want to win. The fire of Stay lit me up with life, one where every breath matched every breathtakingly beautiful word. Light to light. Dark to dark. Beauty to beauty. Feel to feel. I knew from the Prologue that I would feel every bit, every blaze, every burn, and every bright light from Ash and Willow's story. Stay would slay me everywhere, and that it did.The first sentence and first paragraph of the Prologue hit me with the force of a thousand winds. Tears welded in my eyes just from that verbiage as I knew there would be many more to follow…all kinds of tears for all kinds of emotions evoked from Stay. “We rarely know when our lives are about to change. When the direction we have been traveling to will shift. When the stagnant comfort we’ve cut out for ourselves will take a sharp turn south, or when everything we know will come to an abrupt, excruciating end.” Ash Evans, the wild man and guitarist for Sunder, has a huge heart, humor, charisma, and is the life of the party. Tall, muscular, inked, dark blond-haired, bearded, and ocean-blue eyes, Ash is pure heat and easy on the eyes. Inside, though, Ash is battling demons that won’t die. His wounds are so deeply embedded, making him bleed for the past that has held him prisoner for so long. Ash’s huge heart is a gaping wound, one that he believes he caused. He’s leading a life where he feels unworthy and that tore me to shreds. “He was some kind of glorious avenger with a wicked smile and a wayward tongue.” Beautiful, mahogany-haired, brown-eyed, and long-legged Willow Langston is hanging onto life by a thread. Everyone she’s loved has left. Willow’s heart is decimated; she has nothing left to give. Just one chapter in and my heart broke…bleeding all over the pages. STAY…I wanted to stay steadily reading but had to catch my breath as my lungs breathed in every wondrous and wielding word. The words quickly became flames that lit me up. I searched for that light in the darkness, the darkness that tried to hijack my head and heart. I WAS ON FIRE...I WAS ALIVE. Willow has nothing left to give… Until Ash Evans crosses her path in what feels like fate. “A stranger who’d touched me without saying a word.” Until she finds Ash broken and burned. “The man was so dangerous and alive. Compelling. Magnetic. A bright, bright flame.” Until she saves him. “She’d saved me. She’d bound herself to me in a way I was sure neither of us could quite understand.” Ash owes Willow a debt for life....his life. Though Willow doesn’t want a thing…except the one thing Ash won’t give: his heart. “I didn’t have any place left inside myself to get ripped up and torn to pieces. And somehow I knew this man would tear me to shreds.” Only a few chapters in and I broke as I bled for both the hero and the heroine. Two broken souls who should be one. STAY…I had to catch my tears I wanted to stay inside, willing them not to fall. Tears that teased the dam of waterworks waiting to burst from the words that clutched my soul, extracting every emotion. Beckoning me. Binding me. Becoming me.A connection, so big as if it beckoned from above, blazed between Willow and Ash. An aura of fire, fueled by fate, danced around them. Lighting them up. Lifting them out of the darkness…lifting me out of the darkness…if only for a little while. “Do you feel that? Everything simmering around us? Threatening to boil over. A flame just waitin’ for a match.” Oh how I felt this blaze of Stay burn me too. This passion penetrated from the pages to me. “Tell me you want me. Tell me you feel this, too.” STAY…I wanted to stay in this moment…soak up these powerful and poignant words…soak up this sun cast over this couple. Willow and Ash’s connection and chemistry was combustible, a force of fate. I could not help but smile a grin filled with hope as I was sucked into a wave of passion, one of soulmates, one of love powerful as those flames that ignite between them. I felt every burn…every blaze…every beautiful and brilliant word…I FELT IT ALL. “On a breathy sigh, my lips parted. His hot tongue slanted against mine. Flames. I felt them everywhere. Burning me up from the inside…He would wreck me. I knew it.” Their chemistry and emotions are explosive—as were mine—so hot and heartfelt that I felt the flames from Ash and Willow melt me. “Tonight belongs to you. I’m going to touch you until you’re dancing somewhere with the stars and then I’m going to catch you when you come back down. Then, I’m going to send you flying again.” Oh Ash! His words smoldered yet made me swoon so very hard! I LOVED THIS MAN of many layers but with a heart of gold that penetrated those layers the hardest…penetrating my heart too. My heart was hit so hard, it spun right into my soul. This broken boy and this broken girl…they broke me. Again and again. My tears tore through this story, leading the way as I absorbed each feel-worthy word into my heart...my soul. “You’re killing me, darlin’.”“And you’re saving me.” STAY…I wanted to freeze those feels that flowed through me, so beautiful and bittersweet. Permanent tears etched into my eyes. I sighed. Stay filled my lungs as I breathed in every breathtakingly beautiful word. These words filtered into my very core. STAY…I had to stop and catch my heart that this story so forcefully claimed. Ash is Willow's angel. Willow saved him but he's saving her too. She is the calm to Ash’s chaos. Ash and Willow are saviors who are slaying the other’s demons…slaying each other’s souls…slaying my soul. “You deserve so much better than what’s waiting here.” STAY…I wanted Ash to stay. This bigger than life of a man with an even bigger heart, Ash, doesn’t think he’s worthy of love after a painful past for which he thinks he’s responsible. Oh did Ash’s words about being unworthy GUT ME…UNGLUE ME. I was destroyed…devastated...dying for Ash to stay. “What if I want you to stay?” STAY…I wanted this couple to stay together. I wanted to stay in this story, sinking so deeply where my soul could continue to soar, where I could continue to break in the most beautiful way. This book…oh did IT BREAK ME. Stay…is sorrow…soul…swoon…sensations…SO MUCH OF EVERYTHING! This book owned every piece of me. Stay?!? It’s already in my top books for 2017…perhaps my very favorite for this year. Stay was the fire that burned me...making my heart bleed...and then nursing that wound. I felt as if I were walking on that fire, each word blazing with poignancy, passion, and promise. A destined and devastatingly beautiful love story, Stay hit my heart hard and fast—flames scorching my soul—while my emotions bled like water from a storm. Tears of emotions flooded me, trickling down like raindrops…fire to water…feel to feel. I FELT every word like a kiss that penetrated every piece of me: body, heart, and soul. This firestorm of feels wouldn’t stop; I didn’t want it to end…ever. I LOVED Stay. I lived Stay. I breathed Stay. I was bound to Stay. I became Stay. Stay slayed me. Stay sang to my soul. Stay is what I want to do, wrap myself in this magic a little longer…perhaps forever. ★★★★★ ‘but worth 10’ soul-slaying stars Web: http://www.bookaliciousbabes.comFacebook: http://www.facebook.com/bookaliciousb...Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/bookaliciousbbInstagram: http://www.instagram.com/bookaliciousbb
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  • A.L. Jackson
    January 1, 1970
    It's always such a crazy thing to sit afterward and ponder my books. Stay was a labor of love. It started in two different directions that weren't speaking to me, until Ash & Willow's story finally become clear in my mind. The moment it was, it flowed from me in a way that held my heart with each word. I can only hope their story grips you and touches you the way it's touched me. It was such a blessing bringing this story to life.
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  • ♥ Jx PinkLady Reviews ♥
    January 1, 1970
    STAY marks my first AL Jackson reading experience and the fifth story in the Bleeding Stars series written in such a manner that it can be totally enjoyed as a STANDALONE romance. Equally the many fans of this series will appreciate revisiting a cast of characters they have previously met and loved. The story centres on tattooed rock star Ash and Willow, the girl who literally saves him in the opening chapters ensuring STAY gained my immediate engagement with the characters. I warmed to them and STAY marks my first AL Jackson reading experience and the fifth story in the Bleeding Stars series written in such a manner that it can be totally enjoyed as a STANDALONE romance. Equally the many fans of this series will appreciate revisiting a cast of characters they have previously met and loved. The story centres on tattooed rock star Ash and Willow, the girl who literally saves him in the opening chapters ensuring STAY gained my immediate engagement with the characters. I warmed to them and wanted to know how their lives would become entwined after this dramatic start and how they would ultimately fall in love. I liked the characters and thought I would easily fall in love with this angst ridden romantic story but ultimately and against popular opinion I didn’t love this book as much as I had hoped. I found there was too many word/phrase repeats, the prose was overtly flowery, even the hero’s dialogue which didn’t fit how I believed a tattooed rock star would talk and the angst, an element I crave in my reading material, felt somewhat contrived rather than organically formed. These three elements reflect my personal reading tastes and I know many, many readers will disagree with me but unfortunately these elements caused my disengagement hence my 'like' rating rather than love. The last 20% and the culmination of the story, although involving a high level of coincidence and tragedy, was incredibly interesting and a satisfying aspect of the read and I totally see why many of my reading friends love so much.Advance copy provided for my honest review thoughts *
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  • Jenny••Steamy Reads Blog••
    January 1, 1970
    This book by far was my favorite in the series, so far. I fell in love, hard, with Ash Evans and Willow Langston ❤ These rock stars keep melting my heart into a puddle of goo. Ash was a lovable, kind, sweet, always so positive in all the previous books in this series. This book, we got the real deal. The rock star you just can not fall in love with. He was everything, he took care of those he loved, he looked out for everyone, he strived to never hurt those he cared about. He carried demons from This book by far was my favorite in the series, so far. I fell in love, hard, with Ash Evans and Willow Langston ❤️ These rock stars keep melting my heart into a puddle of goo. Ash was a lovable, kind, sweet, always so positive in all the previous books in this series. This book, we got the real deal. The rock star you just can not fall in love with. He was everything, he took care of those he loved, he looked out for everyone, he strived to never hurt those he cared about. He carried demons from his past and when those demons came to light, I about sank to the floor. So not what I saw coming..... Willow is a heroine I had a lot of compassion for. She's dealt with a lot of hurt, a lot of loss, and a lot of heartbreak in her 28 years of life. I knew this book would be hard, I knew there would be some life shattering circumstances, it kept hinting at it, my heart hurt for her reading this book. When you read a book and it blows you away, you realize exactly the reason you read books. I love to escape into books, like this one, the feels it gives you, I love it. I crave it. Although i had problems coming to terms with the turn of events at the end, I am in awe at how this couple overcame it and I think it makes me love this book that much more. I definitely want more to this couple and hope we get more of them in Zee's book. How can this series be almost done????? On to the next..
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  • Paige
    January 1, 1970
    5 "Pretend with Me" StarsAsh might just be my favorite Sunder boy yet. A.L. Jackson added another marvelous story to this series with a hero who was a just a little bit broken and a heroine who was his perfect fit. Stay was sweet and sexy and raw and honest. It made me smile and swoon and hold my heart and hope for happiness. Ms. Jackson is one of my favorite authors for a reason. Ash is the easy going ladies man of Sunder especially now that three of his bandmates have settled down. Spending ti 5 "Pretend with Me" StarsAsh might just be my favorite Sunder boy yet. A.L. Jackson added another marvelous story to this series with a hero who was a just a little bit broken and a heroine who was his perfect fit. Stay was sweet and sexy and raw and honest. It made me smile and swoon and hold my heart and hope for happiness. Ms. Jackson is one of my favorite authors for a reason. Ash is the easy going ladies man of Sunder especially now that three of his bandmates have settled down. Spending time in Savannah is supposed to to be relaxing downtime. But Ash chooses the wrong lady to spend some of that downtime with. When a group of local men make it known that they don't appreciate Ash, Willow finds and saves him. Trying to show his thanks to the mysterious women, Ash goes to her store and finds way more than he bargained for. As Ash gets to know Willow, he finds that she is a little bit broken too and maybe, just maybe, they can pretend for a little bit that they are actually meant to be. Ms. Jackson has a way with with words. She's always able to pull every single emotion out of me and by the end of this book I was even more in love with Ash than I was to begin with. His story was so much deeper and more involved that I ever imagined. He was a softey wrapped in armor and I loved watching him shed that facade when Willow was around. And Willow. She had so much heartbreak in her life so watching her fall in love with Ash made my heart happy even when I was trying to guard it because I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. And when it dropped, I may have anticipated it, but it still made me anxious. Yet A.L. fixed me right up and made it all worthwhile. ARC provided for honest review.
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  • Maddie
    January 1, 1970
    “One thing you should never do is mistake broken for weak.” The quote above stayed with me the last two week, so here I am writing my first review for 2017 “We rarely know when our lives are about to change. When the direction we have been traveling will shift. When the stagnant comfort we’ve cut out for ourselves will take a sharp turn south, or when everything we know will come to an abrupt, excruciating end. From the first paragraph of this book I was hooked. So yeah I pretty much loved t “One thing you should never do is mistake broken for weak.” The quote above stayed with me the last two week, so here I am writing my first review for 2017 “We rarely know when our lives are about to change. When the direction we have been traveling will shift. When the stagnant comfort we’ve cut out for ourselves will take a sharp turn south, or when everything we know will come to an abrupt, excruciating end. From the first paragraph of this book I was hooked. So yeah I pretty much loved this book, and will recommend it!Ash Evans - Spreading the love wherever he went: One sentence from book to describe Ash! “I love women and women love me. I make no apologies. Simple as that.” – Ash Willow Langston aka peaches – she finds antique furniture, “things that are broken and put them back together.”: The story starts where Ash is assaulted because of a hook-up who conveniently failed to mention anything about Billy her fiancé. “Funny how I’d refused to think twice about the end until the end was staring me in the face.” - Ash The following morning Willow finds Ash outside her shop, battered and broken, from the moment she looks into his eyes blue and intense they pierced straight through her and in that instant her whole world changes.Ash formally meets Willow after released from hospital, he learns from her friend that she needs money to save her shop from bankruptcy, not thinking twice, he appoints her for renovating his bedroom to thank her for saving his life.They share a pretend relationship to make her ex who broke her jealous, but how far can you take pretend until the feeling turn realAlthough Willow is very clear on the fact that she will only sleep with males if she loves them (NOPE NOT A VIRGIN BOOK), Ash do not give up, and to be honest as the author illustrated Ash in this book, Willow willpower has been lost the first day seeing him without his shirt. But as most good stories go Ash are keeping secrets – secrets that can destroy Willow and her trust in Ash forever, if this secrets are revealed will Willow be able to forgive Ash and move forward?What I loved most about this book is the electricity between Ash and Willow, how Ash fought against this electricity, and Willow against the sexual tension. Do not get me wrong, I do sometimes love *WHAM BAM THANK YOU MAM BOOKS* but in this case the build-up was perfect!For those who like sexual tension books with a twist in the storyline, this will be right up your alley, and what is nice the sexual tension builds up slowly!Quotes below is how I felt about this book! There are moments in your life you wish you could set to pause. Press a button to delay the passage of time. Maybe have the ability to play them again and again so you could hold onto them forever. “Sometimes the best thing we can do is find joy in other people’s happiness.”
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  • Deanna❤Pink Lady❤️
    January 1, 1970
    4 "Please Stay" Stars This is a story of two broken souls. One happy go lucky, one introverted, both living but not really living. When these two meet, it's as if the universe finally aligns. But while one thinks of the possibilities, the other doesn't believe himself worthy. Angsty, Angsty, Angsty!!!This is an emotional read. Willow Langston is beautiful, sweet and broken. Her life hasn't turned out like she expected. She has loss, heartache and is fixing to lose her business. Ash Evans is a fa 4 "Please Stay" Stars This is a story of two broken souls. One happy go lucky, one introverted, both living but not really living. When these two meet, it's as if the universe finally aligns. But while one thinks of the possibilities, the other doesn't believe himself worthy. Angsty, Angsty, Angsty!!!This is an emotional read. Willow Langston is beautiful, sweet and broken. Her life hasn't turned out like she expected. She has loss, heartache and is fixing to lose her business. Ash Evans is a famous musician in a band. He is gorgeous, has a heart of gold and is also broken. Trouble finds him and this latest time, it almost leaves him for dead if not for Willow. She saves him and in return, they save each other........Kismet Maybe???The journey that Willow and Ash embark on is deep, raw, pure and heartbreaking. While they have the ability to fix each other, Ash doesn't believe he is good enough for Willow. He's only good for a good time, an arrangement and then he must go. But what Ash didn't count on is that Willow is unforgettable and someone who makes him feel alive. It's a struggle, it's everything that shouldn't be allowed, but it's awakening and beautiful. It's an endearing walk of two broken souls that are drawn to one another despite their fear and desire.As this was my first book in the series, I must say that I did not feel lost about the other band characters which have prior books. It definitely can be read as a standalone. I will say that the band members and their loves were all present and involved in Ash's life. They all make up a family and their interactions with Willow and Ash bring that home. I also really enjoyed Willow's best friend Emily. All the secondary characters really add lots of heart and flavor to the story.STAY is......Second Chance Love, Angst, Lust, Heartache, Friendship, Romance.......and after reading about Willow and Ash......I promise that this story will STAY with you and make you smile for days.*advanced copy provided in exchange for an honest review*
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  • Katy Loves Romance ❤️
    January 1, 1970
    5 Peaches Stars*****"Never mistake broken for weak." I haven't read an AL Jackson book for along time, and so kind of forgot the magic she brings to her words and stories.. although this took a chapter or two to get into it once I was hooked that was it. I stayed up until after 2am to finish it.. which basically means I loved... LOL Ok so what's it about?Ash is part of a worldwide known band but he's also the easy one, the joker of sorts. He's full of life, full of fun and goes after easy times 5 Peaches Stars*****"Never mistake broken for weak." I haven't read an AL Jackson book for along time, and so kind of forgot the magic she brings to her words and stories.. although this took a chapter or two to get into it once I was hooked that was it. I stayed up until after 2am to finish it.. which basically means I loved... LOL Ok so what's it about?Ash is part of a worldwide known band but he's also the easy one, the joker of sorts. He's full of life, full of fun and goes after easy times. He's happy to give women his time but it's never special, it's easy and simple and that's that. But then one night he gets himself into trouble and Willow finds him nearly at deaths door and saves his life... And that's where things change and Ash wants to give back to Willow something she's given him... there is attraction but Ash can't give himself wholly and Willow only ever sleeps with the men she is in love with. Let's talk about Willow for a moment shall we? Willow has lost a lot of people she loves in her life and her absolute fear is being alone.. see Willow is full of love, if there ever was a female character I loved then Gah Willow is EASY to Love. She has lots of it and what Ash and Willow begins with grows into something more, something special and something for THEM. I really want you guys to enjoy this the way I did. But know I devoured this, I think band and music themed reads are one of my absolute favourites. As you get those moments of unity within the band and group and family and pure familiarity 'you know' care and devotion between them all and this one really grew on me, the more I read the more I loved it. I suppose ultimately it's about one who thinks he doesn't need love, and one who has a lot of love to give and that in itself is a beautiful read, it was fun, easy, sexy, and then emotional and unputtadownable. On a side note this is part of the Bleeding Stars series but I read this as a standalone. So your good to go, I really want to catch up with the other books in this series though as I enjoyed this one so much... Enjoy Xoxo ARC generously gifted in exchange for a honest review For more reviews and blog posts
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review Stay by AL Jackson is a literary composition that beautifully blends raw emotions, love, and second chances in a visceral and poetic manner. There is no question in doubt that Jackson has a way with words. It seems she has this ethereal way of tugging and pulling those heartstrings as her words bleeds into our hearts, mind and soul. Jackson knew the lyrics to our heart when it came to mending the broken pieces as she brought forth two broke ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review Stay by AL Jackson is a literary composition that beautifully blends raw emotions, love, and second chances in a visceral and poetic manner. There is no question in doubt that Jackson has a way with words. It seems she has this ethereal way of tugging and pulling those heartstrings as her words bleeds into our hearts, mind and soul. Jackson knew the lyrics to our heart when it came to mending the broken pieces as she brought forth two broken and lost individuals. Hearts are strumming, beating and racing wildly as readers could feel the pulse and connection of Willow and Ash. Is it fate? Kismet? Regardless of what you may call it, when their two worlds collided it brought forth a deep connection that will only stay with you. Yes, it stayed. It bleed deep into your hearts and bones where you were left speechless, breathless and mesmerized. The beauty of Stay is getting lost in Jackson's words, flawed characters and the raw emotions. It's about surrendering to the brokenness, emptiness, loss, heartache and most importantly the love. The writing was brilliant, poignant and full of compassion. Her poetic and lyrical prose is a symphony of beauty, truth, understanding and hope. So are you ready to feel and get consumed with every tangible and palpable elements of the tune and melody of AL Jackson? If so, I suggest you Stay. A.L. Jackson
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  • Pam Nelson
    January 1, 1970
    5 Stay Stars - ❤ Audible Review HERE ❤This book guys I am telling you is utterly phenomenal this story is going to blow you away. If you thought Wait was a good story this book is just as amazing. So many feels so much heart break, so much regret and loss and sorrow. But yet there is so so much hope and happiness you wouldn't think so but it’s true.Willow is one heck of a strong female you don’t see it right away, she will unfold and show herself to you bit by bit. And you will fall in love with 5 Stay Stars - ❤ Audible Review HERE ❤This book guys I am telling you is utterly phenomenal this story is going to blow you away. If you thought Wait was a good story this book is just as amazing. So many feels so much heart break, so much regret and loss and sorrow. But yet there is so so much hope and happiness you wouldn't think so but it’s true.Willow is one heck of a strong female you don’t see it right away, she will unfold and show herself to you bit by bit. And you will fall in love with her. Ash, oh Ash is a story I have been waiting for and his story will break your heart. But it will heel as he heels in the book. I am telling you Mrs. Jackson really made me fall in love with Ash in away I don’t think I ever have for a fictional character. I wanted to reach out and hug him. At times I wanted to shake him and then there were times I wanted to cry for him. This story is not about finding yourself and learning to live with the past. For me this story was about embracing the future and learning to forgive what has pasted. These two characters have this connection that makes this story so believable to me.I am also so blown away with the narrators, both of them I am huge fans of but for me it was the way they brought this book to life. The emotion they put in their words, you just feel it come through. I can’t tell you how much I love this audiobook you just have to experience it for yourself. *You don't have to like my review but its 100% my opinion, and I am allowed to have it.*
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  • Betul
    January 1, 1970
    **ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review**"We bled with the stars. Where they streaked and wept across the endless sky. Infinite. Burning bright right before they quickly burned out. Ashes."I have been following this author and reading her books since the beginning of 2013. She is one of the few authors whose books I automatically one-click without even reading the blurb, which is a huge deal for me. AL Jackson writes like a poet, and her words feel magical to me. It always make **ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review**"We bled with the stars. Where they streaked and wept across the endless sky. Infinite. Burning bright right before they quickly burned out. Ashes."I have been following this author and reading her books since the beginning of 2013. She is one of the few authors whose books I automatically one-click without even reading the blurb, which is a huge deal for me. AL Jackson writes like a poet, and her words feel magical to me. It always makes me want to read as slow as possible to savor each and every word. I can trust that she will deliver a beautiful story that will touch me deeply. I love the Bleeding Star series, and every member of Sunder has a special place in my heart. However I had been waiting a long time on Ash's book."Love is never cut and dry. It's messy. Confusing. Sometimes it's ugly and sometimes it;s the most beautiful thing you've ever seen."Ash is this happy-go-lucky, easy-going guy who is always making everyone laugh and messing with them. I should've guessed that he had demons. He was broken and didn't think he deserved happiness. He had been punishing himself for so long that it became second nature to him. Reading the flashbacks were really heartbreaking and I couldn't contain my tears. He wanted to stay in the darkness, however the moment he met Willow she became his ray of sunlight. Willow was a perfect match for Ash. I loved how they met and how their relationship developed. She is shy, sweet and selfless. She never pushed Ash and he never pushed her. Like Ash, Willow had gone through some really traumatic incidents as well. She lost everyone that was dear to her. Ash and Willow were two broken people who healed and completed each other."I want to own you, Peaches. I want to awaken what's been lying dormant. Bring it to life. Watch you glow."Stay is a great addition to the Bleeding Stars series. I really enjoyed this book and loved seeing Ash and Willow heal. I especially enjoyed seeing Willow come out of her shell. I also loved seeing what the rest of the gang were up to. Now I can't wait to see who Zee wil end up in Stand. He is the most mysterious character of them all and I have no idea what to expect. His story is a second-chance romance so that has me even more excited.
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  • Sarah - Musings of the Modern Belle
    January 1, 1970
    ***AVAILABLE NOW - FULL REVIEW***5 DANDELOIN CROWNSThe complexity and layers of this book, of these characters, and of the author’s words make this book so much more than just a romance. It is beautiful. It is raw. It is poignant. The complexity and layers of each character and storyline is unparalleled and exactly what I have come to expect from A.L. Jackson’s Bleeding Stars series.These characters, particularly Willow and Ash, stole my heart, but what really draws the reader in is the dichotom ***AVAILABLE NOW - FULL REVIEW***5 DANDELOIN CROWNSThe complexity and layers of this book, of these characters, and of the author’s words make this book so much more than just a romance. It is beautiful. It is raw. It is poignant. The complexity and layers of each character and storyline is unparalleled and exactly what I have come to expect from A.L. Jackson’s Bleeding Stars series.These characters, particularly Willow and Ash, stole my heart, but what really draws the reader in is the dichotomy of their characters. Willow seems weak and broken. Life has beaten her down and left her for the dead, metaphorically, but this heroine is so much stronger than she seems on the outside. The pain she has endured, the times she has been knocked down only to rise back up, and the loss she has suffered hasn’t broken her. She may be set back temporarily, but this girl is a fighter. Her kindness, her compassion, and the peace that emanates from her is soothing to Ash, to the group, and even to the reader. Just like Willow, Ash is not anything that he appears to be, and while readers expect this from the men of Sunder, Ash’s mask he wears may be the hardest to bear. Readers of the series know Ash as the life of the party, always looking for a good time and ready to throw down when needed, but there always seems to be something hollow, something missing, and when Ash finds it, he cannot let go. The self-loathing, the lack of self-worth is not something that I ever expected to get from the cockiest members of Sunder, but this is a side that he keeps suppressed. His vulnerability, his pain, and his desperate need for redemption will make readers want to reach out and hug him, because at the core of who Ash is he is a good man. The layering and fully developed characterization of both Willow and Ash not only showcases the incredible talent of A.L. Jackson but also is one of the many reasons readers will fall in love with Stay.I know A.L. Jackson wrote these two characters for each other, but there are just some couples the fit in every single way. Willow and Ash are this couple. She soothes his soul, gives him peace, and makes him long for a place to stay, even if he feels he doesn’t deserve it. She makes him better and more stable, and provides him with a place to come home. As Willow helps Ash, he improves her life just as much. Ash brings Willow to life, makes her step out of her comfort zone, and forces her to take a leap of faith. He heals her inside, working to improve her self-confidence in all avenues of her life. These two souls are both so broken, and yet they find love and redemption within each other’s’ arms. Their chemistry and interactions, physical and emotional, are simply beautiful.This story, like every other story in the Bleeding Stars series, is emotional. A.L. Jackson’s words will destroy readers’ hearts, and makes them ache for her characters. They are beat down and tortured, and with every single sentence and every single word she makes readers feel it. The brokenness of each character is raw and tragic, and leaves the reader hoping for these two broken characters to heal. What I love, though, about this author is that she heals her characters, thus healing the hearts of her readers. This tortured souls in her books always find redemption in themselves, in their lovers, in the arms of their friends. A.L. Jackson leaves them whole and complete, and at the end of every story my heart is full and warm.I cannot get enough of A.L. Jackson’s words. This woman’s talent as a writer never ceases to amaze me. Her words, ideas, and themes hit me straight in the heart, and she is one of the few writers that can get to me emotionally. She puts me on a tumultuous rollercoaster EVERY SINGLE TIME! Her writing is just beautiful, authentic, real, and her books, particularly this series, should be sitting on every single bookshelf of romance reader. It is just that good!-------------------------ARC received in exchange for an honest review.For more reviews and other book news, check out Musings of the Modern Belle at www.modernbellebooks.com.
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  • Qhuinn
    January 1, 1970
    Hero was in love with the heroine's sister, slept with the sister, and got her pregnant. Then he cheats on the sister, and she ends up killing herself. Some odd years later, the hero starts a relationship with the heroine, and along the way, finds out that she's the sister to his dead ex. Doesn't tell the heroine, and sleeps with her anyways. Amazing. I honestly don't understand how the heroine could be with a person like the hero. Not only is he a manwhore that sleeps with anything that moves, Hero was in love with the heroine's sister, slept with the sister, and got her pregnant. Then he cheats on the sister, and she ends up killing herself. Some odd years later, the hero starts a relationship with the heroine, and along the way, finds out that she's the sister to his dead ex. Doesn't tell the heroine, and sleeps with her anyways. Amazing. I honestly don't understand how the heroine could be with a person like the hero. Not only is he a manwhore that sleeps with anything that moves, he may have been the catalyst to the heroine's sister committing suicide. Oh and let's not forget that for the majority of the book, the hero is still in love with her sister's memory. Bye.
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  • AC Book Blog (Anne Christine)
    January 1, 1970
    OM-Freaking-G! Just finished this masterpiece and I have no words. A.L. Jackson did not give us a fair warning … this story just completely slayed me. I am emotionally spent but in a good way. You know what? I love every hero in this Bleeding Stars series and I hate to pick, but I am going to say that Ash is my FAVORITE … for now anyways because there is one final left …. Zee in Stand!!!! AHHH! “Chasing dreams always came with a risk.Dreams that scattered and blew and so often seemed out of reac OM-Freaking-G! Just finished this masterpiece and I have no words. A.L. Jackson did not give us a fair warning … this story just completely slayed me. I am emotionally spent but in a good way. You know what? I love every hero in this Bleeding Stars series and I hate to pick, but I am going to say that Ash is my FAVORITE … for now anyways because there is one final left …. Zee in Stand!!!! AHHH! “Chasing dreams always came with a risk.Dreams that scattered and blew and so often seemed out of reach.But eventually, those dreams?They settled and took root.They found the one place they were meant to Stay.”I can’t say enough about this author’s writing. It’s a whole unique experience for me. I feel like I am reading a poem except everything makes sense and I can actually understand the entire poem. I felt peaceful and content - It is truly captivating and beautiful the whole way. I really love Ash. On the outside, Ash is happy-go-lucky, the star of the party. He does not do relationships or commitment but rather is a hit it and quit it kind of guy. But deep down, Ash is a complicated man, a tortured soul with a huge heart. He made too many mistakes in his life such that he thinks he is not good enough for anyone. Ash blames himself and carries a chip on his shoulders, believing he does not deserve to be happy. I had a hunch that his dark past had something to do with Willow but I did not expect their life to collide in such a painful way. I adore Willow – she is beautiful and sweet… the girl next door. She just got out of a bad relationship. Willow is struggling to keep her store afloat and take care of her sick mother. The last thing she needs is to tangle up with a rock star. Life has a way of surprising you when you are least expecting it though. Willow found Ash beaten and left to die outside her store. The brief moment their eyes met it was like magic and their lives forever intertwined. Is it a coincidence or fate? What will happen when Ash’s secrets are revealed. Will she stay? Will Ash and Willow find it in their hearts to forgive each other? “Love is never cut and dry. It’s messy. Confusing. Sometimes it’s ugly and sometimes it’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen.”Goodness! My heart hurts for both Ash and Willow. Ash was in pain – he wants so much to be a good guy, to love fully, to deserve love and happiness, but he is simply incapable of believing in himself. Willow loses everyone she ever loved and is fearful of being lonely. A wise guy told her once not to ever settle and Willow intends to do just that. She will not settle with Ash if he cannot give her 110% no matter how much it hurts her. Their relationship is a roller coaster ride of emotions but I truly believe that the best kind of love is the hardest. Stay is heart-breakingly beautiful – sweet, sexy, flirty, but also angsty and heart wrenching, so I would get some tissues ready. I have to say this book has the sweetest and the best ending ever. Uber swoony, romantic, just PERFECT!!!“Love is always, always for the brave.”If you are new to A.L. Jackson which I highly doubt it - this is the one to read.
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  • Jenny - TotallybookedBlog
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 Stars “Sometimes our greatest gifts are found in our darkest hour.” So we have to admit this book is our first in this series, gasp! Something which is in dire need of rectifying. We were told Stay can be read as a standalone and yes we agree, however we did feel like we were missing out on Sunder’s backstory and the bond between the lads. That’s not saying we didn’t enjoy it, we did, in fact we loved this story, we just think we would have had a more complete connection and understanding o 4.5 Stars “Sometimes our greatest gifts are found in our darkest hour.” So we have to admit this book is our first in this series, gasp! Something which is in dire need of rectifying. We were told Stay can be read as a standalone and yes we agree, however we did feel like we were missing out on Sunder’s backstory and the bond between the lads. That’s not saying we didn’t enjoy it, we did, in fact we loved this story, we just think we would have had a more complete connection and understanding of relationships. On the flipside, we’re now excited to go 1Click the entire series because we have a feeling we will fall in love. We need more reading hours!!!! Who do we need to see about that? We loved how AL Jackson made us disappear into her love story. We were completely drawn in and swept away on a current of emotions and beauty. “Sometimes we get so comfortable behind the protection of our walls, we forget we need to step out from behind them to actually live.” Click here for full review at TBB Available to purchase belowAmazon USAmazon UKCome visit and follow us at:✲ TotallybookedBlog✲ TB on Facebook✲ TB on Twitter✲ TB on Pinterest
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  • Donna ~ The Romance Cover
    January 1, 1970
    Stay (Bleeding Stars #5) by AL Jackson4 stars!!! “Don’t ever mistake broken for weak.” As AL Jackson slowly takes us through the life and love stories of the men in Sunder, finally, it is Ash’s turn. So far in this series, Ash has always come across as the joker, the man who doesn’t take anything seriously and who is living the dream, a true rock star by trade and actions. But there is a lot more to Ash than the cocky, rock star persona he portrays. “I make magic, baby. And you’ve barely even Stay (Bleeding Stars #5) by AL Jackson4 stars!!! “Don’t ever mistake broken for weak.” As AL Jackson slowly takes us through the life and love stories of the men in Sunder, finally, it is Ash’s turn. So far in this series, Ash has always come across as the joker, the man who doesn’t take anything seriously and who is living the dream, a true rock star by trade and actions. But there is a lot more to Ash than the cocky, rock star persona he portrays. “I make magic, baby. And you’ve barely even felt me.” Having been burned in the past, Ash is strictly a no strings attached kinda guy, he plays the field while desperately guarding his heart and emotions. Being famous though draws a lot of women to Ash’s feet and when one tryst goes exponentially wrong Ash finds himself fighting to keep his heart beating rather than fighting to protect it. “Only fools put themselves on the line. Fell in love like it could last. Shouldered the responsibility and burden before it became all too clear they couldn’t stand up under the weight.” Willow was a woman with the weight of the world on her shoulders and a huge desertion complex. Everyone she has loved has left her, family and fiancé, and as such she keeps herself to herself. Willow is a hopeless romantic though and when she does eventually find someone, he will be the one and most definitely the last. Willow’s fiancé was her first and was definitely supposed to meet the last criteria. Willow was extremely talented, running the family business as she patiently and lovingly breathed life into old furniture that was destined for the scrap heap, she worked hard to keep the business afloat. Willow had been hoodwinked, taken for a ride, totally and utterly turned over by someone she should have been able to trust, a lack of judgement that was costing her dearly now. “…until I got to the point where the only thing I was doing was breathing pain. I guess I folded in on myself as my world folded in around me. It was easier to stay there.” When these two meet, it is not in the best of circumstances but when one person saves your life it is only right you save theirs if you can. “…love isn’t for the dumb… Love is always, always for the brave.” As ever, AL Jackson’s words were simply stunning as her unique style of writing flooded the pages with raw emotion as Ash and Willow’s pasts came to light. Ash was a character with a painful past, one that only the Sunder men were privy to and to see all his emotional baggage come to life actually physically hurt. Willow was a woman you just wanted to hug, she was adorable in every way and yet her self-confidence was at an all-time low. Even though these two were opposites you could tell that they just clicked and were just what one and other needed. As ever, that emotional connection was ever present as the reader bears witness to the fall from saviour, to friends to lovers. “Do you know what I think? I think this giving heart is frozen in time. A prisoner to the past.” This story did take a direction that I personally felt wasn’t needed and actually left a little sour taste in my mouth, which I will say is a first for AL Jackson. Sometimes less is more and I just felt that this plot line wasn’t needed at all and didn’t add anything to the story, only a little unbelievability. However, Zee is up next and we know absolutely nothing about him. He is the enigma of the band and I cannot wait to find out what lurks beneath. “I think there’s no chance of her living in a shadow. Not when she’s my sun.” www.theromancecover.com
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  • Rachel K
    January 1, 1970
    I wanted to like it more but the book let me down in two areas - both of which will more than likely not be a big deal for other readers. First person POV is not my preferred narrative but have learnt to deal with it seeing as a lot of books have been written that way. And one of the big reasons for me not really liking it is because often, the hero and heroine's voice sound really similar. Like in this one. No way a rock star who lives and parties hard talks all flowery and shit. It didn't work I wanted to like it more but the book let me down in two areas - both of which will more than likely not be a big deal for other readers. First person POV is not my preferred narrative but have learnt to deal with it seeing as a lot of books have been written that way. And one of the big reasons for me not really liking it is because often, the hero and heroine's voice sound really similar. Like in this one. No way a rock star who lives and parties hard talks all flowery and shit. It didn't work for me and often took me out of the story. But I kept persevering because despite that, it seemed like a good story.But ultimately, I hated how the heroine is linked to the hero's past. I know others won't care but to me it's a bit...well, yuck! (Again, personal preference.) I didn't even want to finish the book because of it but I skimmed to the end. So 4 stars until about 80-85% of the story until the connection between them came out. 1 star for the rest. So I'll settle for 2.5 - 3 stars, I guess.ETA - No. Changed my mind. Can't get past it so it's 2-2.5.
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  • Tijuana *BookTwinsReviews*
    January 1, 1970
    Holy Twist Batman!! I did not see that coming. Ash and Willow’s story took me on an emotional roller coaster ride of epic proportions. It’s a classic tale of opposites attract. The sweet country girl who saves a bad boy rocker. As with previous novels by A. L. Jackson, I adored the writing and emotional punch of the story. Here’s the breakdown:Ash has a painful past. Because of that, he refuses to fall in love and instead becomes the good time guy of the group. After being viciously attacked by Holy Twist Batman!! I did not see that coming. Ash and Willow’s story took me on an emotional roller coaster ride of epic proportions. It’s a classic tale of opposites attract. The sweet country girl who saves a bad boy rocker. As with previous novels by A. L. Jackson, I adored the writing and emotional punch of the story. Here’s the breakdown:Ash has a painful past. Because of that, he refuses to fall in love and instead becomes the good time guy of the group. After being viciously attacked by a group of local men, he is found on the sidewalk by Willow outside her business. She contacts 911 and waits with him until help comes. He drops by her place of business to thank her and is immediately struck by her beauty. The ensuing story is both sweet and completely unexpected. It packs a huge emotional punch. What I loved:A.L. Jackson and this series has my number. It’s everything I love! Fantastic writing, exceptional plot, great characters, and brilliant writing. Willow is so sweet and cute. She’s a struggling business owner who refuses to take advantage of her relationship with a wealthy man. Ash carries a secret pain that threatens to ruin their fledgling relationship. The two of them together – Inspired!The writing is superb. The flow is perfect. The reader can feel the emotions pouring from the pages.Overall, this is another fantastic read from a very talented author. Impressive and enjoyable. I definitely recommend it.Audiobook Review: The audiobook is narrated by two of my favorites: Andi Arndt and Zachary Webber. It's a perfect performance. I highly recommend the audible version.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Stay is the fifth book in the Bleeding Stars’ Series that focuses on the band Sunder and their bassist, Ash. Now I am a stickler for reading order. I have not yet read the prior four books in this series. I love this author, and all I can really say is that I always thought that first book was PNR. Silly, but I thought it when I first saw the cover and never really thought about it again after that. But I was given a chance to read Stay, and knowing now that it was definitely not PNR, I figured, Stay is the fifth book in the Bleeding Stars’ Series that focuses on the band Sunder and their bassist, Ash. Now I am a stickler for reading order. I have not yet read the prior four books in this series. I love this author, and all I can really say is that I always thought that first book was PNR. Silly, but I thought it when I first saw the cover and never really thought about it again after that. But I was given a chance to read Stay, and knowing now that it was definitely not PNR, I figured, why not.This started off a little shaky for me, only because as we start to get the story of Ash and Willow, I felt overwhelmed with so many characters all at once. There was this inside joke that I wasn’t a part of and I really worried that I would get lost in all the chaos and miss out on the story. But I pushed through and pretty quickly all of that faded away and all I was left with was Ash and Willow. Willow is struggling, her store is failing and after losing everything she has become timid when it comes to chasing her own dreams. When she finds a man beaten outside of her store, one look into his blue eyes changes everything. Ash lives a fast life. Fame, fortune and easy women. It wasn’t always like that, but a tormented past has ensured that he never opens himself up to that kind of hurt again. When he steps foot inside of Willow’s store to thank her for saving his life, a promise to give her anything she wants in appreciation of her kindness turns into so much more. But Ash realizes quickly that although Willow is a woman he’d love to get beneath him, she is a woman that deserves only a man who will give her their heart. Something that he just can’t do. But he is just selfish enough to want to keep her close, for as long as he can. As the story develops it is clear to see where this is heading. These two are tempting each other to the brink of insanity. Both getting in deeper and unable to avoid the collision course they’re on. There was this moment towards the last quarter of the story that I found myself unable to put the book down. I loved the way these two fell in love. I loved watching it happen, even knowing that once it hit the fan, it was bound to get ugly. And boy was it devastating when it got ugly. I have this feeling that I will be picking up the prior four books in this series and devouring them so that I am fully caught up by the time the 6th and final in the series.
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  • ✰ Bianca ✰ BJ's Book Blog ✰
    January 1, 1970
    I loved it!So adorable & moving & sexy & sad... just beautiful.BUT - just like with all the books in this series, I kinda hate the writing. Not all of it, well, some parts are a bit too poetic and long, but what I really hate is the way Al Jackson makes the guys talk. They all leave out the I's or the THE's at the beginning of a sentence. And I have NO idea what that is supposed to achieve? It just sounds ridiculous and cheap and weird. But I guess the author had her reasons for want I loved it!So adorable & moving & sexy & sad... just beautiful.BUT - just like with all the books in this series, I kinda hate the writing. Not all of it, well, some parts are a bit too poetic and long, but what I really hate is the way Al Jackson makes the guys talk. They all leave out the I's or the THE's at the beginning of a sentence. And I have NO idea what that is supposed to achieve? It just sounds ridiculous and cheap and weird. But I guess the author had her reasons for wanting to do it like that and unfortunately nobody told her not to do it... Also - a bit of a hard-limit for me...when an author & her editor doesn't know the difference between ONE IN THE SAME and ONE AND THE SAME. And the difference is... ONE IN THE SAME DOES NOT EXIST IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE!!!! Grrrrr. Rant over. No offense intended... ♥ I realllllly loved the book. I was soo looking forward to reading Ash's book and he didn't disappoint. He's just so adorable!!!Can't wait to see what Zee has to tell us in the next book!
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  • Natasha is a Book Junkie
    January 1, 1970
    “Pretend with me… Pretend that you're mine and I'm yours.” It is always with immense excitement that I return to A.L. Jackson’s writing, her impassioned, expressive style forever leaving me more than a little in awe of her extraordinary talent, and time and time again, she proves to me why she remains one of my most respected authors. Utterly seductive and ever-evolving, her prose enthrals the reader with its hypnotic tempo, but it is the electrifying depth of emotion behind her every sentenc “Pretend with me… Pretend that you're mine and I'm yours.” It is always with immense excitement that I return to A.L. Jackson’s writing, her impassioned, expressive style forever leaving me more than a little in awe of her extraordinary talent, and time and time again, she proves to me why she remains one of my most respected authors. Utterly seductive and ever-evolving, her prose enthrals the reader with its hypnotic tempo, but it is the electrifying depth of emotion behind her every sentence that makes us willing captives. In my eyes, Ms. Jackson is both poet and remarkable storyteller, and after every one of her books, I soar away certain of having found a new favourite. Continue reading this review... Follow me on Facebook! | Follow me on Twitter!
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  • Beneath The Covers Blog
    January 1, 1970
    An exceptionally phenomenal and heartrending must read!Stay is a gripping and compelling story about two damage souls, finding that all-consuming connection and acceptance together. The raw emotions and powerful dialogue made this book one of the best books I have ever read. This story has an undefinable pull, immersing you into every aspect of the book. From the very beginning, I was captivated. The character dynamic was utterly intriguing; the more I read, the more I wanted to truly know these An exceptionally phenomenal and heartrending must read!Stay is a gripping and compelling story about two damage souls, finding that all-consuming connection and acceptance together. The raw emotions and powerful dialogue made this book one of the best books I have ever read. This story has an undefinable pull, immersing you into every aspect of the book. From the very beginning, I was captivated. The character dynamic was utterly intriguing; the more I read, the more I wanted to truly know these characters. It felt like I had my own exclusive access into their thoughts and hearts. But I still had so many questions continuously running through my mind. The heart can be just as unyielding as it is accepting. The difficulties displayed in the story, with welcoming honest and pure feelings, settled a deep ache within me. How something that feels so right and perfect, can induce reactions that are completely different; knowing that simply loving someone isn't enough to erase the pain and torment of one's past.Stay is moving, enchanting, sexy, and deeply emotional. If I could rate this book 10 stars, I wouldn't hesitate to do so. A.L. Jackson thoroughly wows her readers with this riveting and passionate love story!*ARC provided in exchange for an honest review.* ~Kelly
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  • Kim
    January 1, 1970
    A.L.Jackson has done it again. Not sure how she continues to rip me to shreds and then build me back up, but the woman has done it once again! This story pulled me in, held me hostage, gave me hope, broke my heart, twisted everything all up, and did it over and over again. She is a masterful storyteller with vivid imagery and poetic words that bleed the intensity of the feelings and the story and their perfect use ties it all back together with the the theme of the book.Ash Evans has always seem A.L.Jackson has done it again. Not sure how she continues to rip me to shreds and then build me back up, but the woman has done it once again! This story pulled me in, held me hostage, gave me hope, broke my heart, twisted everything all up, and did it over and over again. She is a masterful storyteller with vivid imagery and poetic words that bleed the intensity of the feelings and the story and their perfect use ties it all back together with the the theme of the book.Ash Evans has always seemed like the easy-going, reckless, life of the party, and playboy. He loves his friends, but won't let women get close to his heart. But under his image is a man who is broken by his past and his heart is under armor. He feels like he ruins everyone he cares about in some way and is self deprecating and guilty. He thinks if he does not get close then he can't hurt someone. He is full of life, but really terrified of fully living it and feeling it. When Ash is left beaten and in need of saving, Willow Langston is there. She is shy, sweet, honest, and proud. Her past has hurt her too and left her feeling abandoned by those she loved. She is broken but not weak. She has her own spirit and fire, but she has been hiding out licking her wounds from a bad relationship. Her life has been stressful and her dreams just out of her reach. And she had no idea that saving a man would change her life.These two have such chemistry and a connection. It is like two souls colliding. They both have pasts that have shaped who they are and have made them hide their hearts and vulnerability. They are terrified of loving, losing, or hurting someone else. But they both are in need of saving in their own way. Ash sees her as too good for him and worries that he would only ruin her. But he cannot seem to stay away. He wants her and knows he should not taint her, but continues to find ways to keep her in his life...at least temporarily as he keeps telling himself. Pretending is only safe if it is really pretending. There is danger in the pretending becoming real, especially when Ash does not think he can ever allow himself to have it. But the more reality and real feelings begin to sneak into their carefully constructed world, the harder it is to keep their hearts locked down. Ash keeps his secrets hidden deep and does not want to let her see his biggest regrets from his past. His biggest fear is falling in love and hurting someone else. Hers is being alone, lonely, and not being able to love someone. Willow is a girl who needs to find someone who will give her all she needs. Ash is well aware of this, but has no faith that it could ever be him. But the more secrets are hidden, the more potential they have to destroy and hurt. She just wants him to stay. He's afraid he will ruin everything good for her. And when his secrets are laid bare, it has the potential to do just that. And at that point will it be too late to fight for the chance he was afraid to take? Or can he convince her to stay?They are definitely a risk with lots of baggage and reasons to leave and cut their losses, but the reward for staying has the potential to give them everything they ever wanted but were afraid they would never have. This is an emotional, sexy, intense, heart-wrenching story of two people in need of healing, hope, and to truly feel loved. It's about chasing dreams even if they feel out of reach and allowing them to take root. It is told in both of their points of view allowing us to see their innermost turmoil, heartbreak, fear, and strong feelings that are so hard to deny. The secrets are gradually revealed and woven into the story adding suspense and throwing in some surprises and twists. I will admit that I figured out a twist, but the way it played out was still intriguing.The other band members of Sunder and their mates are all part of the story. They provide humor, support, and peer pressure when needed. They are family and care about each other deeply. I enjoy the relationship of Ash and his sister, Edie, even though her story that we learned in Wait is also part of his darker past. I totally fell for Ash. Even though he was a tortured soul, he was also charming, sexy, sweet, protective, and fun. His heart was so big, but he had such fears and underestimated himself. And Willow was such a likable heroine. She was so real and caring, but was strong and was trying to learn to be brave. But they were held back by their own histories and insecurities.A.L. Jackson brought these two complicated and endearing characters to life. She let me see right into their hearts and minds, made me feel it all, and I lived it with them. It is not always easy. There are plenty of challenges and parts that are hard to take, but it is also breathtaking, poignant, and powerful. There is a big gesture in this one that totally blew me away by ramping up the anticipation and then brought tears to my eyes.I have loved each installment so far and am looking forward to Stand. I have even more affection towards Zee after this one. I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review. Follow Me: Reviews by Tammy & Kim | Facebook | Twitter
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  • Jacqueline
    January 1, 1970
    4/5 starsVideo Review: https://youtu.be/dLMfLsVbgHcFound myself really enjoying learning more about these characters and their pasts.Can't wait to continue on with this series I SO need to read the other three I haven't read!If you've been looking for an NA companion series definitely check this out!!*Was sent this in exchange for an honest review*
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  • Nance
    January 1, 1970
    Wow! A.L. Jackson wrote one powerful book! Brilliant! S**t, I didn't see that coming. And, nothing speaks of romance more than a hotter than HOT Rock God, and that's exactly what Sunder's bass player Ash Evans is. He's cocky, the life of the party, and oh so gorgeous! Tattoos. Muscles. And, that glorious hair and eyes with that playful smirk that just gives Willow the chills. She saves his life one night, and he's in debt forever. Willow, though, has not the best life. She lost her sister and he Wow! A.L. Jackson wrote one powerful book! Brilliant! S**t, I didn't see that coming. And, nothing speaks of romance more than a hotter than HOT Rock God, and that's exactly what Sunder's bass player Ash Evans is. He's cocky, the life of the party, and oh so gorgeous! Tattoos. Muscles. And, that glorious hair and eyes with that playful smirk that just gives Willow the chills. She saves his life one night, and he's in debt forever. Willow, though, has not the best life. She lost her sister and her mom is sick. Everyone she loves leaves her, and it's heartbreaking to read. She's a very kind and confident women. It's just sad to read her sorrowful pain of loneliness. The more these two get to know each other, though, the more they find themselves falling deeper and deeper. Willow wants the "happily ever after" that comes with the love of your man and family. But, Ash says he's no good. Everything he touches goes up in flames. He says, though, that he will "pretend" with Willow and show her what it's really like to feel. Will these two really believe in each other and take that forever chance???OMG! I couldn't put this down, which I was a little reluctant to read because for the life of me, I just couldn't get into Austin's book (maybe I'll give it another chance soon). But, this one really gutted me, and I just couldn't believe what I was reading. The writing was exceptional and had such great characters. The guys in the band and their women still play a huge roll in each other's lives. Friends for life. Humor. Romance. Everything you could want in a novel. I loved Willow and Ash's love story. Looking forward to the last book of the series, Zee's story.
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  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    "Love is never cut and dry. It's messy. Confusing. Sometimes it's ugly and sometimes it's the most beautiful thing you've ever seen." "But no matter how much it might hurt, it can never change the fact that it's real. It's worth fighting for. And the real kind of love will always come back to you.""Chasing dreams always came with a risk. Dreams that scattered and blew and so often seemed out of reach. But eventually, those dreams? They settled and took root.They found the one place they were mea "Love is never cut and dry. It's messy. Confusing. Sometimes it's ugly and sometimes it's the most beautiful thing you've ever seen." "But no matter how much it might hurt, it can never change the fact that it's real. It's worth fighting for. And the real kind of love will always come back to you.""Chasing dreams always came with a risk. Dreams that scattered and blew and so often seemed out of reach. But eventually, those dreams? They settled and took root.They found the one place they were meant to Stay."There is so much I want to say about Stay, but I honestly feel that this is a story that needs to be experienced. Stay is a story that you just need to allow yourself to get lost in and consumed by the beautiful story this author has to tell. What I can tell you is to be prepared. You emotions are about to be taken on one heck of a ride. There will be lots of ups and downs. Happy moments. Sad moments. Moments that just tug at your heart and make you ache for our characters. There will be moments that will just make your heart swoon and fall head over heels. And then there will be twists that will shock you and test our characters to the very core. But, I promise you, the journey will be so worth it in the end. A.L. Jackson does not disappoint and once again delivers a special and unforgettable love story.*Full review to come on blog tour date*
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  • Christy P
    January 1, 1970
    5 amazing stars! “Love is always, always for the brave.”Two lost souls meet during an unfortunate incident. Ash thought Willow saved his life but as they both begin to dig deeper they find that they just may be saving each other. Willow had been through some very traumatic events in her life and Ash had completely shut down ever being good enough for love. The two decide to pretend to be what the other needed but when the smoke cleared; would they find they were exactly where they needed to be? 5 amazing stars! “Love is always, always for the brave.”Two lost souls meet during an unfortunate incident. Ash thought Willow saved his life but as they both begin to dig deeper they find that they just may be saving each other. Willow had been through some very traumatic events in her life and Ash had completely shut down ever being good enough for love. The two decide to pretend to be what the other needed but when the smoke cleared; would they find they were exactly where they needed to be? The twists in this story literally made my stomach hurt. The way AL Jackson writes leaves you feeling everything deep down in your soul. This is an amazing story about two beautifully broken people learning how to live again.
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  • AJ
    January 1, 1970
    “Even wild souls need a place to rest.” 4.5 stars!Ever since I started my journey with the boys of rock band, Sunder, I have been eagerly awaiting Ash’s book, and OMG it was worth the wait! Gorgeously emotional, heartachingly romantic, and beautifully written, this book sucked me in from start to finish and I absolutely loved it!Ash Evans is the fun-loving party boy of Sunder. The prankster who always has a joke, the one who always has a willing woman hanging off his arm, and the one who doesn’ “Even wild souls need a place to rest.” 4.5 stars!Ever since I started my journey with the boys of rock band, Sunder, I have been eagerly awaiting Ash’s book, and OMG it was worth the wait! Gorgeously emotional, heartachingly romantic, and beautifully written, this book sucked me in from start to finish and I absolutely loved it!Ash Evans is the fun-loving party boy of Sunder. The prankster who always has a joke, the one who always has a willing woman hanging off his arm, and the one who doesn’t take his life too seriously, enjoying his fame and fortune and all of the perks that it brings. But his partying catches in a horrific way when he hooks up with the wrong woman and is set upon by a group of guys, and is beaten badly,Willow is the one who finds Ash beaten and bloody and laying semi-conscious on the ground. She saved him that night, her very presence soothing him, and when Ash shows up at her store to thank her, a spark flares to life which takes them down a road neither of them were expecting. “The only think I know is I can’t stop thinkin’ about you. Wanting you.”“You don’t even know me.”“Yet here we are.” Willow’s life has been a series of one loss after another. She is a smart, sensible girl who runs a store that was her mother’s, and is now hers, and she has simple dreams of a family – a husband, children and a happy life. But she’s been horribly betrayed by love in the past and her dreams seem so far out of reach. Ash recognises that Willow is broken, but he is intrigued by the brave, beautiful woman and is undeniably attracted to her, and as he gets to know her, he wants more. But he has no interest in love – his past experiences having destroyed his heart and left him forever changed. So with the best of intentions, he proposes to Willow that they pretend that they are fine, that they can spend time together and be together without getting their hearts involved, at least for the few months that he is in town before he has to return to LA. “I want to own you, Peaches. I want to awaken what's been lying dormant. Bring it to life. Watch you glow.” Willow’s greatest fear is being alone, and there’s something about the gorgeous, charismatic man who has just walked into her life that she can’t resist. When he promises her that he wants to show her how beautiful she is, and how much she deserves something special, she can’t resist him when he offers to give it to her – even if it is just for a little while. “Pretend with me.” What follows is a beautifully developing relationship. Ash and Willow become true friends who slowly but eagerly explore more, falling for each other though they never intended to, and I loved every moment of it! Their honesty and sincerity with each other is absolutely gorgeous and everything that happens between them feels natural and so, so right. And amidst the jokes, laughter, sweet moments and epic sexual tension, I fell right along with them. “Peaches.” He sounded almost confused, as if he couldn’t make sense of this, either.At the contact, I gasped, my hands twisting into fists in the fabric of his shirt. The words left me before I could stop them. “What are you doing to me?” You get the feeling that they are both stunned by the intensity of what is between them, but they are both powerless to stop it, and it creates a wonderful sense of inevitability for them which I loved. “What have you done to me?” He stared across at me, tone demanding. “Tell me, Willow. Tell me you want me. Tell me I’m not goin’ crazy. Tell me this isn’t all just on me. Tell me that every time I touch you, it feels like something more.” The big, heartfelt moments between them made me swoon and left me breathless, and the emotions are intense as they fall deeper and deeper. But how can these two broken souls have a future together when they are both fighting so adamantly against it? And is what they have found together strong enough to heal them and allow them to move on when the past is so much darker than they ever realised? “You’re killin’ me, darlin’.”“And you’re saving me.” This is such beautiful book. A.L. Jackson writes wonderfully emotional stories, and she’s done an amazing job with Ash and Willow. They are two characters that you cannot help but love, and I was cheering for them and their happy ending from the moment I met them. They have a lot they need to overcome, and their healing does not come without pain and heartache, but as the truth of the past is fully revealed, I could absolutely understand where the characters were coming from, and it made everything they were feeling for each other so much more intense. “Sometimes our greatest gifts are found in our darkest hour.” What if I want you to stay? Fans of the series will love that we get to see all of the Sunder boys and their families – I love that we get to see the progression of their lives, and the fact that even with the changes they’ve all been through, they are still very much a family unit. I also loved the little glimpse we got of Zee, and I can’t wait for his book up next. The book ends beautifully, and I finished it with a big, satisfied grin on my face. “Love is never cut and dry. It’s messy. Confusing. Sometimes it’s ugly and sometimes it’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen.” Absolutely beautiful, I loved it – 4.5 stars.
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  • Gitte TotallyBookedBlog
    January 1, 1970
    **4.5 Stars**‘We bled with the stars. Where they streaked and wept across the endless sky. Infinite. Burning bright right before they quickly burned out. Ashes.’So we have to admit this book is our first in this series, gasp! Something which is in dire need of rectifying. We were told Stay can be read as a standalone and yes we agree, however we did feel like we were missing out on Sunder’s backstory and the bond between the lads. That’s not saying we didn’t enjoy it, we did, in fact we loved th **4.5 Stars**‘We bled with the stars. Where they streaked and wept across the endless sky. Infinite. Burning bright right before they quickly burned out. Ashes.’So we have to admit this book is our first in this series, gasp! Something which is in dire need of rectifying. We were told Stay can be read as a standalone and yes we agree, however we did feel like we were missing out on Sunder’s backstory and the bond between the lads. That’s not saying we didn’t enjoy it, we did, in fact we loved this story, we just think we would have had a more complete connection and understanding of relationships. On the flipside, we’re now excited to go 1Click the entire series because we have a feeling we will fall in love. We need more reading hours!!!! Who do we need to see about that? We loved how AL Jackson made us disappear into her love story. We were completely drawn in and swept away on a current of emotions and beauty. “Sometimes our greatest gifts are found in our darkest hour.” Stay had everything we love to see in this type romance, it literally ticked all the boxes. It was sweet, sexy, emotional, reflective, vulnerable, passionate and so very beautiful. A sweet heroine whose heart is so big it literally just embraces everyone and everything with heartfelt love whilst seeking that very thing out to fulfil her own dream and wishes. Willow was a beautiful character, she endeared herself to us as she was so genuine and caring whilst having a feisty streak when needed. Nothing seemed over the top nor false. She was just a wonderful heroine. “Sometimes we get so comfortable behind the protection of our walls, we forget we need to step out from behind them to actually live.” Willow meets the bad boy serial philanderer, Ash- from the high profile band Sunder, under distressing and violent circumstances. An immediate connection and intriguing recognition is formed, for both Willow and Ash. Why is this connection so strong? “Just…let me feel something. Something different. Something better. Something good.” Now, we’ve not been privy to Ash’s rock star lifestyle until now but we soon got the idea, this man is hiding a tragic secret which is the root cause as to why he acts the way he does. Despite his cad-ish ways, it was clear to us from the start that this man was about so much more. We could tell from his inner voice, his friendships and his extremely protective side. Not only is this man a sight to behold, he has the heart to match. “Even if I wanted to hold you…keep you…it’s all wrong, baby. It’s all wrong because I’m wrong. I’m ugly in all those places people can’t see. That’s the place I can’t let you go. Won’t let you go. You deserve so much better than what’s waiting there.” The journey of Ash and Willow is a twisted path of tragedy, loss, hope, despair, dreams and love. If you wish upon a dream you must act upon your heart. We loved it! And we’re not pretending…..Available to purchase belowAmazon USAmazon UKCome visit and follow us at:✲ TotallybookedBlog✲ TB on Facebook✲ TB on Twitter✲ TB on Pinterest
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Arc provided in exchange for an honest review. I loved Willow and Ash; I loved their personalities and how they balanced each other. I sometimes felt that the lyrical writing distracted from their story. I also guessed the big secret early and felt it was revealed too late with too little discussion. I was very satisfied with the ending.
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