Monday, September 9, 2013

Review, Interview and Giveaway: Out of Play by Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry


Rock star drummer Bishop Riley doesn't have a drug problem. Celebrities—especially ones suffering from anxiety—just need a little help taking the edge off sometimes. After downing a few too many pills, Bishop wakes up in the hospital facing an intervention. If he wants to stay in the band, he’ll have to detox while under house arrest in Seldon, Alaska. 

Hockey player Penny Jones can't imagine a life outside of Seldon. Though she has tons of scholarship offers to all the best schools, the last thing she wants is to leave. Who'll take care of her absentminded gramps? Not her mother, who can’t even be bothered to come home from work, let alone deal with their new tenants next door.

Penny’s not interested in dealing with Bishop’s crappy attitude, and Bishop’s too busy sneaking pills to care. Until he starts hanging out with Gramps and begins to see what he’s been missing. If Bishop wants a chance with the fiery girl next door, he’ll have to admit he has a problem and kick it. Too bad addiction is hard to kick…and Bishop’s about to run out of time

4 star review by Jen Skewes

Jolene Perry and Nyrae Dawn have done it again with Out of Play.  I loved Dizzy which was also written by these two fabulous authors so I was so excited to read this one.  Out of Play is a wonderful story of a female hockey star and a young bad boy rocker.   A perfect combination.

Bishop Riley is a very young and very famous drummer for a very popular band.  But he has some issues with anxiety, crowds, and stress which only causes more problems for him.  He uses drugs as his coping mechanism, and finds himself waking up one day in the hospital after a drug overdose.  His mother, band mates and manager want him to go to rehab, but since Bishop is in denial he refuses.  Instead he reluctantly agrees to go away to Alaska with his manager's brother, Gary, to sober up and kick his habit.  Alaska isn't exactly Bishop's idea of a fun place to be, but he needs to make the best of his time there.  But things begin to change once he meets his new neighbor/landlord, Penny Jones.

Penny is the only female hockey player on her team and most of her friends are boys.  And while most of the boys around her have a thing for Penny her heart has only belonged to one of them.  But unfortunately for her, he is her best friend and sees her as nothing more than a friend.  Penny is fun, and snarky and says what she wants.  She is trying to find her own way and decide where her future will be and which college she will go to and play hockey for.  Staying in Alaska and playing on an all boys team is where Penny belongs, but the people around her think otherwise.  Trying to decide where to go to school and dealing with the fact that she thinks she is love with her best friend who has a girlfriend, the last thing Penny wants to to deal with is the new tenants next door. But she knows that she has to be nice and deal with it, with him, Bishop Riley.  

Penny and Bishop may not get along in the beginning but as time goes on they realize how much of a connection they have. There is something about Penny that makes Bishop want to get to know her and spend time with her.  When he is with her he wants to be a better person.  He wants to get over his issues and the drugs.  Penny has her own issues that she is dealing with but things start to change for her when she is with Bishop.  He seems to get her like no one else does, not even Mitch, her best friend.  But Bishop is still hiding something from Penny.  What happens when the truth comes out? 

I loved Bishop and Penny's story.  Out of Play is told in alternating POV between Bishop and Penny which I loved.  I loved seeing Bishop's side of the story.  His fight to beat his addiction, his everyday struggle to become a better person.  Seeing it from his point of view, made it feel real.   You felt the emotions right along with him.  

I loved Penny.  She was a strong female character who knows what she wants and hates to lose.  She had a Bishop understood her in ways most people didn't and that scared her on some level.  I loved the addition of the supporting characters like Gramps (Penny's grandfather) and Gary.  It wasn't just Penny who helped Bishop with his issues, both Gramps and Gary played a part as well and it was great to see his relationship with the both of them develop.  Penny and Bishop were perfect together and their story was one that will make you laugh, smile, cry and touch your heart.  It is about two people trying to find themselves and in the process they both found love.  Jolene Perry and Nyrae Dawn did a fantastic job with this story.  This is a must read!

Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry are both fantastic writers and together they have created another wonderful story.  Three Chicks had the opportunity to ask them a few question in regards to the writing process when working on a project together.  Here is what they had to say.

First, we would like to congratulate you on another fantastic job with Out of Play. We loved it!

How did the two of you decide to team up as authors?

Nyrae: We were already good friends and had written a book together before, because we thought it sounded fun. We talked about doing another one but we weren’t sure what. I’d had an old story idea about a teenage band member who was sent to a small town where no one knew who he was. We decided on Alaska because Jolene lives there and the awesomeness that is Penny came all from Jolene.

One of the things that we have always been curious about when two authors collaborate together is the process behind it. Do you work together on the concept and storyline and then take it from there? How do you decide who will write which point of view...?

Jolene: Nyrae writes such awesome guys, that her writing Bishop was an easy decision. We worked together on the concept. I’m a character first writer, and Nyrae is a storyline first kind of writer, but it actually really helped us work on the characterization and storyline together.

Can you tell us who wrote which part in the story?

Nyrae: I wrote Bishop and Jolene wrote Penny. We each had “veto power” over our own person. For example if I wrote something in one of Bishop’s chapters that Jolene didn’t feel was authentic to Penny she would change a line of dialogue or whatever the situation called for and I would do the same for Bishop in her chapters. But mostly when you read the book, Bishop chapters were primarily me and Penny’s were primarily Jolene.

We loved Dizzy, but you took Out of Play in a completely different direction that dealt with deeper issues such as addiction.  Was there any research that went into this book and how did it affect the writing process?

Jolene: We did a lot of research. Way more than we’d ever use. The nice thing about addiction and alzheimers (the two areas we did the most research in), is that the experiences are so individual. So, it was a matter of taking that research and then applying it to the characters we’d created.

We love the dual points of view and how both books flow so nicely. How do you make it work, with the timeline of the story, when each of you are writing different parts?

Nyrae: It works because we take it one chapter at a time. I write a chapter, then send that to Jo who reads it before writing her chapter. Then I will read her chapter before starting my next one. Jolene and I love to have our characters play off of one another. We laugh so much while writing together so I think that fun comes out in the book, and hopefully helps with the flow.

Are there moments where you have disagreements as to which way the story is going and if so how do you work to overcome them?

Jolene: Everyone asks this question, lol. We’ve never disagreed on a plot point. The thing is, we’re both pretty laid back people, and we both decided in the beginning that all collaborations are done for fun. As long as its fun, we keep going, when it’s no longer fun, we stop. It was always fun. I’ve never laughed so hard while writing a book.

How does writing with a partner compare to writing solo? Is it a longer and harder process?

Nyrae: It actually goes faster for the writing and slower for the editing, IMO. I believe Jolene and I wrote the first draft of OUT OF PLAY in something crazy like 21 days or something. But, it’s because Jo and I both become obsessive about projects when we’re in the zone and we both write fast. Plus, like I said, we like to have our characters play off of one another, so when I would get a chapter from her, I was so excited to have Bishop do something that I had to write ASAP.

What can we look forward to from the both of you in the future; both individually and together?

Nyrae: I think Jolene and I definitely need to come up with another book to write together soon. At the time, we don’t have anything specific planned. Individually I have MASQUERADE out in January. It’s the third book in my New Adult series called, The Games series. In May RUSH is out.

Jolene: Oh. I know Nyrae and I will write together again. We love it. And since we both write fast, we’ll probably decide to it one day and have a rough draft two weeks later. I have THE SUMMER I FOUND YOU coming out in hardback in March 2014 from AW Teen, and THE HAPPINESS OF JOY coming in fall 2014. I’m nearly done with another New Adult involving a just-out-of-rehab and writer’s blocked rockstar that will be published under the pen name Mia Josephs. The title of that book is SOLO, and should be out before Christmas.

Out of all the books you have written, together and separately, which male character is your favorite and which female character can you relate to the most?
Nyrae: That is such a hard question. I love all my boys for different reasons. I will always be partial to Adrian from FAƇADE because he’s the most broken boy I’ve ever written. I love Bishop because he’s so flawed, and a little angry. I think it’s pretty obvious I’m a fan of flawed characters

Jolene: I love Jameson from NIGHT SKY. He was my favorite guy I’ve written. Penny is hands down, easily my favorite female lead, but the one I relate to the most is Kate from THE SUMMER I FOUND YOU. She has these awkward blurts of honesty (totally me) and feels mostly average in everything she does (totally me), so I love her to pieces.


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