Monday, October 7, 2013

Blog Tour: Irresistible Refrain by Michelle Mankin

Book Title: Irresistible Refrain - Tempest Series (Book #1)
Author: Michelle Mankin
Release date: October 3, 2013
Genre: New Adult


Two years ago everything changed for the remaining members of the Seattle rock band Tempest.

Two years is a long time.

Too long to keep on remembering.

Not nearly long enough to forget.

In trouble with nowhere else to go songstress Lace Lowell seeks refuge with the band during their stop in New York City. It's a risky move for her because they are both there, two impossibly good looking men whose lives are inseparably entwined with hers. One who bruised her heart and one who smashed it into pieces.
Warren “War” Jinkins, the mercurial lead singer of Tempest, has always had a thing for Lace.

But then again so does his best friend and band mate.

Bryan “Bullet” Jackson, the sinfully handsome tat-sleeved lead guitarist, has a bad boy reputation befitting his nickname. For the past two years Bullet’s had a rule with the groupies: one time, never twice, leave ‘em satisfied, but always leave ‘em.

Two guys, one woman, and a host of dark secrets all together within the tight confines of a tour bus as the group travels cross country.

Can the past be forgotten and buried?

Will friendships prevail?

Or will the three of them succumb to seductive impulses too addictive to resist?

** Irresistible Refrain is a gritty rock and roll tale intended for mature readers seventeen and

up. Contains sexual situations, strong language, and drug use. **

4 star review by Lisa Kane

Bryan “Bullet” Jackson is the lead guitarist for Tempest, the opening act for Avery Jones and Marcus Anthony’s band Brutal Strength.  One day Lace Lowell shows up on their tour bus out of the blue. She was the former girlfriend of War, the band’s lead singer. She’s the sister of the band’s rhythm guitarist Dizzy. She came back to be with the band when her relationship with Martin, a really bad guy, ended. And ended badly judging by the bruising on her face. Bryan sees her and his heart drops. But she was War’s girl and obviously something is going on with them again or she wouldn’t be here.

Growing up, Bryan, War, Dizzy and Lace were the best of friends. Dizzy and Lace had a crack whore for a mother who neglected her kids and did some horrible things to Lace. She grew up feeling useless and had no sense of self-worth. As she got older, Lace became a real beauty and Bryan was attracted to her. 

Unfortunately, for him, War saw her at the same time. Sensing Bryan’s interest he reminded him of how he covered for Bryan and took the fall that landed him in juvie hall for something Bryan did. Bryan backs off out of respect for their friendship and those memories. 

There wasn’t a day that went by that Bryan didn’t regret that decision. War and Lace dated and Bryan sat on the sidelines. One of the best nights of his life was getting to take Lace to the prom when War got sick. Both of them realized they had feelings for each other, but Bryan promised War he wouldn’t go there and a promise is a promise. 

That breathy voice of hers shot right to my groin. Even hung over and recently satiated my dick came right to attention. Clamoring after what I could never have. What I could never have. The Woman War loved. 

The band eventually got a following. Lace had a decent voice and played for the band. Something went down that resulted in the guys getting a contract that didn’t include Lace. She left and her life spiraled out of control. She met up with Martin, got hooked on heroin and got sucked into a vortex of disasters. Martin pushed her too far, told her to do things and cross lines she wouldn’t cross and she bolted.

Present day-she is with War and is still hooked on heroin. These two feed their mutual addictions. As much as Bryan tries to help Lace, she doesn’t think she has a problem. War constantly makes it known that Bryan needs to back off, Lace is with him.

Lace still has a voice and it looks like maybe she will have a career in music after all. She knows she has to clean up her act. She has a chance to have her dreams come true. For years she has fought her feelings for Bryan but doesn’t feel worthy of him. And then there are the drugs…

“My mom asked about you last night. She wondered why you and War didn’t go out with all the rest of us.”
“Tell her I’m sorry.” I swallowed, I couldn’t tell him the truth, that what we’d been doing his mother wouldn’t approve of. That I wasn’t the good little girl his mom remembered. That I didn’t deserve to be around them.

This book stirred strong emotions in me. Lace’s drug use is so excessive and hardcore that I found myself frustrated with her. She had so many people willing to help her and opportunities right there to change her life, but like so many addicts, sometimes people have to hit rock bottom before they can get back up. As much as I respect friendship and promises, Bryan sacrificed his own happiness time and again with Lace because of War. And War…he was an enabler that held onto Lace through their mutual drug use. Irresistible Refrain will certainly stimulate strong emotions; some pleasant and some not so much. There is not a whole lot of sex, but there are so many sexual desires percolating between Bryan and Lace, it’s almost palpable. Lace’s abuse as a child resulted in her self- abuse as an adult. Seeing her rise above her own history and finding herself and her own potential made for a wonderful read.     


I seriously contemplated telling her right then and there that she was the only woman that had

ever been important to me when I heard the door slide open behind us.

“Guys it’s four fucking a.m.” Voice gruff with disapproval, War’s appearance brought our

intimate predawn reunion to an end. Looking wan and strung out, the lead singer of Tempest

shuffled into view wearing a pair of red boxers and scratched his bare chest. “Come on back to

bed, babe.” He held out his hand to her while shooting me an irritated glance.

She patted my knee and I took the cue to scoot out of the booth ahead of her so she could exit.

War threw a proprietary arm around her shoulders as soon as her bare feet hit the floor. “Night,


“Night, Asshole.”

War gave me the finger before he closed the door.

I stared at it for a long time. Nothing had fucking changed. Twenty thousand people screaming

my name during my guitar solo at the Garden, plus two twins, but none of that mattered to me.

Not when my best friend had the woman I’d always wanted.

About the author

Michelle Mankin is a young/new adult romance writer as well as a self-proclaimed giant…inside her own mind.

For many years, she toiled in the insurance industry as an underwriter. Somehow, the boredom didn’t kill her, and the hours of looking at facts and figures provided ample time for her mind to wander.

Love Evolution, Love Revolution, and the latest novel, Love Resolution are rock ‘n roll romances. The first is based on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, the second on Much Ado About

Nothing, and the third on The Tempest. The first three books in the Black Cat Records series combine the plot underpinnings of the famous playwright with the drama, excitement, and the indisputable sexiness of the rock ‘n roll industry.

When she is not putting her daydreams down on paper, you can find Michelle traveling the world with her family. Sometimes for real and sometimes just for pretend as she takes the children to school and back. 

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