Wednesday, August 20, 2014

**Blogger 'Duel' Review ~ Rock Chick Reckoning ~ Kristen Ashley**

I know I've said this before but BEST.BET.EVER!! Robyn and I have had so much fun with our Rock Chick Chats - which were the result of my losing a bet on the Super Bowl.  I can't believe this crazy ride is almost over. Good thing there's plenty more football to bet on and Kristen Ashley to read! ;)  

 So anyway, here's our Rock Chick Chat on Rock Chick Reckoning. :)

***

Rock Chick Reckoning (Rock Chick, #6)Rock Chick Reckoning by Kristen Ashley
Rock Chick #6
Release Date: November 13, 2011
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance

Synopsis
Stella's the lead singer and lead guitarist of The Blue Moon Gypsies and Stella used to be Mace's girl. Mace broke up with her, though, and the loss of him rocked her world. But Stella gets a call, late at night (again) from one of the members of her crazy band. She has to go play clean up (again) and runs into Mace and a shed load of police, and ends up getting shot.

Mace finds he doesn't like it much that his ex-girlfriend got shot right in front of him but it's worse. A very bad man has thrown down the gauntlet and all the Rock Chicks are in the firing line. Stella doesn't want Mace to be the one to keep her alive, but she has no choice. Mainly because Mace isn't giving her one.


***Rock Chick Reckoning Chat***

I'm having trouble swallowing for the lump in my throat. Mace...Robyn he may just knock Luke and Hank out. This man - I can't even say right now what it is about him. But he has me melting all over the place. And I'm loving the changing of POVs...are you? I like getting Mace's POV a lot. And I adore Stella. ADORE.HER! Yes, thank goodness for Rock Chick. I'm lucky too, girlie! Meeting you was serendipitous! Rock Chick is the bonus!! ;) And I'm sooo glad we have more KA to move on to.

Okay, I'll email more thoughts on Mace & Stella in the morning. I have the need...the need to read! ;) <-- like my spin on a movie quote?!? I'm a dork...I know! ;)

I laughed at the movie quote, plus you picked the best movie to quote!! I can quote Top Gun until you want to hit me with something. I am LOVING the dual POVs! The first change up I stopped three paragraphs in and started over. "What, can't be. Really? I love you Kristen Ashley!" Mace is a total sweet spot hottie. First off, he messed up with Stella. That makes him not quite the underdog, but something...he has to prove himself to Stella. And I love her too! I love how much she cared/cares about Mace. And I just know you are all about Juno! What an opener, right? So good. 

Okay, I have to put the oldest to bed so I can stay up too late reading. No movie quote for me because I'm lame.

Wow! I so enjoy that KA gave us story arcs over the entirety of the series. (well, thus far) Not only do we get the Rock Chick/Hot Bunch madness, and whatever issues each Rock Chick is carrying around at the moment said madness begins, but we also have the arc of bad Sid. Bad, crazy Sid.

The action in this one has been different - no bar brawls (yet) - and that's one thing that gives it a different feel. I love KA for giving us all the different POVs so we're getting a chance to catch up with the other couples in a more intimate (not that kind of intimate ;) way. The feel in this one is also different because Mace did fuck up with Stella - he admitted it - and he does have to win her back. But she has to work at it too. AND that Mace's life/past is affecting Stella is different too. A life/past she doesn't know too much about. I was with Eric in that I couldn't believe Mace & Stella had been so into each other and not known so many things about the other.

I LOVE Floyd!! Stella has a father-figure in him and that's good because she needs a parent to tell her to get her shit together. I'm also so impressed with the fact that KA can introduce new characters in each book, expanding an already fantastic cast, seamlessly. Getting The Gypsies, Eric, Mace's dad, even the dude that owns the Palladium added in makes the overall story so robust.

Oh and Stella's description of Evergreen and The Little Bear was so spot on. The fight scene in front of The Little Bear was so 'real' - I could see it all happening in my mind with her accurate description of the wood sidewalk and railing and twisty mountain road. :) We are sooo hanging out there next year when you're here! ;)

I don't know how far you are - I've been up since 5 reading! *ha* But...after Brody's interesting diatribe on all the 'links' he found on Mace's dad, I admired the calm that came over Mace. We don't know what's going on in his head (yet) but he's just so cool, calm and collected about it. What do you think about the info reveal about Mace's dad??

Stella was pissing me off - I don't understand - yet - why she is the way she is with the exception of what Mace did to her. And wow, I was fist-pumping over her speech to Mace when that all came out. But anyway, she was pissing me off. Like Shirleen said, is it really so hard to just give in to a Hot Bunch guy?? And then after Stella met with Mace's dad? What did you think about that? That jackass! And what Stella did to Mace after that? Shee-it!!

Oh, I just had a thought...dare I say, an epiphany? Stella and Mace's problems all stem from a lack of communication, no? As we've seen so far, Stella communicates through her music. So maybe she was always communicating - maybe not all the stuff (read: family history) that needed to be said - but her feelings anyway. And maybe Mace just wasn't listening??

Sorry this is mostly me rambling over my thoughts...what are you thinking???

***
Oh, oh!!

What did you think of the scene at Fortnum's between the Rock Chicks? If you're not there yet, you'll know it when you get there...

And how much did you love the scene between Roxie and Hank??? *swoon* Again, if you're not there yet, you'll know it when you get there...

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Oh, oh, oh...and yes, I adore Juno. :) It's great that she's so accepting of Mace in her home...just like he belongs there. ;)

You know I can't wait to hit The Little Bear with you! And I'm with Shirleen too, what's so bad about a Hot Bunch guy being into you? Grrh. But I know we both love each Rock Chick enough to care about whatever is keeping her from accepting fate. You are so right about how amazing Kristen Ashley is at creating characters. Look at Smithie, grumpy strip club owner and I get giddy every time he appears because he's so much fun! 

This one has a totally different vibe. There's a lot more relationship tension with Mace messing up. Stella messing up. Outside factors/assholes (Mace's dad) messing them up. Mace is also such a different Hot Bunch guy. He's an Alpha for sure, but he doesn't have the smooth control of the other alphas. He loses his temper and makes mistakes with Stella. She does the same thing back. This is the least composed couple of all time! And I love it. 

Stella's "meet" with Mace's dad was so messed up. I hate him. He's a bad guy and I don't see me ever warming up to him, but KA has a way of softening the edges of her bad guys so she can play mind games with us. Look at Darius and Hector. Mmm, Hector and whatever rich woman who threw him to the side. I want to see Hector's slashed insides before all the mending.

I haven't laughed as much or cried as much, but I'm still just as addicted to the read. I want Mace and Stella to work it out and I don't want anyone hurt. I don't want KA to rip out my heart with someone dying either! 

What do you think about the songs this time around now that we have a Rock Chick who actually plays music?

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I freaking loved the scene at Fortnum's because all that bickering was so much fun. They are not the troop from Strawberry Shortcake (John makes me read the books over and over). They call each other out. I just loved Ally throwing a fit! That was so good! I loved Tod throwing a fit too. And Daisy in the beginning with the donuts. She was so put out and she's hard to ruffle unless you make her car explode.

Swoon is the word for anything Hank-related. That was just right for the two of them. 

***
I finished the book! Let me know if you have/when you have. I stopped midway through the epilogue because what the heck! I like a glimpse into the future at the end of a series, not when there are 2 more books. I've decided to return to it after the last book, which I guess will be Ally's book. 


Smithie is awesome! I love the scene where he comes in and scares a certain someone into dropping their agenda. That was righteous, as Ally would say. And Duke works his way further and further into my heart with each book. Geez, what he did for Stella... She thinks she has 'shitty bad luck' but she's managed to gather quite a few men (Duke and Floyd in particular) that are much, much better fathers to her than her biological one. And Tex...he STILL steals the scene whenever he's present. Talk about grumpy. I LOVE him!!

This one does has a different vibe with all the messing up both Mace and Stella do. I like how you said they're the least 'composed' couple so far. That's so true. That scene where Mace is feeling badly for not controlling it - I smiled at Stella throwing his words back at him..."you said you needed to learn to handle me with care. Well, I need to learn the same thing." That was some awesome. These two both have some pretty big demons and maybe Mace didn't officially declare a war on Stella's like she did his, but they're both doing a fine job battling each other's demons. 

Nope, I'm never gonna like Preston Mason either. No way. No how. Not gonna happen. ;) 

Hector...yeah, I'm warming to him alright. *ha* He's funny. I could tell he was feeling it for Stella but he's not like the other Hot Bunch guys. He may have been saying something with his eyes and body language but he never moved in on Stella. I'm quite looking forward to meeting the woman who would toss him. Crazy woman, I say!

I haven't laughed or cried as much with this one either. Although I have kept a lump in my throat. :) KA is simply amazing. I've said it before but I'm always impressed how she can give a different vibe, a different feel with each book. Oh, and she did a tremendous job of keeping all the characters true in this one. With the switch in POV, I was impressed with how she kept their voice the same. <--not the right word, but you understand, right?

And the music....oh the freaking music!! I love having a Rock Chick who is actually a musician. And how she uses her music to communicate her feelings is fabulous! I mean, we also listen to music to suit our moods, right? Stella does too - and she plays it that was as well. I've gone around singing LOTS of Journey. ;) And I think I can hear her voice too. Man, I hope there's a really good band playing at The Little Bear when you're here next year. :) Are you liking the music? I love every single one of the bands/songs that Stella has played. And it's adorable that she believes she and Mace are meant to be together because they listen to the same music. ;)

***

I loved watching Ally have her fit, too. Yep, it's gonna be so much fun seeing her fall. And seeing her friends tell her 'I told you so.' And Daisy getting flustered over getting to serve breakfast was hilarious. Yep, you don't take away a Southern woman's right to serve a big Southern breakfast! *haha*

Yeah, Hank still makes me swoon, too. *sigh*

***

​Did you melt over the keys? That was a swoon-worthy moment when Mace came home. *sigh* 

I'm thrilled both Mace & Stella are putting everything out there. It says a lot about the depth of feelings they have for one another. Stella talks about seeing Mace's walls in his eyes...but he's not the only one who has  protective walls. 

Omigosh! Did you love the scene where Stella has had it with being walked all over? The things she said to George (he's a douche, and I hate that word) and to Preston. I was fist pumping and cheering her on! That was fan-freakin-tastic! By the way, Stella's parents could win 'Worst Parents Ever' but Mace's dad​ would give them a run for their money. 

I'm right there with you about Duke. Every book he roots himself deeper and deeper into my heart. Normally I don't enjoy stories where the main couple can't get it together and we have to watch all the drama of them breaking up, making up, and breaking up again, but I fell in love with Mace and Stella so when they pissed me off (equally), I just kept rooting for them to get over themselves. For me this installment is the relationship story. The others had a good mix of mystery, action, and humor, but this one was all about two people who would live the rest of their lives as closed off entities without each other. I loved it when Floyd told her how it was and it took her some time to see the truth for herself and then the mission she went on! You're right, I think Mace had his own mission because he started asking her questions and then he told her he would be there when she called her A-hole mother. What a piece of work! And Preston. When they had that first chat, I was furious. I hate to be called stupid. It seriously pisses me off. I took it personally when he called her that. 

Was there a standout side character for you in this installment? I loved Ally's fit and Hector's presence, but Duke won the show and Tex was just so awesome being Tex. 

Did you read the epilogue? I'm curious what you thought of it. I stopped because it was messing with my vision of the series. Simone Elkeles' Perfect Chemistry series did epilogues that took the reader years into the future even though the next story would happen right after the previous story. I liked that, but KA's made me feel like the series was over, which depressed me. I didn't want a sum up about all the couples. No! I want another mafia mix up and car bomb and kidnapping...uh, you know what I mean. 

Two more, Brandee. And the football season is going to start here pretty soon. We'll have to make another wager or two. Did you see that one of our players got ejected from the preseason game for hitting one of your players? My sister got all giddy and started clapping because I was staring at the TV instead of my Kindle. She thought I was watching the game. I had to break it to her I was imaging the player losing his chance at the lineup, going home, developing a drinking habit, losing his girl...I was in story land. My poor sister. I'm a terrible football fan.

***

I loved Rock Chick Reckoning. I had to give it 5 stars because I couldn't stop reading it. Seriously, I would put it down for the night after counting how many hours of sleep I could still get only to pick it right back up with a shrug that was so full of it. I knew I'd be a very hostile zombie the next day and I still kept on reading. At the same time, I had a couple issues with this one. I didn't get the whole Sid angle. He was a shadowy figure the entire novel. Couldn't he personally come out of hiding and kidnap someone? That would have made his actions more personal. I've become a bit of a danger addict when it comes to the Rock Chicks. Do you find yourself looking forward to everything going wrong and the Hot Bunch being handed their asses? My other issue was of course the epilogue. Even though I'm a major epilogue girl, can an author give us too much of a good thing? Even with these two itty bitty things, I just freaking adored the story because Mace and Stella were equally terrible at relationships. Oh my goodness, I know you were frustrated with both of them. Did you go back and forth scolding them, or were you able to lay the blame on them equally. Me? I was a tennis match of blame and scoldings. 

What do you want to see most in the last 2 stories? I still want to see a striptease tutorial for the Rock Chicks and I love your earlier request for a Hot Bunch showdown. I wouldn't mind a Hot Bunch guy getting kidnapped and the girls having to charge to his rescue. That would rock the planet. 

That's all I got for now...Hank is still the one. Mace is the shit though. I love that he's an emotional bees' nest. Roxie is still my girl, but Stella's ability to go on a tirade at a moment's notice is a girl after my own heart.

Rock Chick is definitely worth being a hostile zombie! ;)

I agree with you about Sid but I also think that his actions are realistic considering the type person he is. (Like I know so much about was a criminal's behavior would be ;) I'm totally a danger addict thanks to Rock Chick. So I thought the ending kicked ass! Oh, and I still didn't change my mind about Preston. Nope. He did a good deed but it didn't redeem him in my eyes.

I finished the epilogue because...well, I just couldn't help myself. I thought it was interesting placement, myself. It was a little spoilery in my opinion. I discussed this with Sky and she told me there may be a reason for the epilogue that will be revealed in the next two books. Smartie pants! Anyway, I liked it but...

I alternated my scoldings as well. But you know, despite them being equally bad at the relationship thing, I still believe Stella was always talking to Mace through her music. And they'd both made it their mission to heal the other. 

That concert at the wedding...ROCKED! I was crying over Stella singing Still the One to Lee and Indy. It was the perfect song even if it is mushy. And I also noticed - before it was pointed out - that the set list was a happy one. :)

Hmm, what I want to see most in the last 2...let me sleep on that one. I do agree that something happening to one of the Hot Bunch and the girls saving him would be awesome. Tex, of course, had to save himself! We're still doing the tutorial and the showdown, right??? ;)

I was thinking about Eric. We didn't talk about him. I felt kinda bad for him. I know Stella was his job but he really did fall for her. I'd like to see him get a HEA. (I'm a sap, I know)

Oh, you know what'd be cool to see? Shirleen get herself a HOT one! That would make me smile.

You know, I've been giving some serious thought to the Hot Bunch. And I'm thinking Hank, Luke, and Mace all take #1 for me. And all for different reasons. Hank - he really does just make me swoon. So I'm going to withhold stating who my Hot Bunch guy is until we've finished the series. Because I thought Luke knocked Hank out, but I don't know. And then Mace...I think he was so realistic in how he handled Stella and his life in general considering what he'd been through. I adored that he remembered how his mom could heal...... Anyway, I am reserving my final say on the guys until the end. 

But Ava's still my Rock Chick, for sure. There are things about them all that I admire or relate to but she's most like me.

I'm actually a little in love with Eric. Yep. What a guy! He's an honorary Hot Bunch for sure. I cracked up about you talking to Sky about it and her little talk with you. I think KA just got a little epilogue happy and got carried away. I still love her. 

Of course we're still doing our fanfic at the end of the series. How else can we pay homage to the series and feed the hungry book girl beast inside us? I love your idea for Shirleen. Did you ever watch Waiting to Exhale? Total chick flick. I'm thinking Gregory Hines for Shirleen. I think Hector and Ren are going to knock us on our butts. I mean, Hector was undercover. That's intense. And Ren is a bad guy! 

Man, I wish we knew these people! I want to be in line waiting for my fancy coffee as Tex yells at the dumb guy in front of me.

***SPOILER CHAT***
I was so pissed at Mace when he whistled for Juno to say goodbye to the dog at the end of that insanely frustrating break up. I was so confused if they were even broken up, and then he said the thing about coming back to get his bags and I wanted to call him a ... rhymes with wussy. AND then he rubs the dog down for his final farewell! Oh man. I know Stella was devastated, and I might have been crying because break ups make me angry and teary, but watching it all from the cheap seats was so frustrating. I totally get Ally flipping out!

I was pissed too. That was a slap in the face plus a gut kick. And you're right, he absolutely was wussin' out. And it was frustrating. I was mad at Mace but I was mad at Stella too. Ugh. I don't know which one I was maddest at. They both screwed up. I was definitely crying at this moment.

What did you think of Jane, the invisible? I thought that was an interesting thing to toss in. And I gotta be honest, I never thought of her. She is invisible. :/

I knew it was her because none of the guys gossip in this series. They're too busy chasing Rock Chicks. And May is too smart to be tricked into sharing every single detail. The gay boys would not put up with someone betraying their confidence. They would call an emergency meeting at Indy's to plot revenge. Plus, Jane is a closet romance writer. I loved the spirit behind all the info sharing. And it was so cool that she had favorite couples for the day. I did think for a minute it was the bitch secretary that moved over to Ren's business.

***
My final thoughts...Kristen Ashley did it again. Rock Chick Reckoning had a different feel to it than its predecessors - Robyn said it best when she said this one was more relationship-centered. Stella and Mace had a hard time getting it right - how to treat one another. Despite flying bullets being the reason they're back together - the action sort of took a back seat to Stella and Mace. Also, these two were by far the most broken of any of the previous couples. It was a pleasure watching them heal each other - eventually. The other different element was that Stella is a true Rock Chick - and I adored the role her music played in the story.

14 comments:

  1. Great review, ladies! Luke Stark will always be my favorite hot bunch guy, but Mace is pretty great too. PS: if you think this one was rough . . . brace for #7. That is all.

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    1. Yeah, Luke, Hank and Mace all rank up there in my book - for all different reasons. :) And you are a stinker!! Teasing me like that about Hector's book. *sigh*

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  2. I completely love this Rock Chick Chat! It is freaking awesome. Now, I do not know if ya'll have started on Hector's book yet. But I think you might be in for a major surprise if you thought this one was different then the other books, in my opinion Hector's book is also a lot different than the other books! Because you may say the lady was crazy who "threw away" Hector but when you learn what actually happened, and what is going to happen I think you may end up wanting to be angry at Hector. I love Hector and his woman! They are actually my second favorite book! Or maybe third favorite LOL! It changes all the time.

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    1. Ugh - again with the tease about Hector's book. ;) Nope, we haven't started it yet but we will in the next few weeks. Hmm, Hector.... I feel that way about the Hot Bunch guys, Whitney...my favorite changes all the time. ;)

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  3. Goodness! Obviously you girls had a blast with this, I can feel the excitement thru the monitor!

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    1. LOL Hell yeah, we did! This is a great contemporary series, Braine. You'll have to check it out sometime. I'm happy to lend... :)

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  4. I haven't heard of this one, sounds interesting!
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

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    1. IT.IS.AMAZING! Missie, you have to check out this series. It's awesomesauce!! :)

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  5. Grrr... I wrote a hole spiel about this review and my comment won't come up!
    Great review, I love how passionate you both are about this series.

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace

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    1. I'm sorry! *ducks behind monitor* I hate how blogger does that sometimes. I'm going to install Disqus soon, I promise. :) Yep, we are definitely passionate about this series. Naomi, you really should wind up your one-click finger and get into this series!! LOL

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  6. I really enjoyed RC Reckoning, even though it was probably my least favorite of the series. But this review, it made me smile so big! The epilogue in this book was killer! My husband asked KA if she'd intended it to end the series, but she said no! You two still have some good reading ahead of you! A lot of this book comes back in RC Revolution and oh man, RC Regret made me SOB!

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    1. Really? Your least favorite?? Hmm...I'll have to give that some thought. :) Yeah that epilogue was something, wasn't it? I thought it was weird placement, for sure. I'm so happy we still have more Rock Chick ahead of us, plus many other KA reads! *squee*

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  7. *sighs* I really need to finish reading some ARCs so I can get back to Rock Chick! The first one blew my socks off, and it seems like the series is continuing on pretty strongly!
    It's so great that you and Robyn read this series together!
    I hope we'll be able to catch up later, my dear :) *BIG HUGS*

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. They do keep getting better, Lexxie. *chants hurry, hurry, hurry* ;) You're gonna love it!!

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Now you know what I think...what are your thoughts??