Saturday 4 July 2015

Dare to Dream by S.B. Alexander ~ #authorinterview #bookreview #teasers #Q&A

About Dare to Dream

Dare to Dream by S.B. Alexander
July 17, 2015
ISBN: 978-0-9887762-9-6 (print)
ISBN: 978-0-9887762-8-9 (ebook)
268 pages
New Adult Fiction

Bad boy Kade Maxwell knows all too well the pain and loss of the death of a loved one after his sister’s death tore his family—especially his mother—to pieces. He longs for the day his mother can heal from the mental anguish and return home to live with her family again. He prays every day that God will keep his brothers safe and that his father will one day be reunited with his wife. He doesn’t dream of his future. In fact, he had nightmarish glimpses of what his life would’ve been like as an adult until he met Lacey. She’s a light that cuts through his darkness. Her beauty, her determination, and her dedication in overcoming her own tragedy energizes his belief that maybe—just maybe—he can dream again.

Lacey Robinson has suffered tragedy at the hands of a killer who took away her sister and mother. After a change of scenery and a new life, her PTSD is on the mend. With the love and strength from Kade Maxwell and the help of her psychiatrist, she’s been able to work on the triggers that cause her panic attacks and blackouts. With a clear head and a clear road to the future, Lacey dreams of three things: She longs to find the person who killed her family. She wants to play baseball for ASU so bad she can taste it. And she wants a future with Kade Maxwell. But with several roadblocks thrown in her way, she may not get everything she wants. A trip to California opens a door that could expose the killer. Aaron Seever is up to his psychotic, bullying antics, and Kade has his own path for the future, one Lacey isn’t sure includes her.

Kade vows to love and protect Lacey even if that means his life for hers. Lacey vows to push through her demons and show Kade and her family that she has what it takes to rise above tragedy, even if she has to run into the arms of a killer to save a loved one.

Strong language. Sexual content. Violence. Intended for audiences 18 years and older.

Meet S.B. Alexander

S.B. Alexander’s passion for writing began when she read her first Stephen King novel, The Shining. Over the years she kept telling family and friends she was going to write a book. Fifteen years later, on the advice of a friend, she sat down and wrote her first novel. Two years later, she has published five novels with more to come. Her books are targeted toward the young adult and new adult markets.

Her young adult series, Vampire SEALS, includes three books, On the Edge of Humanity, On the Edge of Eternity, and On the Edge of Destiny, which have garnered high praise from readers. Dare to Kiss was the first book in her new adult series. The follow up, Dare to Dream, will be released on July 17, 2015.

Alexander’s career has been colorful—a former navy veteran, high school math teacher and college professor, sales consultant, coach, and manager. She loves baseball, especially the Boston Red Sox. She enjoys playing golf, is moved by music and great stories, and will go out of her way to help people.

Alexander currently works full time in corporate America and writes any chance she gets. She believes words are the key to opening the door to extraordinary places with amazing characters that tell a great story.

Dare to Dream

By S.B. Alexander

An Interview with Kade Maxwell

Live, Read and Breathe: So, Kade, welcome and thank you for joining us here at Live, Read and Breathe. It’s been a while since we last saw you. When we did, your girlfriend, Lacey Robinson, had just made the Kensington High’s baseball team. Since then what have you been up to?

Kade: I’ve been getting to know my girl and spending time with my mom. As you know she’s been in a mental health facility.

Live, Read and Breathe: How is your mom?

Kade: She has good days and bad. The bad days are mostly in the wintertime. She somehow associates snow with Karen. My old man and I figure it stems from her belief that snow is an angel’s blanket, and she now associates snow and angels with, Karen. Overall, we see a window of hope that she’s healing.

Live, Read and Breathe: So, how is Lacey doing? She’s been through a traumatic experience herself.

Kade: Her psychiatrist has helped to diminish her PTSD. Keeping her mind focused on the upcoming baseball season has also helped. Although she’s had one or two triggers that have caused her to black out. Aside from that, she still wonders who the culprit was who killed her mom and sister.

Live, Read and Breathe: Any leads on the murder case?

Kade: Her father has been talking with the LAPD, but so far nothing. In fact, life has been quiet. It almost feels like the calm before the storm. My enemy, Greg Sullivan, has been non-existent. His cousin, Aaron Seever, hasn’t bullied or threatened Lacey to steer clear of the baseball team, at least not to my knowledge. But baseball season is around the corner.

Live, Read and Breathe: You’ve been through a lot in your teenage years. Your sister was accidentally shot by her friend. Your mom is a mental health facility. Your brother, Kody, lost his girlfriend in a motorcycle accident, and now you meet and fall in love with a girl who has had an equally hard road. How do you handle all the heartache and turmoil?

Kade: I hardly sleep, and nightmares have been the norm. I had to be the adult in my family. My brothers needed someone to help them through the pain. My father needed me to take care of them and my mom when he was away on military assignments. I just didn’t have time to deal with my feelings. I’ve kept them bottled up for so long. Maybe that’s the reason I have nightmares. Then along comes Lacey. She’s beautiful, strong and determined. I mean, she was the one who found her sister and mom’s dead bodies. Yet, she’s slowly crawling out of her own chaos. She’s been the person who’s given me a window of hope that life does get better. She’s even helped my brothers see the same thing. 

Live, Read and Breathe: Speaking of your brothers, your family bond is strong. You seem to do things as a unit. Tell me more about your bond.

Kade: Family is everything to us. Our father taught us at an early age that no matter what happens in this world we would always have each other, and that family comes first. We were always tight before Karen’s death, but her passing has brought us even closer. I do anything to protect my family.

Live, Read and Breathe: Tell us something that no one knows about you?

Kade: I’d love to study music, but in my mind it’s not a career that would pay the bills.

Live, Read and Breathe: If you had to choose, baseball or football?

Kade: Don’t tell Lacey, but football.

Live, Read and Breathe: Can you share any tidbits of what readers can expect in your new book?

Kade: All I can say without giving too much away is lots of action in all sense of the word. (wink, wink).

Live, Read and Breathe: Kade, it’s been a pleasure. Thank you for joining us. I wish you and your family the best, and I can’t wait to dive into the book.

Source: eARC for Honest Review Courtesy from Author via NetGalley
Genre: Mature YA Contemporary Romance
Part 2 in an ongoing series

My Dare to Dream Review ...

I LOVED.  LOVED. Dare to Kiss, so I was ecstatic to read Dare to Dream.  In this book it's a continuation of Lacey and Kade.  Part of me was excited to continue with them and another part of me was hoping the next book was going to be one of the triplets.

Don't get me wrong I loved Lacey and Kade but I thought their story ended well in book one and the mystery could have been carried out with the stories of the brothers.  But that was not the case so with this book we get to follow the trials and tribulations of young love.  Even though they're young, they've a very mature relationship.  They both had to grow up too fast with their past tragedies but these pasts are also part of the bind that connects these two. 

Lacey's barely keeping her shit together with her PTSD, the mystery of the death of her mom and sister , baseball and a new relationship.   Kade's fierce, loyal and protective which are strengths as a person but faults as part of a relationship.  

Even though Kade acts before he thinks things through.  His intentions come from the purest place.  He only wants to love and protect Lacey.  He doesn't want to see her hurt anymore than she already has been. 

"You're my unconscious beauty.  You're my whole world, Lacey.  I love the tattoo."

In the beginning their relationship is intense and profound.  This is what keeps them going through everything. 

"I love the crap out of your, baby.  I'm here for you."

But it all becomes too much for Lacey.  Lacey's so quick to get angry and act out that she doesn't take the time to truly listen.  She always assumes people think she's weak but if she listened she would learn so much more about herself and the people who care about her.

"I'll do you one better.  We need a break. I need a break."  ( A little harsh of a reaction but they're in high school where everything is emotionally charged.  However, if Lacey just stepped back a bit she would see Kades POV.  It doesn't mean she has to agree but if she saw it she might have made a better decision)

"I don't want to get hurt any more than I am now, and I'm not sure he'll change."  (Ugh! Insert eye roll here.  This woe is me never wins me over with heroines, young or not.  Lacey's not perfect and wants and needs Kade to accept her as she is, but wants Kade to change.  Grrrr.  Maybe Kade would be better off with someone else.  Insert Gasp.  Did I just say that?  Yep. I did)

While Lacey pushes Kade away for totally the wrong reasons they both get great advice from their families and friends.  Without some of this advice they may have never found each other again.

"Protect her.  Don't suffocate her.  I also know how possessive all you boys are.  That's not a bad thing in the least.  Just make sure you know when to back off, and when not to.  She's a strong girl on the outside, but she is extremely fragile on the inside."

" . . . Look, sweetie.  You can't get mad every time Kade keeps something from you.  Understand his reasons.  You have to meet each other halfway.  Decide what you can and can't handle and communicate with him."

While Lacey and Kade are going through their new trials and tribulations they are also find themselves smack middle of the mob.  Which causes all kinds of commotions.  Thankfully Kade's love and support is strong and he watched from the sidelines waiting for when Lacey needed him. And oh boy did she need him.  How can you not after how many near death situations she went through.   Even though she's faced with more stress and tragedies, which are almost over the top of how much she went through but hey I don't know what it's like with the mob so it could be bang on.  With these situations though she finally has a breakthrough on her PTSD and learns to become stronger than she already was.  

"I'll do my best, but I can't promise I won't fuck up.  And I need you to promise that you won't walk out or break up with me every time we have an argument.  Because we're going to argue and disagree on things.  Sometimes Lace, you don't see past your anger."

As in any relationship, they take work.  Which means Lacey and Kade will have a bumpy road but their love seems strong enough to make it in the end.  Thankfully we will get to see more of them with the next books which will be on the different Maxwell brothers.  

Sometimes books that are continuations of the same couple can be great and other times they can fall flat.  With Dare to Dream it fell somewhere in the middle for me.  I liked the mystery and the intrigue of what was going on but I got disappointed with parts of their relationship.  Sometimes its hard to disengage from being an adult and getting in the mind of YA.  In reality being a YA so many decisions are made on emotions instead of logic but as an adult its hard to not get frustrated and want them to get their shit together.  However, did this book embody the YA mind?  Yes.  Do I love this series? Absolutely.  Do I love Kade? No doubt.  Can I wait for the next book in the series? Barely, as I can't wait to see Kelton lose his heart to love.  Do I think it is an important message with PTSD? Absolutely.  Did I absolutely love this book?  No.  I loved parts of it but I also didn't like parts of it making me not get as enveloped with this book as I did with Dare to Kiss. 

3 to 3.5 Kade Loving Thumbs up!

thumbs upthumbs upthumbs up  . 5

 Dare to Dream Releases July 17/15.  Look at your favorite book stores on that day.

About Dare to Kiss
Dare to Kiss by S.B. Alexander
September 30, 2014
ISBN: 978-0-9887762-5-8 (print)
ISBN: 978-0-9887762-4-1 (ebook)
340 pages
New Adult Fiction

Besides her family, Lacey Robinson’s only other love is baseball. She’s on top of the world when Arizona State University approaches her to discuss a scholarship. To be the first girl ever to grace a college boys’ team is beyond what she has ever dreamed.

Her fastball is impeccable, her curveball equally as good, and her slider annihilates anyone who dares to step in the batter’s box. But fate has its own way of throwing curveballs. When she looses her mother and sister to a home invasion, baseball and her dreams die with them. Tragedy has a way of seeping deep into her psyche, causing nightmares, panic attacks and blackouts. Diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, her psychiatrist recommends a change of scenery and picking up the things that she loved to do, and for Lacey that is baseball.

After a move clear across the country, only two things matter to Lacey—overcome her PTSD and make Kensington High’s baseball team. But trying out for the team comes with obstacles—the captain, Aaron Seever, doesn’t want a girl on the team.

Her life is further complicated when she meets Kade Maxwell, a tall, sexy and drool-worthy bad boy who has a magical touch that awakens her feminine side and a kiss that slowly erases her nightmares. But getting involved with him may be dangerous when Kade’s archenemy returns to town to settle a vendetta.

To complicate matters, her PTSD has taken a turn for the worse. She has to find a way to heal otherwise she may not have a chance at anything in life, especially love.

Q&A with S.B. Alexander

Where did you get the idea for the plot of Dare to Kiss?

Growing up, I was an active little girl in just about every sport. But the one that captured my heart was baseball. I loved everything about the sport. Since girls couldn’t play, I wanted to create a world where they did. I also wanted to show that no matter what obstacles a person is dealt, with hard work, dedication and the help from loved ones, a person can find the right path in life.

Noting your love of baseball, is the character of Lacey Robinson modeled after you?

When I started writing Dare to Kiss, I had a feisty character in mind for Lacey Robinson. But as I continued to write, Lacey’s personality turned out to be so much more. She’s strong, determined and lovable. She has weaknesses that get in her way, but her determination is what shapes her. Part of her is modeled after me. But I was never feisty growing up. I was actually a shy kid.

Was Kade Maxwell based on anyone in your life?

Kade Maxwell is the boy I wished I knew when I was in high school. He’s a strong alpha who protects family above all else, and he goes out of his way to make sure the girl he loves is treated like royalty. I’ve met a couple of guys like Kade, but he’s not based on anyone in my life.

What will fans of Dare to Kiss like about Dare to Dream?

I think they’ll love reading from Kade’s POV. They’ll also enjoy how Lacey grows into a stronger person, and the mystery and suspense of the storyline will keep them turning pages.

Can you tell us a little about the role of PTSD in your books?

The heart of the story in Dare to Kiss and Dare to Dream is a girl who is attempting to understand and live with her PTSD after having lost part of her family to homicide. In doing so, she’s constantly challenged to not black out or panic when faced with certain triggers that remind her of the tragedy she’s endured. PTSD is an illness that can consume a person’s life, but baseball, friends and meeting a boy who has had a similar experience gives Lacey the opportunity to slowly put the pieces of her life back together.

After writing two Young Adult books, what inspired you to write New Adult fiction, and how was writing this genre different?

I didn’t think too much about the genre. I wanted to get the story down on paper. As it unfolded it just happened to fit into the New Adult genre, although as I was writing Dare to Kiss I found I had a little more freedom to detail the romance element.

How do you balance your time between working full time and writing on the side?

I travel quite frequently for my job, and in doing so, I find a snippet of time on an airplane or at night in a hotel room. I also dedicate at least one day on the weekends to writing.

Without any spoilers of course, what can we expect from the next book in the series?

Up next, will be Dare to Love, and the focus will be on Kelton Maxwell. Here’s a short summary: Playboy college student, Kelton Maxwell, is on track to enter Harvard Law School. He needs one more item to complete his resume—to land a summer job at a prestigious law firm in Boston. But fate may have other plans for him when he gets arrested for the murder of his roommate’s father, and all because the devil decided to spit him out and into the arms of the one girl who severed his heart. The one girl who he thought he’d never see again. 

Dare to Dream blends romance and drama for New Adult readers

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Author S.B. Alexander has drawn on a childhood experience and her love of baseball to inspire her upcoming New Adult novel, Dare to Dream (July 17, 2015). The book is the much-anticipated follow up to her 2014 release, Dare to Kiss.

Brimming with drama and romance, Dare to Dream continues the saga of Kade Maxwell and Lacey Robinson. Kade, a tall, sexy and drool-worthy bad boy, has watched the death of his sister tear apart his family. He prays for his mother to heal and return home, and he asks God to watch over his brothers and father. But the one thing Kade doesn’t dream about is his own future. Until he met Lacey, he had been haunted by nightmares. A light that cuts through his darkness, Kade admires Lacey’s beauty, determination and dedication to overcome her own tragedy and gives him hope that he could one day dream again.

After the tragic deaths of her mother and sister, Lacey developed post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. Once a victim of terrifying panic attacks and blackouts, Lacey has healed with Kade by her side. She dreams of three things – to find the person who killed her family, playing baseball for ASU and a future with Kade. But with several roadblocks thrown in her way, not all of her dreams may come true.

“The story developed from something that happened to me when I was a child,” Alexander said. “And from that experience the story unfolded. The message in the story: With the right help and people around you, a person might be able to overcome PTSD. I’m not saying they will, but taking the right steps can certainly help to heal some of the symptoms associated with PTSD. I will never get the image of my experience out of my head, but I’m not afraid anymore.”

Dare to Dream is the second book in The Maxwell Series. The first book in the series, Dare to Kiss, claimed the #1 bestseller spot in Amazon UK’s sports fiction category. Alexander has also written a thrilling young adult series, Vampire SEALS, which has drawn praise from fans across the world. Alexander is a former navy veteran, high school math teacher and college professor. She currently works as a corporate sales manager, but is always looking for her next story, character or scenery.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.