Tuesday, 25 October 2016

New Release Spotlight & Review: The Pacifist by Jenny Holiday

Title: The Pacifist
Series: New Wave Newsroom #3
Author: Jenny Holiday
Genre: New Adult Romance
Release Date: October 25, 2016
Length: 36k words
Format: Digital/Paperback
Digital ISBN: 978-0-9950927-3-0

Paperback ISBN: 978-0-9950927-2-3

She's done holding her peace...

Laraline Reynolds has spent her entire life as a certified Good Girl. The perpetual peacemaker in her volatile, conservative family, Laraline promises herself that she'll spend her last year of grad school getting in touch with her inner rebel before she settles down and marries her family-approved long-distance boyfriend. But Laraline's Year of Fun quickly turns into something more complicated, and she finds herself at the forefront of a movement to change her college's sexual assault policy.

It's the Year of No Fun for Tony Bianchi. A fifth-year senior, he needs to graduate, so he's put a moratorium on his two favorite distractions: girls and photography. But when Laraline comes calling, needing some photos for her cause--and for her campaign for a seat on the college board of governors--Tony's resistance comes crashing down.

They both fall hard. But while Tony is ready to give it everything he's got, Laraline is afraid. She wasn't prepared for her one-year rebellion to lead her to the life she truly wants. In order to break free from her family, she'll need to do the scariest thing of all--follow her heart.

My reaction was all out of whack. She was kissing me softly, gently, her lips moving against mine almost chastely, but everything inside me roared to life. I was hard in an instant, and a herd of rhinos seemed to be having a party in my stomach. I gave it a few beats to make sure this wasn’t some kind of “thanks for helping with the zine, buddy,” kiss that she’d miscalibrated, but when she didn’t seem to be retreating, I settled my hands on her cheeks and deepened the kiss slightly, hoping she’d come along with me.
She did. She opened her mouth, and I couldn’t stifle a groan as our tongues touched. It had been so long, and she felt so good. The way she sighed into my mouth did some kind of caveman thing to me. I was stupidly proud that I had the power to summon those noises from Laraline, who, at least in my experience with her, was usually so proud and self-contained.
She took a step closer. I’d purposefully been touching her only with my hands. I didn’t want her to feel my raging boner and think I was a jerk. But there was nowhere to go. My butt was against the counter, and she had me cornered.
But she didn’t seem to mind. “Tony,” she breathed, breaking our kiss as she pressed her body against mine and buried her head in my neck. I gave in and wrapped my arms around her, holding her tight, letting the feel of soft breasts against my chest permeate my being. God, she felt so good. I needed a better word. She felt…like everything.
But then it was over. Too soon. What could I do when she pulled away, though, but let her?
I expected a big speech, something about how that had been a mistake. Maybe she would invoke Jason.
But instead she just flashed me a smile—a full, unreserved grin that almost took my breath away. Then she turned and took a piece of pizza from the box, walked the few steps to the main room, flopped down on my bed, and said, “Dynasty is on. Can we watch it?”
Sure.” I laughed. I’m not really sure why. It could have been because the whole thing was so surreal. Making out with Laraline and then watching TV—Dynasty, no less, my sister’s favorite—like nothing had happened.
Or it could have just been because I was happy.
Goddamn it.

The final novella in the New Wave Newsroom doesn't disappoint as Jenny Holiday takes us back to 1984 in The Pacifist.

Tony Bianchi is starting his fifth year at Allenhurst and hoping to finally graduate at the end of the year. It means all work and no play, so is giving up girls and photography. Only, he sees an amorous couple on campus and his impulse to capture the moment becomes unbearable when a squirrel decides to place itself within the scene. When it's joined by another squirrel, the whole image fits within the viewfinder…click! It wont harm to suggest the image will be perfect for the welcome-back edition will it?

Laraline Reynolds aka Dove is back at Allenhurt to finish her Masters degree. She plans to have fun this semester because it may be the last opportunity before graduating. Her Father's protégé has hinted on a serious talk later in the year and they should both take advantage and not be exclusive during this time. Only, Laraline's Father has standards and a reputation to uphold, so when he sees his daughter lip-locked on the front of the college newspaper, his reaction is far from favourable.

I love Tony and Laraline together because they compliment each other, yet shouldn't. In part because they come from different backgrounds. Laraline, courtesy of her parents has her life mapped out for her. She's spent the past years doing what pleases them after the death of her sister Phoebe. Tony's time at Allenhurst has been misspent as he focused his time on photography for the Allenhurst Examiner and girls. Both are at a crossroads of their life...Tony, left behind by his peers and his twin sister who have graduated and moved on with their lives and Laraline who sees a future much like her mother's as a supporting wife of a professor.

This series has been a wonderful breath of fresh air for me as the author weaves engaging stories around music from the early 1980's. The song for The Pacifist is When Doves Cry by Prince and like the previous books in the series captures the essence of the decade beautifully. I'm sad this is the last novella because it really captured my imagination in a nostalgic way.

***arc generously received courtesy of the publisher***  

More books from the New Wave Newsroom!

The Fixer: On sale for just 99cents!

The Gossip Out Now:

Jenny Holiday started writing at age nine when her awesome fourth grade teacher gave her a notebook and told her to start writing some stories. That first batch featured mass murderers on the loose, alien invasions, and hauntings. (Looking back, she’s amazed no one sent her to a kid-shrink.) She’s been writing ever since. After a brief detour to get a PhD in geography, she worked as a professional writer, producing everything from speeches to magazine articles. More recently, her tastes having evolved from alien invasions to happily-ever-afters, she tried her hand at romance. A lifelong city-lover, she lives in Toronto, Canada, with her family. She is represented by Courtney Miller-Callihan of Greenburger Associates.

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