Sep 30 2014 2:45pm

September 2014 New Adult Roundup: The Mind is a Battlefield

Shatter by Erin McCarthyTurmoil and angst abound in September’s NA Releases. Many of these characters are struggling with new relationships while trying to tame their inner demons. Sometimes, your biggest enemy is yourself and these characters prove that. Overcoming the limitations you set on yourself can be the hardest task of all.

An uncompromising New Adult story, Shatter by Erin McCarthy features Kylie and Jonathan who have what they thought was going to be a one-night-stand. Eight weeks later consequences rear their ugly head. Told in Dual POV, this is the end of a series I’ve followed religiously and greatly enjoyed. McCarthy holds nothing back for these characters and I’m sad to see them go.

Told in Grant and Harlow’s POV One More Chance by Abbi Glines is the sequel to Take a Chance. Reeling from Harlow’s unexpected news, Grant must quickly make a decision, will he chose Harlow? A heart-wrenching, gripping story —make sure you keep the tissues handy.

The final book in this trilogy, The Certainty of Violet and Luke by Jessica Sorenson brings on the angst. The story picks up right where book two ended and it doesn’t slow down. The finality of their story is focused on their character growth. The encompassing love between Violet and Luke seems to be on the way to a happy ending despite the gloom that surrounds them. When secrets are revealed their foundation is once again rocked. These tormented characters have a long road to reach a place of absolution and happiness.

In Toni Aleo’s Boarded by Love, the star hockey bad boy of Bellevue has his eye on Claire. Claire barely has time for herself, trying to juggle a rigorous schedule of dance practice and school plus a little known secret. A burlesque dancer at night, Claire refuses to reveal her alternative life and that has disaster written all over it. A spin off of the Assassin series, it’s an awesome beginning to the Bellevue Bullies college stories.

The Hook Up by Kristen CallihanDamaged Goods by Nicole Williams is a story of seizing life and making it your own. Liz is moving back to a town she hates calling home, she’s rescuing her sisters after their mother disappears. She vowed never to get entangled with a local boy but, life has a funny way of slapping you in the face. Fighting what’s right in front of her, Liv must make some tough choices. Will she finally leave her pessimism behind and seize the day? Or will she continue down the same tired path pretending to live? This story is emotional, funny, and has plenty of angst.

The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan is told in Dual POV. Anna is making sure she never lets anyone leave her behind again. Keeping everyone at arm’s length, she never imagined her hook up with the star quarterback would amount to anything. A pro at feeling nothing, she’s surprised at her reaction to Drew. Fighting against her instincts, Anna refuses to acknowledge the sparks between them. Will she be able to fight herself forever? Or will she finally succumb to the incredible chemistry between her and Drew? Heartbreaking and eye opening, this novel proves still waters run deep.

The first in a series, Rock Addiction by Nalini Singh, is rock star romance features Molly and Fox. Fox is a swoon worthy, alpha-singing front man of a popular band. Rock Addiction straddles the line of New Adult and Contemporary. Molly is young and both Fox and Molly are partaking in their first relationship. Their journey is not easy and they will be tested. Can Molly finally let go of the scars of the past? Will Fox be able to let her go when the time comes? Having a rock star boyfriend might not be all it’s cracked up to be but Molly sets out to prove everyone, including herself, wrong.

The Suit by BN TolerOpposites attract in this B.N. Toler’s The Suit, John has come back to a place he never thought he would return. He thought he left all things country behind when he moved on to college and law school. He had to come back and settle old debts on the friend’s farm. He’s in for a surprise when he meets Edie, the friend’s granddaughter. Edie’s taken over the farm and the training of the racehorses. Chemistry flares between the two, leading to some very hot role-playing moments. John’s been running away from anything that reminds him of his past. Will he let these invisible shadows bar his path to happiness with Edie?

In this spinoff of the Moore series, Bad Son Rising by Julie A. Richman, Zac Moore, son of Schooner, is carving out a name for himself in college and with the ladies. With more hookups than five men combined have had in their lifetime, Zac never thought he would find “the one”. As life dictates, it hits him when he least expects it. Going from New York to Africa, Zac tries finding this love only to have roadblocks pop up in his life. Disbelieving that he deserves true love, Zac must find it within himself to let go of his past and make his own future. Zac is pretty amazing and one of my favorites off this list.

What If by Rebecca Donovan, a standalone novel that pushes the boundaries of your mind, this is a tale with many twists and turns. I loved every second of the journey. A story of possibilities, friendship, and family, it tugs at your heartstrings. Nothing is as it seems and Cal must fight the odds in order to discover the truth. Will he find Nicole, his childhood friend, or is this doppelganger a mere coincidence? I loved trying to figure out the mystery, the writing and suspense made this a quick read!

Loving Lies by Linda KageLoving Lies by Linda Kage tells the story of the aftermath of Perfect Fate, book one in the series, however, it can be read as a standalone. Roommates Tessa and Bailey, volunteer at the hospital as candy strippers. Tess stumbles upon a survivor of the shooting who is extremely grumpy and has woken up with amnesia. In order to help him since he refuses to eat and is slowing his recovery, Tess claims to be his girlfriend. Will this all blow? Jonah and Tess’ relationship is sweet and endearing until it isn’t. It has highs and lows and made for a great read.

Unlit Star by Lindy Zart is a tragic story told in the POV of two characters. This is a story of finding that someone, even if it’s for a short period of time, that will uplift you and change you for the better

Stay with Me, the remarkable next edition in J. Lynn’s Wait for Me Series solves the mystery of Calla Fritz. Calla has a huge bag of issues she needs to take care of at home. A home, she thought she had left behind. Once she returns, the mysterious new bartender, Jax, ensnares her attention. Calla finds it hard to fight the pull of Jax, who’s a genuinely nice guy. Calla may finally let someone become close to her, but all is not well and there is much mystery and action in this story. J. Lynn ups the Alpha in Jax and the story is engrossing.

These heroes and heroines have some huge hurdles to overcome. Which New Adult read grabbed your attention and had you rooting for them?


To find out more about each book mentioned:

Shatter by Erin McCarthy  
One More Chance by Abbi Glines    
The Certainty of Violet and Luke by Jessica Sorenson  
Boarded by Love  by Toni Aleo   
Damaged Goods by Nicole Williams  
The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan  
Rock Addiction by Nalini Singh    
The Suit by B.N. Toler  
Bad Son Rising by Julie A. Richman  
What If by Rebecca Donovan  
Loving Lies by Linda Kage  
Unlit Star by Lindy Zart  
Stay with Me by J. Lynn  
















Jessica spends her time daydreaming about a life within the pages of her favorite books, hoping to meet her own alpha male in an amazing meet cute. Living in Miami, she breaks the stereotype of the tanned appearance; being the palest amongst her friends takes a lot of work and it's all owed to the aforementioned books. She works all day but dreams of the day she can get paid to devour romance books all day and night. An avid reader since she could sound out words, you can find her reviewing at Bookcrack.com where she lets her reading freak flag fly!

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Jennifer Proffitt
1. JenniferProffitt
I. Loved. Shatter. I laughed, I cried. Their story reminded me of the Chase Crawford/Anna Kendrick storyline in What to Expect When You're Expecting. Curses, adding WAY too much to my TBR pile—I'm on a book buying freeze!
Jessica Moro
2. JessicaMoro
I know, this month was pretty epic in releases! @JenniferProfitt. I loved, loved Shatter and I'm sad to see them go!
Jennifer Proffitt
3. JenniferProffitt
I know, Erin McCarthy is ending two of my favorite series by her, what will I do!
4. Lis
Are there any good new adult reads that aren't so tragic? Why do they all live in such dark places? Are there no happy 20+ year olds anymore?
I'd appreciate any fun, lighter (not without some angst and drama), still sexy but without such volitale sociopaths we call heroes today. Where have all the good guys gone? You can still have an alpha male that respects women. I'd love to read one of them. A Jill Shalvis or Kate Perry of new adult would be great! Any suggestions or am I stuck reading about middle-aged characters to get my fun romance fill?
Jennifer Proffitt
5. JenniferProffitt
Hi, Lis, we feel your pain! By and large, New Adult is stillon the darker spectrum, but Jessica has covered other, less dark New Adult in her previous New Adult Round Ups--which you can find under our New Adult tag. We also have a few other articles that focus specifically on non-Angsty New Adult. Here are the links, for you to choose from:
Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes: A Guide to New Adult Male/Male Romance
Beyond Darkness and Angst: The “New” New Adult
Maturing New Adult: A Case Study with Samantha Young, Christina Lauren, and More!

Also, if you ever find some funny New Adult, feel free to share the love in the comments--it's out there!

-Jenn @ Team H&H
Jessica Moro
6. JessicaMoro
@Lis As I went through the list, I thought the same lol but I think it has to do with the age and the angst that seems to be predominant. There are some funny NA's and I believe there was a post on the sites about lighter books. Megan Erickson, Make it count is one.
7. Lis
Thanks ladies. I will be looking into those links.
Stacey Wahrman
8. staceyw
Lis, I think the sweetest NA romance I have read in the last year is the trilogy Flat-Out Love, Flat-Out Matt, and Flat-Out Celeste. I was surprised by the third one, since #2 was just a retelling of #1 from a different POV, but Flat-Out Celeste actually might have been my favorite of the three (read them in order, though).
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