Hello and good morning my lovely readers,
I am thrilled to announce a special guest on my blog. :3
Jenn Burke, author of Not Dead Yet is on my blog today and she’s talking about songs fitting her characters. 🙂 If you’re a music lover like me you shouldn’t miss this post. :3
I can say I have Wes’ song on repeat. 😉
Not Dead Yet is the first book in her new paranormal series and I can wholeheartedly say that this book was one of my most anticipated reads since I’ve heard about it. ❤
Wanna know why I loved it so much? Well, scroll down and read my (slightly gushy and long!!) review. 😉
This post includes a giveaway, so you have the chance to win a really cool price – the giveaway is open internationally. Be sure to join this. 🙂
Happy reading. 🙂
PS I also participate in the Instagram tour on 2/8, so check out my Instagram account but I say: visit the other participants too, follow the hashtag #NotDeadYet. 😉
Title: Not Dead Yet
Series: Not Dead Yet # 1
Author: Jenn Burke
Genre: M/M Romance, Paranormal, Mystery Romance, Contemporary
Release Date: February 4, 2019 (ebook only)
Publisher: Carina Press
Length: 91.000 words
Warnings: Depression, talk of suicide, murders, paranormal violence
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Dying isn’t what it used to be.
Wes Cooper was dead. Then he wasn’t—though he’s not exactly alive, either. As an immortal not-ghost, he can transition between this world and the otherplane, which makes him the perfect thief for hire. For seventy years he’s made a “living” returning items to their rightful owners, seeing his fair share of the bizarre in the process. But he’s never witnessed murder. Until now.
His latest mission brings him more than he bargained for: a very-dead actor who is definitely going to stay that way. It’s just Wes’s luck that his ex-boyfriend, Detective Hudson Rojas, is assigned to the case. Hudson broke Wes’s heart years ago—and could again, given he’s rocking a hot silver-fox look that shouldn’t be legal.
As they work together to track down the murderer before anyone else gets hurt, it becomes clear Wes and Hudson have unfinished business. And when a secret Hudson’s been keeping threatens more than just their happiness, it might mean the end of their not-life together—permanently.
Not Dead Yet Characters in Music
By Jenn Burke
I don’t usually listen to music while I write. If I need help to tune out the world around me, I might pull up an electronic concentration channel on Spotify, but the music has to be something without words.
However, I have a long commute (100 km daily) so I listen to a lot of music when I’m not writing. And frequently, I’ll find a song (or two or three) that encapsulates the feeling I want for a book or a character. For Not Dead Yet, I ran across quite a few of these, so I thought I would share.
Wes is the narrator of the series. He’s an immortal not-ghost who died when he was 23 (in 1933), and he really hasn’t matured much past that age, despite being alive for nearly 110 years. He’s flawed and makes mistakes—little ones and really big ones—and when I first heard this song by the Canadian band Mother Mother, I thought it suited Wes and his frequent guilt.
It’s alright, it’s okay
It’s alright, it’s okay
You’re not a monster, just a human
And you’ve made a few mistakes
Mother Mother – It’s Alright
Hudson dated Wes for five years in the 1980s, and his devotion to his job over his relationship to Wes was what broke them up. In the intervening 33 years between their breakup and when Wes seeks him out after witnessing a murder, Hudson has grown and evolved in ways Wes hasn’t and can’t. There’s a lot of darkness weighing down on Hudson—38 years as a cop will do that—and he doesn’t believe he deserves, or even needs, salvation.
For many years, many years I was scared of the person I was
And I’m not perfect they say, but I know that I was born to be loved
The Strumbellas – Salvation
Lexi is 28 years old, the great-granddaughter of the witch who resurrected Wes, and his best friend. She is probably the single most “sure” character in the Not Dead Yet series—she knows who she is, what she’s capable of, and she won’t apologize to anyone for it. She also refuses to take any crap from Wes, which has made him a better person overall. This song speaks to her willingness to get up and try again when life gets her down, and to enjoy life as much as she can.
Head up, nothing gonna take me down
Stand up every time I hit the ground
Feel the pressure building inside my bones
It feeds my body, it’s liquid gold
LOLO – Wild
Evan has had a tough go at life, despite being only 20. I can’t share too much more without being spoilery, but I can say that one of the things I like most about Evan is that when he’s given a new opportunity, he doesn’t run away from it, despite living with depression. (And yes, this is Mother Mother again, because they’re awesome.)
You’re so sad, you’re so gone, you’re so lost
You’re so sad, you’re so down
I wanna pick you up
And put you in the clouds
Mother Mother – Get Up
If you’re already read Not Dead Yet, what do you think of these songs? Do you have others you would suggest?
Note from blog owner: Please tell us in comments below. 🙂
*~~*ARC kindly provided by the author to me in exchange for an honest review *~~*
I love a solid crime story with nice paranormal elements, the cherry on the top it is when there’s a sizzilin hot, mesmerizing love story included. Jenn Burke’s Not Dead Yet has all and so much more.
I don’t lie when I say this was one of the books I was most looking for for a while and when I was able to read it I squealed like a child in a candy story (I did it also when the cover was revealed or any teaser lines on Twitter shared, but well, who can blame me. ;)).
The book had the most effectful opening – and this is crucial for a mystery romance. The reader is with Wes right there, from the start – through his eyes, told in Wes’ POV, we follow the events and these aren’t easy to endure. The feelings Wes has are so palpable and valid. But on the other hand you’re curious, you’re as confused and want to know what’s that is what Wes has spotted.
From the blurb I knew this was a second chances, lovers reunited romance and I awaited the meet up of the two guys eagerly. It isn’t a casual or in any cases a normal reunion, both guys haven’t seen each other for over 3 decades! And with Wes being a non-ghost and Hudson also changed – I won’t reveal in which way – things are becoming pretty interesting. 😉
Jenn Burke did a great way in fleshing out Hudson. As mentioned above we see him through Wes’ eyes and granted, he might be glamour him up a bit but who can blame him? 😀 Hudson is a appealing fifty-five year old silver fox with a fit appearance, silvery strands in the hair, deep lines in his face as well as mesmerizing (but trizvled) eyes.
Hudson isn’t the guy Wes knows from over 30 years ago and in ways it is a surprise for Wes, but is it really, after so long not seeing each other? I was hooked to read more about Hudson, I sucked up every piece I could get, every part that could solve the puzzle Hudson was, but also Wes, though our narrator, was someone I had to decode as reader.
I can wholeheartedly say I was over the moon the way Jenn Burke wrote the intimate and sweet scenes between Hudson and Wes. In the way of how she displayed Wes and how Hudson is the only one for Wes, the only guy he can be himself with, the one he feels complete with, who he grants any physical contact – and is the only one allowed to. Wes’ demisexuality was very pleasantly displayed in this book and the way how Hudson is a pillar for Wes, one solid column Wes can lean on, but has to overcome a lot of obstactles – mostly his own regret and accepting his new self – is simply breathtaking. Without spoilering anything it’s only natural that Hudson, who is trying to protect those he loves, isn’t willing to risk any harm of his beloved ones, even if this means he has to be alone and isolated from everything.
Hudson comes across as cold-hearted and not caring in the beginning of the book but he has several reasons and the one why Hudson and Wes break up is maybe sad but also understandable.
It’s these small things that make this book so amazing, these characters who are so human – and in many ways not 😉 – who aren’t flawless, who are full of own regrets, self-doubts, anger or sadness.
The minor characters, the supportive characters are just marvelous and in ways this book is about found family.
For a long time Lexi, Wes’ best friend, is his only family – in more than one way, but later, when they meet Evan, the small group grows and they’re a bunch of people who are giving each other support and have each other’s backs – quite literally. 🙂
Next to the lovers reunited and second chance romances, found family in books is a reason to instant-buy a book. For me. ❤ No wonder this book stole a part of my heart with these amazing, charmingly unique minor characters. ❤
Lexi is such a force and I loved her right from the start. Who isn’t bewitched (;)) by a bad-ass lesbian witch who kicks ass like nobody else. :3
And Evan, my troubled soul, my sweet baby. The one character I wanted to wrap into a blanket, hug him tight – and ZOMG, how did I let out a delighted squeal when Wes offered all this, the amazing support he gives Evan. ❤
No wonder he’s almost instantly adopted by Wes and also Hudson has his special feelings – first born out of obligations – towards him. And I can say my heart melts evertime I remember these scenes with all the guys together. ❤ (And cackle up when I remember a specific hilarious scene. :D) I really can’t wait to see more domestic scenes with all of them. ❤
This book was page flipping good, I had hard times to say: “just one more chapter” when I read it through the night and my alarm went off early. XD But is it worth it? It most definitely is. This book should be devoured in one go – and afterwards enjoyed piece by piece for a second time. It’s just simply divine and I was hooked form page one.
I can’t tell how many times I cackled up, how many times I laughed out loud reading the funny scenes. Let me say there’s kind of substance abuse but there is no harm (so no content or trigger warning), in fact the scene is hilarious and kinda sweet and you get a new insight of Hudson – and I’ve to say it’s pretty eye opening. 😀
I guess I could go on and on and talk endlessly about this book but let me assure you that you have to get this book if you:
– love second chances romances where the lovers reunite, after shockingly three decades!
– have a heart for troubled sexy silver foxes with a secret
– adore the healthy dose of paranormal elements but can endure the downsides of these “gifts” for those who have to deal with it
– want a great representation of a demisexual, grey-ace character where the intimate scenes are so tender and sweet and perfect
– long for stories with found family, a small bunch of people sharing same thoughts and have each other’s backs
– can’t get enough of a solid crime case with turns and twists
Then, this book is yours.
Without any doub this book deserves the 5 out of 5 stars and I can’t stress out how much I enjoyed this book.
Is it sweet and tender? Yes.
Is it spiked with heavy topics, with loss and grief, regret and self-doubts? Hell yes.
But does it makes you happy when you finished it? Absolutely. ❤ And is it a perfect start for a book series, because right after reading you are screaming: “I want more”? Then yes, a thousand time yes, it is!
But, dear reader, don’t be sad, you’ve only to wait until June, when Give Up The Ghost is out. (warning: the blurb for this contains spoilers about the events of this book).
One of my top reads for 2019. ❤ Hope it will become one of yours too.
Author bio – Jenn Burke
Jenn Burke has loved out-of-this-world romance since she first read about heroes and heroines kicking butt and falling in love as a preteen. Now that she’s an author, she couldn’t be happier to bring adventure, romance, and sexy times to her readers.
Jenn is the author of a number of paranormal and science fiction romance titles, including the critically acclaimed Chaos Station science fiction romance series (authored with Kelly Jensen) from Carina Press.
She’s been called a pocket-sized and puntastic Canadian on social media, and she’ll happily own that label. Jenn lives just outside of Ottawa, Ontario, with her husband and two kids, plus two dogs named after video game characters…because her geekiness knows no bounds.
There is a giveaway for a huge pize:
- One signed paperback copy of Not Dead Yet (exclusive; you can’t buy it in print!) with some Canadian swag – will ship internationally
- $10 Amazon gift card
Your chance to win *click*
Please note: the giveaway is not sponsored, administered or endorsed by Mikku-chan / A World full of Words.
Blogtour and release blitz hosted by/through A Novel Take PR