Blog Tour ~ Tell Me Our Story by Anyta Sunday (Reviews + Excerpt + Giveaway)

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Blog Tour, Excerpt & Giveaway:
Tell Me Our Story
By Anyta Sunday

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Icy, standoffish Jonathan Hart always turned towards that laugh. Full-throated, uninhibited, addictive.

Soft smiles encouraging him over swing bridges. Hearty chuckles dancing around a ballroom. Wobbly grins. Double-glances. Eyes that brightened the world. His world.

From the moment he met David O’Hara, Jonathan started forming a smile of his own.

And then O’Hara left.

One lingering look.

No last goodbye.

Seven years later, that laugh again.

Full-throated, uninhibited.

Addictive.

O’Hara. Still all fire and flame, still drawing Jonathan in.

And now he wants Jonathan paired with him in a seven-week social influencing challenge.

Now, he wants to finish melting his heart…

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Excerpt:

Jonathan sat at one of the dozen tables for the opening dinner and willed himself to hold it together. His first ICon. Months of mental preparation, and still he sweated. Willed himself not to search out the bright, full-throated laughter that rippled through the dining area. Willed himself not to scan the hundred-plus crowd for him.

But all during dinner, Jonathan’s ears had been filled with that uninhibited laughter. Like a wet umbrella popping open in his face, covering him forehead to chin in fresh rain. It tickled. Made him shiver.

He needed it. He needed to escape it.

Key-card cutting into his palm, he dashed to the lobby and pressed the up button between two brass-doored elevators. He’d go to his room. Call it in for the night.

Movement caught his peripheral vision. His nape prickled; his limbs locked together.

“I thought you lived in Sydney?” came a creamy female voice.

“Couldn’t miss out on all the naughty fun that happens at night.” That laugh. “Come on. Show me your room.”

“You’re determined, O’Hara.”

“I prefer charming.”

Both sets of elevator doors dinged and opened. Jonathan hurriedly slid into the fuller one, alongside another couple and their massive suitcases. He jabbed at the button for the 12th floor and the doors blessedly began to close.

“Quick, Mira. Let’s catch that one.”

“But the other one is empty—”

“Hold the doors!” O’Hara called jovially.

The middle-aged woman next to Jonathan immediately unfolded her arm and the doors buckled open again.

Jonathan dropped his gaze to the floor as they squeezed in. A glittery red dress and strappy heels pushed past him, followed by tight, monotone grey jeans and a darker grey jersey, artfully distressed at the hip.

A braided leather wristband caught his eye. O’Hara dropped his hand from the panel of floor buttons and a whoosh of air breezed against Jonathan’s arm. There was a slight hitch in the air. A hesitation.

Quiet acknowledgment.

Jonathan’s focus froze on the panel. No new number had lit up. Either O’Hara and Mira were on the same floor as the couple, or they were at the top like him.

The elevator creaked and groaned as it ascended, and Jonathan’s key-card bent under his squeezing grip. The floors took forever to pass.

O’Hara shifted, bumping into the couple’s suitcase. A thump had him crouching with cheerful apologies, and just like that they were talking about where they’d been in Australia so far, and where they should go, and joking about O’Hara’s accent—neither Kiwi nor Aussie despite his having lived in both countries, but it didn’t bother him, because everyone loved an unusual accent. It started many a conversation, just look.

The elevator reopened and the couple pushed out with their luggage, waving happily and wishing O’Hara and Mira a wonderful evening.

Jonathan looked quietly toward O’Hara’s black ankle boots, one crossed over the other. He couldn’t deny, O’Hara had always been skilled at forging connections.

The elevator clattered upwards again with a sway. He touched his fist to his mouth and focused rigidly on the floor numbers counting up, ignoring the whispers and flashes of twirling red and grey as O’Hara hummed Johann Strauss. That song. Was he . . . trying to say something?

“I thought the dancing was all made up,” Mira murmured.

“An old friend had ballroom-champion parents. He taught me . . . everything.”

Jonathan closed his eyes and squeezed his key-card.

Mira sighed. “Do you twirl everyone you meet?”

“It puts a smile on their faces, so why not?”

“A smile on their faces. Yeah, that’s why you do it.”

O’Hara didn’t respond, but there was another twirl of red and grey.

Jonathan shut his eyes—

The elevator groaned and stopped.

—he shot them open again.

The lights above died, and the doors weren’t opening. He drew in a deep breath and shoved the key-card into his pocket before he snapped it. Power cut. Probably due to the storm.

Any moment, it’d kick back on.

It would.

Keep it together.

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~ * ~ Annies Review ~ * ~

4+ Stars
As much as I love this author’s slow-burn romances, Tell Me Our Story just about killed me with its extraordinarily slow build. At first, I didn’t quite understand David and Jonathan’s connection. So, while the story was different and interesting, I wasn’t all that invested in these two as a couple beyond their palpable but unknown backstory. Honestly, I kept feeling like I had missed a step, a book, or something. Since I read this Advanced Reader Copy, the author added a prologue that includes a flashback referenced later in the story. Having now read that, I think it leads into the story well and that readers will fall for this couple’s beautiful story that much faster.

Beyond a different kind of start, Jonathan and David are an interesting couple. I loved the social media influencer and literary expert angle they both shared. The entire setup and background were unique, and the references made for a lovely story that helped build a tidal wave of feels. By the end of Tell Me Our Story, I was swept away and really enjoyed the couple.

After finishing up Tell Me Our Story, I thought a lot about how I questioned things at the start but still felt that underlying pull between Jonathan and David. It says a lot about an author’s ability to create chemistry and a lingering romance with palpable emotions even before the reader fully appreciates the history the characters share. I’m so glad I trusted in this author’s gift because Tell Me Our Story proved to be memorable and beautiful.

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure. A review wasn’t a requirement. ***

 

~ * ~ Jos Review ~ * ~

4 Stars

Anyta Sunday has a beautiful, almost lyrical style of writing. Her characters are drawn in words that are almost poetic and you can’t help but fall in love with them. This is the case here with Jonathon and O’Hara. As the blurb says this is a slow burn, opposites attract as well as a second chance romance. It is a very slow burn but it is definitely worth sticking with it. The payoff in this case is absolutely worth the patience. For me, it picked up as the back story is revealed, it grounds the characters and their actions and emotions came into focus. It is for this reason, the slight disconnection at the start that I felt, why I dropped it a star. In the end, I loved their happily ever after but I can imagine that some might not persevere and that is a shame.

The use of the competition to bring them together is a clever plot device and allows them to explore the different aspects of their relationship and love. While Jonathon may seem the grumpy one, and O’hara the light-hearted, this is actually not the case as behind merriments, O’hara hides insecurities and hurt. Getting a family as well as a boyfriend is an added layer of romance for me.

A slow start where a little more backstory might have made it clearer, the story is definitely worth persevering with for a deep and heartfelt HEA between two MCs that you will fall in love with.

**Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure. A review wasn’t a requirement.**

 

~ * ~ Kathys Review ~ * ~

3.5 Stars
I am a huge fan of Ms. Sunday’s work and devoured her last series with a Jane Austin twist. I know she is a fan of the slow burn and her men earn their HEAs. This book was much more challenging for me. The writing was choppy and stilted at times. At the 25% mark, I must have reread the blurb at least three times. I felt I was missing chunks of back history. I needed to try to get to know the MCs.
I really had a hard time connecting the two men and what they had in common. There is a past, but I was unsure for a long time exactly what it was. Even a simple description of their personalities was difficult because I honestly felt these men were strangers to me and each other.
Jonathan seems aloof and appears to embrace structure. He is caring for a younger sibling and is very closed off to most people. David O’Hara is loud, boisterous, and appears the polar opposite. It seems he left Jonathan at one point and is now back seven years later. Jonathan appears to be affected by his presence, and O’Hara clearly wants to be around Jonathan.
They are now partnered in a social influence challenge based on romance with a sizable monetary payoff. I honestly read that part several times because it seemed so unusual, and I kept feeling I was missing something again. O’Hara seemed more likely to participate in this contest with his personality, but Jonathan appeared out of place.
As the book progressed, I slowly learned more about the men’s relationship. Why Jonathan was so upset O’Hara left was a puzzle for me. Another issue I had was why O’Hara had to be so secretive about what he was doing and cut ties with his friend he adored. None of it seemed necessary. I also felt the reason O’Hara was estranged from his father just felt off.
I really love Ms. Sunday’s work and will absolutely read her next book. Fingers crossed, it will not have the amount of 3-word sentences and broken thoughts where the sentences ended midway. This wasn’t a win for me, but I will encourage others to read it because we all are different, and the author is pretty fabulous. Happy reading.

* * * Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure. A review wasn’t a requirement * * *


Enter the Giveaway:

To celebrate the release of Tell Me Our Story, Anyta is giving away a complete e-set of her hit, Love, Austen Series!

Enter the Rafflecopter giveaway for your chance to win!

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Direct Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/cc0f2a57425/?

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About the Author:

A bit about me: I’m a big, BIG fan of slow-burn romances. I love to read and write stories with characters who slowly fall in love.

Some of my favorite tropes to read and write are: Enemies to Lovers, Friends to Lovers, Clueless Guys, Bisexual, Pansexual, Demisexual, Oblivious MCs, Everyone (Else) Can See It, Slow Burn, Love Has No Boundaries.

I write a variety of stories, Contemporary MM Romances with a good dollop of angst, Contemporary lighthearted MM Romances, and even a splash of fantasy.
My books have been translated into German, Italian, French, Spanish, and Thai.

Contact: http://www.anytasunday.com/about-anyta/

Sign up for Anyta’s newsletter and receive a free e-book: http://www.anytasunday.com/newsletter-free-e-book/

Join my Facebook group to chat all things Slow Burn Romance:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SlowBurnSundays/

You can also find me here:
www.anytasunday.com
anytasunday@gmail.com

For information about new releases and freebies, follow me on BookBub:
https://www.bookbub.com/authors/anyta-sunday


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