Spotlight Saturday Presents:
Season Vining is the author of Beautiful Addictions, a New Adult Romantic Suspense novel from St. Martin’s Griffin. She received her three-book deal and agent representation as a result of attending the 2013 Jambalaya Writers’ Conference. She first gained attention for the book in Amazon’s Breakthrough Novel Award in which the story was a Quarterfinalist. Season is a graphic designer by trade and adores all form of art. She’s a fan of live music, vintage cars, and people who know the difference between their, there, and they’re.
Josie Banks is a girl without a past. After being found unconscious with no memory, she was shuffled in and out of foster homes where she suffered years of abuse. An experience that left her broken, damaged, and clinging to drugs and meaningless hook-ups to numb her pain.
When Josie disappeared years ago, she took a piece of Tristan with her. She’s the girl he thought he lost forever—the one he’s never been able to forget. Now a twist of fate has brought them back together, and he never wants to let her out of his inked arms again. But Tristan is haunted by a dark past of his own. On the run from ruthless criminals that shattered Josie’s world years ago, reentering her life puts them both in danger.
As Josie and Tristan’s lives become tangled once again, they find themselves unwilling and unable to escape the relentless pull that draws them together. But will the past leave their love in ruins—or bind them together for a lifetime?
Josie craved his touch and she couldn’t understand why they hadn’t had sex yet, or any form of it. She wanted it; her fingers ached to touch him in places she’d only yet imagined. It was obvious that Tristan felt the same way, so she failed to make sense of his need to take things slow. She longed to feel his sweat slicked skin against hers and inhale the scent of their bodies combined. Not ready to admit any kind of emotional connection, she desperately needed a physical one. It was the only thing she was comfortable with.
She found it curious that her dependency seemed to be shifting. No longer did she need meaningless sex or drugs to numb her. Josie only wanted to submerge herself in Tristan, to soak up everything he offered. He was her new addiction.
Tristan was in a constant state of arousal in Josie’s company. Never able to completely relax, his muscles remained tense and rigid with yearning. If it had been any other girl, he would have taken her already, hard and fast, several times. But he knew that Josie used sex to avoid attachment. He didn’t want to be just another mark on her therapeutically notched bedpost. To him, Josie was something new, yet familiar, something he wanted to cherish. He felt like two ancient souls, separated for a lifetime, had suddenly been reunited.
Unable to contain the sexual tension clawing at her skin, Josie slid her notebook from her lap and straddled Tristan. He gave her his lopsided grin as his long fingers wrapped around her waist. Josie smiled triumphantly, thinking that she’d already won.
“What are you up to?” he asked, dipping his head so that his lips pressed ever so softly to her shoulder.
“I need to feel you Tristan. Just touch me.” The sound of Josie’s words echoed around the quiet room. “I want you.”
Those three little words left him breathless. Such a brazen statement from Josie sent his willpower into a faltering tailspin. He hummed in agreement, sliding his kisses down to her neck.
Josie ran her nails along Tristan’s scalp, making his eyes close in contentment. The feel of her hot body pressing down on him caused momentary insanity, totally emptying his brain of rational thought. He wanted her more than anything he’d ever wanted before. Not here, not now. There was so much more to say.
“Can I take you out?” Tristan asked, suddenly moving his hands back down to her waist and resuming a neutral position.
“Out of the apartment?”
“Out on a date,” he clarified.
“A date?” Josie asked, her frightened voice making the words sound foreign.
"You know, an appointment for a particular time, especially with a person to whom one is sexually or romantically attached."
"Are we attached?" she asked, not really knowing what she wanted the answer to be.
"More than you know," he answered.
Michele's 5 Star Review
Gritty, raw, emotional, poetic…..simply beautiful. This is not, and I must repeat, NOT your average love story mystery. Forget everything you know and think about the romance genre because Season Vining just threw it out the window!
Season managed to write real characters, flawed and emotional, so that you can feel the emotion, the raw pain, the isolation, despair and heartache. Yet she manages to show that the great power of love, one that changes a person to their core, one that carries for all time, even in the absence of a physical person, exists.
Both hunted, both haunted. Will there be a happily ever after? This one will keep you up all night turning pages to find out what happens next. Well done Season! I am excited to see what you come up with next!
**ARC provided in exchange for an honest review.
Shawn and Michele's Inquiring Minds Want To Know:
DI~ What inspired you to write your first novel?
SV~ A haunting dream inspired the alley scene in Chapter 1 of my novel. It was dark and powerful and somehow inspired a love story that begged to be written.
DI~ What books/authors have inspired your life most?
SV~ In the early days I read a lot of Babysitters Club and Sweet Valley High. I loved those books. Later on I was moved by Anne Rice, Stephen King, Dan Brown, Dean Koontz, Toni Morrison, and books like The Outsiders and Slaughterhouse-Five. As you can see, I didn’t read romance until much later in life.
DI~ Whom would you consider a writing mentor(s)?
SV~ There are a couple of people in my local writers’ group that I admire and who have helped me develop and sharpen my skills.
DI~ What book(s) are you reading now?
SV~ I just finished Anything He Wants by Sara Fawkes and started The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. Variety is the key to happiness.
DI~ What are your current writing projects?
SV~ I’m currently working on my second book. So far, it’s untitled. It’s going to be a crazy road trip and an ode to the 80’s. Stay tuned.
DI~ What would we find you doing when you're not at the keyboard?
SV~ Playing with my Corgi, Chap. Reading. Cooking. Drinking wine. Sometimes I do freelance graphic design.
DI~ What are your favorite setting(s) to read/write about?
SV~ I love writing about familiar places. Even more so, I love reading about them. But nothing takes me out of a story quicker than something incorrect about a setting I know.
DI~ If you could be any character in your book(s), which would you be and why?
SV~ I’d love to be Alex minus the drug dealing. I can’t imagine having all that confidence and still being down to earth.
DI~ I’m a potential new fan. Sell me your book in ten words or less.
SV~ Troubled girl. Genius boy. Shared past. Reconnected love. Threatened future.
Brandy L. Rivers Wants To Know:
Top five favorite titles (these do not have to be favorite books)-
Interview with a Vampire - what an interesting and original promise this title makesWhere the Sidewalk Ends - this poses a destination that I’d never thought of beforeTick Tock - it immediately gets your adrenaline pumping, your curiosity peakedThe Submissive - no beating around the bush (pun intended) on what’s in storeWhere the Wild Things Are - makes you want to know the definition of Wild Things
Felicia Tatum Asks:
Top ten books turned to movies-
In no particular order…
The Color Purple
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (the original movie)
Harry Potter series
Stand by Me
The Princess Bride
The Wizard of Oz