Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Since falling in love with Kristen Ashley's writing in the Rock Chick Series, I've decided to dedicate one week each month to more of her books. First up is the Colorado Mountain Series, at the insistence of my friends Erin, Cindy and Jess. But this time around, I'm doing "He Said/She Said" reviews with my guy, who read this series first.

Sweet Dreams (Colorado Mountain, #2)Series: Colorado Mountain #2
Category/Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Self-Published (now published by Forever)
Publication Date: 4/23/11
Format: ebook
Pages: 554
Source: Purchased
Rating: 5 stars

Lauren Grahame has spent her whole life thinking something special was going to happen. She didn’t know what it was, she just knew it would one day be hers. But she learned the hard way that special wasn’t on offer.

So, after divorcing her cheating husband, Lauren searched for nothing special and she thought she found it when she landed a job as a waitress in a biker bar in Carnal. It was perfect: a nothing job in a nowhere bar in Nowheresville.

Then Tatum Jackson walked in. Part-owner of the bar, he took one look at high-class Lauren and wanted nothing to do with her. And he made this known, loudly.

Tate’s angry insults seared in her brain, Lauren decides the feeling is mutual and she doesn’t want anything to do with the gloriously handsome Tate Jackson. The clash of the bartender and barmaid begins but, even though Tate makes his change of mind clear (in biker-speak, a language Lauren is not fluent in), Lauren is intent on going her own way.

Until a serial killer hits Carnal and Lauren finds out Tate isn’t a bartender, he’s a bounty hunter. He stakes his claim for Lauren before he goes on the hunt for a killer but Laurie doesn’t speak biker nor does she understand bounty hunters and Tate comes back from the hunt to find his old lady has moved on.

Life throws curveball after curveball at Laurie and Tate. As secrets are revealed, women are brutally murdered, and Lauren tries to find her inner biker babe.

He Said...

Sweet Dreams (The Colorado Mountain Series #2) is another great book of Kristen Ashley’s from start to finish. Lauren Grahame, recent divorcee, is in search of her life, her home. She ends up in the small town of Carnal, Colorado, realizing this is where she belongs and lands a waitressing job at Bubba's. Here, she meets Tatum Jackson, ex-football star, ex-cop, current bounty hunter and co-bar owner of Bubba's. Throw Wood (childhood friend of Tate), Neeta (Wood’s sister and current/ex-lover of Tate) and Brad (ex-husband to Lauren) into the mixture and it makes for one helluva love triangle/fight for the women. Add murder, mystery and carnage, and it makes for a good read for the men.

Lauren's first day on the job was not a very good first face-to-face impression of Tate when she overhears him calling her “some sorry-ass, old, fat, suburban bitch…” Once he realizes this, he tries to right the wrong, but she throws sass and is not having any of it. At this juncture, these two seem like there is nothing in the world that can bring them together. Then, as the story unfolds, nothing can tear them apart.

As always, KA delivers an excellent and interesting cast of secondary characters and you need to read this to find out all about the rest!!!

She Said...

Sweet Dreams is unique for me among all of the KA books because I initially despised the hero, Tate Jackson. He was rude, abrupt, and he hurt my beloved Lauren's feelings. Badly. It didn't matter that he said he was sorry, and offered up a true reason why he'd said something so hateful, that he was having a shit sandwich in the middle of a shit storm, he lost it and he was sorry. Words hurt, and Lauren wasn't having his sorry excuse.

But then, Tate proved himself to Lauren, and to me, not using his words, but his deeds. The man went above and beyond expectation to be there for Lauren, to keep her safe and alive. And somewhere along the way, Tate Jackson gave Lauren Grahame "Special". Or more accurately, Tate and Lauren found Special together.

Sweet Dreams has all the signature Kristen Ashley moves: a hot, badass man who's not particularly verbose, but that only means that everything he says is worth listening to; we also get a very verbose heroine, a woman who's may be down on her luck, but finds a home wherever she lands, changing the lives of everyone she meets; there's a great cast of secondary characters that will make you chuckle, but also provide poignant moments along the way; and we get a chilling mystery, one that plays a significant but not overwhelming part in the plot, and will have you on the edge of your seat at about 90-95% mark.

There's been a thought that's been tickling my brain throughout all of my KA reading, but particularly in this series. I tried to grab that thought, because I just knew that it would be so important to me and explain why I feel so strongly about Kristen Ashley's books and how they've impacted my life. My easily-distracted brain was not especially cooperative, but I finally caught it.

I like reading about verbally articulate men who can readily lay out their feelings and emotions to the woman they love. I do. But that's not what I grew up around, and though he does do very well, that's not what I married either. I know men who don't pour out their emotions through words, but through deeds. But when the time comes that it needs to be said, he can say it. And it will always rock your world. It might not come out exactly with the words a girl dreams of hearing, but if you listen closely and know the man, what he says will be even better. And that's why I've found this series to be so relatable for me. Through these men who prove their love with actions, and the heroines who's thoughts can describe and label these feelings I've experienced, but never found the words to describe, I've found a way to communicate. When I can't find the words, I can point to a line in one of Kristen Ashley's books. Or I can send a surprise text. Whatever method I use, KA's words give voice to my thoughts.

Colorado Mountain Series

  The Gamble (Colorado Mountain, #1) Sweet Dreams (Colorado Mountain, #2) Lady Luck (Colorado Mountain, #3)
 Breathe (Colorado Mountain, #4) Jagged (Colorado Mountain, #5)

(covers lead to GoodReads page)

Kaleidoscope (Colorado Mountains #6) release 2/4/14
Purchase Sweet Dreams

About the author:
Kristen Ashley was born in Gary, Indiana, USA. She nearly killed her mother and herself making it into the world, seeing as she had the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck (already attempting to accessorise and she hadn't taken her first breath!).

Kristen grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana but has lived in Denver, Colorado and the West Country of England. Thus she has been blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her posse is loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write.

Kristen was raised in a house with a large and multi-generational family. They lived on a very small farm in a small town in the heartland and existed amongst the strains of Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon and Whitesnake (and the wardrobes that matched).

Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music, clothes and love was a good way to grow up.

And as she keeps growing up, it keeps getting better.

Website  |  Twitter  |  Facebook   |  GoodReads



  1. Oh, when Lauren overhears Tate calling her that, I wanted to punch him the nose! Yes, I do realize we're talking about a fictional character, lol! But seriously, it took a bit for me to forgive him, tool!

    Andrea, you hit the nail on the head about the men in this series. They speak volumes with their actions rather than words. You know what they say, "talk is cheap" so I'll take a man like that rather than one spinning me with fancy empty words.

    Awesome reviews, Eric and Andrea! :)

  2. I knew you both were fans of this series from the last review, but it seems to me you enjoyed this one even more. I like the sound of this story even though I'm not sure if this is the book for me. I hope you'll enjoy the next one. Great review you two :)

  3. Kristen Ashley should be proud to have such an amazing fan base out there. :-) You rock honey! I've only read one of her books before, it was a motorcycle club story, supposedly the start of a series, but I quickly figured out it wasn't really. Now I need to track down a REAL list of her books (in series order) so I can figure out where to start. Like you I really enjoyed the deeds not words approach of her men, which makes them REAL, and the points in the book where they said what they felt in blunt honest words. It made the romance portion feel a lot more relate-able than other stories. :-) Glad this one lived up to your expectations - I think 1 week a month sounds like a great idea!

  4. Every time I read one of your reviews for this author, you get me more and more excited to read one of her books! I am dying to see what she is all about for myself now. Great reviews!

  5. have me drooling over this series. I love a man who shows you how he feels too. Loving your idea about featuring one author a month:) Wonderful review and so glad you are enjoying these Colorado men.

  6. It's great to hear that you grew to appreciate Tate's character eventually. You're making me really curious about this series now! I'm glad you both enjoyed this installment. :)

  7. On the edge of my seat at such a final stage of the book? Whaaat? That sounds.. quite thrilling to be honest with you. I love the fact that Eric read them first and now you two are comparing your thoughts. DO THIS MOOOOREEE!!! Haha. I wonder what Eric would think of The Vincent Boys *wink wink* I think it'd be kind of disastrous. Hey, you guys should read something like The 5th Wave or Altered (by Jennifer Rush) or something that's more like a guy's book and see how your thoughts differ then. Anyhow, you guys really make me intrigued about this series and I just can't get over the love you have for KA, Andrea! Lovely reviews:)

  8. Very neat review style! Glad to hear that even though hated at first, he proved himself by deeds

  9. I like how you've gone about this post Andrea! I have a good guy friend who likes to read too, but it's always hard recommending books to him that I love and I know he wouldn't read, but it's great to see Eric giving this book a go and reading his perspective on it! :)

  10. I love it when a man shows his love by his actions. Most men have trouble expressing how they feel, but when it comes down to it, actions really do speak louder than words. I'm glad Tate redeemed himself after saying things that hurt Lauren. I think that the whole mystery, and murder in the plot sounds like it really added to the story too. Great Review Andrea and Eric :)

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

  11. Dude, these reviews rock! I can barely get my friends to read. I can’t imagine trying to get my boyfriend to read. I hope to see more of these he said/she said reviews :)

  12. Hahaha that's not what you married either. Great save after! Looking forward to reading your review on Cinderella Screwed Me Over. Looks cute & love the title.

  13. I love getting the male and female perspectives, Andrea! (and Eric ;) I'm going to have to set aside a month and dedicate it to Kristen Ashley! LOL

  14. Another one you love? What's wrong that this Colorado girl hasn't read these books? Must say the cover's don't do the state justice.

  15. It sounds like this series keeps getting better. Great reviews guys!

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