Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Blog Tour, Giveaway, and Christie's review: One Night Denied by Jodi Ellen Malpas


Title:One Night Denied
Series: One Night #2
Author: Jodi Ellen Malpas
Release Date: November 11, 2014
Rating:4.5 stars
Cliffhanger: yes

He's amazingly wealthy, sinfully gorgeous, and can bring her to heights of pleasure she's never before known. For Livy, there's no turning back. She's determined to be the light in Miller Hart's dark world. Yet this new life comes with a steep price...

Miller knows that the power he possesses hasn't come without sacrifices-but he won't let Livy be one of them. Though he wants nothing more than to have her in every way, his first duty is to protect her at all costs...from his sins, his enemies, and especially himself.

But as their insatiable affair intensifies, the two attract the attention of an obsessive-and dangerous-third party. Discovering new revelations about Miller that rock her to the core, Livy will have to decide whether he's ruined beyond repair. And he must face his fear that in order to save her, he may have to lose her after all...



I know I look out of place as I stand near the gym entrance, clearly hesitant, and looking a little overwhelmed. All the machines look like spaceships, hundreds of buttons or levers on each one, and I haven’t the first idea how to operate them. My one-hour induction last week did a great job of distracting me, but the information and instructions fell straight from my memory the second I left the exclusive fitness center. I scan the area, fiddling with my ring, seeing masses of men and women pounding the treadmills, going hell for leather on the bikes and pumping weights on huge lifting devices. They all look like they know exactly what they’re doing.

In an attempt to blend in, I make my way over to the water machine and gulp down a cup of ice water. I’m wasting time being hesitant when I could be releasing some stress and anger. I spot a punching bag hanging in the far corner with no one within ten meters of it, so I decide to give it a try. There are no buttons or levers on that. I help myself to the boxing gloves hanging on the wall nearby. After securing the Velcro, I give the bag a little poke. I’m surprised at how heavy it is. I inject some power into my weak arm and throw some effort into my next hit. I grunt too, and the bag shifts significantly this time, moving away from me and seeming to pause in midair before it’s on its way back toward me. Fast. I panic and quickly pull back my fist, then extend my arm to prevent being knocked to the ground. Shockwaves fly up my arm when my glove connects with the bag, but it’s moving away from me again. I smile and spread my legs a little, bracing myself for its return, then smack it hard again, sending it sailing away from me.

            My arm is aching already and I suddenly realize I have two gloved hands so I pummel it with my left this time, smiling wider, the impact of the bag on my fists feeling good. I’m breaking out in a sweat, my feet are beginning to shift and my arms getting into a rhythm. My shouts of satisfaction spur me on and the bag morphs into more than a bag. I’m beating the shit out of it and loving every moment.

I don’t know how long I’m there, but when I finally let up and take a moment to think, I’m drenched, my knuckles are sore and my breathing erratic. I catch the bag and let it settle, then take a cautious glance around the gym. No one is staring. I’ve gone totally unnoticed, everyone focused on their own workout. I smile to myself and collect a cup of water and a towel from the nearby shelf, wiping my brow as I make my way from the huge room. For the first time in weeks, I feel prepared to take the day on.

I head toward the changing rooms, feeling like a lifetime of stress and woes have just been knocked out of me. The urge to go back in and pound for another hour is hard to resist, but I’m already at risk of being late for work so I push on, thinking this could get addictive. I’ll be back tomorrow morning, maybe even after work today, and I’ll thrash that bag until there are no more traces of Miller Hart and the pain he’s caused me. I pass door after door, all with glass panes, and peek into each class that’s in session—yoga, spinning, kickboxing. I might try one or two. Or I could give them all a go.

As I’m passing the final door before the women’s changing rooms, something catches my eye. It’s a punching bag swinging from the ceiling hook, but no one’s in sight. I step closer to the door, then gasp and jump back as someone comes into view, bare chested and barefoot. I feel dizzy.

He has those shorts on, the ones he wore when he was trying to make me comfortable. I’m shaking, but my shock doesn’t stop me from peering back through the glass, just to check I wasn’t hallucinating. I wasn’t. He’s here, his ripped physique mesmerizing.  He looks violent as he attacks the hanging bag like it’s a threat to his life, punishing it with powerful punches and even more powerful kicks. His body weaves and dodges the bag when it comes back at him. He looks like a pro. He looks like a fighter.

I’m frozen on the spot as I watch Miller move around the hanging bag with ease, his fists wrapped in some kind of bandages, his limbs delivering controlled, punishing blows time and time again. Who does he see before him? My mind spins, questions mounting, as I quietly observe the refined, well-mannered, part-time gentleman become a man possessed, that temper he has warned me about clear and present. But then I retreat a pace when he suddenly grabs the bag with both hands and rests his forehead on the leather, his body falling into the now subtle sway of the punching bag. His back is dripping and heaving, and I see his solid shoulders rise suddenly. Then he begins to turn toward the door. It happens in slow motion. I’m rooted in place as his chest, slicked with a sheen of sweat, comes into view and my eyes slowly crawl up his torso until I see his side profile. He knows he’s being watched.

Buy Links:

Giveaway: Free copy of One Night: Denied

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I've been a fan of Jodi Ellen Malpas ever since she introduced us to beautiful, psychotic, over the top Jesse Ward. But it wasn't just her hero that kept me coming back for more. She has a way of pulling me in until I am completely immersed in her stories all wrapped up in her characters like a warm blanket. It's pure escapism in the most thrilling way. I was delighted to find that in M and Livy's first book, I got completely different characters, but that same exciting feel as I had in the past. As in most trilogy series, in book one, you get an introduction to the characters and then, inevitably, you're left hanging.

Now the second book, that's where the real "meat" of the trio is typically, and boy, did she deliver a strong story. This book was all about revelations, passion and intensity, and a WHOLE LOT of crazy. In fact, this is where the book veered off path for me some. The crazy train was running full speed ahead, so fast I almost got whiplash. I really debated whether to knock off a full star or not, but in the end, decided on half a star because of the truly gripping page turner that was delivered. I went through an almost 450 page book tense, on the edge, and I was pretty much a human flytrap with my perpetually dropped jaw.

For all of you Jesse fans who felt like M was too civilized and tame?

Let's just say M's wolf came out to play and that wasn't all that was revealed. Livy's mother's story, how it ties into her own seemingly doomed love affair, and the mystery of Miller were the main focus of One Night Denied. Livy struggles through the entire book, feeling despair at her disillusionment over Miller yet caught up in a web that she's unable to extract herself from.

I felt her pain and heartbreak. She was defenseless against M and his desperation for her. For their desperation for each other. I couldn't set this book down until I found out how this couple was going to make it back to each other.

"Let me put right what I've broken."
"That's me," I choke. "You've broken me."
"I can fix you, Olivia. And I need you to fix me, too."

But I was kind of enjoying the angsty, push and pull struggle they had going on. Miller was irresistible in his passion for her. She had become a part of him. So necessary to survival that when they were separated, he wasn't able to function anymore. She is his everything.

Miller is a dark soul and that really came out to play more here. I'm not going to say more than that, but some light is finally shed on his past, his OCD habits and phobias, and how he fell into his current situation.

I'm caught up in his confounding, dark world, and I have no faith that anything can free me from it, not even William, no matter how hard he tries.

Was I satisfied with this next installment to the series? That's an unequivocal yes. Despite the considerable length, it was fast paced and completely enthralling. I love the intensity you get from a JEM read. I felt like my heart never stopped pounding and there was a whole lot more depth than I was anticipating in both of their backstories. My one complaint was that the craziness steamrolled out of control in the last 20% or so. So much, my eyes bugged out over some of Livy's actions. When you step on this ride, be prepared for some bumps. Your hair's about to be blown back.

I'm giving this book a theme song. Every word of it reminds me of M and Livy. Remember this one? This is about as much of a spoiler for the plot I can give you. But it's perfect.

M and Livy's song

All the song mentions in the book:

Portishead's 'Glory Box'
Ellie Goulding's 'Explosions'
Florence and the Machine's 'Rabbit Head'
Kid Mac's 'Pursuit of Happiness'
Stone Roses' 'Waterfall'
Faithless's 'Insomnia'
Imagine Dragons' 'Demons'


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