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Ache

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His only refuge is his music. Connor Clay abandoned any hope of escaping his troubled life long ago, and has immersed himself in the hardcore punk scene, living every day as if it were his last. Somewhere between partying, playing shows and looking for trouble, he meets Shauna, an upper middle-class girl who seems to be everything he wants and needs. But is she destiny, or j His only refuge is his music. Connor Clay abandoned any hope of escaping his troubled life long ago, and has immersed himself in the hardcore punk scene, living every day as if it were his last. Somewhere between partying, playing shows and looking for trouble, he meets Shauna, an upper middle-class girl who seems to be everything he wants and needs. But is she destiny, or just a monumental distraction, keeping him from everything that’s important: his music, his band, and his friends? What we need most is always the hardest to see. ACHE is the first book in the Punk series.


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His only refuge is his music. Connor Clay abandoned any hope of escaping his troubled life long ago, and has immersed himself in the hardcore punk scene, living every day as if it were his last. Somewhere between partying, playing shows and looking for trouble, he meets Shauna, an upper middle-class girl who seems to be everything he wants and needs. But is she destiny, or j His only refuge is his music. Connor Clay abandoned any hope of escaping his troubled life long ago, and has immersed himself in the hardcore punk scene, living every day as if it were his last. Somewhere between partying, playing shows and looking for trouble, he meets Shauna, an upper middle-class girl who seems to be everything he wants and needs. But is she destiny, or just a monumental distraction, keeping him from everything that’s important: his music, his band, and his friends? What we need most is always the hardest to see. ACHE is the first book in the Punk series.

30 review for Ache

  1. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Love broken bad boys and of course I LOVE this cover model !!! Reider Robert was a very memorable part of my r&r&r&r getaway ❤ Love broken bad boys and of course I LOVE this cover model !!! Reider Robert was a very memorable part of my r&r&r&r getaway ❤️

  2. 5 out of 5

    Shane

    Ache was undoubtedly an interesting read. The story dealt with topics that are raw, gritty and relatable. But while I did see the potential, enjoyed the 80s time setting and liked the plot somewhat, it just didn't quite give me the fireworks that I was hoping for. In the opening chapter, Connor comes in contact with this intriguing girl that rattles his demeanor in a way. I was hooked and wanted to see where their relationship would go, if they would have one. Then going into the second chapter, Ache was undoubtedly an interesting read. The story dealt with topics that are raw, gritty and relatable. But while I did see the potential, enjoyed the 80s time setting and liked the plot somewhat, it just didn't quite give me the fireworks that I was hoping for. In the opening chapter, Connor comes in contact with this intriguing girl that rattles his demeanor in a way. I was hooked and wanted to see where their relationship would go, if they would have one. Then going into the second chapter, we find Connor setting his eyes on someone else. I was a bit confused at first because I hadn't realized that years had passed. So throughout I kept asking, "Where is that other girl?" That's when I skipped back and realized it was a few years later. For some reason I missed that. Anyway, Connor likes Shauna (for the wrong reasons) and really wants to give a relationship with her a chance. It's tough trying to win her, but they eventually come together. Now at first I thought, okay maybe things didn't work out with the previous girl (Bethany) and Connor wants to move on to someone else. However, I started to remember that he was a tad intoxicated that night and couldn't remember exactly who she was. I feel like the impact that his mystery girl left on him that one night made him go looking to find that in Shauna. But the whole time he's crushing on her, I was more curious about his bandmate Tonya. She's described as having deep issues. I had my suspicion about her and felt excited when I received confirmation during that confrontation at the laundromat. My curiosity heightened and I wanted to know so much more than what was being teased about Tonya, but I'm guessing we'll get her full story in the second book. Back to Connor and Shauna. This is where my feelings toward the story started to go all over the place. Shauna seemed like a nice girl at first; someone cool enough to not judge Connor and understand what he was going through, because he certainly had some painful physical and emotional scars. But all of a sudden they were moving so fast. I mean, I know that Connor had been crushing on her for some time, but it got too intense only after three days and I kind of felt turned off with Shauna's sudden switch in behavior. There were other things that seemed a bit random too, but they didn't bother me as much as how rushed some parts were. Again, it was a good read with clear and fluid writing that pulls you into the 80s punk rock scene, but for this kind of plot, I wish things had slowed down so I could connect more. I'm still interested in the series though, and am very curious about Tonya's story.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Bj

    Free on Amazon as of 10/17/14!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lynn

    Early 80's Calling! I had the best times of my life through the 1980's and this book focused very well on the scene during that era. Though at times it seemed some of Connor's story was disjointed or left out, in the end it came together and made sense. It's a tragically twisted, beautiful love story that I found I couldn't put down!

  5. 4 out of 5

    V.J. Chambers

    Ache is an NA romance set in the 1980s that’s all about punk music, and it is awesome. If I had to complain about anything, it would be two very minor things that aren’t really worth complaining about. One, I wish the book was not double spaced. It means I have to turn the pages on my kindle more often, and that means more movement on my carpal-tunnel-riddled hands, lol. Two, there’s a sort of prologue in the book, but it isn’t really called a prologue, it’s called Chapter One. And there’s notati Ache is an NA romance set in the 1980s that’s all about punk music, and it is awesome. If I had to complain about anything, it would be two very minor things that aren’t really worth complaining about. One, I wish the book was not double spaced. It means I have to turn the pages on my kindle more often, and that means more movement on my carpal-tunnel-riddled hands, lol. Two, there’s a sort of prologue in the book, but it isn’t really called a prologue, it’s called Chapter One. And there’s notation that says, “Summer 1980.” And then you get to Chapter Two, and it says, “Summer 1982.” Now, this is probably me just being a big idiot, but I sooo did not register the fact that it was two years later. So, I’m reading the book, and I’m like four chapters in, and I’m wondering where in the heck the girl from the first chapter is. I’m like, “Is she ever going to show back up again?” Anyway, at some point, something happened that made me go back and look, and then I realized that two years had passed, and then everything made way more sense. But I feel like if Chapter One was really a prologue or if there was a notation that said, “Two years later…” at the beginning of Chapter Two or something? Because, see I had to do math to figure out that two years had passed, and I am bad at math. So, Ache is told from the POV of Connor, who is a a guy in a band from the wrong side of the tracks. Connor is real. He’s not a cardboard cut-out fake romantic lead. You know the guy I’m talking about. The one that is all muscles and dimples and smirks, who then says sexy, self-assured things before melting into a puddle of chocolate sometime in Act Three. Instead of feeling like you’re reading a book about someone’s pretend fairy-tale man (who could never exist in the real world) Connor reads like an actual person. Does he have some typical “romance lead” traits? Yeah. He gets in fights to defend girls’ honor. He definitely has a painful past, full of awful secrets. He’s, you know, damaged. But he’s deeply vulnerable, and it’s impossible not to feel his anguish and to ache for him. Plus, the first line of the book is: “I’m sh**-faced and pissed.” How can you not love that? There’s a sort of love triangle in the book, and it’s really fun to read a book with a love triangle with two girls. Probably because it’s way easier to see who Connor should be with than it is to be sure who girl characters should pick. Or maybe it’s just me. Maybe I just identified with one of the girls, and so I thought it was obvious that was who Connor should pick. And he did. (Although there’s definitely room for a sequel at the end, and one is planned.) That aspect of the book really reminded me of Pretty in Pink, only with a male Molly Ringwald who gets into fights and plays in a punk band. The 80s stuff is really fun, especially the detailed descriptions of everyone’s outfits, which really allowed me to picture all the characters. Generally, I get bored with clothing descriptions, but in this case, it really set the mood and helped to keep me wired in to the decade and the setting. I’m going on about how fun it is, but I should mention that this book has some pretty dark plot points. A lot of the characters have been deeply hurt in their pasts, both physically and emotionally, and there’s a good bit of fallout from that. But… well, I think I’d say it’s more heavy than dark. This isn’t a book with a questionable moral center–with characters that are less than noble that you can’t decide to root for or not. This is a book about characters who will do what they have to in order to survive. Finally, there are some really beautiful passages towards the end about how experiencing art (music in this case) or making art are really integral to being human. I felt some of that took my own deeply held, but never quite articulated, thoughts and gave them shape and form–just the way the lyrics of a good rock song does. I highly recommend you pick up a copy of Ache. I loved it. I loved Connor. And I think you will too.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Marie Long

    This was an awesome, page-turning, New Adult romance on the darker side. The blurb and cover drew me in, and I was glad that I picked up this book from Amazon. The story, which takes place in the 1980s, follows Connor Clay, an 18 year-old punk rocker with a shattered past. The story is told from his POV as he goes through the trials in his life from past girlfriends, to family issues. The author covers some very deep and controversial subjects from rape, abuse, suicide, drugs, and more. The thi This was an awesome, page-turning, New Adult romance on the darker side. The blurb and cover drew me in, and I was glad that I picked up this book from Amazon. The story, which takes place in the 1980s, follows Connor Clay, an 18 year-old punk rocker with a shattered past. The story is told from his POV as he goes through the trials in his life from past girlfriends, to family issues. The author covers some very deep and controversial subjects from rape, abuse, suicide, drugs, and more. The thing I loved about this book was that these characters were real. They made real decisions, and I can connect with them. Especially Connor's friend and bandmate, Tonya. I was born in the 80s, so it was nice to go back in time and relive those awesome days of music and fashion, and even smile when some pop culture references are dropped here and there. The author did a great job in describing this era to the finest detail, which is a plus. There's very little to no sex in the book. But reading this story, there's so much going on that it's not needed. This is probably the first NA book I've read that doesn't feature explicit sex. There are sexual references here and there, but that's about it. I didn't realize this until after reading the book. But that goes to show you that you can still have a great NA book without having a bunch of sex in it. Toward the end of the story, it gets really heart-wrenching, as Connor breaks down about his past. I feel for him. He thinks no one can understand him. Despite it all, the story ends in a HFN, and I look forward to reading future books and seeing what Connor is going to do next. I'm definitely hooked on the story. I would have given this story 5 stars because I loved it so much, however, there was one BIG thing about this book that annoyed me to no end: the editing. I'm not sure if the author self-edited or what, but it seems obvious there was no professional editor involved. The typo and grammar issues were rampant throughout the story, and at times, took me out of the story, which annoyed me. Issues like (there/their/they're, to/too, its/it's) kind of things, capitalization and punctuation errors were all over the place. And there was a frequent misuse of the comma splice, which was the most annoying of them all. For example in Chapter 15: "The cop leans in the car, it's Officer Flashlight from the Laundromat -- Dano." Sentences like these were everywhere, and I think any professional editor would have gone through and fixed them.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Atunah

    I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I started reading this book. Its set in the early 80's, which is a time I have many memories off. Oh do I ever :) Right away I was intrigued by Connor the main character who takes us through the book from his POV. There is such a vulnerability there from the onset that I went from wanting to slap him at times and then just give him a hug. I got a sense early on that things have not been easy for him, yet there is a kind of unadulterated joy of life and bein I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I started reading this book. Its set in the early 80's, which is a time I have many memories off. Oh do I ever :) Right away I was intrigued by Connor the main character who takes us through the book from his POV. There is such a vulnerability there from the onset that I went from wanting to slap him at times and then just give him a hug. I got a sense early on that things have not been easy for him, yet there is a kind of unadulterated joy of life and being in the now that was quite something. He's young, confused, frustrated and of course often acts like he doesn't give a darn. The way the 1st person is written really brings this character to life in a very intimate way. I was quickly drawn into this story and pretty much read it all the way through with just some pesky sleep in between. What I really loved a lot was the smart dialogue between the characters. Sense of time and place is also very well done. Connor is in a punk type band in the early 80's and we follow him from 16 to 18 in this book. I am going to continue reading Connors story, Tonya's and everyone else. Its gritty, hopeful and lively all rolled in one. Kind of like a coming of age story.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Carrie Elks

    Set in the punk scene of the early 1980s, this is Connor's story. He's a young drop out, and a lead singer in a punk band, whose life is full of understandable rage. His voice comes across so clearly in the story that I almost feel I know him. I certainly wanted to comfort him when he was at his lowest ebb. I've read a lot of NA stories recently, but this one truly stands out among the rest. It may be the punk setting, which lends the story a truly interesting angle, or it may be the way the aut Set in the punk scene of the early 1980s, this is Connor's story. He's a young drop out, and a lead singer in a punk band, whose life is full of understandable rage. His voice comes across so clearly in the story that I almost feel I know him. I certainly wanted to comfort him when he was at his lowest ebb. I've read a lot of NA stories recently, but this one truly stands out among the rest. It may be the punk setting, which lends the story a truly interesting angle, or it may be the way the author draws the characters with a fine pencil, pulling me in until I felt part of the story. Whatever it was, I loved it. Ache is part of a series of books, and I can't wait for the next one to come out. I want to know more about Tonya, about Connor and what happens next to them both. I'll be keeping a keen eye out for book 2.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Emily Mcnew

    I was stuck between 3 and 4 stars for this one. I am not 100% sure how I really feel about this book. It was a touch repetitive, but not bad; however it was so horribly depressing. Books like this just make me sad because every one of the characters have issues and catastrophic pasts. I know horrific things happen to people, but I don't like reading books that keep a dark cloud looming over your head. If I want depressing, I would read the newspaper or watch the news. I want to escape the world' I was stuck between 3 and 4 stars for this one. I am not 100% sure how I really feel about this book. It was a touch repetitive, but not bad; however it was so horribly depressing. Books like this just make me sad because every one of the characters have issues and catastrophic pasts. I know horrific things happen to people, but I don't like reading books that keep a dark cloud looming over your head. If I want depressing, I would read the newspaper or watch the news. I want to escape the world's woes when I read, not go head first into them. That's just my 2 cents worth. A 3 star review to me is means the read didn't like or dislike a book so take it for what it's worth.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Angela

    <3...Born in the mid 70's didn't allow me to grow up in the era I should have, but I did get to ride the coattails of the PUNK scene and LOVED every minute of it. The shows, emotions and bonds formed are on point in this story. It's more real than almost any story I've read, at least more real to me, and I'm proud of this. I CAN NOT wait for the next book!!!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    A gritty dark read that leaves you desperate to know what happens to the broken Connor. Not given the best start in life Connor has some intense emotional baggage threatening to pull him under but the love of music and his friends help him through the blackest of moments. I found myself captured by the story immediately, I'm looking forward to reading more from this author.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jenny

    I have the next 2 books so I'll probably read them but I really didn't feel any real attachment to any of the characters. Connor grew up in an abusive household and has left home. He is living with a girl from his band as platonic roomates.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Monica Rae

    Good Idea. Bad Execution. A good idea, but horrible execution. The writing is all over the place. The story jumps around in an awkward way. It could have been great, but I was mostly confused the entire book.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Christine D

    Well it just wasn't my cup of tea.It was not a bad story I just couldn't get into it.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Linda Cotter

    Absolutely loved this book. PJ does an excellent job transporting us back to 82. I really enjoy the characters and learning about Connor and his past.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Annemarie

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00HGO4... free

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey

    Amazon Freebie 2/11/14

  18. 5 out of 5

    Leanne Michele

    3.5 stars.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Stephenie Oxley

    Such a sad story, it broke my heart. But I loved this book and I love Connor Clay. 5 massive stars from me.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Robin Sokol

  21. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jodie

  23. 4 out of 5

    Shannon Zak

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jana

  25. 5 out of 5

    Erika Milburn

  26. 5 out of 5

    Shemeika

  27. 5 out of 5

    Sheri Wallace

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lorena

  29. 4 out of 5

    Susan Lesh

  30. 4 out of 5

    Emily Eck

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