Thoughtless by S.C. Stephens (wow… the ultimate in angst, heartache, crazy, blood-boiling moments and swoonworthy heroes!)
<—- This book runs the gamut on what I love to read!
- Gorgeous coveted rock star? Check!
- Rock star secretly starts falling for sweet “normal” girl.Check!
- Lots of drama and angst (and I mean ANGST!!!) Check!
- Infuriating situations involving all of the main characters (yes, Denny, I’m looking at you!! You started it! Grrrr!).*woops* sorry ’bout that. *ahem* Check!
- Making foolish decisions (or serious indecision) for fear of hurting/angering/losing … someone (Yes. That’s right. I’m talkin’ ’bout love triangles.)
- Uncomfortable & surprising subject matter that had me emotionally reacting to the point that I felt it, physically? DOUBLE CHECK!
Oh yes… be forewarned. If you haven’t read this yet, this book goes there. This isn’t your usual “safe” love triangle that we so often find in our romance books. This is the whole shebang that will have you seeing red while simultaneously feeling guilty for enjoying it so much. So who wants more?
I’ve received many requests for a “What to read after Thoughtless” list:
Heather: “ Do you know any books where… a celebrity/rich/popular/
rockstar/high ranking/etc (you get the gist) guy falls in love with the normal girl? Especially if they can’t settle down & kind of are playboys ya know.”
Christina: “I actually read Thoughtless and Effortless first and was trying to get over Kellan when I found this site…”
Ruth: “ I just finished devouring Thoughtless yesterday and am was in limbo as to what to read next. … Thoughtless had me possessed.”
… and I realized I finally have enough “similar” material to provide you. Similar in feel, angsty/agonizing subject matter, and of course, the coveted hero that can have any girl he wants, but only wants the one that is causing him (and us) so much heartache. And of course, he gives it right back! YES! I’ll keep saying it. I’m a sucker for book-pain. Bring it on!
And so are many of you feel the same way. Just look at the latest comment I received from a “Thoughtless” reader looking for another thrill and contemplating buying The Mighty Storm:
Jody: I LOVE the Thoughtless series but I have to ask myself if I can go, better yet my Kindle, through another beat down? I’m feeling rather jittery about this. Can I really do this??? I’m having angst just thinking about it! I will survive! Okay, I’m gonna do it! Here we go again……. Okay I bought it. I was sweating and I thought my heart was beating out of my chest, but I pushed the buy now button. It is in my possession. I have to go now and pace back and forth and give myself a pep talk. I’m rambling. I need to grow some and just do it! GOD!!!! CURSE YOU THOUGHTLESS. I need therapy just to read another love Triangle book because of YOU!!!!!! No, I don’t mean it Thoughtless. I love you! Yes, I’m still stalling!
My thoughts EXACTLY, Jody!!!! I laughed out loud for real when I read this, because this is exactly how so many of us feel, going into another super-angsty read.
Elizabeth: I feel bipolar because I want more, which requires more angst, but I want them to be happy.
Bia: I think the same “What’s wrong that I like these really angsty books”, but can’t help it too. It’s too real, and I. Love. It…”
Sandy: “ugghh, i live for these types of books but not sure my heart can take it, LOL ”
Maureen: “I can’t wait for the real version of your SUPER ANGSTY list. Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!”
So… are y’all ready for more? I guess we can never be fully ready-ready, right? That’s what’s so good about these. They take us by surprise. We go into them with a perfect mix of thrill/fear knowing we’re about to be put through the ringer. The shock value, the “NO WAY did he/she just do that!!!” These give us that adrenaline rush that keeps us on our toes. We’re book-adrenaline-junkies!!
P.S. —> Now these aren’t necessarily all 5-star *squee-worthy* for me, but they made enough of an impact on me, that I absolutely can’t forget them. And they *fit* quite nicely, on this list.
Oh, and… check out my review of Thoughtless.
Effortless book #2 by S.C. Stephens (but of course!!)
This is the sequel to “Thoughtless” and let me tell you… a sequel was needed! I’m going to assume everyone who has read Thoughtless has moved on to this one, but I’ve heard a few of you mumble that your heart needed a break after book #1. And like you, I too, took a bit of time off before jumping right back into this story. I totally get it!! And I will give you a *slight* reassurance. —> thank goodness for this one. Now I’m not saying it’s not angsty, because it is, but… the consensus is that it doesn’t make us freak out *quite* as badly.
But don’t think you’re safe (and I have a feeling the very reason you’re on this list is because you don’t want “safe” anyway, am I right?). We’re all here because we temporarily want those crazy feelings). Well, this one delivers. It’s got it’s own angst, PLUS it plays off of (and capitalizes on) the trauma we experienced in Thoughtless.
Check out my review of Effortless
Collide (Volume 1) by Gail McHugh <— (latest update to this list February 2013)
Not a rock star book… but one seriously intense love triangle that had my heart aching! And while “Gavin” might not be an actual rock star, he IS one in his own world. This one has a nice blend of that gorgeous eligible bachelor “millionaire tycoon” that falls for someone that cannot be his. Well, at least not without issue. I won’t tell you anymore, other than for me, this one had that incredible romantic steamy tension and full-on angst to keep me pining for Gavin. Plus, the heroine drove me nuts, (at times ;)) and yet, I still loved it. Gavin is my first BIG crush of 2013. He was wide-open when it came to his heart, and his reactions had me swooning. But what I loved most was that none of it was easy. We allllll had to work for it. Check out my review.
The Mighty Storm by Samantha Towle <——- YES!!!!!! OMG YES!!!!
This is THE perfect read if you’re looking for another book after Thoughtless. Now I’m not saying they are the same, but I am saying the feelings this one induces, the emotions you will experience (good and bad), and the crazy situations that the characters find themselves in… yes!!! DELICIOUSLY reminiscent of Thoughtless.
Is it wrong for me to think the angst is delicious? hehe. Too bad! They’re fictional, and I’m going with it!! Guilt… be gone with yourself. You are not needed here. This is our little fun “bad-girl readers” club and you’re just bein’ an angst-buzz kill. Tee hee!!!
So anyway… you have a wonderfully sexy bad-boy rock star, his best childhood girlfriend (writing a book about his career for her job) and they are on tour together. Oh. And she has a boyfriend at home. You fill in the blanks. Better yet. Let this book do it for you. Woooooo hooo!!! Remember how much I thought “Bared to You” was THE perfect read after “Fifty Shades”? Well THIS is the one, right after the Thoughtless series.
Check out my book review of The Mighty Storm
Groupie by Ginger Voight <—- NEW just added to this list, November 12th 2012!!
All the reasons why a girl should never fall in love with a rock star, are played out, right here. The highs and lows of being the center of “his” attention, while all of the other girls vie for it, and then… wondering if perhaps, you’re just a groupie to him, too? Or maybe not? This story will take you on that journey, and let me tell you, there will be some heartache and many infuriating moments to deal with. Sweet *love* butterflies, and then those moments where your stomach just… drops. The saga continues in book #2 (Rock Star) and the author is currently writing book #3 as we speak. You can also get the first 2 books bundled at a great bargain price. —> Groupie/Rock Star Bundle
How to Kill a Rock Star by Tiffanie DeBartolo
You want rock star angst? I’ll give you angst. This one ranks VERY high after Thoughtless if you’re in the mood for an ugly cry. Indie rock star with an amazing following (and a bad-boy “slut” reputation) befriends his new roommate (sister of his friend). Their friendship… you know. Becomes more. But then the bigwigs offer him the opportunity of a lifetime and he struggles with his artistic principles and the dream of becoming huge. There’s enough angst for ya, right there. BUT NO. The angst is in the romance part. Oh boy, if you let yourself go with this one, (and it’s not hard to), you will… likely, hate me. *giggle* It’s gonna be so fun!!! Wanna see the latest “post” from fellow readers about this one (and I hear about it almost every. single. day):
Jaime: Very tired today because i stayed up all night reading How to Kill a Rock Star. OMG! I’m still not ok! That was an emotional roller coaster and SO many times I wanted to get off of the ride, but I had to know how it ended. Glad I read it. I hated it so much i loved it. But I’m still not ok!
Maryse’s Book Blog: *hug* Join the club 😉 I always wonder how many people who have taken my personal recommendation for it, hate me at… some point. hee hee!
Jennifer: After seeing your review Maryse, I ve been wanting to read it!!
Jennifer. DO IT!!! Alllll of you (who like the angst)… doooooo it!! (quick little tidbit) –> I occasionally hear that the very beginning is a bit slow. I don’t remember feeling that way, but that is because I read reviews that said I was in for it, so I was already IN for it, ya know? If you are one of the “it’s too slow” readers… please. Stick with it. Chances are, you’re gonna freak out.
The Opportunist by Tarryn Fisher
Annnnnd the angst just keeps on coming. Fair to say, there are no rock stars in this one, but the “hero” is highly coveted. So highly in fact, that two girls are willing to lie, deceive and cheat for his attention, and in the process, almost (do? – i’ll let you find out) lose sight of themselves. But there’s big history there, and one that I wouldn’t have been so willing to let go of, either. This is “Olivia’s” take, on her journey to getting/keeping Caleb, and well let’s just say it’s a wild and crazy ride. *shakes head* WOW.
And… the other? Hey, her book is coming out next, so who am I to judge? But I did/do judge, because I WAS Olivia during this read, and let’s just say, we have a VERY active “The Opportunist Support Group” going on right now.
Check out my book review of The Opportunist
Dirty Red (book #2 of The Opportunist series) by Tarryn Fisher
Okay, this one isn’t actually out yet, but come on. WE KNOW it’s going to be angst-ridden and we are simply dying for the sequel. ‘Cause that’s what this one is. Not a re-telling of the last book (although I have a feeling we’ll relive a few of those moments, too), but a continuation from where we left off, from Leah’s perspective (grrrr. Dirty RED!!). So in the meantime, if you haven’t read The Opportunist (see above) read it.
I cried. Eventually. Once the shock wore off. 😉
And Tarryn (the author) told us this (on her Facebook page):
“It should be out by the end of the year.” —> expected release date just announced! December 28th 2012!!!
“Dirty Red propels the story forward, it is not a rehashing of what already happened.”
Avoiding Commitment (Avoiding Series) by K.A. Linde
Avoiding Commitment will have you second-guessing your sanity (her sanity, their sanity, everyone’s sanity) every step of the way. One minute you want them… next minute you don’t. One minute you “pine”, next minute you want to kick “him” you know where. One minute you get her. Next minute you’re thinking No!! No no no no no!!!!! Don’t!!! Don’t doooo it. Ohhhhhhh nooooooo! You did it. LOL!!!!
But through it all, you will feel the pain. The relief. The elation. The realization. The “other” realization… the pain again. And so on. It’s madness I tell you! Like a soap opera on steroids, but… there’s something, even though you know you shouldn’t, that keeps you… hoping. And wondering… why? It will keep you guessing to the very end.
I described it my feelings this way, in a recent discussion:
“I loved hating *spoiler*. … UGH!!! That was rough, but I secretly thrilled at the audacity…”
Check out my review of Avoiding Commitment
Avoiding Responsibility (Avoiding Series) by K.A. Linde
Another book that so many are highly anticipating, and should be out within the next month or so. I’ve read it! And I will review as soon as the release becomes available, but in the meantime, let me say this book is to “Avoiding Commitment”, what “Effortless” was to “Thoughtless”. Having it’s own angst and drama (this author is great at the shenanigans!!), but definitely playing off of our scars from book #1. Also traumatic, but more… hrmmmm… I suppose, easy to swallow. Check out my review.
Most of you already know that this is one of my favorite books of all time, and just might be THE book that introduced me to absolute bad-boy agony. Confusing friendship that blurs the line between best friends and so much more. Coupled with extreme resistance, saying one thing (but internally wanting another) and in doing so, creating so much heartache for all involved.
Travis may not be a rock star, but he IS one, in his own way. Unbeatable “underground” MMA fighter, smart and gorgeous, and so confident it borders (okay no, it IS) cockiness. But how can he help it? He’s almost perfect. (hee hee!! Okaaaayy okay… that was my own opinion, ’cause I do know some of you who would beg to differ, but you know me ‘n’ Travis… It is what it is 😉 ).
And as I was saying… every girl wants him. Until one… doesn’t. Let the games begin!! Except at some point, you’ll want the games to stop. You’ll wish they’d just… “give in” already, so that you, the reader (aka: the heroine) can finally indulge in every bit of this love affair with “Travis”. And just when you think it’s safe… That’s all I’m gonna say.
Check out my book review of Beautiful Disaster
Fall From Grace by Christine Zolendz
Plenty of “local” rock star angst in this one and Shane is obviously someone who has the potential to make it BIG. And all of his gorgeous groupies agree. Shane reminded me (well actually the “feel” of this story as a whole) reminded me of a mix between Travis & Kellan (Thoughtless & Beautiful Disaster).
Grace is hiding (and suffering from) a secret and pining over the one she believes to be the love of her life. That soul-deep knowledge that she was meant to be with only “him”, and she has no intention of ever looking at anyone else. On a quest to find him again, there can be no other for her. Until she meets Shane. 😉 And while she resists Shane with all her might (to Shane’s absolute exasperation), the romantic tension is undeniable, which of course, results in plenty of angst!
Check out my review of Fall From Grace
Sheet Music – A Rock ‘N’ Roll Love Story
This was one of my first “forays” into indie published work and lemme tell you, I was not expecting the raw, gritty, unsafe, uncomfortable yet almost unputtdownable storyline. It can be quite… dark at times. I fell hard with this rock star and then felt absolutely torn as to the drama that took place. A very long book that eases you into comfort zones, and yanks you out of them just as quickly. Years of a love affair gone bad, good and bad again. Moments where you hate him, and side with her, and then other times, where it is the complete opposite. Back then, I found the angst to be a bit much, perhaps overkill, and if you read my review you’ll see what I struggled with. Maybe to re-read it now since I’ve been put through the ringer a ton of times, and realize I like that kind of thing… I might appreciate the heartache, secrets and lies a whole lot more. I think I was shell-shocked, back then. Hehe. I loved it and yet… had a few serious reservations.
But I do remember one thing I struggled with the most, and had it not been for that, I may have just flat-out LOVED it. (not really a spoiler but if you want to have no idea going in, what to expect, scroll past this below)…
It was the length of time that was allowed to pass during the bad times/breakups (and I mean long…) that perturbed me. The second book in the series (For All The Right Reasons – see below), I really liked (loved?) although I struggled with the exact same issue, keeping me on the reserved side of my enthusiasm.
But if you want the whole “being in love with a rock star” angst, and all of the drama that comes with it (drugs, tours, rumors, groupies…) then give this one a go. Theme, and angst wise, it fits this list perfectly.
Check out my review of Sheet Music – A Rock ‘n’ Roll Love Story
Love Unscripted by Tina Reber
This one doesn’t have a rock star, but it sure has the next best thing! An a-list “it” actor that can have anyone he wants, and his “chance encounter” with a gorgeous female bartender (rescuing him from crazed fans). Couple that with his quick infatuation with her, and his very determined “courting” of her, and you’ve got yourself a dream come true! I mean… you know. Had she been one of his fans, chasing him down the street, asking for his autograph, or even a picture, who knows. He may not have even looked at her twice (cute or not). But the fact that he met her the way he did, the fact that she knew who he was but didn’t treat him as his fans did… made the “normal girl” fantasy, a reality. Or not. ‘Cause it’s a book. Tee hee!!
But still, this isn’t just about sweet love, kisses and butterflies (with the occasional insecurity thrown in for drama’s sake). There’s a price to pay when dating an actor, and every fan, stalker, supporting actress and paparazzi guy wants her to pay it. And it’s not just in lies and deception, either. Some real drama comes into play, and really turned me upside down!
Check out my review of Love Unscripted
For All The Right Reasons (book #2 after “Sheet Music”) by Ann Lister
<—- cringing at the cover, but the story inside is so much more exciting. Gorgeous big time rock star (aren’t they all? YES!!! hehehe) that requests a famous (and pretty – lucky him!) photographer to tour with them and take concert, and behind the scenes photos for their biography. Of course, big time drama ensues, as she struggles with life on the road with a famous band, and resists the lead’s advances.
But beware. This one, too (as did it’s predecessor “Sheet Music”) had it’s eye-rolling, and over-the-top angrifying moments. Not as dark, but at times so infuriating that you really wanted to stop reading. There was a part that… UGH!!!! An important part, too. And I mean, this part of the storyline took me from absolutely wholeheartedly loving the story to almost… not being able to recommend it.
This is straight out of my review, but I couldn’t have said it better a second time.
“This author is no holds barred when it comes to the drama. In each of her books, I’ve found myself seriously angry at the occasional idiocy of her characters, and the unnecessary trouble they make for themselves. I’ve felt annoyed and even a little distraught. Yet, her books have a slow enough progression that I get sucked right in no matter how dumb everyone’s behaving. I believe and live every detail with them, and there are plenty of “weak-at-the-knees” moments that help me get over the tragic parts.”
But still… this is one that had me reading non-stop, had me agonizing with the characters and mumbling to myself, wanting to screech at the “moments” of absurdity and also had my heart beating wildly at times. So I would say… if you decide to read it, go into this knowing, you’re gonna go WTF!? at some point. Just sayin’ ;). When I look back on my reading experience of it, did I “overall” like it. YES. Dare I say… maybe even loved it. Mostly.
Check out my review of For All The Right Reasons (for a better idea of what I went through 😉 )
And here is a BONUS section!
A few more of my favorite rock star romance books (so far)! Angsty (sure) but not to the same crazy level as the books above. More fun and romance, than angst and heartache.
Falling Star (Earth Scents) by Olivia Brynn
Famous country star meets pretty florist who doesn’t recognize him. At first he’s internally arrogant about it, and then he’s intrigued and dates her without letting her know “who” he really is. And then it gets fun! There’s a moment when I was all… swoooooon and OMG Eeeeeeep!!
Backstage Pass (The Sinners on Tour) by Olivia Cunning
Sweet (not usually a bad-boy) famous guitarist meets his biggest fan. But SHE’S the one only wanting one night. Interesting twist on heartache! Brian is still, to this day, one of my biggest “book-rockstar” crushes.
Rock Star’s Girl (A Hollywood Dating Story) by J.F. Kristen
Pining over her up-and-coming rock star best friend (who prefers the “friends” title), until she meets the real thing. Famous rock star, and HE wants her. But you know. There’s drama, and all that. Very good!
Please Don’t Stop The Music (Choc Lit) by Jane Lovering
Recently “ex-rockstar” sort of… in hiding. Until one of his fans happens upon him, by accident. He’s got secrets, and their tentative friendship reveals a LOT. I actually loved this one!