Friday, November 28, 2014

Promo...Is This All There Is? Is This What I Want? by: Patricia Mann #excerpt #giveaway #review 5 stars!!

I have said many times I'm not a fan of books involving cheating or infidelity but these books were so much more than that. I read them both back to back so I'm going to do the best I can to separate the two. Both books were five stars and both books had my stomach in my throat, heart pounding, and thinking...for longer than a week now. I can honestly say a day hasn't gone by that I haven't thought about these books since I finished them. I don't know if it's because the subjects approached hit so close to home or if it was just different from what I usually read. It's like I was there with the characters and living through them. The author did such a good job with her description and character building that even if I didn't care for the story (which I did) the writing was five stars.
*Please be prepared in reading my reviews that I may have some spoilers. I will try my best not to, but if you want to go in blind I would skip them.
*Review copies provided by author.

Is This All There Is?


Beth Thomas’ seemingly perfect life is about to take a detour. At thirty-five, she’s married to her college sweetheart, has two adorable kids, and finds fulfillment teaching part time at the local university.

But when a friend persuades her to go dancing on a rare night out, a chance meeting with a handsome former student changes the course of her life. Loud music, too much to drink, and the thrill of feeling young again lead to an unforgettable kiss that was never supposed to happen. Beth feels wanted again, listened to, cared for, but she knows it’s wrong.

She tries to put the memory behind her, but he pursues her, drawing Beth back to temptation. As she travels deeper into Dave’s world, Beth struggles to choose between what her mind says is right and what she truly craves.

My 5 star review
Beth feels like she's missing something. She just goes through her daily routine with her husband and kids. Nothing really changes and there is no excitement anymore. Everything is just comfortable and no one (Beth or her husband Rick) tries to change things or spice things up.

After a night out with her best friend drinking and dancing Beth's world completely changes from predictable to very unpredictable. She makes some bad decisions and soon starts having an emotional/cyber affair with her former student Dave. The affair begins to become more than emotions when things actually get physical. He gives her the attention and emotional connection she craves. Beth struggles with self-esteem issues and he is constantly complimenting her and telling her how beautiful and wonderful she is. Once the affair is discovered by Rick the couple have to make a save their marriage or not?

Like I said earlier the writing is spectacular the depth and emotion of this book was so real it hurt to read at times. There is a particular scene after Rick discovers the truth and they have this argument and then there is this raw connection that brought tears to my eyes.

This was another book where I wasn't that fond of the characters but it made it that much more real to me. If characters don't have flaws how can you relate?

I feel like everyone in this stage of  "mid-life" should read this book. It was excellent!

HEA? (1)<<<click here if you want to know.

Without speaking, he held up my sweater and I slid my arms through the sleeves.  Then he put on his own jacket.  I bent down and took a few deep breaths.  I still felt unsteady but the air was helping.  He watched and asked if he could get me anything.  I stood up and said no.
“I feel better.”
“Good.  I shouldn’t have bought you that last drink.”
“No, I’m fine really.  This fresh air is exactly what I needed.  Thanks.”
He leaned in closer to me and looked into my eyes for too long.  As he opened his mouth to speak, I saw a Tic Tac tucked into his cheek.
“Did you mean what you said before?”
I wasn’t sure what he was talking about.  “Of course I did.”
He was about to say something when a couple came stumbling out the door laughing loudly.  They gave us a passing glance and staggered off into the distance.
“Because I feel the same way.  I had a huge crush on you when I was in your class.”
I thought my heart would leap out of my chest.  He moved closer.  Those eyes.  From this distance, I could see little flecks of gold in the green.
“Dave, I think you misunderstood.  I’m flattered, really, it’s very sweet.”  I paused, searching for something else to say.
“No it’s not sweet, my feelings for you are not sweet.  They’re wrong and I know it.  What I want to do right now is very wrong.”  He stared at me for a long time without speaking.  I couldn’t speak either.
Something inside me shifted.  Rick hadn’t looked at me that way in years.  My body started to tingle.  His eyes burned through me.  My heart was pounding so fast I felt faint.  He wanted to kiss me but he was holding back.

Is This What I Want? 

Four difficult months have passed since Beth’s husband Rick discovered her affair with a former student. The couple has worked hard in therapy to salvage their marriage and understand their roles in everything that happened. Things are looking up until Dave reappears, awakening Beth’s fantasies of what could have been had she taken their affair to the next level. Now that she is faced with another opportunity, Beth battles an even more impossible dilemma than the first time she was caught in Dave’s web.

Amidst the trouble in her marriage and pressure to shield her children from the discord, Beth is also called upon to help her two best friends, both with serious problems of their own. The stress sparks temptation to seek comfort in her favorite vices. But she knows she can’t hide if she wants to save what matters most. The question is, what does she want?

My 5 star review
After cutting all contact with Dave, Beth and Rick are working through their problems at home and through therapy. Summer has past and it's time for Beth to start back teaching in the fall. What will happen if she runs into Dave? How will it be handled? What Beth isn't prepared for is to see him so soon and as a student in her class. Familiar feelings return and Beth must make a decision...continue to be honest with Rick and save her marriage or get caught up in Dave again? But that may not be her decision to make. After a tenth anniversary gone wrong Rick may make the decision for her. And what will Beth do? 

Wow this book had me shattered again. Just when you thought things were looking up Beth screws up again. And I'm not just blaming Beth because Rick is at fault too he's just more controlled. I have to admit how bad I felt for Dave, it was like I was almost rooting for him at times, knowing that it wasn't logical or even a possibility really. The age between Beth and Dave bothered me at first because it was a fourteen year gap but I get why it was written with such an age difference. Once again the writing was superb and what I really loved was a chance to get into Rick's head and find out more about their marriage troubles through his eyes.

In so many books you get a few struggles with your HEA wrapped up in a bow (which I do love). This book is real though, it's tears at your heart puts it back together and tears a little more just like life. 

Bravo to Patricia Mann for writing and sharing these books, they opened my eyes.

I think we need a book about Dave...hint hint ;)

HEA? (3)<<<click here if you want to know.


Praise for Is This What I Want?

“The love triangle between Beth, Rick, and Dave finally explodes in this beautifully written, heart-wrenching sequel to Is This All There Is?” - Sandi Lynn, New York Times, USA Today & Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author

"All those who were left wanting more after reading “Is This All there Is?” will be happy to know there is more. Lots more, in the sequel “Is This What I Want?” In this honest and thoughtful exploration of a marriage coming undone, author Patricia Mann offers no easy solutions. Instead she takes us into the heart of what love and family is all about and reminds us there is no one-size fits all. A thoroughly satisfying read." - Eileen Goudge, New York Times Bestselling Author

Borrow free with Kindle Unlimited 

Author Bio:
Patricia Mann is a university professor. She lives in California with her husband, their two kids, and two sweet, silly dogs. Patricia blogs about happiness, marriage, sex, parenting, and a variety of other subjects regularly at

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