From NYT & USA Today bestselling author comes a new Bleeding Stars stand-alone novel…
She is his strength and he is her weakness. And this time, he won’t let her go.
Edie Evans is gorgeous.
She’s also the definition of off-limits.
But that didn’t stop me from sneaking into her room to comfort her at night.
But guys like me? We destroy everything, so it should have been no surprise when I destroyed us, too.
The night I sent her running, I thought I’d never see her again.
Until I saw her standing like a vision in the crowd.
Austin Stone is dangerous.
He broke my heart and I refused to give him the chance to do it again.
It’s been years since I’ve seen him, and now I can’t do anything but stare at the gorgeous, tattooed man playing onstage. I should run. I know I should. But like a fool, I run straight back to him.
Our desire is overpowering.
Our need unrelenting.
She is my hope.
He is my weakness.
We should have known a passion this intense would burn us right into the ground.
Austin Stone’s story has been one of my most highly anticipated books, since the moment I read about him in A Stone in the Sea. That poor, broken boy in the hoodie pulled on my heartstrings. His pain was incredibly a siren’s call, leading me to a story that would surely destroy me. I got that, and more, in Wait.
Austin and Edie each had pasts that made my soul ache for them. Things that had happened to them when they were so young, it was no wonder they lived the way they did. Each finding a way to protect themselves from any sort of real connection. Both knowing the only way they’d ever be whole was in the arms of the other. Their story was heartbreaking, destroying, healing.
The characters in this book were so well developed; it felt as they’d been plucked from their lives and forced into the pages of a book. From their speech patterns to the way they held themselves each character was unique, there was no cut and paste formula going on in this book. Told in dual perspective, Wait is from the POVs of Austin and Edie, and each of their chapters had an individual voice. There was something rough around the edges about the way Austin’s chapters were written, while Edie’s were sweet, reserved, wholly her. It was a masterful bit of characterization.
Wait wasn’t as high on the present action as the previous books in this series have been. It more than made up for it in the way the past was presented, and how those moments were weaved into their impact on the current state of the relationships between Austin, Edie, and their friends and family. The way AL Jackson made the mistakes, the pain, and the damage of the past color every second of Austin and Edie’s present was powerful.
The very best part of this book, however, was the growth arc the characters completed. I was absolutely blown away with how much Austin and Edie learned from each other. From the mistakes, they’d made in the past. From the damage of holding on to their pain. The final chapter of this book was incredibly powerful. It was a soul-shaking moment. It was perfection.
AL Jackson never disappoints. Never. Especially not with this book. Her writing draws me in in a way I can’t properly explain. There’s a pull to the characters, a connection to them, that not many authors can capture. When she writes it’s more than a story, she uses her words to capture the very essence of what it feels to be in someone else’s soul. There’s nothing quite like it.
“Shit,” I hissed, bracing myself against the spray of the icy shards pelting from the shower head.
I sucked in a breath, released it between clenched teeth, and forced myself fully under it.
Head dropped and chest heaving as rivers of ice-cold water slicked down my shoulders and back.
But it did nothing to lessen the need. Gave me no sanity or pacification.
Because all I could think about was the girl on the other side of the door.
In my bed.
Wearing just her panties and my shirt.
An angel I wanted to dirty.
I always had.
Love was messy like that.
All of my restraint scattered. I gripped my cock. Squeezed the base. My mouth dropped open at the pressure of my hand against my rigid length.
A fool thinking it might be enough.
God, I was a bastard, but there was nothing I could do before I was giving in, leaning forward and bracketing my forearm above my head to hold my weight.
Water pounded down on my head and back while I pounded my fist against my dick.
Trying to keep silent when all I wanted was to moan, teeth digging into my bottom lip as I pictured the girl spread out for me.
My breaths were coming short.
Panted and hard.
I gave into imagining the sounds she would make when I finally got to bury myself in her body.
A soft, soft gasp.
I slowed, trying to convince myself that throaty sound was all in my mind.
Just another part of this fantasy.
Until I heard the small thump against the wall.
I mashed my eyes closed, like it might hide me.
Conceal the depravity of my actions after I’d just been comforting her hours before.
Heart thrashing, I turned and moved far enough to peek out the small section where the fabric shower curtain hadn’t been drawn fully closed.
It was just a little sliver that left me exposed.
But it was enough. When I peered out, I was looking right at my girl pressed up against the wall.
She stared right back at me.
And I wanted to be horrified, my mind scrambling to conjure every weak apology I could summon. Ready to fucking grovel to keep her from turning and running once again.
Because that’s exactly what I expected her to do.
But her expression…her expression clutched me in the center of the chest and sent what little brain function I had left stampeding south.
Red, lush lips were parted, her hand pressed to her hollow of her throat, pupils dilated so big that her hooded, cerulean eyes appeared black. Needy breaths were coming at me from that sweet mouth like a goddamned freight train.
Desire swelled in the confines of the too-tight room.
She pressed deeper into the wall as if it might support her weakened knees. Head rocked back. Thighs squeezing together.
My hand shot to the shower wall to steady myself. “Warning you, Edie, you need to get out of here. Right now.”
A.L. Jackson is the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. She writes emotional, sexy, heart-filled stories about boys who usually like to be a little bit bad.
Her bestselling series include THE REGRET SERIES, CLOSER TO YOU, as well as the newest BLEEDING STARS novels. Watch for the next installments, WAIT and STAY, coming in 2016.
If she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the pool with her family, sipping cocktails with her friends, or of course with her nose buried in a book.
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Connect with A.L. Jackson online:www.aljacksonauthor.com