Monday, February 2, 2015

Blog Tour: Guest Post, Review and Giveaway for Rise by Karina Bliss

I'm super excited to share my review and the giveaway Karina Bliss is doing! I loved the book!

Rise (Rock Solid, #1)
Adult Contemporary Rock star Romance 
Release: January 28, 2015 
Amazon |  Kindle  |  Kobo  |  Nook  | iBooks

 “You have the ability to make controversial characters sympathetic. Maybe I just want to be understood.” 
Acclaimed literary biographer Elizabeth Winston writes about long-dead heroes. So bad boy rock icon Zander Freedman couldn’t possibly tempt her to write his memoir. Except the man is a mass of fascinating contradictions - manipulative, honest, gifted, charismatic, morally ambiguous. 
In short, everything she sought in a biography subject. When in her life will she get another chance to work with a living legend? But saying yes to one temptation soon leads to another. 
Suddenly she’s having heated fantasies about her subject, fantasies this blue-eyed-devil is only too willing to stoke. She’d thought self-control was in her DNA, after all she grew up a minister’s daughter. She thought wrong.     

Outside your comfort zone is the only place worth living... 
Zander Freedman has been an outlier - many would say an outcast – for most of his life. But there’s no disaster he can’t overcome, from the break-up of his band to the fall-out on his reputation. His Resurrection Tour is shaping up to be his greatest triumph - if his golden voice holds out. Contracting a respected biographer is simply about creating more buzz; Elizabeth's integrity the key to consolidating his legacy as one of rock’s greats. 
All the damn woman has to do is write down what he tells her. Not make him think. 
Or encourage the good guy struggling to get out. And certainly not to fall in love for the first time in his life. 
Turns out he is scared of something - being known. 

Rise - a redemption story of a rock star going straight(er) through the love of a good(ish) woman. 
Add to your Goodreads list! 

Guest Post

The rock star & the academic: Making opposites attract 
By Karina Bliss 

I love the opposites-attract trope, ‘You say toe-ma-toe, I say toe-mate-o’. (FYI, as a Kiwi, I say it the first way). I couldn’t have written two people more different than my egotistical, rock-star bad boy Zander Freedman and my warm-hearted, church-brat academic Elizabeth Winston.  

With opposites, it’s easy to see what’s keeping your characters apart. But when you’re writing romance, what’s more important is what brings and binds these two together. What do they have in common? Both Zander and Elizabeth are smart, independent, take-charge people who share a similar sense of the ridiculous, and I made sure my plot gave them opportunities to join forces.  

I found this wonderful Oscar Wilde quote, which I adopted as my theme for Rise. “Every saint has a past, and every sinner a future.” As I wrote the book, it reminded me to add dimensions to my story characters. Just because my heroine is a good person doesn’t mean she lacks a wild side, and vice versa for the hero. 

Opposites or not, the hero and heroine need to appreciate each other in a way no one else does. In Zander, Elizabeth sees a caretaker hero, capable of kindness and vulnerability. In Elizabeth, Zander sees a wolf in sheep’s clothing, someone as adventurous as he is.  

In a romance, the challenge for opposites is to incorporate the qualities of the other - the qualities they lack - so two halves become a perfect whole.


★★★★★ stars

Rock star romances are all the rage and I love them.  I also read them often, and now and again, one will stand out.  Rise is one such book.  It's not because it's hot or raunchy, or the fact that it's the hottest new/biggest rock star.  It's because of the characters and who they are.

Elizabeth and Zander are infinitely likable. I was surprised by the fact that I liked Zander.  I think that's because I haven't read the previous book so can't judge him on how he used to be.  I only know him as this guy who is worried about taking care of his responsibilities.  I know meddling isn't always fruitful, but Elizabeth genuinely cared about the people around her, so it didn't come across as invasive and intrusive.  The two had wonderful chemistry. I also enjoyed how old Zander and Elizabeth were.  It made the emotions and story feel solid.  

What I really liked was how religion was included in this book.  Elizabeth is the child of two ministers and so faith plays a big role in her upbringing and who she is.  It was done in a way that was true with keeping in Elizabeth's character, but wasn't too preachy or overbearing for those who have different beliefs.  While reading, I had the fleeing thought this book could be categorized as an hot inspirational adult contemporary rock star romance.  There were moments when things were fade to black/implied and others when love scenes were more explicit.  

I experienced so many emotions as I read and the story was so entertaining, I found it extremely hard to put down. I hurt so much for Zander when I found out what caused him the most pain.  I wanted to reach into the book and give him a giant hug.  All in all, I enjoyed being kept on my toes as I read. It wasn't just Elizabeth and Zander who kept me wondering about what was going to happen next, but also Zander's new band mates and the people in their lives.  I enjoyed getting to know them and look forward to reading more about them in the future.

*Thank you to the author for providing a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for them in any manner.*
Follow the tour here: 

About the Author 
New Zealander Karina Bliss’s debut, Mr Imperfect, won a Romantic Book of the Year award in Australia, the first of eleven books published through Harlequin SuperRomance. Her most recent release, A Prior Engagement, was a Desert Island Keeper at Her next release, Rise, is a single title, self-published contemporary which continues the story of Zander Freedman, who first appeared as a villain in Karina’s bestselling title, What the Librarian Did a book that made DearAuthor’sBest of the Year list in 2010.Two of Karina’s books have also featured in Sizzling Book Chats at SmartBitchesTrashyBooks. 
Find out more at 

Release Giveaway: 
The author is giving away (1) eBook copy of RISE. 
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Is it that opposites attract? If so I'd say yes, in a heartbeat



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