Thursday, July 18, 2013

Dirty Little Secret by Jennifer Echols

Dirty Little Secret by Jennifer Echols
Release Date: July 16, 2013
Publisher: MTV Books

Bailey wasn’t always a wild child and the black sheep of her family. She used to play fiddle and tour the music circuit with her sister, Julie, who sang and played guitar. That ended when country music execs swooped in and signed Julie to a solo deal. Never mind that Julie and Bailey were a duet, or that Bailey was their songwriter. The music scouts wanted only Julie, and their parents were content to sit by and let her fulfill her dreams while Bailey’s were hushed away.  Bailey has tried to numb the pain and disappointment over what could have been. And as Julie’s debut album is set to hit the charts, her parents get fed up with Bailey’s antics and ship her off to granddad’s house in Nashville. Playing fiddle in washed-up tribute groups at the mall, Bailey meets Sam, a handsome and oh-so-persuasive guitarist with his own band. He knows Bailey’s fiddle playing is just the thing his band needs to break into the industry. But this life has broken Bailey’s heart once before. She isn’t sure she’s ready to let Sam take her there again… -

You all know how big a fan I am of Jennifer Echols and her books.  I love each and every one of them so much.  She just knows how to write characters, make them real, and make me care about them.  And Bailey was no exception.

I loved Bailey from page one.  She's spunky, sarcastic, and talented.  I hated to see how her family has treated her, and I felt so bad for her that she's basically a, well, dirty little secret that they don't want getting out and known.  It hurts to think of someone being swept under the carpet like that, especially when it's your own family doing the sweeping.

I also really liked Sam.  I loved the whole dynamic between her, Sam, and his friends, the band members.  She finds a new family there, and it is gratifying.  I'm from Nashville and have lived here all my life, so it was kind of neat for me to read a book set in Nashville, and most particularly with the country music industry as the setting.  Jennifer Echols did a very good job portraying the life of musicians, singers and songwriters trying to break into the industry.  It was rich in detail and very truly depicted.

The romance wasn't as slow of a progression as I'm used to in her books, but that was okay for a change.  I was only slightly disappointed in the fact that the romance wasn't quite as steamy and sexy as in her prior books.  Also, the story wasn't as emotionally charged as prior books have been either, and although I did miss that, it was also nice to read a story by her that took a break from that as well.

Echols' writing is just as fantastic as always, and I was left feeling satisfied when it was over.  Another great book by a great author.


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