Can’t Walk Away (Nashville Dreams #1) by Sandy James-Review, Excerpt & Giveaway

CAN’T WALK AWAY (Nashville Dreams #) by Sandy James-Review, Excerpt & Giveaway

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Nashville Dreams #1
by Sandy James
Genre: adult, contemporary, romance
Release Date: October 10, 2017

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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date October 10, 2017

In Nashville the stars shine a little brighter, songs sound a little sweeter, and love lasts a lifetime.

Young, rich, and better looking than a man has a right to be, successful songwriter Brad “Hitman” Maxwell was once Nashville’s biggest celebrity. Then a heartbreaking loss and a shocking betrayal caused his light to go out. Now, instead of pouring his soul into song, he pours beers at Words & Music. His bar is the perfect escape–a place to forget his past–until the night she takes the stage…

Savannah Wolf used to dream of becoming Nashville’s hottest star. Now, as a young single mom, she dreams of a steady income and being home to tuck her daughter into bed. So when Brad Maxwell offers her the gig of a lifetime–playing as the headliner at Words & Music–Savannah discovers the best of both worlds. And she refuses to ruin this opportunity by falling for her sexy boss. Except that Brad suddenly starts writing music again… music inspired by her


REVIEW: CAN’T WALK AWAY is the first installment in Sandy James’ contemporary, adult NASHVILLE DREAMS romance series focusing on three friends who own and operate Words and Music-a bar in Nashville, Tennessee: Brad Maxwell, Ethan Walker and Russell Green. This is songwriter Brad ‘Hitman’ Maxwell, and waitress/singer Savannah Wolf’s story line.

Told from dual third person perspectives (Brad and Savannah) CAN’T WALK AWAY focuses on the building relationship between Brad Maxwell and Savannah Wolf. Savannah is a twenty-six year old single mother; a singer whose earlier musical career was jettisoned by her former manager, boyfriend, the father of her five year old daughter Caroline, and the man who has destroyed our heroine’s trust with other men Michael Hart. Brad Maxwell, is a struggling song writer, a once popular and chart topping writer who lost his muse when the woman he once loved and lost betrayed his trust and the bonds of their marriage. Hearing Savannah Wolf sing was like a beacon to Brad Maxwell- the call of a long, lost urge to pick up a pen and begin writing anew. What ensues is the quick building love between Brad and Savannah, and the potential fall out when issues of trust make for too many hurdles between our story line couple.

Brad Maxwell’s attraction to Savannah is one of insta-lust/love. He is determined to make Savannah a star but our heroine wants only to earn enough money to buy a house and pay the bills. As Savannah’s star begins to rise, her mounting fame and the paparazzi begin to build walls between our leading couple.

The relationship between Savannah and Brad begins as a business arrangement. Brad makes Savannah the headliner at Words and Music but our heroine struggles with the notoriety as her popularity begins to soar. Brad and Savannah both have issues of trust, and in this, the little secrets and bumps in the road are blown out of proportion throughout the story; they both continue to compare one another to their previous relationship disasters. I struggled with their exaggerated reactions to the ‘small things’, as well as a perceived lack of chemistry between our story line couple. The $ex scenes are intimate without the use of over the top, sexually graphic language and text.

We are introduced to Brad’s friends and business partners- musician Ethan Walker, and Russell Green; Savannah’s over-protective parents Paul and Mary Wolf, and Savannah’s daughter Caroline, as well as Words and Music stage manager Randy. The requisite evil comes in the guise of Savannah’s ex-manager and boyfriend Michael Hart. I am looking forward to Ethan and Russell’s story line.

CAN’T WALK AWAY is a story of second chances, of sorts, for two people who loved and lost, and suffered the humiliation of betrayal in return. The premise is engaging and enjoyable; the romance is seductive; the characters struggled with issues of trust. CAN’T WALK AWAY is a charming and pleasant story line.

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

Can't Walk Away Teaser



By the fifth take, Brad was losing his patience.
Had he been wrong in thinking Savannah was something special, something new? He sure as hell didn’t think so.
Then why couldn’t he get her to sing with the passion she’d shown back at Words & Music?
Maybe it was the song. “That Smile” was his first attempt at writing in a long time. Perhaps it wasn’t up to snuff?
No. When Brad had heard Savannah sing it earlier, he’d known he’d written a strong song with a good melody and a catchy beat.
Something was clearly blocking her talent.
“I’m sorry, Brad.” She dropped the headphones from her ears to let them rest around her neck. Then, head bowed, she started shuffling through the sheet music.
He’d never seen her look defeated before, and he didn’t like it. This wasn’t the Savannah who’d been his muse. This wasn’t the woman who brought back his music.
This was…a disaster.
But why?
He watched her closely, trying to find some telltale clue as to what was going on today that had robbed Savannah of the passion and talent he’d counted on. Her hair was braided, the braid an eclectic mixture of blond and blue. A blush tinted her cheeks, and he could hear her nervousness through the quaver in her voice, especially in the last notes of her fifth recording.
Something was definitely wrong, and he was going to have to find a way to fix it. But he couldn’t do that from another room. Even though he could see her, something told him she needed something more personal. Unsure of whether being closer to her would make a difference, he figured it was worth a shot.
Brad started a new recording so he could capture the song if he was able to help her, pushed himself away from the console, and headed to the recording booth with his remote control in his pocket. He pulled the door open and stepped inside.
Savannah glanced up from the music, offering him a wan smile that made his frustration evaporate. She knew something was wrong, too. Maybe if they put their heads together, they could get back the magic.
After pulling a stool beside hers, he sat. Then he gently took off her headphones, plucked the pages from her hands, and placed them back on the music stand. She let her eyes meet his, and he could see her concern.
“We’re going do things a little differently this time,” Brad said, keeping his voice low.
“We are?”
He nodded and scooted closer. Then he wrapped his hand around one of hers. “You’re not going to think about recording.”
“I’m not?”
“Nope. This time you’re just going to sing to me. That’s all.”
Her whole body relaxed, and Brad had to fight the desire to smile.
“Sing to me, Savannah. Just to me. Okay?”
She nodded, and before she could get a chance to think about what he was doing, he pulled a remote from his pocket and began the music playback so that it echoed through the room.
The notes of the intro flowed around them, and he kept her grounded by not allowing her to glance away. When she opened her mouth to sing, he gave her hand a reassuring squeeze and offered her an encouraging smile.
And sing she did. Each delightful note came from deep inside her, and he found himself caught in some kind of spell, the same type she’d woven around him back at Words & Music. He hung on each rise and fall of that delicious voice until the last note echoed through the booth.
The song might have ended, but not the magic. Brad found himself leaning closer, his eyes fixed on her soft, pink mouth. Desire ripped through him as she mimicked his action, drawing ever so slowly closer until he could feel the sweet heat of her breath against his face.
With a groan of surrender, he captured her mouth with his own, giving her no warning as his tongue swept deep inside.
Savannah nearly knocked over her stool when she rose to thread her arms around his neck. She was such a little bit of a thing that he could stay seated and draw her between his outstretched legs without interrupting the kiss. As she moved closer, Brad wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her hard against him.
The kiss turned ravenous, and he realized that he was done fighting this attraction.



About The Author Black and Red

Sandy James lives in a quiet suburb of Indianapolis and is a high school psychology
teacher. She owns a small stable of harness racehorses and enjoys spending time at
Hoosier Park racetrack. She has been an Amazon #1 Bestseller multiple times and has
won numerous awards including two HOLT Medallions.

Website / Goodreads / Twitter / Facebook

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