This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Anna Katmore will be awarding her entire GROVER BEACH PLAYERS series as ebooks, or alternatively any of her own novels in ebook format the winner likes, to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.
The embarrassment of being the only “un-kissed” girl in senior high is something Sandy Cardington refuses to accept. The first kiss project is her foolproof plan to finally get rid of the status at her birthday party while her parents are out of town.
With several kissable boys on her guest list, this should be a walk in the park. But she didn’t reckon on her older brother returning from college days before her 17th birthday, putting a spoke in her plans. To make matters even more complicated, he has a friend in tow, and the cute hockey player stirs unexpected butterflies in her stomach every time their paths cross.
While Sandy moves heaven and earth to make her party and project come true, she doesn’t know that Thane Griffyn is making his own plans to teach her the real meaning of a first kiss.
Read an Excerpt
“Since when are you in charge of dressing rules in this house?” I fling back at my brother, stemming my hands to my hips.
“Since Mom asked me to come home and keep an eye on you.” His voice takes on a much sharper edge. “Now change into one of your decent dresses or the party’s off.”
My eyes find Thane’s, and I know I’ve lost this battle because his stunned glare on me scratches on cold rage. “Sorry, Sandra,” he growls as he screws the cap back on the water bottle, “but this time your brother’s right.” Totally startling me, he skirts the counter, grabs my hand—none too gently this time—and drags me out of the room.
“Where are you taking me?” I protest when there’s no chance to withstand his pull.
“Upstairs to find you more suitable clothes for tonight. You want to get kissed, not laid.”
Why the hell is he so angry? He’s the last one to get a say in my life. And still, here I am, being hauled into my room by him and wincing as he slams my door shut, cutting us off from the rest of the house. I spin around in front of my bed and cross my arms rebelliously over my chest.
“And now what?” I spit.
“Now you take those boots off.”
A cynical laugh escapes me. “My boots are none of your business.”
As Thane takes one stride closer, the air suddenly cools with his intense scowl. Two feet away from me, he folds his arms, mirroring my stance, and arches one eyebrow. “Either you take them off, or I will. You have one second.”
This book is one of the best books I have read in a long time. And yes, it’s a Young Adult. Sue me. I just loved how Ms. Katmore has a way with her characters and how they actually interact with each other, not to mention the words that they say to each other. Sure, I’ve read some YA that I loved and the stories were fresh and realistic but 17 Butterflies goes one step further and lets the reader feel what the characters are saying and doing.
Thane could have been a one-dimensional brother’s older brother but he wasn’t. He actually befriended Sandy and understood the “why” she wanted to do the first kiss project but also gave her some things to think about that first kiss and why it is so important not just to her but to the boy that gives her that first kiss. *swoon* Yes, Thane is definitely swoon-worthy and more. He never intimidated her or made her feel stupid. Maybe some mixed signals at times but that is totally normal.
Sandy is just a girl that wants to be kissed. Does she want to lose her v-card? Nope, just a kiss. Totally normal. I remember my first kiss. It was magical then but not so much now. But’s that life and I get that. Sandy just didn’t want to be left behind. And get this, her friends don’t make fun of her. Perfectly normal for them. They understand and want to help her. Of course, Sandy has the typical overbearing brother that wants to put a damper on the project not to mention the party at the house. Ugh. I’m glad that I’m the oldest sibling. Cam could have been another one-dimensional character but again, Ms. Katamore makes him real and in the end understanding.
Overall, I wasn’t surprised by the ending and the outcome was expected. However, the getting there part is awesome. Great characters that are real, dialogue that made sense and appropriate and just an awesome book that I couldn’t put down. Now on to Sandy’s best friend’s story. Adrian…what are you hiding? Things to ponder.
About the Author:
I’ve been a storyteller all my life, building bridges into different worlds. Already in kindergarten, I’ve seen the most fantastical things and wanted to share them with everyone. My teacher called me a liar back then. Today, I call it the first real flash of my spiritual gift and the cornerstone of my writing career.
When I got older, I’ve had many visions of a perfect career, while writing has always been more of a hobby and kind of a therapy for me when the longing for more magic in this world once again caught up with me in a crushing way. When my first book was finished, I couldn’t even imagine sharing one of my stories with others, ever. In fact, I only got used to the idea while I wrote my second book and learned in a very miraculous way where the many stories in this world really come from.
It’s funny how, at that point, everyone told me I can’t possibly make a living with writing. They even warned me not to quit my job. But after my debut novella PLAY WITH ME came out and sales skyrocketed within the first week, I knew I could do anything I wanted if only I never stopped dreaming.
That’s also part of what I teach my students in writing and spiritual workshops today. Always dream big! If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough.
Some personal stuff:
“I’m writing stories because I can’t breathe without.”
Disney is my attitude to life, and if I could I’d save the world from itself. My Patronus is a wolf, my wand the broken twig of an apple tree, 13 ¾ inches with a unicorn hair core. I can’t deny that on some days, I prefer my book characters over real people, but there’s not a single day going by where I wouldn’t try to find magic in reality. And when I’m alone, I love to listen to the many stories of the wind in a mystic mid-summer night.
So you see, I’m lucky enough to live in an enchanting world of my own. It’s peaceful there and full of magical things, fairies and wonders. You’re welcome to follow me there – if you’re ready to open up your mind and leave everything you learned about reality behind. But beware, if you dare to step through this door, you may never want to leave again…
Buy link for Amazon and Kindle Unlimited: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09BD3XDZQ