MIDSEASON 1: AFTER THE STORM
Welcome to Storm, Texas, where passion runs hot, desire runs deep, and secrets have the power to destroy…
Nestled among rolling hills and painted with vibrant wildflowers, the bucolic town of Storm, Texas, seems like nothing short of perfection.
But there are secrets beneath the facade. Dark secrets. Powerful secrets. The kind that can destroy lives and tear families apart. The kind that can cut through a town like a tempest, leaving jealousy and destruction in its wake, along with shattered hopes and broken dreams. All it takes is one little thing to shatter that polish.
Reading like an on-going drama in the tradition of classic day and night-time soap operas like Dallas, Dynasty, and All My Children, Rising Storm is full of scandal, deceit, romance, passion, and secrets.
With 1001 Dark Nights as the “producer,” Julie Kenner and Dee Davis use a television model with each week building on the last to create a storyline that fulfills the promise of a drama-filled soap opera. Joining Kenner and Davis in the “writer’s room” for the Midseason Episodes of this serial opera are bestselling authors Lexi Blake and Larissa Ione who have brought their vision of Storm to life.
So get ready. The storm is coming.
– SYNOPSIS –
Secrets, Sex and Scandals …
Welcome to Storm, Texas, where passion runs hot, desire runs deep, and secrets have the power to destroy… Get ready. The storm is coming.
In the wake of Dakota’s revelations, the whole town is reeling. Ginny Moreno has lost everything. Logan Murphy is devastated by her lies. Brittany Rush sees her family in a horrifying new light. And nothing will ever be the same…
– EXCERPT –
“I didn’t know I was pregnant until I woke up from the accident.” Ginny’s voice was an impassioned whisper. “I found out two things that changed my life in that moment. I found out that my best friend was gone and that I was pregnant. And I prayed so hard that I hadn’t lost all of Jacob forever.”
Forever. That’s what she was looking at. She was looking at an entire lifetime of being a mother without a son. She loved her daughters dearly, but she would mourn Jacob forever. And this selfish girl was equating her pain as though they were the same. As though one night of spreading her legs gave her the right to mourn him.
“I think you woke up and realized you had two options. Take care of that baby alone or worm your way into Jacob’s family and his money.”
“I never cared about the money.”
Celeste wasn’t going to listen to that tripe. “Of course you did. Not enough to keep your legs closed. You say you loved Jacob but how long did you wait before you hopped into bed with that Murphy boy? Did you even break it off with my brother-in-law? How many men do you need on your string?”
“I’ve never slept with Logan, but I will admit that I’m in love with him. I love him in a way I never loved Jacob. Jacob was my best friend, but I know now that he wasn’t my soul mate. I pray with everything I am that this is his child, that we receive a miracle because I don’t want him to be lost forever, but I won’t hide what I feel for Logan and I won’t pretend it’s nasty. Not even to placate you, Celeste. I want to make things right between us and that means apologizing to you. Celeste, I’m so sorry I hurt you. I never meant to. I should have been braver. I should have been stronger, but I woke up and the world had crashed around me and I wanted the love you could give me. That all of you could give me. I’m sorry that it brought you so much pain.”
Something about the way she was standing there enraged Celeste. How could she stand there looking so innocent? How could she say exactly the right things to garner empathy? Celeste didn’t want to empathize. She wanted to fight and tear up things and destroy the world around her because it seemed so damn intent on destroying her. She wanted to burn it all down.
She didn’t feel her hand snap back, didn’t quite understand what she was doing. The world seemed tinged in red at the corners as though rage now filtered her vision. And it slowed everything down. In horror she realized she was going to strike Ginny Moreno. Her hand was going to bring justice her words never could.
And then it slapped against flesh. A strong hand circled her wrist and Travis stared down at her like he had no idea who she was.
– REVIEW –
Ginny Moreno is the hot topic in the small town of Storm, Texas and with good reason. Young Ginny is pregnant, and the father of her child might be that married dirt bag, Senator Sebastian Rush. Or, the father of Ginny’s “Little Bit” could be her recently deceased best friend, Jacob Salt. Adding to the angst, Ginny’s finally found true love with the suffering hunk, Logan Murphy. (He’s late to the party, dang it, and sadly, not in the running for Baby Daddy.)
Did I mentioned that Senator Rush is the father of Ginny’s best friend, Brittany?
Now Ginny is a good and decent girl who has made some bad choices — it’s not fair to label her the town ho. That’s reserved for Dakota Alvarez, who also happens to have slept with Senator Sebastian Rush. Obviously Senator Rush has a predilection for The Young and The Fresh.
(A little back story: Dakota decided to do grieving Jacob’s parents a favor. Apparently Ginny had given hope to the Salts that her Little Bit is also Jacob’s Little Bit. At a Founder’s Day event meant to showcase the re-election campaign of Senator Rush, Dakota made her move, revealing publicly that Jacob Salt was incapable of fathering a child! Yes, the cunning Dakota stole poor Jacob’s medical records that reveal him to have been sterile — or was it impotent? We eagerly anticipate a Maury Povich moment in a future episode.)
So why is Dakota catching condemnation for her faux-magnanimous actions? Why aren’t people lauding her behavior? Why isn’t Ginny being run out of town? Will disgusting Senator Rush be re-elected? And wait — was Jacob really sterile?
If all of this sounds like soap opera, that’s exactly what it’s supposed to be — sleazy, cheesy, scandalous soap opera.
Author Lexi Blake’s After the Storm novella is first in the Mid-Season offering of the Rising Storm Series. Replete with a cast of misunderstood/manipulative characters that harken back to the glory days of Dallas/Dynasty, Blake serves up an enjoyable escape into the continuing saga of Storm, Texas.
Written in an episodic fashion, After the Storm, in keeping with all of the Rising Storm novellas, contains many minor plots. Although very intertwined, it didn’t take long for this reader to sort out the relationships and story lines. Author Blake hits the perfect tone with her characters — a bit of substance, a bit of shallowness, a bit of sleaze — it’s all there.
While the drama in Storm unwinds throughout the Series, After the Storm does give the reader sufficient resolution to the featured plot. One could walk away from this novella satisfied, but the pull to Storm, Texas is strong — you may want to dig out the big shoulder pads and put some air in your hair.
*ARC received in exchange for an honest review.*
Experience Rising Storm Here…
Rising Storm Midseason Episode 1 (March 29):
Lexi Blake’s After the Storm
Rising Storm Midseason Episode 2 (April 5):
Larissa Ione’s Distant Thunder
– ABOUT THE AUTHOR –
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband and three kids. She began writing at a young age concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance that she found success. Lexi believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome or foursome may seem.
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