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Hard To Hold On To (#HardInk 2.5) by Laura Kaye ~ Character Interview #Review #Giveaway


For today's tour stop, I'm so happy to present to you a character interview with Easy and my review of Hard To Hold On To! ~Grace

Let's begin...

G:  Hi Easy, I’m so excited for your visit today!

E:  Hey, Grace. *rubs hand over head* Thanks for having me.

G:  Can you tell us a little about yourself? Where did your nickname came from?

E:  Um, I’m not sure if there’s a lot to tell. I used to be in the Army. Spent a lot of years in Afghanistan with some very good men. That’s where I got my nickname. One of my teammates, Shane McCallan, combined the E and the C from my real name, Edward Cantrell, to come up with Easy. Fits me better, I think. Anyway, this past year, I’ve been working for my family’s business up in Philadelphia, and a few weeks ago, I caught up with some of my old teammates to figure out the bullshit related to why we were forced out of the Army. Oh. *smiles, just a little* And I met an awesome girl named Jenna. *smiles a little more* That was the best of it all.

G:  Being in the military has changed you so much. Do you have any regrets? If you could talk to your younger self, what would you tell him?

E:  Regrets? Hell, yes. Seven good men lost their lives on a dirt road in Afghanistan. Seven men who were as much like family as my flesh and blood. That I couldn’t save them, especially my best friend, Marcus Rimes, will always be a regret I carry inside. But carrying it is as much a privilege as it is a burden, because they’re not here anymore. And I will remember them every damn day I might have left. Being in the military changes everyone. It’s a given. It’s a culture as much as it is a job. So I wouldn’t change going on. It was one of the best things I ever did. Certainly, the place where I felt like I fit in the best. I would just tell my younger self that you have to hold on to and appreciate the things you care about as hard as you can, because they don’t always last, no matter how sure you are that they will.

G:  You met Jenna under somewhat unusual circumstances.  She’s pretty special to you. What would you tell her if she were sitting here with us right now?

E: *rubs hand over lips, shaping into a small smile* Yeah, it was a little unusual. But I also think it happened at exactly the right time. Wouldn’t change it for the world. I would tell her that I got her back. That I will protect her with everything that I have. And that she is very special to me. I’d also say thank you, because since I met her she’s had my back, too.

G:  Describe your perfect date night.

E:  Guys do not sit around thinking about perfect date nights. But as long as it was me and Jen together, it would be about as good as it could get.

G:  A few quickie questions...
Who inspires you the most?

E:  This is a hard one because I can’t say I’ve felt inspired in a long time. But meeting Jenna and reuniting with the guys have definitely made me want to be a better man, so I could say them.

G:  Favorite hobby?

E:  I’m a big fan of Eddie Murphy movies.

G:  You got any ink you can tell us about?

E:  I have a cross and chain that hangs around my neck and on my chest and the Special Forces knife and arrows on my arm. And I have three newer pieces on my ribs – a quote, my fallen teammates’ initials, and a little something from Jenna to help me remember to hold on no matter what.

G:  Thank you so much, Easy, for stopping by Sweet Spot Book Blog! It was such a pleasure to chat with you!

E:  Welcome.

Feel free to ask Easy or his author lady anything!


Did you know Laura is donating all of her proceeds of the sales from the first two weeks to a national non-profit that helps wounded veterans?

About Hard to Hold On To:
Edward "Easy" Cantrell knows better than most the pain of not being able to save those he loves—which is why he is not going to let Jenna Dean out of his sight.  He may have just met her, but Jenna's the first person to make him feel alive since that devastating day in the desert more than a year ago.

Jenna has never met anyone like Easy. She can't describe how he makes her feel--and not just because he saved her life. No, the stirrings inside her reach far beyond gratitude.

As the pair are thrust together while chaos reigns around them, they both know one thing: the things in life most worth having are the hardest to hold on to.


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Five Stars

I love reading novellas. I’ve read my fair share of novellas that leave you so unsatisfied and wondering what the whole point was, a tease perhaps? Not with this one! First, if you’ve been following along with the Hard Ink series, then reading Hard To Hold On To is a no-brainer! Second, Edward “Easy” Cantrell is counting on you to read what he’s all about. He’s finally speaking up and letting everything that he’s going through all flow out…it’s raw, it’s painful, and it all unfolds into a story with a very powerful message.

The timelines for the books of this series so far have run close together. This story begins immediately after where book 2 ended. I LOVE how Laura Kaye wrote the chemistry between Jenna and Easy. Jenna had just gone through something so traumatic. The way they’re written, you can feel that her pain is his pain at this moment in time. Easy totally gets her, and in return feisty and sweet Jenna is there for him when he needs her the most.

I loved that the other characters play a huge role in this story, too. What the others do just brought tears to my eyes! On the other end of the spectrum, Jeremy’s shirts continue to inject a bit of humor! I can’t wait to see what shirt he wears next. The romance and steam? This is Laura Kaye we’re talking about. She knows how to describe the emotions of when a man makes your belly flip-flop. Jenna is so freakin’ lucky! Remember, this novella is only the beginning for these two. I have a feeling we’ll see more of them in the next books.

Finally, Ms. Kaye covers a very serious and real issue in this story, one that veterans and those currently serving in the military deal with every day. I can tell that Easy was a very challenging character for her to write. I truly appreciate how genuine and realistic she wrote him. If anything, read this to be enlightened, to be touched, and to know that there will always be someone, somewhere willing to listen. Hard To Hold On To is absolutely worth reading!

*ARC received from publisher. This is my honest review.


Other Books in the Hard Ink Series:
Hard to Come By (11/25/14)
Hard to Be Good (3/10/15)
Untitled (7/28/15)

Praise for the Hard Ink Series:

For Hard As You Can:
"TOP PICK! There is a sinister and desperate edge to this tale that will keep readers glued to their seats. Kaye has dark romantic suspense nailed!" ~ RT Book Reviews Magazine

"Hard As You Can is another five star read. The characters Ms. Kaye has created are wonderfully broken and the drama is gritty, but the burgeoning romance and the tight-knitted relationship of the team leaves you with a sense of redemption. A must read series!" ~San Francisco Book Review

For Hard As It Gets:
"Edgy, sexy and full of suspense!  A great read from a great new author!" ~ #1 NYT Bestselling Author J.R. Ward

"Sizzling romance... The intriguing tattoo parlor and military background will appeal to fans of Suzanne Brockmann and Lindsay McKenna." ~Publishers Weekly Review

"Kaye's depiction of sexual tension and her sex scenes are masterful and this will appeal to fans of Maya Banks' KGI and Julia Ann Walker's Black Knight's series." ~Booklist

About Laura Kaye:
Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of nearly twenty books in contemporary and paranormal romance. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.



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4 comments:

  1. Love the interview with Easy and I love his new tattoos.

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    1. Right?! I just HAD to ask him about his ink! ;)

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  2. I am so behind this series! Love the interview, it whet my appetite. I need to catch up fast!!

    P.S. thanks for stopping by the blog yesterday and you are more than welcome to guest post! Just shoot me an email and we'll schedule it and it can be as sporadic as you want it to be.

    Happy weekend!

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    1. I had so much fun interviewing Easy! Glad to help out if I can. I'll keep in contact. Happy weekend!

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