Friday, November 8, 2019

Dirty Letters by Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward Blog Tour

From New York Times bestselling authors Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward comes an unexpected love story that starts long before the lovers meet.

I’d never forgotten him—a man I’d yet to meet.

Griffin Quinn was my childhood pen pal, the British boy who couldn’t have been more different from me. Over the years, through hundreds of letters, we became best friends, sharing our deepest, darkest secrets and forming a connection I never thought could break.

Until one day it did.

Then, out of the blue, a new letter arrived. A scathing one—one with eight years of pent-up anger. I had no choice but to finally come clean as to why I stopped writing.

Griffin forgave me, and somehow we were able to rekindle our childhood connection. Only now we were adults, and that connection had grown to a spark. Our letters quickly went from fun to flirty to downright dirty, revealing our wildest fantasies. So it only made sense that we would take our relationship to the next level and see each other in person.

Only Griff didn’t want to meet. He asked that I trust him and said it was for the best. But I wanted more—more Griff, in the flesh—so I took a big chance and went looking for him. People have done crazier things for love.

But what I found could change everything.

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The small dining room table had a pile of mail. I’d had Dad’s mail forwarded to my house, so mostly it was just catalogs and junk. Once a month, Mrs. Cascio sent me everything that arrived, even though I’d told her it wasn’t necessary. I mindlessly fingered through the pile, not expecting to see anything worth keeping. But I stopped at an envelope addressed to me—well, not me, but Luca Ryan. That was a name I hadn’t heard in a long time. In second grade, my teacher, Mrs. Ryan, started a pen pal writing program with a small town in England. We weren’t allowed to use our real last names for safety reasons, so the entire class used her last name—hence I was Luca Ryan. I checked out the return address for the sender’s name.

G. Quinn

Wow, really? It couldn’t be.

I squinted at the postmark. It was from a PO box in California, not England, but I didn’t know any other Quinn other than Griffin. And the handwriting did look pretty familiar. But it had been close to eight years since we’d exchanged letters. Why would he write now? Curious, I ripped it open and scanned right to the bottom of the letter for the name. Sure enough, it was from Griffin. I started at the beginning.

Dear Luca,

Do you like scotch? I remember you said you didn’t like the taste of beer. But we never did get around to comparing our taste in hard liquor. Why is that, you might ask? Let me remind you—because you stopped answering my letters eight damn years ago. I wanted to let you know, I’m still pissed off about that. My mum used to say I hold grudges. But I prefer to think of it as I remember the facts. And the fact of the matter is, you suck. There, I’ve said it. I’ve been holding that shit in for a long time. Don’t get me wrong—I’m not obsessive or anything. I don’t sit in my house thinking about you all day long. In fact, there have been months that go by when thoughts of you don’t even enter my brain. But then some random thing will pop into my head out of the blue. Like I’ll see some kid in a pram eating black licorice, and I’ll think of you. Side note—I’ve tried it again as an adult, and I still think it tastes like the bottom of my shoe, so perhaps it’s that you just have no taste. You probably don’t even like scotch. Anyway, I’m sure this letter won’t find its way to you. Or if by some miracle it does, you won’t answer. But if you’re reading this, you should know two things.
1. The Macallan 1926 is worth the extra cash. Goes down smooth.
2. You SUCK.

Later, traitor, Griffin

What in the hell?

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I love this author duo; I haven't found a story that I haven't loved from these two. When I saw this story, I knew I wanted to read it even without reading the blurb.

Luca and Griffin became pen pals in the second grade. They learned about each other through hundreds of letters and millions of words. They became best friends that shared everything and formed a connection that would never be broken.

When Luca stopped writing Griff, it was a terrifying event that she couldn't explain. So, after eight years of silence, a letter arrives in the mail. It is filled with anger and hurt. Luca decides that it is time to tell Griff why she stopped writing to him. And boy is it a doozy. Never would I have imagined what had happened to her and how her life changed.

Griffin was from England when the letter-writing began but now he was living in California. He missed the girl he knew so well in the letters and he wanted her back. So, when he finally got a letter from her after eight years, he couldn't believe what he was reading. But when she wants to meet or exchange photos now, he doesn't want to.

What is Griffin hiding from Luca? Will Luca and Griffin finally meet after all these years? What will she think when she learns who he really is? Can he handle the way she has to live her life? And what about the crazy bird-loving doctor in her life?

I fell in love with Luca and Griffin and the idea of writing to a pen pal. This story is filled with pain, anxiety (that is so real you can feel it), hurt, a connection that spanned over the years and miles, and a love to last forever. I highly recommend you read this one, but be prepared for your feelings to be all over the place. You can bet that Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward will have you smiling in the end.

Sometimes you read a book that just resonates with you. Sometimes you read a book that you just cannot put down, and sometimes you find a set characters that complement one another so perfectly that complete harmony is achieved!

Dirty Letters by Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward was an amazing, emotionally charged story of a boy and a girl who grew up together by way of paper and pen. Life happens, as it does for so many, and they lose touch... Until the reconnect.

I will not mention anything of this story, I would be disappointed if it was ruined for me. I will say that Griffin, Luca, Doc, and Hortencia all come together to provide an entertaining story that's filled with steaminess, action, humor, and a true romance. I can't wait to read this again... it was that good!

I also know that I will read anything that's written by this duo!

Avid Reader☆☆☆☆
M/F Friends-to-lovers Romance
Triggers: Click HERE to see Avid Reader’s review on Goodreads for trigger warnings.

Luca has a life that anyone would think was pretty special. She's an amazing writer and has a pet pig. But with her life has come some pretty severe trauma. When her life is filled with anxiety and fear, Luca has Doc to help her through it.

Griffin made all of his dreams come true. But with success, he sometimes feel that he's still all alone in this world. He misses his best friend and wants to know what truly happened. So, one drunken night, he writes a letter to the one person who he has always been able to count on.

Luca and Griffin's story is one of innocent letters and childhood crushes. They knew each other before they truly knew each other. When the past comes back and pushes them both in the same direction, it will be up to them to figure out whether or not there is a future.

Luca wants to be able to be fearless and Griffin doesn't want to live his life without Luca in his life. But with Luca's PTSD and Griffin's career, there may not be a way around the complex issues that follow them.

I really enjoyed this story. Their letters were funny, sexy, and sometimes dirty. But their love was so pure. At times, I did think it would have been a more successful romance if they had concentrated less on Luca's issues and gotten past that. I wanted more of their romance and life together. But this was funny and made me smile on several occasions.

This is a really well written and thought provoking book. Just why would two young friends an ocean apart feel so strongly for each other and be so honest with each other, for it all to end abruptly one day and the connection be severed? I love that older readers will completely get that paralysing thought that there was nothing you can do about it, just get on with life. Younger ones will be straight onto social media, stalking friends, mutual acquaintances, and following crazy leads until the truth can be discovered. But this started a decade ago, before such things were conceivable. How strange that in another decade the people that can truly understand that devastation at such a loss will be even fewer.

Anyway, as we get to see the story from both Griff and Luca's (I have always experienced this as a male name, so had a few confused moments at the beginning, but Luca here is female) viewpoint, the timing of the childhood correspondence halting was very significant to both of them.

Luca is living with the aftermath of a tragedy and, really only thanks to her wonderful therapist turned best friend/father figure, she is at least trying to do normal-ish things again. So when she takes the decision to reply to a letter from Griffin, written after an eight-year gap, it is not really surprising that it turns her world upside down, and this time in a good way.

Griffin, now a famous rock star with a pseudonym, has just as much reason to hide his real self away as Luca, but for the opposite reason. As they write again, reconnecting on a very basic level through their memories and their honesty, it is inevitable that some truths will have to be managed. The path is certainly not smooth to them possibly having a real future together.

There are some really sad moments, some really uplifting ones, and some scenes which made me laugh. Through it all though, I was certain that they deserved to find a way which would enable both of them to live the lives that they had envisaged as teens, and with a level of peace and safety.

I could easily reread this story, and enjoy it all over again – definitely added to that list.

Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times, #1 Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author. With millions of books sold, her titles have appeared on more than one hundred bestseller lists and are currently translated into twenty-six languages. She resides in New York with her husband and their three children, where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six.

Connect with Vi

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today, and #1 Wall Street Journal bestselling author of more than twenty novels. A former television news anchor, Penelope has sold more than two million books and has appeared on the New York Times bestseller list twenty-one times. She resides in Rhode Island with her husband, son, and beautiful daughter with autism.

Connect with Penelope

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads
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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Dirty Letters by Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward to read and review for this tour.

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