Monday, 15 September 2014

Sons of Anarchy Season 7, Episode 1 - My view...

*This post contains major spoilers - you have been warned...*

So, I've now watched the season 7 opener of Sons of Anarchy. The Final Ride. And I still can't type that without feeling a little stab of pain... But, what did I think of it? Well, without a shadow of a doubt that was one hell of an episode! And here are just a few of my favourite moments...

* Juice in hiding, but who knew he was so tidy? That boy can come hide at my place for as long as he likes, especially if he feels the need to run the vacuum round a couple of times, tidy the cupboards... Oh, and he's still breaking my heart, but maybe I just need to get that under control...


Juice - in hiding, but for how long...?
* Jax, full of hell and determined to do anything he can to avenge Tara's death - including sticking a fork into some poor Chinese bloke's head after he was (wrongly, obviously) blamed for Tara's death by Gemma. Anything to keep the heat off, eh, Gem? Quite honestly, though, Charlie Hunnam looks so much more attractive when he's got his angry face on. So much more attractive... I almost fancy him when he's going off on one...

* Chibs being all forceful and taking control - such a turn on, I can't even tell you, but I'm really not going there in this blog post... and he smiled! I love it when he smiles... *sigh*

* Tig being Tig. Because I just love Tig. He gets all the best lines...

* Nero still rocking those cardigans (but I do love Jimmy Smits). 

* Chucky's apparent new love of classical music... Oh, it's so good to have my boys back!

Charlie Hunnam as Jax, with Marilyn Manson... yeah... I know...

And it looks like this opener is setting up this final (nope, still can't say that word without feeling a teary build-up at the back of my eyes) season to be one blood soaked, wild and crazy ride!  Which is exactly what we want, although I'm still a bit concerned as to who is going to come out of this almost certain bloodbath alive, because Kurt Sutter has said that two club members will be dead before the season is over. Please, God, just let Chibs live. And Tig. And Bobby. And Juice... I'm really not dealing with this all that well, am I?

The Boys are back...

Anyway, I'm not here to give some long-winded recap of this episode. There are a wealth of those out there. And, to be honest, I was on the vodka on Friday night when I watched it so it'll need a second viewing from me to take it all in properly. I just feel the need to use my blog to get my feelings on this show off my chest, because this is the last time the Sons are going to be riding through the streets of Charming. And I'm starting the therapy early, because, by December, it'll all be over, and all we'll be left with is memories. And constant re-runs. And more memories. I swear to God, this show is messing me up way more than Breaking Bad did, and that's saying something. I was a wreck for about a month after that ended, so I'm dreading that final ever episode of SOA. Which, in a spot of spectacularly bad timing, is just days after my deadline to get another novel to my publishers. 

So, we've got Jax thinking Tara's death has now been avenged, when in reality we know all he's probably done is start one hell of a kick-off in Charming! I hope someone's given that new sheriff a heads-up... And I think we're going to have to wait a while yet before Tara's death is really avenged... if it is ever avenged...

What's going to happen to Unser now Juice has him held hostage in Wendy's bathroom? (Who knows? But I bet that bathroom's had a good run round with the bleach...) And will Chibs be taking control and acting all forceful every week? Because, if he is, I think I need to be more prepared... 

Anyway, that's one episode of this Final Ride (no... it's not getting easier to say that...) down, only another twelve (I think???) to go. And I can only imagine the s**t that's gonna go down over the next few weeks. And none of it is gonna be pretty...

Right, I'd better get back to the writing. I've still got a shed load of work to do on my soon-to-be-released MC Romance, and if I want you all to meet my very own group of biker boys before we say goodbye to the Sons, I'd better get my arse in gear...




Thursday, 11 September 2014

New book update, Sons of Anarchy, and a whole lotta writing!

Just realised I haven't written a new blog post for a month! And that's probably because I've had my head stuck in a manuscript for the past God knows how long. Well, around 6 weeks, give or take, to be exact. Ish. Yes, that's how long it's taken me to complete book number 11. Just 6/7 weeks. Because I bloody LOVED writing it! No, I mean, I REALLY loved writing it! So much so that I get butterflies just thinking about this book, that's how much I adored writing it. It feels as though I've waited all my writing life to create these characters, this world. Because all my life I've been a frustrated biker chick with a love of men who sometimes look as though they need a good wash, usually have facial hair that never sees a regular barber, and are covered in tattoos. I like the scruffy look, okay? I like it. I find it incredibly sexy, and now I've got my own little fictional gang of these men! I'm in frigging M/C heaven! 

Sons of Anarchy - My inspirational biker boys...

Anyway, not entirely sure what I'm doing with this book as yet. Don't know whether I'm going to self-publish it or whether I'm going to bite the bullet and let my publisher look at it, see what they think. Got a few decisions to make on that score, but, I'll be making a decision on that pretty soon because if I do decide to self-publish it then I want it out there before the end of this final series of Sons of Anarchy, which is early December. So I'd probably be looking at a late October release date because the book itself is all but done. It's about to undergo a third edit, I have a title I'm happy with, and a few cover ideas I'm playing around with so if it is gonna be another self-pubbed book then it's practically all but ready to go, which is actually really exciting! Yeah... if I wasn't so stressed out with everything I've still got left to do, writing wise - most of which is purely self-imposed - I'd be kicking my height right now! 
 
Sons of Anarchy's Tig, Chibs, and Jax... I love Chibs... just saying...

Cursing Sons of Anarchy just a tiny bit for throwing me into an obsession which meant I just HAD to write these books, but on the other hand, without that show I might never have got around to creating this bunch of characters that I completely ADORE! I think I've definitely found my niche in gritty, hard romance. Because this series of books (already started writing book 2) is most definitely romance with one hell of a kick! You like it pretty? Then step away now, because you ain't gonna like my biker boys. But I LOVE them!


My fictional motorcycle club has undergone a slight name change this week, though, after hubby said he thought my original name sounded more like a debt collection agency than an M/C. And he was forgiven only because he came up with a much better alternative. But apart from that, I'm so bloody happy with this book! As far as M/C romances go I suspect it falls more on the tame side of things, but it's still dark and gritty. Still rough-edged and hard, a bit like the men I've written about!!


So, I may be having to cut myself off from social media, friends, life in general for the next few months to get everything done that needs to be done before December 1st, but I'm fine with that. This book is almost edited to within an inch of its life now, the second book in the series has already been started, and a completely new novel has also had some work done on it. All options are being covered at the minute, sleepless nights are a regular occurrence now, and I haven't even started watching Sons of Anarchy the Final Ride! Not sure I'm emotionally ready yet to be honest. If someone could just let me know that Chibs makes it to episode 2 I might start to relax a bit more... And don't even get me started on Juice...

My man Chibs - I'm just not ready to say goodbye yet...

Anyway, it's back to the writing/editing cave for me because there's still shedloads of work to be done. But watch this space for updates on just what is happening with this M/C Romance of mine. Because, one way or another, you'll be getting to meet my biker boys. And I just hope you love them as much as I do...


Monday, 11 August 2014

Sons of Anarchy Season 6 finale, and a little social media holiday...

*IF YOU HAVEN'T YET WATCHED 'SONS OF ANARCHY', OR YOU'RE NOT COMPLETELY CAUGHT UP YET, THEN PLEASE BE AWARE THAT THIS POST CONTAINS MAJOR SPOILERS!*

So, I finally got to watch the Sons of Anarchy season 6 finale last night and, well, what can I say except... Wow!! Although I kind of had a pretty good feeling that Tara wasn't going to make it to season 7, I had no idea that was how she was going to die, or that Gemma would be the one to carry out that task quite so violently. What a way to go! Not pretty...

And I did not expect Juice to turn up and shoot the sheriff! But after that moment with Jax when, in the midst of a hug, Jax whispered "you betrayed me", you sort of knew Juice was going to do something. Bit worried about him now, though. His state of mind was pretty shaky before, but now it must be positively unbalanced! Have a bad feeling that he's probably not going to last more than a couple of episodes of season 7. And I really liked Juice. Gone right off Jax, several times, but I did feel quite sad during those final scenes, when he's holding a dead Tara, and crying. That couldn't fail to hit you hard. 

The moment my heart broke for poor Juice...
However, from what I can gather, next season he's pretty much full of hell, as you'd expect. And when he finds out what Juice has done (because he will find out), I can only hope it's a peaceful end for my favourite Puerto Rican. Can't really see that being the case, though... However, at least all my favourites are still standing - for now! Because I've heard plenty of rumours about Kurt Sutter doing a bit of a "Hamlet" with this next season and, if my memory serves me correctly, that pretty much means that everybody's probably going to end up dead at some point as this truly brilliant series takes it's final ride... I'm so gutted about that! I've only just discovered it, devoured all 6 seasons in a matter of weeks, and now that I've only just got to know these biker boys, they're going to be cruelly ripped away from me as quickly as they rode into my life. I can ask only one thing from Mr. Sutter - if you are going to do a Hamlet, and kill each of them off one by one, can we make sure Tig and Chibs are the last to go? Please?

Chibs and Tig... last men standing next season? I certainly hope so... love these guys...
Anyway, as mentally exhausting and emotionally draining as that finale was, I've got to get my head back into gear now and get down to some serious writing because I have a hellishly busy few months ahead. At the minute I'm about halfway through the first draft of a Sons of Anarchy inspired MC (motorcycle club) romance, the first in a series of books, and that needs to be finished pretty much asap, because I'm not sure this is one for my publishers, so it's more than likely going to end up being self-pubbed, possibly before Christmas - and if that's the case then I also need to start - and finish - a brand new manuscript for my publishers. By December 1st. So I need to write bloody fast right now! Which is the reason why I'm taking a bit of a social media holiday for a little while. I have to, I have no choice in reality. Even when using it purely for marketing purposes it can still be a distraction I can do without right now. I need to focus totally on my writing, otherwise I'm going to be in real trouble deadline-wise come the end of the year. And I can do without that stress.

So, for the next few months I shall be throwing myself into the world of bikers first and foremost, then when that WIP is done - hopefully by the end of September - I'll be starting on my next HarperImpulse book. All I can say is, it's a good job I love what I do... but I'm still exhausted just thinking about the next few months. The only bright light on the horizon is the fact season 7 of Sons of Anarchy is just a mere 4 weeks away now. And I, for one, can't wait...

Friday, 8 August 2014

My Favourite "Sons" of Anarchy...


Yes, I know, it's been at least five days since I last wrote a Sons of Anarchy-related post, but I've been a bit busy writing a new book, publishing another one, watching Season 6 of Sons... 

However, as I draw closer to the finale of Season 6 - just 4 more episodes to go as I write this - I thought I'd have a bit of fun and share with you all, whether you're interested or not, my favourite "sons". In order of preference, because I do have an order of preference. And it might surprise some people. Or not. Depending on how well they know me. I've always had a strange, sometimes slightly weird taste in men...

Anyway, here we go. My favourite "sons", from sixth to first...



6 - Jax

Surprised he isn't nearer the top of the list? I mean, it's not as though he isn't easy on the eye, because he is, he so is. Especially when he had that short hair in Season 4... However, now I'm well into Season 6, I can't help thinking his hair just needs a good wash now... And, to be quite honest, sometimes he does stuff that makes me wish Chibs would just turn around and smack him!


5 - Juice


Ever since his failed attempt to hang himself I've spent a ridiculous amount of time just wanting to hug Juice. I more or less still do... want to hug him, I mean. Especially after Chibs had a go at him at the beginning of Season 6....




4 - Bobby




I always think of Bobby as a bit like "daddy biker" - that big, cuddly father figure type that you could always turn to if you need to get something off your chest. He's been a loyal "son", a good friend, and I've always liked him. Yay, Bobby!







3 - Tig

I love Tig. No, I really love Tig. He's had some of the funniest, and some of the most heart-wrenching scenes in this show, and I really, truly love this character. And after spending most of Season 5 hoping and praying he got out of that season alive, I'm kind of hoping he stays that way - alive. I guess I'll know in a day or so when we finally get to the end of Season 6... but if he isn't in Season 7, gutted won't even begin to describe how I'll feel... I'm still getting over the loss of Opie. And speaking of Opie...


2 - Opie


A week and a bit ago he would have been right at the top of this list, but no. They had to go and kill his character off. And that changed everything. But I could still cry like a baby when I remember the vile and horrible way in which Opie Winston was taken from us (still can't forgive you, Kurt Sutter) because he really was my favourite biker boy. He had a big heart, a conscience. He always tried to do what he thought was best, for his family, for the club... I so need to start watching some re-runs and remember Opie for what he used to be... 



1 - Chibs


Yep. This one came from right out of left-field. The "son" I never really took all that much notice of for the first couple of seasons suddenly came along on the inside once Opie was killed off and snatched that number one spot at the top of my favourite "sons" list. I mean, he is so far up that list now that I actually fantasise about him throwing me over the back of a Harley and riding off into the sunset. He doesn't even look like the same guy that was there in the first few seasons. Somehow, he got HOT! Yes. That's my idea of hot, okay? With that grey-streaked hair and those leathers, and that Glaswegian accent... even if he could sometimes do with his own set of subtitles, I don't care. I'm not even bothered that half the time I haven't got a clue what he's saying (but it usually includes the words "kid" and "Jackie boy", and that's enough for me...) I just like to hear him say something! So he better not be dead before Season 7 either. Don't mess with me here, Sutter. I'm serious. Keep my boys Tig and Chibs alive or you'll have one very unhappy, frustrated, wannabe biker chick on your hands here. And you really wouldn't like me when I'm angry... I make Gemma look like a pussycat...


So there you have it. My six favourite "sons". My biker boys. Am I obsessed with this show? Yeah. Probably. Just a little bit. Deal with it... ;-)


Thursday, 7 August 2014

It's Publication Day for 'Final Score'! The Striker Series is complete...


Yes. It's finally here! The game is coming to an end. That final whistle is about to be blown. But who, if anyone, has won? Just where have Amber, Jim and Ryan's journeys taken them? 


If you've already read Striker and Extra Time - books #1 and #2 in the series - then you might just have been waiting for the answers to these questions. But the wait is over. The super-sexy Striker Series is now complete with today's release of Final Score, the third and final book in the series.


And if you haven't yet checked out this rather steamy trio of books, and you're looking for something to heat up your Kindle, why not give them a go? And don't let the football theme put you off - they really are more about the sex than the soccer... ;-)



All three books in the Striker Series are available to download right now!


Sunday, 3 August 2014

Sons of Anarchy - season 5: done! And I'm exhausted...!

We're about to start Sons of Anarchy season 6 tonight and, quite honestly, I'm exhausted! Watching Opie get beaten to death with an iron bar just 3 episodes into season 5 was enough to render me hopeless for at least 3 days afterwards, in fact, I'm not sure I'll ever get over that. I loved Opie. Opie was my man. I could have cried when he hit the floor, and Jax's face... I can't even write this without feeling just a little bit sick.

One of the most heartbreaking scenes in TV history for me... RIP, big guy...

But if that wasn't enough, for most of season 5 I also had to go through the pain of seeing Juice wear an almost constant expression of absolute fear (the amount of times I just wanted to hug him...), and live with the sheer, unadulterated panic that Tig might get killed off by Pope! 

Juice - character I most want to hug...
And even though my hubby kept telling me Tig wouldn't die, that Pope would get it instead, I had no idea he'd be right about that until about ten to midnight last night, when we finally got round to watching the season 5 finale. But, oh, the sigh of relief that came from me... Losing one of my favourite Sons was bad enough, but to have lost Tig as well, that would have destroyed me! And I don't even want to talk about the dog fights. Or Tig having to witness his daughter being burned alive by the aforementioned Mr. Pope. I tell you, that season was an emotional roller coaster that wrung me dry! The only bit of light relief came in the shape of the ever-brilliant Walton Goggins as Venus Van Dam. Watching the way Tig couldn't fight his attraction for that character was just hilarious! And exactly what I needed only a couple of hours after watching Opie die... you see, I still can't write that and not feel my stomach lurching with sadness, again! 

Venus and Tig - love Tig. So much...

But, on a more positive note, 5 seasons in (and we got there in just 3 and a half weeks!), and I now have a strange, unexplained but quite nice little crush on Chibs (there's just something about Tommy Flanagan, but don't ask me what... maybe I just need someone after the cruel killing of Opie... no, I'm not over it...), as well as an absolute, total obsession with this show! It's like my dream drama - men, motorbikes, loud, heavy music... I've been waiting all my life for this! And I know - I just know that when this show comes to an end after season 7 I'll be curled up in a corner sobbing like a baby, just like I did when Breaking Bad finished. 


Chibs (Tommy Flanagan) - crushing big time on this guy right now...


In the meantime, though, we've got season 6 to get through. And I swear to God, if either Tig, Chibs or Juice come to any harm I may have to take to my bed... 

Oh, and another thing, for those that might be interested. I'm now currently writing an MC romance - so, you see, this Sons of Anarchy obsession isn't distracting me in the slightest! It's actually fueling that over-active imagination of mine and could, one day soon, produce a brand new series of books from me. Watch this space...

And one final thing - Kurt Sutter, you may well be a genius for giving us Sons of Anarchy, but I'd just like you to know that I will never forgive you for doing that to Opie... ever... 

Okay. Season 6 - let's do this...



Thursday, 24 July 2014

Sons of Anarchy - my new TV obsession...?

I'm in love with a new TV show! Yes, this time last year I was binge-watching The Sopranos, followed by Breaking Bad, and when both of those ended I was nothing short of distraught. I still only have to hear the Breaking Bad theme tune and I remember how utterly lost I felt after watching the final episode. I could have sat in a corner and cried, I missed Walter and Jesse so much. And whilst I'm aware that, yes, I might need some sort of therapy, I slowly got over it. Kind of. In a way. I threw myself into Justified (damn you Timothy Olyphant for looking so bloody HOT in that Stetson!), and I fell in love with that show, too. Just not to the extent that I fell in love with The Sopranos and Breaking Bad. The characters in those shows became such a huge part of my life (am I sounding sad here? I haven't had a holiday in over five years so I may need to get out of the house more...) that they left this gaping hole when they disappeared from my TV screen. And because we watched both those series' in just a matter of weeks - literally binge-watching them episodes at a time - I think the loss was felt more because we'd only had them for such a short period.


And now it's happening again. Because I have a new TV love affair that's just ridden into my life - Sons of Anarchy. I'd heard about this show, heard people raving about it, how they'd become addicted to it, and because it was about a biker gang I knew I had to watch it at some point. And that point has arrived. Just a week or so ago we began season one. Now, just days later, we're almost done with season three. And I'm addicted. Really, really addicted. I mean, not just "oh, I can't miss an episode of this" addicted. No, I'm 100% "I HAVE TO WATCH EPISODES ONE AFTER THE OTHER UNTIL I REALLY DO HAVE TO GET SOME SLEEP!" addicted. In fact, the Commonwealth Games couldn't have come at a better time because now that there really is nothing on the TV in the evenings unless you're into sporting action (it isn't football, so I'm not interested), boring crap on BBC Four or Big Brother (that really should have died a death by now), it means we can do nothing but watch Sons of Anarchy until we have to force ourselves to turn off the TV and go to bed! 

Maybe it's because it's about bikers (I have a thing for tattooed men, beards, bikes and loud rock music), or maybe it's because it's just great drama, I don't know, I just know that I've fallen in love with the characters, and I know that when this upcoming final season is over, it's going to hurt almost (almost!) as much as that feeling of emptiness I felt when Breaking Bad ended. And that stung!

Opie and Tig
I have favourite characters, of course. And funnily enough, one of them isn't Jax, although Charlie Hunnam plays a great part. No, it's my man Opie who's a real favourite with that beard and the long hair, and that almost lost expression that's sometimes evident with him. Makes him seem almost vulnerable at times. I love Tig - he's weird, left-of-centre, and I like that. And I really like Katey Sagal's character, Gemma Teller. That strong, feisty matriarchal figure who's not to be messed with. And Bobby - he's almost like the dad of the gang, always there to make sure everything's okay, that everyone's doing alright. Because, when all is said and done, SAMCRO is a family. 

But, in reality, there isn't really one of them I don't like. I've welcomed these "bad boys" into my living room on a nightly basis now, and I look forward to those few hours every evening when I can sit down and join them do whatever it is they have to do to survive. And so far I'm loving every loud, tyre screeching, gun shooting second of it. Yes, it can get quite violent, but it also has that slightly lighter edge to it at times, bringing in a touch of humour now and again just to balance it out. It's everything I look for in a great TV show - characters I love, characters I care about, and stories that actually grab your attention. I am going to be so lost when this ends... so lost...

Charlie Hunnam as Jax Teller
But, I'm sure some of you out there will remember that when I first started watching Justified at the back end of last year, I got so hooked that it sparked off a writing frenzy, resulting in me finishing my novel Unbreakable in just six weeks - a book inspired heavily by the characters of Raylan Givens and Boyd Crowder. So, could my new-found Sons of Anarchy obsession mean that there's a biker gang romance on the way? Watch this space... I know one thing for sure, when I'm in my 50s (and I'm not that far off!) I want to be dressing like Gemma Teller... ;-)

Gemma Teller
Oh, and one interesting fact to share before I go and get thinking about this biker gang romance... Charlie Hunnam was actually born right here, in the UK, in my neck of the woods - Newcastle-upon-Tyne! He's actually a Geordie by birth! I totally love that fact...