“The story reads like a movie . . powerful and intoxicating … and sinfully sexy. GRIP has everything—dynamic characters, soulful plot, and a lesson at the end that will change the way you look at life. One of my favorite reads this year. Maybe ever. 5 massive, gripping stars from me!” — Adriana Lock, USA Today Bestselling Author
Flow, the prequel to GRIP, by Kennedy Ryan is now live and TOTALLY FREE!
And GRIP, the riveting full-length conclusion, is LIVE!
ENTER THE GIVEAWAY on Kennedy’s Page!
Check out the Teespring Campaign!
Grip by Kennedy Ryan, hands down, deserves all the crowns, every single one available. Bristol and Grip’s story is raw, heartbreaking, and beautiful. But it is more than a romance that will get affect your soul, it is story that reflects the social issues that plague society today, making this book exponentially more powerful and relevant than the average romance novel.
Grip is still the man readers fell in love with in Flow, incredibly passionate about music, its ability to change the world, and Bristol. Readers watch him try to win Bristol back, to show her how he feels, and to get her to admit her feelings for him. As with all people, he has a breaking point, and when he reaches it, when he chooses another path, he shattered my heart right along with Bristol’s. Even with the heartbreak inflicted by his choices, readers cannot fault Grip. He has been pushed there, he has been hurt, and he is trying to keep his own heart from completely shattering. Grip, however, doesn’t stay down for long, and he comes back for the woman he loves with gusto, forcing her to break down her walls. What will really solidify readers’ love of this man is his dedication to their relationship. With the numerous social issues that plague their relationship, he stands firm beside her, reinforcing the idea that you love someone for who they are not the color of their skin, their social status, etc, but who they are as a person. Grip’s character is so complex, deep, socially conscious, passionate, protective, just everything a reader wants in a hero.
Bristol will break readers. They will want to scream at her, beat her, and throttle her, because they see what she is doing. They know the outcome of her choices, and, just like Grip, it shatters them. Readers, although so angry with her, feel nothing but compassion for this emotionally damaged woman. Knowing her background and her relationship with her family makes the reader fully understand the choices she makes, but it doesn’t make the pain hurt any less. It makes readers want her to wake up and see what she is doing, to see the irrevocable damage she could be causing. When she finally realizes what her actions have created, she is at a loss for the destruction she caused, and although she could be angry and lash out, she accepts responsibility for her actions. As much as Bristol’s choices destroy readers, they will rejoice when her walls crumble. Seeing her own up to what she feels and what she wants is one of the most rewarding parts of the book. What I love most about her though is that what she once thought was her weakness, her open heart and willingness to sacrifice everything, she finally recognizes as her strength, as the one thing that makes her perfectly suited for Grip and the many social issues that will weigh on their relationship. In addition to that, Bristol is the epitome of how society should be in regards to social issues. She doesn’t hide behind her ignorance. She embraces it, asks Grip to call her out on it, and wants to understand and be better. She doesn’t use her ignorance as an excuse, but educates herself in order to be a better person for not only herself but also Grip.
From the opening pages of this book, readers will feel that pain and anguish Bristol and Grip endure as their relationship is in a constant state of uncertainty. It is clear to the reader that they both still love each other, but there is so much that has happened between Flow, the prequel to Grip, and the beginning of this book that prevent them from reconnecting. Bristol’s familial relationships, particularly with her mother, and certain revelations pertaining to her family have forced her to raise her walls. She fears that her open heart, her endless capacity to sacrifice for the people she loves makes her weak, makes her easy to destroy. Grip is on the brink of success with the release of his debut album, and while he has endlessly pursued Bristol in hopes of winning her back, his determination and belief in them as anything more than friends is dwindling. Neither can truly hide their feelings for the other, and every single scene with them together is charged with emotion, feelings so powerful that I felt my heartbreak several times throughout the novel. Each decision they make, while painful to witness, is completely understandable. They are hurt and broken and struggling to find their way back to each other, but their journey is so much more than this. It is about breaking down walls, facing their world as couple, refusing to yield to societal and familial expectations, and supporting and sacrificing for each other. Their relationship becomes one to emulate, and their journey while painful is ultimately rewarding.
More than the characters and the plot, which I am absolutely in love with, this novel is filled with poignant social commentary, and not at all in a preachy way. The many social issues she addresses in the novel, lack of understanding of social issues between both races, lack of acceptance over interracial relationships, lack of social justice for African Americans, as well as the many issues facing inner city kids, are all presented to the reader. Just like Grip does in Flow, Ms. Kennedy offers up these ideas to readers and allows them to wrestle with the concepts, whether previously known or not, to draw their own conclusions. More than anything, though, Kennedy Ryan expresses the idea of tolerance, of acceptance, of trying to understand each other versus reaching for hate and clinging to preconceived notions of each other. And for this reason, Flow and Grip will be novels with staying power.
These two books are going down as my favorite reads of 2017. That is right, the number one spot! Ms. Ryan has woven together a beautifully raw examination of the plights of society while delivering one of the most beautiful love stories I’ve ever read. This book, these characters, the author’s words have burrowed into my soul, and I feel as though I have been altered by being immersed in this world, which is not just a sign of a great romance but fantastic literature!
ARC received in exchange for an honest review.
Resisting an irresistible force wears you down and turns you out.
I’ve been doing it for years.
I may not have a musical gift of my own, but I’ve got a nose for talent and an eye for the extraordinary.
And Marlon James – Grip to his fans – is nothing short of extraordinary.
Years ago, we strung together a few magical nights, but I keep those memories in a locked drawer and I’ve thrown away the key.
All that’s left is friendship and work.
He’s on the verge of unimaginable fame, all his dreams poised to come true.
I manage his career, but I can’t seem to manage my heart.
It’s wild, reckless, disobedient.
And it remembers all the things I want to forget.
Get your copy of Grip today!
JOIN THE SPOILER ROOM AFTER YOU FINISH!
Grip leans into me, pushing back my hair and rolling his still-icy beer bottle over my neck. I swallow, but don’t dare look at him, hoping he’ll drop it, but he doesn’t.
“When you grow up on the streets, you don’t just develop a sixth sense.” He captures a lock of my hair and tests it between his fingers. “You have six, seven, eight, nine of ’em, because those instincts could be the difference between death or life. My mom and Jade have so many senses they almost know what you’re thinking before you think it. And even though I’ve never told her, Jade only had to be in the room with us for a hot minute to know I want you.”
I clench my eyes closed and pull in a stuttering breath, trapping my bottom lip between my teeth.
“Don’t do this, Grip.”
“Jade’s right,” he continues as if I hadn’t spoken, hadn’t asked him to stop. “My mom would flip if I brought a white girl home. If I brought you home. Maybe it is bigoted and ancient, but that’s just her. You know better than most that we don’t get to choose our family, but we still gotta love them.”
I don’t respond to that. He knows how contentious things have been between my brother and my parents. Beyond the headlines everyone else has seen, he knows how hard I’ve worked to reconcile them. I moved to LA to help Rhyson with his career, yes, but also to bridge the country-wide chasm between the two factions of my family.
“Like you, I’d do anything for my family.” He comes in an inch closer, caressing under my chin and tilting it up with his index finger. “But if you’d ever give me a shot, I wouldn’t give a fuck what anyone thought. I’d take you home to my mama.”
I’m a little too high and a lot too horny for this conversation, for the stone-hard thigh pressing against me, for the heat coming off his body and smothering my resistance. I try to sit up, hoping it will clear my head so I can make my escape, but his hand presses gently into my chest, just above the swell of my breasts, compelling me back into the cushion. His lips hover over mine, and I will him to kiss me because I’ll make the first move if he doesn’t. After years of not moving, I have no idea how I’ll explain that once the smoke clears.
Sometimes at night after the chaos dies, I think about our first kiss at the top of a Ferris wheel. Just like then, his lips start soft, brushing mine like wings in sweet sweeps, coaxing me open and delving into me. Sampling me, he groans into my mouth and chases my tongue. The rough palm of his hand cups my face, angling me so he can dive deeper. He doesn’t come up for air, but keeps kissing me so deeply I can’t breathe. He tastes so good, I’ll choose him over air as long as I can. Why is it never like this with anyone else? I want it to be so bad, but it never is.
He releases my lips to scatter kisses down my neck. My back arches, and my nipples go tight. He knows that’s my spot. After all this time, he still knows. My neck is so incredibly sensitive, a gateway to the rest of my body.
“You taste exactly the same.” His words come on a labored breath in my ear. “Do you know how long it’s been since I kissed you?”
“Eight years.” He shakes his head, eyes riveting mine in light lent by candles and the moon. “And you taste exactly the same.”
Get Flow for FREE today!
In 8 years, Marlon James will be one of the brightest rising stars in the music industry.
Bristol Gray will be his tough, no-nonsense manager.
But when they first meet, she’s a college student finding her way in the world,
and he’s an artist determined to make his way in it.
From completely different worlds,
all the things that should separate them only draw them closer.
It’s a beautiful beginning, but where will the story end?
FLOW is the prequel chronicling the week of magical days and nights
that will haunt Grip & Bristol for years to come.
Get your copy of Flow here:
About the Author:
Kennedy loves to write about herself in third person. She loves Diet Coke…though she’s always trying to quit. She adores her husband…who she’ll never quit. She loves her son, who is the most special boy on the planet. And she’s devoted to supporting and serving families living with Autism.
And she writes love stories!
For updates, new releases, giveaways and other adventures, subscribe to her newsletter: https://app.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/j9u8i3