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A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Blog Tour: Shaken Not Stirred by Alyssa Rose Ivy {Review, Guest Post, + Giveaway}

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Welcome to my stop on the Shaken Not Stirred blog tour hosted by InkSlingerPR!
Today I am excited to share my review, a guest post by Alyssa herself, and a giveaway with you all!

Shaken Not Stirred (Mixology #1)
   by: Alyssa Rose Ivy

Publication Date: Jan. 7, 2014
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: New Adult
Source: e-ARC provided by InkSlingerPR and the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 206 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 3/5 stars

Finding the perfect guy is like mixing the perfect drink. It's all about the taste and presentation.

Maddy's gone off the deep end, at least that's what her family thinks when she handles her med school rejections by moving to the Outer Banks. It doesn't help that she's paying her bills by bartending and is sharing walls with two guys, even if one of them is her childhood best friend.

Her choice of men seems more balanced on the surface—Colin is driven, sexy, and gainfully employed, but she can't help spending her Thursday nights searching for the perfect drink for Lyle, whose music captivates her with its haunting lyrics. Maddy believes everyone has a perfect drink—and finding Lyle's isn't a challenge she's willing to lose.

Alyssa’s Top Reads of 2013

Alyssa is talking to us today about her Top Reads of 2013! She's got some great books on her list!


I find it incredibly hard to pick favorites, but here are a few reads with romance that I really enjoyed in 2013.

Note: Several released in 2012, but I read them in 2013

Taming The Wolf- Stephanie Nelson

This tops my list of favorite shifter books read this year

Confined- Jennifer Snyder

I loved the conclusion to Jennifer’s NA Paranormal/supernatural Tethered series!

The Ghost and the Graveyard- Genevieve Jack

Ok, clearly I was on a paranormal kick in 2013. I love the humor in this one.

The Secret World of Alaina Downs-Rebecca Rynecki

I loved this NA Fantasy Romance!

A Matter of Fate by Heather Lyons

What a love triangle!

Five of my most anticipated reads for 2014:

Control You- Jennifer Snyder

-Ok, I’ve already read this one, but it’s releasing in 2014 so I’m putting it here.  Awesome NA Contemporary romance.

The Deep End of the Seat- Heather Lyons

I’m so excited to see what Heather does with the Medusa story. I love her writing, and I’ve been hearing wonderful things about this book.

London Falling- T.A. Foster

I’m getting ready to dive into this one. This is T.A.’s first contemporary romance, and I can’t wait to see where she goes with it.

Emerald Darkness- Sarra Cannon

Sarra Cannon ‘s NA spinoff to her Demons series is definitely on my anticipated list. I can’t wait to dive into this new series.

Nichole Chase- Accidental Assassin

I love the sound of this one!


My Review: 


I am a big Alyssa Rose Ivy fan so when I saw the tour opportunity for this one pop up, I had to sign up! I absolutely adored her The Hazards of Skinny Dipping earlier in the year- it was a cute, fun read and I loved the quirky characters she had created. I really liked the side characters Ivy has created in Shaken Not Stirred and I really felt they stole the limelight for me. However, the pacing in this one was a lot slower than I anticipated and I felt the plot lacked action. I had a difficult time pinpointing the direction the book was heading toward and felt confused by some of the characters' reactions to certain situations.

I had a really difficult time connecting with the main characters and their relationship in this one. I liked Maddy ok, but I didn't really care for her indecisiveness. We begin the novel with her pining over Lyle, a singer/guitar player, who plays at the bar she works at every Thursday. She wants him to notice her and is determined to make him the perfect drink. Maddy has a knack for making people their perfect drink, yet she can't seem to pin down Lyle's.

I felt for Maddy because I can remember a few guys I was interested in, wishing they would notice me. She believes herself to have formed a connection to him because of his lyrics, but really he's more a result of wishful thinking versus a reality. I honestly felt Lyle would play a larger role in the novel than he did, but I am thankful there wasn't a love triangle. This is where Colin comes in. Colin has been pursuing Maddy for awhile and is very interested in going out with her. Colin is good-looking, successful, and does not give up on asking her out.  In the beginning, it didn't seem Maddy was all that interested in Colin, but didn't feel things with Lyle were going anywhere, so she says yes to Colin just because. I had a hard time feeling the chemistry between them.


Colin drove me a bit crazy. I liked that he was a genuine good guy, but I felt some of his actions and things he would say were a bit unrealistic. In the beginning I thought he was a little too perfect and I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. I kept thinking, 'Surely this guy can't be this perfect, sweet, AND romantic?' But, hey I'm really jaded these days. :)


We did start to see Colin's imperfections come through though. He would get upset over little things with Maddy (like not being ready when he showed up early) and he definitely had some jealousy issues going on with Maddy's male roomies and best friends. He also made a few really big mistakes concerning defining their relationship.
Colin is a few years older than Maddy and I like that he is stable, driven, and has a good job. He is mature for his age, but I felt his devotion to not only his job, but his friends, put Maddy in an awkward place. He would show up late to dates, stand her up, and leave her waiting around while he resolved other things. I honestly believe that Colin really cares for her, but he seemed to have a funny way of showing it. I thought Maddy had every right to be irritated and pissed off at him. Maddy definitely doesn't take crap from others, so I was kind of surprised at her willingness to pursue a relationship with him, especially after being stood up and ignored at a function he brought her to.
However, Maddy likes the way Colin makes her feel when they're together, not being interrupted. He is sensitive and caring to her needs, and isn't looking for a casual thing. He is planning for his future and he wants Maddy to be a part of that.
Even though the relationship in this book didn't quite do it for me, I loved the friendships Maddy had. Macon and Brody, Maddy's roommates and good friends, were awesome. I loved their banter with each other and I loved how the guys really took up for Maddy. If she was in a situation she didn't want to be in, they would come and get her, no questions asked. They are protective of her and want her to be happy.
I also really liked Colin's sister, Carly. She is spunky and fun-loving and while things between the two girls were a bit awkward to start, they easily broke the ice and became friends.
While I'm glad of the way the book ended, I felt like it was lacking resolution on Maddy's end. I admired her for standing up and making the decisions she did, even though they were difficult ones. She is at a transition point in her life and she is trying to decide what she wants to do with her life. I don't really feel we got a sense of where Maddy was going to go by the end and I felt it played a large part in the story.
Overall, Shaken Not Stirred, while not my favorite book from Ivy, is still worth checking out.


About the Author:

Alyssa Rose Ivy is a New Adult and Young Adult author who loves to weave stories with romance and a southern setting. Although raised in the New York area, she fell in love with the South after moving to New Orleans for college. After years as a perpetual student, she turned back to her creative side and decided to write. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and two young children, and she can usually be found with a cup of coffee in her hand.

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  1. Ohh I'm sorry this one didn't quite do it for you but that you were still able to enjoy it. It's always a pain when you can see the chemistry. Also I think id punch Colin for that crap. Great review!

    1. Thanks Teresa. I really wanted to like it, considering Alyssa is one of my favorites, but this one just didn't do it for me. And yeah I wanted to punch Colin a few times over!

  2. Great review hon! This guy does sound a little too perfect :) Glad you enjoyed it overall, even though it wasn't your fav


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