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Release Blitz: Stolen Wishes by Lexi Ryan {Excerpt, Review, +Giveaway}

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Stolen Wishes (New Hope #1.5)
   by: Lexi Ryan

Publication Date: Jan. 7, 2014
Publisher: Ever After, LLC
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: New Adult
Source: e-ARC provided by the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 91 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords
My Rating: 5/5 stars

A sexy smile. Intense blue eyes. A goodness that makes him want to save me from these rumors when no one else would care. I didn't ask for a hero. William Bailey was never supposed to be anything more than a wish, a dream, an unrequited crush. Not for a girl like me--a girl whose fractured family has stolen her chance at a decent life.

Since the death of my parents, I've always done what’s expected of me, what's "best" for me. Until Cally. The moment her haunted eyes meet mine, the fractured pieces of my heart feel whole again. I don’t just want to save her. I need her to save me.

Stolen chances. Unbroken wishes. Two lonely souls grasping for hope in the darkness.

**This novella takes place seven years before the events in WISH I MAY and shows William and Cally falling in love for the first time. It can be read before or after WISH I MAY or on its own.**

**Contains sexual content and adult language and situations. Intended for mature readers.**

Stolen Wishes is currently FREE on all the above platforms.
It is no secret I absolutely ADORED Wish I May, Cally and William's story, the second novel in Lexi Ryan's New Hope series. We briefly met William in the first book in the series Unbreak Me, but he needed his own book. Having read Wish I May first, I must admit Stolen Wishes was rather bittersweet for me. (Only because I know how everything plays out!) However, it really was a beautifully written novella about first love and acceptance of one's true self.
Cally is such a sweet character. Living in a small town is not easy for her, as her mother has earned an unfavorable reputation and Cally is the one to endure the backlash. The novella opens with one of Cally's peers being crude and ugly to her, but luckily William Bailey happens to be there to step in and defend her. Cally is shocked that William would be so nice to her. He is good-looking, popular, wealthy and she never expected him to know who she was. However, William has noticed Cally before in school and has a crush on her. While she is filled with shame over what people are saying about her mother, William doesn't care about any of that. He sees the girl who wanders around star-gazing and senses a kindred spirit that he wants to get to know. After losing his parents at a young age, William now lives with his grandmother. However, she isn't the same as a loving, nurturing mother. She also grieves for the child she lost and William ends up feeling alone while living with her.
I loved William's character. He doesn't let being popular go to his head and he doesn't care what people think. He likes Cally and wants to show her that. He doesn't take her out to expel the rumors about them, he takes her out because she's pretty and sweet and he wants to spend time with her.
I really liked how Ryan approached the topic of sex in this novella. Cally and William are both in high school and that is the time teenagers typically push boundaries and see how far they can go. However, while Cally wants to go further with William, she is terrified of ending up like her mother. She isn't ready to move forward sexually with William and I like that he is understanding and doesn't push her into more. However, hormones are not the easiest things to control and Cally finds herself wishing she hadn't set those boundaries, especially since she knows how much William loves her and she him. Again, Ryan approaches this in such a realistic way and I like how she handled the progression and development of Cally and William's physical and emotional relationship.
Again, Stolen Wishes is rather bittersweet, as it's easy to make promises of forever to the one you love at a young age. However, the future is uncertain and Cally and William are headed in different directions. Will love be enough?


"Hey, William,” a girl calls from the kitchen. “Why don’t you come in here and take a shot?”

I hardly have a chance to tense before Will pulls me closer. “Can’t do that, Meredith. My date’s here.”

Lizzy and Hanna both turn to us at his words, and I feel my own eyes go wide.

“I’d consider it a personal favor if you could roll with this,” he whispers into my ear. “Meredith has been trying to get me to do body shots since she got here two hours ago.”

“You don’t drink?” I ask, not that it’s my business. I’ve just never been to a party with alcohol before, and I’m not sure what to expect. From the stories I’ve heard, I half expected everyone to be wasted by the time we got here.
“It’s not the drinking that I mind. She’s just not my type.” When I frown at him, confused, his lips quirk in a half-smile. “You do know what a body shot is, don’t you?”

I shake my head.

“Want to find out?” His fingers trail over the sensitive dip in my spine as he asks, and I nod. I would probably agree to anything he asked me right now.

He takes me to the kitchen, his hot hand never leaving the small of my back.

Lizzy and Hanna step back and study us as he leads me to the island. I’d feel guilty about abandoning them tonight, but they seem to be having a great time.

“Where’s the tequila, Max?” Will calls.

Max hoists a bottle of amber liquid in the air and snags a shot glass off the counter.

“Do you know what a snakebite is?” Will asks me quietly. He’s standing close so only I can hear him when he talks.

I bite my lip. “I don’t really go to many parties.”

Next to us, Max fills the shot glass with tequila.

“A snakebite is a shot of tequila that you take with salt and lime,” Will explains to me.

“What makes it a body shot?” I ask.

His throat moves as he swallows, and his blue eyes go darker somehow, his pupils getting bigger. His lips part as he studies mine. “It’s a body shot if you take all the parts of the snakebite off someone else’s body.”

That makes my pulse kick up a notch. I’m still trying to puzzle out the logistics when Max calls, “No hands, Bailey.”

Will winks at me. “And I can’t use my hands for anything but putting the salt on you. Are you still game?”

I nod wordlessly, and I’m rewarded with one of Will’s full-out grins. I don’t need to know details to understand his mouth is going to be on me, and I like the idea of that. A lot.

Will’s hands slide to my waist and tighten, and before I realize what he’s doing, he’s hoisting me up on the counter. I squeak, and the girls cheer. All of them except Kristen and Meredith, that is. They’re leaning against the fridge, scowling at me like I killed their puppy.

Max hands me the shot glass and looks at me expectantly.

“Do I hold it?” I whisper.

“If you want,” Max says. “But I think you shouldn’t make it so easy on my boy here.”

Will shakes his head. “Whatever you’re comfortable with.”

Lizzy rushes over and cups her hand around my ear. “Slide it between your breasts. Trust me.”

I gape at her, and she shrugs innocently before joining Hanna at the edge of the kitchen.

I may be inexperienced, but I’m not naïve and I get what this game is about. My cheeks heat as I slide the glass into my cleavage. It’s cool against my hot skin, and Will’s eyes burn into me as he watches me position it.

Max offers me a lime wedge.

“Do you need your friend to tell you what to do with that too?” Kristen calls.

“Shut up, Kristen,” Will says. “You didn’t know what you were doing your first time either.”

But she’s right. Lizzy shouldn’t have to tell me what to do. I take the lime and put it between my teeth, facing out. The citrusy pulp presses against my lips, making them tingle. Or maybe the tingle is from the idea of William’s lips close to mine.

Will grins and brushes my hair off my neck. “Ready or not.”

Don't miss out on what happens next for William and Cally in Wish I May!



A New York Times and USA Today bestselling romance author, Lexi Ryan considers herself the luckiest chick she knows. Her books have been described as intense, emotional, and wickedly sexy. Lexi herself has only been described using two of those adjectives (feel free to guess but she’s not telling). When not writing, she enjoys watching football, perfecting her chocolate martini, and reading her way to the title of Biggest Romance Fangirl Evah. A former college professor, her biggest fears include faculty meetings and large stacks of ungraded freshman composition papers. She now writes full-time from her home in Indiana, where she lives with her husband and two children and their neurotic dog.

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  1. You and Chelsea are killing me with this series! Both of you loved it and that makes me want to drop everything and read it. I NEED MORE TIME!!! Great review!

    1. Ahh! I love this series Teresa! It's so good!!! LOL!

  2. Wonderful review. I really would like to read this one, I am a sucker for small town romances. Thanks for sharing the excerpt too.

    1. Thanks Jenea! This one is free right now! :D You'll need Wish I May right after though! :D

  3. I really hope love will be enough! This sounds like such a sweet romance. Both Callly and William sound like great characters. Talk about a hot excerpt! You have me completely interested in this series! Awesome Review Jess :)

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

  4. I need to get to this series!! OMG! I adored that excerpt, and just, yeah. I really wanna read this!!! :D

  5. Flipping heck, I LOVED that excerpt! From your review, I just had to get a copy from Amazon :D Great review, Jessica. So glad you loved it!

  6. Great review girl! I really liked this one too and I definitely felt a little more emotional because I knew what was going to happen.

    1. Yes! I was sad at the end. I wanted to reread Wish I May!

  7. You have me so curious about William's story. When we first met him in Unbreak Me, I couldn't stand him - I am very curious to see how he develops and will win me over.

    1. Yes! I didn't care for him either! I felt bad for him, but was kinda ehh. I loved him so much in these. I'm glad he got his HEA.

  8. Thanks for sharing a great review, Jessica. I haven't read this series yet but boy, I sure want to move it up on the tbr now! :)

    1. Thanks Brandee! I love this series! Lexi is such an awesome author! I hope you get to read them!


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