Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Format: Paperback
Publisher: Allium Press
Pages: 382 pages
Release Date: June 8, 2014
Source of my copy: author
Synopsis
It’s 1981. Twenty-four-year-old Julia Nash has recently arrived in Manhattan, where she works as a publisher’s assistant. She dreams of becoming an editor with her own stable of bestselling authors—but it is hard to get promoted in the recession-clobbered book biz.

Julia blows off steam by going dancing downtown with her best friend, Vicky. One night, a hot British guitarist invites them into his VIP section. Despite an entourage of models and groupies, Jack chooses Julia as his girl for the evening—and when Jack Kipling picks you, you go with it. The trouble is … he’s never met a girl like her before. And she resists being just one in a long line.

Jack exposes her to new experiences, from exclusive nightclubs in SoHo to the Chateau Marmont in Hollywood; from mind-bending recording sessions to wild backstage parties. Yet Julia is afraid to fall for him. Past relationships have left her fragile; one more betrayal just might break her.

As she fends off her grabby boss and tries to move up the corporate ladder, Julia’s torrid relationship with Jack takes her to heights she’s never known—and plunges her into depths she’s never imagined.

With a fascinating inside look at publishing, this entertaining story of a bookish young woman’s adventures with a rock superstar is witty, moving, and toe-curlingly steamy.



I absolutely enjoyed Come Dancing! I'm giving it 

Ever since reading Catherine McKenzie's Arranged a couple of months ago, I've been in the mood for fun women's fiction with a strong happily-ever-after kind of romance and I found it in Come Dancing.

The description above does a good job explaining the premise of the story but it makes it sound like Julia just pretty much fell into Jack's bed and got really caught up in Jack's glamorous world. That isn't it at all. Julia had a good head on her shoulders and that's what I most liked about her. I loved Julia and connected with her. She's very intelligent, bookish and loved books (like me!), she's at the start of her career and she has her eye on advancing (I'm also at the start of my career and working on my tenure), she knows hard work is the way to success and did not succumbed to her douche of a boss's inappropriate come-ons.

She was really into Jack and their hot new relationship, but she did not forget about building her career in the publishing world, she didn't use her connection with Jack and his famous friends to get ahead, she didn't forget her friends... basically, she was still her own woman and didn't lose herself despite the fact that she's dating a world famous rock star. One of the big issues she had was that she never really trusted that Jack was in a monogamous relationship with her. Yes, she also had her daddy issues and her previous relationship did not end well but I totally got where she was coming from when it came to Jack and monogamy. I never really trusted Jack myself. 

And Jack... Okay, I liked him by the end of the novel but he was always kind of shady to me, especially when it came to women. This may be completely personal because, as I mentioned in a previous review, I'm not into rockstar heroes. I pictured him as Russell Brand in my head and I didn't find him sexy. I don't know you guys... I never really got into Jack.

The fact that Come Dancing was set in New York in 1981 gave it an interesting flavor. I'm not familiar with the 80s (I'm a late 90s/early 2000s child) but I'm those are will find a lot to bring them back to that era. I also found the peek into the world of book publishing fascinating being the lover of books that I am. But the rampant recreational use of cocaine and weed though! Was it really like that in the 80s or it was just the rockstar lifestyle?

There was a lot to like in Come Dancing. Julia's choices and responses were grounded in her personality and her experiences so I got her character. It read like a very, very good romantic comedy movie. There was drama but nothing too dramatic. There were some steamy scenes too so have a cool drink while you're reading. Come Dancing was a really fun, readable chick lit--I was entertained and whenever I put down the novel, I was always eager to pick it back up. Highly recommended for an entertaining weekend read.



“Are you ever getting out of there?” my friend Vicky complained.

I crooked the receiver in my shoulder, scrabbling papers together. “I’m heading out now. Harvey dumped a bunch of stuff on me right before he took off.” My boss, the publisher, liked to clear his desk at the end of the week—which meant I got to stay late every Friday night.

“About time. I’ll see you at your place in an hour.”

“We’re going to stick together tonight, right? Avoid the meat market?” I loved dancing off my pent-up energy from long hours sitting at my desk. Vicky saw it more as a smorgasbord of men,served up buffet-style.

“Depends what’s on the menu. See you in a few.”

The minute she hung up, my line rang again. “Is this Julia?” a familiar voice screeched.

“Hi, Louise. How’s it going in Seattle?” Our high-strung author was on a twelve-city tour for her new thriller, and the campaign had been plagued with problems. A celebrated Texas crime reporter, she had braved drug dealers’ bullets but couldn’t cope with delayed flights and lumpy hotel pillows. Harvey had stopped taking her calls a week ago, and ever since she’d been haranguing me.

“The escort hasn’t shown up yet. Why can’t these people be prompt?” Louise fretted.

I held back from pointing out that it was over three hours until her event. “Let me see if anyone’s left in publicity; maybe they can locate her.”

I scurried around the corner to the desolate PR department. The lights in Erin’s cubicle were still on, which gave me hope. A few doors down, I found her on her knees in front of the copy machine. Erin looked up at me and smiled. “Got it!” she exclaimed, extracting an inky wad.

“Could you come deal with Louise? She’s all pumped up for her signing, but the escort has gone awol.” I rolled my eyes.

“God forbid she should ask the front desk to call her a cab,” Erin grumbled as she followed me down the hall. “She’s stared down gun-toting Mafiosi, but on the road she turns into a quivering mass of jelly.”

“Typical of her,” I said. Most of our authors were great, but a few were real doozies. “Do you want to come out with me and Vicky later? We’re going to hit the Palladium around eleven.”

“I have to finish a press release for that astrology guide. Another glam night in the big city.”

“Okay, be that way. Call me if you change your mind.” I ducked into my office and switched Louise over to Erin, covered my typewriter, then crammed my weekend reading into my backpack.

I sprinted down the deserted hall past shelves overflowing with manuscripts, a few framed awards gathering dust. Our titles ranged from literary to pure fluff; with the economy still in the pits, we were hawking anything from pop psychology to diet fads. This had been a shock when I’d arrived as a starry-eyed editorial assistant after a brief stint in grad school, thinking I’d be spending my weekends holed up with hot talent from The New Yorker. But now I was seasoned enough to plow through the B-list celebrity memoirs and breastfeeding manuals, while relishing any good novels that came my way.

I caught the elevator with a jittery messenger who bounced his bike tire, making the floor shimmy. I waved to the security guard and headed down lower Park Avenue in the balmy air. Usually I walked home to save money on subway tokens; I figured I had time tonight since my best friend was probably still primping.

Vicky had left the company a few months ago to join the publicity department of a larger midtown publisher. I missed her at the office, and I was also envious of her escape from assistantdom. But we still got together on weekends, and now I couldn’t wait to go to our favorite club. We liked the Palladium for its edgy mix of punks, rockers, and regular people like us.

I wove through some guys hissing “Sens, sensimilla!” in Washington Square and stopped at a street vendor selling earrings. A pair with long strands of beads and feathers caught my eye. I fingered them for a minute, calculating. Seven bucks for drinks; three for a cab home tonight ... Reluctantly I put them back.

Halfway down MacDougal, I came to a screeching halt. An absolutely perfect small table was sitting right in the middle of the sidewalk. I stepped close for a better look. Gold leaf curlicues adorned its surface, and ornate lion heads were carved into its corners. I gave it a shake to see if the legs were loose, but it didn’t even wobble. I couldn’t believe someone had thrown out something this nice—it wasn’t even large garbage night! At last I could get rid of the stacked milk crates I ate on.

Now I just had to get it home. My place on Broome Street was eight blocks away, and the table was about three feet square. Maybe if I swung my backpack around to the front and hoisted the table on my back ...

As I stood there considering, a guy in a dirty tee-shirt approached, holding a can of beer. “You need some help with that?” he asked, swaying a little.

“I think I can get it. Thanks anyway.”

The man leaned against the brick wall of the apartment building to watch. Turning around, I backed up to the table. I tried to reach behind and grasp its sides, but I couldn’t bend back far enough—why I’d always stunk at the limbo-la. Maybe if I bent lower ... I crouched down, the backpack wedged against my belly like an unwanted pregnancy, and strained to get a grip on its legs.

Suddenly a woman ran screeching out of the building. “Stop that! What are you doing with my table?”

I stared at her. “This is yours? I thought somebody was throwing it away.”

“Are you kidding? This is an antique! You couldn’t have thought it was being thrown out.” The woman glared at me, hand on her hip.

Oh my god, how embarrassing. “I didn’t realize—I mean, it was sitting here all by itself with no note on it or anything. I thought it was meant for the garbage.”

“The garbage!” the woman shrieked. “I paid six hundred dollars for that! I was waiting for my husband to bring it upstairs! You should keep your paws off things that aren’t yours,” she huffed as she flounced back inside.

The man in the tee-shirt smiled and took a gulp of beer. “Baby, you just took a bite of the B-i-i-i-g Apple.”

“Actually, I think it just bit me.”

About the Author
Leslie Wells left her small Southern town in 1979 for graduate school in Manhattan, after which she got her first job in book publishing. She has edited forty-eight New York Times bestsellers in her over thirty-year career, including thirteen number one New York Times bestsellers. Leslie has worked with numerous internationally known authors, musicians, actors, actresses, television and radio personalities, athletes, and coaches. She lives on Long Island, New York.






Catch the next posts in the Come Dancing Blog Tour

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Wednesday, October 22
Interview at Room with Books
Thursday, October 23
Review at Lusty Penguin Reviews
Monday, October 27
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time
Tuesday, October 28
Spotlight at Just One More Chapter
Thursday, October 30
Review at The Danish Bookaholic

Happy reading,
Michelle

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