Friday, June 21, 2019

Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: IMPOSSIBLE THINGS by Beth Bolden (Star Shadow #2)

Impossible Things
(Star Shadow series #2)
Author: Beth Bolden
Publisher: Beth Bolden Books
Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood Designs
Genre/s: Contemporary MM Romance. Friends to lovers. Slow burn. Rock star romance.
Heat Rating:  4 flames
Length: 80,000 words
Release Date: June 10, 2019

Buy Links - Available on Kindle Unlimited

It’s never the end . . . it’s only the beginning.


For the last ten years, Benji and Diego have not only been members of Star Shadow, one of the biggest boy bands in the world, but best friends. During the years of fame and fortune they've also held a front row seat to the callous cruelty of the music industry. As much as they've both wanted more from their relationship, it never felt worth it to trade what they have for something hot, heady and completely impossible.

But is it really?

After welcoming back their long lost member and making it through their reunion tour with a new lease on fame, life suddenly seems too short to continue settling for safety.

Benji and Diego could have everything they’ve ever wanted, but can they figure out how to choose each other? Despite every impossible thing the world intends to throw at them?

It’s never the end . . . it’s only the beginning.


“Are you okay?”
Benji glanced up and of course it was Diego. Of course it would be him who’d know that something was wrong.
He cleared his throat, his tongue suddenly thick in his mouth. The panic hadn’t faded entirely yet, and he felt too close to the edge still, but Diego reached out and cupped his shoulder with his hand. The fear retreated a little more.
If he couldn’t be honest with Diego, could he be honest with anyone?
“I was just thinking of the last bow, the one we took when we didn’t know it was the last one,” Benji admitted.
After a moment of hesitation—which Benji understood entirely, their friendship sometimes seemed like a walk through a minefield—Diego pulled him into a hug. His hands hovered over Diego’s shoulders before giving in and gripping him tightly.
They stood there together for a long moment, holding on to each other. Benji let his head fall down to Diego’s shoulder, but otherwise they didn’t move.
“It was hard, because we didn’t know it was over, but it was over,” Diego finally said, the sound of the stagehands beginning to take down the stage around them punctuating his words. “But it turns out that it’s not really over after all.”
Benji didn’t want to say that some mornings he woke up and for a split second he still thought it was over. That he sometimes had to remind himself that he wasn’t on his own again, that he wasn’t struggling with a career that didn’t fit quite right, that he didn’t miss his boys so much he ached, that he hadn’t ultimately crashed and burned.
“It’s hard to forget, sometimes,” he said, even though he hadn’t really meant to say anything at all.
Diego pulled back, and even in the dim of backstage, Benji could see the empathy in his eyes. “You know, you’re more than your achievements,” Diego pointed out softly.
It wasn’t like he hadn’t been told that before, but something about the earnest belief in Diego’s voice made him want to believe this time. The problem was knowing, with crystal clear clarity, what he was capable of. And never being able to settle for less than that, without that ugly voice yelling in his ear that he’d failed again.
“I know.” Benji’s smile was wry. “Theoretically.” Reluctantly, he let go of Diego. Too long holding him, too long of them holding each other, and he was going to want even more than he already did.
Diego laughed. “Yeah, that’s the whole problem. Theoretically. You’re rich and famous. You don’t need to work so hard all the damn time. You’ve made it, Benji.”
All theoretically true.
If only that voice would shut the f*ck up sometimes.
“Yeah,” Benji said, rolling his eyes. “I know.” He paused. He and Diego had been practically inseparable this tour, but it was ending tonight, and they had two weeks in LA before the recording sessions on the new album started. Even though they’d spent so much time together already, the idea of a two-week break from Diego hurt. It had never hurt before. Somehow, Benji knew, they’d crossed that point of no return. Friendship alone would never be enough again. Had it been the kiss? He could barely remember it, it had been so short and brief. Nothing like he’d always imagined. He’d wanted a do-over for the last six months, but maybe they needed more privacy for that.
“Hey,” he started again hesitantly, “we should get together when we get back to LA.”
Diego was leading the way back to the green room and didn’t look at Benji. “I’m not sure. I’ll probably be busy with Ana.”
Benji knew how much he loved his daughter, and how much he’d missed her on this tour, even though his ex, Vicky, had brought her to as many tour stops as she could. So he didn’t know what to say to that. Even though it was probably true, it was hard not to see it as a brush-off. Diego was good with people; he wouldn’t give a brush-off that felt like one. He’d make it sound legit, all to spare Benji’s feelings.
The question was why was he brushing him off, right after hugging and reassuring him? Benji didn’t know, and didn’t know how to bring it up, because they were walking into the green room, and Max was spraying the walls with a bottle of sparkling apple juice and Leo and Caleb were dancing to the Black Eyed Peas, their favorite post-show soundtrack.

Carra's Review

After reading Terrible Things, the first book in this series, it was impossible not to want to hear Benji and Diego’s story next (see what I did there?).  While you could read this one on its own, I would strongly recommend reading these stories in order to get the background of the band and see what they went through with Leo and Caleb’s story.

I loved Diego, and it was his character with whom I most identified.  I understood his need for a calm, quiet life outside the band and his desire for privacy—particularly where his family was concerned.  Benji…I found him to be a bit frustrating.  He’s very driven, though at times it can make it seem like he’s chasing popularity.  It’s clear though that he wants to be known for his music, not who he’s with.

Together, the two of them are sizzling hot; they definitely have the physical chemistry.  They also have the fact that they’ve been best friends for ten years going for them.  Where they clash is with the attention they get outside of Star Shadow—Diego is perfectly happy staying out of the spotlight and just enjoying his life and family, while Benji wants to make sure he’s front and center in people’s minds—even to the point of seeming jealous of Leo and Caleb.

One character I truly disliked was Benji’s agent/manager, Jay.  The way he treats the guys’ lives as a popularity contest is abhorrent to me, especially since it just feeds into Benji’s personal perceptions of himself and his friends.  Jay was beyond manipulative, and I just wanted to throttle him…and berate Benji for not just getting rid of the guy.

Overall Impossible Things was a solid 4-star read for me, and I’m definitely interested to see what’s going on with the final member of the band, Max, and Leo’s brother Felix…so I can’t wait for the next book!  This story is for readers 18+ for adult language and sexual content. 

About the Author

A lifelong Oregonian, Beth Bolden has just recently moved to North Carolina with her supportive husband. She still believes in Keeping Portland Weird, and intends to start a chapter of Keeping Durham Weird.

Beth has been writing practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first foray into novel writing, titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasn’t a bestseller, but hope springs eternal. She’s published eleven novels and four short stories, with Impossible Things, the next book of the Star Shadow series, releasing in June 2019.


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