Saturday, July 29, 2017

Release Blitz: Losing My Religion by A.S. Tucker (Reviews+Giveaway)

Title: Losing My Religion
Author: A.S. Tucker
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: July 27, 2017
Jaden Barker is a good boy.
For as long as he can remember, he’s been preparing for the day he’ll be called as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He’s ready. He’s more than willing. And he can’t wait to spend the next two years serving the Lord and his church. But when a new proclamation from the church is announced, it leaves him questioning everything.
Quinn Owens is trouble with a capital T.
An aspiring actor living in the bowels of Los Angeles, he’s fought long and hard to get where he is, and he’s not willing to give it up for anything. Working for a homophobic boss presents quite a challenge when you’re a gay man, but Quinn knows losing this job means losing his dream. 
Jaden is lost and confused.
Quinn won’t let anything stand in his way.
But when Jaden finds himself living downstairs from the enticing Quinn, neither are prepared for what happens next.
Will Jaden be able to resist Quinn’s charms and remain a devoted Mormon missionary? Or will he fall, finding himself face to face with losing his religion?

5 Stars from Millsy Loves Books - “I loved this read with passion i'll be honest i really wasn't expecting it to effect me as much as it did. The words the story the emotions weather good or bad left me not being able to put this book down. I would highly recommend this read.”

5 Stars from Konny on Goodreads - “Losing My Religion is an intense emotional read. I give 5 stars, thank you AS Tucker!”

5 Stars from Amo & Sarah’s Book Corner - “A very different love story, that is beautifully written.”

As I step into the room, I drop my suitcase on the floor, my duffel bag sliding off my shoulder and falling on top of it. Six bunk beds are crowded into the tiny space, each bed made neatly with a thin comforter stretched tautly across the mattress. It reminds of the dorm rooms I’ve seen in movies and TV shows throughout the years. Except, instead of posters of half-naked women and sports stars adorning the walls, there are pictures of Jesus Christ. Instead of math books and dirty laundry strewed about, there are scriptures and pamphlets about the church. 

So, yeah, it’s just like a dorm room—if the dorm room were in a parallel universe where teenage boys read the Bible and The Book of Mormon instead of play video games and drink beer. 

Welcome to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah. 
Elder Scott, the leader of the district I’ve been assigned to, points to the bottom bunk on the left side of the room, indicating I should put my stuff there. All the missionaries in this district of the MTC are going to be serving in the California Los Angeles mission or somewhere in the vicinity. We’re split by the area we’ll be serving in, by the language we’ll be speaking, and, of course, by sex. The sister missionaries are housed in a separate part of the MTC with clear guidelines of what will happen if those borders are breached after hours. 

I pick up my bag and toss it onto the bed before leaning over to grab my heavier suitcase with both hands. Elder Scott bends over to help, and together, we lift the monstrosity onto the bunk. 

“You can hang your suits in the closet,” he says, pointing to a tiny accordion door next to the beds on the right. “Each of you has one drawer in the dresser. Yours will be one up from the bottom. Go ahead and get your things unpacked. I’m going to head to Elder Burke’s class and see if I can borrow Elder Daniels. He’ll be your companion while you’re here.” 

Without another word, Elder Scott turns and exits the room, leaving me in the silent, foreign room by myself. An all-too recognizable pang fills my chest as I look around, and once again, I’m left wondering if I’ve made the right choice. 

It's just nerves, my inner Jiminy reminds me, trying to soothe my budding panic. 

Or it’s the fact that you’re a total fraud, and you have no business being here, his less than delightful counterpart retorts. I shake my head as I sit down on the edge of the bed, grateful for the moment alone. 

It might be the last one I get for the next two years. Once your companion is assigned, the two of you stick together like the pages of a dirty magazine. 

I chuckle softly at my poor attempt at a joke, but then guilt immediately sets in at the thought, considering my surroundings. I can almost feel Jesus’s disapproving eyes boring into me. So, instead of lifting my head to meet his gaze, I unzip my suitcase and begin to unpack my things.

5 Stars

I don't quite know where to begin with this review. This was a phenomenal story and I absolutely loved it, and I'm just not sure I have the words in me to do justice to the story.

I absolutely loved Jaden and Quinn. I wanted to wrap both of them up and protect them from the cruelty and bigotry they were forced to face, but I especially felt for Jaden. To be told your whole life that the way you feel is wrong and a sin and to fear not only losing your friends and family, but losing your place in the church and perhaps, God, as well, has to be frightening. When you grow up knowing what your future holds, and it's all planned out for you, what do you do when you meet the love of your life and he doesn't fit into the world you live in?

This was such an interesting story. Is it original? Not so much, I've read a few other books on the subject matter, but this is definitely one of, if not the best, I've read so far. The author drew me in and I literally could not put this book down. I had to see what the future held for Jaden and Quinn. I had to know if Jaden would choose the church or Quinn.

This is a slow burn. I loved that the development of Quinn and Jaden's relationship was so gradual and really, it had to be to make the story realistic. They spend a lot of time getting to know each other and in turn, we really get to know them. The chemistry between Quinn and Jaden was off the charts amazing.

The story is well-written and paced well. Not only did I not want to put this book down, I didn't want it to end either. I absolutely adored Quinn and Jaden and though I loved the ending, I wasn't ready to let them go yet. I not only loved Quinn and Jaden, but I absolutely adored Judy K!! She was a real hoot and a great support system and cheerleader for these young men, but she was especially good to Quinn and he desperately needed that.

I can't say enough how much I loved this book. It left me with a huge book hangover and wanting so much more, but in a good way. Extremely enjoyable and highly recommendable!!

**copy provided by the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review**

5 Stars!!!

Quinn Owens is an aspiring actor trying to catch his lucky break in LA, although things have been anything but lucky lately for him. He's out and proud, for the most part, although he needs to hide his sexuality on one of his jobs because of his homophobic boss. Jaden Barker is just starting his 2-year service as a missionary for the Mormon church, but after finding out about a new ordinance in the church, he's begun questioning some of the things he'd been told since he was a kid. He can't resist being attracted to Quinn when he meets him, and the attraction is more than mutual, but Jaden is afraid of losing his family and his religion if they're discovered. He will need to decide which is more important to him, love or faith.

I loved Quinn, he was so charming and sweet and patient and I simply couldn't get enough of how perfect he was for Jaden. I loved Jaden, too, and surprisingly, even when he sort of messed up, I was never annoyed at him. He was young and innocent and kind of lost about what he should do, so his behavior was understandable. I have to thank the author for the fact that when it was time to make things right, the character who had to was the one to make amends. I adored how naturally their relationship progressed and how obvious it was that the feelings between Quinn and Jaden were deepening.

I absolutely loved Judy K and Jaden's dad. They were a fantastic support system to the boys. I hated Rick, Quinn's boss, and I just hope he'd gotten his comeuppance. He deserved it.

Losing My Religion was a delightful read, well-written, emotional, passionate, sweet, romantic and angsty. I love books that make me feel and cry and this one did, there's a scene near the end for which you'll likely need tissues, so don't forget to stock up on those. ;)

Very recommendable!!!

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***

5 Stars!

I have to say I really loved this story. Unfortunately, this review is a hard one to write because I'm not sure how to put into words what I felt for both Jaden and Quinn who won my heart from almost the first page. Throughout the entire story I, found myself rooting for them to find their happy ending, to get away from the hate and fears they both had to face on a daily basis. Fortunately, however, while I expected a ton of angst and drama, this particular story had a lot more to offer than that. It was funny and sweet, sexy and intense. There was angst and drama but a lot of light-hearted stuff as well.

Jaden was a great character. I loved the way he looked at life, religion and the world. I loved how he questioned things and didn't just believe what he was told without thinking things through. I'm not a fan of people who act like robots or puppets. That just follow someone's leadership whether they deserve it or not. I have no problem with religion but I dislike characters to just take things at face value because that's what's expected of them. Jaden was not at all like that.

Quinn was fun and at the core, sweet. He came off as cocky sometimes but never ever did he come off as a jerk. He didn't always have himself together but he was endearing nonetheless and his patience and understanding were great characteristics. I adored him and the way he was with Jaden and his neighbor. I wished he'd have had an easier time in LA but that was very realistic.

While this book deals with religious themes, it isn't overbearing or preaching in any way. I didn't find myself getting annoyed by the constant religious overtones like I have with other books that share this theme. We get Jaden's view of his life in the Mormon church and what's expected of him on his mission but most of the time it's focusing more on Jaden gong a way to be his true self and still keeping the religious fundamentals he's known his entire life. He's discovering how to maintain his relationship with God and be the man he knows he is.

I also loved the pacing of the relationship between Jaden and Quinn. I found the fact that things progressed slowly yet consistently made it feel very natural and realistic. They became friends before anything else and even though it was frowned upon it was practically inevitable for them. They had great chemistry that could be felt from their first encounter and throughout each and every interaction they had.

I definitely recommend Losing My Religion. It's well written, well executed and draws you into the story quite easily. I'll for sure be looking for more books by this author in the future.

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***

A military brat growing up, A.S. Tucker now resides in Utah with her loving husband. When not writing, you'll find her reading, binge watching Netflix, or drinking wine. Her three favorite things are animals, coffee, and Harry Potter, not necessarily in that order. She is the author of three other novels, published under a different pen name. She loves hearing from her readers, so please drop her a line!

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