"Emotional, layered, sexy, and deeply satisfying, with stunning prose and a sweeping storyline, REEL is everything that has Kennedy Ryan fans devouring her books.”
-- Lexi Ryan, New York Times bestselling author
One moment in the spotlight.
For months I stood by, an understudy waiting in the wings, preparing for my time to shine.
I never imagined he would watch in the audience that night.
Famous film director.
Fascinating. Talented. Fine.
Before I could catch my breath, everything changed.
I went from backstage Broadway to center stage Hollywood.
From being unknown, to my name, Neevah Saint, on everyone’s lips.
Canon casts me in a star-studded Harlem Renaissance biopic, catapulting me into another stratosphere.
But stars shine brightest in the dead of night.
Forbidden attraction, scandal and circumstances beyond my control jeopardize my dream.
Could this one shot—the role of a lifetime, the love of a lifetime—cost me everything?
Neevah and Canon have chemistry, and a connection, and it's there the first time Canon sees her, even though she has no idea he is in the Broadway theatre the night she finally has a chance to go on for the lead, who is out on vacation.
There's so much here to discuss.
Is it a fabulous romance? Yes.
Is it steamy and do the characters have chemistry? Yes
Is it set in a world that all on it's own gives it interest and depth? Yes
But, that setting is only partly the world you think it is. Hollywood is a part of the story, and it's a big part of it. But it's definitely not all there is.
Woven into the romance, this is also an author who makes a statement and asks her readers to ask questions. The artists listed at the beginning...were they forgotten? Why is it so easy to believe that there is an African American artist out there who was so talented, but no one knows who she was? And, now that we are aware this happened...now what?
Canon's answer is to tell the story, to focus on the art, and to focus on bringing that art to the screen. Kennedy Ryan's answer is to tell the stories about characters who are also people of color, to make it clear that they are people, and they are human, and they are people of color...and that maybe the error is trying to separate this and not embrace it as a whole.
And, that's what these characters make you do. They make you love them as people, even when they are stubborn, or grumpy, or hiding who they are or what challenges they are facing...they are people.
I am not going to say that I understand what it's like to be anything other than what I am as I don't think fully understanding what it is like to be someone else is even possible...but this book makes me think about it, it gave me a glimpse by letting me know these characters, and that makes it all the more interesting as a story.
I enjoyed and recommend this title.
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It’s a guttural command. He bends me over the arm of the couch, and my hands hit the cushion for support, to steady myself. At the sound of the condom tearing, my inner muscles contract, bracing for him. He spreads my cheeks and, slipping his whole hand between my legs, cups the trembling flesh. I’m unprepared for the swipe of his tongue. For the subtle abrasion of his beard scraping the inner skin of my thighs. For the sound of him eating me. I push back against his face, helpless, no shame. Digging my nails into the cushions, I widen my legs to give me more, to take more for myself. He grips my thighs, holding me steady for his devouring mouth until, with a sob that sails over the rooftop, over the city, I contract around his delving tongue. The orgasm hits hard, tightening the muscles in my thighs and calves. With staccato breaths, I bury my face in the couch, biting my lip to the point of pain.
“Canon,” I beg. “Stop teasing me and—”
He shoves in, and the words tumble back down my throat, recessing into the shock of this pleasure.
“Jesus.” Need shreds my voice to ribbons.
He coasts his hand up my back, gently cuffs my neck. Ass in the air, I rise up on my toes, begging for breath, petitioning for more dick. He gives it to me, pushing impossibly deeper.
“So damn good,” he grunts behind me.
I hope I never get over how perfect he feels inside me, like I was molded to his specifications. Shaped for his dimensions. I moan and reach my hand back to pull at one of my cheeks, widening the way for his cock. It feels like he goes where no dick has gone before, deeper, better. Somehow I feel each thrust in my heart. His every touch plays on my emotions, and tears sting my eyes. His hand tightens at my hip, and he slides the other hand up my arm, finds my hand on the couch and laces our fingers together. He sets a frenetic pace that sends the blood singing through my body again. The cushion absorbs my scream as I come, and I punish the soft cotton with clawing nails. With his voice strangled, his fingers fisted in my hair, he comes.
Collapsing against my back, a heavy, happy burden, his breath stilted and warm at my neck, he snakes one muscled arm around my middle, clutching me. After the urgent, feral coupling, it’s a cherishing hold. I cross my arm over his at my waist and tangle our fingers. It’s fragile and sweet, this moment, like flakes of sugar disintegrating on your tongue when you’ve barely had time to taste.
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About Kennedy Ryan
A USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, Kennedy Ryan and her writings have been featured in Chicken Soup for the Soul, USA Today, Entertainment Weekly, Glamour, Cosmo, TIME, O Mag and many others. A RITA® Award winner, Kennedy writes empowered women from all walks of life and centers those who have found themselves perennially on the margins of traditional storytelling.
Her Hoops Series (Long Shot, Block Shot and Hook Shot) and All the King's Men Series (The Kingmaker, The Rebel King and Queen Move) have been optioned for television.
An autism mom, Kennedy co-founded LIFT 4 Autism, an annual charitable initiative, and has appeared on Headline News, Montel Williams, NPR and other media outlets as an advocate for autism families. She is a wife to her lifetime lover and mother to an extraordinary son.
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