Review, Excerpt and Giveaway for Built by Jay Crownover

Posted December 28, 2015 in Giveaway, Review / 13 Comments

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A Jay Crownover blog tour?  Hells to yeahs, baby!  I sought this one out with a vengeance.  I briefly met Jay Crownover earlier this year at RAGT in Cincinnati and my impression of her is that she is an extremely down to Earth, “I’ll talk to anyone”-type of a person, and I adored her fierce honesty.  More importantly, I love her writing style.


I have an excerpt from her upcoming first full-length novel from her new Saints of Denver series right here!

Excerpt from Built by Jay Crownover

I met her at a bar.

She had a beer bottle in her hand even though she looked like she should be sipping champagne out of an expensive flute, and that inexplicably turned me on. She was pretty and looked completely out of place in the no-name bar sitting across from one of my longtime friends who also happened to be her long-lost brother. He was the reason she was here. In that split second that I laid my eyes on her I wanted to be the reason she stayed.

I knew it was rude and that the two of them needed some time together, some time to figure out what they were to each other now that she had blasted into his life unannounced. If I was a better friend I would have left them alone. As it was, I made my way over to the tiny table and sat down. I was covered in sawdust and had drywall mud caked in the hair on my head and on my face, but she didn’t flinch or bat an eyelash when I purposely broke up their party of two and placed myself as close to her as I could without actually touching her.

My buddy Rowdy St. James lifted his eyebrows at me as I stared at her while he introduced us. Sayer Cole. Even her name was elegant and sophisticated sounding. She was an enigma, this pretty woman that seemed like she should be in any place but this bar with the two of us. She’d showed up out of the blue a couple of months ago claiming to be Rowdy’s half-sister, claiming that they shared a father, claiming that all she wanted was to be in his life and have some kind of family of her own. She looked too delicate to be that brave. Came across as way too proper to have said “fuck it all” and picked up her life to move it someplace unknown without being sure of her welcome. She looked like silk, but if my guess was right about her, it was silk wrapped around steel.


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Review, Excerpt and Giveaway for Built by Jay Crownover


Series: Saints of Denver #1
by Jay Crownover
Published by HarperCollins, William Morrow on January 5th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 400
Format: eARC

I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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Sayer Cole and Zeb Fuller couldn’t be more different. She’s country club and fine-dining, he’s cell-block and sawdust. Sayer spends her days in litigation, while Zeb spends his working with his hands. She’s French silk, he’s all denim and flannel.

Zeb’s wanted the stunning blonde since the moment he laid eyes on her. It doesn't matter how many smooth moves he makes, the reserved lawyer seems determinedly oblivious to his interest—either that or she doesn't return it. Sayer is certain the rough, hard, hot-as-hell Zeb could never want someone as closed off and restrained as she is, which is a shame because something tells her he might be the guy to finally melt her icy exterior.

But just as things start to heat up, Zeb is blindsided by a life altering moment from his past. He needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. He can’t risk what’s at stake just because his attraction to Sayer feels all consuming. But as these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, battling together to save a family, the steam created when fire and ice collide can no longer be ignored.

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Jay Crownover’s new series, Saints of Denver, will keep fans of her Marked Men series extremely happy with constant updates on the wonderful inked men from that series and the super women who “healed” them.  But if you haven’t read anything from Crownover’s previous series, you will have absolutely no problem understanding the Saints of Denver world.  We already had our crossover novella, Leveled, earlier this fall.  Now it’s time to dig in with the first full novel, Built (ta, da!)

From the very beginning, I could already tell that the rules for Crownover’s romance have changed.  I can’t/won’t go into details but I’ll give you a vague hint: View Spoiler ».   Sayer is Rowdy’s half-sister and she recently moved to the Denver area to get to know Rowdy.  Since she recently lost her father, she had no other family in Seattle where she was living so she took a huge leap and started over in a new state.  On the day she met Rowdy in a bar to introduce herself, Zeb noticed her talking to his best friend (that would be Rowdy).  Zeb had to find out what she was all about, this pretty little business-dressed woman talking to Rowdy.  So Zeb ambles over and immediately starts hitting on Sayer.  When Sayer ignores Zeb’s advances but instead hires him to renovate her brand new fixer-upper, he is quickly intrigued.

And so is Sayer, because Zeb is nothing like anyone she’s ever dated or really hung around before.  On top of that, she can’t get him out of her mind and she isn’t sleeping.

The main idea or plot point to this romance is that opposites attract.  At least that’s how the story starts.  But it soon turns more complicated than that.  There’s past abusive relationships to hurdle and there are trust issues.  On top of that, how do you learn to trust your own instincts when your instincts are messed up in the first place?

Zeb is a fixer, and he’s bound and determined to fix Sayer.  I loved how smart Zeb was in that he knew exactly what Sayer needed and when she needed it.  When she could stand on her own, he pushed her.  When she needed help, he was there, despite all her pushing him away.

UGH!  I hate when the heroine does that, though.  But there’s a very specific reason why Sayer does it.  At times I thought Zeb was too good for her but in the end, I concluded they were perfect for each other.

One of the things I enjoy the most about Crownover’s books is that each and every one of her books seems like a special little baby to her, each one is personal.  And she’ll share that with her readers in her Author’s Note or her Acknowledgements.  And that little piece of Ms. Crownover’s soul is why I love her writing so much.

About Jay Crownover

Jay Crownover

Jay Crownover is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men and The Point series. Like her characters, she is a big fan of tattoos. She loves music and wishes she could be a rock star, but since she has no aptitude for singing or instrument playing, she'll settle for writing stories with interesting characters that make the reader feel something. She lives in Colorado with her three dogs.


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About Kristin

Kristin has to ensure she gets her minimal requirement of "happily ever after" books in between those books that contain cliffhangers and never-ending story arcs. It's for her family's sake. When not reading, she's homeshooling her 10-year old son, watching cartoons on TV, or taking a nap.

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13 responses to “Review, Excerpt and Giveaway for Built by Jay Crownover

  1. Stephanie

    I would build my own library with floor to ceiling book cases. The only thing, other than books, it would have is a big comfy chair in front of a fireplace.

  2. Heroines who drive away their heroes drive me insane! Like why are you doing it? I will never understand!
    I’ve always wanted to try a book by this author because they sound so perfect for me with their romances and heroes, but OMG the stupid freaking names of these characters are so distracting. I fear that I’ll get too annoyed with them to actually enjoy the book. I should probably get over it!
    Anyways, I’m glad this was another winner for you, Kristin!
    Lovely review! 🙂
    Nick recently posted…Top 10 of 2015 : YA Edition

    • Actually, I thought the same thing on their names BUT there are specific reasons for both Zeb’s and Sayer’s names! And it relates to their backstories – kind of cool, seriously. Zeb’s full name is Zebulon and if you Google it, it will blow you away, and that’s without knowing how he’s named with his sister. “Sayer” is her mother’s maiden name. And there’s a lot more to that.

      Have I at least piqued your interest more? Eh, at least I explained it 😉

  3. Janet W.

    Right now, I would renovate our back deck. I’d like to extend it making it a bigger area and make it screened/glassed in with A/C/Heat.

  4. Tatiana Sanchez

    I would build a nook area for reading. With huge windows so the sun could come through. Or so I could see the rain coming down while I read.