I Want You to Want Me by Erika Kelly #Review

I Want You to Want Me by Erika Kelly #Review
I Want You to Want Me

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Series: #2 Rockstar Romance
Genres: Rock Band Romance
Published by Berkley
Released on July 7, 2015
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher

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I really enjoyed the first book in this series. It was chock-full of the music, the lifestyle, and a tough-fought feelsy romance. I was eager to see if this would be a repeat experience for me as the focus shifted to another member of the band and was the heroine’s brother from the last book. Yes, this book definitely went there again though the situation changed and the characters’ backgrounds were different. However, a lot was the same. I wasn’t sure if I had it in me for another turmoil-filled romance, but the author’s storytelling and ability to engage me helped power me through the angsty stuff. I really wanted this pair to break through the bonds their pasts had formed around them and get free and happy.

So yes, this is the second book in the series and it is a continuation story of sorts. There are different players in the limelight and the heroine is new as is most of the plot, but everyone else and their situations carry over from the last book. I was happy see the first couple, Jonny and Emmy, get some significant page time and their story continue on in the background.

Violet Davis thinks she’s the ice queen and isn’t capable of feelings or connecting with people because she grew up in foster care and some worker back when she was six predicted this for her. She does take satisfaction in fixing people so she has a unique career. She’s a people minder when it comes to being hired to help people clean up their lives of substance abuse and help set them on solid footing. She generally helps high-profile people so her presence has to be kept discreet so she assumes roles to be in those people’s lives. Now, her friend Em wants her to come work her magic on her brother’s rock band. The guys are on their first big tour and getting heavily into the temptations of the rock god scene. They can’t afford to self-destruct their big chance. Violet is leery of working with musicians, but can’t say no to a friend. Distance is the key even though for the first time in her life she is tempted to cross the professional line and break her own rules. Derek is everything dangerous and wrong, but he makes her feel, lordy, does he make her feel.

Derek Valencia is the bass player for Blue Fire and the default leader of his band. There is a lot riding on them successfully making it through this tour, but aside from Slater, the other three are out of control and then there is his dad, the famous Eddie Valencia publicly putting down Derek and predicting failure. What he does not need is a babysitter, but if that will keep them on their tour and under contract then he will go with it. Violet is nothing like the usual women in his life and her very difference is what gets his attention, but it is her caring that starts him having feelings and wanting something more. Too bad Violet doesn’t seem to want him as much as he wants her. He is determined and he will stick with her until she gives in, but how long can he leave his heart open and just how many rejections can he take?

Alright, so yes, this one had some tough moments. The story is one of personal growth and triumph as well as a romance. Derek’s dad has put him down all his life no matter how hard Derek tried just to get the man to love him and be proud of him. This left scars so that even though he’s talented and people say so, he doesn’t believe it. And worse, the only female he trusts with his heart is what he feels for his sister. He chooses to be with women who know the score. Violet crashes into his world and changes everything.

Now Violet has her own scarring that leaves her with relationship problems. She truly believes that she is incapable of feelings like love both receiving it and giving it. She overheard one remark by a caseworker to someone else when she was a kid and took it as gospel truth- makes a good point that we all need to watch what we say about kids that they can take to heart. She focuses on being really good at her job and her dream of her wildflower farm that will be her home if she can earn the money to buy it. It’s like her lodestone and the most important thing in her life. Violet’s way of pushing people away is to freeze them out. She was too freaked by her own issues to be ready to reciprocate what Derek was offering. So these two had bad timing and growing pains, big time. It was tough to read and trust me I had the urge to shake a couple of people until they came to their senses.

The romance was tempestuous because of their issues. There was this point in the middle of the book when all was easy, light, fun and loving. I took it for the breather it was because they had a lot unresolved still at that point. Whew! Derek is a hottie and he was totally zeroed in on Violet. He thawed out her ice and made her come a live. This guy was so impressive as he worked to conquer his feelings of inadequacy about his dad and stayed strong through the tough facade that Violet gave him. Yes, he stumbled a few times, but more times than not he was one impressive man and musician. I got Violet, I really did, but she drove me nuts the way she worked so hard to destroy her own chance at happiness. I guess its the tough-fought ones that make that romantic ending feel like a treasure.

In summary, it wrung me out, but left me wanting more. It was passionate, heartwrenching, tender, and euphoric, and a definite must-read for rocker romance lovers.

My thanks to Penguin Group for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.


  1. I do love those heart wrenching romances, and I have been in the mood for a good rocker romance series, so I just bought the first book, you made both books sounds amazing!! Great review, hope you are enjoying your summer so far.

    1. Hey Renee! These do have the feelsies, but the music and rocker world are very present. Hope you like them.

      Summer is great! I’m enjoy Utah. 🙂

  2. She really is good at putting you through the wringer. When things were all light there for a bit I kept looking at the remaining page count and going dag it! She’s about to make me hurt! lol I’m glad you enjoyed them too 😀

        1. Haha! Oh you know it! This pair had me groaning and grumbling something awful. I got so tired of her ‘I can’t feel or love’ routine and kept telling her to quit screwing around with her big chance. 😉

  3. Ha! Just saw this one Annas blog:) It’s funny you guys have about the same ideas with this book. I’ve never read a rockstar romance but it sounds intriguing to me. Is there a lot of cheating and drug use in this one?

    1. No cheating and a side character is struggling with the drugs (pretty much why they needed her help). Haha! yes, Anna and I read many of the same books and our opinions line up quite often.

  4. That’s what I love about series like these, the same feel and themes, but a slightly different situation due to the main character being someone else. Oh and the cameo appearances of previous main characters, i really enjoy that too. It must have been fun to see the story of the first couple continue on the background, it’s great when an author can pull that off.
    It certainly sounds like there are some tough moments. It must be hard for Derek to want Violet but get rejected. I wonder how the whole plot with her working for the band and then falling in love with one fo them works out. The romance sounds really well done and worth the fight. Great review!

  5. I have this book for review too, but I haven’t read the first book. It sounds like I should. I’m glad that even though this was an angst romance, the author was able to engage you. I enjoy a hard fought romance, but get frustrated when a character gets in the way of their own happiness. I’m glad that Derek was able to thaw out his ice queen! He sounds yummy 🙂 Awesome Review Sophia!

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

    1. Oh yes, they both did a good job of sabotaging their own romance, but fortunately pulled it through to make us all happy. I like this author’s writing.

      Hmm, I think you would like it better if you read the first one, but with your intuitive reading skills you could probably get by, Lindy.

  6. Hmmm, tempestuous romance, eh? That can be a good or bad thing 😀 I’ve not heard of this one but I like the sound of it! I don’t read nearly enough books that heavily feature music or bands. I am a bit interested so I will look out for this one 🙂 Fantastic review, Sophia!

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    1. Oh cool! Glad I could point you toward a possible good read. Grab the first one which starts off many of the plot threads that carry over to this one.