About the Book
Title: Defiant Attraction
Author: V.K. Torston
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Erotic Romance
Release Date: November 16th
Dan might be the enemy of my enemy, but I’m not sure that makes him my friend. He’s definitely not my ‘step brother’, no matter what everyone at school says. Honestly, I don’t know what he’s supposed to be to me. Or what he’s becoming…
Fact: for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
In the yearbook, I’ll be Sophia Ramos: Valedictorian. Years of honor roll certificates, AP classes, and lugging around an obnoxiously large cello case are about to finally pay off. If everything goes according to plan, I’ll escape these decaying suburbs for a top university across the country.
The problem? A few years ago, my mom met someone just as broke, just as drunk, and just as impulsive as she is. Approximately five seconds into their relationship, they decided it would be an excellent idea for him—and his son, Dan—to move in with us. (Spoiler alert: it wasn’t).
Now I share a house with none other than Daniel Cole. Even though Dan dropped out two years ago, he’s still the tattooed, bad boy, heartthrob, legend of St. Anthony’s Academy. He and I aren’t supposed to have anything in common.
Living together means war. First, Dan and I were at war with each other. Now, our rivalry is giving way to an unlikely alliance—two opposing sides teaming up against a common enemy: our respective parents.
Which is to say, we’ve been hanging out.
Question: What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object
Here’s the thing: My brain is a complex organ. One hundred billion neurons, each with an average of seven thousand synaptic connections to other neurons. My brain is my ticket out of here.
My heart, by contrast, is a pump. It moves blood around.
I know Dan is off-limits. I know I shouldn’t do something I’ll regret. And I know how much is at stake (my family, my future).
So why can’t I stop thinking about him? Those inscrutable jade eyes. The smile that can say a thousand different things at once. That tattoo curving across his abs…
Even though I know better, I feel that pounding in my chest. And it’s getting harder to ignore.
But if I follow my heart, I can never go back.
Answer: There is no such thing as an immovable object.
4 of 5 Stars
I really like this book. It was strangely wonderful. Sophie and Dan were step-siblings with amazing chemistry. Although I wish I knew more of their backstory prior to coupling up, I totally felt their connection. Bad boy, good girl with parents so selfish, they raised themselves.
The writing was interesting. I can’t explain except I felt like they were in a fish bowl swimming around and I was watching them. Maybe too much was explained to me versus feeling it in the dialogue.
4 stars. It is worth the ride to see Sophie and Dan find love. “Chevy Van” by Sammy Johns was playing when I read the love scene that took place in his car. It had the right vibe for this read. So what this song is more about just a hook up, it still fit that moment. Together they were young and free and determined to be something special.
Read it, not my review. Buy that book.
V.K. Torston’s debut novel, Defiant Attraction comes out on November 16th, so we’re celebrating the release with a character spotlight on bad boy, Daniel Cole.
Hometown: Not too far from where 8 Mile was set.
Favorite Things: Girls, weed, tattoos, his Chevy, his Chevy, and his Chevy.
Least Favorite Things: Authority, confinement, his dad, the suburbs.
Greatest Aspiration: To save enough money to buy his own place.
Biggest Worries: Two way tie between ‘Make a mistake he can’t take back’ and ‘Turn into his father.’
BFD Book Blog: How old were you when you moved in with Sophia? What was your first impression of her?
Daniel Cole: I was seventeen when we moved. We were already behind on our rent when Frank (my dad) met Audrey (Sophie’s mom). The eviction notice pretty much made the decision for them. I found out on a Friday that we needed to be packed and out by Sunday.
I was in my Sophomore year at the time and Sophie was a freshman, so I sort of knew her from school but we’d never talked before. She was all about orchestra and honor roll and whatever, while I spent most of my time getting high in ‘Smoker’s Alley’ behind the science building. When we first started living together, I guess I thought she was uptight. At least, that’s what I told people when they asked. She was just so serious. Focused. I screwed around a lot, and so did pretty much everyone else I knew. Ambition isn’t very common where we’re from.
BFD: Why did you drop out of high school?
DC: Partly because St. A’s is private. When I lost my scholarship (see: screwing around/cutting class), I couldn’t afford it anymore. Our local public school is basically just Prison Jr, so I figured I’d learn more by myself at the library than I would from an overworked, underpaid teacher in an overcrowded class.
Also, Frank and Audrey couldn’t keep up with the rent, and I didn’t like the idea of finding yet another eviction notice. Working more hours at the pizza place kept us all from becoming homeless.
And as you probably guessed by now, I’d already been held back a grade. I guess I felt like I’d just outgrown high school, so I couldn’t stand being there anymore. I’ve never liked being told what to do, where to be, or what to think.
BFD: What was the hardest part about living with Sophie?
DC: Definitely our parents. They were each bad enough on their own, but together, they fed each other’s worst impulses. Audrey could match him drink for drink, shout for shout, smashed plate for smashed plate. They drank hard and fought harder, egging each other on all the way.
But I guess that doesn’t really have very much to do with Sophie. She stayed out of the way, cleaned up after herself, all that Good Housemate stuff. But our crappy little house didn’t offer the sort of privacy two unrelated kids probably needed. Lacy pairs of underwear mixed into my laundry, birth control pills on the bathroom sink, threadbare pajama shirts without a bra at night… It was impossible not to see all the things I wasn’t supposed to see.
BFD: So how many tattoos do you have?
DC: Oh man, lemme think. For professional pieces, eleven. Then I have a bunch of stick n’ pokes I did myself–maybe about twenty of those. I started when I was fourteen with a safety pin and a broken ball-point pen. When I was sixteen I got a fake ID just so I could start getting more intricate stuff at tattoo parlors (I’m not a big drinker), but I still inked myself whenever I was bored or wanted a distraction.
BFD: When did your relationship with Sophie switch from enemies to allies?
DC: It’s hard to pinpoint an exact moment where the change happened. We used to mess with each other a lot, do things to piss each other off, but there was never anything I actually disliked about her (even though I tried really hard to find something). Eventually, all that messing around–it was hard to be anything but All In Good Fun.
But while there wasn’t any real resentment between us, the same can’t be said for our respective parents. We could tell they didn’t like us being friendly, so we weaponized that friendship any way we could.
BFD: When you started actually hanging out with Sophie, did you discover anything about her that surprised you?
DC: Yes. She’s more myself than I am.
About the Author
V.K. Torston is a millennial and ‘cool aunt’ to a brood of nieces and nephews. She was born and raised in San Francisco, attended university in New York City, and aspires to one day live in London. A veteran of the independent music scene, she began writing nonfiction in her late teens. Then she realized that making up stories was way more fun than coming up with endless synonyms for ‘frenetic’ and ‘danceable.’ Her hobbies include drinking too much coffee, making up stupid songs, and ranting about current events. Defiant Attraction is her first novel.