I read all five Sinners on Tour books in the month of August, almost back-to-back-to-back. When I sat down to think about my thoughts on these books enough to write a review for each of them, I realized that each review would sound strangely similar - just the names would change. So, I thought I'd do a review for the series as a whole this time around.
Sinners On Tour series, by Olivia Cunning
Published October 1, 2010, April 1, 2011, February 5, 2013, August 6, 2013, November 6, 2012
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Format: e-copy, gifted (Wicked Beat - e-ARC obtained from NetGalley)
Genre: adult contemporary romance/erotica
Series Rating: 4 STARS
The Sinners on Tour series follows the rock band Sinners as they... go on tour. I know - crazy, right? These five guys are your typical heavy metal rock band members - gorgeous, wild, slutty, talented. Yet, while they all might look the same on the outside, they are all very different. And, as each one finds love in each book and we look at each guy both directly and on the periphery, we realize that there's so much more to each of them than what meets the eye.
Sed Lionheart, "The Leader" - lead singer (Rock Hard, Book 2)Out of all the "bad boys" that authors write about, rock stars are my absolute favorites. Reading about guys getting serious about music and living that sort of life is fascinating to me. So, right away, the Sinners on Tour series had a lot going for it.
Brian Sinclair, "The Lover" - lead guitar (Backstage Pass, Book 1)
Trey Mills, "The Player" - rhythm guitar (Double Time, Book 5)
Jace Seymour, 'The Brooder" - bass guitar, piano (Hot Ticket, Book 3)
Eric Sticks, "The Joker" - drums, vocals (Wicked Beat, Book 4)
Each book focuses on a different band member. We see into his past and lean about what got him to where he is today. Some band members had crappy lives with terrible or non-existent families. Others had great lives with supportive loving families. It was nice to see that not every bad boy needs to come from a broken home.
In each book, a band member finds love while on tour. The types of women and the manner in which they meet them are all different. One is a college professor. Another is a law student. A stripper. A sound tech. A guitarist. One thing is consistent - their love affairs never go smoothly. But, would you really expect them to? Each relationship is seen as temporary at first, because really - how permanent can anything be when you're screwing a band member on tour? But, eventually the guy and the girl realize that love is more important than logistics and they find a way to make it work.
My favorite Sinners book was book #3 - Hot Ticket. This was Jace's story. He's the quiet, brooding bassist, and also the newest member of the group. He had a horrid past and has some demons he just can't let go of, not to mention a healthy dose of self-loathing. His story and how he meets and falls in love with Aggie seemed the sweetest to me. Jace comes a long way from cover to cover.
My least favorite Sinners book was book #5 - Double Time. This was Trey's story and the one I had looked forward to the most. Perhaps my expectations were too high. He's carried a torch for Brian for years and has turned into the biggest man whore of them all as a way to combat the unrequited love. I so wanted to see Trey find the love of his life to make his heart feel better. But, I couldn't connect with the story or the characters, and I wasn't a fan of the open relationship he ends up in. Those aren't my thing - it feels too much like cheating and I can't wrap my brain around how anyone would be okay with that.
In each book, you get a very healthy dose of sex. It seemed like there was more sex than story in the last two books (Wicked Beat and Double Time), which was disappointing. Cunning sure knows how to write sex, though. Most of it is super hot. And, the love stories are really sweet too. These rough, scary rockers bare their feelings in believable ways, and it made me fall in love a little bit with each one of them.
There aren't a ton of side characters. There's a few recurring roadies, but we never learn too much about any of them except their soundboard operator, Dave. There's Jon Mallory, their former bass player whom they kicked to the curb because he was doing drugs and unwilling/unable to quit (LOVED that). And then there was Dare. *sigh* Dare Mills is Trey Mills' older brother and the lead guitarist for Exodus End, another metal band (I get the impression that Exodus End is more popular or at least more well known than Sinners). I HEART this guy. I sincerely hope that Cunning's next series is about Exodus End, because I need to read more about Dare Mills.
If you are in the mood for something sexy and sweet and full of awesome rock band action, put on some Ozzy, settle in your favorite chair and give Sinners on Tour a try.