Thursday, October 30, 2014

Fall Reading Challenge 2014: Rock Angel by Jeanne Bogino #FRC2014

This fall, members of the Vise Library are going back to school by participating in a Fall Reading Challange. We have received copies of several books from publishers for honest reviews. We hope that you enjoy these reviews (and books)!

The book for our 90s Music class is Rock Angel by Jeanne Bogino.

About the book:

Shan is young, beautiful, talented, and addicted to heroin in Rock Angel, a novel that follows her meteoric rise to guitar goddess stardom in the 90s. She is discovered in New York by a handsome,arrogant musical genius named Quinn, and sparks fly between them when he hires her as lead guitarist of his band. Although Quinn is accustomed to bedding a different groupie every night, he can t ignore his deepening feelings for his new bandmate. From gritty Greenwich Village clubs to L.A. s Troubadour; gigging and touring the country to the cover of Rolling Stone,Rock Angel is infused with the passionate music and intense sexual chemistry of Shan and Quinn. Shan must work out her personal demons and learn to trust Quinn enough to love him, but still remain true to the music that has always been her salvation.

This book revolves around Shan and Quinn.  Quinn and a couple of his friends are in a band called Quinntessence.  The band needs to find a replacement guitar player and Shan tries out for the job.  Quinn is apprehensive at first about a female being in the band, but after he hears her play and sing he is all in.  He is also very attracted to her, but because of the band he doesn't want to pursue anything other than a friendship with Shan.  Shan feels a connection with Quinn and tries to wait around until he is ready for a relationship.  In the meantime, the band starts gathering quite a following and after a few years, they have a few hits under their belt.  However, some good and then some terrible things happen within the band that jeopardizes if there is even a band to begin with.

Rock Angel dealt with some very heavy topics, but within a fun, enjoyable story.  Drug use and addiction is very prevalent in this story.  One of the main characters, Shan, has issues with drugs throughout the story.  Shan has overcome many things in her life: her mother's death, abuse from her father and then eventually running away from home.   She unfortunately is hooked on drugs and eventually kicks the habit, but is addicted to another drug to wean her off of heroin.  Her drug problem not only harms herself, but has the potential to harm someone else later on.  She has to come to terms with her neediness and need to feel loved.  The content of this topic is heavy, but this book was a lot of fun to read.  The other band members were hilarious and it was fun to read about the band's climbing success.  The music line of the story was interesting as far as the song writing process and the process of the band gaining recognition.  You want the band to succeed and they work hard at their craft.  You also root for Shan and Quinn to get together, but you realize they each have their own demons to deal with in the meantime.  At the end of the book I felt like I had gone through all the terrible and good times with these characters.  There was a teaser for the  second book in this series that will be coming out next year and I can't wait for the next one in the series! :)

Buy the book:
·        Amazon Paperback:

Praise for the book:

“In a show business tale filled with ego clashes, sexual tension, drug addiction, dreams of success and nightmares of stardom, the rarefied world of ambitious musicians is rendered with a relentlessly keen eye and ear.” --Music Connection magazine

“Debut novelist Bogino clearly has a passion and great understanding of Nineties-era rock culture. Shan is a complex and well-written character whose struggles have the reader rooting for her.” --Library Journal

“Bogino portrays an authentic landscape of what it s like to be a rock band in the early 90s. Shan and Quinn both read as fully realized, flawed characters.” --Kirkus Reviews

About the author:

By day, Jeanne Bogino is director of a small but busy library in rural New York. By night, she writes at her western Massachusetts homestead. She has published short horror, fantasy, romance, memoir, and gay fiction, and is a regular contributor at Library Journal, where she was named 2011 s fiction reviewer of the year. An expert on zombie lit and horror films, Jeanne has published articles and appeared on panels devoted to these subjects. Rock Angel is her debut novel with Prashanti Press.

Connect with the author:
·        Facebook:
·        Twitter:
·        Website:
·        Goodreads:

If you want to find out more about the Fall Reading Challenge and the rest of our course schedule, click our student ID above!

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