Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Giveaway & Review - "Passion & Pain" by Kathy Petrakis

**Update: Special Promotion Today!! Receive over 40 BONUS gifts to help you reach your dreams simply by ordering your copy of Passion & Pain today!!! 
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Passion & Pain
(Dancers & Divas book 1)
by Kathy Petrakis

YA Romance
Published by by Antartis Publishers
E-Book Released September 17, 2012
Print Format To be Released November 1, 2012
350 Pages

E-Book obtained directly from the author in exchange for an honest review

Excerpt from Goodreads:

"Does passion and desire guarantee success? Can friends really be trusted? Can true love be found beneath lust and deceit?

These are questions street dancer Elena Martinez faces as she struggles to compete against the most talented students at New York’s top Performing Arts High School. Along with her best friend, the cheeky and mischievous Sebastien Duval, they are determined to make center stage.

But the singing diva Letitia has other plans. Beautiful, talented and popular, her desire for revenge could ruin everything for Elena and Sebastien. Now, they must fight against prejudice, treachery and deceit as Letitia sets out to destroy Elena’s friendships, her romance, her dignity and her dreams. Can Elena win the battle for true love, happiness and success?"

Go to Amazon to get your copy of Passion & Pain!

About the Author:

Kathy Petrakis was born and raised in Sydney Australia by Greek immigrant parents. She always had a passion for the performing arts - dancing, acting and singing but they were hobbies giving way to a traditional professional career in banking. Before this book, her writing was used to entertain friends with her unusual, and often disastrous travel adventures from around the world.
By the hand of fate, Passion and Pain and Bittersweet were born while unemployed and living in London, heaven for lovers of the performing arts. At the time of publication of Passion and Pain, she was still living in London with plans to prepare for the launch of the sequel in either Sydney or New York.

Connect with Kathy:


Praise for Passion & Pain:

*** The perfect package – FAME meets GOSSIP GIRL wrapped with a touch of GLEE 

*** A compulsive tale of auditions, performances, friendship, first love and life’s lessons not yet learned . . . both uplifting and tragic – completely captivating

***Entertaining, engaging drama that covers it all – determination, disappointment, success, love, lust, betrayal, heartbreak and forgiveness.oth uplifting and tragic – completely captivating

My Review:
"Fame meets Gossip Girl wrapped with a touch of Glee" <-- PERFECT way to describe this book - except I would have to add in a little Center Stage (the movie) and Step Up 2 as well!!
This was such a fun read! If you enjoy the arts, this is definitely a book to read. There's drama, passion, anger, performance, stress... I mean it's got it all... even a mini sexual scene (nothing on the Rated X scale though).

There are so many different individual struggles and stories. You end up getting connected with several different highly evolved characters - My favorites being Anya and Darius. Of course I love Seb too! He's absolutely previous and really reminds me of Charlie from Center Stage. The main female character, Elena, is really likable. She's such a sweet soul but good grief is she dense when it comes to seeing what's in front of her. I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to jump through the book several times and knock her in the head!

There was so much going on in this book it was like it's own mini tv drama regarding the arts... at first, it felt like I was reading a new version of Step Up 2... LOVE... then it merged into a little Glee... then it merged with Center Stage... then in the midst of it all was the Gossip Girl...
The characters were really easy to like - or hate with regards to Letitia >_<   There were really serious issues in this book that were addressed as well = bullying, stress, passion, rape, overcoming painful pasts, how individuals can be misjudged by looks, sex & losing virginity, peer pressure, drugs... I mean, seriously - this book could become the next big performing arts show on tv! :) Instead of focusing on glee club, it would be more focused on dance. I like that idea!

I really didn't want to stop reading this story. I finished it in about 5 hours total. I'd highly recommend this story to individuals who enjoy the world of performing arts - especially dance - and the struggle that goes into "making it."
There will be a second book in this series and I wish I had it NOW!! I want to know what's going to happen their senior year in school! I want to know how everyone's story continues! It's hard to remind myself that I'll have to be patient ^_^

My Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars

Cover Rating:  3 Stars
      I liked the cover but if I was to pass this in the store, I don't know if I would've picked it up or not?

Main Characters: 5 Stars

Plot:  4 Stars

Climax: 4 Stars

Ending:  5 Stars

A Few Interview Questions with Kathy Petrakis:

  • What gave you the idea for Passion & Pain? Obviously you love the performing arts but what was the determining factor for you to take on the compilation of a novel?
    • I think I've had this story in my head a long time. Many of the experiences the characters had, were experiences I myself had as a teenager. Combined with my love for the performing arts, it was just meant to happen and it was something I've wanted to do for a long time. It also coincided with a job loss so I suddenly had this extra time available to me which I dedicated to writing. I've never looked back! Some call it destiny.

  • When will book 2 be coming out? Will we see the same supporting characters from book 1 (Roni, Anya, Darius, Letitia, etc)?
    • Book 2 has already been written in its first draft and is a continuation of Book 1 as the characters go through junior and senior year. This means there will be many of the same characters but some will be leaving and others will be introduced. Originally it was all meant to be one book but it got too big! I would also love reader feedback as to what they would like to see happen in the second book, so feel free to share your thoughts  - you can contact me at kathy<dot>petrakis<at>gmail.com or on Goodreads

  • If you could put yourself in the shoes of any of your characters, who would it be and why?
    • That's a tough one. I like each of my characters for different reasons. I love Seb because he's funny and cute. I like Elena because she has a big heart but is also so determined and multi-talented. I love Veronika because she is witty, Anya because she is so talented and caring and Darius because he is tough yet vulnerable. And yet, it wouldn't be so bad to be Letitia - extremely talented, attractive and self-centered - not the best person to be friends with but the person that can resist most challenges that come her way simply because she is not so vulnerable or caring. It's an interesting dilemma - would you rather be selfish, tough and successful, or generous, vulnerable and successful?

  • Any take home messages for readers or anything else you'd like to add? You have the floor :)
    • I believe there are two things important to take from the book, apart from an enjoyable read
      • a) Wanting to be loved is not wrong. However, being able to differentiate between genuine love and selfish love is important. It's also always important to remember your value and the way you deserve to be treated, no matter how painful the choice may be.
      • b) Showing passion and desire to achieve something - whether it's dancing, singing or anything else you want to succeed in, is fantastic! Hard work and dedication is a good quality. However, sometimes, the desire to achieve means we make poor decisions as a person - betrayal of a friend, making friends with the wrong people, drinking excessively to impress others or taking advantage of people. It's always important to keep a clear picture in your head, not only of your goals, but also of who you want to be as a person.

                     Happy reading!!!

In the spirit of building some excitement up to the November 6th Paperback Launch, Kathy is giving away 1 Signed Paperback Copy of Passion & Pain! Enter below for your chance to win! The Winner will be contacted via email and has 48 hours to claim the prize - if I don't hear back from you, we'll have to select a new winner.

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  1. Thank you for this absolutely amazing giveaway!!! :D (Angie Edwards)


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