Thursday, October 10, 2013

Blog Tour Review + Giveaway: I Stand Before You by S.R. Grey

Today, I have the tour for I Stand Before You by S.R. Grey, hosted by ATOMR, on the blog. I'm excited to share my review with you and the tour giveaway.

To see other stops on the tour for reviews, guest posts, and excerpts click here or the tour button above.

I Stand Before You
(Judge Me Not #1)
Author: S.R. Grey
Publication Date: September 3, 2013
Genre: New Adult/Contemporary Romance

When it comes to tattooed bad boys, Chase Gartner is the real deal. Partying, engaging in meaningless sex, getting into fights---Chase indulges in it all during his late teen years, thus firmly solidifying his status as a heartbreakingly gorgeous but way-too-dangerous-to-trust guy in his hometown of Harmony Creek, Ohio. Then, following one fateful night of reckless decisions, Chase's actions finally catch up to him and land him in prison. 

Now, four years have passed and Chase finds himself a free man. He returns to Harmony Creek, ready to pick up the pieces and start rebuilding his shattered life. 

Things are off to a promising start when he meets Kay Stanton, a young woman with a tragic past of her own. Despite a powerful attraction, Chase and Kay are naturally hesitant to become involved. That's why friendship feels like the safest option. But when passions ignite and love blossoms, a relationship that is destined and meant to be can only be resisted for so long. When Chase and Kay finally succumb to their feelings they realize being together feels more right and true than anything they have ever experienced. 

But their love is soon tested. Chase's wild past still haunts and tempts him, and Kay is keeping a secret that could tear them apart. 

I Stand Before You is a journey of hope and forgiveness, coming to terms with the past and moving forward. But mostly it's a story of two damaged people who take a chance, open their hearts, and find true love. 

***Warning: contains graphic sexual situations, drug use, some violence, and profanity***

Recommended for ages 17+


I Stand Before You was a beautiful story about friendship, love and redemption. Kay and Chase are two broken people who find healing and happiness again in one another. They build an incredible friendship that grows into so much more and together they help each other put the pieces back together.

Chase is a genuinely caring and thoughtful guy. He has so much potential but a tragic childhood led him down a road of drugs and violence and ultimately a stint in prison. When he’s released after spending 4 years there, he is determined to turn his life around and be a different person. He goes back to his Grandma’s farm in Harmony Creek and finds himself working for the church doing repairs and odd jobs. What I liked most about him was that he saw the opportunity given to him and he was truly seeking redemption. He never blamed anyone else for the path he chose and all he wants is to use his second chance to be better. He recognizes how difficult it will be to avoid the temptations of his old life but he truly doesn’t want to walk that path again and I admired his strength when he resists the enticement. Of course, I think that his friendship with Kay really helps him stay resolved.

Kay is sweet, beautiful and quiet. She carries around so much guilt from a tragic accident that befell her family four years ago and this eats away at her on a daily basis. It is so sad because I could sense her loneliness and despair. She doesn’t want to allow herself to really live and be happy because she doesn’t think it’s fair. She initially judges Chase because of his past but immediately upon meeting him, she sees the real man inside. There is something about Chase that makes Kay feel alive and makes her want to really live her life for the first time in 4 years.

I absolutely loved the friendship that Kay and Chase built in the beginning of this story. This was definitely not an insta-love relationship but a love that was built from a beautiful friendship. Of course, they are both attracted to each other but have reservations about becoming romantic and instead they become friends, the best of friends in fact. Kay and Chase find solace and comfort in one another and as they really get to know one another and share their most personal moments, they slowly fall in love. I really enjoyed the intimate moments between Kay and Chase and the way Chase protected her and cared for her was so sweet. It is obvious that he learned from his mistakes and you can see how important it is to him to be a productive member of society and to stay clean and straight. I really liked the way he helped Kay through her grief and guilt. Everyday, a little bit of weight was lifted from her shoulders and she had Chase to thank for that.

Aside from fighting their person demons, Kay and Chase both had broken relationships with their families and I enjoyed repairs they attempted to make in these relationships. Chase loves his younger brother Will and was always Will’s hero until he got into drugs and went to prison. This was hard on Will and when Chase is released, his relationship with Will is very strained. Will is now 15 and getting into his own trouble. I see this being a major focus in the second book of the series. Kay has had a non-existent relationship with her parents for the past 4 years and revelations about the tragic accident that tore them apart bring them back together again. However, there is still a lot of healing that needs to be done.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I liked the dual POV and I really felt like the plot flowed well and the writing was excellent. I also liked how real the author was with the characters. Drug addiction is a lifelong battle and the author didn’t shy away from this topic. Chase struggled daily to fight the urges that consumed him for drugs. He almost lost the battle a time or two but his love for Kay was stronger than anything and this helped him resist. Kay never judged him and showed her undying love and support. A drug addict needs something to live for in order to stay clean and move forward. Kay provided this to Chase and he became stronger because of her love.

~IPOD Picks~
"Dark Side" by Kelly Clarkson
"Breathe Me" by Sia
"Shake It Out" by Florence & the Machine


S.R. Grey is the author of Harbour Falls and Willow Point, first and second novels in A Harbour Falls Mystery series. She is also the author of I Stand Before You, first novel in the Judge Me Not series (New Adult/Contemporary Romance).

Ms. Grey resides in western Pennsylvania. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Robert Morris College, as well as an MBA from Duquesne University. 

She is currently working on Wickingham Way, the third installment in A Harbour Falls Mystery series, to be released in January 2014, as well as Never Doubt Me, second novel in the Judge Me Not series.

Other interests include reading, traveling, running, and cheering for her hometown sports teams. 
Author Social Media Links:

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*An eARC was provided to me in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions expressed are my own and unbiased.*


  1. Thank you for taking part in the ISBY blog tour! Love the review!! :)

  2. Yay! I've been wanting to read this one, so I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it!

  3. This sounds really good! I'm glad you liked it because other reviews I read were mixed and I really want to pick this one up! Great review hon

  4. Thank you! Can't wait for the next book to see what will happen with Will.

  5. I did actually really like it. I wasn't sure at first but it definitely surprised me. Thanks!


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