01 August 2013

Again by Brandy Jeffus - Book Tour, Book Review, Excerpt, Giveaway

Release date: May 15th 2013
Available formats: Paperback & ebook

From recess buddies to high school sweethearts, Eli Stone and Bonnie Jinks were constants in each other's lives. Although young, their relationship had withstood the test of many teenage tribulations. Marriage and a happy ever after were in their future plans.

One alcohol fueled mistake rips them apart. Bonnie ends up on the road with her new boyfriend while Eli joins the military. It seems as if their lives will never intersect again.

A near  fatal accident brings them together and their chemistry is undeniable. But will the pain of the past keep them apart? Can they make their love work again?

I like it primarily because it's short and a reprieve from all those totally emotional new adults I have been reading so far. No broken souls or scarred people - just two high school sweethearts who have drifted apart and found a way back into each other again. 

They were on their 5th year, and they were in high school - I thought they were a pretty tough couple knowing how high school couples just make and break. They have made it through all the trials in their relationship. They were serious with the relationship and already made plans about their future. The both of them were each other's first - and both of them are pretty sure they were each other's forever.  Now, how could something so perfect, so special, so solid suddenly is lost? 

Temptation looms everywhere - especially places which are alcohol-infested. One drunken night, Eli made a mistake. He couldn't face her anymore knowing what he had done. So, he did WHAT HE thought was right and what they needed at that moment - he broke up with her. He broke her heart. 

They were practically with each other forever, I can't imagine how would they handle being apart. Imagine all the routines you have been doing for half-a-decade, all the places you have been through, all the friends you have made together - where are you going to start picking up the pieces? 

Both went separate ways, Bonnie surprised herself and her family when she decides to go on the road with her new boyfriend who's in the band and Eli went into the military. But one fatal accident brought them back together. 

I have always love second chances, Again is no exception to it. We experienced love and heartbreak together with Bonnie and Eli, saw how the both of them grew up, fallen in love with each other, delt with their problems, how they fell apart and finally, how they made it back together. It wasn't an easy journey - there were a lot of road blocks in between. But I guess...

Despite the fact that this type of plot has been used and abused in the literary world for a long time - this book can still break your heart, make you sigh, fall in love and hopeful - that love, no matter how long it takes, no matter how many people comes in between, no matter how far the distance, when you're meant to be together, fate will find a way.


"Where are we going?" Bonnie asked. She dog-eared the book she was reading and sat it on her lap, "This seems far. You know I've got some studying to do."

"We're close. I promise." Eli replied. He looked at his girlfriend. She was beautiful in every way. Every time he saw her, that single thought flew across his mind. Today, her butterscotch hair was up in a ponytail and she was wearing a light blue sundress. He reached over and held her pale hand, rubbing his thumb over each light-pink polished nail. She rolled her eyes playfully and smiled.

Ten minutes later, he pulled his '88 squirrel gray Chevy into a dirt driveway and parked beside a small, but sturdy brick house. The lake stretched out beyond the house.

"Alright, loop me in. Where are we?" Bonnie’s curiosity was peaked as she climbed out of the truck, the door creaking and groaning. She turned around and let loose an admiring sigh.

"This is my grandparents’ old house before they moved into town. Pops said I could come here anytime I wanted; to fish, swim, whatever." Eli pulled out a key and unlocked the front door. "He has someone come out here twice a month to clean and mow. Eventually, this will be mine."

"Oh wait! This is the house we went to one time that summer in elementary school, right?” Eli nodded and she continued, “Well it's very pretty. I didn’t remember it until now. I think having a lakefront property is really neat," Bonnie said, crossing the threshold into the house.

It housed all the comforts of any regular home. The living room was fully furnished, with a bookcase in the corner full of antique hardcover books and knick knacks. A medium-sized flat screen TV hung on the wall opposite of the khaki colored leather couch. A shelf joined the entertainment console that housed a DVD player and cable box. The air smelled like vanilla and clean linen.

Bonnie walked over to the floor-to-ceiling bookcase. It was custom built and massive. Books always drew her like some sort of invisible magnet. While she was browsing, Eli walked into the adjoining kitchen. He powered on the CD player sitting on the kitchen counter. Michael Bolton's soulful voice filled the room singing, "When a Man Loves a Woman."

Through the bar cutout, Eli saw Bonnie freeze as the music started. She threw her head back and laughed. Eli smiled, like he always did when she laughed; it was such a comforting adorable, real laugh. It was infectious, loud and girly all in one.

"Wow, Eli. No you didn't! Oh wow, I don't know if I should laugh or cry!" she exclaimed.

"Will you just hush and dance with me?" Eli grinned and held out his hand. A week earlier he had borrowed the CD from Bonnie's mother, Cindy, after telling her his idea for their anniversary date. He knew that her favorite singer was Bolton and this was her ultimate favorite song.

They danced then, a sweet and slow dance while Bolton crooned on. Bonnie closed her eyes and leaned her head against Eli's chest. She inhaled his faint scent of cologne. He smelled heavenly, just like always.

"You are something else, Eli," she whispered.

Bonnie looked up and kissed him gently. She still couldn't believe that five years had passed. Friends since the fourth grade, he had been her 'bodyguard' on the playground at recess. The first year of middle school saw them drifting away from each other. They weren’t in many classes together their sixth grade year. While Eli became involved in sports, Bonnie showed more interest in the fine arts. Her artistic talents blossomed as Eli’s athletic skills came out.

During the middle of seventh grade they both attended a school dance. Bonnie was dancing with Steven Borman, who would’ve ended up as her boyfriend, when Eli cut in. He confessed his attraction and they had been a couple ever since. Unlike normal teenage romances, they had never split up or taken a break.

"Five years already. We've been through a lot, haven't we?" Bonnie asked. The last five years saw among other events: the divorce of Bonnie's parents, Eli breaking three different bones playing football, and Bonnie's rise to fame as an artist.

"If I died this very instant, I would die a happy guy. Five years isn't anything, compared to us being together a lifetime. I love you so much, Bonnie," Eli whispered breathlessly. He stopped dancing, picked Bonnie up and carried her to the bedroom. He was so nervous and felt his heart beating wildly. This is it, he thought.

Bonnie laughed as Eli carried her. He was always picking her up, always making her feel so protected. So loved and wanted. She found herself always wanting to be near him. She feared that it was something that had become an obsession.

They made it to the bedroom and stopped at the doorway. Bonnie looked inside the room and her breath caught in her throat. She was amazed. On the bed, there were rose petals spelling out the question: Marry me?

Brandy Jeffus has been writing stories since an early age. She would dictate them to her mom who would type them out on a typewriter. 

She is a mother to two precious children and lives in North Texas, but she'll always consider herself an East Texan, hailing from the Rose Capital of the world, Tyler. 


  1. I love the book cover. It’s very ethereal looking. Thanks for the fun giveaway.

  2. Wonderful review & excerpt. Glad you liked it :)

  3. Um, TERRIFIC review!!!! This is one of the most in depth reviews I've read!! Can I steal that pic with Eli's letter to Bonnie? It's BEAUTIFUL!!

    Thank you sooo much for being apart of the tour!!

  4. Please be sure to leave this beautiful review on Amazon and Goodreads! I appreciate it!


    1. Thanks Brandy! :) Always a pleasure!