Title: Marley: a carnage novel
Author: Lesley Jones
Series: Carnage Series #3
Release Date: 28th October 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance
From the author of Carnage 1 & 2, comes this follow-up novel. Marley tells the story of Carnage from Marley Layton’s POV. It will give you the missing years. Marley is a companion novel to Carnage 1 & 2 and both of those books should be read first.
Want to know what really happened in that hotel room in Paris?
Want to know if the rumours of Marley, Sean and their sexploits were true?
We got to watch Georgia fall apart but what was Sean going through in those four years they were separated?
Marley will give you the answers but he might just break your heart along the way.
“‘So, they want me to write a book? They want to know about my band, my life, my loves and my losses. But they have no idea what they’re asking for. If I give them what they want, they’ll get so much more than the sex and drugs and the rock and roll they’re expecting. They’ll get the secrets that I’ve kept for so long, they’ll get an insight into the person I really am, or at least was. They think they know my story, they know nothing.
If I do this, if I write honestly and give them the ugly truth, people will get hurt. People that I love, people that have already suffered in the worst possible ways.
Do I do this, or do I walk away? Taking my secrets to the grave.”
Marley is an adult contemporary romance. It contains content suitable only for grownups with an open mind. There are scenes of group sex which include m/f/m a little bit of f/m/m and even some f/f/f/m/m/f/f/f. There is drinking and drug taking involved. A lot of swearing, some Essex slang and some very high emotion. Please don’t complain after reading this book that you weren’t warned.
And yes, of course you’ll need tissues.
Reviewed by Donna Elsegood
I always knew reading Marley was going to be an emotional roller-coaster. Let’s face it, anybody reading this would certainly have read Carnage books one and two. And we all know what happened in them.
This tells the story from Marley Layton’s point of view. Where the rock band Carnage began, what happened in the four years his sister, Georgia, and band mate and childhood friend, Sean McCarthy, were apart. Marley is torn about whether to write a book about his life as a rock and roll star and all that entailed in that lifestyle. He is torn because of all the guilt, the secrets opening up old wounds. Ashley, Marley’s wife, wants him to open up share what will be in the book; however, he is reluctant and unsure as to whether his wife and kids should know all the things that he did back then.
Quote: Ash ~ “Talk to me, Marls. Please, don’t shut me out.”
Marley ~ “It hurts, Ash. It still fucking hurts so much.”
We step back in time as Marley tells us how it all started on the first Carnage tour when he found himself and Maca in a predicament in Paris 1985. Two young lads of eighteen in a band, the girls, drugs and alcohol on offer is a recipe for disaster. Only Maca is supposed to be in love with Marley’s little sixteen year old sister, Georgia. Marley gets it in his drug fuelled mind with the help of others that if they were to marry, the band may no longer continue. So he does a selfish act that he will forever feel guilty about.
Len Layton, Marley’s elder brother and manager, despairs of Marley and Maca’s behaviour through the band’s glory years. The boys constant drug taking, drinking and sleeping with anything that moves in a skirt and in fact, not averse to sharing their women.
The story continues with Marley observing Maca missing Georgia and what seemed to be his self-destruction. It sometimes seemed as if he was accepting that he and George were not getting back together then other times, pining for her. What we see is Marley eventually realising that for all the money and what came with the band’s success meant nothing as he felt so lonely. Eventually Maca and George are back together and things seem to be going well except he just couldn’t shake the feeling that he needed more. What I did realise was through all the goofing around, Marley was finally growing up.
Marley meets Ashley who is a friend and employee of Georgia’s. She completely knocks him sideways and it is definitely love at first sight.
Quote: Marley ~ “Happy Birthday, Ashley. You. Are. Beautiful.”
Ash ~ “You’re Marley Layton.”
Marley ~ “I am.”
Ash ~ “You said I was beautiful.”
Marley ~ “I did.”
Ash ~ “I’m not stupid. That sort of talk won’t get you in my knickers.”
The banter was funny between Marley and Ashley and I loved their interactions and the connection between the two of them. It was fantastic to read about the Layton family again, but all the while I was waiting for the tragic events that changed the Layton family forever. Reading Marley’s point of view of what happened and subsequently after, broke my heart all over again. Lesley Jones can write hot scenes, funny scenes and by god, she really knows how to throw in angst enough to smash your heart to smithereens! I spent best part of my afternoon in tears, and unable to function up to the point that when my husband arrived home, he was concerned to see me so upset.
Of course, there’s a marvellous play-list to accompany this fantastic five star read which is worth listening to it while reading Marley. I would also advise reading in the comfort of your own home with a box of tissues. If you want to know whether Marley wrote and published his book or not, well, as I’m not going to tell you, you’ll just have to read it! What I will say in Lesley’s defence is this. Maybe after having read Carnage, you’re concerned that you’ll be reading the same story once more. Absolutely no worries here because although it kind of is, the viewpoint is completely different. Worth the tears and upset? Don’t doubt it for a second!
I love him, from the instant I set eyes on him when I was just 11 years old I have loved him and nothing will ever change that, he owns me, he owns my heart and he owns my body and no matter how many lies are told, no matter how many people conspire to keep us apart, despite the fame and the distance, we will find a way.
“Georgia Rae, when we made love you used to cry”… He waits for me to sing my bit. I try to swallow down a sob but I just end up singing through it…
“I said I love you like the stars above, I’ll love you till I die”
Carnage, an edgy coming of age love story that breaks all the rules and transcends the decades. Georgia and Sean’s story will stay with you long after you read the final word.
An emotional, smoking hot, gut wrenching read.
When your world, your life and all of your hopes and dreams for the future are ripped out from under you, how do you go on?
Death without dying is not only the most painful kind of death, it’s also the most painful kind of life and I don’t know if I’m strong enough to live it.
I spend my lonely days and nights trying to make sense of what my life has become. Do I have the strength to move forward into the light, or should I just let the darkness take me?
I’m Georgia Rae Layton McCarthy and this is the story of me, just me.
I’m no longer a part of an us, it’s just me.
Lesley was born and grew up in Essex, just outside of London, England but moved with her family to Australia in 2006 and now lives close to the city of Melbourne. As well as writing, Lesley is an avid reader and also enjoys watching a game of football- the round ball version- while sipping on a glass of wine, during her down time. Despite now living in Aus, she is still an Essex girl at heart and remains partial to her waxing, tinting, sculpting and shellac routines. Lesley is a huge fan of social media and can often be found chatting to her readers in her various groups. She is a sucker for a reality TV show, with TOWIE being her obvious favourite.
Why not stalk Lesley? She’d love to hear from you.