Friday, May 23, 2014

*BLOG TOUR* ALL LINED UP by Cora Carmack: Review + Character Interview + Giveaway!

All Lined Up by Cora Carmack
Genre: New Adult Contemporary
Publication Date: May 13th, 2014

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Cora Carmack follows up her trio of hits—Losing It, Faking It, and Finding It—with this thrilling first novel in an explosive series bursting with the Texas flavor, edge, and steamy romance of Friday Night Lights.

In Texas, two things are cherished above all else—football and gossip. My life has always been ruled by both.

Dallas Cole loathes football. That's what happens when you spend your whole childhood coming in second to a sport. College is her time to step out of the bleachers, and put the playing field (and the players) in her past.

But life doesn't always go as planned. As if going to the same college as her football star ex wasn’t bad enough, her father, a Texas high school coaching phenom, has decided to make the jump to college ball… as the new head coach at Rusk University. Dallas finds herself in the shadows of her father and football all over again.

Carson McClain is determined to go from second-string quarterback to the starting line-up. He needs the scholarship and the future that football provides. But when a beautiful redhead literally falls into his life, his focus is more than tested. It's obliterated.

Dallas doesn't know Carson is on the team. Carson doesn't know that Dallas is his new coach's daughter.

And neither of them know how to walk away from the attraction they feel.

*** A Character Interview with Dallas Cole ***

Hi Dallas! Welcome to the blog, and thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me today! I have to tell you, I really connected with you throughout this book...I even took the quiz (HERE!). I’m definitely a Dallas. haha.

You literally fell upon Carson McClain at one of your first college parties….what were your first thoughts or impressions of him?

It was something along the lines of, "Oh God, here we go again." Followed by, "Oh God, he's gorgeous." Followed by "Oh God, he's going to try to catch me." Followed by, "Oh God, he's an idiot." Followed by, "Oh God, he's REALLY gorgeous."

What I love about your story is that it really is more than a love story of boy meets girl. It’s also a story about the love between a father and daughter. Can you tell the readers a little about your relationship with your dad? OR Can you share one of your favorite memories with your dad?

Oh gosh. My Dad and I are very alike. We're both stubborn and competitive and we worry a lot. It is that worry that is always at the center of our issues. He worries about me being able to support myself... about my uncertain artistic future. I worry about failure, about settling for the safe things instead of chasing my dreams. I worry about how settling would affect me, whether it would break me. We just have different ideas about what is best for me. Neither of us is particularly good at being affectionate either. We're super awkward in any situation concerning emotions. I remember one time he hugged me in front of tons of people when I won an award in Middle School, and it was probably the single most awkward moment of my tween years (and that's saying something).

I’ve heard all about what an amazing dancer you are….If you had to chose just one song to perform to, what would it be?

Oh man, you can't ask me that! I always have no fewer than four songs running through my mind at any given time. Lately I've been loving "Falling or Flying" by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals - I've been playing a lot with the juxtaposition of "falling" and "flying" in my dance, and this song is kind of perfect for that.

What was one of the wildest “Stella’s (Suck-it-up-you-prude) Stamp of Approvals” that you were compelled to follow through on?

So, there's this religious group (some people would say it's a cult...and by "some people" I mean "everyone") that has this big compound about twenty miles outside of our town, and it's sort of a rite of passage at our high school for graduating seniors to visit the compound in the middle of the night and steal an informational pamphlet about the cult. As you can imagine, Stella was ALL about this, and wanted to take it a step further by getting a selfie on the front porch of the cult leader's house. I didn't want to go but she used the stamp, so I got stuck driving the getaway car. Let's just say, the cult leader didn't take kindly to being woken up by camera flashes in front of his house at 3 AM. I've never run so fast in my entire life.

If you were to get a tattoo, what would you get and why?

Well, this is a huge IF, because I am 99.9% sure I will NEVER get a tattoo....I don't do well with needles. But if there were some magical way to get a tattoo that didn't involve needles or pain, I would get something to do with dance. I met a dancer once who had the phrase "I walk forward in the certainty that my dance is secure" tattooed on the arches of her feet, so that when she stood in first position you could read it. I thought that was really neat.

What is your most prized or treasured possession and why?

My first pair of pointe shoes. I got them when I was eleven. I only danced en pointe for a few months before Dad moved us, and my new studio didn't offer that level of ballet, but those were some of the best few months of my life.

Ok, time for a little quickfire round….

Sweet or spicy? spicy

Celebrity crush? Liam Hemsworth (swoon)

Your pet peeve? When people are terrible drivers and don't do the thank you wave! Is that just a Texas thing? If I'm gonna let you merge in front of me, you BETTER wave at me in your rearview mirror to say thank you, or you are dead to me.

Your go to comfort food? Anything chicken. Preferably fried.

The best sound in the world? there's this sound that Carson makes when we OH MY GOD I CAN'T SAY THAT.

Football fan? Yes or No? *sigh* Kind of? Depends on the day.

Thanks again Dallas! It was so wonderful having you here! I can’t wait for everyone to experience your story. I really truly hope that we’ll be seeing a lot more of you!

And now for my review:
*Spoiler-Free* REVIEW: All Lined Up by Cora Carmack
Publication Date: May 13th, 2014

*DISCLOSURE: ARC was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review


With each new novel, Cora Carmack has never ceased to amaze and surprise me, not only with her immense ability to weave words into tales full of humor and heart, but with her talent for creating memorable and lovable stories and characters. Her latest novel, All Lined Up, bears no exception. In fact, Cora and her novel have both gone above and beyond my high expectations of them.

All Lined Up is the first novel of her sophomore series. The Rusk University series is being touted as New Adult meets Friday Night Lights, however don’t be fooled into thinking that it is just about football. What Cora has written is an intensely truthful novel not only about the love between the boy who meets girl, but the love and meaning of family and friendship.

Each character within the novel, from the highly relatable Dallas, our heroine, to the hardworking, swoonworthy Carson, the hilarious spitfire best friend Stella, to the gruffly demanding father/coach, brings something very important to the novel creating a truly phenomenal ensemble cast of characters. This is just another facet of why this novel works so well.

This book allows you to really explore, not only the emerging relationship between Dallas and Carson, but who they were as individuals as well. Their romance is definitely a steamy one, but what I loved about it, was the friendship that develops on the way from A to B. It’s a very real and honest relationship that could jump right off the page and into real life.

The same could be said for Dallas’s relationship with her father (and Carson’s coach). The struggles between the dad who doesn’t quite know how to raise the daughter who doesn’t fit into his area of expertise, and the daughter who wants to pursue her dreams but doesn’t know how to separate herself from her dad’s expectations of her. I felt this relationship to my core and despite all the trials and missteps, you still feel the love hidden in every word between them.

I have been a huge fan of Cora’s Losing It series, and All Lined Up has shown that she’s not a one trick pony. This was a unique and engaging novel that sucked me in, left me begging for more, and fully invested in this series. Whoever took the chance to publish Cora Carmack for the first time, I owe you my heartfelt thanks! But really, this was probably the smartest and best decision you’ve ever made.

A beautiful novel, one of her best yet. Go get it now.


About the Author: 

Cora Carmack is a twenty-something writer who likes to write about twenty-something characters. She's done a multitude of things in her life-- boring jobs (like working retail), Fun jobs (like working in a theatre), stressful jobs (like teaching), and dream jobs (like writing). She enjoys placing her characters in the most awkward situations possible, and then trying to help them get a boyfriend out of it. Awkward people need love, too. Her first book, LOSING IT, is a New York Times and USA Today bestseller.

Where to purchase & learn more:

Available for ORDER NOW!!

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all the best, dear readers!


  1. Okay, favourite thing about them... mmmh... I don't know, the fact that they're more complex, not banal characters, because they had to set up the mask of the perfect player against that of the guys they really are.

  2. Their story is so sweet and real that you feel like you are in the book. Great writing, great story.