Blog Tour: Just Between Us by Hayley Oakes



An attraction that can’t be denied ….

Ten years spent trying to forget.



Kyle returns to his home town following years away to discover Sophie, the girl he could never have, nursing a broken heart after being dumped by her fiancé.


A decade before Sophie and Kyle hated each other, she thought he was an arrogant playboy and he thought she was a spoilt princess. However one night a drunken kiss changed everything ….

Back then he was the achingly attractive bad boy that, however much she tried, Sophie couldn’t resist. Now as Kyle spends the summer attempting to revive Sophie from her misery, she wonders if the one person she wouldn’t let herself have is the only one who can save her?

Stephanie: ★★★★

A love so powerful it can’t be denied. A love so forbidden it must be denied. This is a tragically beautiful story of wanting everything that is wrong.

It’s Sophie’s wedding day. She is at her parents house, in her old bedroom and she is not getting married. Slipping further into a funk, she just wants to be left alone to mourn the loss of her future. But when her mom informs her that her step-brother is coming home as planned, Sophie freaks out a bit. It’s ok. Everything that happened was in the past. They have both moved on and they are better people for it, right? Well…

Kyle and Sophie have a past. Both spent so much time together, mostly not by choice in the beginning but the something happened, everything happened, life happened. But they can’t be together his dad is married to her mom. It’s weird and not okay. But there is something betwene the two of them from all those years ago. The attraction never faded, the need and want for each other never diminished. But they were older and stronger now.

Knowing that Kyle wanted so much more for Sophie out of life and knowing she needed to escape the depression she was quickly falling into, he wants to take her away from their hometown. He wants her to live again, to be herself again and yes, he even though she could be his again. But he would never push it and he would never be her rebound. What they had was something amazing and something special, but also something that was kept a secret from everyone. I mean 10 years ago, they spent one amazing summer all wrapped up in one another and fell so hopelessly in love for each of them. But more than anything, he just wants her to smile and feel like herself again.

Sophie is taking this opportunity away from her small town to find her way again after a devistating break up. What she never expects is that this trip will remind her of everything she loved about who she was years ago. But not only about who she was, but who she loved.

But after 10 years, is there any sort of a chance for Kyle and Sophie? Could they ever get past the awkward conversation of “hey, we are step-siblings?” And how would they share that with everyone else? Can what happened in the past be the promise of a bright future or will it doom them forever?

This book was fabulous, a bit taboo and completely beautiful. It is two normal people thrown into circumstances out of their control but through that finding the most beautiful bond and love. But never being able to tell anyone, it is just too hard and too complicated. It was touching and moving, with just the right amount of steam.

It takes us through a very socially taboo relationship past and present. One thing that I had a problem with was the constant alternating between past and present. It just seemed a bit choppy to me and missed a little flow to it. It did not take away from the story of the book and I would never mark down an author for a personal preference of mine. The book was still wonderful and still touched the heart in just the right moments. It was touching and heartwarming and shows the true power of love.

Depsite their circumstances, despite their parents, Kyle and Sophie just seemed destined to be together. Their characters are what I loved about this book. They didn’t have dark tragic pasts. Their parents were all divorced and remarried, but the worst part of their lives is the entire subject of the taboo relationship between the two of them. But I have to say that just caused the book to progress and build.

I loved the characters, I loved the storyline and it kept me going from page one. I was quite impressed with this book.




Character Inspiration with Haley Oakes

            I have always loved angst ridden romance ever since the days of ‘My so called life’ and ‘Party of five’. I love the idea of a romance that is doomed to fail despite how much the characters are drawn to each other.

I wanted to create a story where the characters were unable to stay apart but didn’t really like each other. I also don’t like stories where the end is a foregone conclusion and so I like the reader to always guess what will happen next.

My inspiration for Kyle was every bad boy in fiction that I ever read, in my mind he was a lot harsher than I wrote him but it didn’t translate to paper and he became a tortured good guy deep down. I wanted him to be a mixture of Jordan Catalano from ‘My so called life’, Griffin from ‘Party of Five’ and Patrick from ’10 things I hate about you’. Someone who is adored by people but doesn’t require the adoration, who is effortlessly cool but doesn’t need the acceptance.

My inspiration for Sophie was the teenage angst movies that I have enjoyed my whole life. The torture of feeling like you don’t quite fit in and the hardship of realising that your parents aren’t perfect. You realise that your mum can love again and be giddy. You realise that you can get yourself into trouble and don’t have to ask permission for everything. My own teenage experiences and those of my friends were drawn on heavily,

Sophie gets a bad rep in some reviews for being whiny and selfish but really all she is someone who is too scared to just be herself and accept what she wants. She’s a typical teenager who worries more about what everyone else thinks rather than just following her heart.


Hayley OakesAbout Hayley Oakes

Hayley Oakes is a wife to a Manchester United fan and a mother to a three year old daughter both require patience and a sense of humour. She enjoys reading angst ridden romance and writing stories that she would love to read. She loves post apocalyptic movies and anything 80’s. This is her second novel.


Teaser 5



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