Falling in love with her cousin’s rock star ex-boyfriend was definitely not part of the plan.
keep her head down, ace her classes, and most importantly… don’t upset the uncle paying her tuition. Translation? Don’t piss off his dramatic, self-absorbed daughter, Danica, even if she’s a nightmare to live with.Falling in love with her cousin’s rock star ex-boyfriend was definitely not part of the plan.As the drummer of a now-famous rock band, Mike Madden could have any girl he wants. He’s sweet, funny, romantic, talented–and the only guy that’s ever made Hailey’s heart do cartwheels in her chest. The more she gets to know him, the harder she falls, but Hailey knows they can never be more than friends… because Danica wants him back, and she’ll fight dirty to win.
Mike is falling for Hailey too, but Danica’s threats and his rock star life-music video shoots, international tours, obsessed fans-could tear them apart before they’ve even begun. Hailey isn’t sure she’s the one for him, but Mike’s waited years for a girl like her… and he’ll do anything to prove it.
Meet our Rock Star Drummer – Mike Madden
Readers fell in love with drummer Mike Madden from the very first book in this series, MAYHEM, when it became clear that he wasn’t like the rest of the guys in the band: Mike never took advantage of the fact that groupies were throwing themselves at his feet; instead, he was always waiting for “the one.” Mike had his heart broken back in high school, when his band was just starting to pave their way in the music industry, but that never damaged his belief in true love. He was never looking for a one-night stand—he was looking for his future wife, the woman he would spend the rest of his life with. He waited for her through RIOT, he waited for her through CHAOS, and he finally meets her in HAVOC, when he finds Hailey Harper waiting with her cousin outside of his tour bus.
The fact that her cousin is his ex-girlfriend—the same one who broke his heart in high school and now wants him back—complicates things… a lot. But no one ever said Happily Ever Afters came easy…
HAVE YOU FALLEN FOR ALL THE MEN OF MAYHEM?
Q and A with the Author
How is Hailey different from the other heroines you’ve written?
Hailey’s character is really layered, and she rarely fell into any extreme: she wasn’t super confident, but she’d stand up for herself when she had to; she didn’t believe she was pretty, but she knew she wasn’t ugly; she couldn’t stand her cousin, but she had a sense of family loyalty ingrained in her values. All of these middle-of-the-road characteristics made her feel very real, but they also made her difficult to write. I often had trouble figuring out how she’d act in a situation—more like the story was pushing her instead of her pushing the story. All of my heroines develop and change throughout their stories—something that I feel is an essential element of the New Adult genre—but Hailey’s major obstacle was her confidence, and that involved a deep level of exploration and growth that I think a lot of readers are really going to relate to.
Did you have to do any special type of research for this story?
In each of my Mayhem series books, I try to throw in some cool rock star element. In MAYHEM, the heroine went on tour with the band. In RIOT, the heroine went to a giant music festival. In CHAOS, the heroine was part of the band, so we got to see performing and touring from her perspective. And in HAVOC, Hailey gets to see (and be part of) a big-budget music video shoot! I had the video all planned out in my head, but since I had no idea how music video production actually works, I contacted an actual music video producer to find out. Since Taking Back Sunday was one of the big inspirations for the band in my books, I decided to start by checking out some of my favorite music videos by them and seeing who produced them. Then, I emailed that person, hoping and praying that they’d take the time to respond, and I freaked the hell out when they responded right away! The producer taught me all sorts of cool things about the production process, staff, and equipment, and it really helped me make those music video scenes much more authentic and detailed.
Readers have always loved the group dynamics and cast of characters in this series—can we expect to see those side characters and the couples from earlier books in HAVOC?
Yes! Because HAVOC is the final book in the series, it was very important to me to not only make sure Mike and Hailey got the happy ending they deserved, but to make sure that I ended the entire series—all of the romances, from all of the books—in a way that left readers content and smiling. In HAVOC, we get to see Adam and Rowan from MAYHEM, we get to see Dee and Joel from RIOT, we get to see Kit and Shawn from CHAOS, and we even get to see a ton of other series favorites: Leti, Kale, Kit’s brothers, Van… and even a surprise mention at the very end that ties everything together in a way I couldn’t be happier with. J
If Mike had a Horcrux, what would it be?
Easy! His drumsticks!
How did you come up with the characters for the story?
Most of the characters came out of my head, but Mike, the hero, was originally inspired by my own husband! When I wrote the first book in this series, I never envisioned it being a series. It was only the second story I ever wrote, so I couldn’t even dream that big yet (my agent and publisher were the ones who saw its potential!). So when I wrote all of the band guys, I wrote them as side characters, and Mike possessed a lot of the same characteristics as my husband—he was the loner of the group, he had a witty sense of humor, he had beautiful brown eyes, he was passionate and committed, he loved pizza and beer and video games. I plugged my husband’s name in as a placeholder, but then I waited too long to change it. The name “Mike” just stuck, and eventually, Mike Madden the character grew into his own unique person—even if he and my husband have quite a bit in common. 😉
What are you favorite types of stories to read?
I love reading stories with romance and happy endings! Regardless of if its Young Adult, New Adult, Paranormal, etc. (all my favorites), I love having that satisfied feeling at the end. The kind that just makes you deflate with a long, happy, satisfied sigh. And I always try to give my readers that same feeling with my own stories.
Describe yourself in five words or less.
Driven. Passionate. Busy. Caring. Layered.
What gave you the most trouble with this story?
Writing a villain was new for me, and even though she (Danica) turned out spectacularly evil, she was a real b*tch to write, in ALL senses of the word. Haha. I knew that Mike and Hailey were meant to be together, but how could I make it happen when Danica wouldn’t get out of their way? It was a challenge to make Hailey and Mike’s relationship grow organically and meaningfully without crossing that “cheating” line—a hard line I knew from day one it would not suit them to cross—so writing this story involved a lot of pre-planning and tiptoeing and thought. Ultimately, the challenge that Danica presented ended up giving so many extra layers to Hailey and Mike’s relationship, and it made their love story that much deeper.
What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
When I’m not writing or chasing after my year-and-a-half old son, I love interacting with my readers! I try to respond to every single email and message, and I have a reader group on Facebook, called Jamie’s Rock Stars, that I’m very active in. My readers have told me that they love how much I interact with them, and honestly, it’s one of my absolute favorite parts of this job, so I do it as often as I can. I don’t just write for the sake of writing—I write because I love knowing that people are out there reading my books, and I really enjoy connecting with those people and getting to know them.