With Every Heartbeat

With Every Heartbeat

by Melody Grace

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From the New York Times bestselling author of the Sweetbriar Cove series comes a romantic stand-alone novel about passion, ambition, and epic first love.

Annalise thought she knew what she wanted in life. Training in the beautiful city of Rome for the performance of a lifetime, she thought her destiny was set. Then she met a handsome stranger in the street, and everything changed.

Raphael is bold, passionate, and seductive. He sees something in Annalise that she never dreamed possible, and now he's determined to show her a world beyond rules -- a dance without limits.

The dance of love.

An innocent dancer. A mysterious stranger. As Annalise is drawn deeper into the romantic delights of Rome, she'll question everything she believed about her future. But with opening night looming, can she find the strength to risk it all? And will she be forced to choose between her one true love, ballet, and the new passion in her heart?

Find out in the swoon-worthy stand-alone novel from Melody Grace!

(Note: With Every Heartbeat was previously published in serial form as the Dirty Dancing series. It has been re-edited and collected into one standalone volume)

"Breathtakingly intense and unbelievably sexy - WITH EVERY HEARTBEAT will have you packing your bags for Italy to go find a real-life Raphael. Another sizzling must-read from Melody Grace!" -- Lauren Blakely, NYT bestselling author of Playing With Her Heart and Trophy Husband.

"This book is fiery, hot, intense and will leave you wanting more by this fabulous author." -- Romance Raider Book Reviews

"WITH EVERY HEARTBEAT will touch your heart and stir your blood." -- Monica Murphy, NYT Bestselling author of One Week Girlfriend and Second Chance Boyfriend.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940148869757
Publisher: Melody Grace Books
Publication date: 11/08/2013
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 342,180
File size: 442 KB

About the Author

Melody Grace is the New York Times bestselling author of the Sweetbriar Cove and Beachwood Bay series. A small-town girl turned SoCal beach lover, she loves bad boys, good men, and steamy happily-ever-afters.

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With Every Heartbeat 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Because that's the dangerous thing about the truth: once you grasp it, it cannot be un-learned. And once you feel love, real love, you can never forget..." - Annalise I received an ARC from the author in exchange for my honest review I just want to start off by saying, that I totally fan-girled when I saw Melody Grace was coming out with a new book. After loving her Beachwood Bay series (which you need to read if you haven't), I just knew I had to get my hands on whatever else this author put out. When I read the synopsis, and saw the book was set in Rome...I was sold! Much like her other books Melody Grace always, to me, starts out really strong with her prologues. The one in this book was incredibly poetic, which just enough of an ominous feel that I was left wondering how the storyline would unfold. Also, since Annalise is a ballet dancer, all the chapters are titled after a ballet move, which I felt was a great tie in to the story! Moving on to the plot, the premise is that Annalise, along with The America Ballet Company, goes to Rome, where the company is touring Swan Lake. Though Annalise is a great dancer, her mother was renowned in the world of ballet, so she feels the additional pressure to succeed. Since she's a a peak age for dancing, and not yet landing all the solos and roles her mother expects her to, Annalise views the gig in Rome as her last big shot at greatness. Even so, on an outing with her troupe, Annalise gets separated from the group and ends up winding through the streets of Italy, where she meets fellow street dancer, Raphael. From there, both her and Raphael let themselves fall into the whirlwind of their intense feelings, but will love prove true in the end? First off, I must say that I really enjoyed Annalise's character. Lately, many NA books (for me) will have a great male lead, but then the female counterpart will just make you want to grind your teeth every few chapters. That wasn't the case at all with Annalise! She starts of the story as shy, and very much feeling all the pressure her mother's putting on her to succeed. With that, I was astounded at the things she had to go through. From dealing with other nasty dancers, to measuring everything she ate, to putting up with constant over-bearing mother's constant criticism, Annalise really pulled at my heartstrings. I just wanted to hug her, and make her see what everyone else saw, a beautiful and graceful young woman and dancer. Yet, it was seeing Annalise come out of her shell, and gain strength both through her dancing and being with Raphael, that really made me love her character. The decision she has to take towards the end is not at all an easy one, but I loved how she took it upon herself to figure everything out and just listen to her heart. Raphael was another character I greatly enjoyed. Though he can't replace Emerson (my heart be still), this Italian boy defiantly gave him a run for his money. Raphael, as we see in the beginning of the book, dances around the streets of Rome with his friends. Even so, unlike the other people in his troupe, dance is a real passion for Raphael, and he seeks to do something more professional with it. From the beginning, once he sets his eyes on Annalise (and saves her purse from a shoplifter), Raphael was relentless in his pursuit of her. My favorite part of the relationship, apart from when Raphael and Annalise danced together, was seeing how Raphael helped Annalise loosen up and see things through a new perspective. From taking her to eat gelattos, to kissing her senseless in his apartment, Raphael opened Annalise up to the possibility that life can have multiple dreams, but whatever they may be, the important thing is that they make you happy. Also, the boy was swoon worthy and things that came out of his mouth, made me giggle and blush all at once! Whenever both he and Annalise were on scene together, the pages of my kindle just sizzled with their chemistry. "I'm going to teach you what pleasure feels like." Raphael tells me..."What it means to want someone, beg for their touch." Desire rises, clawing me from within. Raphael lifts his head again, his dark eyes meeting mine, black with promise. "You're going to come for me, and I won't stop until you're mine." As I've mentioned, the setting of this book was Rome, and it was perfect! From the descriptions, I felt like I was walking along those tiny streets, taking in all the sights and smell the Italian city has to offer. Plot wise, though it was a bit predictable at times, I have to admit that Melody Grace's writing kept me riveted to my screen, and at the end, even I couldn't predict how things would go down. That said, I loved the ending and how Annalise and Raphael's story wrapped up. To say I like this story was understatement, but with how well Melody Grace pens her books, I'm not surprised. Apparently, this series will follow other characters (the next book is Rosalie's) through different cities of the world, which only has me excited to see what comes out next! If you like romance, swoony alpha males, exotic cities, and the chance for love to conquer, then this a definite must read for you!
LovinLosLibros More than 1 year ago
Melody Grace has done it again! With Every Heartbeat is a great start to a new, captivatingly, sexy series that I cannot wait to read more of! I am a huge fan of her Beachwood Bay series and while I do love Beachwood Bay, it was fun seeing this book set overseas amidst the gorgeous, historical Rome! I admit, I'm biased because Rome was my absolute favorite city of those that I visited while I was in Italy. (I actually teared up when I walked into the Colosseum.) Rome is such a vibrant city full of history and magic just like Grace depicted. I remember going down to a little district myself to a bar where people milled about the piazza, having a great time. I didn't see any dancing that I remember though... ;) Speaking of dancing... whew! Center Stage is one of my favorite movies and I've always been fascinated by dance. Ballet is so intriguing to me because I know it's not something I could ever do. The amount of work they put in, hours they spend rehearsing, and how diligent they are about watching what they eat, etc is mind-blowing to me. This story touches on all of that and really shows you how, even though the main character loves dancing, sometimes life will throw you a curve ball and force you to reexamine what it is you really want out of life. I really enjoyed Annalise's character. Her entire life has been centered around dance and while she loves it, she definitely feels the pressure that comes with it. Her mother used to be a prima ballerina and she really places high expectations on her daughter. She won't settle for her daughter being a part of the ballet corps, but expects her to obtain solos and larger roles. Her mother sends her to Rome in hopes that she will make her mark while the top dancers remain in NYC. Here, Annalise's dreams of dancing are challenged and she must confront what she really wants in life. Meeting Raphael was certainly NOT part of the Rome plan. Yet, Annalise finds herself captivated by the gorgeous Italian dancer. "The breath is sucked from my lungs, and I feel a thrill ripple through me, a sensation I've never known before: anticipation, as if I know something important is about to happen. Something life-changing. And then he starts to dance." Annalise sees the passion and sensuality in his dancing, but most of all she sees how free it is. Ballet is so structured and full of discipline. The way he moves with such fluidity and grace is what draws her in and she can't help but feel the blooming desire within as she watches him. After an almost unfortunate incident brings them together, he invites her to a party the next night. She knows the Company has strict rules about curfew and she can't afford to make any mistakes that might deny her a solo or worse get kicked out. Yet, for the first time in her life, Annalise wants to take that leap into the unknown. She desperately wants to see him again and as crazy as she knows it is, she's finally doing something reckless and passionate for once in her life. I really enjoyed Raphael's character. He was sweet, passionate, and truly cared for Annalise and her career. He enjoys dancing in his troupe, but wants to dance professionally. He understands Annalise's passion and drive for dance and believes in her. He ignites a fire in her that she's never known before and while dance is everything, she discovers what she's been missing out on for all these years. "I don't understand it, how I could have gone my whole life without feeling even a hint of this desire. Now it threatens to consume me. The scent of him, his deep musky smell; the taut curve of his bicep, wrapped tight around me; the feel of his breath, light against my cheek. Every sense is awake, every part of my body is calling out for him, but I'm helpless, too scared to move from his embrace, too shy to reach up and bring his lips to mine. I can only wait, my heart pounding, until at last, Raphael strokes his hand across my shoulder and lifts my face to his." I really enjoyed Karla and Rosalie's characters in the novel too. Karla is a fellow dancer and Rosalie is an assistant to Mademoiselle (one of the Company's strict instructors). Rosalie was probably my favorite of the two- she is treated pretty badly, yet she loves being able to travel and so she will endure some of the other dancers' taunts and being forced to do Mme's bidding so she can continue to do so. I am really looking forward to her story next! We will find her in Paris! I thought Karla was ok, but I did find her to be a bit duplicitous. One minute she'd encourage Annalise's relationship with Raphael, but then she would become angry at her for sneaking out because she was putting her and Rosalie in jeopardy. I do understand her concerns, as she believed Annalise was sacrificing her hard-earned career for a guy. I don't think she had any idea that her encouraging Annalise to pursue this guy would turn into what it did. I did not care for Raphael's dance partner, Francesca. She was rude, smug, and believed she had some claim to Raphael. However, she is Raphael's best friend's little sister, so it was difficult for him to ignore her completely, especially since he works at their family's restaurant. Annalise's mom is also another character who I did not care for. She was only concerned about her daughter's career as a ballerina- she did not care that her daughter might want more from life. The fact that she would cut her daughter off if she did not do what she wanted her to do was just an example of how vile and self-centered this woman was. With Every Heartbeat is a story about passion and discovering that life is unpredictable and messy, but sometimes the uncertainty of the ride is what makes life worth living.
BCarter111 More than 1 year ago
I fell in love with Melody Grace’s new serie Cities of Love. With Every Heartbeat left me with a big smile on my face and butterflies in my stomach. If you can’t tell already I loved it!!! With Every Heartbeat is the story of ballerina Annalise Taylor. Annalise has come to Rome with a traveling ballet company trying to prove to herself and her superstar mother that she can be the ballet star they both dreamed she would be. What she wasn’t expecting was to meet local street dancer Raphael. Raphael opens her eyes to a new outlook on life and what she wants from it. Annalise will be faced with all new choices she never thought she would have before in her life. I really liked Annalise. She was quiet, innocent but had a burning passion for dance and life. She was willing to embraced life and all the changes it would throw at her. Then there was Raphael...sigh! He was a sexy Italian man with all the right moves. I think this line describes him best...”Raphael. The face of a saint, the body of a sinner.” Yeah that sounds about right. :) This is my fourth book by Melody Grace and she has yet to let me down. Her books keep getting better and better!!! Annalise’s friend and roomy Rosalie story is up next and I can’t wait for it. To anyone that loves a good romance in a far away romantic city this will be the book for you!
LaurenLikesLattes More than 1 year ago
God bless a hot Italian guy. And a foreign setting! Swoon. Can you please book me on the next flight to Rome? Melody Grace has such a gift for making a setting come alive. Rome is vibrant, pulsating and swooning with desire. And Raphael is passionate and seductive as he teachers Annalise the ways of love and the ways of dance. Have I mentioned the kissing? And the more than kissing? And all the other yumminess? This book has it all and you'll be packing your bags for Rome too. But it's also a story of self-discovery as Analise comes into her own. READ!!! Comment | 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved the Beachwood Bay books, and now I have a whole new series to obsess over! This book was amazing: steamy, romantic, and so heartfelt. Melody made me feel like I was there in Rome with Annalise and Raphael, and as for Raphael… *fans self* Their connection was so powerful, and the sexy scenes were sizzling! Loved this book, and I can't wait for more! 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thank you to Melody Grace and InkSlinger PR for allowing me to read and review an ARC for this tour! This was my first Melody Grace novel, and I was duly impressed!  I will definitely be reading more by her!  Her prose is lyrical and a refreshing change from the more standard New Adult fare.  The setting of Rome seemed to suit this story to a tee, and the characters seemed very real.  The entire story is told from Annalise's point of view, and she is quite a conflicted character.  Having been a competitive gymnast, I know a bit about the drive and dedication it takes to make it to the top of your chosen craft (let's just say I didn't always have these qualities!) and the author lets us know that getting to the top can sometimes mean stepping on others along the way.  The world of ballet seems very political!  It was also evident that Annalise had somehow lost the pure joy of dancing as a result of all the pressure she was under to perform to perfection.  Her mother was very demanding and totally unforgiving.  I can only imagine what it would be like to grow up in that type of environment. Raphael, on the other hand, epitomizes the joy of dance!  He is so passionate about his dance that he has given up everything in order to be able to train and perform.  Annalise, in contrast, has been so sheltered and encouraged (forced?) to dance that it's become more of a job and less of a passion.  They are completely drawn to each other from first glimpse, but of course there are obstacles to overcome if they truly want to be together. I understand how it was so difficult for Annalise.  She was so naive in regards to relationships and the opposite sex, it's no wonder she was a bit fearful of Raphael.  She was also afraid of getting caught.  It makes me wonder if she just came out in the open if any of the other dancers or instructors would have cared.  It was odd that although technically an adult, she still acted and was treated like a child. There were so many times, too, when I just wanted to shake Annalise and yell at her!  Most of the conflict in this novel was due to Annalise misunderstanding the circumstances.  Chalk it up to her being so young, inexperienced, and insecure.  All in all, "With Every Heartbeat" is perfect if you're looking for a sweet romance with not only one, but two great settings - Rome and the world of dance!
twimom101 More than 1 year ago
Usually I would start immediately on a review the minute I finish a book. But for some reason I needed a good night’s sleep to think on it with this one. Did I enjoy the book? Sure I did. Did I like the characters? Absolutely. Was I in love with this read? Not really. Now I wasn't in love with the story, but I did enjoy it. I love this author’s ability to take us to another country without us having to step foot in said country. Not a lot of authors can do that without blabbing on too much and boring the reader to death. But Grace did an excellent job. I think what got me was everything happened too quickly. I thought the coming together of the characters was short lived and then the ending felt thrust upon us. This is totally different than what I was used to with Grace's other work. I did however like that the author didn't wrap everything up in the end. There was still a sense that Annalise was working through some things and it was ok that she didn't know what she wanted to do just yet. That definitely made it all a bit more believable. Now, I did however love the romance the story told. Even though it happened somewhat quickly, I was absolutely smitten with Raphael and Annalise. I would have loved to have seen their romance play out a little longer than what it did, but it was still intense and undeniable. The romantic scenes were just that…romantic. That is one thing I have always loved about Grace’s writing. She gives us some scorching romance that makes all hearts swoon. Would I recommend this story to others? Sure thing! I didn't hate the story. I simply just enjoyed it. It has a wonderful story line and some fun characters that is sure to catch a lot of reader's attention. Pick it up and see what you think! 4 Stars for me!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was the first time I've read a book from Melody Grace and I have to say, if they are all like this, then I will definitely be reading more. What can I possibly say about a book that encompasses Rome, gelato, ballerinas and the romantic Raphael? It was the perfect mix of sweet and steamy. I was immediately pulled into the book from the start and was finished within 3 hours. Annalise was the quintessential ballerina, working hard all her life to live up to her mother's expectations, no time for a social life and especially no time for boys. She was sweet, naive and just an all around nice girl. I couldn't help but like her! She happens to stumble across the wonderful and oh-so-sweet Raphael. They are immediately drawn to each other.  "Our eyes lock. It's only a split second, those piercing blue eyes on mine, but I feel the moment stretch for an eternity. His gaze crashes through me, setting every nerve and sense alight, as if I'm touchpaper and he's a molten spark, dancing through my bloodstream." Over the course of a few weeks, their relationship develops. They are both struggling with finding themselves while living up to the ridiculous expectations expected by their families along with their own insecurities. They have a whirlwind romance and I found myself getting goosebumps while reading their story. They don't have a whole lot of troubles to overcome, just a minor disagreement that was easily fixed. But then again, I wouldn't stay mad at a man like Raphael for long either! "I won't wish you good luck, because I know you don't need it. Just dance what's in your heart, it's the only thing that matters. They can't help but fall in love with you, the way I did. The way I always will." Swoooooon!! They are beautiful together. They both share the same love of dance and have such a great love for each other and I was so happy to see them get their happy ending. It's all about finding yourself and following your heart. "I know, whatever the uncertain future holds, it will be ok. More than ok. We're together. As long as we share this bond, everything else will fall into place. This love is ours, and it's everything.  I hear the music begin, and I dance." Overall I give it 4 out of 5 stars. It was a good read and I recommend it if you're looking for a sweet, easy to read story.
kimberlyfaye More than 1 year ago
“There are some things in life we know to be true, beyond logic or reason, science or faith. Irresistible truths, they’re called, the things we seem to instinctively grasp, as if the knowledge were imprinted deep in our DNA, written on the very fiber of our souls. For as long as I can remember, I’ve known I would be a dancer. From the moment my mother laced a pair of tiny pink ballet slippers on my feet, my destiny was set. I would be just like her, a prima ballerina, one of the greats; gliding across those hallowed stages, moving my audience to tears. Nothing else mattered. Nothing would ever be so true. Or so I thought.” Annalise is a ballet dancer. She’s always wanted to be a ballet dancer. It’s her passion. Her life’s calling. Until, that is, she meets a man named Raphael in Rome. Now she’s torn between the life she always thought she wanted and the desire, attraction and connection she feels with this man. “His name was Raphael. He blazed into my life, bright as a comet, a brilliant supernova that blotted out the sun and sent my careful plans shattering into mere darkness. I burned for him the way I’d never known before; for the first time, I understood what it was to be alive.” Raphael, a dancer of a completely different type, shows Annalise what it really means to connect with another person. What it means to live and love. Their passion and connection was so real, the sexual tension so palpable, it all leapt off the page (or screen, as the case may be). I don’t think I’ve ever read anything as sensual as the scenes where they are just dancing with each other and connecting with one another. This book was steamy and sexy before it even got to the more explicit scenes. This couple was combustable. “And once you feel love, real love, you can never forget the taste of those kisses, the sun-drenched mornings, the secret pleasures of the gasping, restless nights.” “This isn’t just a fascination, an idle crush, no, this is something deeper, a desire that snakes through my veins, hot and hungry.” Rome was the perfect setting for this story. It was magical and the author’s depiction made me feel like I was right there with Annalise and Raphael. The detail was incredible. I don’t think this particular story would have worked the same anywhere else. The city was so real and so important that it was almost a character in and of itself. I could feel the energy of the city. I adored both Annalise and Raphael. They were so evenly matched, so absolutely perfect for each other. Their journey was beautiful and magical and hot and passionate. They found what they needed, what they didn’t even know was missing, and found themselves along the way. “Is this what people feel all the time? I marvel at the idea. How am I supposed to function, to focus, now that I know that he is out there in the city somewhere? That he might be thinking about me…”  “For the first time in my life, I have something I want just as much as ballet. Maybe even more.” Without giving much away, I just want to point out that this isn’t a story about a woman ditching everything she loves and believes in and losing sight of her goals just because she’s met a man. It was far more complex than that. Annalise truly discovered herself during her time in Rome and with Raphael. She learned what it meant to have a fully-enriched life. She was still dedicated and passionate about dance, but she learned there was more to life than what she’d known all along. I could feel how conflicted she was about these new feelings and wants and needs. I think that’s what made me connect with her so easily. “Dance with me, Annalise,” Raphael whispers. “Dance with me, and see what it feels like to dance without rules, without boundaries. From the soul.” With Every Heartbeat made me fall in love. It made me fall in love with the characters, Rome and love itself. It was a beautiful coming-of-age tale. A story about what happens when you meet the person who makes everything and everyone else pale by comparison. A story about how that one person can cause a huge shift in the goals, dreams and truths you always thought you knew about yourself. It’s not about losing who you are, but about finding out who you’re truly meant to be. It was beautiful and sexy and completely wonderful. It looks like the next stop on Melody Grace’s Cities of Love tour is Paris. I can’t wait. I don’t know where else she plans to take us, but I’ll be eagerly following along the journey. If the other books in the series are as enchanting as this one (which I have no doubt they will be), I’ll have added a new series to my list of all-time favorites. I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. All quotes come from the review copy and may differ from the final version. 
alientwilight More than 1 year ago
I just finished "With Every Heartbeat by Melody Grace.Was a cute read.I want to go to Rome.This was a in site into the world of being a ballerina & a dancer.Standing up for yourself discovering you .The dedication and sacrifice that a dancer goes through. Then the unthinkable happens? Love or Dance? In this book Annalise has to find out what she really loves and live for herself.Truly be happy.I like that sexy Italian Stallion lol ..Raphael sexy,has a accent & great moves on the dance floor & off lol. Love the friend(Rosalie) in the book.Poor Rosalie that girl gets worked to dead.Can't wait to read more about her in the next book. Would love to read more about Annalise & Raphael & even her mother...see what happened if her mother can really forgive her and accept Annalise. Check this book & other books by this author. Excerpt I like: “He is magnificent, a fallen angel sent to seduce and bewitch, dancing like I’ve never seen before. Time doesn’t exist; the four walls of the room mean nothing. All that matters is the two of us, dancing together as one. One heartbeat, one will, one soul. It’s perfection, a dream, to share my passion like this—to make it something greater “him than I ever felt dancing alone. I dance with him like I’ve only ever dreamed of dancing. And I know I’ll never be the same again.” This book isn't for kids under 17.