Social Skills

Now Available

Cover art by Dani Alexander</a

Cover art by Dani Alexander

Music is the only form of communication Connor Owens controls. No matter how badly he wishes to fit in, friendly banter and casual conversations have never been his thing. College is yet another social universe he has no clue how to navigate—until he meets Jared, a football player with chestnut eyes and a cocky grin that holds the power to shatter his self-imposed prison. Jared’s attention opens Connor up to a new realm of emotional and physical intimacy. But as Connor’s self-confidence grows, so does his fear that everything will fall apart. Because in this socially stratified world, how long can a relationship between an introverted violinist and a closeted football player really last?

FinalistSM

amazon buy button  BN buy now button2 All romance buy now button2

 

Social Skills

 

Amazon AllRomance Ebooks Paperback

Goodreads link

Social Skills Audiobook Now Available

On AmazonAudible, and iTunes

Awesome cover art by Dani Alexander

Cover art by Dani Alexander

18 Comments

  1. Mao

    I just want to say, I love this story. If Connor was any more like me, it would be creepy. Someday, I hope to be able to genuinely open up the way he’s able to at the end. (Ah, dreams…)
    You are an absolute inspiration, Sara Alva. Keep writing. :)

    Reply

    • Sara

      Thank you. And yes, trust me, there is always hope that an ‘introvert’ can learn to open up more. They may not be the life of every single party, but they can still enjoy being themselves. :)

      Reply

    • Annie

      Wow! All I can say is wow! This book is absolutely amazing. I’m 16 years old and I have ADHD, so reading books for long periods of time (or any time at all) is very hard for me. However, this book was just so awesome that I read almost 100 pages of it in one day, which is kind of a big deal for me! I also have social anxiety, just like Connor. Every time you explained his thoughts in social situations, I felt like you were describing mine. You’re the kind of author that just “gets” people! I also am a filmmaker, and I would LOVE to make a short film in my high school film club based on this book! If I can get it together, I’ll definitely send you the link!

      Reply

  2. Jimmy

    Just finished this book (kept me up until 3am as wanted to find out what becomes of Conner and Jared)
    Really enjoyed the story and characters. Please tell me there is going to be a follow up book(s)?

    Reply

    • Sara

      I haven’t said no to a sequel, but nothing is brewing in my head as of yet. I always tell readers to feel free to email me their ideas to see if it sparks something! :)

      Reply

  3. Rob

    Finished “Social Skills” on my Kindle about three weeks ago, and after reading “Silent” (Kindle) and ordering “Pure Vida” (paperback) from Amazon, I’m now revisiting “Social Skills” for a second time through the paperback that I also ordered from Amazon. I guess you could say I have discovered a new favorite author.

    Sarah, you have an amazing knack for dialog and for observing how people really behave. The way you delve into the humanity of your characters by just letting them be who they are makes me think of Jane Austen. You never over-write a scene. As a result, people like Connor, Jared, and Rebecca become alive on the page.

    With your work I’m sure you are touching thousands of lives in all sorts of wonderful ways. Thank you for all you do for your many fans!

    Reply

    • Sara

      Apologies for the late reply– never got notification of this comment.

      Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts– I am honored that you think so highly of my writing. I generally think of myself as a ‘quiet’ writer in that I go for everyday moments over a lot of drama/action (although I love to read/watch both those genres!) so it’s really great to hear that it’s appreciated. :)

      Reply

  4. Corey

    I laughed, cried (several times), cringed, cheered, panicked and sighed with both frustration and elation. Now that I’m finished with Social Skills all I can say is that I am simply awestruck. Thank you for sharing Conner and Jared with us.

    Reply

    • Sara

      Somehow I was only being notified of spam comments, boo!, so I missed this. Thank you for the kind words, and I’m so glad you enjoyed Connor and Jared!

      Reply

      • Corey

        Just finished reading Social Skills for the 3rd time. I think I’ve found one of those rare go-to books that I’ve heard mention of. A Book that you can revisit regularly. Characters that you can reconnect with a little bit differently each time. Situations you can relate to. A huge, amazing roller coaster of emotions that ends with a kiss under the stars. Each time my jaded, cynical heart beats a little faster and warms a little more. That gives me hope. Until next time…

        Reply

        • Sara

          <3 Thank you for sharing this!

          Reply

  5. Kian Fong

    I love ” Social Skills”. Would you consider a sequel ? I would love to see the characters of Jared and Connor again.

    Reply

    • Sara

      Apologies for the late reply! Yes, I would consider a sequel. But I’d need the right idea to strike. Suggestions? 😛

      Reply

      • Josh Bilger

        While I’d very much second the notion to see a second (or ten millionth) one – I would be devastated if it read forced and didn’t live to the same appeal Social Skills did. (Nothing personal with you, but I’ve read a few series where there was a clamor for more and the author delivered work that left much to be desired).

        Theoretically… You could create some tension between Connor and parents, but Jared’s mom was cool with it, Connor’s parents didn’t disown him and they had their more or less happily ever after. But what happened after? I’d love to see them older, hearing a new chapter of their life. Are they still together? Did something happen? Are they not together but still friends? Do they land jobs on opposite sides of the country and have to figure out how to make it work? Do they fall out of love? Is it a decade later and they’ve adopted kids? All of the above (over several books!?)

        Personally, I’d most like to see them deal with every day problems you find in any relationship now that they’re out. Some homophobia sure, but things like stress of finding a job, being short on rent, balancing love and life. Maybe Jared gets hit on too much and Connor gets too jealous (or the other way around) Now that they’re out, their story isn’t about how they’re gay, it’s about the rest of their lives. Maybe senior year of college, finding jobs, dealing with the stress of everything, balancing everything. I could make a million requests, my apologies!

        And then you need to figure out how to make it a movie too! (And don’t let the director kill your work!)

        Well, as you can tell by my fantasizing about their future and the life they led, I loved the book, regardless of any continuation it may or may not hold. And it is very much something I would love to see on the big screen. I’ll be picking up Silent next! Best of luck in all that your future endeavors hold :)

        Reply

  6. Kathy Cherryholmes

    This is such a sweet story. I just loved it!!!!! Please write more like it. I LOVE mm college romance stories, especially when boys are so opposite, but find that one person who loves HIM for just for being HIM.

    Reply

  7. Phil

    Thank you very much for this amazing book! It’s my favorite book of the last ten years and I’m listening to the audiobook for the fourth time this year. I love it so much!!! All characters are so incredibly authentic, even the minor ones, as if they were my friends in real-life.

    I more than appreciated the way you used music to describe Connor’s emotional state, and though I knew most of the pieces you mentioned already, I discovered new gems of classical music that are now amongst my favorites. Probably that’s one of the reasons why that book spoke to me that much. But also, because I could relate to Connor’s thoughts throughout the whole book. There was one case for example, when he commented on what Jared said and then scolded himself immediately for saying “something obvious”, though that’s exactly what other, “regular” people would expect. I loved how you used these little things to portrait Connor’s ongoing inner conflict/anxiety, and I immediately thought: “Connor, I hear you!” That guy is so lovable.

    Please give my regards to the narrator, Andrew Eiden, who did a wonderful job reading it. His voice work was so good that I immediately knew who was talking at what time. Plus, he read it in a way that he made me feel as if he read it just for me instead of reading it for a microphone. I don’t know how to better describe how great was the immersion. In addition, I think his voice suits Connor very well. If you ever write a sequel, be it a full book or a short story, Andrew Eiden needs to read it.

    So, in summary, a wonderful book with a sensitive, yet profound story, an intelligent writing style, and (if you have the audiobook) a perfectly matched narrator. Thanks again!!

    Oh, and did I mention how much I love the book?

    Reply

  8. Ellis

    Wow, this was a great read. I loved the characters, and I thought their development was very believable. I’m aspiring to be an author one day (well, actually, I primarily want to be an anthropologist!), and I really look up to your writing style. This was one of the only things I’ve read where the more erotic scenes didn’t sound awkward or silly to me.

    The main reason I’m commenting, though is because of Connor’s mom. I’m guessing you’ve had direct contact with someone who acts like that, because it’s something someone can’t easily understand if they haven’t. I don’t have a degree or anything, but I’m pretty sure my mom is a strange case of OCPD/BPD comorbidity. Connor’s mom reminded me strongly of my mom’s OCPD traits; is she supposed to have OCPD or another similar personality disorder? Either way, I’m very glad that you included a character like that… I haven’t read any other book with such a realistic portrayal of a verbally abusive (but still seemingly caring) mother who isn’t an absolute wacko. Like when Connor was afraid his mom would come back around for another lecture… That was such a strikingly familiar scene to me. I’ve been in his shoes so many times, and it almost made me cry.

    Honestly, I think your representation of mental illnesses is even more important than that of homosexuality! Social anxiety, ambiguous OCPD, and schizophrenia (I so called it). It’s truly impressive.

    This is a great book. I look forward to reading other works by you!

    Reply

  9. MiRinda

    I LOVED SOCIAL SKILLS! I’ve probably read it 50 times and it never gets old! It’s so sweet and loving that you can’t help but get swept in to the journey. Connor is awkward and adorable, Jared is handsome and so confident it’s almost too sweet when they find eachother! I love them as a couple, and I definitely loved Jareds jealously and protectiveness over Connor! I wish this book had been longer, or maybe even one day a sequel!
    PLEASE WRITE A SEQUEL! ❤️❤️❤️
    This book was amazing! I loved every minute of this book! EVERY. SINGLE. MINUTE!

    Reply

Leave a Reply to Josh Bilger Cancel

*