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Posts Tagged: Sports: Football

Monday, March 14, 2016

Review: Sacked by Jen Frederick

Posted by Irish in 2 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Sacked by Jen FrederickSacked by Jen Frederick
Series: Gridiron,
Published by Self-Published on 06 September 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Love & Romance, New Adult, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 300
Format: eBook
Source: Gift
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
two-stars

Place(s) Traveled To: Unknown, America

First Line(s): I don’t see her until I’m three quarters of the way up the stands.

***Warning: This review may contain spoilers.***

As a lover of the sportsing romances I had high hopes for SACKED by Jen Frederick especially as it was a book that a lot of people were talking about. Which, as you know, I often have mixed feelings on. I liked the premise of SACKED, with the hero being a virgin as its not a common one in romances. Even though I’ve read a few with this trope I do still find it refreshing although I couldn’t help but roll my eyes often when it came to Knox Masters. This is a guy who hasn’t dated much and has focused on school and football but within moments of meeting Ellie he’s convinced that she’s THE ONE and that she’s worthy of his heart, his virginity, and is the key to his happily ever after. It was just a bit too much too soon and just a little too unbelievable.

Then there was Ellie, who was shackled to her brother and was forced to follow him everywhere, sit in on his classes and even to do his coursework. It was maddening and it made no sense and I don’t get why Ellie did it all. Especially since her brother could be a bit of a dick and her parents were the absolute worst. They give helicopter parenting a whole new name. I also found Ellie to be a bit abrasive herself at times and just never really bought her relationship with Knox. The two just didn’t have much in the way chemistry and their entire conflict comes from a complete and utter failure to communicate. And we all know how much that bugs me in books. When the entire thing can be solved by talking it just frustrates me when the characters do anything but.

Sacked Quote

Another thing that bugged me about SACKED was how dismissive it was of community colleges. As if a community college was less and inferior to a 4 year university. When some of the more challenging classes I took in my college career were at a community college. The portrayal of college life in general in SACKED also didn’t ring true and it just frustrated me throughout the book and took me out of the story.

SACKED wasn’t a bad book but it wasn’t a book for me. The writing was good and but there was just so much that bothered me about it that I couldn’t fully enjoy it. I do plan on checking out Frederick’s next book in the series, JOCK BLOCKED, as I do sometimes have better luck as a series goes. After all that’s what happened with Kristen Callihan’s Game On series. While this book wasn’t for me I do know many who loved it so if you like the sportsing romances than definitely give this one a shot.

 

irishdarkblue

IR - Sacked

 

Add The Game Plan by Kristen Callihan to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add The Shameless Hour by Sarina Bowen to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

two-stars
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Friday, March 11, 2016

Review: Double Full by Kindle Alexander

Posted by Irish in 2 Stars, Adult, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Double Full by Kindle AlexanderDouble Full by Kindle Alexander
Series: Nice Guys,
Also in this series: Full Disclosure, Full Domain
Published by Self-Published on 08 October 2013
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Family, GLBT, Love & Romance, Mystery & Detective, New Adult, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues
Pages: 275
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Goodreads
two-stars
Also by this author: Full Disclosure, Full Domain

Place(s) Traveled To: Austin, Texas (2003, 2012, 2013) // New York, New York (2012) // Kauai, Hawaii (2003, 2013)

First Line(s): Jace gripped the side of the locker, his knuckles turning white as he dropped his head inside the open metal frame.

***Warning: Contains Spoilers…Read at your own risk***

I’m the sort of girl who likes to read a series in order, even if its a companion series. I like to follow a characters journey from their first introduction all the way through their HEA and if we are lucky what happens when their story ends. So when I stumbled on a book that intrigued me called FULL DOMAIN by Kindle Alexander and learned it was a series I knew I had to track down the first book DOUBLE FULL. DOUBLE FULL is a bit like two stories rolled into one. It begins in 2003 and covers much of Colt and Jace’s early years. We learn that Colt was a bit of a stalker of the openly out Jace throughout college until he makes his move at the end of their senior year. They have a quick, whirlwind relationship and fall in love though Colt is adamant to keep things on the DL. Jace is conflicted on this but loves Colt and so agrees. Then some WTFery happens and Colt abandons Jace without a word and they don’t interact again until 10 years later.

In the decade they were apart Colt has fallen into alcoholism and various other poor life choices including acquiring a conniving bitchy fiance who is find having 3-somes and 4-somes and having her future father-in-law watching kiss a girl and have sex with a man not her fiance but is not ok with pictures and newspaper articles of Jace. These she uses to blackmail Colt into doing her bidding and me to want to toss my kindle across the room. But the WTFery of DOUBLE FULL doesn’t end there. There is this random act of violence near the end that lands Colt in the hospital that turns out to be not so random and its just….Como say what now???

Double Full Quote

Seriously. This book was just now good. It was readable but I seriously thought that my eyes might roll out of my head. Colt was essentially a stalker of Jace but Jace was ok with that as Colt was just so dreamy. And even when Colt showed up without a word on his vacation doorstep Jace forgave so easily. Colt barely got out “I’m sorry I was a dick” before they were both declaring their love once again and saying that this time everything would be different. *insert many heavy sighs of frustration here* DOUBLE FULL is just over the top and full on cheese fest and even with the big mystery that it became I just couldn’t take it very seriously.

And yet, despite all that I disliked there was something addictive about this story. Not to mention that I was intrigued by the character of Mitch who we are introduced to near the end of DOUBLE FULL and who is uber important as he gets his own POV. While I didn’t like that he had his POV randomly thrust into the story I was intrigued by him. Which is why I found myself downloading FULL DISCLOSURE almost immediately after finishing DOUBLE FULL. Sure I could be in for another terrible WTF-ery read but there is always the possibility of something magical to happen.

irishdarkblue

 People Who Liked This Book Better Than I Did

Shh Mom’s Reading – “There were times during this story my heart hurt, literally ached for these men. It was amazing to me that Ms. Alexander was able to make my heart ache for both men at times during this book. The range of emotions she gets the reader to feel in this book truly speaks to what a wonderful talent Ms. Alexnader has for storytelling.”

Scandalicious Book Reviews – “Kindle Alexander does a fantastic job at creating the conflict in this story and again, it didn’t play out how I expected.  She does an excellent job of character development that will send you on a rollercoaster of emotions.  You can’t help but love Jace and Colt and suffer their heartbreak right along with them.”

Paddylast Inc – “I was also totally hooked with Mitch whom the author introduced in the latter part of the book (whom I supposed will be the main character for the second book of the series. Yay!) without actually swaying too much from Colt and Jace. What an impressive transitioning ability!”

IR - Double Full

Add Heartbreaker by Julie Garwood to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add Yours All Along by Roni Loren to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

two-stars
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Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Review: The Baller by Vi Keeland

Posted by Irish in 3.5 Stars, Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: The Baller by Vi KeelandThe Baller by Vi Keeland
Series: Down and Dirty Football,
Published by Self-Published on 18 January 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Love & Romance, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 300
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-half-stars

Place(s) Traveled To: New York, New York // Unknown, Texas // Tampa, Florida // Miami, Florida // Unknown, Maryland

First Line(s): My boss was a world-class dick.

THE BALLER by Vi Keeland was one of those books that appeared on my radar when it seemed like everyone I knew was discussing it. Everywhere I turned there were people excited for this book and as I do love a good sportsing themed romance I decided to give it a try. In the end, I had kind of a love/hate relationship with THE BALLER because while I adored the banter of Delilah and Brody there were all these little things that just kept taking me out of the story. And that doesn’t even include the various sportsball things that they got wrong as I missed the bulk of those but I did hear about them from friends.

As I said, I adored Delilah and Brody and those two often had me cracking up. Their chemistry was off the charts and I loved watched them get their flirt on. I liked how they built up a bit of relationship first before jumping in the sack and felt that their story progression was realistic. Even with the crazy baggage the two of them were carrying. Because oy with the poodles did they each have some issues! And with those issues came all these cryptic references…and y’all know how I love those. Delilah’s though were ones that I felt with should have been dealt with a few years prior but we all deal with grief in different ways so I’ll give her a moderate pass but feel like therapy would have done wonders. Brody’s thing though…oy…that’s a horse of different color.

The Baller Quote

With Brody, I adored his relationship with Marlene and the sweet and caring side that we all knew was lurking underneath that cocky bastard. But what I didn’t like was Willow. Not so much her character but that we were suddenly (and oh so randomly) thrust into her POV mid-way through the book. It was jarring and I didn’t like. Her POVs didn’t add to the story. They didn’t make me feel any sort of sympathy for her and I just wanted them to go away. For all they did was to take me out of the story and I didn’t not like that.

THE BALLER was also filled with lots of little continuity issues and while I can sometimes ignore them in an ARC I can’t do that as well in a finished book. And the more they happened the more they took me out of the story. It became harder to just sit and bask in the goodness of Delilah and Brody when this Chinese Water Torture kept happening! Then there was that epilogue. Blergh. I won’t say much but if you’ve heard my rant on epilogues then know it holds true here. And no, I probably still haven’t learned my lesson to not read epilogues.

THE BALLER was my first book by Vi Keeland and while I’m not going to rush out to read her backlist I will read other things by her. While things weren’t perfect in THE BALLER I think that Keeland has promise and even with all the little things that bugged me her story still made my heart ache. I still became invested in the main story that she wrote about and for that she’ll be on my author to watch list.

irishdarkblue

IR - The Baller

 

Add The Perfect Play by Jaci Burton to Goodreads(Click here for my review.)

Add The Score by Elle Kennedy to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

three-half-stars
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Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Review: The Game Plan by Kristen Callihan

Posted by Irish in 3.5 Stars, Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: The Game Plan by Kristen CallihanThe Game Plan by Kristen Callihan
Series: Game On,
Also in this series: The Hook Up, The Friend Zone
Published by Self-Published on 01 Nov 2015
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Love & Romance, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 323
Source: Publicist
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-half-stars
Also by this author: The Hook Up, The Friend Zone

Place(s) Traveled To: New Orleans, Louisiana // San Francisco, California

First Line(s): Sweat trickles down my spine.

THE GAME PLAN by Kristen Callihan is the third book in her Game On series and follows football player Ethan Dexter who we first meet in THE HOOK UP (my review). Dex’s love interest is Fiona who is the sister of Ivy from THE FRIEND ZONE (my review) and they meet because Dex is BFFs with Gray. Dex was instantly attracted to Fi and has waited over two years before making a move on her. Fi is energetic and flighty and the timing was just never really right for her and Dex, until now. I loved Dex. He was just so sweet and lovable and I adored how steadfast he was. Fi on the other hand was all over the map going from one extreme to another and I often wanted to shake her. It made it hard to hope for them to find a happily ever after when it was hard to believe that her feelings were real.

THE GAME PLAN was a quick read, for the most part, but there were parts that seemed to drag and it was just filled with so much unnecessary drama. Oh, I do expect some drama as that is part of the formula for new adult/adult story lines but THE GAME PLAN just had it in excess. Thankfully there were some fun cameos with my favorites, Gray and Ivy to help even out some of the rough patches. Gray and Dex’s friendship is just so fun and genuine that I could read a book about just the two of them and be happy.

Game Plan Quote

Plot wise we have the unusual twist of Dex being the virgin and I just have to say that I do so love this in a book. Not that I want to read it all the time but it can make for a fun story arc. Though I do wish that the same stereotypes that befell woman when they are a virgin happened here. Although as a plot line this wasn’t really the main focus of the story and I did get frustrated with Fi at times because of it. Fi is a big part of what keeps me from being head over heels for THE GAME PLAN because of her attitude and there were times when I didn’t get why Dex was so devoted to her. Though at the time that is the sort of dedication that many people want in a relationship so that is part of why we fall for Dex and why we want his relationship to work with Fi.

I don’t know if there will be more books in the GAME ON series but I will read anything that Kristen Callihan writes. While I may not have fully enjoyed THE HOOK UP I think that Callihan’s writing has grown with each novel. I like the humor that can be found in her stories and how real her characters can seem. If you like a good sports romance then you may want to give the GAME ON series a try. They are quick, fun reads, and a great way to escape reality for a couple of hours during these long cold, winter months.

 

irishdarkblue

IR - Game Plan

Add All of You by Christina Lee to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add The Shameless Hour by Sarina Bowen to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

three-half-stars
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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Review: First & Then by Emma Mills

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, Review, Young Adult0 Comments

Review: First & Then by Emma MillsFirst & Then by Emma Mills
Published by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) on 13 October 2015
Genres: Adaptation, Contemporary Romance, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Friendship, Love & Romance, Parents, Sports & Athletics, Young Adult
Pages: 272
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars

Place(s) Traveled To: Temple Sterling, Florida // Reeding, South Carolina

First Line(s): My college essay was titled “School Lunches, TS High, and Me,” and it was every bit as terrible as you’d expect.

When I hear that a book is an adaptation of a Jane Austen novel I am both excited and wary not unlike how I feel when Hollywood announces that it will be making a movie out of a favorite read. This is how I felt went I began Emma Mill’s book FIRST & THEN which is based off PRIDE & PREJUDICE, one of my favorite Jane Austen books. (Though much like Devon all Austen books can be my favorite when I read them.) I really enjoyed the character of Devon, even though there were times when I wanted to shake her. FIRST & THEN like so many other books suffers from a lack of character communication and that just frustrates me to no end. This frustration could also be passed on to Ezra who also could have benefited from talking more. But much like Mr Darcy, Ezra definitely falls into the broody, silent type category.

Frustrations aside though I really adored this story. I enjoyed the secondary characters and how both Devon and Ezra interacted with Foster. Foster was adorable and I just loved all the scenes that he was in. I could have done without Devon’s crush on Cas and some of that whole plot line but it was realistic though I do feel that it went on too long in this book. I also wasn’t a fan of how Cas dealt with it all and I seriously could have smacked him at times. But have I mentioned how much I liked Devon and Ezra? Because I did. And I enjoyed how this story played out. FIRST & THEN was a quick read and I finished it in rapid time because once I picked it up I hated to put it down. While its not a perfect book it definitely was the right book for me in that moment that I read it.

First & Then Quote

On thing I did wish in this book was that there was more to the relationship of Ezra and Devon. I get that its a PRIDE & PREJUDICE retelling and Mills really followed that story line well but I wanted more kissing! I wish that there was more to the story so we could see Ezra and Devon as a couple because so much of the book was spent with them apart and being all angsty and in like with each other. This is where communication skills really could have helped the situation. Although, this again is reflective of real life as humans often have trouble talking about feelings with other humans.

Overall, I thought that FIRST & THEN was smart and funny and I loved how it was written. This is a great modern adaptation for PRIDE & PREJUDICE and I think it will appeal to fans of that story as well as those who have never read a Jane Austen novel. There is a simplicity to this story that works well and makes a good escape from the every day. FIRST & THEN is a feel good novel that will make your heart ache (in that way that I love) and will leave you with a smile on your face. This is a book that I know I’ll be reading more than once and this is an author that I am looking forward to reading more books from.

irishdarkblue

IR - First & Then

 

Add Play On by Michelle Smith to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add Trouble From the Start by Rachel Hawthorne to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

four-stars
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Monday, August 17, 2015

Review: The Friend Zone by Kristen Callihan

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review1 Comment

Review: The Friend Zone by Kristen CallihanThe Friend Zone by Kristen Callihan
Series: Game On, Book 2
Also in this series: The Hook Up, The Game Plan
Published by Self-Published on 05 May 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Friends to Lovers, Friendship, Love & Romance, New Adult, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 309
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: The Hook Up, The Game Plan

Place(s) Traveled To: Unknown, Georgia // New Orleans, Louisiana // San Francisco, California

First Line(s): Mr Grayson, my father tells me he lent you my car.

Regular readers may recall that I did not like Kristen Callihan’s first book in the Game On series and so you might wonder why I picked up book 2. Well, friends, let’s just say that I am a glutton for punishment sometimes and I couldn’t help but being curious about Gray’s story after meeting him in THE HOOK UP (my review). I walked into THE FRIEND ZONE with pretty low expectations and fully expecting to mark it as a DNF. For if this book annoyed me even half as much as THE HOOK UP there was no way that I was going to torture myself by finishing it. However, instead of another frustrating read I found myself really invested in this story. I adored Gray’s character and loved the chemistry that he had with Ivy. I liked that they started as friends first and had a good solid foundation with which to build on before becoming something more.

These two totally made my heart ache and made me feel all the feels. THE FRIEND ZONE totally slayed me at times with all the push and pull between Gray and Ivy. While they were good friends these two certainly had their ups and downs as they struggled between remaining friends or maybe pushing things into something more. Of course, it didn’t help that Gray was a bit of a manwhore before he met Ivy and so that gave her some added insecurities. Fortunately, despite some miscommunications along the way these two were able to find their way to a happily ever after.

Friend Zone Quote

Another thing that I enjoyed about THE FRIEND ZONE was that Gray wasn’t your typical dumb jock. He was in fact very smart and loved math and played football mostly for the love of the game. I loved how he loved numbers and how Callihan worked that love into the story. I loved that Gray and Ivy dealt with some serious issues and managed to come out on top. Their story was one that totally sucked me in and refused to let me go until I reached the final page. Its amazing just how different that I felt with THE FRIEND ZONE from the THE HOOK UP. Its almost as if they were written by two different people even though I know that is not the case.

I fell hard for THE FRIEND ZONE and think that there is much in it for others to love as well. I liked the secondary characters, even the brief appearances by Drew and Anna from THE HOOK UP. THE FRIEND ZONE has totally redeemed Callihan as an author for me and now I am really looking forward to the next book in the series, THE GAME PLAN (Goodreads). Even though a part of me keeps telling myself that I should keep my expectations low in case the magic of THE FRIEND ZONE can’t be duplicated again. But even if it isn’t than I will always have Gray and Ivy’s story and I know that this is one in which I’ll re-read again in the future.

irishdarkblue

IR - Friend Zone

 

Add The Mistake by Elle Kennedy to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add All Broke Down by Cora Carmack to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

four-stars
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Monday, May 4, 2015

Review: All Played Out by Cora Carmack

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: All Played Out by Cora CarmackAll Played Out by Cora Carmack
Series: Rusk University,
Also in this series: All Lined Up, All Broke Down
Published by William Morrow on 12 May 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, Love & Romance, New Adult, People of Color, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 320
Format: eBook
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: All Lined Up, All Broke Down

Place(s) Traveled To: Unnamed, Texas

First Line(s): There’s a half-naked man in my kitchen.

All Played Out is the latest book in Cora Carmack’s Rusk University series and features characters that we’ve met in previous books, Nell and Torres. Nell is the roommate of Dylan who we meet in All Broke Down (my review) and Mateo Torres is another player on the Rusk University football team. Nell is shy and quiet and very focused and the complete opposite of Torres who is loud and vibrant and the life of the party. But you know what they say, opposites attract and these two are drawn together like moths to a flame. They are further brought together when Nell makes a list of things that she wants to do before she graduates. Nell decides she’s been a little too focused on school and wants to live a little of the typical college life before starting grad school. When Torres finds the list he decides to help her out because he wants to get to know this shy girl that he can’t stop thinking of a little better.

At first, I wasn’t sure about Nell and Torres as a pairing they just seemed so opposite of each other but the more the narrative moved into each of their heads and we get to know them you see that Nell and Torres are pretty perfect for each other. Nell and Torres really compliment each other and they help bring out the best traits in the other person. Torres helps Nell’s confidence and to be more outgoing and Nell helps to anchor Torres. These two characters often hurt my heart during their journey towards their HEA and I found myself rushing to flip the pages needing to see how it would all work out.

All Played Out Quote

As with most romances, All Played Out, will often fall back onto a common cliche or trope and there where times when those things would make me roll my eyes a little. There was the break up and unnecessary drama, like when Dylan would try to convince Nell not to hang out with Torres as she was a ‘good girl’ and he was a ‘bad boy’. Which just made me roll my eyes as the same was said during All Broke Down and if Dylan had listened to those people then she and Silas wouldn’t have had a story. Overall though, I liked the fire and the humor between Nell and Torres. I liked how they were each flawed and how they were both better people when they were together.

All Played Out is a fun story and one that can be read independently of the others in the series. As of now, All Broke Down, is still my favorite (Silas <3) but Torres is a close second. There is just so much heart in these male leads and it just makes your heart ache as you watch them fall for their ladies. All Played Out is a quick read and one that I’d recommend to anyone looking to read new adult. Its well written and plotted and yes there are cliches but sometimes in life there are cliches so its also real and heart felt. I really enjoyed this book and I am looking forward to the next installment in the Rusk University series.

irishdarkblue

IR - All Played Out

Add Scoring Wilder by RS Grey to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add The Deal by Elle Kennedy to Goodreads. (Review coming soon)

four-stars
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Thursday, March 12, 2015

Review: The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan

Posted by Irish in 2 Stars, New Adult, Review2 Comments

Review: The Hook Up by Kristen CallihanThe Hook Up by Kristen Callihan
Series: Game On,
Also in this series: The Friend Zone, The Game Plan
Published by Self-Published on 07 September 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Love & Romance, New Adult, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 353
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
two-stars
Also by this author: The Friend Zone, The Game Plan

Place(s) Traveled To: Unnamed, Georgia

First Line(s): I’m late, and its the first day of class.

Its no secret that I have fully embraced the New Adult category of books and am always looking new books in this genre. Not long ago when I mentioned I was looking for something to read several people in my twitter stream recommended to me Kristen Callihan’s The Hook Up. The Hook Up started off rough with me as there was insta-lust and then the male lead was a bit of a jackass and I didn’t find Anna to be very likable either. Characters are the core of any store and while I know that not all main characters are likeable there should be something to them that makes me care about their story. And that never materialized in this book.

Not only were the main characters unlikable but so where many of the secondary characters. I swear if I’d had a print version of this story then I totally would have tossed it across the room. Several times. The characters just made stupid choices and then moped about them. They pinned and angsted and moped when it was their choice to do what they did. When a simple phone call with a real conversation would have cleared everything up quickly. But no, instead they jumped to conclusions, were given poor advice and just annoyed the ever loving crap out of me.

Hook Up Quote

The timeline in this book also didn’t really mesh well with how events played out and I was surprised that when I hit the end of the story that so little time had actually passed from that initial meeting to the grand finale. There were also way to many spelling and other errors for me that should not have been in a finished book which kept pulling me out of the story.

In the end, The Hook Up  wasn’t for me and I am not sure if I’ll read Callihan’s other books in this series either. There was just too much whiny angst and cliches in this story for me. Plus the unlikability of the two main characters just made this one a difficult one to finish. But I did finish it, so there is that. There was some promise to this story and I kept reading it in the hopes that me frustrations with the story would all be worth it in the end. Alas, that never happened.

irishdarkblue

IR - The Hook UP

Add All Broke Down by Cora Carmack to Goodreads (Click here for my review.)

Add Scoring Wilder by RS Grey to Goodreads (Click here for my reivew.)

two-stars
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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Review: Covering Kendall by Julie Brannagh

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Covering Kendall by Julie BrannaghCovering Kendall by Julie Brannagh
Series: Love and Football,
Also in this series: Blitzing Emily, Rushing Amy, Catching Cameron
Published by Avon on 21 October 2014
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Love & Romance, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 368
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Blitzing Emily, Rushing Amy, Catching Cameron

Place(s) Traveled To: Seattle, Washington // Bellevue, Washington // Santa Clara, California

First Line(s): Drew McCoy dodged pouring rain as he darted through a puddle-infested parking lot and into the entrance of the biggest bookstore in Bellevue.

Covering Kendall by Julie Brannagh is the fourth book in her Love & Football series and while it does involve the Seattle Sharks football team can almost be read as an independent story as there is almost no mention/interaction of the previous characters. In this story Drew McCoy of the Sharks meets up with Kendall Tracy who is the GM of a rival team, which is something that they don’t know at first. There are sparks and I think that its going to be a really juicy story but somewhere along the way it just sort of fizzles out.

I liked Drew and Kendall and I liked their story and I am every so glad that there wasn’t a random subplot where everyone focused on the heroine’s uterus or her weight as with the previous installments. It was a quick read that I essentially read in less than a day so I was involved with the plot but there was just something missing that I can’t quite put my finger on. There were also some random inconsistancies that just took me out of the plot. Like how the Sharks played Dallas back to back (at home and then away) and even this non-football watcher knows that is a no-go. Although I did read an ARC so its possible that all these little inconsistencies that bothered me were corrected in the final version. Many times I’ll grab a copy of that final book to check but I just don’t care enough about this story to do so.

Covering Kendall Quote

 

As I said above, I read this quickly and I liked the forbidden love aspect of the story but it just seemed like the two main characters put way more stress upon themselves than needed. Then, of course, there was the pointless breakup leading to angst and moping before they get back together for their HEA. And boy what an eye-rolling HEA did they have. It was just so cliched and forced and a little too perfect to feel real. I get that with a romance there is some suspension of belief, there is that wish fulfillment that every reader wants in that perfect ending. But you can have a good satisfying ending without getting overly cheesy at the same time.

For me, I think that my love affair with the Love and Football series might be waning. Each book just gets to be a little less enjoyable for me and so I am unsure if this is a series that I will continue with or not. Though I will keep my eye out for other stories by Julie Brannagh as I did really enjoy the first book in this series.

irishdarkblue

 

IR - Covering Kendall
three-stars
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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Review: Rushing Amy by Julie Brannagh

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Rushing Amy by Julie BrannaghRushing Amy by Julie Brannagh
Series: Love and Football, Book 2
Also in this series: Blitzing Emily, Catching Cameron, Covering Kendall
Published by Avon on 11 February 2014
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Friendship, Love & Romance, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance
Pages: 448
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Blitzing Emily, Catching Cameron, Covering Kendall

Place(s) Traveled To: Seattle, Washington // Cannon Beach, Oregon

First Line(s): The wedding was over, and Amy Hamilton stood amongst the wreckage.

Rushing Amy is the follow up to Julie Brannagh’s Blitzing Emily and involves Emily’s younger sister, Amy. Amy runs a flowshop and its through her buisness that Emily meets her one true love Brandon. In Rushing Amy, Emily returns the favor (so to speak) by being the catalyst for Amy to meet her love interest, Matt. Matt is a former teammate and a friend of Brandon’s and he and Amy meet at the wedding of Emily and Brandon. Its a bit of a cliched meeting place but it works for this story. While the overall story of Rushing Amy was a cute, quick read there were things that bothered me with it.

My biggest issue was with how everyone seemed so overly concerened with Amy’s ovaries. A conversation about how old she was getting and how she needed to have babies soon or never seemed to pop up in almost every chapter. She would think it and others would comment on it and it just added this weird, creepy vibe to the whole story. One example of this is when Matt’s daughter tells Amy that she can’t break up with her dad because she wants siblings…um…seriously?? Ugh! This is 2014 not 1814 a woman’s main purpose in life and the source of all her happiness isn’t in having babies. I liked how Amy was focused on setting up her business and making it work but that strength of hers, her smarts and business sense was always overshadowed with talk of her baby making capabilites.

Matt also annoyed me a bit in how he wanted to take care of Amy buy tossing money at her and all of her problems. I get that he wanted to help but he never listened to what she wanted he just bulldozed in with what he wanted and her feelings be damned. Most of the time he was sweet and I liked that he was such a giving soul but listening is such an attactive skill and so few people seem to possess it. Amy and Matt could have avoided the whole pointless breakup if Matt just listened to her issues, provided advice when asked and then let her handle things how she wanted to handle them.

I enjoyed Rushing Amy but I didn’t think that it was as cute as Blitzing Emily. The issues mentioned above just took me out of the story and made me want to shake all the characters involved. I wanted them to find their HEA but at the same time they annoyed me enough that there were times when I didn’t care if they reached that point or not. There also wasn’t enough Brandon and Emily in this story and when they were there they didn’t seem like the same characters from the first book. I will continue to read this series but as of this posting I don’t think that Rushing Amy will be a book that I ever re-read.

irishdarkblue

Rushing Amy Quote

three-stars
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