Genre fiction lover: Romance, Sci Fi, Fantasy, Mystery, Urban Fantasy
As I was reading the first chapter of this book, I wasn't sure if I would like it. It was basically an info dump. Lots of inner thinking by the heroine, Danica. Lots of telling us about her. I fervently hoped the book would not continue in this vein.
Luckily it didn't and the story smoothed out nicely. I began to really enjoy it once Danica and Dex entered each others orbit on the page. Their interaction and chemistry was the strong point of the book. She is front office, the GM of the football team and the person who just fired him. He is talent, a hard partying ex-quarterback who is now battling for his reputation amidst allegations of game fixing.
The basic conflict between them is well constructed and offers up believable tension and potential romantic obstruction. I also liked that from a basic personality standpoint they were really different. I swear if Danica took the Meyers-Briggs, she'd probably be typed at an ISTJ. She is responsible, capable, focused and able to easily handle situations of stress. She's also intensely loyal.
Meanwhile, Dex would be more like an ESTP. Funny and charming, yet works hard. Communicates directly, no hidden agenda, an easy going risk taker who also liked to live in the moment. But more than anything he just loved football.
Really the two of them together was the best part of the book.
The other thing I really liked was that football wasn't just wallpaper or a forgettable backdrop for the story. When I read a sports romance, I like for the romance to also include a good amount of the sport. Otherwise, what's the point? The plot outside of the romance was all about running a football team and in Danica's case also about trying to rehab Dex's rep. Her family not only owned the franchise but were hands-on owners that added to the conflict. The football was included enough to give realistic flavor to the story yet did not swallow the narrative.
Which brings me to the part about the book that didn't work so well for me. Danica's family was messy enough and interesting enough that they added some layers to the story. And yet... I got impatient with them and the little subplot regarding her ex-husband. His got a few POV's that felt intrusive and I found myself wondering what his motives were? I don't think it got answered necessarily well. Also, everybody seemed waaay to preoccupied with her single state.
Otoh, Dex's family backstory was very intriguing and yet the author didn't explore it as much as I would have liked.
On the whole, this was a smartly written book with the romantic relationship being the highlight.
Review is based on an e-Arc provided by author