Tag Archives: sports

Author Showcase – Jaci Burton (Mistletoe Games, A Play-by-Play Anthology)

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Holiday Games
For the high-achieving Elizabeth and her husband, baseball player Gavin Riley, failure is not an option. So when it comes to making a baby, they’re not about to let any holiday distractions get in the way of their necessary pleasures…
 
Holiday on Ice
It’s the season for giving and superstar hockey player Patrick “Trick” Niemeyer is ready to give dancer Stella Slovinski his heart wrapped up in bow. But he’ll have to melt the ice surrounding her heart to keep her from walking away…
 
Hot Holiday Nights
Christmas in Hawaii brings sports agent Tori Baldwin two presents: a young surfer at the top of his game and his business manager. But this hot threesome has to decide if the romantic wave they’ve caught is nothing more than a vacation fling, or the kind of love that could change their lives forever…

 

Three Sneak Peeks!

 

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From Holiday Games

 

Not Pregnant.

Liz Riley sat in her bathroom, crushing disappointment tightening her stomach as she stared at the pregnancy test.

Not pregnant. Again.

Her period was three days late. She’d been so certain this time.

Dammit. The word failure wasn’t in her lexicon. She’d always succeeded, usually found a way to get what she wanted. Even when faced with a temporary roadblock, she wrangled her way around it and won. She was one of the best sports agents in the business, and always got what she wanted.

But that was business, and this was personal. For the past year, she’d tried—and failed—numerous times to get pregnant.

She tossed the stick into the trash and stared at herself in the mirror.

“This sucks.”

“What sucks?”

She whirled to face her husband, Gavin, the love of her life and the only man who could have ever made her want to have a baby.

 

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From Holiday on Ice

 

Patrick “Trick” Niemeyer walked into McGill’s, his favorite after-game bar hangout, with several of his fellow players.

It had been a grueling game tonight, and they’d eked out a win by only one goal over Winnipeg. Since it was Friday night and they were on home turf, they deserved to celebrate.

“I need a drink—or three,” Drew Hogan said.

He and Drew were of like minds there, which didn’t surprise him since they were friends and had been as long as they’d both played for the New York Travelers.

“Let’s get this party started.” Trick led the way to the bar.

“How many of us are having beer?” Avery Mangino, their goalie and the main reason they’d won tonight, turned and counted as all of them raised fingers.

“Okay, that’s a half dozen.” Avery turned to the bartender, who slid bottles across.

Trick took a long draw from the bottle, then sighed. Nice and cold, like the ice had been tonight. But the crowd had been hot, and so had the game. They’d had to work hard for this win, and it had been a nail-biter all the way to the buzzer at the end of the third period.

“We need to avoid these close ones,” Avery said, leaning against the bar. “You all are going to have to score more goals next time.”

 

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From Hot Holiday Nights

 

Victoria Baldwin determined it had been six months, three days, four hours and—she looked at her phone and calculated—approximately seventeen minutes since she’d last had time off.

She was damned overdue. She normally took holidays more frequently. Working in the sports industry for fifteen years should have netted her vacation time whenever she wanted it, but being a sports agent meant that sometimes you had to work your ass off, and this had been one of those brutal kinds of years.

Not that she was complaining. Picking up a few new clients had meant an uptick in her bank account, which allowed her to take these getaways. So she’d suck it up and do the hard work when it was necessary.

And now she had three weeks off. She could already feel the stress melting away.

She’d vacationed all over the world, from Mexico to Fiji to Europe to Asia to every island in the Caribbean, but she always loved coming back to Hawaii, and especially the island of Oahu. It was the flowers. She loved the smell of the flowers here, and the staff at her favorite hotel on the north shore were incomparable.

She’d been lucky to get in on such short notice. They were booked solid for the international surfing competitions that would start in a few days. Plus it was also the Christmas holiday. But they’d made a suite available for her, knowing she was a preferred customer and she tipped very well.

She threw on her swimsuit, then put on a pair of shorts and a tank top over it, laced up her shoes, lathered up the sunscreen and grabbed her sunglasses. First item on the agenda was a run on the beach. It was the perfect way to release stress and unwind.

 

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Review of “Sizzling Frio” – Dakota G. King

Sizzling Frio mirrors the oxymoronic relationship that develops when a coed Natalie Carroll and a college football player Josh Tyler literally meet face to face on the banks of the Frio River in the Texas Hill Country. Sparks ignite, and they embark on a tempestuous ride through spiraling small town politics, Texas nightlife and Friday Night Fever, where they find the natural destiny of their love in turmoil just like the river’s many white-water runs. Although coincidental meetings in college stoke the embers still lingering from their first encounter, Josh’s desire to play professional football thwarts their union. Caution and frustration prevail; Natalie relocates; then fate intervenes several years later when an injury ends Josh’s career and they reunite to discover the attraction between them resurfacing. Can the scorching desire they share, however, overcome the mixed signals, emotional wounds, and the conniving interference of a scorned lover?

 
 
(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 
 
In the summer of 1993, Natalie and Josh both ended up spending their vacations at Frio River. A place where you can kick back and just enjoy nature, friends, and family with no electronics and no running water. Ok, the lack of running water would be a buzzkill but you still have the river to wash up in. Beggars can’t be choosers, right? 🙂
 
As for vacations go, the scenery is breath-taking and the story proved to have promise until Josh talked. The more he opened his mouth, the more I began to dislike him. 
 
He blatantly admitted to using women and their families to further his career. How anyone could think this behavior is ok/justified and not hurtful to others is beyond me.  Oh, wait until you read the proposal scene. Trust me, you won’t be saying awww. Instead, you’ll be yelling, “What an asshole!”
 
Even after a six year gap, he hadn’t changed at all. I really hoped Dakota would’ve thrown us a curveball and paired her up with Matt — permanently. 
 
For me, Josh’s lack of respect for a woman’s feelings  almost caused me to give this book a ZERO. The only reason why it scored a ONE was for the memories it stirred in me about my days swimming in murky water with my friends and family. 
 
Those were great times. 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score:
Purchase Links:  Print / Kindle
 
 
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Born and raised in south Texas, Dakota G. King began writing in 1998, using the knowledge gained from a BA in English and history from Texas State University and thirty-six years of teaching in public schools in various Texas towns. However, teaching and raising a family allowed only sporadic efforts until retirement provided the time for the challenge of writing more often. Inspired by many novelists, especially Laverle Spencer, the intricate ties of various cultures in Texas and family encounters, she felt compelled to capture the experiences from her life in Sizzling Frio, her first contemporary romance novel.

www.blackrosewriting.com

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Review of “Cleat Chaser” – Celia Aaron and Sloane Howell

 

Kyrie Kent hates baseball. She hates players even more. When her best friend drags her to a Ravens game, she spends the innings reading a book… Until she gets a glimpse of the closer—a pitcher who draws her like a magnet. Fighting her attraction to Easton Holliday is easy. All she has to do is keep her distance, avoid the ballpark, and keep her head down. At least, all that would have worked, but Easton doesn’t intend to let Kyrie walk so easily. When another player vies for Kyrie’s attention, Easton will swing for the fences. But will Kyrie strike him out or let him steal home?

Full disclosure: This is an erotic romance full of hot guys in tight baseball pants, even more guys in tight baseball pants who know how to swing a big stick, and explicit sex.

 
Amazon Purchase Links: Paperback / Kindle
 

 
 
Love at first sight or is it just lust at first glance?
 
That, my dears, is the millionth dollar question. 
 
For me, I don’t believe in love at first sight. To truly be in love, you have to know a person.
 
Those warm tingly feelings people experience when they meet someone is not love, it’s lust, infatuation, carnal desire. Pure and simple. 
 
You might call me unromantic, cynical, but actually I am a realist. I believe in real feelings which, I believe, can only come with time. 
 
In “Cleat Chaser”, Easton claims to have fallen in love with Kyrie after a week. Okay, maybe this is possible if they really spent 24-7 with each other but they didn’t. Heck for the most part, she gave him the cold shoulder. While she ignored him, Easton practically begged her to talk to him. 
 
At several points in this book, I wanted to yell, “Man the F-up!”
 
His behavior/actions were a huge turn-off. 
 
With all that said, if you take the whole lust/love aspect out of this story and solo focus on the sex, you won’t be disappointed. They were scorching, erotic scenes! 
 
However the best parts of “Cleat Chaser” involved any scene featuring Nikki, Kasey, and Braden. These three sexy, crazy, funny, wickedly kinky people kept me in stitches because they had no filter and would try anything once. 
 
Oh yeah, they are my type of people. 
 
Without them, this book would’ve scored almost nil. With them, I’ll give it 1.5 stars. 1/2 a star for each supporting actor mentioned above. 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤1/2
 
Amazon Purchase Links: Paperback / Kindle

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Review of “The Hook Up” – Kristen Callihan

The rules: no kissing on the mouth, no staying the night, no telling anyone, and above all… No falling in love.

Anna Jones just wants to finish college and figure out her life. Falling for star quarterback Drew Baylor is certainly not on her to do list. Confident and charming, he lives in the limelight and is way too gorgeous for his own good. If only she could ignore his heated stares and stop thinking about doing hot and dirty things with him. Easy right?

Too bad he’s committed to making her break every rule…

Football has been good to Drew. It’s given him recognition, two National Championships, and the Heisman. But what he really craves is sexy yet prickly Anna Jones. Her cutting humor and blatant disregard for his fame turns him on like nothing else. But there’s one problem: she’s shut him down. Completely.

That is until a chance encounter leads to the hottest sex of their lives, along with the possibility of something great. Unfortunately, Anna wants it to remain a hook up. Now it’s up to Drew to tempt her with more: more sex, more satisfaction, more time with him. Until she’s truly hooked. It’s a good thing Drew knows all about winning.

All’s fair in love and football…Game on




—–> REVIEW <—–

There are few times I can say a book surpasses my expectations. 

The Hook Up’s cover was eye-catching, the book summary piqued my interest, and the contents of the pages had me smiling and flushed on many occasions. 

Drew and Anna’s relationship had humor, anguish, and a multitude of steamy sexcapades. 

This book was damn near perfect. My only flaw with it was ………I didn’t want it to end. That ,my folks, doesn’t happen often to me. 

Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤❤
PURCHASE LINKS —–> Kindle / Paperback












Gray doesn’t make friends with women. He has sex with them. Until Ivy.

The last thing star tight-end Gray Grayson wants to do is drive his agent’s daughter’s bubblegum pink car. But he needs the wheels and she’s studying abroad. Something he explains when she sends him an irate text to let him know exactly how much pain she’ll put him in if he crashes her beloved ride. Before he knows it, Ivy Mackenzie has become his best texting bud. But then Ivy comes home and everything goes haywire. Because the only thing Gray can think of is being with Ivy.

Ivy doesn’t have sex with friends. Especially not with a certain football player. No matter how hot he makes her…

Gray drives Ivy crazy. He’s irreverent, sex on a stick, and completely off limits. Because, Ivy has one golden rule: never get involved with one of her father’s clients. A rule that’s proving harder to keep now that Gray is doing his best to seduce her. Her best friend is fast becoming the most irresistible guy she’s ever met.

Which means Gray is going to have to use all his skills to win Ivy’s heart. Game on.



BUY NOW —–> Kindle

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Review of “Under the Lights” – Shannon Stacey

They were the golden boys of fall: Stewart Mills High School’s legendary championship winning football team. Fourteen years later, they’re back to relive their glory, save the team—and find themselves again…

Chase Sanders’s life has taken a lot of crazy turns lately. But returning to his hometown to help his old coach keep his high school football team afloat might be the craziest thing to happen to him yet. That is, until he starts falling for the last person he should—Coach’s gorgeous daughter…

Kelly McDonnell learned the hard way that cocky, charming men are nothing but trouble, so she knows Chase is bad news. Still, she can’t resist his smile—or the rest of him. But when his loyalty to her father conflicts with their growing attraction, any hope for a relationship might be blocked before it can even begin…



—–> REVIEW <—–

This book depicts small town living to a tee. 

Everyone will know your business and won’t hesitate to stick their noses into it. It’s truly hard to have any secrets. 

However, the bright spot of small towns (also illustrated in this tale) is how people band together in good times and especially in bad. 

If you’ve ever lived in a small town (like myself), you know how important a single business can be and when it goes under, families go under with it. 

 In Under the Lights, friends and neighbors banded together to save a football program which to some might seem like nothing but to them it was everything. 

Again, since my school had little in the way of money, I’m glad all their hard work paid off because this town needed a win desperately. 


Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤1/2

PURCHASE LINKS —–> Paperback (US) / Kindle (US) / Amazon.ca / Amazon.co.uk




COMING OCTOBER 27, 2015

They were the golden boys of fall: Stewart Mills High School’s legendary championship football team. Fourteen years later, they’re back to relive their glory, save the team—and find themselves again…

Globetrotting photographer Alex Murphy returns to Stewart Mills for a football fundraiser, but stays to document the football team and the town’s changes. Since his project includes photos of the Walker farm, he rents a room there.

Needing money to save the family farm, Gretchen Walker doesn’t have time to deal with the sexy photographer in her house. After all, Alex is a man with no sense of home, and to her, home is everything. But when she finds herself falling for him, she’ll be forced to decide where her dreams really lie…




PURCHASE LINKS —–> Paperback or on Kindle

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Review of “Down and Out” – Kelley R. Martin

“Tattooed package of sin.”

That’s how Savannah Ryan would describe her new boss, Declan Whitmore, the deliciously tatted and pierced fighter who holds the top spot in Boston’s newest underground fighting organization. She’d also describe him as bossy, arrogant, and–depending on what he does to piss her off that particular day–an asshole.

It’s that aloof attitude, along with Savannah’s witty comebacks and tight little body that land her on his radar. Unfortunately for her, Declan is relentless when he sets his sights on someone, both in and out of the ring. Unfortunately for him, this recently reformed bad girl is trying to go straight after heading down a dangerous path. She’s not going to make this easy for him. In fact, she’s going to make it–and him–very, very hard.

Declan’s not worried, though. He’ll have Savannah come hell or high water, because if there’s one word he’d use to describe her, it’s “MINE.”



—–> REVIEW <—–

How freaking excited am I to have stumbled across this pulse pounding number while out shopping!!!

The sex scenes weren’t over the top (translation: not über kinky). However, it was the emotional ride that captured my attention and had me turning the pages until I reached the very end. 

Declan was sweet, sexy, and touchy-feely (physically and mentally). However don’t let me put a mansy pansy image into your head. He was all MAN. He literally tossed her over his shoulder. 

Mmmm, caveman…….

Oh yeah, that assertiveness definitely has its place. 

Check this book out, folks. 

Hell, check out all her books. I know I will be…….



Heart Rating System – 1
(lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤1/2
 PURCHASE LINKS —–> Kindle / Paperback

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Review of “Below the Belt (First to Fight #1)” – Jeanette Murray

Athletic trainer Marianne Cook is ready to do whatever it takes to turn the men of the Marine Corps boxing team into fighting machines. After all, her ultimate goal is to land a job training professional athletes. But when she notices a certain hard-bodied marine trying to hide an injury, Marianne realizes that she’ll have to use covert tactics to get him talking.
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First Lieutenant Brad Costa has waited years for the chance to fight for a spot on the Marine Corps boxing team, knowing he has to push twice as hard to get half as far as his younger counterparts. Brad tries to downplay his injuries to the attractive trainer who has his dreams in her hands, but Marianne isn’t buying it. Maybe it’s time to deploy some targeted flattery.
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As Brad and Marianne’s attraction turns red-hot, there’s more than one person having a hard time keeping their eyes on the prize…



—–> REVIEW <—–

Is it wrong/bad that I found more enjoyment from the bromances/camaraderie formed during the Marine boxing try-outs than I did the relationship between Cook and Costa?

The soldiers were sarcastic, hilarious, dedicated…… 

It was a glimpse into the world of our military men and I thoroughly enjoyed it – especially the pamphlet wonderland the men created. 

Cute, sweet, funny, and romantic. 

With that being said, I  did lower the score because I didn’t feel as connected to Brad and Marianne as much as I did the fellas (soldiers). 

I’m sure JM wanted to show the teamwork of the men, but more importantly, her goal was for her readers to feel/see the chemistry between the two main stars. Since I didn’t, it lost a couple hearts. Sorry, JM. 

On a final note……. HAWT COVER!!!! 


Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤
PURCHASE LINKS —–> Amazon – Print | Amazon Kindle

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Review of “Against the Ropes” – Sarah Castille

Redemption #1
PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY TOP 10 PICK
Paperback Link: Amazon – Print 
Ebook Link: Kindle 

Makayla never thought she’d set foot in an underground mixed-martial arts club. But if anyone needs a medic on hand, it’s these guys. Trouble is, at her first sight of the club’s owner she’s the one feeling breathless.

The man they call Torment is all sleek muscle and restrained power. Whether it’s in the ring or in the bedroom, he knows exactly when a soft touch is required and when to launch a full-on assault. He always knows just how far he can push. And he’s about to tempt Makayla in ways she never imagined…





—–>REVIEW<—-

Max (Torment) might claim to have dominant tendencies only in the bedroom but that’s truly not the case at all. He keeps trying to control Mac and Mac keeps defying him. As you can probably figure out without reading the book, he finally gives up and that’s when she realizes she loves him.

Fresh idea? Nah. 
Good story though? Yes, indeed. 

The sex scene were very invigorating. Their banter – comical. 

All in all, I’d totally read this story again.

My only complaint is the cover. Sexy? Heck yeah. Unfortunately the model didn’t have any of the tattoos Sarah went on and on about. Those designs on Max’s body were a vital nugget to who Max is, was…… 


Heart Rating System – 1
(lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤

PURCHASE LINKS


Paperback Link: Amazon – Print 
Ebook Link: Kindle 



Redemption #2
Publishers Weekly Best Summer Read 2014



Redemption #3
April 7, 2015

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Review of “Pucked” – Helena Hunting

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With a famous NHL player for a stepbrother, Violet Hall is well acquainted with the playboy reputation of many a hockey star. She isn’t interested in legendary team captain, Alex Waters, or his pretty, beat-up face and rock-hard six-pack abs. When Alex inadvertently obliterates Violet’s misapprehension regarding the inferior intellect of hockey players, he becomes much more than just a hot body with the face to match.

Suffering from a complete lapse in judgment, Violet discovers just how good Alex is with the hockey stick in his pants. Violet believes her night of orgasmic magic with Alex is just that: one night. But Alex starts to call. And text. And email and send extravagant—and quirky—gifts. Suddenly, he’s too difficult to ignore, and nearly impossible not to like.


The problem is, the media portrays Alex as a total player, and Violet doesn’t want to be part of the game.

 
 REVIEW  
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At first Alex’s shyness, gentlemanly ways towards intimacy was cute but that changed rather quickly for me. Asking to kiss a woman for the first time —- sweet. Asking to afterwards is weird. The “May I” or “Is this ok” was borderline annoying. However that wasn’t close to annoying as the overuse of the word beaver. 
 
HH kept referring to a vagina as beaver (Canadian slang term). Again the joke was funny at first but after several dozen times later, I was so over it and pretty much over this book. 
 
Examples of “beaver references…..
 
1.) “had more than one round of fill-the-beaver-hole in a night”
2.) “How’s your beaver?” (post sex text) 
3.) “I’m glad your beaver made a full recovery.” (another text) 
4.) My beaver is so excited she’s gnawing at my underwear.
5.) During a waxing section, she refers to the hair as “beaver pelts”.
6.) beaver image throughout the book.
 
There are many more instances like these but I think you get my drift. Yes, I’m rolling my eyes AND shaking my damn head!!!! 
 
Other parts of this tale irked me as well….. HH worn out use of MC (monster cock). I get it already. The man is hung like a horse. Move on already!!! 
 
With a sexy cover and book summary, I thought this book was going to be golden. Unfortunately, it didn’t make a lasting impression. I definitely won’t be reading it again. 
 

Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score:(because of the cover art) 

 

 
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Review of “Extreme Love” – Abby Niles

Used to the average Joe, Caitlyn Moore is overwhelmed when the supremely masculine Dante Jones walks into her life and expresses an interest in her. At first she pushes him away, refusing to encourage the attention of a cage fighter. Then she learns Dante has a love ‘em and leave ‘em reputation. What better way to fine-tune her non-existent flirting skills than with a male who won’t stick around? But Dante has no intention of being a practice dummy; he’s out for all or nothing. Now Caitlyn must accept Dante—violent career and all—or let him go.

Dante “Inferno” Jones has one goal: win the Welterweight Championship. At a time when focus is crucial, the last thing he needs is a distraction. Yet Caitlyn Moore becomes a challenge he can’t resist. When the light-hearted pursuit shifts to a battle to win her heart, his focus is shot. Faced with losing the biggest match of his career, Dante must decide if his extreme life also has room for Extreme Love.

 
 Review 
 
Hallelujah, finally we have a heroine who isn’t a size 5 or less. I’m not knocking thin women, I am one, but I like the fact Cait was a size 12. Abby was right when she stated a rounder body doesn’t always necessarily mean you aren’t fit. Like Cait, I’ve seen “bigger” people work out harder and longer than “thin” folks. Heart and determination go a long way and Cait had both. So did Dante. 
 
The underlying message should be heard and respected. 
 
Bravo, chickie pie!!!
 
Now lets discuss Dante…. that man is finger lickin’ good. It makes me want to tune into the UFC right now. Which, I think I will. 
 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤❤

 

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