Play by Play Anthology
By Jaci Burton
Author’s Website: http://www.jaciburton.com/
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi
I was pretty excited when this book arrived in the mail even though I’m not a big fan of anthologies, mainly because I really struggle with getting immersed in short stories. But it was a Play-by-Play book so I quickly looked past that. But I was a little disappointed when I realized they weren’t new stories, but just packaged together for the first time. I had already read two of the three stories, and the one I haven’t read was only because I didn’t start reading this series until book 8, Straddling the Line. So I’ll detail the story I hadn’t read previously, Holiday games, and include my reviews of the other two stories from previous posts.
Play by Play #6.5
Christmas is just around the corner and things have been rather hectic for Liz and Gavin Riley. They are hosting the family Christmas dinner this year with the huge Riley clan all expected to invade their home and Liz is determined to do everything on her own. But before that, Gavin’s sister is getting married and there is plenty of wedding stuff to attend to including the bachelor and bachelorette party trips to Las Vegas and Jamaica respectively. And, if all that wasn’t enough, Liz is on a mission to get pregnant. They’ve been trying for over a year, but Liz refuses to give up, but it doesn’t stop her constant disappointment. But it leads her to sexually assaulting her husband everywhere they go! Not that Gavin is too upset about that!
I wanted to like this story, but I found it to be a bit to blasé. Gavin’s cheesy ‘Magic Cock of Knowledge’ was almost more than I could take. But thankfully the all-powerful only made the one scene. I also found Liz to be a total killjoy on the bachelorette party, no drinking and hanging out in the cabana instead of swimming with her girls most of the time. And my final complaint was Nathan’s girlfriend being just a little too perfect. A college kid putting her grades before the sport she supposedly loves? Seems a bit too levelheaded for someone that age.
But by the time this story was over, I had a stupid grin on my face and Gavin and Liz had the Christmas they will never be able to forget!
Holiday on Ice
Play by Play, Book #8.5
Originally posted here: http://openbooksociety.com/article/holiday-on-ice-play-by-play-by-jaci-burton-obs-book-review/
Hockey player, Trick, and dancer, Stella, were pretty hot between the sheets last year, but their schedules got in the way and they drifted apart as people often do. But they bump into each other at a local bar, and both are flooded with the heated memories of their past. Both wanting to have a repeat performance. But it goes against Stella’s rules. Never start seeing the same guy again after it’s ended.
Stella doesn’t believe in dating. After having her heart broken once, she refuses to get involved in a relationship. Preferring to find a warm body to slack her needs with from time to time instead. But will all the rules go out the window when she takes a chance on Trick? A man who definitely wants more!
This was a great novella! Can you tell by my star rating? I’m not a huge fan of the short story. It’s hard to get invested in the characters in such a short time, hard for an author to write a story with depth in just a hundred pages or so. But this novella did just that! I loved it!
Of course it doesn’t hurt that hockey is my favorite sport, my first love really. So, I was bound to fall in love with the hockey player, Trick! He was sweet, kind, and loyal. Sounds a little too much like a dog for you? Well the steamy sex scenes will rid you of that notion right away. He is swoon worthy with the ice skating adventure, snowball fight, and of course the special tree topper!
Stella, Stella, Stella. I can appreciate a girl not wanting to get involved with a sticky messy romance, but at times I wanted to shake her! Sexy. Hockey. Player. Hello! I was also really shocked when the reason for her dating boycott came about. I was expecting something much worse, and it really made me feel like she was over-reacting! And then jumping to conclusions without even talking to Trick about it, trying to end things without even explaining why??
But luckily Trick is a patient and forgiving man!
I really enjoyed this story and think it’s a perfect quick read to get you in the winter, ice-skating, and Christmas spirit! A perfect holiday treat!
“I have a gift for you.”
She cocked a brow. “Is that right?”
“Yes. It’ll require us to get naked.”
She looped her arm in his as they headed to the bedroom. “Is this gift something I’ve seen before?”
“Well … maybe. But this gift can always be used in new and unique ways.”
She tilted her head back and laughed. “Best. Gift. Ever.”
Hot Holiday Nights
Play-by-Play, Book #10.5
Originally posted here: http://openbooksociety.com/article/hot-holiday-nights-play-by-play-by-jaci-burton-obs-book-review/
Sports agent, Victoria Baldwin, is taking a long overdue vacation to Hawaii for her Christmas holiday. There is a big surfing competition going on while she’s there and she quickly meets a hot champion surfer, Alex McConnell. They hit it off right away, he’s a perfect vacation fling, and things really start to heat up! But then Victoria meets Alex’s friend, Ben, and she can’t help being attracted to them both!!
I found myself really enjoying this book and it was a super quick read! But very steamy!
I enjoyed both men in question, but wasn’t expecting it to turn into a ménage book! So take Burton’s usual steaminess and multiple it by 100%!!
Ben and Alex were both perfect gentleman, the too good to be true variety, but the perfect dream men for this book! They are a typical ménage book pair of guys caring so much about the female in question’s pleasure and needs. I found Ben’s stopping as things really started getting amped up to get everyone a drink a bit odd and unrealistic.
I wanted to like Victoria and I guess she wasn’t a bad character, but she did come off as a bit of a slut in this one with how quickly she goes from under Alex’s bed to fantasizing about Ben and then off course how easily she accepted a threesome from these two hunks and quickly took charge of the situation. She also seemed a bit too prepared!
But overall I really enjoyed this book. It was a quick steamy read and overall a lot of fun! It makes me hope we see more surfers in this series in the future!