The Final Score

Play-by-Play, Book #13

By Jaci Burton

ISBN# 9780399585142

Author’s Website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi

Mia Cassidy has just launched her brand new sports management business, MHC Management, and they’re off to a great start!  She has already signed more clients, then she had expected to in the early going and word-of-mouth keeps others coming in.  She decided to set up her business in San Francisco and now she gets the bonus of being close to her brother, Flynn, and her best friend, Nathan, who both play for the San Francisco Sabers, the city’s professional football team.

Nathan’s dad has retired from football and this season Nathan will be replacing him as quarterback for the Sabers.  His dad has left big shoes to fill this year and everyone expects him to be just as good and Nathan isn’t sure he can live up to the pressure.

Mia and Nathan met in college and became fast friends, a friendship they’ve kept alive all this time, despite a drunken sex filled night three years ago.  And, now both of them have a lot on their plates, but Mia has noticed their conversations always seem to have a sexual vein to them of late.  She chalks it up to being in a bit of a dry spell.  Nathan has offered up his services, but Mia is worried if they add benefits to their relationship that she will end up losing her best friend, in the end.

But as you can expect in romance novels, they end up giving in to their carnal desires!  And, they quickly realize that they don’t want to give up this new sexual side of their relationship, but have decided to keep the relationship secret.  But can the two handle the pressure when family, friends, and the media  all start suspecting something more is going on?

“So you’re going to live in denial?”

“That’s preferable, yes.”

“You realize you can’t live in denial land forever.”

“Why not? It’s nice here.”

Monique laughed. “You’re the most realistic person I’ve ever known, Mia. And you’ve never been afraid to face anything head on. So maybe whatever it is you’re feeling for Nathan that has you running scared might be love.”

Mia wrinkled her nose. “I can’t be in love. I don’t want to be in love. Love will ruin us.”

Monique rolled her eyes. “How will love ruin you?”

“If I thought sex was bad for our friendship? Falling in love could destroy us.”

“Sometimes your sense of logic is utterly mind-boggling. Falling in love might be the best thing that could ever happen to you and Nathan.”

This was another enjoyable read in the Play-by-Play series.  It was a quick read with lots of steamy sex.  You could easily finish this book in a day or two!

I enjoyed Mia and Nathan.  Mia is driven to make her new company succeed, although I find her launching this business and to be so successful right off the hop to be a little unrealistic.  She is definitely a person that thinks everything to death, which makes it hard for her to give in to her feelings regarding Nathan.  Speaking of, I loved Nathan!  He was just a laid-back go-with-the-flow kind of guy.  I was surprised with how well he took Mia claiming not to have anyone special in her life to both friends and media.  It felt a little Judas-like to me.  I really thought that was going to be what they ended up having problems over, but it wasn’t.

And, I really wish I had a better memory with these longer series!  I always struggle to remember who the couples are, especially those that books were in the earlier goings.  I can mostly keep track of the Cassidy brothers and their parents, although I fail with whom most of the brothers’ spouses are.  It really bothered me that I couldn’t really remember Nathan’s parents all that well… I kept thinking Nathan was Leo all grown-up, until we got to the point that Leo appeared in the book.

I was really surprised that there wasn’t more to the storyline about the photographer that kept showing up.  I was really expecting some scandalous pictures to surface.  And, I really thought Mia’s protective big brothers would have more of a role in her book, intimidating her man.  I was kind of looking forward to it, if I’m being honest.

The book tied up everything nice and neat at the end, although I found the resolution to their problems to be a bit anti-climactic and was hoping for some big romantic gesture, but it just wasn’t there.  I think this book really could have benefited from a good romantic epilogue!

*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*