Grand Slam (The Boys of Summer #3) by Heidi McLaughlin-Review and Book Tour

GRAND SLAM (The Boys of Summer #3) by Heidi McLaughlin-Review and Book Tour

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GRAND SLAM
The Boys of Summer #3
by Heidi McLaughlin
Release Date: May 23, 2017
Genre: adult, contemporary, baseball, romance

Grand Slam

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / Chapters Indigo / ibooks / Google Play

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date May 23, 2017

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2rzsmEu

Win the game. Lose your heart.

Everyone knows who I am and that I could have any female fan I want. That’s supposed to be the “perk” of playing left field for the Boston Renegades. But I don’t want just any woman; I want her.

She should be just another face in the crowd, but I can’t stop thinking about the one night we spent together-and her look of regret the morning after.

Because Saylor Blackwell is the kind of woman who haunts a man. Smart, sexy as hell, and one of the best managers in the business. She’s every ballplayer’s dream woman. And I’d do anything to make things right with her.

I’m done sitting on the bench when it comes to Saylor Blackwell. Time to swing for the fences.

•••••••••

REVIEW: GRAND SLAM is the third installment in Heidi McLaughlin’s contemporary, adult THE BOYS OF SUMMER baseball, romance series focusing on the Boston Renegades. This is Boston Renegades’ left fielder Travis Kidd, and PR agent Saylor Blackwell’s story line. GRAND SLAM can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous installments is revealed where necessary.

Told from dual first person points of view (Travis and Saylor) follows the second chance romance between Boston Renegades’ left fielder Travis Kidd, and PR agent Saylor Blackwell. Without giving away too much information GRAND SLAM focuses on the off-season as Travis must traverse a minefield of legal drama, slanderous accusations, and the less than stellar support of the fans and some of his teammates. Enter PR Agent Saylor Blackwell, the only woman able to clear Travis’s name, and the woman that calls to our hero’s heart. What ensues is a stress filled legal battle to save Travis Kidd, as he struggles to convince the woman he loves that he is innocent of all of the charges.

GRAND SLAM is a story of betrayal, defamation and retribution but it is also a story about one woman’s struggle to do what is right for a man she doesn’t believe is as innocent as he claims. As Travis battles the media, the fans and the legal system, Saylor battles for her heart and that of her young daughter.

The relationship between Travis and Saylor is one of second chances. Two years earlier, following a one-night stand, Saylor walked out of Travis’s life without explanation, and in the ensuing time has acted cold and deceptive when ever in his presence. Their rekindling relationship and romance is complicated when Saylor’s young daughter begins to fall in love with the man in question. The $ex scenes are limited but seductive.

There are a large number of secondary and supporting characters including several members of the Boston Renegades: Ethan and Daisy (Third Base #1), Cooper and Ainsley (Home Run #2), as well as attorneys, agents, top office brass, family, friends and fans who may or may not support their fallen hero.

The world building focuses on the relationship between Saylor and Travis, as well as the legal problems of our leading hero. Not everyone is willing to offer Travis their support including some of the members of his very own team. I struggled with our heroine’s less than cooperative behavior throughout the story. Fearing repercussion in her own life, Saylor’s questionable attitude was awkward, heartbreaking and tragic. The potential fall-out for Travis Kidd meant a life darkened by secrets, betrayal and lies.

GRAND SLAM is a gripping and passionate story line. The premise is edgy; the characters are colorful and dynamic but our heroine’s lack of action was discouraging and disappointing under the circumstances; the romance was sexy but challenging. GRAND SLAM will captivate your imagination and break your heart.

Reading Order and previous reviews
Third Base
Home Run
Grand Slam

Copy supplied for review.

Reviewed by Sandy

Q & A

Hi Heidi. Welcome to The Reading Café. Congratulations on the release of GRAND SLAM. Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions.

1. We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Let’s see. I’m a mom of two living in Vermont. I’m originally from the Pacific Northwest, where I developed a love for the Portland Trialblazers and Seattle Mariners. Now I’m a fan of all baseball teams, the Boston Celtics, Boston Bruins and New England Patriots. When I’m not writing, I spend my weekends (and some weeknights) at the basketball gym watching my daughters play.

2. Who or what influenced your career in writing?

It was challenge that I gave myself. I love reading and thought that if they can do it, so can I. So I did. I turned my journaling into paragraphs, put stories behind photos I would see and started developing characters.

3. What challenges or difficulties have you encountered writing and publishing your story?

Marketing. It’s hard. There is no right way to get the word out.

4. Would you please tell us something about the premise of GRAND SLAM and THE BOYS OF SUMMER series?

A few years back Patrick Kane from the Chicago Blackhawks was accused of rape, right around the time I released Third Base. I knew then that it would Travis Kidd who went through a similar situation.

5. Do you believe the cover image plays a deciding factor for many readers in the process of selecting a book or new series to read?

Absolutely. People are visual. The cover is the first thing they see.

Thank you Heidi for the great answers. Always a pleasure to feature the author at The Reading Cafe.

excerpt

Excerpt intended for mature readers 18+

 

 

Whenever I wake up with a hangover, I often ask myself why I drank so much and promise that I’ll never do it again. That promise is something I’ve been breaking for the past few days, and up until now, I didn’t care.
I had hoped the booze would muddy my memory of last night, but it hasn’t. Every word she said, every expression she had, every punch to my chest to get me out of her apartment is crystal clear. I fucked up, and I don’t even know how. All I know is that the sobs I heard on the other side of Saylor’s door last night were enough to sober my stupid ass up.
For hours, I sat against her door, until a resident suggested I leave or they were going to call the police. If I hadn’t been arrested ear- lier, I probably would have encouraged them to dial Boston’s Finest. Another man might understand my plight. The woman that I want to be with kicked me out of her house, and while I probably deserved it, I didn’t want to leave until she stopped crying. I didn’t want to be the one to walk away in her time of need.
But as egos go—and believe me, mine is huge—I couldn’t let it get in the way any longer, so I walked my drunk ass back home with my tail between my legs, only to stay up all night while the booze wore off, knowing that I had to live with whatever I’d done to Saylor.
She’s the last person in the world who I want to hurt, and she’s the one person who can save me. Not only from a life behind bars, but from myself. When I’m with her, I’m a different person. The cocky son of a bitch whom everyone is used to doesn’t exist when she’s near me, and frankly, that is the man I like, or at least I used to. It’s easier being a fucking douche. It’s second nature to me and comes with the territory of being named one of the city’s most eligible bachelors.
Except when I’m with Saylor, I can be the man who hides in the shadow of that Travis Kidd. I can be the kind of man who doesn’t have to have a one-liner available or wink in order to get a phone number. When I’m with her, life outside of baseball starts to have a meaning, a fucking purpose.

 

 

 

The Boys of Summer

About The Author Black and Red

Heidi McLaughlin: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Newsletter /Instagram /Pinterest

Heidi McLaughlin Originally from Portland, Oregon and raised in the Pacific Northwest, she now lives in picturesque Vermont, with her husband and two daughters. Also renting space in their home is an over-hyper Beagle/Jack Russell, Buttercup and a Highland Westie/Mini Schnauzer, JiLL and her brother, Racicot.

When she isn’t writing one of the many stories planned for release, you’ll find her sitting courtside during either daughter’s basketball games.

Heidi’s first novel, Forever My Girl, is currently in production for a major motion picture.

 

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The Player (The Player Duet #1) by K. Bromberg-Review and Book Release Tour

THE PLAYER (The Player Duet #1) by K. Bromberg-Review and Book Release Tour

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THE PLAYER
The Player Duet #1
by K. Bromberg
Release Date: April 17, 2017
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic, sports, romance

 Cover Designer:  Helen Williams

Photographer:  Perrywinkle Photography

Model: Chase Williams (IG: @bubbas_82)
The Player

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / ibooks /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date April 17, 2017

Easton Wylder is baseball royalty. The game is his life. His passion. His everything.

So, when an injury threatens to end Easton’s season early, the team calls in the renowned physical therapist, Doc Dalton, to oversee his recovery. Except it’s not Doc who greets Easton for his first session, but rather his daughter, Scout. She may be feisty, athletic, defiant, and gorgeous, but Easton is left questioning whether she has what it takes to help him.

Scout Dalton’s out to prove a female can handle the pressure of running the physical therapy regimen of an MLB club. And that proof comes in the form of getting phenom Easton Wylder back on the field. But getting him healthy means being hands-on.

And with a man as irresistible as Easton, being hands-on can only lead to one thing, trouble. Because the more she touches him, the more she wants him, and she can’t want him. Not when it’s her job to side in the club’s best interest if he’s ready to play.

But when sparks fly and fine lines are crossed, can they withstand the heat or is one of them bound to get burned?

••••••••••••

REVIEW:  THE PLAYER is the first installment in K. Bromberg’s contemporary, adult THE PLAYER erotic, romance sports duet focusing on professional baseball player Easton Wylder, and physical therapist Scout Dalton.

Told from dual first person points of view (Easton and Scout) THE PLAYER follows the rehabilitation of professional baseball player Easton Wylder, and the building relationship between Easton, and the team’s new physical therapist Scout Dalton. Easton Wylder is on the DL (disabled list) from a near career ending hit that left our story line hero struggling with his place on the team and working towards a healthy recovery. But a switch in the team’s physical therapist finds Easton face to face with Scout Dalton, a woman who calls to Easton’s heart and soul. For weeks, Easton and Scout will work together both in and out of the bedroom, in the hopes of Easton’s full recovery and return to the game he loves to play. What ensues is the growing love between our story line couple, and a surprise announcement that could place their relationship at opposite sides.

Easton Wylder is an all star player who lives in the shadow of his father’s fame and former professional baseball career. A major restructuring of the team finds Easton battling for a position he was born to play. Scout Dalton has survived many heartaches throughout her life including the death of her beloved brother and the absence of a mother she barely knew. Falling in love with Easton Wylder could mean another form of heartache as our heroine heads into a relationship with a man who could break her heart, and destroy her soul.

The relationship between Easton and Scout begins as a professional arrangement but one Easton believes is a prank pulled by his teammates and friends. Scout is hoping to keep their relationship on the down low knowing her career and future are on the line. The $ex scenes are intimate, seductive and provocative.

We are introduced to a large number of secondary and supporting characters including many members of the Aces professional baseball team; Scout’s father Doc Dalton; and Easton’s on-field nemesis Jose Santiago.

The world building looks at the game of baseball, friendships and family. Both Easton and Scout struggle with family pressure, and the promises made in the heat of the moment; and both of our leading characters know what it is like to battle demons from the past.

THE PLAYER is a sexy and spicy story line about two people pulled together by circumstance and need. There are moments of questionable choices, and inspiring motives; flawless romance and spirited actions; provocative thoughts and dramatic pronouncements. The premise is electrifying; the characters are colorful, dynamic and intense; the romance is heart-warming, evocative and alive. THE PLAYER is a passionate and delightful story that ends on a cliff hanger-you have been warned!

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

The Player Teaser

About the Author

 

K. BrombergNew York Times Bestselling author K. Bromberg writes contemporary novels that contain a mixture of sweet, emotional, a whole lot of sexy, and a little bit of real. She likes to write strong heroines, and damaged heroes who we love to hate and hate to love.

A mom of three, she plots her novels in between school runs and soccer practices, more often than not with her laptop in tow.

Since publishing her first book in 2013, K. has sold over one million copies of her books and has landed on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestsellers lists over twenty-five times.

In April, she’ll release The Player, the first in a two-book sports romance series (The Catch, book 2, will be released late June), with many more already outlined and ready to be written.

She loves to hear from her readers so make sure you check her out on social media or sign up for her newsletter to stay up to date on all her latest releases and sales: http://bit.ly/254MWtI

 

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon Author | Driven Group

 

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Home Run (Boys of Summer #2) by Heidi McLaughlin-Review, Book Tour & Giveaway

HOME RUN (The Boys of Summer #2) by Heidi McLaughlin-Review, Book Tour & Giveaway

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HOME RUN
Boys of Summer #2
by Heidi McLaughlin
Genre: adult, contemporary, baseball,romance
Release Date: January 17, 2017

••••••••••••••••••

Add to Goodreads

Home Run

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Barnes & Noble /Google Play /iBooks /Kobo

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date January 17, 2017

Cooper Bailey finally has a shot at being a major league ballplayer, but it will take all his focus and energy during spring training to make it happen. Complicating things is his instantaneous connection with Ainsley Burke. He can’t get enough of her, and before he knows it, they’re spending every night together. But as happy as he is off the field, his focus on it is suffering, and he isn’t willing to risk his lifelong dream over a girl.

But without Ainsley, Cooper’s miserable, and his game is still off. No matter what he tries, he can’t get her out of his head, and he’s starting to realize that maybe he doesn’t want to. Baseball is just a game, but Ainsley might be the real thing. Now he just has to convince her of that.

••••••••

REVIEW: HOME RUN is the second installment in Heidi McLaughlin’s contemporary, adult THE BOYS OF SUMMER baseball romance series focusing on the members of the MLB team the Boston Renegades. This is rookie center fielder Cooper Bailey, and zoo attendant Ainsley Burke’s story line. HOME RUN can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous story line is revealed where necessary.

Told from dual first person points of view (Ainsley and Cooper) HOME RUN follows the building relationship between the Boston Renegades rookie center fielder Cooper Bailey, and zoo attendant Ainsley Burke. It’s spring training time in Fort Myers Florida, and Cooper Bailey is struggling to make the starting line-up. The team’s first public relations assignment finds our hero face to face with Ainsley Burke, Fort Myers zoo personnel, and the woman that would call to his heart…but Cooper’s career is barely off the ground, and Ainsley struggles with her mother’s deteriorating illness, and a permanent relationship is not in the cards. What ensues is the growing love between two people whose lives will fall apart when Ainsley pushes Cooper out of her life as everything begins to implode.

Cooper Bailey was raised by a father whose goal was to see his son succeed in the game of baseball. Failure was never an option; and a relationship would only interfere in his son’s professional career. Ainsley’s mother is dying and our heroine struggles with the guilt and pain of her impending demise. Meeting Cooper Bailey is all sorts of wrong especially as her mother has reinforced that dating a professional athlete will only lead to heartbreak and a future alone.

The relationship between Ainsley and Cooper is one of immediate attraction. The sexual energy is palpable. Cooper struggles with his less than dynamic play on the field, and Ainsley battles with memories from the past that affect her relationship with the man that she loves. Ainsley need to constantly push Cooper away affected this reader’s overall acceptance of the heroine’s maturity and past. The $ex scenes are intimate and seductive without the over the top graphic sexual text and language.

There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including Ethan Davenport and Daisy Robinson (Third Base #1), as well as the coaches and players from the Boston Renegades. We are introduced to Cooper’s father Roy Bailey, and Ainsley’s mother Janice Burke, as well as Ainsley’s best friend Stella.

The world building follows the ups and downs of the Boston Renegades as they battle for standings in the professional baseball league. The relationship between Ainsley and Cooper struggles with outside interference, and the broken heart of a woman who loses the most important person in her life. Time part is compounded by a couple of surprises, and their rushed reunion and professions of love are resolved with little conflict. Each chapter begins with a Boston Renegade media update, and a blogger forum into the personal and private lives of the players. Plenty of locker room banter to add some fun and humor.

HOME RUN is a sweet, romantic story line about two people torn apart by emotional guilt, grief and parental control. The premise is entertaining and moving; the characters are passionate and playful; the romance is energetic and animated.

Reading Order and Previous Reviews
Third Base
Home Run
Grand Slam (May 2017)

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

The Boys of Summer

Top 5 Favorite musicians/songs to listen to while writing

Eagles
Prince
Taylor Swift
Halsey
80’s on shuffle

Home Run Teaser

excerpt

“Can I call you, sometime?”
Ainsley looks down at the ground and crosses her arms over her chest. “Listen, I’m sure you’re a nice guy and all, but I don’t date baseball players. You guys all come in here, acting sweet and caring about the kids, but will be gone in two months. We’re forgotten all about until next spring training.”
From her spiel, I can tell someone has hurt her in the past, but I’m not willing to give up. There’s no way I can now. “Whoa, why the one-eighty?”
“Excuse me?”
“I mean, a second ago I sort of thought… never mind.” I shake my head and start to walk away, only to turn back. “I don’t know about the other guys. I only know me, and I’m not like that. I’d like to prove myself. Just one date to show you that I’m genuine?”
She shakes her head no again, but there’s a glint in her eye that tells me she’s thinking about it. “I’m sorry I can’t.”
Ainsley is walking away before I can even think to form a rebuttal. Our left fielder is there to pick up the pieces and remind me that I just had the first strike out of my major league career. Wonderful.
I drag my sorry ass out toward the waiting bus with my head hanging in shame. I thought for sure I’d at least get her number and be able to convince her that I’m not an epic douche like some of the other guys.
Just as my foot touches the bottom step, my name is called from behind. In a heart-stopping moment, I think it’s Ainsley, only to find another female worker running toward me. I step away and wait for her to get to me.
“Here,” she says, slipping a piece of paper into my hand. When I look at what’s written on it, I’m surprised to see Ainsley’s name and what I’m assuming is her number. “She’ll kill me if she knew I did this, but it’s her cell. Sweep her off her feet. She deserves it.” The woman winks before running back toward the zoo.
Our catcher slaps me on my shoulder. “Well, you lucky dog.”

About The Author

Heidi McLaughlin: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Newsletter

Heidi McLaughlinHeidi is a New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author.

Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she now lives in picturesque Vermont, with her husband and two daughters. Also renting space in their home is an over-hyper Beagle/Jack Russell, Buttercup, two Parakeets, Gonzo & Hedwig, and their newest addition of a Highland West/Mini Schnauzer, Jill.

During the day Heidi is behind a desk talking about Land Use. At night, she’s writing one of the many stories planned for release or sitting court-side during either daughter’s basketball games.

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Third Base (The Boys of Summer #1) by Heidi McLaughlin-Review and Release Blitz

THIRD BASE (The Boys of Summer #1) by Heidi McLaughlin-Review and Re-Release Blitz

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THIRD BASE
The Boys of Summer 1
by Heidi McLaughlin
Re-Release Date: June 7, 2016
Genre: adult, contemporary, sports, romance

Third Base

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO /Google PlayiBooks

Add to your Goodreads shelf

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Re-release: June 7, 2016

Ethan Davenport is already Boston’s most eligible bachelor. In his second season with the Boston Renegades he has set his eyes on the girl behind the visitors’ dugout.

That girl is Daisy Robinson, a journalism student at the University of Boston and a die-hard Renegades fan.

But with new found love comes challenges and Ethan and Daisy have to deal with his crazy schedule, school finals and his presence on her campus for some much needed media training.

For Ethan nothing can come between him and Daisy, until a secret that she’s been keeping threatens to destroy them both.

•••••••••

REVIEW: THIRD BASE is the first installment in Heidi McLaughlin’s new adult, contemporary THE BOYS OF SUMMER baseball romance series focusing on the members of the professional baseball team the Boston Renegades. This is third baseman Ethan Davenport, and journalism student Daisy Robinson’s story line.

Told from first person point of view (Ethan) THIRD BASE follows Boston Renegades third baseman twenty two year old Ethan Davenport through his second season in the major leagues. At each home game, Ethan is enamored by one fan-a young woman behind the visitor’s dugout at each home game- and the woman who calls to Ethan’s heart. Enter twenty year old Daisy Robinson, a journalism student with season tickets to the Boston Renegades, and a woman with a secret that she holds close to her heart.

The relationship between Daisy and Ethan begins slowly as Daisy tries to keep Ethan at a distance. She is young woman who is struggling to make ends meet, while looking after he ailing grandfather and attending university every day. Daisy has a secret that if revealed, may mean the end of her relationship with Ethan Davenport. The $ex scenes are intimate without the over the top graphic sexual imagery but I will add that I did not ‘feel’ the emotional connection between the leading couple-the spark was missing from their relationship.

There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including Daisy’s grandfather-a diehard Renegades fan, and a man who is struggling with his personal freedom. We are introduced to a number of the Boston Renegades players, coaches and managers, as well as Ethan’s parents, sister, and his niece Shea. Ethan’s ex girlfriend continues to play a role in our hero’s life that may be questionable to many readers. These are the twists that should have lead to some anxious moments but were brushed aside without much fanfare.

The world building follows the Boston Renegades on the road, at home, and in the locker room. Boys will be boys, as the saying goes, and nothing is off limits when the players begin to ‘play’.

THIRD BASE is an entertaining story where the heroine keeps secret another part of her life- a part that I guessed immediately therefore there was no surprise for me when revealed. The premise is enjoyable; the characters are animated; the romance is passionate and heartbreaking-you know there will be fallout when the truth is revealed.

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

Third Base teaser

excerpt

I look at the scoreboard from the on-deck circle. It’s the bottom of the ninth with two outs. Unless we go on some miraculous run, the game is over and we’ve lost, giving us our second loss in a row.
The Orioles coach calls for a time-out and approaches the mound. This gives Meyers, our right fielder, the opportunity for us to talk. Actually, it gives me the ability to stare at the girl that has held my attention all night. After my home run, I thought I could focus on the game, but each time I came up to bat or went out to the field, I was looking to see if she was staring… and she was, which really stroked my ego.
I meet Meyers halfway between the on-deck circle and home plate. Usually, we’d stand back or talk to the third base coach, but there’s no coming back from this defeat. When I reach him, I can tell he’s frustrated; we all are. We’re a far better team than what our record shows. Even though it’s still very early, our expectations are much higher, and with the road trip coming up, we have got to get out of this funk, fast… before it’s too late.
“This ump is calling shit.” Meyers kicks the dirt around his feet.
“Has been all night.” On any given night it’s either in your favor or not. Some umpires come into a game with a chip on their shoulder. They remember everything, and they don’t let you forget it. They say once the game is over, it’s over. Umpires don’t feel that way.
“Play ball!” the umpire yells.
Meyers goes back to home plate and settles in for what could be his last pitch. If he gets on base, I’m up. If he strikes out, my night is over. I rest my bat on my shoulder and watch – not Meyers, but the girl in the hat. She’s leaning forward, resting her elbows on the dugout. I had every intention of finding an usher during the seventh inning but lost my nerve. I don’t know how that’d be received if our manager was to find out, and short of going into the stands the second the game is over, I’m running out of options.
It’s a swing and foul ball for Meyers, still giving me hope. The girl hasn’t moved, and something tells me that she’s focused on me. I should be focused on the game, but I’m not.
I lean over to the usher who stands by the field and whisper, “There’s a girl in section sixty-five, row c, seat one. I’d like to talk to her after the game.”
He nods and says something into his really cool CIA walkie-talkie-type thing. When I first arrived, I asked if I could play with it. I was told no. It was a total buzz kill. I asked my agent to get me one, and he told me to grow up… not one of my finer moments.
Meyers goes down swinging and just like that, the game’s over. We lost three to eight. I wait for him to walk by before returning to the dugout, but not without one last look at the girl in row c. Another usher is walking down the aisle toward her. I climb down the stairs and pause where she can’t see me. The usher approaches her and talks wildly with his hands. She looks around, reaches for her bag, and follows him up the steps. I can only hope she’ll be in the lounge when I get there.
Right now I’m thankful I’m not allowed to give interviews yet because it means I can shower and get upstairs quicker. The reporters call my name, asking about my home-run. They know I’m not allowed to speak with them, but they try anyway. I keep my head down, my classic move after we’ve lost, and rush into the clubhouse. There will be no after-game meeting; our manager will save that for tomorrow.
I shower quickly and slip into jeans and a t-shirt. My hair is still wet and dripping down onto my shirt, but I don’t want my third base girl waiting too long. I take the back stairs two at a time and enter the lounge. This is where the wives and girlfriends hang out, and now that I think about it, it’s probably not the best place to have sent her. It’s like vulture prey in here for new girlfriends… not that she’s my girlfriend. I just want to know her name.
As soon as I enter the hallway, I find her sitting outside the door. She stands up when she hears me coming and keeps her hands behind her back, watching me closely. I come to a halt in front of her, and all I can see is the top of her hat. She’s about a foot shorter than me, and I like that.
“I wanted to apologize for giving you the ball.” I keep my hands clasped to avoid the nervous twitch I have. The last thing I want to do is scare her away.
“Oh… do you want it back?” Her voice is soft, sweet, and completely Boston. Hearing her speak makes me feel like I have something to look forward to, like I’m home.
“What? No, I thought I embarrassed you… It’s just…”
My knees go weak when she looks at me. Her light green eyes are the color of sea glass, and she has a dimple that compliments her smile. I find myself wanting to rub my thumb over it so I can feel it.
“You didn’t embarrass me. It was nice.”
“What’s your name?” I ask, needing to know because calling her ‘third base girl’ or ‘girl in row c’ isn’t going to cut it.
“Daisy.”
Daisy, I repeat in my head so I don’t forget. Daisy… like the flowers that my mother loves.
“I’m Ethan,” I stupidly tell her but feel like I should introduce myself. “Wanna get out of here and grab some dinner?”
She eyes me and then the ground, making me wait what feels like an eternity for her answer.

 

 

About the Author Black and Green

Heidi McLaughlin: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Newsletter

Heidi McLaughlinHeidi is a New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author.

Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she now lives in picturesque Vermont, with her husband and two daughters. Also renting space in their home is an over-hyper Beagle/Jack Russell, Buttercup, two Parakeets, Gonzo & Hedwig, and their newest addition of a Highland West/Mini Schnauzer, Jill.

During the day Heidi is behind a desk talking about Land Use. At night, she’s writing one of the many stories planned for release or sitting court-side during either daughter’s basketball games.

Forever romance

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The Heat is On (The Boys of Summer 4) by Katie Rose-a review

THE HEAT IS ON (The Boys of Summer #4) by Katie Rose-a review

The Heat is On

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / BAM

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date January 5, 2015

When veteran catcher Connor Jackson gets traded to the New Jersey Sonics, he welcomes the opportunity to possibly cap his career with a World Series ring in his home state. But there’s another reason Connor is glad things have come full circle. In pursuit of hardball glory, he left behind his college sweetheart, the one girl he could never forget. Seeing her again stirs up long-lost desires . . . and this time, he’s determined not to strike out.

A divorced mother of four, Tracy Coleman no longer aspires to gossip-mag glam—but she’ll make an exception for a date with Connor. Their chemistry is hotter than ever, and being alone with him is more seductive than she anticipated. Who could blame her for leaving out a little detail like the kids? Now all she has to do is come clean and convince the man of her dreams that they—Connor, Tracy, and her children—have a future together.

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REVIEW: THE HEAT IS ON is the fourth installment in Katie Rose’s contemporary, adult THE BOYS OF SUMMER baseball, romance series. This is New Jersey Sonics catcher Connor Jackson, and divorced mother of four/medical transcriber Tracy Coleman’s story line. THE HEAT IS ON can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. All of the previous storyline couples play secondary and supporting roles.

Told from dual third person perspectives THE HEAT IS ON is a second chance romance between Tracy and Connor. Tracy and Connor were college sweethearts but Connor’s dream of making it big in the majors found our couple going in opposite directions. Fast forward to present day wherein Tracy finds herself a divorced mother with four children under six years old, and Connor returns home to New Jersey for one final shot at the World Series and a championship ring. What ensues is a rekindling of a relationship that finds Tracy keeping secret her young family of four.

Tracy Coleman is a woman scorned whose ex husband kept a secret family on the side. While pregnant with child number four Tracy found herself a single parent with no stable support system from her children’s father. Connor Jackson is a thirty seven year old baseball player whose best days are behind him. When he is traded to the New Jersey Sonics Connor is given a chance to make the team a contender for the championship ring-think Bull Durham-an experienced catcher whose leadership is needed to bring about a winning season. But a trade to New Jersey places Connor closer to the woman he has never stopped loving-a woman whose own life moved forward without the man that she loved.

The rekindling of the relationship is a slow build to a second chance at love but our heroine keeps secrets her life at home. In this, I did have some issues with her reluctance to reveal the truth but in the end Connor is more of a hero; a man who is willing to accept everything and everyone in Tracy’s life even though Tracy’s attempts to protect her family could have come at a cost to both her relationship with Connor and hearts of her young children. The $ex scenes are seductive and provocative without the over the top erotic, graphic imagery and text.

THE HEAT IS ON is a sweet storyline with a little bit of suspense, romance, $ex and love. Tracy’s ex-husband adds some uncomfortable moments when he threatens our heroine but the resolution to this particular aspect of the story is quick to resolve and with some moments that were not quite realistic. Connor’s fellow baseball players add friendship, friendly banter and an overall feeling of familiarity and cohesion to the story. The premise is engaging, lively and encouraging; the characters are charismatic and colorful; the romance is passionate and hopeful. There is plenty of baseball play by play to be enjoyed.

READING ORDER and previous reviews

Bring on the Heat
Too Hot to Handle
The Heat of the Moment
The Heat is On

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

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Bring on the Heat / Too Hot to Handle (The Boys of Summer 1 & 2) by Katie Rose-a review

Bring on the Heat / Too Hot to Handle (The Boys of Summer 1&2) by Katie Rose-a review

The Boys of Summer

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Too Hot to Handle
The Boys of Summer #2
by Katie Rose
Release Date: January 27, 2015
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic romance, baseball

Too Hot to Handle

Amazon.com / Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

Nikki Case is no fan of baseball. Her ex gambled away a fortune on the sport, and now her PR firm has tasked her with cleaning up the league’s most notorious bad boys. The New Jersey Sonics are known for wild womanizing and booze-fueled brawls, so Nikki expects the worst. Her first stop in the battle to win hearts and minds is star hitter Jake Baldwin—a legendary ladies man so smokin’ he threatens to melt her tough-girl armor.

Although his teammates prank her without mercy, Jake admires the way Nikki gives as good as she gets. She may be the queen of frost, but there’s kindling beneath those sultry curves—and he’s just the man to ignite it. But when a PR nightmare lands the Sonics in headlines across the country, Nikki is ready to walk. Only then does Jake realize how important she is to the Sonics’ success—and that winning the love of a good woman is no game.

REVIEW: TOO HOT TO HANDLE is the second installment in Katie Rose’s contemporary, adult The Boys of Summer erotic, romance series focusing on the members of the professional baseball team The New Jersey Sonics. This is shortstop Jake Baldwin and PR representative Nikki Cases’s storyline. Although TOO HOT TO HANDLE is the second in the series, it can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty.

The premise follows Nikki’s foray into the world of professional baseball. The New Jersey Sonics are a PR nightmare with womanizing players and drunken brawls. Nikki’s latest assignment is to clean up the players; present a more professional team; and work magic with the media. What Nikki never expected was to fall in love with the team’s resident bad boy Jake Baldwin-an all star hitter with a reputation with the ladies.

The relationship between Jake and Nikki begins on a dare. Jake’s teammates bet that he can’t seduce the uptight and professional Nikki Case into bed, and Jake is more than willing to prove them wrong. While the other players watch from the sidelines, Jake persuades Nikki to give him a chance. When Nikki accepts, all bets are off when Jake begins to fall for the team’s new PR representative. The love scenes are erotic, passionate and electric.

The secondary and supporting characters include all of The New Jersey Sonics including Darcy and Chase from book one-BRING ON THE HEAT; team management; Nikki’s sister Natalie; and a young Hispanic boy named Joaquin whose life will become entangled with the all star player. The world building continues to pull the reader onto the outfield, behind the bench and into the bedrooms of The New Jersey Sonics.

TOO HOT TO HANDLE is a fun and entertaining read with a little bit of romance, heartbreak and heat. The quick resolution to a particular plot point between Nikki and Jake was a little abrupt; too quick to settle. I wanted a little more in depth groveling from Jake. When the truth was revealed Jake basically threw up his hands in defeat and walked away-he didn’t need the crap and wasn’t going to beg for forgiveness but in the end, that is exactly what he needed to do. There is a slight ‘Bull Durham’ feel to the series-give it a try-you will see what I mean.

Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley.

Reviewed by Sandy

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BRING ON THE HEAT
(The Boys of Summer #1)
by Katie Rose
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic romance, baseball
Release Date: August 26, 2014

Amazon.com / Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

Bring on the HeatIn Katie Rose’s irresistible battle of wits, a case of mistaken identity lands a female fan in bed with a sexy superstar—and in major-league trouble.

House-sitting for a rich and famous friend has its perks, and Darcy Hamilton isn’t shy about enjoying them. Especially when it means scoring a ticket to an exclusive fashion show hosted by the New Jersey Sonics. An avid baseball fan, Darcy has always dreamed of meeting the team—especially the starting pitcher whose body is as hot as his fastball. But there’s a catch. The gala is by invitation only. To get behind the velvet rope, mild-mannered Darcy will have to pose as party girl Lydia Logan.

Schmoozing is one of the downsides of fame, but Chase Westbrook knows how to liven up even the dullest event. And nothing spices a night up more than a beautiful socialite with a naughty reputation. What Chase doesn’t expect is a hint of sweetness beneath her sultry façade. Flirtation turns to seduction and leaves him aching for more. Chase just doesn’t know who the real Lydia is: the spoiled tease crying foul over some missing diamonds or the alluring woman making a play for his heart.

REVIEW: BRING ON THE HEAT is the first installment in Katie Rose’s contemporary adult The Boys of Summer erotic romance series focusing on the members of the professional baseball team the New Jersey Sonics. This is pitcher Chase Westbrook and house sitter/writer Darcy Hamilton’s storyline-a Cinderella esque story of mistaken identity

The focus of the storyline is Darcy Hamilton. House sitting for the Logan Chip heiress and bad girl Lydia Logan, Darcy jumps at the chance to attend an exclusive fashion show and fund raiser sponsored by the New Jersey Sonics. Darcy is an uber fan of the Sonics pitcher Chase Westbrook and ultimately finds herself on the receiving end of Chase’s attention. Chase believes he has met the Logan Chip heiress Lydia Logan and throughout most of the storyline Darcy (who bares a striking resemblance to the heiress) continues to impersonate Lydia wherever she goes.

The relationship between Chase and Darcy is one of mistaken identity but an identity that Darcy continues to perpetrate throughout the story. Darcy will fall in love with Chase Westbrook but her fraudulent and deceptive acknowledgement of all things Lydia Logan will find her in hot water when the real Lydia Logan shows up at the same event as Chase and Darcy. Heated and hurtful words will be exchanged leaving a grieving and heartbroken Darcy to pick up the pieces of her shattered dreams. Lies, deceit and a fraudulent identity does not make for love and a happily ever after.

The secondary and supporting characters include the members of the New Jersey Sonic baseball team; Darcy’s best friend Cara; Chase’s less than enthusiastic parents; as well as several members of the media and the rich and famous. We will be introduced to Jake Baldwin-the Sonics womanizing shortstop-whose storyline will be told next in TOO HOT TO HANDLE. The world building brings the reader front and center into the game of baseball, the deals and contracts; and the men and women who control the show.

BRING ON THE HEAT is a fast paced, quick read that was, at times, frustrating as it pertained to the continued premise of mistaken identity. As the storyline builds, so too did this reader’s anxiety knowing that Darcy’s deception was but a reveal away. No matter how many attempts to tell the truth, the opportunity to come clean was always brushed aside when the glitz and glamor of fame reared its’ media focused head.

Reviewed by Sandy

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