Double Play by Joanne Rock is now officially my favorite contemporary romance she has penned to date. She captures my attention right from the beginning and keeps it page after page. Ms. Rock's characters are vibrant and compelling. Her timing is impeccable. She adds the perfect amount of twists and turns which makes it impossible to put her story down even though it means a short night of sleep.
Double Play starts out with Amber Nichols checking out the gorgeous baseball player who is her temporary neighbor. One of her friends, Rochelle, has lent her beach house to Amber for some much needed R&R. Her life has been wicked stressful lately and she really needs the escape. Along with the keys, her friend shares some advice telling her to let loose for a change and go looking for some vacation sex. Rochelle mentions the baseball player next door would make a very nice fling in deed. Normally the cautious side of Amber would scoff at such a suggestion especially since she has no clue how to go about catching any man's interest but she isn't a book reviewer for nothing. Amber plans ahead and brings along a how-to book called The Mating Season. After spying her sexy neighbor, she figures she better start her research and begin using whatever tips it offers. She needs all the help she can get to step outside her comfort zone since her confidence level is zilch due to a horrible recent break-up.
Heath Donovan is more interested in not being recognized than anything else during his two day suspension from his coaching job. Even if the inspiring sight of his gorgeous neighbor in a white sundress has him wishing this was a real vacation and not some punishment from management. But once he literally runs into her later at the local bar he was picking up some take-out at, he begins to have second thoughts. What kind of woman brings a book to a bar? She doesn't look like she would need advice on dating, not with legs like hers. The woman is a mystery. One he would love to solve. Besides he can't walk away from the first woman he has met in a long time that doesn't seem to know him. Being a sports star isn't easy on relationships and he has given up on them.
The summer heat was nothing compared to the steamy temps Heath and Amber create together once they hook up. Heath doesn't want it to end and convinces Amber to prolong their time together. Neither was prepared for the real world crashing in on their fragile relationship. Heath's in the sport's spotlight lifestyle worries Amber. She prefers a quiet life filled with her books not loads of female fans eyeing her man. Can she really survive in his world? But she is determined to at least be useful to Heath while they are together. She puts her researching skills to work and has a bunch of advice she thinks will help him do his job. Will Heath be happy with her help or will he be angry with her inferring in his job? Can two such different people make it work or is this truly just a fling for them?
I love how their two lives clash and seem so incompatible. It has me wondering how Ms. Rock will achieve a happily ever after for Heath and Amber. Both deserve some happiness but can their obvious attraction for each other be enough to work through all their differences? Ms. Rock thinks so and she convinces me too! I was enchanted throughout their story and highly recommend reading Double Play.
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