by Jeanette Murray
Expected publication: August 29th 2011 by Carina Press
Courtesy of NetGalley
Chris St. James is ready for normal. After walking away from her pro tennis career and a toxic relationship with a star hockey player, she's starting a new life as a teacher and tennis coach in a small town. Now all she needs is an average guy to share it with.Brett Wallace is no average guy. Forced to retire from the NFL after an injury—and suddenly single after being dumped by his status-conscious wife—he's returned to his hometown to coach the varsity football team. Wary of women interested only in his celebrity, Brett finds Chris's indifference to his former career refreshing.The last thing Chris needs is to get involved with another pro athlete, but she can't deny the sparks that fly between them. So she agrees to a purely physical, no-strings-attached affair. But the rules of the game change when she falls for him…
Brett ‘The Wall’ Wallace is a retired NFL player who has returned to his home town to couch the Northeastern High School football team. Wary of women after him only because of his past career Brett is instantly intrigued by Chris who seems to want nothing to do with him.
Chris St. James is a retired pro tennis player who has just moved to town to couch the girl’s tennis team and teach high school math. Embarrassed and resentful of her pro past Chris hides it from everyone, and wanting nothing to do with pro anything Chris instantly forms a dislike for Brett.
The Game of Love was a fun, easy read with in interesting story about two people with totally different backgrounds but who are very similar to each other and have a passion for their sport of choice. These two, Chris and Brett, instantly clash. Both strong minded independent persons wary of the opposite sex for their own reasons. Brett, thanks to his ex-wife, has steered clear of women since his divorce. Fearful of what he terms ‘prohos’, women only after him for his past career of a pro football player. While Chris wants nothing to do with anyone from the pro’s because of her over bearing parents who pushed her into a pro career then condemned her for retiring and a psychotic ex boyfriend who is a pro hockey player. Sparks flew when these two meet up but they are continually at odds throughout the first half of the story. Chris is very standoffish and Brett, who get’s props for trying, usually ended up putting his foot in his mouth because of his arrogant attitude. Chris and Brett’s relationship built gradually and eventually while Chris’s background and the reasons for her poor attitude are slowly revealed; after several ups and downs they learn trust each other. There was a lot of sexual tension in the building process and though the sexual relief, so to say, was romantic it wasn’t intense. Brett’s family was a great addition to the story that I really enjoyed, they were fun and humorous. There was also a sub plot concerning Chris’s ex that added a nice twist to the story line.
The Game of Love was well written and well set-up, as well as realistic with some of the issues involved and the relationship development but the quibbling between the h/h went on a little too long and began to drag the story down. I also didn’t care for the heroine, Chris, at all. I don’t think her problems justified such a severe attitude. She was very quick to confrontation, rarely giving Brett or anyone a chance to explain or reason out their actions and even by the end when she redeemed herself somewhat I never warmed up to her. I did love Brett though; he was sweet, sexy and an all-around great guy.
Over all a good read that held my interest, I just couldn't get into the heroine. J
Rating: 3 Wine Glasses - LIKED it but didn't LOVE it
Sexual content: Great sexual tension and a few love scenes that will steam up the windows