This Chick Read: Sidelined by Suzanne Baltsar

Charlotte “Charlie” Gibb the daughter of a famous football coach grew up around the sport her whole life. Growing up playing, then coaching football she’s always struggled against being a woman in a man’s world. When she lands the head coaching job at a high school in Minnesota she hopes to make a new start and gain acceptance. Beating out assistant coach Connor McGuire for his dream job sets them off on the wrong foot. Underneath their antagonistic words is a common goal that turns their feelings from hate to love.

I love sports romances especially when it’s the woman who plays the sport! Charlie was totally unique! She had a bit of a chip on her shoulder from the years of fighting for equality in her field, yet she was still feminine and attractive. I really enjoyed watching her find that balance between being in charge and allowing herself to feel attraction and then love for someone who challenged her mind and body.

Connor started off pretty hateful but grudgingly came around to seeing the how knowledgeable Charlie was as a coach. He was a pretty quiet guy though and I wish that his personality was allowed to shine a little bit more.

I didn’t love how this novel ended. I would have liked to see them work through their challenges a little bit more so I could’ve really rooted for Charlie and Connor a little bit more. I liked the first half of the novel a lot but the ending left me feeling a little bit let down because it wrapped up so simply. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a free copy of this ARC through NetGalley and the publisher for my honest review and it was honest!

Click this link to purchase!* Sidelined

Copyright 2019 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

This Chick Read: The Hot Shot (Game On #4) by Kristen Callihan

Chess Copper is photographing players from her local pro football team naked for their annual charity calendar. Tough job but someone’s got to do it! When she meets Finn, the QB for the team there is instant chemistry, but a miscommunication gets their relationship off on the wrong foot. As she tries to make him more comfortable with the shoot, she see’s that he’s actually just a bit nervous and through their conversation realizes that behind that pretty face is a really nice guy that she might want to get to know better. There’s one problem. Chess is looking for a relationship and Finn is a no strings attached kind of guy…at first.

I loved the slow build up of Chess and Finn’s friendship. I am a firm believer in being friends before becoming lovers and Kristen Callihan hit that trigger for me. Finn is a self described one night stand man and even though Chess finds him attractive she determinedly put him in the hands off category and Finn has his work cut out for him to make her see him in another light. When tragedy hits and Chess needs a place to stay their close quarters help speed things along from friendship into love.

It’s been a couple of years since I’ve read one of the Game On books, but when a couple of characters showed up in this novel I could easily remember their story. It helped a bit that this novel’s timeline paralleled Dex and Fiona’s from the Game Plan. It was kind of fun to listen to Dex talk about his budding relationship when we already knew how that relationship turned out.

If you are a fan of this series you will like The Hot Shot. Was it my favorite? No, I still like The Game Plan the best. However, I liked Finn and Chess together and really rooted for them to find their happily ever after and was happy when they did.


The Hot Shot

Click this link to purchase! The Hot Shot

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chick Read: The Hurricane by R.J. Prescott

Emily is working double shifts to make money to finish her education. Waiting tables does not come easy as Emily is so shy she can barely speak to her customers, but one cantankerous old man breaches her silence and they become unlikely friends. Through this friendship he offers her a job as the bookkeeper at his gym. A job that requires her to hold her own among a group of rowdy young men. One of those men is up and coming fighter Cormac “The Hurricane” O’Connell. He has had his eye on this sweet quiet waitress and when she lands in his path he makes every effort to be her friend.

This novel really surprised me. The cover fooled me, making me think this novel would be all “romance”. It was more of a slow burn novel. These characters were from the wrong side of the tracks, so there was some coarse language, but the pace of the novel was slow and easy, just as you’d imagine a guy like O’Connell would have to be to approach a girl like Emily. He eased his way into her heart which made this novel different and kept me engaged.

There was also some seriousness to the reasons why Emily was so gun shy. She came from an abusive background, which made her falling for O’Connell kind of unrealistic, but again, the pace of the story made me overlook that fact. As she began to trust him, I did too. He wasn’t really the hard ass he portrayed himself to be.

Another aspect of this story that I really liked was her relationship to the gym owner Danny. Although a grumpy character he was really the father she always wanted and their little one on one scenes were sweet, really adding to the depth of Emily’s character.

If you are looking for a sports romance with character depth and heart, this is a great fit. I have not read a novel by R.J. Prescott previously and didn’t have any expectations, so I was pleasantly surprised that The Hurricane had the depth and emotional impact of a Kristen Callihan or J.T. Geissinger novel. I really enjoyed this discovery and look forward to reading more. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

The Hurricane

Click this link to purchase! The Hurricane

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

I am an Amazon associate and will receive a small stipend if you purchase this novel through the above link.

This Chick Read: Score (San Francisco Thunder #1) by Victoria Denault

When Zooey was a teenager she rebelled in all ways. The daughter of a minister, she liked to cross the line. Now, going through a hellish divorce, Zoey runs into the sisters of a childhood crush, Jude Braddock. Jude hearing about his sisters run in with Zoey, immediately flashes back to that one night… the problem is, Zoey is no longer the same girl and Jude is not the same boy.

Jude is a professional hockey player and gets all of the benefits that go along with that role. Tons of one night stands have given him a rotten reputation in the news. When he finds Zoey again, he spends hours of time trying to get her into bed. However, Zoey is going through a divorce, and while she is definitely attracted to Jude she is not going to break those vows before the papers are signed. Her dedication gives the two of them time to settle down and actually get to know each other again. Jude finds himself in a new role of supporter and friend. A role that does not come very easily to him.

I have to admit, I struggle with reading about sluts, whether they are male or female. Spending time in Jude’s head as he strategizes on how he wants to get Zoey in bed only annoyed me, but also being inside his head while he struggled with how to be a good friend to Zoey while she was fighting feelings of insecurity over her failed marriage, redeemed him a little. There was more to his storyline than just sex; trust issues with his teammates, sisters who were too much into his business, and his own feeling of low self esteem even though he was a pro hockey player. All of these things added to the story giving it more of a plot than he trying to sleep with Zoey, but unfortunately that was still the overriding theme.

Zoey was really forgiving of all of Jude’s sexual shenanigans and in fact was kind of turned on by his aggressiveness. Totally not my thing.  I found myself overlooking and skimming through all of the sexy scenes trying to find heart.  I did really like Zoey’s character. The contrast between a wild teen and a conservative adult who struggled with her identity and self esteem was interesting. The Jude who helped her find herself again, I liked. I just wish that we didn’t have to dig through so much of slutty Jude to find that guy. Zoey was the girl that got away for Jude, and the fact that she still meant so much to him after all of these years was sweet. Together as a couple, they did seem to bring out the best in each other and that was why I stuck with the book.

I do love sports romances and find it interesting that a lot of authors go the slutty male character route. Is that attractive to women? I guess?  Maybe some women like the fantasy that a good woman can tame him? I like the fantasy of “this couple brings the best out in each other” and that’s why I gave it ❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!  Score (San Francisco Thunder) Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chick Read : Pucked by Helena Hunting

Violet Hall’s brother is a Pro hockey player, so she isn’t blind to their ways. Her own brother being a perfect example of a man over sampling the very available ladies. When she travels to see her brother play, she meets Alex, a teammate of her brothers. After a semi innocent flirtation she ends up having a one night stand that turns into a relationship.

I have heard about this book forever. At least it seems like forever! Finally, i decided I was going to get this book off my kindle and see what everyone has been talking about. I’ll admit to liking sports romances. The men are Alpha and their love interest usually more than holds her own. This is certainly true of Alex and Violet in Pucked, but this pair had their roles reversed. Violet was the foul mouthed Alpha chick and Alex, although tough, had a heart of gold and was the more sensitive of the two. I will admit that Violets language was really disconcerting. It took me more time than I liked to get used to it and actually see the humor in her words.  After awhile I smiled a bit at her antics, but still didn’t like the language. Why is it more acceptable for men to be portrayed this way? I doubt I’d have thought twice about Alex using bad language. Maybe its because  Violets parents were kind of abnormal, an oversexed mother and a step father who is a scout for the minors, so I guess it wasn’t that out of the ordinary for her to be crass.

Alex on the other hand was wonderful. He saw something in Violet that he needed to give him balance and he went after it. The perfect fantasy man, or at least in my fantasies!  Lol.  His family was also different, although in a different way than Violets, but it was something they had in common.

The two of them together were fun. I saw Violet through Alex’s eyes, making their romance more believable and real. Helena Hunting has a deft hand at portraying humor through dialog, making the latter half of the novel really enjoyable, but I did have that brief hiccup in the beginning with language, so I am only giving this a ❤️❤️❤️❣️.

Click link to purchase! Pucked: The Pucked Series, Book 1

Copyright 2017 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved.

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

Blog Book Club : Kulti by Mariana Zapata (A three blog review!)

A few weeks ago on my Sunday Commentary I asked for my fellow bloggers to help me choose a book to read off my TBR. That post started a discussion with Donna @ Heron There & Everywhere about the book Kulti. It’s been sitting on my kindle for a couple of years and funny enough it was sitting on hers too! Recently I read and reviewed Zapata’s Wall of Winnipeg and Me and was loving her slow burn love stories. It wasn’t very hard for Donna to convince me to read that book together. We asked if anyone else wanted to join in and Sarah Ferguson and Choppy chimed in and we all decided to post our reviews on the same date, today!

If you would like to read all of our reviews, click on each name.

Donna @ Heron There and Everywhere

Sarah @ Travels with Choppy

This Chick’s review of Kulti by Mariana Zapata

Sal Casillas grew up idolizing star soccer player Reiner Kulti and dreaming of one day playing pro soccer. She works hard for that dream and when the story starts she is in fact an aging (at 27!)  pro soccer player whose team just hired Reiner Kulti as their assistant coach. Sal is beyond excited, never believing she’d get the chance to meet her idol in person, and be coached by him. Well, things don’t start off that well. Kulti comes to all the practices but doesn’t interact with the team at all, he’s actually kind of an ass! One day, her dad comes to watch her play, excited that he has the chance to meet Kulti. Sal hadn’t had the heart to tell her father how awful Kulti was being to the team. When Kulti is rude to her father Sal hits the wall. She walks up to him and very precisely, and with the utmost respect (he was her coach after all!) tells him off. After that moment something changed in him and they slowly started to become friends. Until they became more.

First I have to exclaim over how much fun it was to read a sports romance where the female protagonist was the pro player! It gave a whole different vibe to the story. We were given some backstory about Sals rise up through the ranks of pro soccer and a ton of backstory between she and a girl on the National team. I won’t spoil the story but I will say ” what a bitch!” I wanted to give Amber a big kick! Growing up playing soccer myself, and having those same kind of dreams about going pro I wonder if that is part of the reason why I loved this book so much. Then, I’d keep reading and realized I was really enjoying the building friendship between Sal and Rey. Sal was so surprised at their relationship, and the fact that this man wanted to be her friend that she wore blinders to the fact that he was deeply in love with her. Totally clueless and I loved her for that.  And him. After a rough start Rey ended up being my dream guy too.

If, like me, you have put this book on the back burner, PICK IT UP! It will not disappoint!


I’m going to pop on over to Donna and Sarah’s blog to see if they liked this book as much as I did. If you have read Kulti and want to chime in with your thoughts, we’d love to hear them!

Buy this book on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kobo!

Copyright 2017 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chick: Take ONE book off your TBR and join our discussion!

Yesterday in my Sunday Commentary post an idea germinated between Donna @ Heron There & Everywhere and me. My post Lets Talk Books was a brief post asking for your help on what to read next. I gave six choices and Donna commented that she’d had Kulti by Mariana Zapata on her kindle for awhile and maybe we should read it together? I thought that sounded like a fun idea. We could read and review it, and link to each other’s posts!

If both Donna and I own this book and have let it sift to the bottom of our TBR pile,  how many other bloggers also have it, want to read it, and just haven’t gotten around to it?

Read it with us!

Rules! There aren’t really any but the following…

1) Read Kulti by Mariana Zapata

2) Post your review on May 15, 2017

3) Link back to Donna’s and my blog, and we’ll add your review links to ours!

Please let me know in a comment below if you are going to take part. I would love to belong to a book club with my fellow bloggers! But, if it’s just Donna and I, I’ll expect you all to read our reviews, like them, and be super jealous that we took one book off our TBR’s!

I look forward, to reading your review of this book!

Here’s a synopsis of Kulti to get you excited to start reading. I love sports romances, and this one has a twist! Our protagonist playing sports is female….

“Trust me, I’ve wanted to punch you in the face a time or five.”

When the man you worshipped as a kid becomes your coach, it’s supposed to be the greatest thing in the world. Keywords: supposed to.

It didn’t take a week for twenty-seven-year-old Sal Casillas to wonder what she’d seen in the international soccer icon—why she’d ever had his posters on her wall, or ever envisioned marrying him and having super-playing soccer babies.

Sal had long ago gotten over the worst non-break-up in the history of imaginary relationships with a man that hadn’t known she’d existed. So she isn’t prepared for this version of Reiner Kulti who shows up to her team’s season: a quiet, reclusive shadow of the explosive, passionate man he’d once been.

Nothing could have prepared her for the man she got to know.

Or the murderous urges he brought out in her.
This was going to be the longest season of her life.

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: Let’s Talk books!

When I first started blogging it was because I loved to pass on a great book to my friends. Are you one of those people who can have a conversation with anyone about anything? I am. It’s a part of my job to entertain, make people like me, and hopefully buy what I’m selling. Get your minds out of the gutter! I sell advertising! Which does require me to talk, but I’ve really noticed that when I ask or get asked about the last book I’ve read, my whole persona changes. I sit up straighter, smile and start glowing about a good book. So when I started this blog, I thought I’d be conversing with people who read and enjoy books like I do. And I am! I even occasionally come across someone who is as infatuated with a book as I am, which is fun, but it doesn’t happen as often as I thought it would.

So I’m going to try something a bit different for this weeks Sunday Commentary. I’d like you all to choose my next book..  If you have read any of the following books and think it was awesome, so-so, or awful, give it a shout out!  I will read what the majority chooses, review it, link it back to you all, and lets chat! These are books I have on my TBR, kindle, or have gotten as gifts and are ready to read! I’ve chosen six, because, well, I had gotten to five when I skimmed down my Kindle to the Z’s and saw a Mariana Zapata book that has been sitting unread for over a year. So I added it! You’ve got six titles to choose from, and I tried to mix up the genres a bit.

1)  I read the third book in this series first and it was great! Makes me want to start from the beginning of the series.

2) I read and reviewed Now That It’s You and liked this authors writing style, so I picked this one up on sale… awhile ago. Lol.

3)  I have had this book for a few months. It was part of my Uppercase Box subscription and I still haven’t gotten to it…

4)  I received this book for free at the RT Convention LAST year. I’m heading to this year’s convention on 4/30…

5)  this was on sale on Amazon for .99 and I saw so many great reviews… 

6)  I do love sports romances, and had heard great things about this author. Then I read the Wall of Winnipeg and Me, which was exceptional! I just need to get to it!

Ok, folks, what will it be? What book did you love? Love to hate? Or wished was just a touch better? OR, is one of these books on your own TBR list? Read it with me!  

Let me know which is your choice, I’ll read it, review it and let’s talk about it!

I can’t wait to read what you choose…


This Chick Read: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata

Vanessa was hired to be Aiden’s personal assistant. Aiden, known as the Wall of Winnipeg in the NFO (a fictional football league) is as stoic as his nickname makes him sound. He’s built like a wall, all muscle mass, but he has as much personality as a wall as well! Vanessa has worked for him for two years and even though they spend massive amounts of time together, he has never tried to get to know her, be pleasant to her, or even crack a smile. Continue reading “This Chick Read: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata”

This Chick Read: Shut Out: A Bayard Hockey novel by Kelly Jamieson

Kelly Jamieson’s first book in the Bayard Hockey series has a great story, relatable characters, and delivers a serious mhessage. Shut Out is not your typical sex with puck bunnies kind of storyline ( yes, they really call them puck bunnies).  There was a lot of action, both on and off the ice, but the author’s storyline about consensual sex, gave this novel a very serious subject. Continue reading “This Chick Read: Shut Out: A Bayard Hockey novel by Kelly Jamieson”