Monday, June 19, 2017

strictly literary: full count by lynn stevens


another day, another sports romance, or is it? it's actually kind of hard to categorize this new adult story because while there is romance, it's not really all sunshine and rainbows. this one has a lot of dark clouds.

full count is about up-and-coming baseball star, aaron betts, a star player on the westland university baseball team who is injured in a pick up game welcoming rookies to in his junior year. aaron has a plan, and a knee injury seriously intereferes with those plans. all of a sudden he's battling academic probation, dealing with a break-up with his high school girlfriend, and facing the possibility that he won't play his junior year and will miss the draft.

to deal with the academic probation piece, aaron hires mallory fine as his history tutor. she isn't a fan of baseball players, but also seems to know an awful lot about the sport, moreso than the average fan. aaron is interested in mallory from the get-go, but she is hesitant and pulls away anything things get too serious between them.

their romance is definitely a slow burn. aaron is pretty much all-in, but it takes him a long time to win over mallory.

a third of the way through the novel though, aaron makes a morally questionable choice. and this choice drags down the story. i spent the entire rest of the book waiting for that shoe to drop and wondering how the writer was going to write herself out of this. because it's almost irredeemable. and so this was my struggle, because as a character i loved aaron. he's a guy who wears his heart on his sleeve, and i just felt like he was smarter and better than the choices he makes. and he was being so extraordinarily stupid.

and after so much build up and so much stressing about that shoe dropping, when everything does blow up, there's almost not enough time to deal with the consequences. and as the book closes, it's not entirely clear where things will end up between the characters. which is fine, except this romance was already such a slow burn, to end up with only some embers that could possibly spark something or possibly die out feels like a letdown. so actually it's almost better to think of this as fiction, rather than a romance.

**full count will publish on june 19, 2017. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/entangled publishing (embrace) in exchange for my honest review. more information on the book follows the jump.





Title: Full Count Series: Westland University Series Author: Lynn Stevens Genre: Sports NA Romance Release: June 19, 2017 Add to Goodreads Anyone who says they’re having the worst day hasn’t met me. My girlfriend cheated, I blew out my knee, and probably trashed my chance of going pro. All in one day. Then my jerk professor tells I’m almost on academic probation. Awesome. Now I get to find a tutor. Enter Mallory Fine, quiet, a little intense, and my kind of gorgeous. Who also happens to hate baseball and any guy who plays it. Hello, curiosity. I tell myself this will be nothing more than a tutoring relationship. I’m a liar. I want this girl. How hard can her secrets be to unravel? It might be a challenge, but so is getting back on the ball field and I’m determined to make that happen—no matter the cost. Buy the Book
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iTunes | Entangled Excerpt

Shaking off the feeling of disappointing my father again, I took my computer out of my bag and powered up. The first email I saw was from MFine. I laughed at Mallory’s last name. She was pretty fine with that pixie face and hair a guy could get lost in. I opened it and smiled. Dear Mr. Betts,
I hope you made it back to campus without any problems. We will meet in the library on the third floor by the microfiche. Nobody uses those except history majors and the area is always quiet. I’d like to meet on Mondays at three, Wednesdays at five, and Fridays at three. Our sessions will go no longer than an hour and a half; although I doubt we will need that entire time. Most of my tutoring sessions only last an hour, but I always schedule in extra time in case we hit a particularly difficult stretch. If these times are not going to work for you, please let me know immediately.
Sincerely, M. Fine I hit respond, amused by her formality. It was like talking to a character out of one of Chelsea’s silly historical romances. Not that I would know anything about that. Okay, not that I’d ever admit to reading one. Once. Dear Ms. Fine,
Those times are acceptable. For now. In a few weeks, I’ll start physical therapy so we may need to make adjustments depending on the doctor. Is there anything you want me to bring to the sessions?
Sincerely, Aaron #4 I waited less than a minute for a response. Dear Mr. #4,
Bring your books and your brain.

Leave your brain, and we may need the entire hour and a half. Mallory

Maybe this girl wasn’t as stiff as she pretended to be.

About the Author Lynn Stevens flunked out of college writing her first novel. Yes, she still has it and no, you can't read it. Surprisingly, she graduated with honors at her third school. A former farm girl turned city slicker, Lynn lives in the Midwest where she drinks coffee she can't pronounce and sips tea when she's out of coffee. When she's out of both, just stay away.








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