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I Belong


Review: Thrown by a Curve by Jaci Burton

Title: Thrown by a Curve

Author: Jaci Burton

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Series: Play by Play Series

Publication Date: March 5, 2013

Format: Paperback, 340 Pages

ISBN-10: 0425253457 (Berkley/Penguin)

ISBN-13: 978-0425253458 (Berkley/Penguin)

Reviewed by: Candy

Synopsis:

She thinks she knows this player—but he has a few surprise moves.

For Alicia Riley, her job as a sports therapist for the St. Louis Rivers baseball team is a home run—until she becomes the primary therapist for star pitcher, Garrett Scott. Out of the lineup with an injury, he’s short-tempered, hard to handle, and every solid inch, a man.

Right now, the only demand he’s making on Alicia is that she get him ready to pitch in time for opening day. Except the sexual chemistry between them is so charged, Alicia’s tempted to oblige Garrett just about anything. But both their careers are at stake—one bad move and it’s game over for both of them.

Garrett also feels the hot sparks between them, and the way he figures it, what better therapy is there than sex? Now all he has to do is convince the woman with the power to make the call.

Quick & Dirty: You should probably like baseball to read this book. Garret Scott hurt his shoulder during a game and it is up to Alicia to make sure the star pitcher gets better for the start of the season and what therapy is better than the sexual kind?

Opening Sentence: Garret Scott sat in the St. Louis Rivers Therapy room facing an entire team of sports medicine specialists, all wearing looks of doom on their faces.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

This is about a baseball player, Garret Scott who injured his shoulder while pitching during a game. For months therapists have been working to fix his arm, but he is stuck inside his own head believing he will never recover. That is until he notices Alicia Riley and asks her what she thinks of his therapy and chances to pitch again. Alicia is not one to beat around the bush and tells him straight that it is his fault he hasn’t recovered yet. Garret likes her telling him what she thinks so much that he makes her the head of his therapy team. Sparks start to fly the first time they work together. Garret is all for taking their relationship past the professional but Alicia wants no part of it because if she messes up it will be both of their careers that are ruined.

I did not enjoy this story very much. A big part of my disappointment comes from the fact that I am not a sports fan and so I don’t typically read books based on sports. However, I could not relate to the characters either. Alicia is a sports therapist who has always loved helping athletes get back in the game after an injury. I do like that when everyone else would let Garret do what he wanted and acted like it was ok, Alicia stood up to him and told him to pull his head out of his butt. She put him in his place which made him realize he needed to do more to help his own recovery. The thing I did not like about Alicia is that her work came before everything else. I understand that if you love your job you don’t want to jeopardize it, but she never explains to Garret why they should not be in a relationship. She just assumed he knew why they shouldn’t.

Alicia’s character was a lot more likable than Garret’s though. I just could not like him. First, all he does is whine and is all doom and gloom. From the first paragraph in the book he believes he is finished and will never pitch again, but we quickly learn that he has not even really been trying to help his recovery. If that wasn’t bad enough as soon as he does start to show signs of improvement he thinks he should miraculously be a star pitcher again. This would not be so bad if he didn’t take his frustrations out on Alicia and turn from her to work with someone else as soon as things do not go his way. Garret was so used to always having things go his way that when he injured his shoulder and that was no longer the case he became a big baby.

If you enjoy sports then maybe you will enjoy this book. I personally thought that there just wasn’t much to make this story enjoyable. On top of the poor characters, I thought that the book focused more on what the two of them did behind doors rather than the actual romance between the two. I’m sorry if I seem really harsh about this book. I do believe that the author, Jaci Burton, is a great writer. Even in this book you can see her talent. If she wasn’t so good, I wouldn’t want to reach into this story and knock some sense into Garret’s head and I definitely would not have finished reading the book.

Notable Scene:

“Don’t look at him,” Garret said. “Tell me what I’m doing wrong.”

She sat next to him on the bench and laid her notebook down, her gaze lifting to his.

“Fine. You’re argumentative, confrontational, and a general pain in the ass to deal with. Honestly, no one wants to work with you because you fight recovery.”

Play by Play Series:

1. The Perfect Play

2. Changing the Game

3. Taking a Shot

4. Playing to Win

5. Thrown by a Curve

6. One Sweet Ride

6.5 Holiday Games

7. Melting the Ice (February 4, 2014)

8. Straddling the Line (July 2014)

FTC Advisory: Berkley/Penguin provided me with a copy of Thrown by a Curve. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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