Monday, November 25, 2013

Review: Foolish Games by Tracy Solheim

Foolish Games by Tracy Solheim
Series: Out of Bounds, Book 2
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Contemporary Romance Foolish Games Cover
ISBN: 9780425266649
Release Date: December 3, 2013
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Bridal gown designer Julianne Marchione is the consummate professional. But combine migraine medication with a terrifying storm and even a pro like Julianne can lose her cool at a client’s wedding…particularly when a hot football player is involved. Although Julianne wants to put her foolish one night stand behind her, she finds she can’t for long. Nearly a year later, Julianne’s infant son needs a blood transfusion, and she isn’t a match.

Will “William the Conqueror” Connelly grew up with the stigma of being an illegitimate child and he’d never wish that on anyone. Which is why he’s thrown for a loop when he finds out he has a child. Will’s furious with Julianne, but he’s not about to let anything happen to their son, Owen. Determined to do the right thing, he talks Julianne into a temporary marriage. It’s supposed to be a marriage in name only, but much to his surprise Will finds himself bonding with his unexpected wife. Will their newfound passion lead to a real marriage? Or will the ghosts of Will’s past keep him from trusting Julianne?

Betrayal, babies, and blazing hot passion - Foolish Games has it all! Tracy Solheim has delivered an engaging sports romance with her second Out of Bounds novel.

I adored Julianne from the start. She’s a wonderfully human character, meaning she’s flawed and definitely makes mistakes, but she does her best to make things right. On the flipside is Will, a hero I admit I had a hard time connecting with. For me, Will tended to be more caveman than alpha man and that just isn’t my personal cup of tea. He’s also a bit too hostile and quick to judge Julianne. I understood this in the beginning of the book, but I was disappointed that the dreamy hero of the middle of the book reverted back to his initial behavior at the end. That being said, the scenes with Will and his son endeared him to me and I liked the steam factor when he and Julianne worked past their issues and hit the sheets.

A charming secondary romance between Annabeth, Will’s mom, and Hank, the general manager of the Baltimore Blaze (Will’s team), brought a smile to my face more often than not. Annabeth and Hank’s love story was quieter, but ultimately the more powerful of the two for me. The obstacles their relationship faced felt organic to the story, whereas the misunderstandings and blowups in Will and Julianne’s marriage came across as more manufactured.

Foolish Games is the second Out of Bounds novel, but it can be read as a standalone. The hero and heroine of the first book, Game On, do appear, which should delight fans of that story. Personally, I thought the highlight of Foolish Games was Will’s teammate Brody. The sexy tight end stole every scene he was in and I cannot wait to read his book. Thankfully, Ms. Solheim isn’t making readers wait long, for Brody’s the hero of the next Out of Bounds book, Risky Game. Though Foolish Games was hit and miss for me, I’ll definitely be buying Risky Game!