Series: Out of Bounds #3
Author: Tracy Solheim
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Sports Romance
Blurb: In the next sizzling sports romance from the author of Foolish Games, Brody is at the top of his game… until Shannon changes the rules.
Baltimore Blaze tight end Brody Janik is a natural-born football star. At twenty-seven, his record-breaking athletic performance and his cover-boy good looks have turned him into a household name. But Brody’s hiding a major secret behind his charming public persona: a health condition that may cut his career short.
PhD candidate Shannon “Shay” Everett works multiple jobs to put herself through school—including an unpaid internship with the Blaze training department. Strapped for cash, Shay answers the call of an NFL gossip blogger to uncover personal details about the Blaze players. Sneaking into the locker room one night, she gets entangled in Brody’s secret…and swept up by his charm.
Brody isn’t sure what to make of the gawky girl with the whiskey eyes, especially when he discovers she was snooping. His first instinct is to turn her in as a snitch, but she could destroy him by sharing his secret. Instead, he decides to keep her close…perhaps closer than either of them originally intended…
Thoughts: There’s a gossip blogger looking for dirt on the boys from the NFL. The dirtier the better.
Shannon, everybody calls me ‘Shay’, Everett is a PhD student currently working (one of her many jobs) as an unpaid intern for the Baltimore Blaze. She was supposed to be working with the training staff on nutritional coaching for team, but ended up spending most of her time in food service. When she gets an offer to get paid by the blogger for dirt on the team, she sneaks into the locker room and overhears Brody talking to his trainer about blood sugar problems. Shay realizes that she can’t expose Brody and decides to wait it out until she can sneak out.
Brody Janik is a wide receiver for the Blaze. He’s the best and has become a household name. While Brody has watched his friends settle down into marriage or parenthood, he realizes he wants something more, but he doesn’t trust people. In Brody’s experience, everybody has a price and people will sell out eventually and he needs to make sure nobody finds out about his blood sugar problems or he could lose out on his contract extension with the Blaze.
When Brody sees Shay working as a bartender at a club, he gets to see a side of the awkward, whiskey-eyed hairnet lady than he normally sees when she is working food service. He’s always been intrigued by those whiskey eyes, which is why he normally avoids looking at or talking to Shay. Maybe he was wrong, though….
Brody gets an opportunity to save Shay at a grocery store when some guys are bothering her by pretending to be her boyfriend. When he takes her home later, he ends up discovery that she snooped and found out his secret. Even though she says that she isn’t the one snitching to the blogger, Brody doesn’t believe her. After that the blogger ended up posting about their relationship. Brody decides that his best bet is to keep her close, so he strikes up a deal. They will continue to pretend to be in a relationship, he won’t tell on her for being the snitch and she will help him regulate his blood sugar by planning and cooking all of his meals and snacks. Shay agrees, because she won’t graduate if she loses the internship, but she can also use this plan for her thesis.
As they spend more time together and get to know each other better, their feelings grow into friendship and more. How can they trust each other, though, when the whole basis of their relationship is a lie.
I loved the relationship between Brody and Shay. Shay held her own, but she was sweet and innocent the whole time. She didn’t come from money like Brody did, but she was one of those people that took care of everybody. She had some issues with her family that really affected her self-esteem, but Brody was able to bring her past that. Brody was the golden boy who got handed a lot, but wanted to be seen as more than just the easygoing football player. They blossomed together in a way they weren’t doing separately.
I love these sports themed romance books with the sexy hero and smart and pretty, but overlooked heroine.