Reviewed by Cinnamon
TITLE: Fair Catch
SERIES: The Players of LA
AUTHOR: Leigh Carman
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 200 pages
RELEASE DATE: March 20, 2017
One night of passion.
They never expected to see each other again.
They were wrong.
Tobias Bennett is a quiet and unassuming man who teaches yoga and enjoys parkour. Though he is proud to be gay, an abusive relationship with a domineering man has left Tobias wary of romance, and he keeps to himself in his tidy Los Angeles apartment.
Pro football player Sullivan Archer is Tobias’s complete opposite: loud, brash, fond of the spotlight… and deep in the closet. When a hamstring injury sends Van to Tobias as part of his therapy, neither of them is expecting to come face-to-face with his one-night stand. Now they’re stuck together throughout Van’s healing process, and the close proximity will force them to deal with some hard truths. For Tobias, it’s realizing his hookup is a celebrity. For Van, it means accepting that he likes Tobias more than he wanted. They’ll both have to acknowledge that if they choose to pursue a relationship, their lives will change in big ways.
Fair Catch is the second book in The Players of LA series, but can be read as a standalone. It is a real emotional roller-coaster if I have ever read one. My heart-rate and blood pressure were all over the place almost all the way. I often wanted to get in the story and smack these guys on the head a couple of times. I was screaming some, my heart was melting some more and I was at edge of my seat throughout the whole book. When I thought things are getting settled the writer threw some more twists and turns into the mix. If you enjoy truly angsty stories, this is a perfect read for you.
I love sports themed books and I also love American football so I was pretty excited to read Fair Catch. Van Asher is a professional football player in the NFL. Being gay in one of the most homophobic and macho organizations, he is deeply closeted and only hooks up in secret, avoiding any kind of possible exposure. When he meets young and adorable Toby, his whole world turns upside down.
Toby is a cute twenty-two year old yoga instructor who enjoys parkour and is secretly a multimillionaire software developer. He also has a horrible, abusive ex-boyfriend who still haunts him from time to time.
Of course Toby and Van’s forming relationship has a lot to overcome. Disappointment, betrayal, misunderstanding, the abusive ex, some blackmail, and insecurities all form serious obstacles in the way of their happiness, but eventually they manage to fight it all and come out stronger together.
The writing is solid, although a bit soap opera like in a few scenes. There’s plenty of sexy-time, with well written scenes and good chemistry. Some of the bedroom language was a bit too sweet and unreal for me but overall, Van and Toby are very cute and hot together. My favorite character in the book is Leo, Toby’s best friend. He is a great secondary character, who was a voice of reason along the way and he deserves his own book imho. The emotional ups and downs were a bit too much for me, but everything has a purpose so I think it’s just my personal taste.
This story is a real page turner, and I can’t wait to read more in this series.