11 April 2015

Review: Play On

Play On
Michelle Smith

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What they say: In the small town of Lewis Creek, baseball is everything. Especially for all-star pitcher Austin Braxton, who has a one-way ticket out of town with his scholarship to a top university. All that stands between him and a new start is one final season. But when Austin starts flunking Chemistry, his picture-perfect future is in jeopardy. A failing grade means zero playing time, and zero playing time means no scholarship.

Enter Marisa Marlowe, the new girl in town who gets a job at his momma's flower shop. Not only is Marisa some home-schooled super-genius; she's also a baseball fanatic and more than willing to help Austin study. As the two grow closer, there's something about Marisa that makes Austin want more than just baseball and out of Lewis Creek -- he wants a future with her. But Marisa has a past that still haunts her, one that she ran all the way to South Carolina to escape.

As Austin starts to peel back the layers of Marisa’s pain, it forces him to look beyond the fa├žade of himself and everyone he thought he knew in his town. What he sees instead is that in a small town like Lewis Creek, maybe baseball isn’t everything—maybe it is just the thing that ties them all together.

Coming April 21st (pushed back from 14th) by Spencer Hill Press - ISBN: 9781939392692 

Book & author links:

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Amazon UK * Amazon US

I received a copy in exchange for an honest review!

What I say: The romance between southern charmer Austin and the secretly troubled Marisa is endearingly sweet and charming. The story has far greater depth than I was expecting from a high school romance. Michelle Smith manages to combine the joys of first love with some much more traumatic issues.

On the surface Play On appears like another 'good girl tutors the failing sports star' story, but it really isn't this at all. I wasn't expecting all of the issues that arose but they helped bring more depth to the story and gave their struggles more realism.

I liked the moments with Austin and the baseball team, and appreciated how Marisa understood his ambition and fully supported it. Without getting too cliched; Marisa's journey really struck something in me and I desperately wanted her to be able to tackle her problems. I wanted them to be able to move on together and find their HEA.

The ending made me smile, although I would have liked it to have been a little longer (I'm greedy like that). I loved the coming of age aspect in the story and appreciated the hopeful message throughout the book.

3.5 - 4 Stars in my Sky!


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