Author: Jaci Burton

Review: The Final Score by Jaci Burton

Posted September 11, 2017 by Rowena in Reviews | 3 Comments

Review: The Final Score by Jaci BurtonReviewer: Rowena
The Final Score (Play by Play, #13) by Jaci Burton
Series: Play by Play #13
Also in this series: Holiday on Ice, Rules of Contact
Published by Berkley
Publication Date: September 12, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

In the new Play-by-Play novel by the New York Times bestselling author of Rules of Contact, a star quarterback is torn between his love of the game—and the woman who may be the love of his life.

Nathan Riley is ready to follow in the footsteps of his famous football player father. He’s been drafted as quarterback for his dad’s former team, and his sports future is bright. When his friend Mia Cassidy moves to the same city, their years-long friendship suddenly sparks hot, reminding him of the one night they had together in college that he can never forget.

Like Nathan, Mia is from a sports dynasty family and embarking on an incredible new career—as founder of her own sports management company. Her friendship with Nathan means everything to her, and tossing sex into the mix again could jeopardize it all. But the chemistry between them has always sizzled, and it isn’t long before Mia realizes she wants more with Nathan than just late-night talks and pizza.

Passion has a funny way of changing the rules, and soon Nathan and Mia realize that to win it all, they’ll have to make an unexpected play for love.

The Final Score is the thirteenth book in the Play by Play series and it was another cute contemporary romance that made for a pleasant way to spend a few hours.

Nathan Riley and Mia Cassidy have been best friends since college. They’re good as friends. They’re supportive of each other, they care about each other and Nathan has wanted more for a long time. Mia has dug in her heels and has refused to risk their friendship on a relationship that she wasn’t sure would work out. His friendship meant too much to her and she didn’t want to rock the boat…even though they rocked the boat once in college. So they continue on as friends only and Nathan has put his feelings for his bestie on hold.

Fast forward a few years and they’ve graduated from college and are both working hard in their respective careers. Nathan is the new starting QB for his father’s team and he’s feeling the pressure to lead a team that has always been his father’s team. Mia, on the other hand, has opened up her own sports management business and she’s feeling her own pressure to make the business a success. She’s got employees who are relying on her to keep them employed and she’s doing everything she can to not let anyone down. They’re both busy, much too busy for a relationship but when Nathan brings up that they could be friends with benefits, Mia at first says no but Nathan keeps after it and before long, Mia has caved and the benefits begin.

I liked both Nathan and Mia as characters but my favorite part of this romance was how normal it was. Sure, both Nathan and Mia have high profile jobs but at their cores, they were normal everyday people who loved and wanted to be loved in return. I loved that Mia was a planner babe (I’m one too!) and I adored that Nathan was very upfront about what he wanted from Mia. He didn’t fight his feelings, he just waited for Mia to be ready for him. I totally respected that.

I didn’t understand a lot of Mia’s hangups about a relationship with Nathan. I wish she had more faith in him as a partner but those were just little gripes in an otherwise, perfectly put together contemporary romance. I enjoyed seeing all of Mia’s family and Nathan’s too. I’ve been itching for a baseball romance so I’m going to look into reading Mia’s brothers books since I haven’t gotten around to them yet.

Overall, this story was refreshingly simple. It wasn’t bogged down with angst and feelings and the characters didn’t have any of that annoying push and pull crap. It was a straight up romance about two friends who fall in to love with each other and find a way to make it work. It was perfect for what I was in the mood for so I enjoyed it.

Grade: 3.75 out of 5

four-stars


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Retro Review: Hunting the Demon by Jaci Burton

Posted May 17, 2017 by Casee in Reviews | 5 Comments

Retro Review: Hunting the Demon by Jaci BurtonReviewer: Casee
Hunting the Demon (Demon Hunters, #2) by Jaci Burton
Series: Demon Hunters #2
Published by Dell
Publication Date: August 28th 2007
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Paranormal Romance
Pages: 448
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars

In a world seething with sin and seduction, the chase is on.
Hunting demons for a living can have its moments. Especially when Shay Pearson’s latest quarry is the gorgeous bronze surfer who just stepped out of the sea. Uncovering Nic Diavolo’s devilish side could prove Shay’s toughest assignment yet. Because while she’s acting as bait to snatch this sexy bad boy, Nic’s got a plan of seduction no woman—earthly or otherwise—can resist.
Caught between two warring realms, Nic needs to stay alive long enough to figure out who his enemies are. That includes the beautiful hunter who won’t let him out of her sight. And something far worse: a force of evil with an almost unimaginable goal— possessing Nic’s very soul. But the hunt really heats up when a guy who’s hotter than Hades and a woman who’s afraid of love join forces, igniting an inferno of lust and longing that could send them into mortal danger...or straight into each other’s arms.…

******As part of our 10 year anniversary celebration, we’ll be re-posting old reviews that make us cringe, laugh or sigh all over again.

 

This review was originally published September 26, 2007

This book was blah for me. Not bad, but not great. That makes it really hard to do a review. When I review a book, I really like to feel passionate about at least one thing in the book, be it good or bad. In Hunting the Demon, well, I’ve got nothing.

This is the 2nd book in Burton’s Demon Hunter series. The 1st book, Surviving Demon Island, set up an interesting world of good vs. evil. On the good side, you have the Realm of Light. Charged with protecting the human race, the Realm of Light has an awesome responsibility. Due to the fact that many people would never believe that demons exist, they have kind of a hard time recruiting demon fighters. On the bad side, you have the Sons of Darkness. These are some bad mother-f-ers. See, there are only certain women that can actually have demon children. The Sons of Darkness don’t really care if these women already have families and children of their own. They just kidnap them.

Shay Pearson’s mom was kidnapped when she was a child. At 6 years old, she had a vision where these really scary monsters took her mom. Knowing that no adult would believe her, Shay kept quiet. So when her mom disappeared from a business trip, Shay knew exactly what happened. Thus she started carrying that burden on her 6 y/o back.

Now Shay is a kick ass demon-fighting machine. Brought in by the Realm of Light to fight demons, Shay finally learned that she wasn’t the only child that lost her mother. After killing a Demon Lord on Demon Island, the team now has to find out if the Lord’s son (and brother to the hero of Surviving Demon Island) is a demon himself.

Heading the Australia, Shay volunteered to some recon work on Nic Diavolo. She did keep a few things to herself about why she was so willing check out the potential demon. Like the fact that she’s been having visions of the man, whom she has never met before. Charged with the task of discovering whether or not Nic is an evil demon like his evil demon father, Shay does what any self-respecting woman would do. She strips down to her bikini and introduces herself to Nic on the beach. Of course Nic can’t help but be attracted to Shay, especially since she doesn’t seem to want anything from him (as if). As the sole heir to Diavolo Diamonds, Nic has seen his share of gold-diggers.

After a fun filled afternoon of surfing, eating, and making out, Nic is a little uneasy about the feelings that Shay invokes him him. Because of these bizarre nightmares he’s been having where he turns into some sort of evil creature, Nic is hesitant to get involved with Shay. Shay can tell that Nic is pulling away and has no choice but to bring him in. Obviously Nic is more than a tad angry that Shay has used him. He’s especially angry when this group of strangers try to convince him that not only is his father dead, but he was also a demon. He refuses to believe that he has any demon blood running in his veins or that Derek is his brother. He explains his dreams away as coincidence. Mmmm-hmm.

Kidnapping Nic and taking him to the Diavolo Diamond mine probably isn’t the most intelligent idea, but the team has no other choice. They have to find this Black Diamond which is presumably somewhere in the mine before the demons get a hold of it. If they happen to get it before the Realm of Light can get it, the world is basically going to hell. There will be no stopping it. Unfortunately for Shay, Nic seems to be smack in the middle of it. If her visions are right, Nic will turn evil demon and join forces with the bad guys.

After a few escape attempts, Nic finally realizes that Shay and her fellow fighters are telling him the truth. Of course seeing a demon in the flesh really helped him come to that conclusion. Again, though these demons bear a remarkable resemblance to those in his dreams, he still puts it down to coincidence. I call it denial. Nic refuses to believe that he will turn evil, which is what he thinks his dreams are telling him.

Eventually there is a showdown with the good guys, the bad guys, and the Black Diamond. We also learn that there is actually a Queen of Darkness who is supposed to join evil forces with Nic. The Sons of Darkness think they have her…the archeologist that was hired to find the Black Diamond (having no idea demons existed). What they soon realize is that she’s not the one, but they can’t figure out how they were wrong. Angelique knows that it’s her twin sister Isabella that they’re looking for. So when everyone is distracted, Angelique takes the diamond and runs. This sets the stage for the 3rd book, out in Summer 2008.

It took me 5 days to read this book. That’s pretty unheard of for me. So while I didn’t dislike this book, I just wasn’t in to it. Like I said above…blah.

3 out of 5.

three-stars


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Guest Review: Love Me Again by Jaci Burton

Posted May 10, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: Love Me Again by Jaci BurtonReviewer: Tracy
Love Me Again by Jaci Burton
Series: Hope Series #7
Also in this series: Hope Flames, Hope Ignites, Hope Burns, Love After All, Make Me Stay

Publication Date: May 2nd 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 320
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

When Loretta Simmons returns to Hope, Oklahoma, after a disastrous marriage, she’s determined to remain independent for the sake of her daughter. The only thing standing in her way is Deacon Fox—the man she loved and walked away from years ago.

Since Loretta owns the bookstore right next to his current renovation project, Deacon can’t escape the woman who broke his heart. Throw in her adorable little girl and one ridiculously oversized dog, and they’re almost a family. Only he can’t be that guy—what they had was once in a lifetime.
But love has a funny way of re-opening a door you thought was firmly closed…

Loretta and Deacon were in a relationship in high school and even talked about their future life together.  Loretta’s parents had other ideas for her future and being the dutiful daughter she’d always been she ended up dumping Deacon and getting married to another man, Tom. Loretta’s life with Tom was anything but fun but she got a wonderful daughter, Hazel, out of her marriage.  When she divorced her cheating, controlling husband she wanted nothing more than to be an independent woman and show her daughter how strong women could be without a man involved.

Loretta moved back to her hometown of Hope after her divorce.  The bookstore she started is next to a building that Deacon’s construction company is working on.  Deacon first meets Hazel and loves her personality.  When Hazel gets a dog Deacon offers to help her with the training.  When he’s out at the farm that Loretta bought he offers to give her a bid for some work that needs to be done around the farm.  This puts him on the farm quite a bit between the training and the work.

Deacon was heart-broken after Loretta broke up with him but he moved on. He dated some and started his own construction company with his friend Reid.  He didn’t hold a grudge against Loretta for breaking up with him and while things are awkward with her when she first returns to town he can’t stop staring at the beautiful woman she’s become.

Deacon falls in love with Hazel and would do anything for Loretta’s incredible child.  Deacon and Loretta get closer and soon start a relationship. Neither are sure it’s the best idea but they just can’t stay away from each other.

Another great addition to the Hope series.  I loved both Deacon and Loretta and I really loved the fact that this was a pretty light and airy story with little to no angst.  The author gave us a lovely second chance romance.

I mentioned little to no angst and one of the things I loved about this book was that Loretta and Deacon were so…adult.  I mean that in the best way.  There were no ridiculous misunderstandings and when it came to Loretta being upset with Deacon, he knew it.  He also said to her that she needed to talk to him about what was bothering her rather than sitting at home by herself being mad at him and him not being about to defend himself if necessary.  I mean, geez, what a novel concept, right?  Two people talking things out and communicating – what is the world coming to? 🙂  That was one of my favorite parts of the book.

Another favorite of mine in the book was, you guessed it, the dog…Otis.  Burton loves animals in her stories and this was a good one.  Otis was a gigantic goofy great dane who was a big love-bug.  Hazel had picked him up at the pound when her mother said she could get a dog.  Loretta was hoping for a small dog like a chihuahua but no, Hazel picked the biggest dog she could find.  It was adorable and so was Otis.  I loved him to pieces and wanted him for my own.

Overall the story was great.  We got to interact with characters from previous books and catch up with them so if you’ve read all of the books in the series you’ll enjoy that part.  The book has a lot going for it – adorable little girls, love, romance, a goofy dog and some pretty hot sex scenes.  It’s definitely a book I recommend as it was just fun to read.

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Review: Rules of Contact by Jaci Burton

Posted December 20, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 5 Comments

Review: Rules of Contact by Jaci BurtonReviewer: Rowena
Rules of Contact by Jaci Burton
Series: Play by Play #12
Also in this series: Holiday on Ice, The Final Score (Play by Play, #13)
Published by Berkley
Publication Date: December 6th 2016
Pages: 347
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

In the new Play-By-Play novel by the New York Times bestselling author of Unexpected Rush, a football player with all the right moves on the field needs a better game plan for his love life.

A defensive end for the San Francisco Sabers, Flynn Cassidy is used to being in the spotlight—he just doesn’t enjoy it. But if getting in front of the cameras will help his new restaurant succeed, he’s willing. Now if he could just meet a woman who loved him and not his fame…   After her divorce, Amelia Lawrence is thrilled to start over as head chef at Ninety-Two. It’s just the opportunity she needs to heat up her career—if only she wasn’t wildly attracted to her sexy new boss. Their chemistry might be sizzling hot, but Amelia has no intention of being burned again.

Amelia is genuine and fun and Flynn can’t get enough of her—and Amelia loves every second she spends with the tough but tender Flynn. But trust is a hard fought battle for both of them. Breaking the rules of contact and surrendering to their passion was easy, but are they willing to risk their hearts to win at the game of love?

I started reading to escape my reality and I don’t really need dragons and magical realism to escape. Sometimes a look into the lives of a chef and a football player does the trick and that was the case with this book. I haven’t read many of the books in this series but I’m going to need to change that because Rules of Contact was a fun dip into contemporary romance.

Flynn Cassidy, a player in the NFL has opened up a restaurant and is doing well on the business side of his life but his personal life can use a little help. Every girlfriend he’s had in the last few months have all been a lot more interested in their fifteen minutes of fame from being Flynn’s girlfriend than they have in Flynn as a person. He’s low key tired of it. So after the last girlfriend gets a cab ride out of his life, Flynn has decided that he’s done looking for Mrs. Right and is going to enjoy the success he’s found in the restaurant.

Amelia is the head chef for Flynn’s restaurant and has had a front-row seat to the circus that has been Flynn’s love life for the last few months. She feels bad for him because he’s a good guy and he’s a great looking guy with a killer bod so she doesn’t understand why he keeps striking out with these girlfriends. On top of being a great boss, Amelia genuinely likes Flynn as a person so when she becomes friends with Tara Riley, QB Mick Riley’s wife, she finds herself an object of interest to Flynn himself.

Watching these two grow from friends to something more was a lot of fun. Burton really shined in this book. Her writing style was flirty, fun and was easy to follow. It’s a straight up romance about two people falling in love without a lot of angst or drama and I really enjoyed it all. I enjoyed the romance, the foodie aspects of the book and I really loved Flynn’s family. So much worked for me and while I wanted to knock some sense into Flynn and Amelia from time to time, that didn’t take away from my enjoyment.

Grade: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Sunday Spotlight: Rules of Contact by Jaci Burton

Posted December 4, 2016 by Holly in Features | 5 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we’re running in 2016. Each week, we will spotlight a release we’re excited about. We’ll be posting excerpts and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight

Today we’re spotlighting Rules of Contact by Jaci Burton, book 12 in the Play by Play series. Don’t let this discourage you from reading it, however, as it stands alone nicely. I read it, and I’m about 7 books behind in the series.

Rules of Contact by Jaci Burton
Series: Play by Play #12
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: December 6, 2016
Publisher: Berkley

In the new Play-By-Play novel by the New York Times bestselling author of Unexpected Rush, a football player who knows how to win on the field needs a better game plan for his love life.

A defensive end for the San Francisco Sabers, Flynn Cassidy is used to being in the spotlight—he just doesn’t enjoy it. But if getting in front of the cameras will help his new restaurant succeed, he’s willing. Now if he could just meet a woman who loved him and not his fame…

After her divorce, Amelia Lawrence is thrilled to start over as head chef at Ninety-Two. It’s just the opportunity she needs to heat up her career—if only she wasn’t wildly attracted to her sexy new boss. Their chemistry might be sizzling hot, but Amelia has no intention of being burned again.

Flynn can’t get enough of Amelia, and Amelia loves every second she spends with the tough yet tender Flynn. But trust is a hard-fought battle for both. Breaking the rules of contact and surrendering to their passion was the easy part. Are they willing to risk their hearts to win at the game of love?

Pre-Order the Book:

AMAZON || BARNES AND NOBLE || KOBO

Excerpt

RULES OF CONTACT by Jaci Burton
Book Binge – Sunday Spotlight

She let her fingers map a trail over his shoulders and down his arms, as if she were reading a treasure map. There were scrolling patterns and sharp points, but no words.

“What do they mean?”

“Nothing, really. I just like the ink. At some point I might think about putting some literature on here. Maybe something that inspires me.”

“They’re beautiful.”

“Thanks.”

She sat back and looked at him. “So nothing like ‘Mom’ or some ex-girlfriend’s name on here?”

He laughed. “No. I’m not a momma’s boy, and so far no woman has inspired me enough to ink her name on my body.”
“So far.”

“Yeah. Maybe when I get married I’ll do something permanent like that.”

“You do realize that fifty percent of marriages end up in divorce.”

He frowned. “Mine won’t.”

“So sure of that, are you?”

“Yes.”

She leaned back and he shifted, moving down the bed so he could pick up her foot to massage it. He really did have great hands. She thought about what he’d said about marriage.

“While I admire your confidence, I can assure you that everyone goes into marriage thinking it’s forever. It doesn’t always work out that way.”

He lifted his focus from her foot onto her face. “While I can appreciate you’re coming from a point of cynicism since you’ve gone through a divorce, I only intend to get married one time. And I intend for it to be forever.”

“I’m sure the guy who had ‘I love Patty for All Time’ tattooed on his body and then had to have a giant Chevy truck tattooed over it thought his tattoo would last forever, too.”

He arched a brow. “You know this guy?”

She laughed. “No. I made it up. I’m just using it as a random example.”

He picked up her other foot, and she couldn’t resist a moan when he dug his thumb into her sore arch.

“I think your ex made you lose faith in love.”

“Maybe. I’d think all those women who prefer camera time over their interest in you would make you lose faith.”

He shrugged. “They just weren’t the right one.”

“And you still think the right one is out there for you.”

He wasn’t focusing on her foot. He was looking at her. “Yes, I do.”

His gaze was warm. Intense. And she had to admit, she felt relaxed with him, all that tension and after-sex weirdness completely gone.

“Why?”

“Why what?”

“Why do you believe in love, Flynn?”

“Because I’ve seen it in action with my parents. They’ve had difficult times and through it all, their love for each other has never once wavered. I’ve seen it with my brothers, who’ve all found amazing, smart, beautiful women who love them unconditionally. And believe me, my brothers aren’t easy guys to love. If they can find it, so can I.”

This was a new side to him. She’d seen the business side of him and the sports side of him. In both, he was driven. She’d seen him be funny and fun. But she’d never seen this serious side. This was a man ready to fall in love.

Too bad she wasn’t the woman for him. Because she was never going to give her heart over to a man again. She’d had it crushed once by someone she trusted, and it had hurt horribly.

Flynn was a nice guy, and she liked him. She was sure there was a woman out there who deserved him. It was really too bad it couldn’t be her.

Unfortunately, tonight was just that. Just this one night. Because a man like Flynn could be habit forming. She’d fallen down that rabbit hole once before, and she’d never allow that to happen again.

She gently extricated her foot from his grip. “It’s probably a good idea for you to take me home.”

He gave her a quizzical look. “You don’t want to stay tonight?”

She wanted to. And that was the problem. She shook her head and slid off the bed to stand.

“I have a lot of things to do tomorrow. Early.”

He got up and came over to where she stood, sliding his arms around her. “I get up pretty early.”

His body was warm and she was tempted to turn around and curl into him, let him coax her back into his big bed.
But he was dangerous to her mind and her body, and most especially her heart. So she stepped away, turned around, and smiled at him. “I had fun tonight. But no. I need to get home.”

Fortunately, he read her signals and nodded. “Sure. I’ll throw on some clothes and drive you home.”

She got dressed and grabbed her things. They got into his SUV and he drove her the short distance to her house. When he got out and walked her to her door, for a split second she thought about inviting him in. But that would defeat the purpose of putting an end to their night together.

She pulled her keys out of her purse, unlocked the door, then turned to him. “Tonight was amazing.”

He tugged her against him. “I thought so, too. I’ll see you soon.”

Before she could walk inside, he tugged her close and kissed her. She fell into the kiss, making her wish they were still naked and in his bed.

One time with Flynn was definitely not enough. Her body curved into his and wanted more. So much more. She finally had to break the kiss with her heart and pulse pounding and everything within her trembling with desire.

“Good night, Flynn.”


You guys. He’s so adorable.

he's adorable gif

Play by Play

 

Giveaway: We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

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Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About the Author

jaciburton1_800px_300dpi
WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | PINTEREST | TUMBLR | GOODREADS

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Jaci Burton is happy to be living her dream of writing passionate contemporary romance. She has written over seventy-five novels to date. Jaci has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business that she is delighted not to be using in her previous life of corporate management. She grew up in Missouri, migrated to California, but has been happily making her home in Oklahoma for the past fifteen years with her husband and dogs. She enjoys being outdoors in the summer and she and her husband are avid Harley riders.

Jaci was honored with the RT Book Reviews Career Achievement Award as well as their Reviewers Choice Award. She has been a finalist in the Bookseller’s Best and National Reader’s Choice Awards, and has won The Romance Studio’s CAPA Award four times.

Jaci is a member of Romance Writers of America.

You can find Jaci on the web at the following locations:

Website: jaciburton.com

Facebook: facebook.com/AuthorJaciBurton
Twitter: twitter.com/jaciburton
Instagram: instagram.com/jaciburton


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