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Ratings and Reviews (11 41 star ratings
11 reviews
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4.4 out of 5
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    Fantastic

    Dexter Blake is a dedicated rugby player. Coming from an impoverished background, rugby was his way out so he gives the game all of his focus. That leaves little time for women and definitely no relationships. The one thing that can get his heart racing though is a woman with a little "junk in her trunk" and Harper Nugent definitely has that going on! She's a big girl. Always has been and she doesn't see that changing. So when Dex asks her out she certain it's just part of a big joke the rugby guys have come up with but it's no joke. Dex wants to know her - intimately! As they spend time together and feelings start to develop, Dex gets a little freaked out. Afraid he's letting his focus on the game slip he calls things off. Now he can't focus for missing Harper. What does he do now? This is a fantastic fun and super sexy read! I definitely recommend it.
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    Sexy, fun, sweet

    I really enjoyed this story. Actually I'm surprised a little at how much I enjoyed it :) I liked the idea of a normal sized heroine, which was why this story ended up in my TBR pile, but the interactions between Dex and Harper kept me glued to the pages. They are just so darned cute together and I was hooked on how well they fit together as friends and lovers. Harper does have a little bit of a hangup when it comes to her size, but it doesn't take long for Dex's obvious attraction to her to get her over that. And it really isn't a huge part of the conflict in the story. It does come back up at a critical moment, as you'd expect, but it isn't over used in the story. Instead she's a funny, caring, a little geeky and a lot of fun. She thinks she's going into her relationship with Dex with her eyes open and her heart closed, but you can guess how well that goes. They have a lot in common and they quickly form a friendship that just works for both of them - it's hard to stay detached when they click so well. Plus, Dex is awfully hard to resist. He's sexy, strong, fun and good for her ego. He's not shy about how attractive he finds her. Not just her body but her mind and spirit as well and you love him just for how much he likes her. But of course he's got a few troubles of his own. He grew up in the poorest part of town and has pretty much dedicated all his energy in never going back there again. For him, rugby is the answer. I'm not sure why he thinks that he's not successful enough already to never go back or that he's got nothing going for him after his career is over. But those scars from his childhood are pretty deep and cause him a few moments of trouble with Harper. You can see from a mile away that Dex's single mindedness when it comes to his sport is going to cause him some trouble. Luckily, though, it isn't over-played and thanks to some help from his friends he quickly figures things out. He's adorable in his cluelessness and his eventual aha moment ... and, just like with the rest of his life, once he's on a course of action he goes full tilt. Nothing is stopping him from winning his woman back and is fantastic to see. (I didn't read the first book in this series, but it didn't really seem to matter much. I might have gone into it with a better feel for the guys. Meeting them new here worked though and I had no problem keeping up. But I'm going to definitely keep my eye out to see what comes next because I have a feeling a certain bad boy may have just met his match with Harper's friend and his downfall could be quite entertaining.) Complimentary copy provided in exchange for an honest review.
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    fun romance

    A hot sports love story between rugby player Dex and curvy Harper. Dex has just one thing on his mind and that is rugby but it all changes when he meets Harper. And although he doesn't have time for relationship bit by bit Harper becomes an important part of his daily routine. But unknown feelings and fear ruin everything. The story is funny and with a lot of hot sexy time. Harper and Dex are both great persons with not so fun, happy past. The story is great trough the whole book just the speech at the end is a little a bit of predictable. I volunteered to review an ARC of this book for Netgelly
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    Great rugby themed romance!

    Playing it Cool is the second story in Amy Andrew’s sexy sports romance series, Sydney Smoke Rugby which features some of the players on the team. This time it’s Dexter Blake’s turn, a laid back charmer who prefers to stay out of the spotlight if he can. Sure, there are lots of pictures out there with him squiring beautiful models to events but those are all photo op setups for the team, not women he’d really go out with in real life. In fact, his type is the exact opposite of the one’s he’s pictured with. He likes his women on the curvy side, with real assets, not the stick thin model type. When he meets Harper Nugent, stepsister to a rather rude sports reporter, he comes to her defense , her stepbrother’s insults spurring him to make a deal with her - date him for show and they’ll be able to stick it to her step-brother and step-mother who are constantly on her case about her weight. In reality Dex just wants the opportunity to show Harper that there are men who appreciate her body type, and he’d definitely not be averse to making their ‘for appearances only’ relationship a real friends with benefits one. But Dexter also has his focus on rugby and doesn’t believe he has the time for a serious relationship. Will he win at rugby but lose out on love? What a fun and sexy story! Dex comes across as a real sweetheart (though, like any male, he still manages to screw things up a bit to give a little conflict to the story later on). He defends Harper and makes it clear that she is very appealing to him in a physical sense. He’s a friendly, nice guy but his focus is on rugby and only that. He’s finally poised to take some big steps in his career and he can’t afford to lose his head over a woman, even one as enticing as Harper. He’s clear with her that their friendship and soon dating relationship is one that can’t become anything serious. Only as they grow closer, his focus on rugby gets all tangled up with his emotions for Harper and he soon learns that it might not be so simple to choose one over the other. I really felt for Harper and her self esteem issues rising from the often insulting comments from her stepbrother and stepmother. For the most part she’s become comfortable with how she looks, and if it weren’t for having two younger step-siblings she’d have just cut the harmful members of her family off completely. But she’s loyal to the kids and they love her unconditionally (as it should be with family) and she’s not going to abandon them. Having Dex in her life makes things a bit more complicated. She wants to believe that she can trust in his desire for her ( and he certainly makes her feel wanted) but she’s been burned before. I loved her job as a mural painter, and her obvious artistic talent. Dex respects that too (something else sorely lacking in her life) and it’s no wonder that she falls for him pretty quickly. They share some very steamy scenes as their relationship progresses. Harper’s got a best friend who has her back and Dex and his teammates have the usual bromance kind of banter that I enjoy in these kind of stories, making for a well rounded tale. This is an enjoyable and entertaining story, with a good mix of locker room and rugby pitch scenes to go with the romance. I'm looking forward to more in this series!
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    Loved!

    Loved this book! This is a very sexy contemporary romance that fans of the genre will love. In it, Harper is an artist with a horrible step-brother. He always insults her, aiming his barbs where they'll inflict the most pain, at her body. As a result, Harper is very insecure about her self image and thinks she is too tall and too heaving in the wrong places. Dex is a professional rugby player who is stunned by Harper when he sees her. He sees a statuesque gorgeous woman with perfect curves. Too bad he doesn't have time to date and will only focus on his rugby career. However, just like the old proverb, when man makes plans, God laughs. Nothing prepared Dex for Harper and she has turned his world upside down. Dex is prepared to protect his career and won't let Harper into his heart, while somehow managing to make Harper believe he won't be seen in public with her. The author is on my must read authors' list and fans of the genre will love this book.
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