More Than the Game
by Jenni Bara
Publication date: September 14th 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Trending on social media is her nightmare.
Beth Evans, former Olympic golden girl, known for a national scandal and daughter of a rising political star, is more than happy to stay out of the spotlight, living life as a normal single mom in a small Jersey town. The last thing Beth needs is Twitter’s favorite bad boy–Marc Demoda–walking into her life to stir things up.
Marc lives for the three b’s; baseball, bars, and ball bunnies, until the unthinkable happened. An accident destroys his shoulder and his career, leaving him desperate to get back in the game. Too bad no one hires notorious bad boys to coach. With his reputation on life support, Marc finds his saving grace might be the feisty blonde he can’t get out of his head.
When pictures of Beth and Marc’s chance encounter blow up on Twitter, they strike a deal to avoid further scandals and fix their image. But even in the harsh public spotlight, their fake relationship begins to feel real. Beth’s growing feelings for Marc have her questioning if she can permanently handle the limelight, just as Marc wonders if Beth might mean more than the game.
Absolutely loved! Finally, a reformed-bad-boy-turned-family-man story that is actually believable! (And in a debut book, too! That is the first in a series! My cup runneth over… :))
Newly-former major league pitcher Marc Demoda is all about staying in the public’s eye. It’s always been a positive for him…until now. Now he needs some image rehab, and quick. Just as soon as he does a few quick jobs at his dad’s appliance repair shop, that is. Then he’ll fix his image, get a job back in baseball, and start living his life again.
Beth Evans stays as far out of the spotlight as she can–she doesn’t even have social media accounts. A former Olympic gymnast and daughter of a current and rising politician, her image has never recovered from an earlier scandal–even though all the men involved, even peripherally, came out looking better than ever. She’s been content to live a quiet life with her kids and former husband’s family, grudgingly but obediently doing public events as demanded by her dad’s team. But then her dishwasher conks out…
Marc’s never been a family kind of guy, but he can’t get Beth and her crew out of his head. When an unfortunate picture in the press ties the two of them together, his agent and her father’s publicist put together a deal: a fake summer relationship that will fix his playboy image and appease her father’s “family values” constituency. No sweat, right? Beth’s seven(!) “brothers” will be able to keep Marc in line, and she’ll be able to keep him at a distance, right?
I mean, we know where this is going to go, right? We’ve read this story before…except, have we, really? I honestly can’t think of another bad-boy-gone-good story that I’ve read recently that seemed so genuine. Even when I wanted to smack Marc upside the head (much like his best friends, and every single one of the Evans brothers) Ms Bara made me understand why he was behaving the way he was. I didn’t like it, but I understood. And because he was being a total dufus and everyone knew it but him, it didn’t take too much for him to figure himself out in the end–thank goodness. Because that ending and that epilogue? So. Dang. Good.
I will be stalking Ms Bara’s GR page like nobody’s business, anxiously awaiting the Evans brothers’ books. Can’t. Wait!
Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
About the author:
Jenni Bara lives in New Jersey working as a paralegal in family law, writing real-life unhappily ever-afters every day. In turn, she spends her free time with anything that keeps her laughing, including life with four kids, or five, if you count her husband. She is just starting her career as a romance author writing books with a great balance of life, love, and laughter.