Roughing the Passer (Natosha’s Review)

Title: Roughing the Passer
Author: Alison Hendricks
Publisher: LoveLight Press
Release Date: October 24, 2016
Genre(s): Gay contemporary romance, straight to gay, sports, football players
Page Count: 189 pages
Reviewed by: Natosha
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5

They couldn’t be more different, and yet they might just be exactly what each other needs.

Garrett Barnes is no stranger to overcoming the odds. Forced to walk away from a Division I scholarship to take care of his family, Garrett was sure he’d never play football again. When an offer comes in from the ESC Mavericks–a school near his hometown–it seems like a dream come true. There’s only one catch: he’s expected to single-handedly save the worst team in the state.

Diego Ruiz has known his whole life that the deck is stacked against him. The harder he tries to fight it, the more it hurts when it knocks him back down. With a lifetime of disappointment to back him up, he’s stopped trying for anything more than mediocrity, both on and off the football field. If not for a promise he’d made years ago, he’d probably just be some nobody in a nowhere job.

So when Coach Ladner brings in some D1 “hero” to save the team, Diego is determined to show him exactly where hard work and perseverance get you–absolutely nowhere. Despite his best efforts, Garrett’s unwavering optimism starts to get under Diego’s skin. Caught on the verge of giving in, he relies on the one thing that’s never failed him: his ability to get curious straight boys into bed.

As the friction between them gives way to passion, the stakes of their former rivalry increase tenfold. With both men’s hearts–and a state title–on the line, there’s no time for playing games. But when Diego’s past comes back to remind him that everything eventually goes to hell, Garrett will have to convince him that some things are worth fighting for.

Roughing the Passer is a steamy, standalone gay romance novel with a HEA ending and no cliffhanger.

Alison Hendricks has a gift of being able to take some big, bad football players and making them relatable and lovable. They are definitely not without thermir faults, because they definitely have some issues but the way Alison can take a character and make them more human instead of just a hero for others to worship is what makes books like this one so amazing.

Garrett is this optimistic person who brings so much light with him into other people’s lives. He had more reasons then most to let things get him down but that is just not the person he is. He sees a challenge and stapes up the o thhe plate in anticipation of finding good results instead of looking for tb negative. Garrett has not had an easy life by a long shot. He gave up his position at a D1 as back up quarterback to come to a Junco which has not had a winning record in so long that it is laughable. But Garrett never looked back or resented anyone for this choice. He did it for his family and he would not have it any other way. Ecause in his eyes they are what matters the most and it does not matter where he goes to school at or where he plays football just as long as he can be there for the ones that mean the most to him. Even after his mother walking out in them, his baby brother dying in an accident, his father being seriously injured in the same accident, and his fathers mental health not being at the best that it can be, Garrett is still optimistic. He is also one of he best big brothers that Mya could possibly ask for. Garrett is one of those people that has so many admirable traits that inspired others around him.

Diego is the opposite of Garrett. He does not really care about much other then doing just enough to pass by in college and on the football field. He only cares about his next hook up. But what most do not realize is, Diego has been let down by everyone in his life so many times that he truly believes that there is something wrong with him. He has but given up. His childhood was a disaster of epic proportions and the one time he did let someone get past the walls he has put up and he began to hope they let him down also. So he has learned to never let anyone in.

When these two men meet both of their lives are turned upside down and inside out. Diego fights his feelings at every twist and turn and he does everything he can to keep Garrett from getting past his walls. Diego is so used to assuming the worst of others that he is constantly blowing it with Garrett when things get tough. The question is, Can these two men get over their pasts and their issues and come together for each other when they both really need it or will one of them be standing alone holding the ball while the other lets life sack them while they are down.

Alison did an amazing job in this book. I was enraptured through the whole book. She made of these characters lives so captivating that it was hard to put the book down for want of needing to know what was going to happen next. This book was the start of what I predict is going to be an epic series with a lot of heartache and anguish but also a lot of laughter and love. I cannot wait till the next book comes out to see what is going to happen next. Definitely a book I will recommend others to read!!!!

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Roughing the Passer provided by LoveLight Press in exchange of an honest review.

This book was an incredible start to this series. The is a lot of entertainment from the football stand point but there is also a lot of different emotions flying around through this book. Alison Hendricks made these two men so relatable to the reader that it made the book that much better. Definitely a five star book in my opinion.

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Hello, I am an avid reader of male/male books. I do not have a favorite genre when it comes to male/male books because I love all of them from romance, dark reads, paranormal, shifter, threesome, whatever I see that catches my eye at the time. I read books about rock stars, CEOs, military, cops, and just the original plain old good boy types of books. Basically when it comes to a book, I read whatever I am in the mood for at the time. So my tastes varies from day to day and sometimes even hour to hour.