Double Play by Jill Shalvis

Getting to first base is a cinch… But getting home will take a grand slam…

Pace Martin is the ace pitcher for the Pacific Heat. He’s got the arm, the experience, and the wins. He’s also got the pain, the pressure, and the possible end of his career looming over him. The last thing he needs now is a
distraction, even if it comes in the form of a tough, beautiful, tell-it-like-it-is writer who sees past his defenses.

Holly Hutchins knows a good story when she sees one, and the tall, dark, and slightly attitude-challenged Pace Martin fits the bill. But when she realizes there’s more at stake than just a win, she starts to see the handsome, broad-shouldered jock in a different light.

Pace and Holly begin a seductive game, but in the face of unexpected betrayal and challenges, they’ll have to find the courage to swing for the fences…

Title: Double Play
Author: Jill Shalvis
Series: Pacific Heat, book 1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year of release: 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Source: Bought at The Bookdepository
First line: If Pace Martin had the choice between sex and a nap, he’d actually take a nap, and wasn’t that just pathetic enough to depress him.

Summary: Holly is a reporter planning an exposé on the Pacific Heat, the team of which Pace is the pitcher. What she didn’t plan on was the immediate attraction between them and how hard and fast she falls for him. Pace has no time for a nosy reporter and her questions but the heat between them cannot be denied. When rumors of drug abuse within the Heat reach a high point and rumors turn into allegations Holly and Pace seem to be on opposite sides and a HEA is far away.
Hero: Pace Martin (lives for baseball, broody, caring, sexy, keeps to himself)
Heroine: Holly Hutchins (funny and sharp-witted underneath an uptight, reserved exterior, tenacious, candid)
Plot: The plot with the drugs is one I saw coming and therefore it was a bit predictable. The world of baseball shown through Pace eyes and a bit through Holly’s eyes was very fascinating though.
Writing: Jill Shalvis’ writing is filled with easy and fun dialogue and unnoticed she slips background information into the story easily and without interrupting the pace, flow or humor.
Likes: I loved the dialogues which were witty and fast. Especially those between Holly and Pace & Pace and Wade. I also loved Wade as a secondary character and am looking forward to his book (Note from reviewer: at the time of publishing this post I have read Wade’s book and it’s even better than this one!). One memorable scene that lingers in my mind and puts a smile on my face, even 3 months after finishing this book, was the scene with the “panties”. If you’ve read this book you know which one I mean and if you still have to read it, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about when you reach this scene.
Verdict: I had absolutely no knowledge of baseball when I started DOUBLE PLAY and I can safely say that has changed now. And next to the newly acquired knowledge I also got to read a touching, funny and sweet romance. DOUBLE PLAY is a great contemporary romance. It is not overly complicated but far from simple either because of the emotional journey both Holly and Pace undertake along the course of the book. However, always with a light humorous tone seeping through. I laughed a lot with Pace and Holly’s verbal sparring but also choked up in the end when feelings are hurt and insecurities roar their ugly heads.
Jill Shalvis gave me a baseball 101 in small doses, whetting my appetite for more on both the romance and the baseball.
Rating: 8.5 out of 10


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