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Playing to Win (Play-by-Play Series #4)

Average Rating 4.5
( 97 )
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5 Star

(56)

4 Star

(28)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(3)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

3.5 Stars I have grown to expect extraordinarily hot, pushy alp

3.5 Stars

I have grown to expect extraordinarily hot, pushy alpha males who know how to get down and D-I-R-T-Y while dealing with some pretty heavy emotional turmoil in Jaci Burton's Play by Play series. But Playing to Win, while still a great read with a great hero a...
3.5 Stars

I have grown to expect extraordinarily hot, pushy alpha males who know how to get down and D-I-R-T-Y while dealing with some pretty heavy emotional turmoil in Jaci Burton's Play by Play series. But Playing to Win, while still a great read with a great hero and heroine, didn't quite pack the same punch that we've had in the other books.

Cole Riley, cousin to Mick, Gavin and Jenna, has just been traded to St. Louis as a last ditch effort to keep him playing. His performance on the field has never been his problem. Instead it's his off ice antics and his unwillingness to engage with his teammates. To help improve his image, the team and Liz (Cole's new agent) hire Savannah Brooks to work with Cole.

Savannah is a Southern Belle who prides herself on her professionalism and being able to turn a player's image around. When she meets Cole, the sexual sparks ignites almost immediately. Savannah is determined to keep things on a professional level because her career is all she has. But the attraction between her and Cole is undeniable and she finds herself unable to resist.

I really liked Cole. He had a hair trigger when it came to his temper and his mouth, but he was also a big enough man to apologize once he'd cooled down and realized he was wrong. He was a man who had an enormous heart, but after getting it torn apart early in his career he keeps it closed off to everyone except his family. He was a man who liked to be in control, but wasn't unwilling to accept that maybe someone else might have a better answer to a situation than him. The fact that he could admit when he was wrong or that someone might have a better idea makes you love him.

Savannah was a tough cookie. She has a horrible childhood and was able to rise above those events to become the successful woman that she is today. Unfortunately, those events also caused Savannah to believe the only thing that will stick around for her is her career. While she enjoys the moments of unprofessionalism she has with Cole, she's convinced he will eventually leave her. What she needs to figure out is how to take someone's word when it comes to matters of her heart.

Cole and Savannah were great together, but there wasn't the same level of emotional upheaval between Cole and Savannah that we've seen in other books in the series. When they were in the bedroom (which didn't happen until almost half way through the book), but Cole didn't seem to have that down and dirty trait his cousins possess (if you've read the series, I'm sure you can guess what all three Riley siblings had in common with their sexual relationships in their perspective books). He was more on the sweeter side and needed that emotional connection when he and Savannah were together.

With football season upon us, if you're looking for a great football story with a HOT tight end, pick up Playing to Win. Despite my expectations, this is still an awesome addition to the Play by Play series. I can't wait to read Cole's sister, Alicia's story next.

posted by shannschoice on September 9, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

I am a fan of this series. Loved the last book with the hockey

I am a fan of this series. Loved the last book with the hockey player but this book was my least favorite. I normally finish a book I start quickly and this one I am still not done. I have put it down several times and started and finished other books in between. No...
I am a fan of this series. Loved the last book with the hockey player but this book was my least favorite. I normally finish a book I start quickly and this one I am still not done. I have put it down several times and started and finished other books in between. Not the author's best work and sorry I paid over $10.00 for this one.

posted by azkindlefan on September 12, 2012

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  • Posted September 9, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    3.5 Stars I have grown to expect extraordinarily hot, pushy alp

    3.5 Stars

    I have grown to expect extraordinarily hot, pushy alpha males who know how to get down and D-I-R-T-Y while dealing with some pretty heavy emotional turmoil in Jaci Burton's Play by Play series. But Playing to Win, while still a great read with a great hero and heroine, didn't quite pack the same punch that we've had in the other books.

    Cole Riley, cousin to Mick, Gavin and Jenna, has just been traded to St. Louis as a last ditch effort to keep him playing. His performance on the field has never been his problem. Instead it's his off ice antics and his unwillingness to engage with his teammates. To help improve his image, the team and Liz (Cole's new agent) hire Savannah Brooks to work with Cole.

    Savannah is a Southern Belle who prides herself on her professionalism and being able to turn a player's image around. When she meets Cole, the sexual sparks ignites almost immediately. Savannah is determined to keep things on a professional level because her career is all she has. But the attraction between her and Cole is undeniable and she finds herself unable to resist.

    I really liked Cole. He had a hair trigger when it came to his temper and his mouth, but he was also a big enough man to apologize once he'd cooled down and realized he was wrong. He was a man who had an enormous heart, but after getting it torn apart early in his career he keeps it closed off to everyone except his family. He was a man who liked to be in control, but wasn't unwilling to accept that maybe someone else might have a better answer to a situation than him. The fact that he could admit when he was wrong or that someone might have a better idea makes you love him.

    Savannah was a tough cookie. She has a horrible childhood and was able to rise above those events to become the successful woman that she is today. Unfortunately, those events also caused Savannah to believe the only thing that will stick around for her is her career. While she enjoys the moments of unprofessionalism she has with Cole, she's convinced he will eventually leave her. What she needs to figure out is how to take someone's word when it comes to matters of her heart.

    Cole and Savannah were great together, but there wasn't the same level of emotional upheaval between Cole and Savannah that we've seen in other books in the series. When they were in the bedroom (which didn't happen until almost half way through the book), but Cole didn't seem to have that down and dirty trait his cousins possess (if you've read the series, I'm sure you can guess what all three Riley siblings had in common with their sexual relationships in their perspective books). He was more on the sweeter side and needed that emotional connection when he and Savannah were together.

    With football season upon us, if you're looking for a great football story with a HOT tight end, pick up Playing to Win. Despite my expectations, this is still an awesome addition to the Play by Play series. I can't wait to read Cole's sister, Alicia's story next.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 17, 2012

    Cute but not much story line

    Not a lot of depth but cute characters.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2012

    Good....

    but the story could be told in more details

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 8, 2013

    Great Addition to the Series!

    This was a fantastic addition to the Play by Play series. The tension between the two lead characters is intense and makes the story great!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2013

    Loved it

    Great to see how this series can continue outside of the core family. It was awesome to see how this player could learn from his past mistakes and understand the true meaning of what a team truly is. Great in the series

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2012

    I love the Play by Play series. Good/Easy read. I enjoyed this s

    I love the Play by Play series. Good/Easy read. I enjoyed this series. Compared to the other books this book took some time developing the main characters. #1 was my favorite followed by #4 then #2 then #3.
    The story line in each book is similar, but I really enjoyed how Jaci Burton brings all the characters back in each book. I am looking forward to the next book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2012

    love it!!! When is the next one???

    I love all of Jaci Burton's books. I can't wait for her next book.

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  • Posted October 26, 2012

    Love this Series

    I love the Play by Play series. Good/Easy read. Each book is pretty much the same story line, but I love how Jaci Burton brings all the characters back in each book. Cant wait for the next book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2012

    Great Story

    Another great installment in the series. Jaci Burton is one of my favs

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  • Posted October 1, 2012

    Great weekend read

    I have enjoyed all of Jaci Burton's Play by Play series. She writes with a great wit and sense of humor which makes these books a great weekend escape.

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  • Posted September 30, 2012

    Love This Series

    Strong independent women and super hot athletes...good story.

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  • Posted September 11, 2012

    Great Community of Characters

    The fourth installment of Jaci Burton’s Play-by-Play series, Playing to Win, is worth picking up just to stare at the cover. Fitness model Jed Hill once again lends his “hip dents” or “hip dips” to ignite our imagination of what main character Cole Riley might look like in the flesh. In an interview with About Happy Books, Burton said of Hill’s previous appearance on her book The Perfect Play, “Of course, who can deny the appeal of a hot, sweaty guy on the cover of a book, right?” If you can tear your eyes away from the cover, (or maybe the cover away from the book so you can pin him to your pillowcase) to actually open the book, Cole Riley comes to life. I liked Cole. I didn’t always understand how his past produced his current behavior because he was a good guy at heart from a good family. His family seemed to keep him grounded, but he had this apparent need to act out and it didn’t feel genuine. Savannah’s need to keep a professional distance from Cole made more sense. Parts of this single-afternoon-read were clearly formulatic, but not in a way which I can really fault. It felt more like I could predict what was coming next just from the pacing of the relationship rather than Burton following a mandated script. I admit it did lack a certain intensity; there is no real major conflict that must be resolved other than the two main characters needing to get over themselves. When it finally does get off the ground, the relationship between Cole and Savannah isn’t just steamy, it’s creatively steamy. There are few word choices that I could live without, but they were just blips rather than hang-ups for me. I was pleased that there was some actual football in this tale. I think it’s a failing of a book with a defined profession that never appears as a part of the plot when clearly, it’s a significant part of that person’s life. Burton does bring on some football. As the wife of a football coach, I could have even handled a little more, maybe even as a point of conflict??? Nevertheless, I’ll definitely read the next one. I like this community of characters. It’s not necessary to have read the first three books before reading Playing to Win, but readers who have will enjoy seeing characters they know pop up.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2012

    Good!

    I have enjoyed this series and looking forward to the next. This one had more personal baggage and wasn't quite as humourous as the others.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted May 11, 2013

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    Posted May 7, 2013

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    Posted September 15, 2012

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    Posted October 31, 2012

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    Posted November 27, 2012

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    Posted January 14, 2013

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    Posted November 2, 2012

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