Jackson's Trust: A Fourth Down Novel

Jackson's Trust: A Fourth Down Novel

by Violet Duke

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USA TODAY BESTSELLER • Violet Duke kicks off her fun and sexy new Fourth Down series with a heartwarming friends-to-lovers romance between a no-strings-attached sports analyst and the hottest damn tomboy he’s ever met.

It’s no secret that sports analyst Jackson Gray doesn’t do relationships. What is a secret, however, is the reason why. Jackson’s life is . . . complicated. And it doesn’t help that his current hands-off “friendship” is with the cute-as-hell new sideline reporter he’s assigned to train. Turns out, not only is the woman damn sweet, she also knows as much about football as he does. Like it or not though, Jackson has to remind himself that sex is the only thing he has to offer . . . until now.

Leila Hart’s fast-growing friendship with Jackson is something she’d never risk, no matter how unbelievably seductive the reward. Becoming an NFL sportscaster has always been the goal, and thanks to Jackson’s fierce support and mentoring, it all finally seems within reach. Problem is, a girl can only take so much of that sexy-as-sin voice whispering dirty, filthy football stats in her ear before she loses all self-control. A workplace romance with Jackson is a disaster waiting to happen, especially for someone with big dreams . . . and secrets of her own.

Praise for Jackson’s Trust

“A delightfully fresh read . . . Violet Duke delivers it all in Jackson’s Trust!”New York Times bestselling author Jen McLaughlin

“Violet Duke’s writing jumps off the page and grabs you from the first sentence. You will love Jackson’s Trust.”New York Times bestselling author Bella Andre

“Hot, sweet, and filled with tender moments . . . Violet Duke writes heroes who make me swoon!”New York Times bestselling author Kendall Ryan

“Refreshing, steamy, and wonderfully written, Jackson’s Trust is a five-star read! Violet Duke’s writing is clever, original, and beautiful.”New York Times bestselling author S. L. Scott

“I totally love this side of Violet Duke. You still get the same sweet, emotional story but with a little bit of extra sizzle. Jackson’s Trust is a must-read novel.”New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett

“A well-written insta-attraction between kindred souls . . . For the love of football, Violet Duke has scored with this book. Jackson and Leila are a couple you don’t want to miss.”—New York Times bestselling author Heidi McLaughlin

“Written in true Violet Duke fashion, with steamy chemistry, sweet moments, and witty banter.”New York Times bestselling author Marquita Valentine

“Sweet, sexy, and sassy! Jackson will melt you, Leila will make you smile, and their romance will warm your heart.”USA Today bestselling author Kelly Jamieson

“A swoon-worthy workplace/friends-to-lovers [novel with] just the right mix of romance, laughter, angst and drama . . . This author’s writing style is fun and entertaining.”—Once Upon a Book Blog

“Please, read Jackson’s Trust if you want to be blown away by a hot romance between the amazingly sweet Jackson and the cute Leila.”—Chelles Life in Books

“Besides being a good read in general, this story had some fun side characters that lend themselves to future plots of the series.”—The Romance Factor

Includes an excerpt from another Loveswept title.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101887240
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 03/08/2016
Series: Fourth Down , #1
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 246
Sales rank: 250,056
File size: 1000 KB

About the Author

New York Times bestselling author Violet Duke is a former professor of English education who’s ecstatic to be on the other side of the page writing wickedly fun contemporary romances. When she’s not feeding her book-a-day reading addiction, she enjoys tackling reno projects with her power tools, trying pretty much anything without reading the directions first, and cooking impossible-to-duplicate “special edition” dishes that laugh in the face of recipes. A born and raised island girl, she spends her days in Hawai’i chasing after her two cute kids (daughter, Violet, and son, Duke) and similarly adorable husband (their ringleader).

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

What a beautiful little liar.

Jackson Gray kept his face neutral as he continued to listen to the introductions going on outside of his office between the other analysts on his floor and DBC Sports Network’s newest on-screen talent—the same memorable new member to their team he’d first caught sight of yesterday, not long after she’d been hired.

Leila Hart.

The glimpse he’d gotten of her yesterday had been just that. A brief, second-long glance. But that infectiously cute smile she’d been wearing at the time had stuck with him for quite a while after.

Even through his date last night.

Sure, the fact that he’d been out with one woman and distracted by the mere smiling memory of another had made him feel a tiny bit guilty at first—he wasn’t a total asshat. But honestly, it had been such a god-awful date that after about ten minutes in, he’d stopped feeling bad altogether.

Truth be told, his brain’s random instant replays of that one freaking adorable-as-hell smile had been the equivalent of a survival kit for him. It was the only thing that had saved his sanity as he’d braved every cringe-worthy minute with the hot mess that had tornadoed all over his night, smelling like a distillery from the start and stumbling around in a painted-on mini dress so short, he was certain it was really technically a long halter top bedazzled to within an inch of its life.

Sans any underwear whatsoever.

That latter discovery was one he’d made early on in the night when his vodka-soaked date had actually lifted up the back and front of that “dress” to try to find her misplaced purse. Where on earth she’d thought she’d tucked the invisible accessory for safe keeping, he didn’t even care to wonder—particularly not when she also began rummaging around for the gum she’d apparently been chewing earlier as well.

He shuddered through the traumatic flashbacks. At one point, she’d giggled in delight over discovering something down there, after which, he hadn’t just averted his eyes, he’d averted his whole brain as best he could.

The worst part? They’d been a few steps from the crowded entrance of the restaurant at the time, heading in to start their meal.

Lordy, that had been one long-ass, apocalyptic evening.

To be fair, though, he couldn’t put all the blame on her. Hindsight was twenty-twenty and all—pun thoroughly intended. In the light of day today, he had to admit that despite his usual vigilance on such matters, he had, in fact, been completely ill prepared. His fault entirely. He imagined this was why the National Weather Service recommended a periodic inspection and update of all disaster readiness kits.

His was clearly outdated.

Evidently, he could no longer rely on just the two steadfast preparation procedures he’d always exercised before going out with a woman—a thorough screening for any I-want-your-kids-now vibes, followed by his diligent explanation about how he could not, and would not, offer anything more than a casual night of fun.

Had he gotten the memo of these critical system updates, he would’ve been more prepared; he would never have agreed to any sort of let-me-make-it-up-to-you drinks with the woman who—he’d realized too late—probably should’ve been given a breathalyzer after she’d crashed her shopping cart into his at the supermarket yesterday evening.

Stupid him for not having known to be on disaster alert for these sorts of things.

Now he knew to also be on the lookout for: 1) women who started in on the tequila shots at home before going out man-hunting, and 2) women who treated grocery stores as their hunting ground of choice.

Lesson learned. He detested games, and acts, and duplicitous subterfuge of all varieties, especially when it came to women. God knew he’d dealt with enough of that for a lifetime.
Today, given all of that still fresh in his polluted memory banks, the jarring discovery he’d made twenty minutes ago that Leila Hart was standing out there lying through her teeth should have triggered the emergency broadcast system alerting him that a calamity not unlike last night’s was probably imminent. Strangely, however, he was more curious than anything else. Due entirely to the content of what the lovely enigma was lying about.

The woman knew football. Yet, she was standing out there lying about that fact.

He couldn’t help himself, he was intrigued.

He’d first noticed the prettily packaged white lies after their network producer Lloyd had finished explaining to Leila how DBC Sports Network’s exponentially larger main operations consisted of sports-specific departments, a far different set-up from what she was used to. The Phoenix station she’d come up from, like their four other regional affiliates in Vegas, Denver, Albuquerque, and Salt Lake City, operated on a much smaller scale.

That’s when he’d first caught it.

Every time Lloyd emphasized how she’d been hired to work on just football, Jackson saw a tiny little sparkle dance around in her eyes. Along with that distracting smile again.

That’s also when he saw that she was doing her best to hide both. It’s not like she was acting the part of a ditz or anything as over-the-top as that, but rather, she was doing little things here and there to play everything down, to encourage Lloyd’s football “teachings.”
The poor thing probably hadn’t realized what she’d been getting into when she’d opened that ill-conceived door.

It all started well enough. Lloyd had begun describing what the coming months would look like for her, giving her remedial-at-best summaries of NFL drafting, free-agent contracts, and the off-season changes that the teams went through before pre-season. Jackson had watched Leila do a valiant job of looking like Lloyd wasn’t reciting the alphabet to her . . . slowly and loudly.

Meanwhile, Lloyd couldn’t have been more unaware. His broad Southern chest had puffed up over her first extremely convincing you-big-smart-man smiles. And Jackson had given up working completely then to settle in for the resulting show.

One of his favorite parts of the unfolding sketch comedy came early on with Leila’s jaw-slacked are-you-friggin’-serious look she’d smothered almost a second too late when Lloyd had asked her whether she knew which three NFL teams their network covered. It was all very exciting. Would the jolly green giant of a producer catch it, wouldn’t he catch it? A two-thumbs-up popcorn performance all around.

Of course Lloyd, being Lloyd, had taken her subsequent inability to form words in response as his cue to “educate” the pretty little liar some more . . . by proceeding to verbally pat her on the head and coming up with a helpful Schoolhouse Rock–type earworm to aid her in remembering:

“The Hawks fly proudly in Arizona, while Reno is notorious for their Outlaws, who Utah’s Miners are always scared of.”

Jackson had almost pissed his pants laughing.

It just got better from there. Completely oblivious to the flare of exasperation she was barely bothering to smother by that point, Lloyd later suggested oh so helpfully that she make some flashcards and spend a few minutes every night quizzing herself on which sixteen NFL teams were in the four NFC divisions, and which were in the AFC divisions. With a doting smile, his ignorant but well-intentioned producer added that she could give herself fun little rewards like pedicures or wine and chocolate if she managed to get most of them right.

Oh, man. Jackson was almost certain she’d been counting to ten—or a hundred—silently to keep her cool.

And then came the biggie. The spectacular flame ball of outright offended annoyance that Jackson witnessed igniting Leila’s catlike eyes. It blasted into orbit when Lloyd made a passing comment about her also having to learn little in-the-biz things, like how “the Miners had the best defense in their conference,” so she didn’t get too lost during the sideline interview questions they’d be feeding her on air.

The Miners, riiight. Proof positive why Lloyd was never invited to play fantasy football with any of them at the office.

From what Jackson could gather, the inadvertently condescending way that Lloyd was speaking to Leila wasn’t what had made her start to positively spark right before his eyes. Nope, it was the man’s just plain wrong assertion that the Miners had the best defense in the conference.

Jackson had of course groaned inwardly upon hearing Lloyd make the ludicrous declaration. But while he’d heard enough of Lloyd’s bullheaded “expertise” over the years to know not to even bother trying to correct him anymore, this was Leila’s first time dealing with such blasphemy. Those berry-kissed lips of hers had parted, and incredulous disbelief had made her posture go rigid as she’d mouthed, “The Miners?”

Call him the first caveman to have seen two palm trees as a potential goalpost in a prehistoric end zone, but that right there was sexy. In context, with her graceful jawline tensed in indignation, and dainty hands fisted into tiny little hammers, she was easily the sexiest woman alive as far as he was concerned. A woman full of fire and spice who shared his views on which teams had shitty defense? Lord have mercy.

Rather than exploding like a Fourth of July lightshow as Jackson had expected, however, she’d somehow managed to reel it in, gifting Lloyd instead with an eye-crinkling—albeit tightly wound—smile that practically purred, “You’re so very wise.”

Utterly fascinating.

Okay, so maybe he was giving her a few extra points for simply having good taste in NFL defense. But even so, the woman was positively the most interesting person he’d come across in a long while, and definitely the sexiest one he’d ever had working under him.

Shit. Poor choice of words. His imagination was already taking that last dangerously phrased thought and—

“Hey, Jackson. Sorry to interrupt.” Lloyd popped his head in. “Just wanted to introduce you to our new sideline reporter.”

Jesus. Talk about impeccable timing. Another minute following that runaway train of thought and Jackson wasn’t sure it would’ve been kosher for him to stand to greet the pair as they made their way over to his desk.

“This is Jackson Gray.” Lloyd perched on the edge of Jackson’s desk and did a quick lasso motion with his hands to direct Leila’s attention around the room. “As you can see, he’s our in-house expert on all things football. He’s the man you’ll be spending the most time with over the next few months.”

Jackson studied Leila’s reaction to the many random gifts he’d been given by various NFL players and coaches over the years. Most folks, men and women alike, usually fussed over the rare items in the locked glass case. If you didn’t recognize at least one of the names in there, really, you had no business being in the building.

He waited for it then. The inevitable question prying into his celebrity friendships—which swanky bars he went to with this famous athlete, or whether the rumors were true about that NFL bad boy, or if he still kept in touch with any of the hall-of-famers.

. . . But it never came.

Surprisingly, other than a brief impressed nod over the autographed footballs and photos—which Lloyd was drawn to like a magnet as per usual—Leila’s undivided focus was lasered in on the one wall that had nothing but the whiteboard he kept in his office to scribble player stats and game notes on from time to time.
Well, hell.

Customer Reviews

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Jackson's Trust: A Fourth Down Novel 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 71 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great new series!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jackson and Leila made me fall in love, laugh, and tear up. These characters have become friends I will re-read. This is my first book of Mrs. Duke's, I can positively say it will not be my last.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wow. What a great book. I couldn't put it down! So nice to watch these characters grow before our eyes. Steamy, hot and so many plot twists. Our reluctant hero and heroine were a joy to know. Looking forward to seeing a bit more of them in Bennett's book!
SaraBetty More than 1 year ago
Loved it... Original Story Line with lots of highs, lows and things I didn't see coming... Well crafted Ms. Duke... Loved Jackson and if I ever had a female hero it was Leila... What a smart, capable, loving, loyal and on and on kinda gal... Well written, thoroughly enjoyable and the pages flew by... Look forward to more books in the Fourth Down Series ..
Shanrock19 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed Jackson's Trust! I loved both of the main characters, and I also liked the side characters, and I loved the romance. I did feel that the book did move a bit slowly, and some of the actions of the main characters towards the end were weird to me, and I don't really get why the "issue" was such an issue, and what Jackson did to Leila after a certain intense event in the story was glossed over too much for me; another of those things I just didn't understand his reasons for doing, so those are the main reasons I knocked it down a star. When Leila and Jackson first meet there is an instant connection, but Leila meets Jackson when she starts a new job, and Jackson is her mentor at the job, so Leila doesn't want to be looked down upon at work for being involved with Jackson; especially since it is hard for a woman to be in the sports business, and Jackson feels that he doesn't have anything to offer a woman besides sex, and he thinks Leila deserves more than a meaningless hook-up, so they both back off of getting involved romantically with each other, and start a "friendship", and I say "friendship" because they do things that most male and female friends don't do; things like cuddling. I thought Jackson and Leila's relationship was really sweet, and I enjoyed how they developed their friendship before they realized their feelings for each other; taking the time to really know each other, made their relationship seem to be on a deeper level because of it. There are definitely some steamy scenes in this book, and I enjoyed how Violet Duke created some tension by having the characters fight their attraction to each other. I loved that Jackson was alpha, but also incredibly adorable. I was surprised by some of the events in this book, and I almost felt like it was 2 different books because it sort of veered off in a different direction than what I felt was the initial tone of the story, and at first it was a little weird for me, but I enjoyed where the story went, and I was interested the whole time in the events going on. I would of loved a bit more for the ending, but I'm looking forward to reading more in this series and more books by Violet Duke.
firepal136 More than 1 year ago
Linda_RochesterNY More than 1 year ago
*ARC received from Random House Publishing Group in return for an honest review* Violet Duke rocks romance. I love the way her words let you experience what the characters are feeling, like in Jackson's Trust. About the first 40% of this book is filled with the deep physical and heartfelt longing of Jackson and Leila for each other, and the happiness they find just being in each other's company. Being together becomes as necessary as breathing even though they are together as friends, not lovers. Holy moly, is it ever intense! We know he has some secret that he carries that leads him to believe he can never offer anything to a woman but sex, but suddenly Leila is in his life letting him dare to dream of more. Leila has never had anyone who cared so much for her well-being until Jackson and he's coming to mean everything to her. Just when things seem to be heading in the right direction, blam! I won't say anymore because I don't want to spoil the story, so I will just say if you like to read stories with a twist, stories that make you feel something, read this book! I love these characters, even the friends, and I can't wait to read Bennett's story which is coming next.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had a hard time finishing the book. The storyline was ok and i really liked the mains characters.
libriamorimiei More than 1 year ago
It 's a romance fresh, romantic, funny, sexy, very addictive, it's really hard to put it down until you have discovered the secret of Jackson. Jackson and Leila have a common passion for football. She wants to become a reporter for the NFL, but for a woman it is not easy to enter in this world. Jackson works in her department and is almost her boos. Right from the start the chemistry between them is very strong. But Jackson never mixes work and private life. He also hides a secret that doesn't allow him to have a relationship that goes beyond the simple sex. It born a beautiful friendship and he tries to help her realize her dream. But they are likely to fall in love seriously. Leila is special, different from all the women he has known and perhaps caused him to want to have a family, someone to share his life. But is really worth ruin their beautiful friendship? Leila and Jackson are great characters and it was very funny to watch them interact. They both afraid to open their hearts and are tormented by their own secrets. Leila is a strong woman, determined, very combative. Jackson is sweet, generous, ready to help others. It 's the first book I read by Violet Duke and certainly not be the last. I really like her style, she manages keeps you enthralled and engrossed throughout the book. This is such an enjoyable story, well written in an easy-to-read style which is just what I need at the end of a busy day. The story is exciting, thrilling, enchanting, sensual and romantic. It is a great romance accompanied with humor, passion and a veil of mystery. Highly recommended
ali_reads More than 1 year ago
I have to say I forgot how much I love Violet Duke's books! This one got me hooked again and I can't wait to read the rest of the series. Jackson has his reasons for steering clear of long term romances and Leila is just starting her career in a male dominated setting. The first few scenes when Jackson was watching Leila pretend to be ignorant were hysterical as were the scenes with Jackson's friends (especially the intercom). Leila and Jackson's dialog (and inner dialog) also were great fun. This was a fast, fun read with just the right amount of sweetness and humor. NetGalley ARC
caitbellleigh1 More than 1 year ago
Jackson's trust was a fun, quick read. Jackson is a man with secrets, but he's keeping them for good reasons. He's had enough lessons in the past on why he should be careful about who he lets in. But because of those lessons, he's also not easy to get close to, as in he doesn't trust easily. Leila is keeping her own secrets, she's also got trust issues. Having had a cheating ex in her past, and a family who would probably eat her for breakfast if they could, she knows the kind of relationships she doesn't want. She also finds it very important to do her job well and earn everything she gets. She's got something to prove to others, and a little bit to herself. When these two meet, they form an instant connection, but neither wants to screw anything up by having an illicit relationship. But they become fast friends which starts leading to more. But when secrets start coming out, they have to decide just how much they can and do trust each other and what they really want. Jackson's Trust was a wonderful story, the characters were fun, their story unique. Watching as these two figure out how they really feel about each other and working things out through misunderstandings and getting over the past made for a great read. There were lots of funny moments, a few times I wanted to smack someone (but not Jackson or Leila), but mostly emotion and heat pouring off these two people who finally found their match. Violet Duke has written a different twist on the 'sports' romance and she did it with this amazing story. I look forward to reading more of her books in teh future.
TheSassyBookster More than 1 year ago
I don't know about you, but this is one sexy book and I really enjoyed it. It's got the perfect trifecta: gorgeous characters, lots of smarts and sizzle and even if you're completely clueless about football like me, the chemistry between Leila and Jackson still makes for a delightful read. Leila Hart just landed the job of her dreams as a reporter for a sports network and she gets a chance to enjoy being in the thick of all things football. An unexpected perk of the job is analyst Jackson Gray, who lives and breathes sports stats just as much as she does. The only downside? As much as the chemistry between them sizzles and pops, Jackson is determined to keep things platonic between them but it's getting harder each day. Jackson doesn't do relationships and prefers to keep his romantic entanglements strictly limited to women who are content with a purely sexual arrangement. His life is complicated and the cost of a relationship would be too high for him to pay, but Leila makes him want to believe that it's possible and the more time he spends with her, the more he finds himself opening his heart to her. Unfortunately for them, his life is about to get in the way of what's growing between them and not in a good way. If you are looking for dreamy romance with the perfect guy, look no further than JACKSON'S TRUST. Why? Because Jackson has got it all: money, looks, intelligence and above all, he's a really nice guy who always does nice things for people around him without expecting accolades. And Leila is just as charismatic and the perfect girl to hang out with. She's gorgeous, down to earth and loves football. Together, these two are the couple everyone wants to be. BUT, here is why this book isn't 5 stars for me. It's no secret that I love romantic suspense and I love romances where mystery, intrigue or suspense plays a role so to completely wow me, you have to bring it. In this book, the intrigue felt like it came out of left field, no warning, no lead up, no sense of trepidation and suddenly it was there, and quickly done like it was a bump in the road to happy ever after for Jackson and Leila. I really wish that piece had been tweaked just a bit more so that it could make this a solid 5 star book any way you looked at it. In spite of that, there were lots of awwws, sighs and smiles as I read, so for pure entertainment it was definitely worth it. This is actually the first book by Ms. Duke I've ever read and I like her writing, so it's just the push I needed to finally start her other series sitting in my TBR pile. Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
APB524 More than 1 year ago
Loved this story!! Jackson grabbed my heart and at times made me swoon and others I wanted to yell at him and shake some sense into him! The chemistry between he and Leila was a living thing and once they finally give in to what they both have been fighting, it was smexy good! It was evident from the start that both Jackson and Leila had secrets that they were keeping close to the vest. Though I must say that as their friendship and subsequent relationship blossomed, I almost forgot about them. So when everything does finally start to come out, the twists and turns make the story much more than just a feel-good romance. There is heartbreak, mystery and so much more. It wasn’t just Jackson and Leila that I loved though, it was also Jackson’s friends. These guys kept me laughing and also reminded me how I have missed Violet Duke’s ability to weave a tale, develop great characters and immerse you into their world. I love the nod to her Cactus Creek series as well. Don’t miss this fun, endearing, sexy and full of surprises book!! I can’t wait to see what is next in this new Fourth Down Series!
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
Whoa--what a ride this book delivers! We have forbidden (or at least kind of inappropriate) office romance...or is it friendship? Friends with not-quite-all-the-benefits but lots of lust and adorableness? (Seems contradictory, but it's true, somehow.) Then a big reveal, leading to all kinds of relationship cuteness. Then a major tragedy...and possible betrayal. A breakup--or is it? Some behind-the-scenes machinations, a few job adjustment/changes/offers, and...phew! An ending, at last! HEA! Score! (Seriously, pick up the book and just hang on. If you're not totally with one part of the story, it'll probably go in another direction soon...and cuteness--and probably some sexy times--are definitely right around the corner. Just wait!) Jackson and Leila are absolutely adorable together with their mutual love of football and total passion for football numbers and stats. There were times I wasn't even sure what they were talking about exactly, but it was fun to watch them do it just the same. I loved that Leila knew just as much about football (if not more!) than the guys in the book, and loved even more that Jackson realized it from the start and respected the heck out of her for it. She belonged in a category all her own. When you threw in her wit, fire, and football chops, Jesus, she was basically his dream girl. And Jackson, for all his undeniable guy-ness, had his own surprises, like when he picked up on Leila's Fifty Shades of Grey reference, much to her chagrin. Dammit! If women couldn't count on an unreachable, exclusive claim over popular erotica references, the whole gender inequality war was even less fair than she thought. Indeed. The story went a little haywire toward the end--a few times I wasn't 100% sure what was happening or why/when Jackson or Leila was doing something, exactly--but the ending itself made up for all the craziness before. Jackson's "project" is brilliant. And shows that he really "gets" Leila. Sigh. Jackson's best friends were an absolute riot--whether they were hitting on/hanging out with Leila or ragging on Jackson, they were so much fun to read. Bennett's story's next ( Bennett's Chance ), and I can't wait to read it! Rating: 4 stars / B+ I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AliTheDragonSlayer More than 1 year ago
This is the first book I have read by Violet. It started a wee bit slowly but the pace picks up. I’m fortunate I guess because even though I’m from the UK I am a massive NFL fan so the sports talk didn’t go entirely over my head which it possibly would if it’s a new concept. Yes, it is heavily ‘football’ based but we also delve into Jackson and Leila’s secrets. Kinda classic boy likes girl, girl like boy both have enough baggage to weight them down and family dramas are abundant. There are twists and turns, some not entirely expected! It’s a glamorous sports world traditionally dominated by the male of the species so Leila stirred things up a bit. I did like Jackson, he gets under your skin and he and Leila are good together. I did feel it went in fits and starts .. possibly because some of the friends are introduced with the potential for further books in the series. There is a little part to suit most tastes, fun, sadness, tension, romance etc .. nicely written and shows promise for more to come. Thanks to the author and Tasty Book Tours for the opportunity to read this in exchange for my honest opinion.
mimipeggy More than 1 year ago
A riveting romance that you won’t want to miss! Oh my gosh!! This is such a great book. Leila has a well-known, political family. She doesn’t feel like she’s really part of the family and decides she doesn’t want to live around them. Her ex-boyfriend, Grant, just causes a lot of trouble for her. Leila lands a job as sports reporter for DBC Sports Network, where she will be working under Jackson Gray. They are attracted to each other, but Jackson won’t offer more than just sex. They become great snuggle-buddies. But, everything is turned upside down when the network finds out about Leila’s “lock and pick” website. They think she’s using her contacts with the coaches and teams to run the website. But, then Jackson’s BIG secret comes out!! Things really start happening then, and I mean more than what has already been going on! I’ll not tell you anymore, as it will spoil the book for you. But, you’ve got to read this book. It is truly a “front to back” kind of read. It makes you feel like you are right there in the story with the characters; that’s how well it’s written. I will definitely be reading a lot more of Violet Duke’s work.
lisajon More than 1 year ago
As the book state its about two people that learn to trust each other. Jackson a sexy sports analyst and Leigh a sideline reporter who know a whole lot about football. These two becomes friends and more as this great sports romance makes a touchdown. Two great characters with baggage but both great together as they balance life and work. A perfect first book in a series. Lisa
JWright57 More than 1 year ago
4 Star Review I hold my head in shame as I say this is my first Violet Duke book but it won't be my last. I love sports romance so I jumped at the chance when I saw the book was available on NetGalley. Leila Hart lands her dream job as a sideline reporter at DBC Sports Network . She works for Jackson Gray the senior analyst. Leila is every mans dream she is sexy, beautiful and knows her football stats better than some men do .... Jackson is attracted to Leila from the moment he meets her can he put his playboy ways behind him. Can he just be friends with Leila or will friends go to lovers...... I don't want to give to much away but both Jackson and Leila have things they are hiding but for me that added something to this story, it wasn't just a boy meets girl book. I did however find it slow to start with but I'm so glad I persevered because it got better with each page. This is a fun book with twists and turns, drama and anticipation. I cant wait for more from the crazy funny friends of Jackson Gray I was given this book by Netgalley for an honest review
bhillson83 More than 1 year ago
I have a secret obsession for Sports Romance novels and the desire to read anything that might contain romance and has the word Soccer, Football, Hockey or anything like that just adds fuel to my fire. When I read the synopsis for Jackson's Trust, I knew it was a must read. Readers are introduced to Leila Hart or L.J. Hart as she is known in the Football world. As she takes on a new job being a sideline reporter for a network she is forced to work under the hot and sexy Jackson Gray. As the connection and attraction between the two is instant the chemistry is almost unbearable. As the story continues to unfold, readers find out that both characters have secrets to hide that could destroy what could be a very passion fueled romance. Violet Duke does a good job in creating a storyline that will capture her readers from the very beginning and continues to do so as the novel progresses. Her ability to make you laugh and want to cry almost at the same time takes talent. I absolutely loved the Leila as she was such a strong female lead and didn't take crap from no one . Duke does a good job in creating a character with whom her readers can connect with. If you are a fan of romance, friendship and second chances than you would be a fan of Jackson's Trust. If you love football, which I cannot see how you wouldn't be - hot men running around in tight pants, what is not to love, then you would enjoy Jackson's Trust. It is a definite must add read to your To-Be-Read Shelf
BookSnuggle More than 1 year ago
"Jackson's Trust: A Fourth Down Novel" by Violet Duke. This is the story of sports analyst Jackson Gray and sideline reporter Leila Hart. Jackson doesn't do relationships, but is tempted when he meets Leila Hart. Jackson has his reasons for why he doesn't do relationships, but he keeps that a secret. Leila not only is a great sideline reporter, but is an expert on football. Her career is too important for Leila to risk something with Jackson plus she has her own secrets too. Will the pair be able to ignore the chemistry between them? I loved this story. The author gets your attention right away and keeps it. There were lots of twists and turns in the book that keeps you on your toes. This is a great story of fun and flirty romance, secrets and hurts, steamy scenes, and such depth to the characters. I look forward to reading other books by Violet Duke. I received a copy of this book from NetGalley/Random House Publishing Group - Loveswept for an honest review. FYI, contains mature content.
DaneWeimMama More than 1 year ago
Loved this first book in the Fourth Down series by Violet Duke. It offers the reader a roller coaster of emotions & I found the book over way too soon. All the characters are sassy, funny, & sexy. Both Jackson & Leila are strong characters with a desire to make a difference but they are also both a little damaged from events in their past. The book follows them as they learn to tear down the walls within themselves & with each other to forge a true and lasting love with each other. This is the first book I've read by Violet Duke but won't be my last. ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Maria-Rose More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this story! It was my first time reading a book by this author, and won't be the last. I love a smart woman romance, and Leila is definitely that type of heroine. Though she keeps mum to her new boss when he acts a bit patronizing towards her (a self preservation strategy, since it is a new job after all) when she's given free reign her intelligence and wit come through in her interactions with football coaches as a reporter, and make it clear that she understands the game and the consequences of certain actions on and off the field. But she's also friendly, funny, and spirited which makes for a very attractive heroine over all. It's no wonder that Jackson becomes somewhat enamoured of her. She exudes all the qualities he's looking for in a partner - except that he doesn't actually want a partner right now. So he can offer her a friendship with benefits arrangement if she's willing, but no emotional entanglements. That's a-okay with Leila, and sets the stage for some sexy scenes between the couple. Jackson also comes off as a really nice guy, respectful of Leila and always willing to lend a helping hand to his colleagues and friends. And even though he's mentoring Leila, it doesn't stop him from lusting after her either, even knowing that a secret affair between working colleagues isn't particularly smart. But to their credit, they don't take the guilt factor too far, both being consenting adults and quite happy to keep their affair hidden. It's especially important to Leila that they not be discovered, because it's her that will suffer the unfortunate public scrutiny as a woman in a male dominated field. Leila comes from a well off background and her father is a politician, and not pleased with her career. Similarly her mother and sister don't understand why she would want to go into public broadcasting instead of marrying a political wannabee and sticking to high society life. In Jackson, Leila feels that she's finally found someone who understands her. I enjoyed the behind the scenes look at the business of football and felt like there was a fair amount of football knowledge imparted to the reader even without the main characters playing the sport. The first half of the book moves along fairly smoothly and predictably. I thought I knew where the story was headed (and I had some ideas as to what Jackson's secrets might be, why he was determined to stay a bachelor) so much to my surprise the secrets that Jackson was keeping were not at all what I expected them to be! As a result, the second half takes a surprising turn, into a more suspenseful and action filled plot than I was prepared for. And not just Jackson's secrets, but some from Leila come out too and all of a sudden these two people who seemed to be getting along so well mid point find themselves in for a rocky ride. Lucky for us it turns out alright in the end and Jackson and Leila get their happy ending. There were some interesting secondary characters (friends of Jackson) and I hope to see more of them in future stories in the series! 4 stars.
EileenAW More than 1 year ago
Jackson’s Trust by Violet Duke introduces us to Jackson Gray and Leila Hart. Jackson works for a sports station, focusing on pro football. He does not do relationships and nor will he get involved with someone he works with. Leila is the new hire at the station, working with Jackson. Leila surprises all with her knowledge of football. Jackson and Leila decide to hang out together and be friends. Not friends with benefits, as this will be a no-sex, just hang out together friendship. Unfortunately, both of these characters have secrets they are keeping from one another, which keeps them from moving their relationship to a sexual one. I enjoyed getting to know Jackson, Leila and Jackson’s best friends who all live in the same building. I hope Ms. Duke is planning on writing additional books in this series featuring some of these people. I really enjoyed the interaction between Leila and Bennett and Donovan, Jackson’s best friends. As the secrets Jackson and Leila have are revealed the more problems occur, breaking the trust each has for the other. I believe the manner in which Ms. Duke handled their problems and kept the love between them alive benefitted as well as drove this story. I highly recommend this book to all readers. The characters were well written and complex. The plot was riveting and kept my attention to the very end. I had difficulty putting this story down.
MsChris1161 More than 1 year ago
I honestly don't think I could love Violet Duke's writing style any more than I do... it's always humorous, yet real, in a way that feels uniquely Violet even when dealing with serious emotions. Her stories always capture my full attention with a fresh, engaging storyline. Her characters are always witty, feisty and lovable with a little sarcasm served up for good measure. In other words real and interesting. People I can see myself having laughs with over lunch. This all goes double for her newest release, JACKSON'S TRUST. Plus I'm a sucker for sports romances and Jackson's Trust is centered around football. Bonus points, for sure! The heroine, Leila Hart, is an adorable, sassy, independent, savvy, cute-as-hell, intelligent, and tough as nails NFL sideline reporter. She is completely comfortable co-existing in a world that is male dominated and pursuing her dream of being a network sportscaster despite all the male posturing she has to put up with and a lack of support from her family. Jackson Gray is her supervisor at the network and a popular and well-respected sports analyst around the station and the with the team players, coaches, and owners. He's also known to have only strictly no strings attached flings with women. He has secrets that complicate his life and he believes prevent him from ever settling down with the life he dreams of with a wife and family of his own, but his chemistry with Leila is off the charts. His developing friendship with Leila brings him closer to her than he's ever allowed himself to get with a woman... I'm not giving up spoilers, I'm just saying this story made me laugh out loud, cry a little, sigh a lot, and shake my head with a smile at the dialogue too many times to count. Fantastic read you don't want to miss!!! 4.5 stars