Making the Play

Making the Play

by T. J. Kline

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T.J. Kline launches a brand new series with the charming story of a NFL player who finds love when he least expects it…

Grant McQuaid has dedicated his entire life to his football career. Now an injury threatens his place on the team and he’s forced to return home to rehabilitate. But when he meets his “biggest fan,” a precocious, blue-eyed, hearing impaired boy named James—and his beautiful mother, Bethany—Grant begins to question whether football is the future he still wants.

Bethany Mills has been doing just fine since her husband walked out on them… and she definitely doesn’t need another man to disappoint her—or her son. But when James runs into his hero at the park, Bethany admits there is a void in her son’s life that she just can’t fill. Her attraction to the handsome football star is undeniable, but a man in the limelight is the last thing she wants for herself, or James.

Grant doesn’t want to subject Bethany to the chaos of dating a professional athlete. But the more time he spends with her and James, the harder it is to resist making a play for her heart…

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062651808
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 09/27/2016
Series: Hidden Falls , #1
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 222,736
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

T. J. Kline was bitten by the horse bug early and began training horses at fourteen—as well as competing in rodeos and winning several rodeo queen competitions—but has always known writing was her first love. She also writes under the name Tina Klinesmith. In her spare time, she can be found spending as many hours as possible laughing hysterically with her husband, teens, and their menagerie of pets in Northern California. That is, when she isn't running around the California Gold Country researching new stories.

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Making the Play 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the story
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really enjoyed this book! Loved Grant & Bethany's story. Definitely recommend!
BooksAndSpoons More than 1 year ago
A delightful and engaging story about new beginnings in life, new chances, about football, family, and love in a small town USA. Young hearing impaired James gave such a rich nuance to the tale with his braveness, and ability to face the adversity in life. He is sweet, adorable, and smart, and stole the show completely. The love, respect, and caring that is developing between James and Grant was mutual, with a little hero worship mixed in. I loved watching those two find their way to each other's hearts and become the unit they were. And Grant was as easy to love as James. They were so much alike, even though they weren't biological father and son. He was charming, caring, protective, and fun. He showed his tender and vulnerable side with no shame, and when he asked Bethany to be careful with his heart if she wasn't in it for good because he was falling hard - I did as well, fall hard for him. Bethany, her I struggled with. I felt like she was hindering her son to be himself, by the overflowing protectiveness. And I understood her issues with trust, to the point, but her ability to think that it was all about her, when Grant wanted to spent time with James, that went too far for me, since it happens again and again. It just got awkward when she kept thinking Grant was using James to get to her. The story wasn't glorifying the professional football players lifestyle but painted a realistic and believable picture of it. I really liked that Grant wasn't made into a millionaire ballplayer, but one with realistic concerns when career might come to the end. I am not a fan in general of a third person drama, or the main characters dating others after the initial attraction. So that aspect of the storyline got me to wince. It wasn't anything major, but I got the impression that the games Grant and Bethany were playing hurt a third person in the process. The feelings between Grant and Bethany were developing fast and furious. I didn't even realize how little time had passed until it was mentioned in the story that they met only seven days ago. But the storyline is built in such way that at the end I was happily swooning and completely thrilled for the characters, believing in them and in their love for each other, and cheering them on. I truly enjoy the author's voice, the way the stories flow, move, and develop. The love and passion are always fierce, and your emotions get involved as the stories progress. This story was a great setup for the new series, that I will look forward to following. ~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
Nicolerko More than 1 year ago
This book was highly enjoyable. I just loved the characters. James, Bethany's little boy was too precious. Then you add in a hunky football player you just have the right recipe going for this book. Bethany is leary to start anything with a man and she has good reasons too, but being near Grant makes her start to realize what she's missing out on. Grant is trying make a comeback in football after an injury so staying in his small hometown is temporary. The one problem Bethany and James make it come to light something he never knew he wished for, a family. How can he start anything when he won't be around long? I just loved his friendship he develops with James, just priceless. This is a make feel good story and it's exactly the type of book I've been craving.
JensReadingObsession More than 1 year ago
If you love heroes that have can have a bond with a child just as special as the one with the mom, you must read this book! Grant and James bond instantly over football, but that quickly turns into a special relationship that rivals the love he feels for Bethany. That bond is what helps Grant bring down the barriers Bethany put up after being abandoned by her husband after they found out James was deaf as an infant. It is amazing how resilient kids can be, and Ms. Kline does a wonderful job of conveying that. Grant has personal issues that complicated his relationship, but most of it was in his head and he was frustrating at times. Overall, a great start to a new series, and since Grant has quite a few siblings, I'm hoping to see them in future books. I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book. I was not compensated for this review, all conclusions are my own.
JenPH More than 1 year ago
Grant McQuaid refuses to listen to what the experts and analysts are saying about his career. He knows his injury was serious and at thirty-two, he isn't exactly a spring chicken. But he's been working out harder than ever, needing to prove to everyone that he's still more than capable of returning to his team in Memphis. In a few weeks, he's headed back for his doctor's appointment and he's hoping he'll get the go-ahead to start training camp. Then he meets little James Mills, who happens to be a fan of his. His wary mother, Bethany, maybe not so much. But there's something about the precocious kid who loves football and uses sign language better than Grant's rusty knowledge of it can keep up and his protective mother that Grant can't stay away from. But with Grant's future in limbo, he knows better than to pursue Bethany. Bethany Mills has spent six years fortifying the walls around her and her son. She and James have already experienced rejection and abandonment courtesy of her ex-husband. With only her parents to lean on, Bethany got her teaching degree and made the move from Tennessee to California in order to create a life for herself and James. At twenty-six, she doesn't want to make time for dating and no man has caught her attention anyway. That is, until she comes face to face with NFL star Grant McQuaid. He doesn't just want to get to know her; he's genuinely interested in spending time with her son, not merely using him as a way to get closer to her. As much as she tries to keep him out of their lives, Grant has formed a special bond with James, and if Bethany's honest with herself, he's breaking down all her barriers and that terrifies her. This was my first T.J. Kline read but I fell in love with the town of Hidden Falls and the McQuaid family, who I assume and hope the rest of the series will be about, so this definitely won't be the last. Grant wasn't your typical cocky professional jock. Yes, he was confident, but he was also humble and I loved how he honestly wanted to be with James and not just Bethany. I liked how Bethany didn't immediately swoon for the guy, and that Grant had to earn her trust over time. The story didn't play out in the way that I was expecting, with the author surprising me a few times when it came to the direction she took this small town romance. The writing and development of both the story and the characters were excellent. Everything about Making the Play won me over and I can't wait to find out who's story is up next. This gets five stars. ♥
RomanticReadsandSuch More than 1 year ago
Contemporary romance readers won’t be surprised at how this story flows, but they will appreciate the special things that make it a fun read. Bethany is a wonderful mom (and her son is one of the highlights of the book), but she’s been hiding her heart away. Meeting super-sexy Grant, who shows real interest in her son as a person, shakes things up. She struggles a little with opening up and I have to say that once she does she shows more patience than me to put up with Grant’s shenanigans. While he may be great with James, Grant does seem a little lacking in the relationship department. Which is to be expected since this is really his first true romance. He’s spent so much of his life focused on football that he never really got involved with a woman. His hot and cold attitude, stubbornness, minor fibs, and lack of communication definitely cause him a ton of troubles … but of course there’s gonna be problems. It’s a romance :) While there there are familiar elements, Kline does a great job of giving us characters that pop and keep you drawn in to the end. Just because something has been used before doesn’t mean they can’t be enjoyable if the book is done well. And this one definitely is. (Honest review given voluntarily after receiving an ARC of this book)
mamalovestoread22 More than 1 year ago
Everything in Grant McQuaid's life revolves around football, once he was bitten by the football bug as a kid, it hung on tight, and it was the only thing he wanted to do with his life. And now after a injury, he may lose it, and he can't stand the thought of having to walk away from the only thing he has every cared about. Sure he was prepared to retire someday, but it was to be on his terms, and when he was ready to move on, but his injury is forcing him to consider a choice he's not ready to make. Returning home to heal seemed like the perfect idea, and once he is there and meets his biggest fan, and his beautiful mother, he begins to see the appeal of taking his life in a different direction... and begins to realize he has room in his life for more than just football. Bethany Mills doesn't do dating. relationships, or love thanks to the effects of being abandoned by the man who promised to love her for the rest of his life. Having her husband walk away from her and her son was the hardest thing she has ever had to face, so the idea of letting another man walk into her life makes her more than nervous, and has her wanting to put the brakes on it before the first step in her direction is even made. She knows her son needs some male guidance in his life, but the idea of inviting another man into their lives and risk him walking away when things get too tough to cope with, is more than she is willing to risk... that is until she meets Grant McQuaid! From the moment I started this heartfelt story I was completely captivated by Ms. Kline's endearing characters and their beautifully executed story, each word stirred my emotions and had me feeling the intent behind every one of them. From the instant these two stumbled into each other's lives it was evident they belonged together, and needed each other more than either one cared to admit, and I thoroughly enjoyed watching them wage the war on their good sense and desires. Being a parent myself I understood Bethany's reservations about letting someone into her life and the effect it would have on her child, and I think Ms. Kline handled the tough subject matter wonderfully, and gave it a very realistic and tangible feel. I also enjoyed the way she touched on each family member in the McQuaid family, and gave us a taste of what is to come for them in further installments in this series, and I have to say I cannot wait to dive in!! I highly recommend you give this one a try, Grant and Bethany's path to finding their happily ever after is quite enchanting and is certain to leave you with a happy heart!! ARC given by the Avon Publishing, via Tasty Book Tours & Edelweiss, in exchange for a honest and unbiased review.
Lashea677 More than 1 year ago
Routine. We all have one. A plan that helps us stay on track and gets up from point A to point B. But what happens when that becomes redundant. A person can get stuck and when something happens to break the sequence, it easy to become thrown off course. Grant is faced with a similar situation in Making the Play. An injury has left him in limbo and faced with a future beyond the field. Will a single mother with a chip on her shoulder and her adorably little boy show him the true meaning of the word "hero"? T.J. Kline gets to the bottom of what's truly important and gives the reader something to think about while doing so.
Rhondaz More than 1 year ago
Making the Play by T.J. Kline....What an amazing start to a new series. This is such a beautiful heartfelt story, by one of my favorite authors. I know when I pick up one of T.J.'s books I am in for a treat. Love the characters Grant, Bethany and James Bethany's son, they are very well written and likeable. Will Grant and Bethany be able to make a relationship work, due to his professional athlete career? I am so excited for the next book in this series. I was given a complimentary book by publisher for an honest review.
Bette313 More than 1 year ago
A fantastic read and the beginning of a wonderful new series. If this book is any indication of what we can expect in upcoming books, I'm going to need to stock up on tissues. This one is packed with emotion. Grant is dealing with the end of his NFL career, Bethany is dealing with her issues of abandonment and trust, and James (cutest kid ever!) just wants to be accepted. When an impromptu meeting in the park leads first to a friendship and then to love, it's difficult for Bethany to trust that what she and Grant have could be lasting. Will he be there for her and James or will he let her down like so many others have? This was an exceptional sweet and emotional read. I highly recommend it to everyone.