Playing It Close

Playing It Close

by Kat Latham

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Playing It Close by Kat Latham

Book two of the London Legends

Where do you go to escape everything when you're one of the most famous rugby players in the world? For Liam Callaghan, that place is a remote lodge on Venezuela's Caribbean coast. Perfect, except he doesn't exactly want to be alone with his thoughts. Enter Tess Chambers, the ultimate distraction.

Still reeling from a professional disaster that's made her all but unemployable, Tess understands the desire to move through life as somebody else. So when instantly recognizable Liam uses a fake name, she runs with it and creates a temporary new identity of her own.

Their time spent together in paradise is idyllic but brief—after one passionate night, Liam wakes up to find Tess gone. Returning to London, he's shocked to learn she's taken a job with his team's new sponsor. As the Legends' captain, he'll have to not only figure out how to work with the one woman who ever left him wanting more, but also convince her that their feelings in the present mean more than any lies they've told in the past.

90,000 words

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781426898211
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication date: 04/14/2014
Series: London Legends Series , #2
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 183,076
File size: 372 KB

About the Author

Kat Latham is a California girl who moved to Europe the day after graduating from UCLA, ditching her tank tops for raincoats. She taught English in Prague and worked as an editor in London before she and her British husband moved to the Netherlands. Kat’s other career involves writing and editing for charities, and she’s traveled to Kenya, Ethiopia and India to meet heroic people helping their communities survive disasters.Find out more on her website:

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Playing it Close 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book!
cutiephinphin More than 1 year ago
Tess and Liam met by chance in Venezuela and when Liam introduced himself as Liam Jones, she knew that he wanted his privacy and respected that, after all she has her secrets too. They acted on their attraction but ended up connecting deeper than they had ever imagined only to have Tess leaving Liam with a goodbye note. Weeks later, Tess and Liam met again but this time it was under official business. Tess, who was working for her cousin Charlie's company Kajani Adventures, was working on being a sponsor to the London Legends. As work brought them closer, so did their attraction and they agreed to a secret relationship. This is my first book by Kat Latham and also my first Rugby sports romance. I couldn't have been anymore thrilled to be reading this book. While I certainly don't know much about Rugby, I was kept enthralled with all the rugby actions besides the romance. Though Liam and especially Tess kept me frustrated on a few occasions and I wished I was there to give her a shake, I understood that both of them were as emotionally wounded souls as they were sweethearts. Definitely a book to check out especially if you are a fan of sports romance. My only gripe is, in my opinion, the cover model didn't do Liam justice. I was gifted a copy of this book by the author in exchange for a honest review.
ChristineLee More than 1 year ago
A digital copy of this book was provided for an honest review. Although this is Book 2 of Kat Latham's London Legends, it is easily read as a stand-alone. You briefly meet the couple from Book 1, but it doesn't detract from enjoyment or understanding if you haven't yet read their story. This book blew me away. Everything the characters did and experienced felt real; motivations, and actions ran true for me. I felt a full range of emotions reading it, and I think we can all agree, that's what makes a good author great. I cannot wait to read more. Yet another author to add to my watch lists (and yours too).
LoriP123 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed Playing It Close by Kat Latham. It is the second book in the London Legends series and is just as good as the first one. I will definitely be looking forward to reading more. Liam Callaghan needed to escape and get some much needed RR away from the rest of the world so he took a trip to Venezuela. The trip didn't start out the way he had planned. He had been traveling for almost 13 hours and now he found himself trapped in an elevator with a little bit of a woman with pink hair and barely dressed. Tess Chambers couldn't have been any more embarrassed than she found herself when the elevator that she was in with a famous rugby player stopped on the way up to their rooms. Just stopped! She was trapped with him while she was wet, cold and with barely any clothes on. She knew that stepping out of her comfort zone and breaking away from her rigid rules was going to come back and bite her on the a**. The attraction they had for one another was hot and intense, but they both were keeping secrets from one another. Trust and forgiveness takes work and could ultimately cause heartache, but if they were going to move on with their relationship they needed to be honest with one another. I was given an ARC for an honest review. All conclusions are mine and mine alone.
tsmb02 More than 1 year ago
This is the second book in the London Legends series, which pertains to the London Legends rugby team. Tess Chambers decided to go to Venezuela to escape the horror that has become of her life. After having to testify in court against her former employer, she needed a break. Tess is tired of the men in her life making fun of her, even calling her Titless Tess. She decides while she is in Venezuela she is going to take charge of her life and do things that she normally wouldn't do. Coming into her hotel after attempting to skinny dip at midnight, she ends up getting stuck in the lift (elevator) with none other than Liam Callaghan, captain of the London Legends, Tess's favorite team. Liam is there trying to get over the death of his mother. Their time in the elevator was great! They both end up pretending they are other people but they really hit it off. After spending the next day together, they decide to go on a hike to the cloud forest and things get really heated, especially under a waterfall. Let's just say....HOT! After their hike, Tess gets an unexpected call and has been summoned back before the court again and must leave Venezuela and Liam. She sneaks out of his bed early the next day with just a dear John letter. Liam is unhappy because he was thinking he could actually have something special with this girl. Back in London, Tess's cousin Charlie gives her a job. He wants his company to be the next big sponsor for the London Legends and wants Tess to be in charge of it because she is good with numbers and is a huge fan of the Legends. What he doesn't know is about her time with Liam in Venezuela. The first meeting with everyone was a hoot! The calendar shoot....priceless! I loved how these two people, who both had certain issues with things in their lives, found a nice balance with each other. For the first time Tess felt like a man actually liked her and Liam felt that a woman liked him for himself, not for his status. I even liked how when it looked like things were starting to fall apart between the two of them, they both finally realized how special the other was to them. I really loved Tess's family. They seem like a hoot...especially her dad. Overall I really enjoyed this book. Not knowing much about rugby it was fun to learn new things. I would definitely recommend this book. It was great, sexy, fast read. I received this book in exchange for an honest review.
Anne_C More than 1 year ago
Playing It Close was a fluid, well-written sports romance, not a genre I usually pick up. However, this story interested me right from the start with Tess and Liam's meeting in Venezuela. It turned into so much more with the depth of the portrayal of the characters; their back stories, their insecurities, their interactions, their emotions. There was never a dull moment, and I read this from cover-to-cover in one sitting. Tess and Liam go through a lot during this story, but I loved the way they dealt with it...almost. The rugby side, I found interesting and added some things to my limited knowledge of the game. Going through a World Cup experience with them was great. (Gifted a copy for independent review)
DebDiem More than 1 year ago
Playing It Close by Kat Latham is my first read from this author. I enjoyed reading Playing It Close and look forward to reading more from Kat Latham in the future. This well written book has awesome characters, loads of humor and sass, drama and plenty of sexy bits. Playing It Close is book 2 of the London Legends series but can be read as a standalone. This is a complete book, not a cliff-hanger. I received a copy of this book for review purposes.
My_Peace More than 1 year ago
From the beaches of Venezuela to the rugby pitch in London, Kat Latham took me on a romantic adventure in Playing It Close. Smoothly written at a great pace, Playing It Close had all the elements that capture me in a romance...humor, heart ache, just the right amount of conflict, hope, love, great characters, and a great feeling in my heart. Tess and Liam both just wanted to get away...away from 'real life', the spotlight and their troubles when they head to Venezuela separately. Neither expects to find the perfect holiday romance and lose a little piece of their heart. To Tess, it can only be a holiday fling...and when she sneaks off in the night, Liam is not sure he'll ever see her again. Especially since neither of them were honest about who they really were. Rugby, London, and Tess's new job bring them unexpectedly back together again. Tess is determined to keep things professional, even if everything inside of her flares to life around Liam. Liam is determined to have more with Tess. After that brief time with her, he knows he wants more. But lies of omission can take their toll and hurt them both. Will those ruin what's just getting started? Tess and Liam make a fantastic heroine and hero. Tess is so realistic and easy to relate to! It was easy to see her in my mind, to understand her, and feel what she felt. I liked how she carried on, even through hurt and embarrassment, after the mess of her last job. I liked how she was able to lose her inhibitions even if it was just on holiday pretending to be someone else. She did what so many women would do! I really like Liam also! I liked how he was with Tess, how they were together. He is a strong character in more ways than one...and so easy to picture in my minds eye! Tess and Liam are both still hurting, and seeing them come together again, the push and pull of the newly forming relationship was believable. They both still had issues to work through, and I liked how they helped each other do this without even really realizing it. The way they both react when all the truths come out was hard to read because I wanted these two together! Seeing if they could work through it and how kept me intrigued. Tess was very admirable!! I loved all the secondary characters, but the ones who stand out the most for me are Charlie (Tess's cousin) and her Dad. They were hilarious! They kept the entertainment up for me, I just loved them. As funny as they were, they also felt real...and beneath the jokes and unintentional embarrassing comments, they both had a lot of depth to them that shines through. They are both an integral part of Playing It Close and added character and even more depth. Playing It Close is a romance with so much more, it is a very well rounded book. There is definite heat and chemistry between Liam and Tess, but that is just one aspect of the plot. I loved the settings...both in Venezuela and London. Kat paints a vivid picture of both places. I could feel the water on me on the beach...but in London I could hear all the voices and accents. I could smell the pitch, hear the crowds, and see the men!! Kat made me feel like I was part of this world and it was a great time! Playing It Close is book 2 in the London Legends series, but it can easily be read as a stand alone. I'd recommend Playing It Close to any romance reader!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love this this series...and this book totally is in line with what I have come to expect...seems wonderful read....romance at its best!
Maria-Rose More than 1 year ago
I really felt a lot of empathy for Tess in this story. Making the mistake of sleeping with her superior at work who then maligned her publicly, she fought back by creating a blog detailing the harassment women feel in the man's world of the financial district, a step that while getting a lot of approval from other women in the same situation ended up with her on the inquiry stand having to give up the sordid details of an affair she wished she could forget. The loss of her personal and professional reputation was devastating, and the comfort she found in Liam's arms in the remote resort where they met is something she could only dream about happening permanently. Indeed, when they meet up again, Liam is obviously mistrustful of her intentions and it takes a while for the trust to build up again between them. Tess's abandonment issues from childhood have also affected her deeply, making her doubly afraid of making any more mistakes in her life that might cause her adopted family more grief than she's already put them through - an affair with London's beloved rugby captain on the eve of the World Cup is a definite no-no. Liam's reaction to Tess is understandable. He's a handsome, charming man, used to being in the public eye, and equally used to women using him for the status of his position and not really seeing the real man underneath. When he thought that the honesty he and Tess had shared with other on the resort (admittedly not revealing their true identities but sharing meaningful and emotional stories with each other) had been tainted by her revelation that she'd known who he was all the time, he was understandably angry and annoyed (mostly with himself for allowing his feelings to get involved with what was supposed to be just a fun night of sex). As time goes on and he realizes that Tess is a true rugby fan and didn't just sleep with him as a notch on her belt, he grudgingly must admit to himself that he feels more for her than he has for any other woman. It will take more than just desire and attraction between them to move their relationship to the next level. I loved the sexual tension between these two and they share some very sexy scenes together, both on the resort, and later once they admit that the attraction they feel for each other isn't going away. Tess has issues with her body image and self esteem, and Liam is quick to reassure her that in his eyes, she is beautiful (and his are the only ones that should matter). He's a really sweet and loving man underneath his alpha male image, a friendly and supportive person and well deserving of his position as captain on the rugby team. They have a series of ups and downs as the story goes on, but eventually do find their happy ending in a very satisfactory way. The author does a great job of explaining rugby to the newbie, with a glossary of terms at the start of the story and several sporty scenes that are detailed and full of action. From start to finish, this was a truly entertaining story and a treat for readers familiar with rugby or looking for a new type of sports romance. 4.5 stars.
Bette313 More than 1 year ago
Fantastic read! This is the second book in the series and it is just as intriguing as the first. I still know next to nothing about rugby but I do know a little about great romance reads and this is definitely one! Away on holiday, Tess Chambers is trying to relax and get her head straight after her personal and professional life get entangled and implode. Liam Callaghan is reeling from the recent loss of his mother. He wants to get himself together before taking over as the captain of his rugby team. When he spots Tess at the resort, he doesn't want his fame to come in to play so he introduces himself with a fake name. She immediately knows who he is but since he obviously doesn't want to be recognized she goes with it. After one incredibly passionate night, Liam wakes up alone.... Back in London, imagine the surprise when he walks into a meeting with a new sponsor and sees Tess sitting there. The craziness is just getting started though!! As I said this is a fantastic book. It moves along at a great pace and these characters grab your heart right from the beginning. I definitely recommend this one to everyone.
Marcy99 More than 1 year ago
This 2nd book in the 'London Legends' rugby romance series was just as good as the first one! The characters had real issues, the dialog was great and the attraction between Liam and Tess was intense! I'll be reading the next book in this series next and I can't wait!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Judy-Ree More than 1 year ago
This is the second book in the London Legends series by Kat Latham. When I saw this on NetGalley, I knew that I wanted to read it since I so enjoyed the first one, Knowing the Score (4 stars).  It's funny, I'm not usually into sports books, but maybe because I have absolutely no idea how to play Rugby, that it seems quite fascinating. Plus the writing is very good, with sharp and witty dialogue. We are introduced to Tess as she tries to work up the courage to go for a midnight skinny dip in the ocean, while on her vacation in Venezuela.  Tess is on a much needed break from a huge public scandal involving her testimony on the sexual harassment practices on London's version of Wall Street. She can't quite talk herself into it and ends up swimming in her t-shirt and bikini bottoms. Once she is done and heading in the for night, she realizes that since she didn't manage to work up her nerve and she forgot her towel, she now half naked in a translucent white t-shirt. She does her best to get sneak back up to her room unnoticed, when someone joins her in the elevator ride up to her room. Luck continues to be against her when the elevator gets stuck between floors on the way up. Liam Callaghan, Captain of the London Legends, the England squad and all time leading points scorer, is just trying to get some piece, quiet and a little perspective since his mother's death a few weeks ago. He gives an alias to Tess when they meet and since she knows all about wishing to be anonymous right now, she plays along and gives him an alias as well. It doesn't take long before they are spending all their free-time together, exploring the area and each other.  Neither thinks that they will see each other again, until fate puts them face to face as promoter and star athlete. But due to the alias', there is confusion and misunderstanding that will have to be worked through before they can once again trust each other. British books are hits or misses with me. This one was a hit.  I still have absolutely no clue about rugby, and thankfully it wasn't necessary, to enjoy this book. However, I will say that what little bit I have checked out on Youtube seems very interesting. Both of the characters had issues to work through, but I remained interested and involved the whole story through.  I consumed this book in one sitting, it was so engrossing. I did read the first book in the series, but I don't think it would be necessary to follow the story line of this one. Though we did get a bit of a peek at how they are doing in this book.  This is another 4 star read. 
jojoNE More than 1 year ago
As a fan of sports-themed romances I was immediately drawn to this story and its likable characters, witty dialogue, heartfelt romance, and engaging circumstances. From their unconventional first meeting you can expect the unexpected as Tess and Liam take a twisty and turny journey to HEA. Star rugby player Liam is still struggling with the loss of his mother, which has him off his game and frustrated with the superficiality of his relationships and desperate to find something more while taking a break in Venezuela. For weeks Tess has been fodder in the press for her whistle blowing in a work-related sex scandal. Tired of being the butt of jokes and for again disappointing her family she takes a break at her family's Eco-friendly spa in Venezuela where she's torn between her instincts to be a wild child and not wanting to give people more to criticize her for. A slightly poor decision leaves her wet and semi-naked in an elevator that breaks down after star rugby player Liam rushes in. From this engaging opening scene full of playfulness and sexual tension you sense a deep connection between these two people who feel lost and alone. Though neither of them gave their real names, their connection and emotions were as honestly displayed as ever before. Their short time together brought out the best in both of them but it wasn't meant to last as the real world was awaiting them. Arriving back in London didn't stop their problems as she starts a new job that will greatly impact his future as his team is on the verge of bankruptcy. Though their attraction is just as intense as before their new working relationship forbids anything sexual. Working so closely amps up their attraction and soon their relationship becomes combustible as they both fight for the happiness they glimpsed millions of miles away. I enjoyed their romantic journey as their both immensely likable. Tess is a woman tired of disappointing her family and tries to walk the straight and narrow as she just wants to be accepted. She's willing to throw away what she has with Liam out of fear and it left their HEA in jeopardy. I still liked her though as she's outspoken and quirky in her actions. She has self-esteem and body image issues that every woman can relate to and left me sympathetic to her and rooting for her HEA. Liam is a kindhearted man who just wants to be loved for who he is. He too is desperate not to disappoint others, as he feels he did to his mother on her deathbed, which leaves him struggling to do the right thing. He's willing to admit when he's wrong though which endeared him to me even more. Needless to say he's super sexy too, as are the other colorful characters of the London Legends rugby team. These intriguing men mean there's plenty more stories for Ms. Latham to tell and as the scenes featuring the team were engaging there's plenty of sexy stories left to tell.. Ms. Latham's story flowed nicely with the romance building in increments that allowed their playfulness and sensuality to come shining through and I look forward to the next installment as well as going back to read the previous book in this series.
Sailon More than 1 year ago
Knowing the Score is a fantastic story about two wounded but very public people facing difficult times and finding love.  Liam Callaghan, rugby champion, is reeling from the loss of his mother. Tess Baily is facing a political fire storm over her sexual harassment charges against her ex-work place. Both find solace in each others arms in a eco-lodge resort in Venezuela. Both giving each other false identities...but when they return to real life and their jobs...they discover Tess might be the ultimate decision in financially saving Liam's rugby team. Even if their burning passion follows them from the jungles of Venezuela, their working affiliation makes their chance at further relationships forbidden. For some reason, the entire time I was reading Playing It Close I had a picture of Stu stuck in my head...what a visual. I loved Latham's writing style. I was immediately pulled right into the complicated lives of these two characters. A tumultuous relationship, heart felt internal inventory, and two characters that might be famous/infamous but where completely relatable, how could I not be catapulted into their lives. Tess's father's introspective into Tess's character actually had me in tears, showing the true love a of family.  I didn't have the pleasure to read Knowing the Score first and would love the opportunity to get more on Spencer's and Caitlyn's story. That being said, Playing it Close completely stood on its own. Don't miss this fantastic, sports infused, love story. 
csingh More than 1 year ago
Going into this book all I expected was a hot promiscuous rugby player and lots of sex. Instead I was left reeling when I finished the book. This book took my expectations and blew them out of the water. I got all I wanted and so much more. Of course, had I read Kat Latham's debut book and the first book in the London Legends series, Knowing the Score, I probably wouldn't have been so surprised by how good it was. If you're like me and haven't read the first book, allow me to reassure you, this book is can easily be read as a stand alone. I loved how both Tess and Liam were trying to escape their demons in England and yet met each other unexpectedly on the other side of the world and found themselves slightly unburdening themselves on each other all while keeping their given names from each other. I loved how they laid themselves and each other bare, both figuratively and literally. I love that while I got the hot sex I was expecting, it was exactly what Tess and Liam needed, and not over the top or too little. I love that Tess was a strong woman who didn't hesitate to face and admit her mistakes and short comings, yet she could've been you or me, especially when it came to the insecurities she felt regarding her body. Kat wrote characters I wanted to both be friends with and protect from the ugliness of life. It was very easy to forget Liam and Tess were fictional characters This book is fast paced, I feel as if I read it in no time and yet it was so profound. There are a multitude of issues in this book that are dealt with a depth most wouldn't expect from a romance novel, let alone a sports romance. I love how seamlessly Kat Latham integrated them into the story. Nothing felt forced and everything was dealt with in a manner that was true but fair. I'm hoping Kat will write a story about Charlie, Tess's cousin especially since he plays a pivotal part in bringing Tess and Liam together again when they return to England. Oh and the index pertaining to rugby terms is a brilliant move. It kept me, someone who knows nothing at all about the sport of rugby, from being confused. I think it's safe to say I'm excited to have discovered another author to add to "my must read" and "want in paperback" lists as well as a new sport to read about.