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Playing the Player
     

Playing the Player

4.4 17
by Amy Andrews
 

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After a long history with crappy guys, high school teacher Em Newman is going man-vegan. Four months of revirginization has opened her eyes to her doormat imitation but, baby’s got spine now, and some smooth-talking—even if he is sinfully hot—rugby player, won’t be adding her as a notch anytime soon.

Lincoln Quinn loves rugby, women,

Overview

After a long history with crappy guys, high school teacher Em Newman is going man-vegan. Four months of revirginization has opened her eyes to her doormat imitation but, baby’s got spine now, and some smooth-talking—even if he is sinfully hot—rugby player, won’t be adding her as a notch anytime soon.

Lincoln Quinn loves rugby, women, and poker. And he likes to win at all three. When his team mates bet him he can’t break through Em’s resolve, he’s more than up for the challenge. But this lady has a shoebox of stipulations before she’ll even go on a date with him, much less use that mouth for kissing instead of giving orders.

Something’s gotta give but this time Em’s not settling. And Linc’s questioning everything he ever knew about matters of the heart.

Each book in the Sydney Smoke Rugby series is a standalone, full-length story that can be enjoyed out of order.
Series Order:
Book #1 Playing By Her Rules
Book #2 Playing it Cool
Book #3 Playing the Player

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781633757912
Publisher:
Entangled Publishing, LLC
Publication date:
01/30/2017
Series:
Sydney Smoke Rugby Series , #3
Sold by:
Macmillan
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
247
Sales rank:
18,648
File size:
2 MB

Related Subjects

Read an Excerpt

Playing the Player

A Sydney Smoke Rugby Novel


By Amy Andrews, Liz Pelletier

Entangled Publishing, LLC

Copyright © 2016 Amy Andrews
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-63375-791-2


CHAPTER 1

Lincoln Quinn stared at the three aces and two queens he was holding in his hand. Fuck, he loved poker.

It fell a close third to rugby and women.

The fact that he was astoundingly good at all three was worn as a badge of honour. Practise did, after all, make perfect.

His brow crinkled in a fake display of holy-shit-this-hand-is-crap. It still worked occasionally. "You know what this poker game needs?" he mused out loud to his fellow players, keen to distract the other guys as they assessed their cards. Anyone would think they were playing for bloody sheep stations instead of fake casino chips.

"Chicks," came five simultaneous replies.

Linc laughed. His teammates from the Sydney Smoke were well used to his regular refrain. Tanner Stone, the captain, had declared the game a chick-free zone a few years back, when they'd all started playing, and Linc had been bitching about it ever since.

According to Ryder Davis, country down to his bootstraps, a couple of blokes called Brooks and Dunn had sung some song about how much better life was with a girl in it, and Linc couldn't agree more. He sure as hell hoped they'd won some kind of an award for such genius.

"You know you're all thinking the same thing," Linc goaded good-naturedly.

"I'm thinking I fold," Tanner said, throwing his cards onto the table.

Ryder, pulling his Akubra low on his forehead with one hand, tossed his cards on top of the others. "Me, too."

"Me, three," Dexter Blake said, grimacing at his hand before slapping it down.

Donovan Bane, half Maori man-mountain who couldn't play poker for shit, followed suit. "Me, four."

Bodie Webb stared Linc down over the top of his cards, taking his time. "I'm thinking ..." he murmured eventually. "You're bluffin'."

"Oh yeah?" Linc cocked an eyebrow, staring right back.

To be fair, he couldn't blame Bodie for being skeptical. He often bluffed on these poker nights — it was half the fun. Because one thing Linc understood well was the theatre of things. Of card games. And rugby. And women.

And he loved to play.

"Why don't you put your money where your mouth is?" he challenged.

"Don't do it, Spidey," Dex warned. "He may look dumb, but Linc Quinn is a fucking shark and you know it."

Linc shrugged, unconcerned by Dex's insult. He wasn't a book smart kinda guy. A broken home, an itinerate childhood, and a mild case of dyslexia hadn't been conducive to learning. If it hadn't been for rugby, he'd probably be digging ditches somewhere.

But the school of hard knocks had taught him about life. And poker.

"I bet a hundred," Bodie said, flipping a chip into the centre of the table.

Linc didn't bother to look at his cards, keeping his gaze trained on Bodie. "I'll match it and raise you five."

He threw a five-hundred-dollar chip after his one-hundred-dollar one. They clinked into the silence around the table.

Bodie tossed in a five and added another five to the pile. "Raise ya."

Ryder whistled long and low then took a suck of his beer. Tanner shook his head and said, "I hope you're wearing your spandex Spiderman suit under those clothes."

"I bet he's crapping it if he is," Donovan added.

Dex laughed, and Linc suppressed a grin as he matched and raised with two five-hundred-dollar chips. Bodie fidgeted in his chair. Cleared his throat.

No superhero was going to get him out of this fix.

Linc waited patiently as Bodie fidgeted some more, stroking his fingers back and forth over the glossy surface of the cards, shaking his head as he glared at them then at Linc then back at the cards.

Ryder drummed his fingers on the table.

"Must you do that?" Bodie snapped.

"Well, are you playing or are you trying to rub the titties off the queen?" Ryder griped.

The wait didn't bother Linc. He could wait all night. Patience was a big part of strategy. It was an even bigger part of bluffing.

Not that he needed to bluff with this hand.

"Goddamn it," Bodie bitched as he glared at Linc. "You know what your problem is? You just can't resist a bet, can you?"

Linc did grin this time. "I have no idea what you're talking about."

There were general snorts of disbelief around the table. Tanner laughed outright. "You bet on who was going to be the first to leave One Direction!"

"And your phone has four different betting apps," Donovan pointed out.

"You bet on Harper," Dex griped, "over me when we played Battlefront last Wednesday night."

"Dude, she kicked your ass," Linc said. "She always kicks your ass."

"What about that time you bet on that old flea-bitten nag who hadn't won a race for two years?" Ryder demanded.

Linc shrugged. "It won that race, didn't it?" And earned him a cool eight hundred bucks. Not bad for an afternoon's work.

Bodie threw a thousand on the pile. "All right then, you prick, I'll see you. What have you got?"

Linc lay his hand down. "Full house. Aces and ladies."

Bodie stared at it in disbelief, throwing his hand down in disgust as the table erupted in cheers and wolf whistles.

"Man." Bodie shook his head as he sucked on his beer, and Linc grabbed the chips from the centre of the table. "You ever get injured playing rugby, you should head to Vegas. You could make a shitload with that great, big, hairy pair you've got."

Linc just grinned, taking a much-deserved pull of his own beer. The cold, bitter flavour went down a treat. "Your deal, dude."

The next hand was shuffled and dealt.

"Jesus, Spidey." Donovan shook his head at his cards. "Just as well you can play rugby. You can't deal for shit."

Bodie, his cards clearly better this time if his returning humour was any indication, smiled. "I could have dealt you a royal flush and you'd fuck it up somehow."

"Man's got a point, Dono," Ryder agreed.

Donovan shrugged good-naturedly. "Only game that counts is on the pitch."

"Amen," Tanner murmured.

Midway through the season the Smoke were in the top eight, which would put them through to the semis if they managed to maintain it. If they moved higher up the leaderboard, they'd have a commanding foothold. They'd played the previous three grand finals in a row and won two of them.

Linc spared his hand a cursory glance. A pair of jacks and a pair of nines. Oh yeah, baby, come to dada. "So." He cocked an eyebrow at Dex, who usually gave him a good run for his money on poker night but right now was in a race with Donovan to the bottom.

It didn't take any kind of book smarts to know why. "You nervous about Sunday?"

Dex shook his head emphatically. "Nope."

"You don't think you kind of rushed into it?"

"Nope."

"You've known her for four months, dude."

"Yep." Dex grinned, big and wolfish. Like he'd won the night, the premiership, and the famed John Davis rugby medal all at once.

Linc was happy for Dex and Harper, but he personally didn't get why any guy with the celebrity status afforded to sports stars would settle with one woman when there was so much lovin' to spread around.

"You didn't want to wait 'til the end of the season to get hitched like Tanner and Matilda?" As long as Linc lived, he'd never understand that whole urge to tie yourself down to one woman, but Matilda's insistence on a Christmas wedding at least seemed considered. "Have one of those big celebrity do's?"

"Harper didn't want to wait." Dex shrugged, his grin taking up half his face. "What can I say? She wants me."

She must. They would be playing their toughest game of the season the night before, and there was no plan for a honeymoon, either, with Griffin King, their hard-as-nails coach, owning their asses for the season. Hell, there'd hardly be time for a wedding night, with training bright and early Monday morning.

Harper was going to be a rugby widow for the next couple of months, especially if they made it through to the finals.

"What happens if that pretty face gets all mashed up during the game Saturday night and you look like Frankenstein for the pictures?" Ryder asked, his face hidden by the brim of his hat as he considered his cards.

"Or you break your leg," Bodie added helpfully.

"Or worse," Linc chimed in, huge smile on his face, "you strain your groin. You're probably going to need that thing to perform your husbandly duties on Sunday night."

Dex chuckled. "I'm touched that you're worried about my duties, but there ain't nothing that can keep this groin down."

There was much hilarity as the guys all drummed on the table.

"Just sayin' ..." Linc shrugged as the hubbub settled. "I'd be more than happy to step in if you're not up to the job."

Dex snorted. "Over my cold, dead body."

They all laughed again, but Linc shook his head as he raised his beer bottle for a toast. "To Dexter Blake. Another good man bites the dust."

"He's getting married, Linc," Tanner said amidst the laughter and bottle clinking. "Not facing a firing squad."

Linc shuddered. He might as well be. "Yeah, but why settle for one when there's so many gorgeous chicks out there?"

"The man makes a very good point," Ryder agreed.

"Especially," Linc continued, "when all they want is a little bit of time with a hot rugby dude."

"Perfect for a complete man whore such as yourself," Dex said derisively.

Linc blasted away the slight hint of sarcasm with a deliberately goofy grin. "I know, right?"

"That was an insult, dufus," Donovan said, shaking his head.

Linc grinned, unperturbed by the besmirching of his character. "I take man whore as a compliment."

Who knew how long he'd play rugby at an elite level? He could injure himself and it could be all over tomorrow. He was going to take advantage of whatever came his way as a result whenever it came his way.

Including any women who were willing to get to know him carnally.

Dex glanced at Tanner. "Are you going to tell him or am I?"

Tanner grinned then turned his attention to Linc. "Listen to me carefully, grasshopper. Finding the one? Being with the one? Best thing ever. You should try it."

Linc blinked at the conviction in his skipper's voice and at the goofy looks on both Dex's and Tanner's faces. As a rule, none of the guys got mushy about shit — unless it had to do with rugby. They talked about sex. Not love. About chicks and clubs and booty calls. Not the one.

Linc hadn't had a role model worth a damn. His mother had walked out on them when he was he a kid, and his long-haul father had a string of broken marriages and a woman in every truck stop.

He'd learned early that sex was about feeling good. A happiness transaction. And rugby had given him the means to feel very happy, very often.

He'd be crazy to give that up.

"No thanks." He shuddered at the thought. "Too many women, not enough time. Now"— he picked up his cards —"are we playing poker, or do you two want to sit and make daisy chains?"

"God." Dex shook his head sympathetically, turning his attention back to his cards as well. "Em is right. You're going to catch some antibiotic-resistant cock pox and die a slow and horrible death."

The guys cracked up as Linc frowned. Em Newman. Harper's bestie. Cute, with bouncy butterscotch curls and legs that wore the hell out of a pair of jeans. Linc had always been a leg man. Thankfully, hers made up for her caustic tongue and armour-plated panties.

"Firstly, I can assure you I go to great lengths to ensure that my cock is pox-free." Multiple groans of "too much information" slid off his shoulders. "Secondly ... I'm flattered that Harper's cute" — man-hating, total pain-in-the-ass — "friend is talking about my junk."

Any woman talking about his junk was cause for celebration. Maybe she wasn't as immune to him as she'd made out?

"I wouldn't be," Dex dismissed. "I've heard the way those two talk when they get together. I don't think anyone's junk is off limits."

A couple of the guys clearly paled at the idea. Not Linc. Those no-holds-barred girly conversations women indulged in didn't faze him, particularly if he was at the centre of it.

In fact, the thought of anything to do with Little Ms. Cute-and-Curly didn't faze him at all. Sure, he'd crashed and burned with her a few times, but Linc was eternally optimistic when it came to women.

"So was she just speculating about its state of poxiness, or was she making more general enquiries about its" — he grinned "— size and legendary prowess?"

Dex cocked an eyebrow. "Not surprisingly, I didn't really ask her interest in your cock. Although" — he lifted a shoulder, amusement colouring his voice — "I could if you'd like me to? Maybe you could write her a note and I can pass it to her? Being a teacher and all, she might appreciate that."

"Ooh, I like that idea." Bodie grinned. "How about this, Linc? 'Would you like to see Lincoln Quinn's legendary cock?' Then you could draw two little boxes underneath the question. One for yes. One for no."

"You could even put little hearts instead of dots over the i's," Donovan suggested.

"And a glitter pen," Ryder added, getting in on the smack talk. "Girls love that kind of shit."

Linc flipped the bird in their general direction. "Bite me."

"It's okay." Dex clapped Linc on the shoulder. "You can ask her in person. On Sunday. At the wedding."

Linc snorted derisively. He was all for being brash, but he was pretty damn sure Harper's friend would cut him off at the knees if he opened with that particular line.

Some women liked dirty right from the get-go. He didn't need a high school certificate to tell him she was not one of them.

According to Dex, she'd been dumped by some jerk-off a while back and, from what Linc could see, she was determined to make all men suffer. She might be cute and have legs that had featured heavily in his dreams, but life was too short for women that required convincing.

Even if he was a leg man.

"You're right," Dex commiserated. "You're not exactly her favourite person. I don't know what the hell you did, but she really doesn't like you."

"I didn't do anything," Linc protested. He'd flirted with her, sure, but that was just his natural state of being around a woman he found attractive.

Most women appreciated it.

"She's just annoyed because she's sworn off men, but deep down, she really, really wants to jump me. Abstinence ..." Linc shook his head, giving the word the amount of contempt it deserved. "It's just not good for a person, I tell ya."

"I don't believe it." Bodie shook his head and clutched his chest in faux horror. "A woman who doesn't want Lincoln Quinn. Not possible."

Linc hadn't believed it, either. The night they'd first met, Em had been Harper's plus-one at a charity function. He'd asked her to dance. She'd told him she'd rather drink poison.

Man, he'd been so damn hot for her that night.

Linc shrugged nonchalantly. One day she'd be ready to break her self-imposed celibacy, and he'd be there. "Oh, she wants me, all right."

And that wasn't false bravado. He'd seen her probably half a dozen times in the last few months and every time their eyes met, he'd felt this weird electric charge between them.

She'd felt it, too.

He could tell by the slight widening of her eyes and the sudden frizz of static in her mop of tight curls.

Bodie narrowed his eyes. "Is that so?" Speculation gleamed in his clear gaze, and Linc got an itch up his spine. "Fancy a little wager?"

Linc was just about to open his mouth to reject any suggestion of betting on him scoring with Harper's bestie when Ryder, who'd been rocking on his chair, thunked it down on all fours. He pulled his wallet out of his back pocket, tipped back his hat, and said, "I'm in."

"Me, too," Tanner said, sitting up straighter.

Donovan nodded. "And me."

"What's the bet?" Dex asked.

"Hold up, guys." It was good for Linc's ego that none of them doubted he could do it, but it didn't feel right to be betting on something like this.

"How soon Linc can convince abstinent-chick to do the wild thing," Bodie said, ignoring Linc.

"I've seen Linc talk a Sunday school teacher into his bed in under two hours," Ryder said, slapping a crisp green hundred-dollar note on the table. "I say he'll get the job done the night of the wedding."


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Playing the Player by Amy Andrews, Liz Pelletier. Copyright © 2016 Amy Andrews. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Amy Andrews is an award-winning author who has written twenty-eight romances. She has sold over a million books and has been translated into a dozen different languages. She wrote her first book at the age of twenty-two while unemployed and freezing her butt off in the UK, largely because it involved being able to stay in bed with her electric blanket. One twelve year apprenticeship later she finally got "the call". In 2010 she took out the sexy category in the prestigious Australian Romantic Book of the Year Award affectionately known as the R*BY.

In what she euphemistically likes to call her spare time, she works part time as a pediatric intensive care nurse and was on the national executive for Romance Writers Of Australia for six years during which time she organised two national conferences and undertook a two year term as president.

She's been married for twenty-two years and has two teenagers who only admit to her being a writer when they have to explain to their friends why there's no food in the house. She lives on acreage on the outskirts of Brisbane with a gorgeous mountain view.

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Playing the Player 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
BuckeyeAngel 5 months ago
Linc is on the Sydney Smoke Rugby team. Linc thinks he has the perfect life: rugby, money, and woman. Linc doesn’t believe in love and marriage.Em is a H S science teacher. Em is sick of casual sex and relationships not getting serious. She decides not to have anything to do with sex until she finds a good man. But then Em is very attracted to a guy that she is sure is not good nor likely to have a serious relationship. Linc asks Em out several times but she keeps saying no. She does want Linc but she feels she needs to stay to looking for the good gut. Linc and em seem to have a lot in common and their upbringings were a lot alike. They had both faced abandonment when they were young. I liked this story a lot. At times I chuckled . Also there was no huge drama I felt this was well written. I did feel the ending was rushed. But there was a lot of twists and turns and I loved that. I also loved the fact that there was a glossary showing the meaning of the “ Aussie” words. I was happy to see Em and Lic together. I also liked the way Linc and his team interacted. I also liked that Em didn’t hold the bet against Linc I loved how Linc tried to Guess what Em’s full first name was. So all and all I really enjoyed this story. I liked the characters and the ins and outs of this story and I recommend.
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
I loved Em and Linc's story--there's nothing more satisfying than a player finally falling for the one, amirite? Okay, yes, Linc was a total man you-know-what throughout books one and two of the series ( Playing by Her Rules and Playing It Cool ) and speaks of it proudly in the opening scenes of this one. And yeah, the impetus for Em and Linc getting together here is (kind of) an ill-advised bet. However, he's pretty much a one-woman-man from the first page through to the last--before they get together and while they're mired in their darkest relationship moment, he doesn't even think about other women. And even though Linc takes the poker night bet, it's never really a part of why he pursues Em; when it eventually comes to light she knows better than to be worried about it (which made me really happy--I was pretty worried that we'd spend an inordinate amount of time on this nonissue.) I should have known better than to worry, though--this is an Amy Andrews book! Instead of the same-old-same-old pretty much pointless drama, we have a developing relationship between two adults that both made me laugh out loud on one page and reach for a fan to cool down on the next. And then the grand gesture at the end? OMG, le sigh. Absolutely perfect. I still know next to nothing about rugby--how many people are on a team, again? (and yeah, I only want to know to get a ballpark figure of how many books to expect in the series ;))--but I sure do enjoy reading about the fictional guys who play it. Add in a wealth of Aussie-isms (many of which are conveniently defined in the back of the book--some of the used in a sentence bits made me snort-laugh a little) and I am 100% sold. How long do I need to wait for #4? Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A- I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
grandmareads102 More than 1 year ago
Lincoln Quinn is a well known rugby player for the Sydney Smoke. He loves the game as well as hanging out with his teammates. He doesn't plan to tie himself down. No wife and family for him. He plans to play the field. He's attracted to Em, but she constantly rebuffs him. She doesn't want a fling. She wants it all - love, marriage and a family. To win a bet, Linc pursues her, but the jokes on him when he falls for her. What happens next is a passionate romance between the Rugby super star and the intelligent school teacher. I liked that they have an immediate connection. When they're together the temperature sores. The chemistry is amazing. Unfortunately they each have past issues that may keep them apart. I liked both Em and Linc. They are perfect for each other. I just wasn't sure how their romance would end. It was enjoyable to see the other Sydney Smoke players. They are a rowdy but loveable group. Amy Andrews knows romance and rugby. I loved reading Linc and Em's story. I enjoyed seeing another Smoke player bite the dust! A copy of this book was provided to me. I voluntarily read this book and my comments here are my honest opinion.
Nicolerko More than 1 year ago
4.5 Stars Another great book in this series! Linc the playboy of this group of rugby players is about to meet his match. Em has sworn off men, but it's getting harder and harder to resist Linc. I was sucked right into this book. The characters are great with the right combination of humor and personality. Things get quite steamy between Linc and Em. They have a lot of chemistry. I hope there is more to come from this series.
IreneC More than 1 year ago
4 stars Playing the Player was a fun, sweet and steamy read, I really enjoyed it. I enjoyed the storyline, I enjoyed the characters, both Linc and Em were entertaining, funny, smart and passionate people who together made a great couple. I loved watching their relationship develop, what started as a bet for Linc soon became so much more. He never expected to have such strong feelings for Em. Overall, Playing the Player by Amy Andrews is a well written, highly entertaining and steamy read. A wonderful addition to the Sydney Smoke Rugby series and I highly recommend it!
Janeen More than 1 year ago
After a long history with crappy guys, high school teacher Em Newman is going man-vegan. Four months of revirginization has opened her eyes to her doormat imitation but, baby’s got spine now, and some smooth-talking—even if he is sinfully hot—rugby player, won’t be adding her as a notch anytime soon. Lincoln Quinn loves rugby, women, and poker. And he likes to win at all three. When his team mates bet him he can’t break through Em’s resolve, he’s more than up for the challenge. But this lady has a shoebox of stipulations before she’ll even go on a date with him, much less use that mouth for kissing instead of giving orders. Something’s gotta give but this time Em’s not settling. And Linc’s questioning everything he ever knew about matters of the heart. This was okay but again not something I would go right out and buy. I hate it when the hero isn't all that heroish lol. He just didn't do it for me. The heroine was kind of wishy washy and not definitive as a character. I just wanted to get through with the book because Linc didn't want to get married and his "bet" was to sleep with Em. Now, I'm pretty sure that puts him in the douche category. If you're going to bet that you can get a woman into bed in so many days and put a hundred dollars into the pot to bet for your ownself - you're a douche!! That's not a story I'd want to tell the kids or maybe some out there would. Maybe that is your story and if so then...that's great! However, the writing was really good and it was really fast-paced. There was a lot of sexual content and language. I was given a copy of this ARC from the publisher on Netgalley for a honest review. All of the above comments are my express opinions and no one else's.
Maria-Rose More than 1 year ago
I've become pretty partial to rugby romances lately, and Amy Andrews is high on my list of go-to authors when it comes to mixing sports and steam in fun and exciting romances. I really enjoyed the first two stories in the Sydney Smoke Rugby series, in which secondary character Lincoln Quinn is clearly a man set on experiencing all the action he can get while advancing his rugby career. In Playing the Player, there's one woman who just doesn't seem to be into him at all, something he can't quite wrap his head around. Em Newman, a high school teacher and friend of one of his teammate's girlfriends has rebuffed him at every turn. Never able to resist a bet, he's easily goaded into putting down money that he'll be able to convince Em to loosen up and do the wild thing with him within two months. But this player is about to learn that in the game of love, the only winners are the ones who make it to the goal line together. I love a hero in pursuit theme, and that's what we get here with Linc going after Em with a single minded determination. At first, it's because of the bet, but it's not long before he has put thoughts of that aside in the realization that he really likes Em and wants to spend time with her – in and out of bed. He's also a good guy hero with a kind heart, and while he may have a bit of an ego, Em is pretty capable of taking him down a peg or two. His flirt texting and phone calls had me laughing out loud and combining that with his attention to being the best damn lover Em has ever had puts him clearly at the top of my book boyfriend shelf. Em is serious about her next boyfriend being 'the one'. She wants marriage, kids, the whole nine yards. She knows that Linc isn't looking for anything serious and tries hard to resist temptation. But when he agrees to run a rugby clinic at her school in exchange for a date, she realizes that letting loose and having a little fun wouldn't be such a bad thing. The result is some explosive scenes, hot and steamy sex (shower scenes included!), and two people who quickly can't keep their hands off each other. But just because they've finally done the deed, it doesn't change how they feel about marriage (a definite no go for Linc and a yes, please for Em). Even when they get to the point of revealing their feelings for each other, if there is no compromise their relationship won't last long. You'll have to read it for yourself to see how they sort things out, but rest assured, they get their happy ending. I loved the scenes on the pitch, the bromance between Linc and his teammates, and the banter between Linc and Em. I'm officially naming this one my hottest read of January 2017 and I'll be keeping my eyes out for more sexy, steamy fun from Amy Andrews!
PennySparkles More than 1 year ago
4 “There are curtains in my heart now” Stars I met Em and Linc in Playing It Cool and was more than intrigued by Linc. I wondered if he would ever score with Em after witnessing the epic crash and burn in that book. Em has some daddy issues that led to her latching on to any man who would give her a little attention, who then would always end up leaving her. She finally realizes her problem and decides to take a break from men and relationships. She’ll only lift the man-ban for the right kind of guy… the forever kind. Linc, a manslut extraordinaire, is definitely not a forever kind of guy. Having never been shut down so hard and so many times, he considered Em a challenge. Men will be men and a bet is made as to when Linc will finally score with the elusive Em and he sets off more determined than ever to charm her. At the same time, Em’s unwavering resolution against players like Linc will make it that much harder. When a man completely against commitment decides to chase a woman completely against casualness… well, you get one hell of a ride. Linc and Em spending time together will turn into something neither had ever expected, but unless they work through their issues and differences nothing much can come out of their explosive attraction. Like the previous book in the series, I found Playing the Player charming, hot and sexy, with hilarious banter and a great cast of characters. I really liked how the author took on the whole bet thing, and how we got to witness both Linc and Em’s growth through the story. Linc was a super hunky rugby player, cocky, charming and definitely bossy. Em was snarky, sweet and funny. I liked them both as much together as I did as individuals. I’m on the lookout for the next Smoke hottie to fall… the only thing I ask is that I get an epilogue at some point. Pretty please? “What happened to brotherhood?” “Dude” Bodie glanced at the contraband in Linc’s hands. “Leopard print panties.” *I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book*
KendalH More than 1 year ago
Linc finally meet his match! I love this series, but this book was by far my favorite. Two words: Locker Room. I'm really hoping this series continues. I want Valerie to get her happily ever after.
astroyic More than 1 year ago
OMG! Loved it! Thought this was going to set my iPad on fire! These two have some sizzling heat. Such an excellent story. Loved learning the history between Lincoln Quinn and Em Newman. Excellent development with a fantastic build. The story moves fast, entertaining with a romance too hot to handle. So much tension between the two, I loved watching the spar and the subtle changes as they open up and things progress. Laughter, tears and OMG the sexual chemistry was scorching. Amy Andrews I Love You and Your Entertaining & Sexy Stories. Highly Recommended! Don’t miss this one! 
I voluntarily requested a copy through NetGalley in exchange for a honest review.
Laura_F More than 1 year ago
I have been waiting for Lincoln's story since he was introduced in Playing By Her Rules. Every time he was present I was chuckling at his statements and constant need for the ladies to be around. Linc has had his eye on Em since he met her. Em wants absolutely nothing to do with him since he is 100% her type; the guy who is only in it for a good time and doesn't stick around. Em is a hopeless romantic and Linc is definitely not. He typically doesn't date but he makes an exception for Em since there is something that draws him to her. I love Linc. He's funny and even though he has a history of getting around, he meets all of Em's stipulations for their relationship. Em is smart woman, who walked back her initial resistance to Linc to just go with the flow and see what happens. The frustrating thing about this book is that this group doesn't seem to learn from their past mistakes. I hope this group gets it together in the next book. *This is my voluntary review of an Advanced Reader Copy*
bouncyberthaCR More than 1 year ago
4.5 - "You have a lot of balls" Stars! Amy Andrews, returns to the Sydney Smoke Rugby series with book three, and the affable Lincoln Quinn’s story. If you have read the previous two books, you will know that Linc is known as being somewhat the ladies’ man, a label he wears with quite a bit of pride, and I must admit I do have a particular soft spot for the reformed bad-boy trope. "There aint’ nothing that can keep this groin down." For the most part Amy delivered up a story that worked in that regard. The opening chapter left me with a little concern as to how the story would play out with Em because a relationship built on a bet is one that starts on a slippery slope in my opinion. "I believe in rugby and money and sex. There’s honesty in those things. They’re not things that involve feelings and airy fairy promises. They’re things you can control, and they don’t pretend to be something they’re not." But as the book progresses, you quickly start to see that, that part of the story has very little relevance to the relationship that grows between Linc and Em, and is used more as a catalyst to jump-start their story. And when it is bought to the fore, the author turned it on its head rather than turn it into unnecessary drama, which I really liked too. "Guys like you don’t stay." As they get to know each other on a deeper level (as well as having plenty of dirty-hawt sexy-times), you also see that there are a lot of similarities between them and their upbringings that they keep away from the public eye with their larger than life personalities. It doesn’t take long for them both too see past the façade the other projects to the true person they are with though, and I really enjoyed that aspect of the story as well. He’d opened up to her, shown her his hurts and his scars, and the beliefs that sprung from them. After the inevitable clash of wills, everything was wrapped up pretty quickly in this one, no huge drama’s played out and nothing was overdone, which for me is a massive plus, so much so that at this point in the series, this is my favourite book from it (so far), and I cannot wait to see which Sydney Smoke player is next to meet his romantic match! ** This is a voluntary review of an advanced copy of the book..
BananaTricky More than 1 year ago
Three stars? Three and a half stars? can't decide. Harper's best friend Em is a teacher. After a spate of bad news boyfriends where she was picking out wedding china while they were legging it out the door she has sworn off men. Four months of abstinence have helped her get a perspective although the delicious Lincoln Quinn, her best friend's fiancee Dex's team mate sorely tests her resolve. Lincoln loves women, rugby and gambling - not necessarily in that order. He fancies Harper's bubbly best friend Em but she won't give him the time of day, thinks he's too much of a player. When his team mates lay bets on how quickly he could get the frosty Em into bed at a poker game he isn't interested, but then his competitive interests come to the fore. This started off really well for me. Em was feisty and fighting against her natural instincts, while Linc was learning how to actually get to know a woman and think about what she wanted - outside the bedroom. But then just over half way through I started to feel like this was more of a erotic novella than a novel. Not a lot seemed to happen (except sex in unexpected places), there was no angst, no development, and every chapter seemed to start "one month later ...". I didn't even see any conflict until 87% into the book! Although I am not a rugby fan, nor do I understand any of the jargon, this didn't even have much rugby in it - more of the WAGs watching from the stands. So overall, this series has been a mixed bag for me. I detested the first book [book:Playing by Her Rules|30639529], mainly because I thought the hero was a tool; I adored the second book [book:Playing It Cool|31559311], perhaps because the hero was SUCH a great guy but this one I was a bit meh. Maybe this book suffered in comparison to Rosalind James' Escape to New Zealand series (about New Zealand All Blacks rugby players finding love) which I have binge-read over the past few weeks. Anyway, Amy Andrews is still an auto-buy for me (or auto-request), but this was just pleasant enough. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
DebraMenard155 More than 1 year ago
I voluntarily reviewed this book from Netgalley in exchange for a honest review.I really enjoyed reading this book, good storyline and likeable characters,I will definitely recommend this book to my friends.
Splashesintobooks1 More than 1 year ago
I’d enjoyed other stories in this series but was wary of this one as the main male character is Lincoln Quinn (aka Linc), a self confessed manwhore and betting man. When the first chapter has him agreeing to something which made him seem a self-opinionated, disrespectful jerk, well, it seemed my caution had been justified. Then, however, Amy Andrews steps in and weaves her word magic and turns the story all around and he becomes the adorable, admirable reformed rake! Phew!! High school science teacher, Em Newman, has had enough of jerks, especially sporting ones, so really doesn’t want to fall for any of the Sydney Smoke Rugby players, even though her best friend, Harper, has married one of them. She certainly doesn’t want to have anything to do with Linc – she’s heard all about his manwhore reputation! However, Linc falls hard for Em and is determined to win her over – and he’s difficult to resist! There are plenty of problems ahead, challenges to be met and tough loving advice to be given (by Harper to Em) as well as Em’s full name to be revealed! This is an extremely hot and steamy romance with a strong male lead brought to earth and rocketed skyward by love. The storyline is engaging and there are plenty of twists and turns to enable the author to impose her own stamp on the proceedings. It involves many of the characters from the earlier books in the series – ‘Playing By Her Rules’ and ‘Playing it Cool’ – and it is great to see how their relationships continue to develop. Despite this, I believe it can still be read as a standalone. I love the glossary at the end of the book, where the author defines many Aussie terms in her own inimitable way! If you like your romances hot and steamy with a hunky male lead finding love changes his attitudes and behaviour, you’ll probably love this. Many thanks to the publishers who gifted me a copy of this book through NetGalley without any obligations. This is my honest review after choosing to read it!
Linda__ More than 1 year ago
Loved this book! This is a very sexy romance between Em and Linc. Linc is a player and never gives a woman more than a night. Em always picks the wrong guy and has stopped dating while she gets over her most recent broken heart. Too bad that Linc is so hot that he could make her forget her own name. ... This is a very hot and sexy novel that fans of the genre will love (it is among the spicier of this author's work). While this is part of a series, it is a stand alone novel. The author is on my must read authors' list.
Lashea677 More than 1 year ago
ARC Review: Playing the Player (Sydney Smoke Rugby) by Amy Andrews Why am I so addicted to this group of loud mouth, clueless, athletes? It's like watching a replay. You know what's going to happen, but have a hard time looking away. Playing the Player was a temptation that I wouldn't have missed. These big bad men always end up losing their hearts but the treasure they gain makes it all worthwhile. Em brought Linc to his knees and he never saw it coming.