Katiebabs is a self-proclaimed present day bluestocking with her head always in a book. She runs her own book blog called Babbling about Books and More!
Playing by Her Rules (Sydney Smoke Rugby #1) by Amy Andrews is a solid romance that has a Sports Romance and Second Chance at Reunion mash-up. The main couple are very lovable and cute. Their past is a big roadblock toward their HEA, but the hero will try everything he can to reclaim the heart the only woman he has ever loved- the roving journalist reporter who is thrown for a loop by her ex-boyfriend from high school who broke her heart. The reason her heart was broken may seem a big no-no by the hero, but it fits the tone of the story, and his “sacrifice” to help the heroine move on and do great things.
Matilda is a lifestyle columnist waiting for her big break. That comes in the form of Tanner Stone, Australia’s most popular rugby player. He refuses to do any interviews, but when Matilda slips and admits during a meeting she once dated Tanner, her boss forces her to get the scoop on Tanner. If Matilda does, which will be six installments, she’ll get a big promotion.
Tanner is thrilled his Tilly is back in his life. He’s going to win her heart again although she hates him for what he did right before she went away to college in the states. She caught him kissing another girl, her arch nemesis, which he planned because he felt Tilly would stick around with him and give up a great future. Tilly has no idea what he did, but he’s going to fix things now. He’ll agree to her interviews, but he’ll treat them more like dates. He wants to show her he far he has come not only in his career, but a softer and generous side to him he hides from the public eye. If he can show Tilly he’s a great guy, then maybe he has a shot with her again.
Tanner and Tilly are very cute together, especially when they banter and chat. Tanner is a big flirt with Tilly, who can’t help but eat it up even though she still has issues with what he did to her in high school. But her anger toward him is toned down, especially as she falls under his spell. The love scenes are nicely written and show great chemistry between the two.
There’s a great cast of secondary characters, specifically Tanner’s teammates I hope get their own stories in the future.
Playing by Her Rules is a sweet beach read that should appeal to Sports Romance fans.