Sacked by Jen Frederick
Series: Gridiron, #1
Contemporary Romance Sports /NA
Releases: September 6, 2015
Reviewed by Tori
Favorite Quote: “I started my life the day I met you. Everything else was just practice.”
What he wants he gets…
Knox Masters is a quarterback’s worst nightmare. Warrior. Champion. And…virgin. Knox knows what he wants–and he gets it. All American Football player? Check. NFL pros scouting him? Check. Now, he’s set his sight on two things. The national title. And Ellie Campbell. Sure, she’s the sister of his fellow teammate, but that’s not going to stop him. Especially not when he’s convinced Ellie is the one.
…but he’s never met her before.
But Ellie isn’t as sure. She’s trying to start a new life and she’s not interested in a relationship…with anyone. Beside it’s not just her cardinal rule of never dating her brother’s teammates that keeps her away, but Ellie has a dark secret that would jeopardize everything Knox is pursuing.
Knox has no intention of losing. Ellie has no intention of giving in. (Goodreads)
Fans of new adult sports themed romances by such authors as Kristen Callihan, Sarina Bowen, and Elle Kennedy will love Jen Frederick’s newest venture. Sacked is a fun, sexy, humorous, slightly angst filled romance that introduces a couple whose love story is complicated by family obligations. Facilitated by witty banter, adept communication, and delicious sexual tension, Frederick’s takes an all too common trope, adds a few twists, and infuses it with new life.
I have long enjoyed Jen Fredrick’s writing since I first read her collaboration Hitman series with Jessica Clare. Already a popular NA author with her Woodlands series, I was pleased to see her jump on the sports band wagon as this one of my favorite settings in romance. Frederick is a talented writer whose realistic and appealing characters draws me in like a moth to flame. They aren’t perfect and while we do see emotional turmoil, it’s not the eye rolling melodrama used to create unnecessary angst within the conflict. She takes pains to avoid the stereotypical over the top obnoxious behavior usually presented in this genre and instead gives us smart characters whose actions are genuine in reaction to the circumstances and their age. The insta love/lust aspect was a little eyebrow raising in the beginning but the reveal is entertaining; especially as the hero is a virgin for benign reasons and his love interest is a teammate’s sister who avoids football players like the plague.
Knox Masters is the big man on campus. A senior defensive end top NFL draft pick, this talented, dedicated, gorgeous, and intelligent is a likable hero who charmed my pants off. No, not literally but close. *wink* Not to say he didn’t have what I like to call his “guy moments” but he’s not malicious, self-absorbed, or a game player. No heavy or emotional baggage weighs him down. As self-assured off the field as he is on, once he meets Ellie Campbell there is no stopping him. He feels their connection and is determined to do everything possible to get her to see they belong together.
Ellie Campbell transferred to Western State with her brother Jack for numerous reasons. One reason especially that if it got out could not only hurt her and her brother, but the entire football team. A junior working towards her degree, Ellie doesn’t have time for romance, especially not with one of her brother’s teammates. Plus, she’s already went down that road before and the results are disastrous. Intelligent, witty, and snarky, her affordable nature belays a deep vulnerability that pinches at your heart once you are privy to the reasons behind it. Knox appeals to her more than she would like to admit but her fear of the past repeating itself has her running from her feelings. And him.
Football players and I don’t mix.
Knox and Ellie are a delight together and individually. Frederick’s characterization of them is strong, helped along by intense internal dialogue that further divulges into the personalities of Ellie and Knox. The romance builds slow but steady, infusing the story with yummy sexual tension and laugh out loud scenes that proves Knox and Ellie are indeed destined for one another. I cheered for Knox’s grand gestures and never ending attempts to break through Ellie’s walls. He sees Ellie and no one, besides Jack, ever has before. Ellie’s guilt over her secret drags her down but Knox holds her up every time she stumbles. They have such electrified banter and delectable crazy chemistry. Sexually charged scenes add a nice bite to story.
You can’t help but look at his hands, the heavily veined forearms and the bulging biceps, and wonder whether the parts of him you can’t see are just as big. You can’t watch him move on the field, making fucking magic with his body, and not wonder what it’d be like to feel it flush against your own.
Though the romance is the main theme, Frederick’s intertwines it with some drama laced external plotlines, using them to break down and rebuild Knox and Ellie at a mental level to help them learn what is most important for themselves. A dynamic and rambunctious cast of secondary characters helps keep the story following it’s predestined path and offer clues to the next hero. My vote is Matty or Jack. From the football team attempts to help Knox lose his v-card to Ellie’s brother Jack and his sweet protectiveness towards her, we see a diverse group where laughter and camaraderie are the prime ingredients on which they are built. They certainly kept me laughing with their advice, observations, and attempts to help.
“Are there rules for when you should text a girl?”
“Three days unless it’s a booty call, than anytime after ten.”
Of course, the best romances have a happy ending and Frederick’s doesn’t disappoint. Some may be surprised by some her choices but I wasn’t because it summed up Knox and his love for Ellie in a nutshell. I will say I thought the resolution to the“big secret” wrapped up a little too neatly for it being the main conflict. Regardless, Sacked is a fun sexy romance that reads hot and fast. I look forward to spending more time with the Warriors in the future.
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I think you will really like it.
I really do love Jen Frederick’s voice and writing style. Looking forward to this one.
I hope you enjoy it.
Jessica Peterson says
I absolutely LOVED Kristen Callihan and Elle Kennedy’s New Adult series, so I’m going to have to give Jen Frederick a try. Thanks for the recommendation!
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