Block Shot by Kennedy Ryan
Series: Hoops, #2
Released September 10, 2018
Review by Sheena:
Be braced. I read a book I think is vitally important and I love it and I can’t even think about how to collect myself. I’m really trying to pull it together because you need coherency and all I can think of is the precise angle to just start shoving Block Shot into reader’s hands and eyeballing (with intensely raised brows) until they finish it! Annnnd that is probably not the best way to go about it. I think you’d prefer I just organize some words and tell you what to expect from this new book.
Ahead you are going to encounter some bombastic, elite level of fangirling (or I can do the book shoovey, eyebally thing?!?) because Block Shot is here y’all!
L-O-V-E-D it. So many laughs. So many tears. I have what may be permanent pearl bead indentations on my hand from the frequent pearl clutching. I had no idea what to expect from this novel. I’ve been reading Kennedy Ryan for years and she always delivers. Her hallmark? Deeply poignant and transformative writing. Her characters are perfectly imperfect. The stories, contemporary and uncannily relatable and authentic.
Block Shot is book 2 in the best selling Hoops series and features Jared Foster and Banner Morale. Both Jared and Banner are very successful, and rival spots agents who have H-I-S-T-O-R-Y. It is the enemies to lovers and second chance romance you don’t want to miss.
Jared wasn’t supposed to go for girls like her. He was gorgeous, smart and impressive, even as a co-ed. Sure they would never happen, Banner settled for his friendship, cherishing their every moment together, studying and doing laundry at the campus laundromat (damn laundromat *shakes fist*…a little foreshadowing, but you will come to abhor said laundromat as well, promise!).
Banner was his dream girl. Unbelievably smart speaks several languages and is absolutely beautiful to him. Fed up with passing the time with easy and empty-headed girls, Jared makes his move and what began as a secret moment, is harshly stolen from them, setting the stage for years of acrimony and rivalry.
Until fate reunites them, the timing couldn’t be worse and Banner has all her industrial strength walls up, but Jared is taking his shot and he’ll be damned if anyone or anything is going to block it!
1.“You can quote me on that.”
“The Daughter of a Lion is Still a Lion”
The first time I saw this quote, I felt chills. It felt so powerful and affirming. Block Shot is full of quotes that speak to your soul. So much of the book is highlighted. I never want to forget the way these characters and their words made me feel. There is a strong arc about women and their place in the “man’s world” of sports management. Banner was a warrior and spoke to the feminist in my heart. Apart from the pro-woman rallying quotes, the quotables surrounding love and loyalty and utter honesty and self-actualization were sublime.
“I don’t give a damn about odds,” she says. “Odds don’t tell me what I can’t do. Odds just tell me how hard I’ll have to work to get what I want. Don’t allow anyone to make you feel less.”
Block Shot is exactly the book I didn’t know I needed. Reading it shined a bright light on how badly I’ve been missing connecting with heroines on a more visceral level. Talk about perfectly imperfect. Talk about relating to Banner and her inner dialogue soooo closely it was almost as if I gave my personal deets to the author to base her on. I can’t (want to!!!) give anything away but I saw soooo much of myself in this character it was scary-freaky-good. I was super invested in and connected to her right away. Her struggles with self-image, her bleeding heart, her will to win when they want her to lose. Her refusal to apologize for her vagina and her challenges with loyalty, honesty and doing the right thing, even when it hurts you the most. I’m willing to bet many women will be inspired. Many.
“You’re supposed to say something romantic.”
He’s so not what you expect. I love an alpha asshole hero. Probably more than the next girl. Surly is sexy to me, (not sorry!) and he…well, it took several chapters for me to stop squealing and exclaiming at something he did or said. I relished how he kept me so off balance. I loved his assholery.
Jared is such a tricky characterization. The nuance to make us love him for *exactly* who he is was such a delicate balance. Even better- he *didn’t* change! So often the standard romance M.O is to redeem and change the assholey hero. Not here! He was who he was and he loved Banner deep – and THAT was enough. He was still him, he didn’t morph into the suddenly anti-Jared guy. He was juxtaposed with another rival character and he didn’t have to go full on sap to still be worthy and for the story to work.
*Further proof that Banner is indeed every woman, I got a kick out of Banner having the exact same reaction to Jared that I was regarding his “Jaredness.” At like 12% or 17% through I had to take a break and totally go I CAN’T BELIEVE HE SAID THAT! HOW DOES HE SAY THESE THINGS! and dammit if Banner didn’t have the same sentiments, verbatim later on in the book!
4. Refreshing and Unpredictable
I never could really figure out exactly where the story was going, the main arc and subplots were multi-layered in a way where literally anything could happen. A little more than midway through I was tormented with the desire to find out what is going to HAPPEN. I felt like I was surrounded by forks in the road, left or right, what will happen, eeeek! It is exciting and a refreshing thrill to have to be so *present* in a book you are reading because the characters zig when you expect a zag. This is definitely not “romance-paint-by-numbers” where you see the resolution coming a mile away. There is a slick brilliance to crafting a story where the build-up could have several viable outcomes. Especially in the last quarter of the book. Pins and needles.
5. Bold and unafraid to go there
By “there” I mean, any place that might challenge you or make you uncomfortable. Her stories can feel like mirrors, held up and forcing head on self-examination. Kennedy Ryan tells you a story of realistic heartache, pain, fear, loss, battle, and perseverance and dares you to look away. Loved! And true to form, Kennedy is on trend and pushing the envelope, always making you think and evaluate your personal moral compass. Always framing her characters in a way where right and wrong can be two sides of the same coin. No perfect people here folks, just romantic authenticity.
“So you want me to ride you, Jared?” I ask playfully as he stretches out under me and I straddle his strong thighs. “Do I want you to ride?” He challenges me with one cocked brow. “Hell, no. If you’re taking the top, you better drive.”
“Is everything okay?”
Okay? Is nirvana okay? Is utopia okay? Because that is what Banner’s tight-fisted pussy feels like around my hungry cock. Like someone tossed paradise and heaven into a blender to make this moment. “Yeah, it’s good,” I say.
Understatement. No need to reveal her pussy sent me into an existential crisis.
I withdraw only for a second and to the very tip, but it feels like torture until I push back in. She surrounds me. The smell of her invading my nostrils, the taste of her lingering on my tongue, the feel of her gripping not just my cock but my whole body.
I can’t imagine not having experienced this novel.
If you’ve read it already or are currently reading it, friend me and message me for heavens sakes so we can connect because I have THOUGHTS!!!!
Recent Kennedy Ryan Reviews: Long Shot