Published April 2014 by Turquoise Morning Press
More than anything, Arizona Condors first baseman Greg Bartlesby wants to make his own name in the big leagues. Too bad being the son of MLB legend Jake “Big Man” Bartlesby makes that impossible. Even worse? His failed attempts to differentiate himself from his old man frequently land him in legal trouble. His latest brush with the law brings him in contact with an attorney he’s met before — as a dancer at the club where he was arrested for protecting her.
Jenn Simpson isn’t a stripper -- not that she can convince her idiot client her twin is the one doing the dancing. When Greg offers her sister a job at his father’s Foundation, Jenn is the one who accepts. She soon discovers she likes the work—and her boss—more than she should. The closer they get, the more important it becomes for her to convince Greg she’s not who he thinks. And when his father is hospitalized, compelling Greg to fast-track his leap to the majors by capitalizing on Big Jake’s fame, it might be too late to come clean.
" … You promised me dinner.” She dug her fingers into his knotted shoulder muscle and started to work out the kinks. His bat dropped to the ground, wood thunking against concrete. “I’m hungry.”
A low, guttural sound -- could have been groan or growl—rumbled from his throat as he whirled to face her. He settled his hands on her waist and hauled her against him.“Me, too.”
Then he captured her lips.
Surprised by his move, but not really, Jenn did more than let herself be kissed. She kissed him back. Enthusiastically and without reservation. She’d spent the better part of a month pretending not to be attracted to Greg, and she was tired of faking it. Time to press her advantage.
Their tongues tangled with a ferocity fueled by weeks of heightened awareness. Every shared glance, every accidental brush of their fingertips poured into the experience.
When she pulled away, they were both breathless and his arousal pressed into her stomach.
Looking as dazed as she felt, he stroked her chin with his thumb. “Whaddaya say we call out for pizza?”
She leaned in to press her lips to his. That it put the rest of her parts in alignment with his was a bonus, one she savored. He quivered when her lips brushed his ear. “I say, ‘Mangia!”
For some reason that escapes me, while I'm not a fan of the rock star romance, I love sports romance. Both center around some sort of celebrity, both have tons of skanky fans all too eager to sell their souls for a few intimate moments with the star, then you get the egos and sense of entitlement. Why one works for me and the other doesn't is a mystery. I think Sliding Into Home's hero Greg, may hold a bit of the answer. And it comes down to perception. Mine, his, the fans, heck the world in general. The whole story is based on Greg's perception of himself, his father, his relationship with Jenn, and how he wishes to be perceived as well. Am I getting to Zen? Ahhh, well, I'm in a mood.
In what was basically a lighthearted, fun sports romance with a thread of serious undertone, I of course decide to pick at the thread. While Greg is determined to step out of the shadow of his father and be his own man, everything he has done to this point in his life has sabotaged his efforts. He is certainly headed in the right direction now, but he still has a chip that's weighing him down. Enter Jenn.
Again with the perceptions. She at first perceives Greg as a spoiled, entitled playboy. She looks deeper and adjusts. Yaaay! Buuuut....... she plays into Greg's perception of her as the lawyer/stripper. It made for a truly fun read. Watching the characters grow not only into a couple but into better people. So you can take what you want from Sliding Into Home, a lighthearted romance with hot sex and warm fuzzies, or a study in how we feel about others perceptions and how it effects our own. Either way it is totally worth the time and money. I'm very pleasantly surprised at how much I got out of Arlene Hittle's book. Great job, Arlene!
Amazon/B&N/Turquoise Morning Press/ARe/Kobo/iTunes
Arlene Hittle is a Midwestern transplant who now makes her home in northern Arizona. She suffers from the well-documented Hittle family curse of being a Cubs fan but will root for the Diamondbacks until they run up against the Cubs. Longtime friends are amazed she writes books with sports in them, since she’s about as coordinated as a newborn giraffe and used to say marching band required more exertion than golf.
Website/Facebook/Twitter/Goodreads/Amazon author page/Pinterest/Instagram/Newsletter sign-up