After a woman claims she’s pregnant with Wade O’Riley’s love child, Major League Baseball’s most celebrated catcher and ladies’ man is slapped on the wrist by management and ordered to improve his image. His enforcer is the team’s publicist, the tough and sexy Samantha McNead.
When Wade needs a date for a celebrity wedding, Sam steps up to the plate as his “girlfriend.” But given her secret crush on him and that one awkward night a year ago in a stuck elevator with too much scotch, the whole thing is an exercise in sexual tension.
Wade is thrilled when the pretense turns into an unexpected night of hot passion. But the next day Sam is back to her cool self. As a catcher, Wade’s used to giving the signals, not struggling to read them. Now, to win the love of his “pretend” girlfriend, he needs a homerun–even it involves
stealing a few bases…
I wasn't sure about Wade in the first book, but I'm happy to report Shalvis delivered. I think one of the things I liked best about this novel is that there wasn't really an outside force keeping the two separated. They each had to overcome their own personal issues in order for them to be together, but there wasn't anything outside of that keeping them apart.
A year ago Sam and Wade had a passionate encounter in an elevator. Ever since, they've been avoiding each other as much as possible. But when a woman makes a claim that she's pregnant with Wade's baby management steps in and says he has to clean up his act. Sam is charged with keeping Wade in line, so when he needs a date for a wedding she steps in as his "pretend" girlfriend.
The problem? They aren't playing pretend when it comes to the feelings between them. But Wade isn't looking for anything more than a good time, and Sam wants more from him than a casual fling.
As much as I liked Double Play, the first book in this series, Slow Heat worked so much better for me. I don't know if it's because I enjoyed the characters more or because of the overall plot, but I was wrapped up in the story from page one.
I really liked both Sam and Wade. They had chemistry in spades, both on the physical front and the emotional. Their banter was quick and witty and they really played off of each other. Shalvis has always excelled at dialogue, and this is no exception. They really played well of each other and I was definitely invested in their relationship.
Sam was a strong woman, but I really wished we would have seen something more come about with her family. They constantly dumped on her and I really wanted to see her stand up for herself.
Wade was somewhat more complex than Sam. Although he presents a laid back attitude to the world, he's really got some deep issues. I liked that Shalvis really took the time to explore these and didn't skim over them. I especially liked the dynamics between him and his father. I think their interactions showed major insight into both characters.
Other than my frustration with Sam and her family, my other major problem with this story was how abruptly it ended. I think both characters deserved more than what they got in the end. I turned the page expecting their to be more and was severely disappointed when there wasn't. They kind of got the shaft there.
Otherwise this is another hit from Shalvis. If you're looking for a strong, witty contemporary romance Slow Heat comes highly recommended.
4.5 out of 5
This book is available from Berkley. You can buy it here or here in e-format. Share this post!