New Adult, Romance
Part of a Series?:
I believe it is the first of the Rusk University series.
May 13th, 2014
You Can Find the Book At:
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Cora Carmack follows up her trio of hits—Losing It, Faking It, and Finding It—with this thrilling first novel in an explosive series bursting with the Texas flavor, edge, and steamy romance of Friday Night Lights.
In Texas, two things are cherished above all else—football and gossip. My life has always been ruled by both.
Dallas Cole loathes football. That’s what happens when you spend your whole childhood coming in second to a sport. College is her time to step out of the bleachers, and put the playing field (and the players) in her past.
But life doesn’t always go as planned. As if going to the same college as her football star ex wasn’t bad enough, her father, a Texas high school coaching phenom, has decided to make the jump to college ball… as the new head coach at Rusk University. Dallas finds herself in the shadows of her father and football all over again.
Carson McClain is determined to go from second-string quarterback to the starting line-up. He needs the scholarship and the future that football provides. But when a beautiful redhead literally falls into his life, his focus is more than tested. It’s obliterated.
Dallas doesn’t know Carson is on the team. Carson doesn’t know that Dallas is his new coach’s daughter.
And neither of them know how to walk away from the attraction they feel.
One thing that I always want to accomplish when writing my book reviews is absolute honesty. I don’t write reviews to please, or to make people happy or any of that sort of thing. So I’m not going to lie when I say that I haven’t been overly impressed with Cora Carmack yet. I ADORE her. I follow her on everything and I think she’s an absolute doll and I think that she’s fantastic with her fans. I’ve read her previous books and have enjoyed them, but not hugely impressed.
However, with All Lined Up, I was really really excited. VERY excited. Its about romance and football. I LOVE it. There aren’t a lot of books with sports in it and so I was very highly excited about it. I’m also writing a NA/YA contemporary romance that centers around a baseball centered town (once The Awakened is done being written) so I was also excited to get some inspiration. Which I have. Which is bad because I need to finish my YA sci-fi first.
Moving on though, I said in a Jenny Han review earlier this week that even though one book of an author may not impress you, you should never just write off that author and I’m very glad I did that in the case of Cora Carmack. While her previous books haven’t made a deep impression on me, this one most definitely did.
From page one to the last page, I was hooked. I was addicted to the romance, and I was highly addicted to the story of the football team and whether they’d win or not. Cora does an absolutely fantastic job of balancing the romance and the sports in the story. She also does a great job of doing justice to the sport, while also making sure that its accessible to those who may not be into sports. I think that’s a hard thing to do but she manages it so easily and I think that comes a lot from balancing the point of view between both Dallas and Carson. We get the romance on both sides and the football on both sides, but very different views of each and it plays out quite nicely.
Which brings me to the characters themselves. I love Dallas because she is so real. Her feelings toward love, and trusting people are so real, and her animosity toward football makes so much sense and I start hating football too. And I love football! She just feels so real and her emotions are raw and genuine and you can’t help but feel them with her.
And Carson! Thank you Cora Carmack for giving me yet another book boyfriend to be massively in love with. I have a weakness for hot athletic boys and you bring this one into my life like a hurricane and I just couldn’t handle it. I love a struggling athlete, and that is exactly what Alex is going to be in my own sports novel. I love that Carson feels so deeply, about everything. I love that he works so hard too. He wants to succeed so badly and he works everyday in order to make that happen. It’s not easy for him and its not handed to him. He genuinely has to work really hard to make it happen, and I love that. It makes you love him even more.
Basically, this book made a Cora fan. She had a great story, perfectly balanced with romance and sports and excitement and sexy steamy scenes. She creates memorable, real characters in both Dallas and Carson and everyone that surrounds them. I literally sped through this book so fast that when I reached the end, I was so sad that it was the end. Cora has a real voice for romance and I hope there are more in this series because I’m ready for more football and sexy boys!
4 out of 5 Stars