Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Book Review: Down By Contact (The Barons #2) by: Santino Hassell

Release Date: January 16, 2018
from InterMix
Goodreads | Amazon
Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley and voluntarily provided a fair and honest review.
"Two rival football players begin a game with higher stakes than the Super Bowl in this steamy romance from the author of Illegal Contact.

Simeon Boudreaux, the New York Barons’ golden-armed quarterback, is blessed with irresistible New Orleans charm and a face to melt your mama’s heart. He’s universally adored by fans and the media. Coming out as gay in solidarity with his teammate hasn’t harmed his reputation in the least—except for some social media taunting from rival linebacker Adrián Bravo.

Though they were once teammates, Adrián views Simeon as a traitor and the number-one name on the New Jersey Predators’ shit list. When animosity between the two NFL players reaches a boiling point on the field, culminating in a dirty fist fight, they’re both benched for six games and sentenced to joint community service teaching sullen, Brooklyn teens how to play ball.

At first, they can barely stand to be in the same room, but running the camp forces them to shape up. With no choice but to work together, Simeon realizes Adrián is more than his alpha-jerk persona, and Adrián begins to question why he’s always had such strong feelings for the gorgeous QB…"

My Thoughts:

Down By Contact was a fantastic read and I absolutely loved this book. Simeon and Adrian are both fantastic characters and their chemistry was ridiculous. I adored this book from beginning to end and when I was done all I wanted was more. I could have read about these two forever.

Hate to love is one of my favorite tropes, but it’s also a really hard sell for me, but holy wow does Santino Hassell execute it perfectly. I’m not sure if I’ve ever read hate to love done as well as he did it in this series. Simeon and Adrian have such an intense relationship, both when they hate one another and when that hate turns to love. This book was so raw and gritty and I lost my damn mind over it. And I also LOVE how he portrays NYC. It is so authentic. I always nitpick books in NYC since I live there and it’s so hard to really capture the city, but Santino really nails it. Also the book is downright filthy and damn I wanted more.

I adored both Simeon and Adrian. I had already come to love Simeon in Illegal Contact, but I came to love him even more. He is such a charmer and is so much fun. And Adrian! That boy is so dramatic and I loved it. Their banter was fantastic and I love how they played off one another. The pacing of their relationship was perfect and I love how everything played out. Their story was filled with funny moments and heartbreaking moments and serious moments and dirty moments and I loved watching them work through their trials and tribulations, both together and alone. I also loved checking in with Gavin again because I forever love him and his cranky self.

Down By Contact was such a fantastic read and I need more from this world. This series is a new favorite of mine and I cannot recommend it enough.

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