An emotionally bruised soccer star keeps his relationships casual and controlled, but soon finds himself out of control when his heart becomes entangled with his best friend/teammate's younger sister in this steamy forbidden romance. Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Target Man by Annie Dyer, along with getting my impressions of it, then add this fourth installment in the Manchester Athletic series to your bookshelf!
She’s out of bounds...As the captain of Manchester Athletic, I know exactly what persona the media and fans need to see. Everything else is behind tightly closed bedroom doors.
I didn’t have a pretty childhood. I’m all kinds of broken. The only relationships I have contain boundaries, non-disclosure agreements and safe words.
My best friend and teammate is one of the few people who knows about what I do in private.
The one woman I think I can fall in love with - his sister.
Target Man is a steamy, slow burn with a bang, older brother's best friend, soccer sports romance, with a dirty talking hero who knows exactly how to take control. Be warned, one more chapter will keep you up all night! Part of the Manchester Athletic series, but can be enjoyed as a standalone.
MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:
As a fan of sports-fueled romances I found much to love about this book! From the first page to the last I was captivated by these characters and their angsty journey to HEA that Ms. Dyer dealt with head-on. My heart broke a time or two for all that the hero went through while my heart was rebuilt through Jesse and Jerrica's sweet and steamy encounters.
Jesse Sullivan’s the Team Captain for the Athletics and a man who likes to be in control...of both his professional and personal life. His childhood was filled with pain and trauma and is something that he deals with still today through therapy. He doesn't do relationships as he thinks himself incapable of intimacy which makes him fodder for gossip regarding his personal life. He's a man who likes his privacy, but when he loses his driver's license he finds himself needing the help of, and growing closer to, the one person he's been trying to stay away from...his best friend/teammate's younger sister, Jerrica. Jesse is a perfectly imperfect hero, one who's kind with a hidden heart of gold. He's sweet, sexy, with a naughty side that reeled me in completely. He's a delicious hero who unexpectedly finds a healing balm in his burgeoning connection to Jerrica and I found their journey to HEA a heartwarming one teeming with sexual tension.
When readers first see Jerrica Morris she's at a turning point in her life, not quite sure where she's going next. To give her time to think she moves in with her brother Nate which puts her directly in his teammate Jesse's path. She's an utterly delightful heroine, a bright and cheery breath of fresh air to Jesse's dark moments. She's kind, funny, and independent and I admired her being the one to first address her feelings for Jesse. Though he gently pushed her away she never gave up on him. For years she's felt an attraction to him, one he's denied them both as they undertook a sensual game of keep-away. When he needs a driver after losing his license though, she's the one who comes to his rescue, which leads to a burgeoning romance where past hurts and current desires are revealed. They grow closer throughout her six months of chauffeuring and while they seem like opposites at first they actually find commonalities and unwavering support in each other. With Jerrica, Jesse found exactly what he needed in a connection that he wasn't even looking for. She never pushed him for more than he could give, but was always there by his side in a crackling connection that held me captive. Even when they weren't together he knew he could reach out and his little ray of sunshine would be there!
On a whole theirs is a romance that played with my emotions, left me a bit raw, and warmed my heart with joy while making me blush a time or two…or more…heh heh! The heroine is strong and supportive, full of life and a positive outlook. The hero is flawed, but that makes me like him all the more. He knows he has demons from his childhood and isn't ashamed to deal with them through therapy. The issues he's dealing with are realistically and respectfully depicted by Ms. Dyer, which I applaud her for. The dichotomy of his kind and caring nature balanced with his naughty nature in the bedroom kept me glued to the pages and made for many erotically-charged scenes in the latter part of the book. Not only did the connection between Jesse and Jerrica crackle, but so too did the banter between Jesse and his teammates…particularly Nate. Their scenes were witty with brotherly banter that made them feel like a family...the kind of family that Jesse longs for. With each turn of the page I fell in love with Jesse more and more, my perfectly imperfect hero! I fell in love with him and other readers will too in this immensely satisfying addition to the Manchester Athletic series!
My rating for this is an A.
*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.
Annie Dyer lives in the north of England, not too far from the amazing city of Manchester. She is owned by several cats and many hens, narrowly avoiding being a mad cat woman by enslaving a very understanding husband. She’s an avid reader of many genres and if she’s not writing a book, she’s usually reading one!