Today we are excited to introduce you to The Love Playbook by Suze Winegardner.
The Love Playbook
When Avery Stone learns her dad will be fired if his high school team doesn’t make the playoffs, she has to get her head out of her day planner and do something—anything—to help him win. Even if it means secretly coaching the team’s newest player, who seems to have more game than skill.
Lucas Black just transferred to Hillside with a fake name and a big secret. The MVP of every team he’d played on since he was seven—not to mention the MVP of every post-game party—he can’t understand why since arriving at Hillside, he’s been unable to catch a single. Freaking. Ball.
Until…Avery. Amazing, kind, generous, and crazy-freaking-hot Avery.
As Lucas goes from zero back to hero and Avery struggles with just what Lucas means to her, she inadvertently sets them on a collision course with Lucas’s secret…a secret that could take down not only Lucas but her father too.
DISCLAIMER: This Entangled Teen Crush contains a football player hotter than the Texas sun, hotel cuddles, and a steamy makeout session in the rain.
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The Love Playbook Excerpt:
Practice had sucked. But he couldn’t lie—it had still been better than the day before. He caught a couple of balls, and on one occasion he absolutely definitely ran in the right direction on the field, which to be honest felt like a miracle.
But at least Colin had offered him a ride home. He wasn’t sure he had the energy to walk home. Besides which, with the luck he’d been having, he’d probably have gotten run over for real.
Colin peered up at the streetlights as he turned into Lucas’s neighborhood. “It’s like day time here.”
“Keeps the roaches at bay,” he replied tiredly.
“Turn right at the undercover cop car at the corner.”
“Huh? Which is the…ohh.” Colin said as he passed the black Ford with the two guys sitting drinking coffee. “Wow. Not sure I’ve ever seen undercover cops in real life.”
Of course he hadn’t. Lucas hadn’t either until he’d moved here.
“You know, don’t take Dad too seriously,” Colin said. “He doesn’t understand that some of the players are there to have fun, not to make it into a profession, or to go to college.”
Lucas knew that. “Yeah, I get that. But there’s no use having a half-assed team. Especially here in Hillside.”
“That’s true, too. This is a football town, has been since before my dad played here. Before that even. My dad said it’s the only thing keeping the town alive. The stores open. He was right last night, you know. If you play on the team, everyone here will know who you are. Which is pretty cool. Especially when half the girls in the school are screaming your name Friday night.” He laughed. “Although it’s better when they’re screaming your name on Saturday night, too.”
Lucas got the feeling that Colin had told that joke many, many times before, but still he laughed with him.
“Anyway. There are a few players who need this gig. Need the team to keep winning, need to get their name out there. LeVonn, for example. He has a big family,” Colin said as if that explained everything. Which Lucas guessed it did. Big family meant a lot of money to get everyone to college. “Most everyone else is in it for high school glory, and not much beyond.”
“Not even you?” Lucas asked. Colin was easily as good a quarterback as Jake at his old school.
Colin shrugged. “I’ve got a place at my dad’s alma mater, but haven’t decided what I want to do.”
“Dude. You haven’t got much time. You graduate next year, don’t you?” Lucas asked, suddenly wondering if Avery and Lucas were seniors.
“Yeah. My sister’s going to an out-of-state school, but I can’t seem to pull the trigger.” Colin said with a frown, as if he couldn’t believe he’d shared his doubt with Lucas.
“Just graduate and roll out of here, man,” Lucas said, staring out of the windshield at his new home, peeling paint on the window sills, and wooden steps that were frankly a death trap. “This is me.” Lucas nodded toward his house.
Colin looked at the car up on blocks. “Let me know if you need a ride to practice.”
“I really appreciate that, man.” He stuck out his hand, awkwardly since they were in the car.
Colin took it. And then held on. “As long as you forget about my sister.”
“Who? What?” He was stunned. This didn’t happen in real life did it? He’d literally never been warned off a girl before.
“That’s the spirit. She doesn’t exist for you. She’s…fragile. Don’t even think about getting involved with her. Or I will get you booted from the team.”
“No problem,” he said, somehow not able to actually say the words “I will not talk to, or touch your sister” out loud.
“See you tomorrow.”
“I appreciate it, man.” Lucas said again, meaning it most seriously.
“No problem,” Colin echoed.
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About the Author: Suze Winegardner is a British YA writer, currently living overseas with her military husband, and lovely Lab. She loves Buffy, Fray Bentos pies, Archer, cheese, and the serial comma. Wait – Cadbury Flakes too. And naps. Wait, what was the question? Anyway, she thinks her life is chock full of hoot, just a little bit of nanny…and if you get that reference, she already considers you kin.
Connect with Suze Winegardner • Website
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