In Katie Rose’s irresistible battle of wits, a case of mistaken identity lands a female fan in bed with a sexy superstar — and in major-league trouble.
House-sitting for a rich and famous friend has its perks, and Darcy Hamel isn’t shy about enjoying them. Especially when it means scoring a ticket to an exclusive fashion show hosted by the New Jersey Sonics. An avid baseball fan, Darcy has always dreamed of meeting the team — especially the starting pitcher whose body is as hot as his fastball. But there’s a catch. The gala is by invitation only. To get behind the velvet rope, mild-mannered Darcy will have to pose as party girl Lydia Logan.
Schmoozing is one of the downsides of fame, but Chase Westbrook knows how to liven up even the dullest event. And nothing spices a night up more than a beautiful socialite with a naughty reputation. What Chase doesn’t expect is a hint of sweetness beneath her sultry façade. Flirtation turns to seduction and leaves him aching for more. Chase just doesn’t know who the real Lydia is: the spoiled tease crying foul over some missing diamonds or the alluring woman making a play for his heart.
BRING ON THE HEAT (The Boys of Summer #1)
by Katie Rose
AMAZON * BARNES & NOBLE * KOBO * GOODREADS
It was the last part that froze her into place. She could actually meet the team? Not just watch them from the stands as she did every chance she got, not just cheer them on in her humble living room when they won or cry with them when they lost, but actually see them, speak to them, maybe even shake their hands live and in person?
“Special guests include Chase Westbrook, the ace pitcher for the Sonics . . .”
Darcy’s heart pounded as she thought of the handsome ballplayer. “Hollywood,” they called him because of his jet-black hair, killer eyes, and a body to die for. He took the mound with a confidence that was stunning for a youth of twenty-five, and when he flashed that megawatt smile . . .
And she, Darcy Hamilton of little old Medford, New Jersey, would be in the same room with the man of her dreams!
Darcy giggled at the thought. Venturing excitedly to Lydia’s walk–in closet, she flung open the doors and gazed at the bewildering array of clothes.
Doubt crept in as she viewed the stylish wardrobe. It was like paging through People magazine the day after the MTV Video Music Awards. Every cutout, funky, dominatrix-type outfit she could think of dangled before her. There was a black leather catsuit with a bare midriff, a leopard-print minidress with a big gold zipper up the middle, a backless microfiber red cocktail dress, and a gold-sequined gown that plunged far below the waistline. A midnight-blue gown looked conservative from the back, but when Darcy took it out she saw the front was nothing more than a sheer lace bra.
There was also a question of fit. Her size six suddenly seemed enormous when she held up a sheer nude Givenchy that appeared the width of one of her stockings, and a Versace skirt that barely covered the essentials.
The shoes were even worse. There were shiny black heels, stilettos of every imaginable color, gold leather sandals that strapped up to the knee, spiky boots that looked tortured, and even a pair of platforms that had platforms of their own.
Her heart sank. Lydia’s closet hammered home her worst fear: she didn’t belong with the rich and fabulous crowd. She couldn’t picture herself showing up in public in any of these clothes. And even if she did meet the Sonics and Chase, what did she think was going to happen? Especially when they realized she wasn’t anyone wealthy or important, but simply an employee of the woman who’d actually been invited?
Snatching her cell phone from her bag on its first ring, she could only smile as she saw her best friend’s name on the caller ID. “Hey, Cara.”
“So are you at the Wild Child’s house?”
“Yes. I just got her out of bed and on her way. Good thing I arrived when I did. She was dead to the world and would have missed her flight again.”
“She is lucky you look after her the way you do,” Cara huffed.
“You’ve got that right,” Darcy agreed. “She is nice sometimes, though. She offered me an invite to the Sonics Foundation party.”
“OMG, that’s amazing! I am so jealous! You’re getting to meet the Sonics? And Chase?”
“It does sound great, but I don’t think I’m going.”
“Why the hell not?” Cara demanded.
“It’s a really upscale affair,” she said, tracing the embossed lettering on the invitation. “The event is being held at the Union League Club in Philadelphia. You know that building on Broad Street with the big winding staircase?”
“It’s just kind of . . . intimidating. And I’m sure they’re hoping for a donation. I don’t have the means for something like that.”
“How did she get invited? Somehow I can’t see Lydia Logan as Lady Bountiful.”
“Apparently her grandfather contributes to the sponsored charity,” Darcy explained.
“There you go. So he has already given them money. You aren’t doing anything immoral by attending in her place. Next?”
“It’s black tie. I don’t have anything appropriate.”
“So borrow something of hers,” Cara said impatiently. “She has more than enough clothes.”
“She said I could wear one of her outfits as long as I get it cleaned. But you should see her wardrobe.” She fingered a slashed cocktail dress held together by chains. “I can’t decide if I would look more like a female impersonator or a stripper.”
“Oh, come on. So her clothes are a little edgy. You could pull that off—you look a lot like her. Listen, I’m not letting you say ‘no’ to this. This is your chance to get out among real people, to have fun, and even meet stud-boy Westbrook!”
“No buts. You and I have been watching the Sonics play for what, ten years now? You’ve been a baseball fan since we were kids! You even have that autographed baseball on your nightstand that your dad gave you, signed by all the greats!”
“Yes, but even if I went, I’m no Lydia Logan. This is high society, people with real money. They would be expecting someone like her and I wouldn’t have the first idea what to say to them. You’ve never met her, but Lydia is a lot of fun and a man magnet. She is cool, beautiful . . . she simply lights up a room.”
“So does a thunderstorm,” Cara snorted. “You sell yourself short—you’re a helluva better person. She tries on men like they’re hand-me-downs. And didn’t she sleep with her best friend’s fiancé?”
“That might just be loose talk—”
“I doubt it. Listen, all you have to do is laugh at everything anyone says and act like you’re having a great time,” Cara insisted. “Keep an open mind and just try on a couple of her dresses. I know you’ll find something that looks good.”
“You really think so?”
“Yes. Listen, don’t blow this. I get to live vicariously through you. I can’t remember the last time I got laid, and you’re getting to meet Chase! If you don’t go, I will.”
I’m a huge baseball fan and love sports themed romance novels so I was very excited when BRING ON THE HEAT by Katie Rose was offered for download on NetGalley. I had never read any of Katie’s aka Colleen Quinn other books, but once again taking a chance on a new author paid off.
Bring on the Heat is a Cinderella themed story. Darcy Hamel is sweet, very down-to-earth, somewhat shy and basically a normal person. Her means of income comes from housesitting and sometimes acting as a personal assistant for a heiress who is a wild party girl that is seldom in town, or in the country for that matter. She keeps Lydia Logan’s life from falling apart while she jet-sets around the globe with her friends and numerous lovers.
The story starts off with Lydia preparing to leave the country to hook up with a prince which leaves her unable to attend a charity event being put on by the Sonics, a professional baseball team her wealthy grandfather supports. She offers Darcy the tickets and a pass to wear something from her closet since Darcy doesn’t have appropriate clothing for the black tie event. Normally shy and let’s face it, mousey Darcy would turn her down, but she’s been a fan of the local baseball team, the Sonics, all her life and would do just about anything to meet her crush, Chase Westbrook, the team’s pitcher.
Chase loves playing baseball professionally and he is talented. He is also dedicated to improving and works harder at it than most of the other guys on his team. He puts a lot of pressure on himself in order to impress his father who has never fully supported Chase’s decision to play baseball for a living. He loves the Sonics, but his goal is to play for a bigger name team so his father will finally be proud of him. This goal drives him and he can be a bit self-serving in his pursuit of it. I felt like at heart Chase is a good guy and I liked seeing how being with Darcy really brings that out in him because although Chase is sexy as hell and can be very charming, he is no prince. For instance, he comes to the Sonics charity event in the hopes of meeting Lydia Logan, knowing if he can get in tight with her he may be able to get her grandfather to put in a good word for him with the New York team he wants to be traded to.
At the event, Chase sees Darcy – who in preparation for her once-in-a-lifetime-night has had a full spa day, is dressed in Lydia’s designer clothes and Lydia’s jewels, and looks very much like Lydia herself – and both he and everyone else at the event believes she is Lydia. Darcy makes several attempts to tell them the truth, but no one believes her. Plus with the bustle and noise of the atmosphere making it difficult to communicate Darcy finally decides to just give in, enjoy the special night and the opportunity to spend time with Chase. They hit it off and she agrees to go back to his apartment. After a magical night, in fear he will finally realize she is not really the heiress he believes her to be, Darcy bolts while Chase is sleeping.
Much like Cinderella, she accidentally leaves behind a tidbit at Chase’s place, very expensive diamond earrings. Getting those earrings back and safe in Lydia’s jewelry box without embarrassing herself by Chase realizing she is not who he thinks she is is the reason Darcy gives herself for continuing to see Chase. Chase has his own ulterior motive for seeing “Lydia” again, but he also truly enjoyed his time with Darcy. She was not at all what he expected and he is a bit thrown that she disappeared without a goodbye. He’s not used to women ditching him, but he realizes it’s Lydia’s style. So he uses the earrings as bait to keep her coming back in hopes of having a real chance with her. Neither of them expected to fall in love, but they do, and it becomes more and more complicated the deeper they fall. Both for Darcy and Chase, neither being completely honest with the other.
I’ve probably told more of the story than I should and still haven’t done it justice. I felt it was romantic, maybe not quite fairytale romantic, but close. Chase and Darcy were good together. There were humorous moments, the dialogue was witty, and there were plenty of very steamy sexy times between these two. The story itself was well written and kept me turning the pages for more. I liked that it was told in a way that felt real, referring especially to the characters behavior and motivations, all of which were extremely well-developed by the author. The writing flowed at a perfect pace and after the devastating reveal and shock, eventually our lovers get their HEA ending. They were happy and so was I! 4.5 stars
~Complimentary copy downloaded from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review~
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Award-winning historical author Katie Rose aka Colleen Quinn makes her contemporary debut with the Boys of Summer novels, Bring on the Heat and Too Hot to Handle, which combine Katie’s true loves: baseball and romance!
When not watching baseball, Katie is at her lake house in New Jersey, hard at work on her next book.
Colleen is the bestselling author of twelve historical romance novels published under the names Colleen Quinn and Katie Rose.
CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR
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