Book Review – Wrecking Ball by P. Dangelico

by Maryse on February 6, 2017 · 5 comments

in My Book Reviews

Wrecking Ball (Hard To Love Book 1)
SWEEEEEET but in perfect harmony with the whole slow-burn, OH-NO-HE-DIDN’T-WHAT-A-JERK kind of fun! Gah I love a reluctant hero (reclusive, or just darn moody) and this one had him in droves!

It was exactly as my fellow readers squeeeeee’d about.

D.G.: Soooo….Wrecking Ball!!!!!!!!!!! If you FLOVED The Wall of Winnipeg and Me, then you will definitely dig WB!!! This guy is such a strong, huge quiet jerk! And she wants to throat punch him like a lot!!!! Mix in a kid…some football and crazy jealousy…my kinda book!

Megan: You guys! Wrecking Ball. Make it happen. So good!

Jan: Oh yeah DG Wrecking Ball was up there for me too.

MichelleS: Wrecking Ball – 5 stars. Loved the slow burn.

Cheryl: I just finished Wrecking Ball this morning and I LOVED it too. Yes, similar to The Wall of Winnipeg and Me, with football player H and s-l-o-w burn romance. Loved the tough, no-nonsense h who even though she was not immune to the H’s gorgeousness, she still didn’t like him because he was an insufferable a$$. Also, loved cute little Sam and the supporting characters Ethan and Amber. Can’t wait for book 2.

Maryse: Yep you guys… I’m already loving Wrecking Ball. This is EXACTLY my type of book. The writing, and flow and wit, and intro… nice and slow and it’s all about her at first. I AM LOVING. No eye-rolling. No cliches. THIS.

Jean: Maryse, I think you will love Wrecking Ball!

D.G.: I loved The Wall of Winnipeg and Me but I think I enjoyed this one even more *gasps*. Wrecking Ball is a slow burn BUT does go a little further into the relationship than WoW did. It wasn’t a at the end of the book, final chapter they finally got their act together kinda book.

Jan: Everyone needs to read Wrecking Ball! It’s lovely. So glad you liked it too, even straight after The Wall of Winnipeg and Me. Yes, the same but different. …Wrecking Ball is another slow burn, but it didn’t drag at all for me. Interesting characters and plot. Well written.

It’s not all that much different (storyline-wise) than some of our favorite “assistant with a jerk boss” romances. But you know how some just seem to stand out, above the rest? The kind of books that even if it’s a new-to-you author, you just know you love her voice, her writing style, and want to read her backlist? This is one of those. The writing, the story flow, the character development, the inner dialogue and the realism (quirky life moments) that make it all come to life.

It’s what sets this book apart from the influx of releases in this genre that are good, but not as great, as some. This is what makes this one an awesome “sports-star” read to the caliber of our favorite authors like Elle Kennedy, Ginger Scott, and Mariana Zapata.

And I absolutely LOVED that this was entirely from her POV. I didn’t have to switch back and forth and lose my reading momentum. And being in her shoes meant I was ALWAYS wondering and worrying and swooning along with her, when it came to him.

So what’s it about?

Cam, mourning the death of her husband, and recovering from his now-infamous fraudulent business practices,

I mourned not only the loss of my lover and best friend, but also the death of everything I believed to be true. All those years… all those memories were a lie. My husband embezzled millions from anybody willing to trust him with their savings account. I lived it and it still sounds like the bad plot of a Lifetime movie to me. Unfortunately, though, it is not a Lifetime movie, it is the steaming pile called my life. I have the paperwork to prove it.

…is hired to “nanny” the nephew of a HUGELY famous football player. Thing is? Nobody has been able to keep the job because this guy? He’s IMPOSSIBLE to work for.

I won’t sugar coat this for you, the client is a difficult man to work for. Thus, the salary.”

Ah yes, here it comes.

Then she finds out exactly WHO she will be working for.

I grow very still as I process why that name sounds… holy hot bawls. The starting quarterback of the NY Titans.

“Is this going to be a problem?” he asked warily.

But Cam is at the end of her rope (having been declined for numerous teaching job opportunities due to her soiled reputation), and she wants to pay her parents back for the fortune they gave her for her legal fees and defense attorneys. And as awful as her new employer is, the income is exactly what she needs to get her life back on track.

Even from across the room, they’re the iciest gray eyes I’ve ever seen, cold and unforgiving. A strange feeling sweeps through me. As if I just stuck my finger in an electric socket. The experience is not a pleasant one. I scowl. Then he scowls. Then he turns away. Ugh, this is not good. I’m feeling the heebeegeebees and slightly bummed at this inauspicious start.

A little at a time, I recall bits and pieces of news I picked up over the years. Shaw has a reputation for being closed off. He went from number one media darling when he was drafted, to Mr. Guarded in recent years.

And so she sets to thickening her skin.

“Did you just say one hundred thousand? For three months of childcare?”

“Yes,” he says with a completely straight face. And the maniacal spark is back in my eyes.

“With a stipulation, however. There will be three payments made. One at the end of each month–– assuming you last. I mean, you remain in Mr. Shaw’s employ.”

Oh right, he’s difficult. For a hundred thousand, I could deal with it. Just as long as he didn’t marry me… and lie to me… and run a Ponzi scheme under my nose for five years.

Although, you know how that goes. Mr. JACKA$$ finally gets to her, good and deep (and not in the good way). Tee hee. See what I did there? *snort* :P

Nope. That’s not yet. His insulting demeanor reaches an all-time low, and even Cam can no longer deal.

No way am I allowing this irredeemable prick to see how upset I am, to take the last shred of dignity I posses. He doesn’t even warrant the effort it takes for me to be angry. But I am, unimaginable so. He and his unhygienic beard can go to hell.

And that’s when the real fun starts!!! :D !!! I’m stopping here. Yeah… you know me, and my book-teasing. If you’re in the mood for a good sports romance with a guy that is NOT a player (no matter how coveted he is), in fact he’s almost intolerable, you will LOVE this journey. From heartache to the most amazing friendship.

And more.

It has it all. Hilarious scenes, infuriating moments, a real-life fantasy come to life, but not without a healthy dose of angst, self-doubt, self-respect and extreme steam. But not so fast!!! This one takes it’s sweet time to build (but never so slow that you get bored), and it is DELIGHTFUL. Friendship, affection and embarrassing silly bits coupled with fulfilling events that progress to that unputdownable relief. Lots of developments, whether they be playful or profound, that will have you becoming attached to these characters, and feeling as if you’re  part of their world.

I loved it!

Some have mentioned a somewhat rushed ending (a better first half to second half) and while I see where they are coming from (the second half had a few developments that were somewhat far-fetched and frustrating),

Tessa: I finished Wrecking Ball. I’m going to be honest. Most of it was super sweet and I adored the slow burn. However, first, the end was too quick to be resolved. It felt fake, and not just the end issue but a few other issues. Second, some of the secondary characters felt flat. They were more caricatures rather than fully fleshed characters. The mom also didn’t seem consistant at all. The good part, the story story of the MCs was great. I was hooked into the story, and the way they related to each other. Their interaction was spot on and felt real.

Jean: Tessa, I think I’m with you on Wrecking Ball. I loved the beginning and the slow build-up, but then it became a little predictable and yes, the end was tied up a little too quickly. But, I still liked it.

I still enjoyed the journey as a whole. For me, it was done just right!

4.5 stars!!

I absolutely will be checking out this author’s other works. This is MY kind of storytelling!

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Cheryl February 6, 2017 at 7:28 PM

Great review Maryse! I totally agree!! Can’t wait to read more from this author.

Maryse February 6, 2017 at 7:30 PM

Heck YES!!!!!!! Cheryl, that was a GREAT recommendation, my friend!

Jen C February 7, 2017 at 2:27 AM

Great review! I absolutely LOVED this book – I have to agree the last 50%, maybe even last 25% was a bit rushed/frustrating … but overall it held on enough for me haha.

Jessica Peterson February 7, 2017 at 3:46 PM

Love discovering new-to-me authors! I’m having a huge sports romance moment right now (thanks to Elle Kennedy and Kristin Callihan!) so this sounds like something I’d love. A slow burn done right is one of my favorite things ever. Off to one click now! Thanks for the in-depth review.

Lisa February 9, 2017 at 4:47 AM

Clickety click ;)

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