Gorgeous, talented, and brilliant, NFL quarterback Ronan Smith has the world in his hands. But after losing his career and his fiancée in a car accident, he falls into a pit of grief and bad choices. When a mysterious girl shows up to his party, he feels drawn to her and makes her his…for one night.
Former beauty queen Nova Morgan is on a mission. Scantily clad as a princess from a galaxy far, far away, she sneaks into a high-profile party to capture the attention of her favorite quarterback. But her hopes crash after an awful one-night stand.
Fast-forward two years. Broke and desperate, Nova returns home to Blue Belle, Texas, where, by a cosmic twist of fate, her broody neighbor is none other than Ronan, the shiny new football coach everyone adores. But he has no idea who she is.
The booster club keeps shoving women at Ronan to keep him in town. His solution? He proposes fake dating to Nova. But things heat up for real under these Friday-night lights when he realizes she’s the one who slipped away.
Has this jaded beauty found her forever baller, or will his past keep them apart?
Title: Beauty and the Baller (Strangers in Love, #1)
Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills
Publication Date: March 29, 2022
Genres: Adult, Sports Romance, Contemporary
If you’re looking for a book about moving on from the past with a touch of sports and a whole lotta southern and romance, this book is for you!
I enjoyed getting to know Nova and Ronan as they figured out their present and future lives. They both had grief they had to confront and decisions about what their futures would look like. I thought this book dealt with both of those things really well.
There were a few side plots that I really loved. The whole lice epidemic thing was so funny. I laughed out loud each time it was brought out. And the side romances were so cute that I couldn’t help but smile every time a new couple got together.
Now onto my main complaint of the book. It was missing something. It was good and nice, but it was missing “the punch.” I’m not sure if that was in the romance, the plot, or maybe all of it, but I could feel its absence. It’s what made this book good instead of great.
Also, I know the synopsis talks about a Texas beauty queen, but that’s hardly ever, if ever, referenced. I think that was just a good way to market the book. I don’t know.
Overall, this book was nice and sweet. I appreciated the autism representation along with a few other realistic things that were discussed and included in the book.