Review: Hail Mary by Nicola Rendell

Note: This ARC was provided by the author via Ardent PRose in exchange for an honest review.

Mary reaches out her hand and takes mine in hers, squeezing hard. 
My God. It's not just Annie that's happy. It's me too. To have her to come home to, that is happiness. That is safety. This is what I've needed. This was the empty place. 
Nothing fancy. Nothing crazy. Just her. This. Us.

Hail Mary should have been titled Holy Mary because on all things that are holy, there's a lot of sex in this book! Good sex. No, scratch that. Great sex. Non-gratuitous sex. And there was a lot of it. But you see, that's not what all this book was about, and the fact that it was a rather lengthy novel, don't think that ninety percent of it was all sex. I'm just saying that the sex was a definite highlight because the main characters--thirty-four-year-old Chicago Bears quarterback James "Jimmy" Falconi and thirty-year-old physical therapist Mary Monaghan--had this rocking chemistry from the moment Mary started punching Jimmy in the ring and he was trying to deal with his attraction to her. That's just the beginning of the story and my enjoyment never waned, leaving me smiling right till the end.

Jimmy Falconi is used to be recognized and fawned over by people he comes across on a daily basis, but then that's just part and parcel of being a sports superstar. When Mary Monaghan has no clue who he is and treats him like any other guy, Jimmy's pleasantly surprised. He's immediately drawn to her and the connection becomes mutual soon enough. They share one incredible night together, and they both want more. However, things begin to become complicated when Mary is brought in by the Chicago Bears to work as Jimmy's physical therapist. His past may have him pegged as a manwhore, but Mary seems to be willing to give Jimmy a chance to she he's reformed. If they were prepared to cross the line, taking care of a toddler is a whole new ballgame neither was prepared for.

This was indeed a romantic comedy but it's more than some romp that tosses in a few one-liners and a bit of sex and quotable love utterances from the characters. There's more to Mary and Jimmy than meets the eye and they were a joy to get to know in this standalone. I've encountered quite a number of books where one or both of the main characters have wrecked the experience for me, but not these two. They're hot when they're together, but they've got a lot of heart and they're complicated but I promise, they're more than worth the time and effort you'll put in reading their story. This didn't feel run-of-the-mill and I have to be honest here: Nicola Rendell surprised me. I've learned to temper my expectations with books like these. But Hail Mary is special. Like five-plus stars special. ♥

Date Read: 01 December 2016

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