Title: Rush Me
Author: Allison Parr
Series: New York Leopards #1
Release Date: April 8, 2013
When post-grad Rachael Hamilton accidentally gate-crashes a pro-athlete party, she ends up face-to-face with Ryan Carter, the NFL’s most beloved quarterback.
While most girls would be thrilled to meet the attractive young millionaire, Rachael would rather spend time with books than at sporting events, and she has more important things to worry about than romance. Like her parents pressuring her to leave her unpaid publishing internship for law school.
But when Ryan’s rookie teammate attaches himself to Rachael, she ends up cohosting Friday-night dinners for half a dozen football players.
Over pancake brunches, charity galas and Alexander the Great, Rachael realizes all the judgments she’d made about Ryan are wrong. But how can a Midwestern Irish-Catholic jock with commitment problems and an artsy, gun-shy Jewish New Englander ever forge a partnership? Rachael must let down her barriers if she wants real love—even if that opens her up to pain that could send her back into her emotional shell forever.
Rush Me is a sweet, sassy new adult romance that will make your heart falter and fly. Ryan and Rachael’s New York City romance is passionate and witty, making for one heck of a rollercoaster ride. This couple fights hard and loves harder, their shared stubbornness and seemingly opposite worlds clashing in the perfect explosion of lust and attraction. They made me grimace and grin with each passing page and I found myself quickly falling under their spell. Rachael’s carefully guarded heart and Ryan’s public lifestyle made for plenty of drama and misunderstandings that ensured that Rush Me was full of feels. As my first novel by Allison Parr, I have to say, I am definitely a fan. Ryan and Rachael’s story was an utterly enchanting read and I can’t wait for more of this fun sports romance series.
“He tasted of champagne, sharp and bright, like new chances and fire and excitement.”
Ryan was absolutely swoon-worthy. Not only was he everything you’d expect from a football player BBF, but he was also intelligent, educated, unfailingly loyal and incredibly sweet. I would have liked to explore this character a bit more. I felt as if he was missing some necessary depth, specifically in regards to his seemingly cavalier attitude towards women and initial behavior with Rachael, not to mention why he was so against Rachael meeting his family. We never really got into the “tough stuff” with Ryan and it left my connection to the character limited. I did appreciate seeing him with his teammates. His solid friendships and protective nature was very revealing of Ryan early on in the story and as it progressed, I found those relationships to be seriously endearing. Overall, I adored getting to know Ryan over the course of the story and found myself quickly falling for his easy charm.
“God, how do people take your seriously?”
“Oh, it’s my charm and good looks. They don’t even hear what I’m saying.”
“You’re right. I’m so dazzled by your appearance I’m knocked senseless. Completely blown away.”
My feelings towards Rachael were very bipolar. On one hand she tended to be easily riled and overly dramatic, taking offense at the smallest things and jumping to conclusions in a way that came across as incredibly immature. I wanted to smack her and yell at her to stop being so self-sabotaging. On the other hand, I understood Rachael on a personal level. This character was incredibly genuine to her age and generation, struggling to find her place in the world and stand on her own two feet while needing to leave her mark in her own way. It was only natural that this character carefully guard her heart and refuse to accept help, but man did it make me (and Ryan) crazy at times. Despite her awkward attempts at establishing her identity, Rachael was smart, sarcastic, and relatable. So despite her best efforts to push everyone away, she slowly worked her way into my heart as the story progressed.
“It’s funny. How good we get at torturing the people we love the most.”
Rush Me was well-paced, only hitting a few slow spots and, for the most part, flowing easily. I thought the storyline was quirky, cute, and heartfelt – making this an incredibly enjoyable reading experience. I absolutely loved the colorful cast of secondary characters who rounded out this story. Ryan’s teammates and Rachael’s friends each brought humor and heart to the story in their own way and left me anxious for future books in the series. Finally, I have to applaud Allison Parr for her incredible writing. I was wholly captivated by the vibrant imagery, poetic prose, and smart dialogue that brought this novel to life. Allison’s words painted a beautiful picture that tugged at each of my emotions, making me feel every heartbreaking, hopeful, and hilariously awkward moment of this story. I will definitely be back for more of this artful author’s work, ready to devour the next novel in the New York Leopards series!
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Don’t miss the rest of the series:
Running Back (New York Leopards #2)
Imaginary Lines (New York Leopards #3)