Release date: May 25, 2015
Party girl and standout wide receiver Jillian Bell sees no problem with her “no rules” lifestyle as long as she’s scoring on the field. But her sexy new offensive coordinator doesn’t see it that way.
Former marine turned successful restaurateur Carter Howl agreed to whip his father’s undisciplined women’s full-tackle football team into shape out of guilt. But the job comes with more trouble than he bargained for thanks to one spitfire of a wide receiver who challenges his every play.
When Jillian’s little sister begs her to come back to their small-minded hometown and be on her best behavior at a family event, she unexpectedly enlists prim and proper Carter to help her keep her cool. But two days and one pretend engagement later, this straight-laced former soldier is doing all sorts of things he normally wouldn’t. Is the wrong girl the right girl for him?
by Elley Arden
Elley Arden is a born and bred Pennsylvanian who drinks wine like it’s water (a slight exaggeration), prefers a night at the ballpark to a night on the town, and believes almond English toffee is the key to happiness. Find Elley Arden at www.elleyarden.com, on Facebook, and on Twitter @elleywrites.
An excerpt from Crossing Lines:
As the locker room emptied out, Jillian flew through her prepractice ritual, skipping the usual taping of her ankles and bopping around to Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.” Everything was going beautifully, until she reached inside her duffle bag for her cleats. They weren’t there.
“Shit!” Where could they be? The trunk. She’d tossed them back there after Saturday’s game because they were muddy. Without a second thought, she sprinted to her car, and by the time she made it to the field, it was 5:47.
Oh well, at least she hadn’t missed much. Her teammates were still huddled around Coach Howl. With any luck, her late arrival wouldn’t even be noticed. She sidled up to Tanya and tried to look like she’d always been standing there.
“If anyone can explain to me what went wrong on Saturday, I’d love to hear it,” Coach Howl said. But he didn’t wait for anyone to speak up. He kept right on railing them over the fifty-four to seven loss.
What a drag. Jillian tried to tune him out. Her eyes skipped to the unfamiliar man standing behind Coach. Daaaamn. That man was fine. Fairly young, too. Thick, blond hair. Bold, blue eyes. Rugged face. And biceps that looked like they lifted small cars instead of weights. That was the kind of man that drew you in like a tractor beam and made you lick your lips in case you were drooling.
The gorgeous man took a few fluid steps and stopped beside Coach Howl.
“Who is that?” Tanya asked.
“Thor.” Jillian said reverently. “And girl, I’d sell my soul to see his hammer.”
Coach raised a hand above his head, signaling for everyone to quiet down. “Coach Malloy is no longer with us.”
Wait! What? There were expressions of shock and murmurs all around her, but for once, Jillian was speechless. Coach Malloy was her “dude.” He’d said they were kindred spirits, because they worked beautifully together, even sang everything from rock classics to eighties music during team stretches. He didn’t rag on her for talking out of turn, showing off in the end zone, or running a little late. He was a blast, and when it came to football, they were on the exact same page. They’d made plans for this season. Big plans. They were going to prove a women’s football team could run a wicked West Coast offense. And yeah, so the first three games—all losses—didn’t have them off to a roaring start, but they still had time … or so she’d thought.
“You fired him?!” She lifted her chin when Coach Howl shot her a death stare.
“He resigned,” Coach said.
“Bullshit,” she coughed into her hand. Coach Malloy probably got the blame for the losses. It was no secret that this season, Coach Howl, who doubled as the running backs coach, wanted more emphasis on the running game.
Coach ignored her and moved on. “It’s never easy to change coaches in the middle of a season, which means we have a lot of work to do. There will be several adjustments to make. Namely, I’d like to introduce you to your…”
At that exact moment, she remembered Thor. Oh my God. It couldn’t be.
“… new offensive coordinator…”
“… and receivers coach …”
Which meant Thor was “in charge” of her. Hot or not, she wasn’t happy.
Jillian glance at her teammates to see how they were taking the news. Shocked faces all around.
“… Carter Howl, my son.”
Oh no he didn’t. Her head whipped around so fast she felt a sharp pain in her neck. Coach Howl replaced Coach Malloy with his son!