on April 1, 2016
Genres: College, New Adult, Friends to Lovers, Sports Romance
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From the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author, Haleigh Lovell, comes a sexy new standalone novel.
His best strokes can be found off the court.
Ender Hemsworth has been called many things:A Cock on Legs.Captain of Sigma Chi.Big man on campus.Star athlete at UC Berkeley.And he's always scowling like someone just took a piss in his Cheerios.
Adelaide Vikander has been called one thing: Twenty Types of Trouble.And she likes to take the proverbial ‘piss’ in Ender’s Cheerios.
When they’re forced to live together off campus, sparks fly and panties drop.Will Ender, the cold and unfeeling ‘Cock on Legs’ grow a torso, a head, and a warm, beating heart?
THE SLAM is a sexy and flirty New Adult Sports Romance that will make you laugh, make you wet, and warm your heart.
Please prepare yourself for some tomfoolery and debauchery. There were so many good quotes I have highlighted that I’ll be sharing and I promise that some are NSFW or any social gathering. That’s what makes them fun. Make sure you check over your shoulder and old aunt Betty isn’t reading this too. You’ve been warned, now let the games begin!
“If you ever disrespect her again, I will shove two hundred thermometer sticks up your ass and no amount of coconut oil will get ’em out. You hear me?”
I can’t remember a time when I’ve ever laughed or smiled so much while reading a book. The Slam is absolutely hilarious in an IDGAF type of way. It’s not zany or over the top, but completely refreshing. We experience the joys of pizza, going commando, navigating Tinder and a band of misfit friends trying to get Adelaide though the social scenes of college. I guarantee at least one of these conversations either has, or will take place in your life at one time or another. I’ve already counted a few that I’ve lived through, and seeing Adelaide experience them for the first time was absolutely top notch. Horror movies for instance, are the perfect example.
Midway through the movie, it was Adelaide—not me—who was increasingly annoyed.
“I don’t understand!” she hissed. “If they’re so spooked, why don’t they just leave the house and stay at a damn hotel?”
As the movie progressed, she got even more upset.
“NOOOOOoooooo!” she screamed. “Don’t run through that door!” Barely two seconds later, she was slapping her forehead. “That bitch did not just run through that door!”
Two minutes later…
“AW HELLLL NAW! DON’T GO BACK UPSTAIRS! RUN AWAY! RUN THE FUCK AWAY!”
Or what about experiencing your first college party? Ah now there’s an experience that’s a good time all around.
All of a sudden, a guy popped out of the bushes, wrapped only in an orange sheet.
“My metamorphosis is complete!” he yelled to no one in particular. “I am a beautiful butterfly!” Then he tossed the sheet to the ground, revealing the fact that he was completely naked underneath and ran off into the pink sunset.
As we picked our way through the throngs of people, we passed by two guys who were having a minor tussle over a giant burrito.
In all of about five seconds, Adelaide perfectly explained college and joining a fraternity/sorority. I think this sounds about right!
“I wanted to know what this Greek tradition was all about. And now I get it!” I said luminously. “It’s all a cover for getting wasted and laid with the help of a bunch of elite friends who you’ll contact years later for jobs and legal advice.”
Adelaide… Oh Adelaide. I think I’ve found my new best friend. First of all, her pep talk to the drunk guy was inspiring and cute. Adelaide has Aspergers and is on the high end of the autism spectrum. I didn’t know much about Aspergers before I started reading, so researched a bit and then let the book fill in the rest. Basically, she just sees and processes information differently than the rest of us. She’s extremely literal in both her information storage and delivery, and this is part of what made the book so much fun to read! She’s deadly honest and upfront, doesn’t quite understand sarcasm just wants to be herself without judgement. Think Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory, but not conceited and about 100x more awesome. That’s how cool Adelaide is.
“Pizza… you are the only love triangle I ever want.”
Ender is moody. He’s moody and passionate, loving and protective, loyal and compassionate. All throughout, Ender is a classic case of ‘actions speak louder than words’. He’s a major support system for our heroine – he doesn’t get in her way but helps to boost her up and work towards her goals. All around he’s a good guy, even if he is a little moody. I loved the chapters we got in his POV; it’s enjoyable seeing what’s happening in the hero’s head at different times. The lengths he went through to make Adelaide comfortable still make me smile. Oh and in the bedroom? He’s kind of dirty and I kind of love it.
“I’m gonna eat the fuck out of your pussy,” he whispered hoarsely.
God. That sounds terribly frightful.
Okay, in all honesty, that made me laugh WAY more than it should have but I just couldn’t stop. I’m still laughing. Back to outside the bedroom, he was a pretty sweet and caring guy.
“Adelaide.” I framed her face in my hands and kissed the frown on her lips. “I want to take you out on more dates.”
“I do.” I kissed her again. She tasted of seawater and adventure.
“Many, many, many more.” I held her gaze steadily. “I will never want to stop dating you.”
From what I could tell, the Aspergers was portrayed quite well. I understand that every case is different so there’s no certain way to know for sure, but to me it felt spot on. Adelaide stayed true to herself the entire length of the novel and I never noticed any lapses of character. I applaud this immensely because it couldn’t have been easy to try and keep up this style. It’s not what we’re normally use to but it was done really well. Haleigh also gave us an inside look at Adelaide’s brain; her fall backs and strengths, how she perceives herself in relation to others. I think this was quite eye opening.
“And sometimes the world can be an amazing place when you’re slightly strange.”
“She had eyes that saw the best in others and a heart that forgave the worst.”
Don’t get me wrong, this book had a lot of light and humorous moments, but it also did have some heavier ones, more thought provoking. It makes you think of how you perceive and treat others. On the outside, Adelaide looks completely normal. When in conversation, she may lack some social skills but unless anyone told you, you might think she was just awkward. Everyone in this world is fighting a battle; it is not up to others to judge, especially what they can’t see. There was one point that my heart absolutely broke for this poor girl. All she’s ever done is make the most of her life and view things positively. She’s caring and ambitious but sometimes people only notice what they want to.
But those words kept replaying in my mind: What the hell is wrong with you? “I don’t know,” I said in a pathetically weak voice. “A lot of things.”
The Slam doesn’t read as being super romancey. It’s more so rekindled friends helping each other out (in more ways than one, catch my drift? 😉 ). We watch as the friendship and attraction grow between Adelaide and Ender, until they realize they actually want more from each other. It’s slower and sizzling but worth it for their relationship together. You don’t get big cheesy displays of affection, or long soliloquies of their undying love and devotion. Just like everything else in the story, the reader sits back and watches as Adelaide moves at her own pace and figures it all out.
It’s also not super aggressive on the sports theme either. Yes the hero is a tennis player and the heroine had played in the past. Yes there are a few training sessions or conversations about the topic, but that’s about where it ends. This story is more to show the connection and development of the characters than to focus on the specific sport. Tennis is merely a way to help them connect once again.
This is the type of book that you read for pure entertainment and just because you love reading. It’s like the feeling you get when you kick your shoes off after a long day and grab a warm blanket – comforting and relaxing. While there were some openings for major drama, there wasn’t any. No huge misunderstandings, no blood shed during cat fights, it was all rather civil which I could appreciate in its context. The Slam makes you forget about your own life and experiences someone else’s for a few hours. It’s for when you don’t want to weigh yourself down with other people’s problems and just want to smile. To get those warm fuzzies and feel goods. Some of the scenes were a little unrealistic but I don’t even care. They were too well done and I was laughing too hard for me to be able to criticize it.
“Ender,” I said in a teasing voice. “Is this why you’re always such a boiled cabbage? Because you have daddy issues?” A bubble of laughter escaped me. “I’m sorry,” I said contritely. “It’s just that all along I’d assumed you were grumpy because you had Crohn’s disease or some sort of gastroenterological disorder.”
He frowned. “Why the fuck would you think I had a gastro disorder?”
“I just thought you were suffering from something that kept you constipated at all times… you know, because you had that perma-scowl on your face.” I smiled. “Like you do now.”
There were a few times where I found the transitions between scenes to be a little choppy. I’m not sure if a little more lead in could’ve helped, but I did find an area or two where they jumped from one spot to another. Each scene was fantastic, I just think they could’ve been smoothed out a little more.
The Slam reads quite quickly and I can guarantee you won’t want to put it down. The only reason it took me a few days to get through this is because life got in the way of my reading time… Stupid adulting. I could’ve easily done it all in one sitting.
There’s a few scenes that I can still days later recall perfectly and I’d be hard pressed to ever try and pick a favourite. All I can say it that you have to experience is for yourself. Laugh. Enjoy. Never take what you have for granted.
Can you tell that I liked this book? I have to rate this as 5 stars, I can’t see another way of doing it. Even with the small grievances that I had, Haleigh still managed to pull me back – I loved this way too much to give it any less than 5. The characters are magnetic, the writing is dynamic. This is not your average New Adult story, it’s better! Haleigh did an outstanding job of portraying a concept that’s rarely spoken about and makes it believable. Kudos to her, and I apologize in advance (not really) when I going to be demanding (nicely?) for more Adelaide and Ender. Cause you jump, I jump, right?
*An ARC was generously provided by the author and Enticing Journey Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.