At a boxing gym in Chicago, Mary Monahan accidentally knocks out the most handsome man she’s ever met. After she wakes him up with a few slaps and some smelling salts, the very first thing he does is ask her out for ribs and beer. His name is Jimmy. He looks like a Gillette model. And he’s just too hunky to resist.
Jimmy “The Falcon” Falconi is mystified that Mary has absolutely no idea who he is. Mystified and refreshed. He is, after all, not your everyday NFL quarterback. He shops at Costco, has a soft spot for Pinterest, and is in the midst of an epic losing streak.
Jimmy falls for Mary fast and hard, the way he does everything—balls out and like it’s fourth and long. And he realizes he’s finally met his match. That stamina he’s so proud of? Doesn’t stand a chance against her Kegels.
But what they don’t know is she’s also his new physical therapist, recently hired by the Bears to work on his rotator cuff…and groin injury. If she can’t help him, he’ll be traded faster than they can say “offensive penetration.”
In spite of the thousands of internet memes featuring Jimmy’s face with captions like: “HEY GIRL, WANT TO TOUCH MY BALLS?” Mary finds herself falling for him and his unrelenting desire to make her his.
Until a toddler shows up at Jimmy’s door.
And throws their lives into total chaos.
To the reader: Contents includes love, sweetness, naughtiness, honey, champagne, and an HEA. Safe.
Nicola Rendell has been a gem of a find for me in 2016. I’ve devoured each of her books and fallen in love with her characters and her books are automatically added to my to be read list. Her latest, Hail Mary, had me sighing, swooning and laughing along with Jimmy, Mary and Frankie Knuckles.
I love a good football romance and this book definitely delivered. From the very first page this book takes off with a bang and doesn’t look back. We meet Jimmy and Mary in a boxing ring (even though the main sport in the book is football) and I LOVED that. I loved seeing a strong female right from the start and watching Jimmy fall hard for her, literally and figuratively.
Jimmy caught me surprise. I knew I was going to love him, but I didn’t know how quickly he’d rise in the ranks of my book boyfriends. I love a sexy, dirty talking quarterback as much as the next girl but Jimmy’s added sweetness had me swooning. I adored watching him interact with his niece. It can be tricky to have a child as a character but I think it was very well done here.
I want to be friends with Mary. She’s a no nonsense woman, who doesn’t want any drama in her life but she takes a chance on Jimmy. Watching her stand up to him and open herself up to him was just beautiful. This woman is nobody’s doormat (anymore) and she makes that very clear. She’s not your typical sports book heroine, hell she doesn’t know the rules at football at all, which was refreshing to me as a reader.
While there are some tense moments and some sweet/funny moments, there is definitely no shortage of sexy moments here. I definitely wanted to be Mary more than once as I was reading ;). The sex is hot and steamy and I wouldn’t want it any other way for these two. I’ve always liked honey…but this book made me like it just a little more. ;)
I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good romantic comedy full of heat and heart. You don’t have to be a sports fan to understand and love Hail Mary, but I loved the little references to my favorite quarterback in real life. Nicola Rendell certainly delivers a touchdown win with this book!
Nicola Rendell is rapidly becoming a favorite author of mine. She is an incredibly talented writer who brings characters, scenes and stories together flawlessly and they leave you wanting more of the character, hoping for a sequel and wishing the book was longer.
Hail Mary is the story of Jimmy and Mary, and I enjoyed the heck out of their meeting, the way she was tough enough to handle herself with him, and that he respected that about her. Definitely a hero worthy of a little swooning over. Put him in tight football pants, and well, let'sjust say I have watched a few football games in my life and still couldn't tell you any of the rules, but I have managed to enjoy the game...giving me a lot in common with Mary, who has no idea who Jimmy is when she meets him. Which let the reader and Mary get to know him together.
I thought the parts with his niece were really well done, but I wanted a little more depth in the resolution of that, and I would have liked to be more a part of that resolution as a reader instead of seeing it at the beginning and then again in the epilogue.
As always, the characters, the dialog and the pacing were well done. There were no points I felt disconnected with the characters because they acted in a way that seemed off or said something that no human being would ever actually say.
I recommend this book, as well as Nicola's other books...if you haven't read them.
Usually I devour a book in a day, two tops but Hail Mary, I savored it. I didn’t want to read as fast as I usually do because I just didn’t want to give Jimmy up. He wow, he is a dirty talking, sexy as hell, sweet, and a football player so extra hot for that alone. The sex scenes, they were intense, and at times messy. One word. Honey. Just I will never look at honey the same way again. I wanted to be the one his attention was set on. I not only melted when he was with his niece but my heart broke for her as well. For me, Jimmy is what made this book.
Mary, I have to be honest, I am on the fence about her. It is hinted at why she doesn’t like yelling or anger, but it is never fully explained about why she is that way. It bothered me that she thought Jimmy would never get upset about anything and especially when he is upset, which he had every right to be that mad, her weak attempts to say it was okay just made me not think she was worthy of Jimmy. I hate feeling that way about a character because I wanted to like her but I think I could have understood more if we knew more about her past.
Hail Mary was a hot and sexy read and while I may not have loved Mary, I did love Jimmy and would recommend Hail Mary to anyone looking for a new book to read.
With her hand in mine, I hail a cab on Fullerton. She isn’t saying much, and I like that. I like talking to her, getting dirty, watching her lose her words. Because I’ll tell you what, I’m planning on her losing a shitload more than that before I’m done with her. Losing everything to me. That’s the fucking plan.
The cabbie pulls off to the other side of the road a little way up from us and puts on his hazards to tell us he’s waiting. As we head for the crosswalk, I kick aside a drift from one of the plows, but it’s unsteady footing, icy and slick. As she begins to slip, her grip on my hand tightens.
“That’s enough of that,” I tell her, and scoop her up into my arms, newlywed-style.
She squeals and hangs on tight. She fits fucking perfectly in my arms, and I love the way she feels tight against me. Her fingers slip past my collar, and her fingernails dig gently into the back of my neck. “I can walk,” she says, mostly to my mouth. Then she raises her eyes. “It was just slippery.”
I don’t answer right away. I don’t want to come on too strong. I don’t want to scare her, but I don’t want there to be any fucking mistake at all about what I want or how I plan to get it. “I know you can. I’m sure you can do pretty much everything.”
Her eyes glisten, and I hoist her up a little higher in my arms. The walk signal starts flashing its hand as we get to the other curb. “I’m no shrinking violet.”
“Good. Because I’m going to need you to come strong for me tonight.”
Her body reacts before her face does, her back arching under my hand, that bend so delicate under my palm.
“Multiple times. Loudly.”
She presses her face to my chest and moans out what sounds like, “Who are you?”
“And you’re going to tell me what you like and how you like it. We’re not going to fuck around. Communication, pussycat. That’s the key.”
There go her words again. I’m getting to know that glaze in her eye, disoriented with desire. “And what about you?”
Now we’re even with the cab, but I’ve still got some things she needs to know. “I don’t come until you do. At least twice.”
She’s got no answer for that, so I bring her chin up toward me, stretching her pretty neck out with my thumb on her jaw. “You hear me?”
She nods. She breathes. She blinks.
“That’s how it’s going to go.”
“I think I can handle that.”
I laugh, sending a plume of steam out of my nose. This girl has no idea how badly I want her. How badly I need her. How fucking hard I am already to get inside her. “Yeah? You think so? You think you can handle me?”
Her eyes widen a little. “I think so,” she whispers.
Then I let her slip from my arms, such a fucking shame, but I’m not about to let her open her own door. As she gets into the cab—on the street side, the safe side—I say into her ear, “We’ll just see about that.”
A signed copy of Hail Mary and a $50 Sephora Gift Card
Open US only
Nicola Rendell writes dirty, funny, erotic romance. She likes a stiff drink and a well-frosted cake. She is at an unnamed Ivy and prefers to remain mostly anonymous for professional reasons. She has a PhD in English and an MFA in Creative Writing from schools that shall not be named here. She loves to cook, sew, and play the piano. She realizes that her hobbies might make her sound like an old lady and she’s totally okay with that. She lives with her husband and her dogs. She is from Taos, New Mexico.