by Cora Carmack
Series: Rusk University #1
Published by: HarperCollins
Genres: Contemporary Romance
In Texas, two things are cherished above all else—football and gossip. My life has always been ruled by both. Dallas Cole loathes football. That's what happens when you spend your whole childhood coming in second to a sport. College is her time to step out of the bleachers, and put the playing field (and the players) in her past. But life doesn't always go as planned. As if going to the same college as her football star ex wasn’t bad enough, her father, a Texas high school coaching phenom, has decided to make the jump to college ball… as the new head coach at Rusk University. Dallas finds herself in the shadows of her father and football all over again. Carson McClain is determined to go from second-string quarterback to the starting line-up. He needs the scholarship and the future that football provides. But when a beautiful redhead literally falls into his life, his focus is more than tested. It's obliterated. Dallas doesn't know Carson is on the team. Carson doesn't know that Dallas is his new coach's daughter. And neither of them know how to walk away from the attraction they feel.
Sweet Romance- √ Low drama- √ Great characters √. Cora Carmack’s new Rusk University series begins with All Lined Up and you are going to want to add it to your TBR pile. Carmack delivers a refreshing new adult novel without the stereotypical characters we usually find. Instead, it offers two sweet, level-headed characters in a delightful coming of age tale with romantic moments to make you swoon and giggle.
The formula for new adult has been bad boys, wild nights and drama. Carmack brings the reader characters who take college seriously and it was delightful. They are focused on their dreams, and pleasing their parents. In the midst of finding themselves they find something more and it was a joy to watch it unfold.
Dallas Cole has grown up on football. Her single Dad is a coach and despite wanting to pursue dance in New York, she finds herself attending the college where her Dad is the new head coach. To make matters worse, her high school (ex)boyfriend is now the lead quarterback. When she reluctantly attends a fraternity party with her best friend, circumstances have her falling into the arms of Carson McCain. The two instantly connect, and the banter between them is delicious. Dallas is not ready for a relationship, especially with her Dad in such close proximity. Carson the second string quarterback needs to focus on school and the game. The two decide to be friends and the tale that unfolds is delightful.
All Lined Up offered a slow building romance that was heavy on sweet tender moments with just enough heat to curl your toes. The tale focuses on self-discovery, pushing yourself towards goals and mending parental relationships. There are a couple of side stories woven into the tale adding some realistic drama, and giving depth to the characters. I connected with both Dallas and Carson. Their relationship developed slowly with awkward moments, laughter and that dance we all love when the atmosphere crackles with attraction. We witness growth in the characters and get to cheer them. While college and football go hand and hand, do not shy away from this if football is not your thing. The book has powerful messages of inspiration, and the game is a backdrop to our characters.
All Lined Up was a refreshing tale and an easy transition for those who like young adult contemporaries, but have avoided the bad boys and drama ladened new adult genre. All Broke Down is the next book in this Texas set series and will release in October of 2014. In the back of the book Carmack talks about growing up in Texas, football and her Dad making the tale even sweeter.
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