"#23 on the field, #1 in your heart"
I think this book is THE book that got me hooked on reading, really.. I could NOT put it down, even when I had tears in my eyes and my family was giving me weird looks for crying over a book. J. Sterling seriously messed with my emotions, I went on a roller coaster ride with this couple.
I seriously LOVED Cassie's 'rules':
"Rule number one: Don't Lie.
Two: Don't Cheat.
Three: Don't make promises you can't keep.
And Four: Don't say things you don't mean."
This book starts off with Cassie Andrews, a transfer photography major student, and her best friend/roommate Melissa going off to a frat party. First person Cassie sees at this party is Mr. Jack F'in Carter. Melissa fills Cassie in on his reputation: Star baseball player, a pitcher that will make it to the major leagues; but also the biggest man-whore who "Sleeps with girls and all their friends". Melissa makes Cassie promise that she will stay away from him, which she does. Jack sees Cassie and instantly tries to work his game on her, yet Cassie instantly rejects him and steers clear from him. She rejects him time after time, but Jack does not give up. Finally Cassie breaks down and allows him a date, in hopes of making him go away. This date turns out to not be what either expected. Both see a side of each other that not many see. Jack and Cassie have issues that they keep hidden behind a fascade they put on for the world, but slowly both allow each other to see through this. Jack was known to be a bad-boy but after meeting Cassie he begins to change his ways, to win her over because he realizes the deep feelings he has for her. Finally Cassie decides to put her walls down and allow herself to fall for Jack. We see how much Jack loves Cassie and vice-verse, but we also see just how protective Jack is and how insecure Cassie is of their relationship. We see the regular struggles that this couple face throughout the book. Then Jack is drafted into the major leagues, causing their relationship to turn into a long distance one. Cassie struggles with trusting Jack and letting him do his own thing. Then in one wrong, stupid, foolish move he breaks that trust and thus ending the relationship. And it KILLS both Jack and Cassie. I wanted to hate Jack so much for what he did, but I couldn't because I saw how much he, himself, was hurting over it and how he hated himself for betraying his "kitten". Jack tries all that he can to "prove" that he still loves Cassie, and that he deserves another chance. The time that they spend apart killed me, seeing Cassie struggle to live without Jack in her life, knowing what he did makes her not want to trust other men and to put up her walls once again. Some time passes where we don't know much about Jack, then out of the blue he appears ready to beg for forgiveness:
"Letting go of someone who owns your heart is hard. Sometimes
holding on to that person is even harder. I know I'm not the easiest
person to love, but you are.
It's not that I can't live without you; it's that I don't want to. There's
a difference. We all make choices in life and I choose you.
My heart belongs to you. And I'm not asking for it back, even if you
don't want it anymore. I'm just asking for the chance to have yours again.
I promise I'll be more careful with it this time.
This book has a happily ever after, but not after much heartache for both Jack and Cassie. I really recommend this book, but have some tissues on hand.. SERIOUSLY!!
There is a sequel to this book: "The Game Changer", review on that one up soon!!