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Published by Loveswept on March 8th 2016
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Source: InkSlinger PR
New York Times bestselling author Violet Duke kicks off her sizzling-hot new Fourth Down series with a friends-to-lovers romance between a no-strings-attached sports analyst and the hottest damn tomboy he’s ever met.
It’s no secret that sports analyst Jackson Gray doesn’t do relationships. What is a secret, however, is the reason why. Jackson’s life is . . . complicated. And it doesn’t help that his current hands-off “friendship” is with the cute-as-hell new sideline reporter he’s assigned to train. Turns out, not only is the woman damn sweet, she also knows as much about football as he does. Like it or not though, Jackson has to remind himself that sex is the only thing he has to offer . . . until now.
Leila Hart’s fast-growing friendship with Jackson is something she’d never risk, no matter how unbelievably seductive the reward. Becoming an NFL sportscaster has always been the goal, and thanks to Jackson’s fierce support and mentoring, it all finally seems within reach. Problem is, a girl can only take so much of that sexy-as-sin voice whispering dirty, filthy football stats in her ear before she loses all self-control. A workplace romance with Jackson is a disaster waiting to happen, especially for someone with big dreams . . . and secrets of her own.
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At first glance, Jackson looked like any other ridiculously handsome former athlete. But the second glance was when it became obvious the man was complex, more than simply handsome.
He was deep.
Everything about him made you realize there was much more beneath the surface.
If you made it that far, that is. Leila didn’t blame a woman for getting lost in surface appearances for quite a while because good lord, what a surface it was.
He had a hard-to-miss All-American athletic build that almost couldn’t be contained in the swanky NFL-after-party-worthy sports jacket he was wearing. His locked and loaded guns for arms framed a spectacularly broad chest and carved abs his shirt had actually molded to for one particularly memorable few seconds. All in all, it was the sort of physique that very likely inspired the first ad campaign with male models lifting the hem of their T-shirts up like it was a perfectly normal occurrence.
And above his shoulders? Jesus. She would’ve pegged him as having been sculpted rather than born based on that etched jawline and the ruggedly sexy lines along the muscular column of his neck.
Meanwhile, his casual product-free ash brown hair was the unassuming variety you expected to find on the guy next door. The kind that looked like he’d just sprinted over from a jog on the beach and shoved his hand through it right before a candidly perfect black-and-white model photo shoot.
Really though, the most distracting of his long list of magnetic qualities was his ability to just stand there without feeling the need to say more than a few words. Never before would she have put “quiet” in the same category as “sexy.” But on this man, it so very much was.
His composed, confident presence was almost deafening. And if she had to hazard a guess, she’d estimate that those hypnotic hazel eyes of his, with that touch of buried sadness, could likely charm the panties off of an unsuspecting woman even at ten yards away.
Yowza. Make that twenty.
The dangerous weapons in question were now locked on her own eyes.
And if her body’s immediate reaction to that were any reliable warning, she wondered if she’d ever get any normal breathing done at work.
Honestly, if she weren’t so darn curious about this whole “Weatherman” nickname— which appeared fitting if Jackson had been able to predict the Viper’s two-touchdown win from position stats alone—Leila would already have made a heartfelt request to her new boss to pair her up with a mentor that was far less attractive.
Or at the least, someone who didn’t call her “sunshine.”
. . . In a low, darkly seductive rumble that didn’t belong in remotely the same category as mortal male voices.
Mentally, she braced herself when she felt him lean over, just a bit, to utter in a low voice only she could hear, “While I’d love nothing more than to stay right here and figure out what blush-inspiring thoughts you’ve been thinking about for the past few minutes, unfortunately, I have to get going.”
Before she could even attempt to contradict, or be offended by, the remark, he met her narrowed gaze with a searing hot promise, twined around a dare. “I’ll see you first thing in the morning, sunshine. Bright and early.” His eyes dropped down to her still-heated cheeks in a gentle caress. “We can discuss the Viper’s conference championship win that Lloyd mentioned,” he added quietly, as if knowing exactly which hot buttons to press to turn her imagination on. Literally and figuratively. “Only if you’re interested, that is.”
With his closeness affecting her ability to think about anything other than how good his voice sounded in her ear, she simply nodded, choosing to ignore how deeply her answer could get tangled in that broad net he’d just cast with that last statement.
Not that any sort of admission of her being “interested” could be any worse than the wildly imaginative, mildly panic-worthy daydream she was currently having.
Which starred him discussing football stats with her in that mesmerizing 1-900 voice of his.
Her knees buckled.
No judging. To each woman, her own version of dirty talk.
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