Friday, March 25, 2016

The Total Package by Stephanie Evanovich

Author: Stephanie Evanovich
Publisher: William Morrow
Date of publication: March 2016

Heartthrob star quarterback Tyson Palmer has it all: a million-dollar arm, a winning season and the promise of a Superbowl ring. But more importantly, football’s biggest star is the ultimate comeback kid. After an addiction to painkillers nearly derailed his career, Tyson got sober and went from zero to hero in the eyes of the public.

But one person remains unconvinced: Dani Carr, a sports commentator with high ratings and following of her own.
Dani can’t forgive Tyson’s transgressions or forget a single passionate night with him back in college. To make things worse, Tyson doesn’t realize that the bombshell with huge ratings is the cute co-ed whose heart he once broke.

But can a sports journalist trying to claw her way to the top and a quarterback who knows all about rock bottom make it to the Super Bowl without destroying each other? And what will happen when Tyson—riding high now that he’s revived his career—realizes he needs to make an even more important comeback with Dani? Can he use his million-dollar moves to get past her defenses—or will she sideline him for good?

I really like this author's first two books, so I was eager to get my hands on The Total Package. Wile it can be read as a stand alone, it does take place, partly, in the world of the first two books.  That means we get to see some old friends.  In this book, Tyson is at his lowest point in his life when her runs into Dani (Ella) at homecoming.  She has always regretted not hooking up with him in college and decides now is the time.  She also thinks she can save him in the process.  But like any addict, he can't see past the quick night with her and his next fix.  Meeting up again years later, Tyson is now clean and Dani has a secret.

I have kind of mixed feelings about this story.  While I did ultimately enjoy the book, I didn't love it as much as her first two books.  My most favorite part about The Total Package was Tyson.  I liked his journey to becoming clean and turning his life around.  I wish we could have seen more of his return to the football world and how he navigated that. But with the time jump ahead 5 years, it wasn't there. That was a little disappointing.  He was a great and humble character who didn't end up having a huge ego.  I found myself rooting for him.  I also did like Dani.  Normally, I'm not a fan of the "secret baby" story line, but I ended up agreeing with her reasons for keeping Brendan a secret.  Not being able to trust that Tyson was sincere about his change was pretty valid.

What I didn't ultimately love about the book was the relationship between Dani and Tyson.  For me they weren't really together enough to love their HEA.  That is what I loved about the first two books.  The main characters in those books spent a lot of time together in the story, so the reader gets to see the love really grow.  Dani and Tyson were barely together.  So, for me, this book was more about personal second chances and forgiveness than it was a love story.  Everyone deserves to start over and with hard work can make things right.  

In the end, I do recommend this book.  Ms. Evanovich has a talent for creating interesting characters that you can't help fall in love with.  I would recommend reading this one more for those characters and less for a love story.  You won't be sorry.

About Stephanie Evanovich

Stephanie Evanovich is a full-fledged Jersey girl who attended New York Conservatory for the Dramatic Arts, performed with several improvisational troupes, and acted in a few small-budget movies, all in preparation for the greatest job she ever had: raising her two sons. Now a full-time writer, she’s an avid sports fan who holds a black belt in tae kwon do.
Find out more about Stephanie at her website and connect with her on Facebook.

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Tuesday, March 15th: Sara’s Organized Chaos
Wednesday, March 16th: Books and Bindings
Wednesday, March 16th: A Soccer Mom’s Book Blog
Thursday, March 17th: Savvy Verse & Wit
Friday, March 18th: Walking With Nora
Monday, March 21st: Kritters Ramblings
Tuesday, March 22nd: FictionZeal
Wednesday, March 23rd: Reading Reality
Thursday, March 24th: Luxury Reading
Friday, March 25th: From the TBR Pile
Monday, March 28th: Sarah Reads Too Much
Tuesday, March 29th: Read-Love-Blog
Wednesday, March 30th: Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers
Wednesday, March 30th: Stephany Writes
Thursday, March 31st: Book Journey

1 comment:

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

Thanks for being a part of the tour.