A surprisingly great read – full of sports action and a fabulous romance

Undefeated by Stuart Reardon and Jane Harvey-Berrick

I’m going to preface this review by saying that I did not intend on reading this book so early after its release. It has been crazily hyped thanks to co-author and cover model Stuart Reardon, and I didn’t want to read it just because “everyone else is”. However, when my Instagram account (along with a heap of other bookstagrammers) was tagged by the aforementioned Stuart asking if “we’d read Undefeated” and I entered into some cheeky banter with Stuart, I got convinced to buy and read the book. So here I am – I’ve read it and as the title to my review says, it was a surprisingly great read.

I’m going to get the things I wasn’t a fan of (and the reason this is a four star/heart read) out of the way first before I talk about all the things I loved. The book is written in third person POV and while I don’t mind this, the fact that the person who is telling the story chops and changes in chapters, in paragraphs and even to characters who aren’t one of the two leads, is a little confusion and frustrating at times. It did detract from the story on occasions but it didn’t make it unreadable. Also, I get that Stuart Reardon is famous but he is already on the cover and he has co-authored the book – to also have him appear as a character in the story – a rugby commentator – ends up making Stuart out to be a bit narcissistic, something that I hope he actually is not… And then there are the long, drawn out descriptions of a of handful rugby union matches that I will admit, I did skim over by the end of the book…

But in saying all of that, the story is not about Stuart… it’s about Nick Renshaw – an ageing and injured rugby union player who is down on his luck and needing some motivation and inspiration. Enter Dr Anna Scott, sports psychologist and all round fascinating woman. What ensues is a “forbidden doctor-patient romance” that has lots of drama, buckets of sexual tension and chemistry, and a storyline that will absolutely reel you in and have you wanting more. In the end, it’s the characters of Anna and Nick that I absolutely fell in love with – they alone are the reason this book is rated as highly as it is. Their characterisation, their personalities, their love story is fabulous. It’s what had me continuing to read despite the above frustrations, and what will have me one-clicking the next book because I’m curious as to where they will go next.

Stuart and Jane should both be congratulated on a fabulous sports romance that I will be recommending to others. I’m intrigued now by what they bring out next and while Stuart already had a fan in me, he hasn’t lost me by branching out into the world of writing – so hey, win-win 😀 Defeated is definitely worth adding to your TBR. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.

nicandbooks rating ❤️❤️❤️❤️
Amazon/Goodreads rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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