Author: Holly Schindler
Read Time: One Day
Rating (1-5): 5
Tag Words: Summer, romance, sports starts, cheating, passion, sex, basketball, challenging each other, compass, Minnesota, Missouri, death, tragedy, healing, family, trust, true love
Chelsea “Nitro” Keyes is out for the count. All her dreams, hopes and aspirations were fouled in just one jump shot.
Clint Morgan gave up life on the rink after a tragedy befalls him and tears out his heart, taking his passion along with it.
Neither thought they would be the same, no second chance, no ability to get back in the game, until they meet and they begin Playing Hurt.
I love Holly Schindler, she is a very good friend and has a voice that marks YA with beauty, tranquility, truth and deep, deep passion.
This is Shindler’s second book and it is a romance, quite a different genre from her debut, A Blue So Dark, but her sophomore triumph offers just as much passion, heart, soul and beautiful storytelling as her first.
Schindler is one of those authors who makes you want to be a better writer. I wish I could just take up a pen and have magic shoot it’s way out of the tip as Schindler seems to be able to. She always convinces me, always transports me, always opens up all of my senses so I can take in the lives of her characters as if they were my own. I love her for that. Reading Playing Hurt was a true escape, she let me be Chelsea, kiss Clint, know heartbreak, love rock’n’roll, go fishing and I can still hear the pulse of a waterfall hours after turning the final page.
This is one author I would watch closely; I for one cannot wait for book number three and I hope we will see the return of previous characters. I am so invested I want to know without a shadow of a doubt the fate that befalls Chelsea and Clint.
Notes on the Names:
I was so overcome by the choice of Aura in A Blue So Dark that nothing can really top it. :) I did like all the names, I thought, in the end, they all suited the characters. “Take it to the Keyes” is really cool!
I loved this paragraph, written from Chelsea’s perspective.
“Morgan, I think, sneaking a glance at Clint. Clint Morgan. It even sounds like the character in a romance novel. Or a soap opera. Clint Morgan, the rugged hero. Clint Morgan, the love-interest in the great cinematic American love story.”
Thoughts on the Cover:
I think the cover is great, clean, with a nice focal affect around the legs so you see a soft border, but I am surprised that the cover didn’t have a compass concept.
A Song for Clint:
A Song for Chelsea:
A Song for Gabe:
Parental Book Review *spoilers*
Whoa, baby! There is a LOT of sex/sexual desire. I think it may the only problem I have with Playing Hurt; it worked for the plot, but because of Clint and Chelsea’s unconfirmed relationship (at least in their minds, their hearts, like ours, are saying “You know you love each other, idiots!”) makes the sex a slight bit casual.
Clint punches his friend.
Clint’s girlfriend was killed in an auto-mobile accident.
Chelsea cheats on her boyfriend with Clint.