The Player Next Door
Author: K.A. Tucker
Check it Out: Goodreads
Scarlet Reed has returned to Polson Falls, convinced that twelve years away is long enough to shed her humiliating childhood identity as the town harlot’s daughter. With a teaching job secured and an adorable fixer-upper to call home, things in her life are finally looking up.
That is, until she finds out that Shane Beckett lives next door.
Shane Beckett, the handsome and charismatic high school star quarterback who smashed her heart. The lying, cheating player who was supposed to be long gone, living the pro football dream and fooling women into thinking he’s Prince Charming. Shane Beckett, who is as attractive as ever and flashing his dimples at her as if he has done no wrong.
Scarlet makes it abundantly clear that old wounds have not been forgotten. Neighbors they may be, but friends they most certainly are not. She won’t allow herself to fall for the single father and firefighter again, no matter how many apologies he offers, how many times he rushes to her aid, or how hard he makes her heart pound.
But as she spends more time with him, she begins to fear that maybe she’s wrong. Maybe Shane has changed.
And maybe this time she’s the one playing herself—out of a chance at true happiness.
I’ve been so torn on how I feel about this book and my rating. This is my second book by Tucker and I liked this better than the other one, but not by much. I did like some things, but I did have a lot of problems with it. This was a second chance romance with a bit of enemies to lovers on the heroine’s part.
I had a hard time with our main character, Scarlet. She came off immature at times and it was a bit to get through. I get why she was mad at Shane, hell I would have been too. He did her pretty dirty in high school. But she really seemed like she wasn’t going to let it go and realize people can change in twelve years. Shane apologized for what he did in high school. Let me repeat: HIGH SCHOOL! He apologized multiple times and showed that he was interested. Every time she shot him down and brought up the past. It really got exhausting. She ended up becoming better, but it was a rough patch.
Shane was an alright love interest. Sometimes he would stoop to Scarlet’s level on the immaturity, but overall he was okay. He was a good dad and was genuinely interested in getting to know Scarlet again. There was some things he did that annoyed me that I can’t overlook though.
Once they got over their drama and became a couple, the book started looking up. They were literally like teenagers again and couldn’t keep their hands off each other. It was really cute to read about. I liked the way she fit into Shane and his son’s life and how they seemed to get each other.
As you can see I still have many feelings. While they were cute together, I can’t overlook everything else. If you’re a fan of the authors writing or the tropes, then give this a try. You might like this one better than me.