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The Winning Season

The Winning Season - Alison Packard I absolutely adored The Winning Season. I'm a huge fan of sports romances but this book is more than that. Kelly is not your typical heroine. She's not petite and she has a potty mouth. Kelly has already gone toe to toe with Matt, so when he is traded to the Blaze, their relationship is already on shaky ground. Matt is a lifetime Dodgers fan but thanks to his antics off the diamond, the Dodgers traded him. Kelly isn't looking forward to working with Matt but she has to do what's best for the team. Now if only she can get Matt to stop insulting her long enough for him to cooperate.What I loved about The Winning Season is that we see Matt and Kelly fall in love. There's no instalove for them. A good portion of the story, Matt and Kelly are trading barbs and insulting each other. I loved it! Matt and Kelly slowly pushes aside the preconceived notions they have about each other and realizes that there's more than meets the eye.Of course, the inevitable conflict and story arc happens. Matt was a real asshole to Kelly and I felt that his apology wasn't enough. He harmed her, emotionally and physically. This is where I felt the ending was a bit rushed due to the violent nature of Matt's reaction to Kelly's supposed betrayal. There should have been less description, detail to the baseball game and more groveling and apologizing for Matt. I'm not a baseball fan so I skimmed most of that part and was disappointed that there was only a couple of pages dedicated to the reconciliation. I think if the book was 20 pages longer, I would have been more satisfied.Overall, The Winning Season is a great book. I love a strong heroine who is not bitchy. Sometimes authors mistake bitchiness for being strong. That doesn't happen in this book. Kelly is strong and likable. She stands up to Matt; doesn't take his shit. Matt, despite being an complete ass to Kelly, is likable in his own way. Once you learn what he's been through, you understand why he's such an ass. They are such a great couple. This book could have used an epilogue. I wanted to revisit them, a year later. Oh well.I highly recommend this book and Ms. Packard has been added to my auto buy list.