The Right Player: A Sports Romance by bestselling author Kandi Steiner is now live!
From bestselling author Kandi Steiner comes a sexy, hilarious, opposites-attract sports romance set in the lively city of Chicago…
I have a three date rule — but it’s not what you think.
See, I’ve been told I’m the “good time girl,” not the one you take home to Mom. And
while that label stung at first, I’ve since embraced it — living the wild and
free life and sticking to a three date max. That’s just enough time to have
some fun and snuff out the possibility of catching feelings. And it’s been
working for me for years…
Until Makoa Kumaka.
Sadly, he also has a three date rule — and it’s the exact
opposite of mine. From the second I meet him, all I can think about is
stripping down that six-foot-five Herculean hunk of a man. But like the
gentleman I wish he wasn’t, he’s making me wait.
The more time we spend together, the more I feel those pesky emotions creeping in.
I’m even tempted to trust him, but blame it on my past or my instincts, I can’t
shake the feeling that he’s hiding something…
I’ve been playing the game forever, and no man has ever won my heart — which meant
they never had the power to break it.
But maybe I just hadn’t met the right player.
Maybe I’ll wish I never did.
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I burst through Gemma’s door at seven on the dot the next morning.
“We have a problem.”
Zach and Gemma were both in the kitchen, their hair a mess, sleep still in their eyes, Gemma mid-yawn while Zach hadn’t even poured the coffee grounds into the filter yet. He cocked a brow at Gemma, who managed a smile before leaning her hip against the kitchen counter and addressing me. “Well, good morning, Belle. Happy Saturday to you, too.”
“I know we agreed I couldn’t come over before ten on the weekends but this is an emergency,” I said, nudging Zach out of the way and taking over where he was in the coffee-making process. I’d barely slept, and if I didn’t get some caffeine in the next ten minutes, I’d become a monster. “Shoo.”
Zach chuckled, throwing his hands up and backing out of the kitchen.
“What’s the emergency?” Gemma asked, wrapping her arms around Zach’s waist when he joined her.
“He didn’t want to have sex with me.”
Their silence was my only answer, and I huffed, slamming the top of the coffee pot closed as I thrust the carafe under the faucet and turned it on.
“I’m confused,” Gemma finally said.
“HE DIDN’T WANT TO HAVE SEX WITH ME,” I repeated.
“Like, he’s not interested?”
“No, like, he had a thick, raging hard on threatening to break loose from his jeans but didn’t do anything about it.” I turned the faucet off with more aggression than necessary, slamming the carafe into place and flicking on the power switch. I crossed my arms and faced them when it started brewing. “He kissed me on the freaking cheek guys.”
Gemma chuckled, and Zach looked at her before he turned his confused expression on me. “That’s not an emergency. That’s not even a problem at all. That’s him being a gentleman.”
Gemma and I exchanged looks this time. “Please tell me you’re not on his side here.”
“I mean…” Gemma bit her lip, looking at her fiancé with a shrug. “That is kind of weird, nowadays anyway.”
Zach’s mouth popped open.
Gemma threw her hands up. “I mean, even we hooked up on our first date. Remember?”
Zach didn’t respond to that.
“Thank you,” I said, gesturing to Gemma before I let my hand fall to slap my thigh. “I mean, there we are, post-dinner and all talked out, and I’m running my hands all over his freaking tattoos. I start unbuttoning his shirt and he stops me.” I pause for dramatic effect. “The man stopped me from stripping him.”
“Maybe he’s really shy,” Gemma suggested.
“I don’t think that’s it. I mean, you saw him in the office. The man is confidence embodied.”
“True,” she agreed. “Oh, what if he’s into really freaky stuff? You know. Whips and chains, nipple clamps, all that. And he wants to ease you into it.”
I considered it, and I wasn’t mad at that possibility. “A Christian Gray, perhaps?”
“Could be! Did he have a room locked off that he wouldn’t let you go in?”
My shoulders sagged at that. “No, I saw his whole place. And the man brought everything he owns from California in maybe two-dozen boxes. I think he hired me because he lived like a college bachelor before now.” I shook my head. “I don’t think it’s because he’s so kinky he thinks he’ll scare me.”
“Maybe he just wants to get to know you before he has sex with you,” Zach said, deadpan, as if he couldn’t believe he even had to say that out loud.
I scoffed, crossing my arms again. “We talked all night. He knew me plenty well enough to bend me over his kitchen counter.” Then, all the blood drained from my face. “Oh my God, what if he has a micropenis?”
Gemma’s eyes shot open, and she covered her mouth. “No! You don’t honestly think?”
I shook my head, slumping against the counter once more. “Nah. I saw his bulge. No way was that a sock.”
We stood in silence for a bit, thinking.
“Maybe he has a weird shaped dick. Or a mole or something,” Gemma said.
“He wouldn’t let me take off his shirt. Maybe it’s a third nipple,” I guessed.
Gemma lit up like I’d told her her hair looked pretty. “Oh, that wouldn’t be so bad!”
“Maybe it’s the three date rule.”
I blinked a few times before I turned to look at Zach, confused. “Three date rule?”
“Yeah. You know… he doesn’t want to have sex until the third date. It’s like the classic dating handbook rule number one.”
I looked at Gemma, who tilted her head to the side as she considered it. “That does make sense.”
“So, you’re saying I’m not going to get any until he takes me out on two more dates?” I groaned, pulling three coffee cups from the cabinet and topping them all off. I handed one to each of them before wrapping my hands around mine. “Who on Earth still does that?”
“Nice guys. Good guys. Guys who are interested in more than just getting in your pants.” Zach shook his head. “Belle, come on. This is a good thing.”
“Tell that to my throbbing clitoris, Zach.”
Gemma nearly spit out her coffee, and Zach chuckled, throwing up his free hand in surrender. “And on that note, I’m going to watch Sports Center.” He kissed Gemma’s cheek before turning to me. “Good luck with your emergency.”
I wiggled my fingers in a goodbye to him, and Gemma and I shared a knowing smile once he was gone.
Kandi Steiner is a bestselling author and whiskey connoisseur living in Tampa, FL. Best known for writing “emotional rollercoaster” stories, she loves bringing flawed characters to life and writing about real, raw romance — in all its forms. No two Kandi Steiner books are the same, and if you’re a lover of angsty, emotional, and inspirational reads, she’s your gal.
An alumna of the University of Central Florida, Kandi graduated with a double major in Creative Writing and Advertising/PR with a minor in Women’s Studies. She started writing back in the 4th grade after reading the first Harry Potter installment. In 6th grade, she wrote and edited her own newspaper and distributed to her classmates. Eventually, the principal caught on and the newspaper was quickly halted, though Kandi tried fighting for her “freedom of press.” She took particular interest in writing romance after college, as she has always been a die hard hopeless romantic, and likes to highlight all the challenges of love as well as the triumphs.
When Kandi isn’t writing, you can find her reading books of all kinds, talking with her extremely vocal cat, and spending time with her friends and family. She enjoys live music, traveling, anything heavy in carbs, beach days, movie marathons, craft beer and sweet wine — not necessarily in that order.
Connect with Kandi
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/kandilandks/
Kandi has written the sweetest hero ever.
Makoa and Belle are totally opposites on so many levels but have so many things in common.
The one didn’t believe in love and the other hoped to find one someday. And still these two would find love in the way.
Belle is definitely not looking for a relationship. Her past proved that she wasn’t the woman to settle down with anyone and when she met a man who would prove her wrong, all bets were off.
Makoa has been burned in the past and has trust issues but was still believing in love.
The big guy is a softie, romantic at heart and willing to show Belle the real thing and to open her heart. It was up for a challenge but when the woman was still waiting for the other shoe to drop, he knew that they would face some obstacles in the way.
By finding their way to each other, they would learn from their assumptions and fears when it came to relationships. I appreciated that things weren’t that easy and how the main characters collided, showing how rules sometimes are made to be broken.
I adored Makoa and Belle as individuals and as a couple, full of sass, spirit, passionate and so darn sweet.
I wished some parts were less dragged out in the story. I had to admit that it frustrated me a little, especially about how Belle’s was seeing herself and denigrating because of what happened a few years ago. It was like she wasn’t accepting it and so in denial. Hopefully she has great friends that would show her how wrong she was for not taking that leap of faith.
However, the story was cute and fun with a strong hint of sweetness.