Wednesday, 14 October 2020

Bookish Thoughts: The Jock Row series by Sarah Ney (Jock Row, Jock Rule, Jock Road)



Book One - Jock Row

Description:
Scarlett is always the sensible one: The sober driver. The planner. The one holding your hair back while you're worshiping the porcelain gods.

Week-after-week, she visits Jock Row with her friends — the university's hottest party scene and breeding ground for student athletes. And if keeping her friends out of trouble, and guys out of their pants, was a sport, she'd be the star athlete.

Being a well known jock-blocker gets her noticed for all the wrong reasons; just like that, she's banned from Jock Row. NO GUY WANTS A GIRL AROUND WHO KEEPS THEIR JOCK FRIENDS FROM GETTING LAID.

"Rowdy" Wade is the hot shot short-stop for the university's baseball team — and the unlucky bastard who drew the short straw: keep little Miss Goody Two-Shoes out of the Baseball House.

But week-after-week Scarlett returns, determined to get inside.


My Thoughts:
For starters, the blurb is a little misleading: Scarlett isn't a "well known cockblocker", she accidentally cock-blocks once and effectively gets thrown out of the Baseball house on jock row and is banned from attending parties in future through fear of her clock-blocking. There's a difference, for Scarlett isn't really a cockblocker. She just doesn't have any patience for the lies dripping from the lips of jocks out to get laid... I liked Scarlett even though she could be salty as hell. I liked Rowdy (the guy whose task it is to keep her out the house) even though he was full of himself. I loved the back-and-forth between them. Reading their story was a whole load of fun and it was just what I needed, when I needed it, but it was so incredibly basic. I'm all for no drama for drama's sake in a book but you've got to give the reader something and this book doesn't really give much of anything. They are who they are, they spar, they're horny, they fall in love. That's all there is to it. Nothing more, nothing less. No character development, no depth, just what you see is what you get. 

Rowdy was a typical jock (baseball player) but not really a skirt-chasing manwhore. Scarlett was a virgin who wasn't "saving herself" for marriage but was just 21-years-old and had never been so inclined until she met the man-wonder that was Rowdy... 😏 Yeah, it was that kind of romance but whatever. It was fun, it was funny and it easy to keep turning the pages. 

Jock Row won't be winning any literary awards but if no-drama college romance is what you're looking for, look no further! Oh! But beware of the typos and poor editing... 

Book Two - Jock Rule

Description:
Kip Carmichael is no pretty boy.

He's a rough. Dirty. Giant. Hair so unruly, and a beard so thick, his friends on the team call him Sasquatch.

The first time Sasquatch lays eyes on Theodora "Teddy" Johnson across the keg at a party one night on Jock Row, she'd been relegated to the sidelines by her jock hungry "friends."

Week-after-week, he watches beautiful but bashful Teddy getting overshadowed, and overlooked. Sasquatch finally broad shoulders his way through the crowd, offering to to be her hairy godmother. But the minute their eyes meet? He's a goner.

Teaching her the RULES for winning a jock will be the easy part. Not falling in love with her is going to be a losing game.

My Thoughts:
Wait a minute... Didn't I just read this one? Only with a slightly different flavour? Oh wait! Yes! Yes, I did. Whereas Jock Row (book one) featured the Baseball house (and a baseball player), Jock Rule features the Rugby house (and a rugby player). 
The grumpy/salty and personable/friendly roles are gender-swapped in book two but we've still got the big-eyed virgin waiting for the right guy going on in Teddy and naturally Kip - who is avoiding entanglements due to keeping his super rich/trust fund baby reality a secret - just can't help himself but become her friend, her big hairy protector, and then more... 

I sound like I really didn't like the book but that's not a fair assessment. I liked it just fine. It was just super predictable and very samey. Would I have felt that way if I hadn't just read book one when starting this one? Maybe not, but I did so... Kinda hard to hide the rinse and repeat. 

On the plus side, I found Kip to be super funny in his bluntness and I liked how down-to-earth Teddy was. I liked Kip and Teddy together and I think they're good together. I'd have probably rated this higher than Jock Row if it weren't for how Teddy freaked out when Kip shaved and she realised he was actually attractive... I mean, the fuck? Pointless drama and extremely irritating but resolved fairly quickly which was appreciated. 

Book Three - Jock Road

Description:
EAT. SLEEP. FOOTBALL.

Those are Jackson Jennings, Jr’s three mantras . His entire life, he’s been a trained athlete with only one end-game: the Pro’s. No girls. No parties. No alcohol.

EAT. SLEEP. FOOTBALL.

Repeat.

Every Friday night, Triple J cruises the strip on campus, bored, lonely and conditioned not to party. But the night he meets Charlotte Edmonds on the side of the road, he wonders if his three mantras will ever be enough.

BIG. DUMB. JOCK.

Charlie has no time for Jackson’s antics. Not when he’s stealing her food or teases her to no end, making her tingle in all the right places. But if she’s ever going to have a boyfriend, she’d choose one who isn’t a Neanderthal. One with manners and actual time to spend with her. Not a hulking man-child who cruises the strip at night, in his Big. Dumb. Truck.

My Thoughts:
This series is my only real experience of Ney's writing (except for a co-authored book) so I have no idea if they're all the same story packaged up with different spices but it is most definitely the case the Jock Row series and honestly? Even though I still rate it around 3 stars, Jock Road was the worst. Mostly, this was because I found "triple J" cruising around in his truck every bit as stupid and pointless as Charlie does. Probably more so. I also wanted to nut him over the whole queue jumping/food nabbing thing... 

In this book, we visit the Football house! Jackson and Charlie are as salty and annoying as each other but they did make me laugh a fair bit. Unlike the others, it wasn't the girl that was the blushing virgin - it was Jackson! It's not very often in romance you read a book and the guy is the virgin so that was novel and definitely the books unique selling point. However, his reasons for keeping it in his pants were not... The book was fairly predictable, the characters harder to like than the others, and ultimately there are so many other college romance books that are better than this so call me underwhelmed. 

🌻

All in all, I'd say this series was completely underwhelming and badly needed editing as the number of typos is ridiculous. 
As college sporting romances go, there are so many series which are better but this wasn't the worst. 
The books are amusing, they're low on drama and definitely provide an opportunity to switch the brain off and exist somewhere else for a while... So if that sounds like just the ticket, then enjoy!


5 comments:

  1. I honestly don't think this series would be for me. I'm all for the no drama aspect but you are right, you have to have something, especially development and depth. Wonderfully honest review for these!

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  2. I have some friends who rave about this series but I've never really been drawn to it. Reading your reviews just kind of confirms that. New adult books often feel like the same story (and characters) over and over - kind of like this series.

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  3. Hmmmmm, I was thinking about trying the Jock Row audiobook from Hoopla, but seems like the series was just ok.

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  4. Jocks are definitely not my thing. But it does sound like this was just ok.

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  5. Aww, what a bummer. I'm sorry this wasn't a better series! I hate when I invest all that time and am just underwhelmed.

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