Saturday, 7 February 2015

Review: Below the Belt (Worth the Fight #3) by Sidney Halston

Once one of the most sought-after names on the mixed martial arts circuit, Antonio “Scarface” Marino watched his career go down for the count as he chased skirts and made tabloid headlines. Now he’s finally making a comeback, and it’s all thanks to Francesca Silva, a Brazilian bombshell as tough as any of her fighters. But who’s the real Francesca: the trash-talking trainer who rides him hard, or the vulnerable woman who blushes at his touch?

Francesca went to the mat to sign Tony because she believes he still has the potential to bring big success to her gym—if she can keep his head in the cage and out of her personal life. After a short-lived marriage soured her on love, a one-night stand is all she can handle. Now Tony’s kisses are stirring up complicated feelings—especially when he agrees to face her ex in the ring. Francesca’s used to freezing guys out. But Tony’s tempting her to give in to the heat.

ebook, 288 pages
Expected publication: February 10th 2015 by Loveswept

Terri's Thoughts

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher Loveswept via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  The expected publication date is February 10th 2015.

Although the part of a series I was able to read this as a stand alone book.  While I am sure it would have enhanced the story by explaining some of the supporting characters it in no way impacted it negatively.
If you like your stories sexy and your men oversized and hot then this might be the story for you.  If you like a lot of steamy scenes in your reads then ditto.  If you enjoy alpha males who are domineering then yes again.

This story was typical of the genre focusing its storyline around the mixed martial arts competitors.  This is where Tony comes in.  I would really like to say he appealed to me but he just didn't.  The way he was described gave me the mental image of an older lumberjack when he was only 34.  I get the image that was supposed to be portrayed but it didn't work for me.  As an athlete I understand he was supposed to be large but I picture him as gargantuan. He does not resemble the cover model at all...shame because that is an image I wouldn't mind. Francesca on the other hand was the stronger character for me.  Her go get 'em attitude with her vulnerable interior made her more interesting and I was more invested I her story than Tony's. 

Those who do not enjoy bedroom scenes in their stories should stay away from this.  It was everywhere.  Pretty much opened and closed with it.  While this can be ok depending on the story I found it kind of boring.  Perhaps it was the way Tony would always talk about it with a potty mouth or maybe it was because he didn't mix up his bag of tricks. It turned me off how he was always talking about it like a hormonal teenager.  I think this is where I lost the connection with him. I also found the multiple "bedroom" scenes were pretty much all the same without much variation.  Tony loses points for creativity...but don't worry...Francesca didn't seem to mind.

I will be honest and say this wasn't my favorite of this genre.  While I was invested in one of the characters I couldn't help but picture the other as a cavemen so it was difficult for me.  It was a good escape from reality however I don't think it will make my top ten list.

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author, Sidney Halston lives her life with one simple rule: “Just Do It” Nike, and that’s exactly what she did. After working hard as an attorney, Sidney picked up a pen for the first time at thirty years old to begin her dream of writing. Having never written anything other than very exciting legal briefs, she found an outlet for her imaginative romantic side and wrote Seeing Red, among four other novels currently in the works, including the sequel to Seeing Red. That first pen stroke sealed the deal and she fell in love with writing.

Sidney lives in South Florida with her husband and children. She loves her family above all else, and reading follows a close second. When she’s not writing you can find her reading and reading and reading… She’s a reader first and a writer second.

When she’s not writing or reading her life is complete and utter chaos trying to balance family life with work, and writing (and reading). But she wouldn’t have it any other way.

Twitter:  sidneyhalston

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