sidelinedRating: 5 stars
Buy Links: 
 Amazon | All Romance
Length: Novel

Quarterback Levi Brody is a private man who has a secret past he doesn’t talk about. Not even to his brother. Levi moved home after he was let go by the team due to a career-ending shoulder injury. Well, ran home to hide is more like it. He’s unsure what to do with his life, but right now the bottom of a bottle is looking pretty good. Living in the closet most of his life has become a way of life for Levi. When his brother pushes him to mentor the football team at his high school alma mater, Levi wants to say no even if it he knows it would be the best thing for him.

High school football coach Tracy Wright wasn’t prepared for the whirlwind that would be his new offensive assistant coach. In fact, he wasn’t happy about it at all. Levi Brody was sure to be the same self-indulged, egotistical prima donna he was in high school, in college, and in the NFL. But there was no way around it, Brody would be part of his coaching staff. When the first week of training camp passes without word from the infamous Brody, Tracy writes the addition to his team off. But a chance meeting in a bar changes everything.

Even drunk, there is something about the sad, tortured football star that calls to Tracy and he’s not ready to turn his back on it just yet. Starting a relationship isn’t in the cards for either man. Levi wants Tracy, but letting the man get to know the real Levi isn’t as easy as it would seem. Trust issues rise up on both sides. Tracy and Levi remain in the closet for different reasons. But when jealousies, accusations, and lies start flying, Tracy and Levi have to learn to trust one another before they lose it all.

Sidelined is the second book in the Southern Scrimage series by Mercy Celeste.

I love this book! I love it more than I loved the first. And I really loved the first. Mercy Celeste has a way with sexy men and football. And it’s not just the men. The story is engrossing from beginning to end. It’s real. It’s emotional. It’s full of tension. And it’s a wonderful, not very angsty story with a great storyline full of twists and turns to keep readers on their toes. As always, Celeste presents a flawlessly written story. It was a joy to read this story.

A master of characterization, Celeste has created two amazing characters in Levi and Tracy. I am absolutely head over heels for both men. I love strong men. And I have a weakness for two strong men together. So of course, Levi and Tracy are my current weakness. Tracy is a man who is not only strong physically, but in character. He is mostly well-balanced and happy with his life. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have his own issues. He’s judgmental and quick to jump to conclusions. Levi is one of my favorite characters of all time. He is a strong man with vast emotional issues. But he’s pulled himself up by the bootstraps and made something of himself, and his brother for that matter. He’s such a beautifully complex character. There is far more to him than meets the eye, but I refuse to give the twist away, because once you read it I’m sure you’ll love it too.

I enjoy the relationship between Levi and Tracy because it’s not perfect. From the beginning they fight against themselves and one another. It’s a constant tug of war, some game playing, and a boatload of trust issues. But the journey of their not-really-friends-with-benefits just sex to something more serious is engrossing. I loved every second of it.

As you can tell, I absolutely love Sidelined by Mercy Celeste. The characters are amazing. And the story is great. Celeste is one of my go-to authors and will remain so. I am always taken by surprise by one or more aspect in each book, this one is no different. I’m looking forward to the next book in the Southern Scrimage series, and I’m crossing my fingers for more Livy. I highly, highly recommend Sidelined.

crissy sig

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