Friday, April 10, 2015

Below The Belt (First to Fight, #1) by Jeanette Murray

Source:  Received a paperback copy in exchange for a fair and honest review.

There's more than one way to win in the debut of the First to Fight series…
Athletic trainer Marianne Cook is ready to do whatever it takes to turn the men of the Marine Corps boxing team into fighting machines. After all, her ultimate goal is to land a job training professional athletes. But when she notices a certain hard-bodied marine trying to hide an injury, Marianne realizes that she’ll have to use covert tactics to get him talking.

First Lieutenant Brad Costa has waited years for the chance to fight for a spot on the Marine Corps boxing team, knowing he has to push twice as hard to get half as far as his younger counterparts. Brad tries to downplay his injuries to the attractive trainer who has his dreams in her hands, but Marianne isn’t buying it. Maybe it’s time to deploy some targeted flattery.

As Brad and Marianne’s attraction turns red-hot, there’s more than one person having a hard time keeping their eyes on the prize…


Okay, the cover got my attention but the premise had me picking it up to read.   I really like sports mixed up with romance.  Then add a trainer and an athlete together?  Gotta love that.

This is my second book by this author and I was expected to like it and I did.  The characters make it.  Brad is a go it alone kinda guy and he's driven.  A little injury isn't going to stop him from his dreams.  But when the coach changes things up a bit, he's forced to look at the situation from more than just his own perspective and there's a hot trainer to take into account as well.

Marianne takes her job seriously and getting involved with one of her athletes is so not part of her plan.  Bad Marianne.  But who can resist the sexy Marine even if he's hiding his knee injury from her.  She just needs to try a different approach to get him to fess up.  Yeah, about that...

The story is adorable actually.  He's trying to hide his injury and she's trying to find it.  Makes for some fun times.  I love her mom's flirting and condom finding ways.  I, also, love the other secondary characters especially Higgs.  I was very excited to see he's getting his own book next.

There is this one sub-plot line that doesn't wrap up in this one.  I'm assuming as I read the blurb for book two that it's going to carry on with book two.  I hope so anyway.

If you enjoy the sport in romance kinda story and some good clean kinda sexy scenes, then this one is certainly a good one.



  1. I'm definitely curious about this one. Sports romances are usually a hit with me so I gotta check this one out. Great review!

  2. I loved Higgs too! Tressler and Marianne's mom gave me a lot of good laughs in this one. I agree this story was a fun and adorable read! Lovely review Val :)

  3. i would definitely pick this book up by it's cover alone! I love a good sports related read!! Glad you liked it!

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace