Baseball star Will Vandergriff knows any number of women who would happily pretend to be his girlfriend. In a last-ditch effort to restore his good standing with his team’s higher-ups, he enlists the help of his neurotic, goody-goody neighbor.
Schoolteacher Olivia Pratt might be a bit quirky and a bit of a loner, but she’s a lot more inviting than she knows. Will hopes that bringing her to his next game might revamp his reckless reputation and help get his career back on track. The only problem? The plan works a little too well. Not only do the higher-ups love Olivia, but Will plays his best game yet. Suddenly his losing streak is a thing of the past, and Olivia is his new good-luck charm. Will feels anything but lucky.
After years of keeping the world at bay, Olivia Pratt is pulling off the ultimate performance—not only reluctantly posing as Will’s girlfriend but also insisting that she’s oblivious to his major-league appeal. But she can only lie to herself for so long. Being by Will’s side feels good. Really good. Maybe it’s finally time to make a pitch for everything she really wants—and to find out just how exhilarating love can be.
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Amy Matayo’s The Thirteenth Chance, could not be more perfectly timed. I am an autumn embracing, baseball-loving girl, so the World Series is definitely getting some air time in this household. You don’t have to be a baseball aficionado to enjoy this quirky love story, but you may find yourself with a hankering for Cracker Jack.
I have not identified with a protagonist as much as I did with Olivia in ages! Let me first account for the similarities:
- Schoolteacher? Check.
- Introvert? Check.
- OCD tendencies? Check.
- Name that rhymes with Olivia? Check.
Facetiousness aside, this was an absolutely delightful read full of laugh out loud moments courtesy of Matayo’s failsafe sense of humour and ability to craft a scene with the optimal potential for banter and chemistry. She weaves together a few favourite rom-com plot archetypes (girl next door, opposites attract, pretend dating), but still manages to create an engaging story that is fresh and hard to put down.
The Thirteenth Chance has everything a romcom lover is looking for: charming characters, entertaining fast-paced scenes, and a heartwarming plot. At the risk of sounding punny, this is another home run for Amy Matayo.
**Disclosure: I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.”