Hands down By Mariana Zapata

hands down


official blurb

Before he was Big Texas, he was Zac the Snack Pack. Bianca Brannen knows time—mostly—heals all wounds. Including those your once loved ones might have unintentionally given you. (Those just take longer.) She thinks she’s ready when a call has her walking back into her old friend’s life. Or at least as prepared as possible to see the starting quarterback in the National Football Organization. Before the lights, the fans, and the millions, he’d been a skinny kid with a heart of gold. Waltzing out of Zac Travis’s life should be easy. Just as easy as he walked out of hers.

1.5 out of 5

🔥🔥🔥  out of 5 steam.

There’s one sex scene at the very end of the book that can be easily skipped. There is cursing in the book.

Let’s get into what I didn’t like about the book. Okay… It’s fairly obvious I liked almost nothing. But I read the WHOLE thing. Well I say that but like most MZ books, I skimmed a lot of inner dialogue. Bc her books desperately need editing.

Shall we talk nicknames yet? Bibi, little Texas, big Texas, snack pack, kiddo. That’s right…I ended on kiddo. Because Zac calls Bianca that the WHOLE book. I hated it. There was a bit of an age gap. But…no, I am not rooting for a couple who uses kiddo as a term of endearment.

I think she tried so hard to convince the reader of a friend’s to lovers romance that she went too far. They were literally throwing farts in each other’s faces. I wish I was joking about that.

Shall we touch base on inner monologue yet? I cannot….CANNOT… Get behind one person talking and then multiple pages of inner dialogue before the main character responds!!!! That is weird! Who would wait that long to respond in a conversation?! It doesn’t make any sense.

This isn’t going to win me any awards for bashing her dedication in the book. I know that. But seriously… I went into this book thinking her husband died while she was writing it. I actually almost DNFed it early on (I always go through this debate for MZ books bc….editing) but I felt a sense of loyalty to her to read it bc she wrote it during a time when her husband died. Why did I think that? Well, because the dedication is as follows: “To my greatest friend and teacher. The absolute love of my life. Dorian, this book and my whole life is dedicated to your memory.” Upon further research…Dorian is her dog. A great dane to be specific. Do I care that she dedicated the book to her dog? No, not really actually. Do I care that she phrased it in a way that made me think it was her husband? Yes!!! It bothered me the WHOLE time I was reading it!!

Last but not least- my least favorite plot device was used… communication issues. Bianca kept everything to herself. Zac would have to drag the smallest of answers out of her. For like 50% of the book. Finally somewhere around 67%ish they clear up the issues. And if you’re waiting for the couple from The Wall Of Winnipeg to show up (which is awesome!) you’ll have to wait until about 80% into the book. (And if you made it there, then you even saw a Lukov cameo around 64%!). What’s the premise of the communication issues, you ask? Basically Bianca was childhood friends with Zac and is upset with Zac about not keeping in touch with her. But she doesn’t tell him that… How hard is it to say that?! For a book that is literally 529 pages, I just did not like that being the driving plot point.

DuxSignature smallercopy

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