Tag Archives: Kat Latham

Guest Author: Kat Latham on Rugby

Hi everyone! As you see we’ve got Kat Latham visiting with us today! She writes rugby romances, and if you haven’t read them, you’re missing out! But you don’t want to hear what I’ve got to say, right? 😉 So without further ado … Ms. Latham!

The hottest sport in America

Hi, everyone! Thank you so much to Lime for asking me to join you guys today.

For those of you who haven’t read my books, I write about rugby, which I think is the hottest sport in the world, but it’s not a sport I ever learned about when I was growing up in San Diego. Continue reading

TBR Challenge Review: Unwrapping Her Perfect Match by Kat Latham

Review: Unwrapping Her Perfect Match by Kat Latham
Contemporary romance novella released by Kat Latham on November 11, 2014

Unwrapping Her Perfect Match’Twas a week before Christmas, and at the auction house…

At six foot one, Gwen Chambers has felt like a giant her whole life. She’s a calm, capable nurse saving lives in a busy London hospital, but healthy men give her heart palpitations. When larger-than-life rugby player “Little” John Sheldon convinces her to bid on him in his team’s fundraising auction, she discovers how pleasurable heart palpitations can be.

A rugby player was stirring, with desire no one could douse…

John has wanted Gwen since he first saw her, but when he’s injured in a match just before Christmas he suddenly needs her too. Not only can the sexy nurse help him recover, but she might be able to help him look after his daughter—a shy ten-year-old who speaks only French.

But will it be a Happy Christmas for all, and for all a good night?

From decorating the Christmas tree to ice skating at the Tower of London, Gwen helps father and daughter open up and bond with each other—and she bonds right along with them. But when John’s agent calls with a life-changing offer, Gwen has to decide how far she’s willing to go for her perfect match. Will their first Noël also be their last?

I’ve been meaning to read Kat Latham’s books for a while now, and this was the perfect opportunity to crack one open. I love sports romances, and Unwrapping Her Perfect Match is a really great addition to that subgenre. I do want to note it’s a novella, so there will be a difference, I’m sure, from the novels, but there’s a lot packed in.

Gwen is a really normal person, and I loved that in a heroine. She could be you – or me – and her struggles are so basic, but real. I liked that she was a regular girl. Of course, as a heroine, she’s a lovely person, and does have some quirks. Gwen is tall – 6′ 1″, which I can’t imagine is fun for anyone who isn’t a supermodel. (And even for one such person not until she’s of an age to model…) Gwen also has some hang ups that she’s let shadow her life, just as any one of us might to, despite hers and our best efforts. I liked that Gwen was so relatable, and had a great “safety net.” It’s always nice to see a heroine with a loving and supportive family.

John is such a sweetheart. Any girl would be lucky to have him – but he also knows how lucky he is to have found Gwen. I love that he’s willing to admit his mistakes, see fault with himself, and put himself out there. When John screws up (and he does just as any person would) – not only does he own up to it, he tries to fix it. That is what makes him a great hero to me. The professional athlete aspect is just frosting. (Complete with perfect ginormous body.)

I don’t know much about rugby, but I enjoyed the little peeks into the game/clubs (teams?) we’re given in the story. It’s clear Ms. Latham knows the subject, and something of how the inner workings go. However, it was nice to see a little bit of both character’s careers. John is a professional rugby player, Gwen is an ER nurse, and both are respected. Everyone knows the flash and superstardom of athletes, but I liked that Gwen’s job was given a lot of gravitas, and that Gwen stands up for herself. In fact, in Unwrapping we see more of Gwen at work than John.

Even more, however, is the nice touch of John’s daughter Agnes, who I think is really the “fairy godmother” character of the story. Agnes unknowingly brings John and Gwen together. It was really fun to see so many sweet moments between the three of them, and I especially loved how Gwen connected with Agnes so easily and immediately. My French is about as good as John’s was, but I muddled along and actually liked the untranslated dialogue.

Lest you think this is “just” a sweet romance, there are a lot of sexy scenes with John and Gwen. I don’t want to give spoilers, but I wanted to note I loved how things didn’t always happen perfectly. John  and Gwen have sex, and have fun with it.

I appreciated that Unwrapping Her Perfect Match can be read as a stand alone story. (Which was especially nice since I haven’t read the other London Legends Rugby books yet.) I’ll definitely be reading more of Ms. Latham’s books, and if you’re looking for a nice holiday romance, I suggest you read this one. I read it in one go, and I bet you’ll be going to check the other London Legend’s books upon finishing.

Grade: B-

You can buy a copy here.

Kat Latham Discusses Sports Romances

YAY SPORTS! 😀 I totally didn’t plan this, but I love sports, and this makes me a happy girl. (Not planned meaning Sierra’s post on Saturday, and now this one. Cuz you know, there actually aren’t that many sports romances out there… And today we’re welcoming back the fabulous Kat Latham! Her debut book was released to the wild just this Monday!

She’s here to talk about romance novels that she loves. That deal with sports Double win.

Kat Latham’s Top Ten Eight Sports Romance Picks

Fit. Committed. Tough. Professional athletes make fantastic characters. No wonder sports romance novels are so popular with readers.

My love of sports romance started with Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ Chicago Stars series and it was sealed when I discovered Rachel Gibson’s Chinooks hockey team. Oh, the hawtness!

And I’m clearly not the only one who loves those series. I recently went on Goodreads and found a list of sports romances. Readers can vote for their favorite sports romances by putting them in a list.

I started to rank my ten favorites, but when I got to number eight I decided to leave the last two spaces free so I can discover new novels. So here are my top eight.

1. Crazy Thing Called Love by Molly O’Keefe
Dallas TV morning show host Madelyn Cornish is poised, perfect, and unflappable, from her glossy smile to her sleek professionalism. No one knows that her iron will guards a shattered heart and memories of a man she’s determined to lock out. Until that man shows up at a morning meeting like a bad dream: Billy Wilkins, sexy hockey superstar in a tailspin—still skating, still fighting, and still her ex-husband.

Now the producers want this poster child for bad behavior to undergo an on-air makeover, and Billy, who has nothing to lose, agrees to the project. It’s his only chance to get near Maddy again, and to fight for the right things this time around. He believes in the fire in Maddy’s whiskey eyes and the passion that ignites the air between them. This bad-boy heartbreaker wants a last shot to be redeemed by the only thing that matters: Maddy’s love.

2. See Jane Score by Rachel Gibson (Eee the kindle edition is only $3.79!)
THIS IS JANE: A little subdued. A little stubborn. A little tired of going out on blind dates with men who drive vans with sofas in the back, Jane Alcott is living the Single Girl existence in the big city. She is also leading a double life. By day, she’s a reporter covering the raucous Seattle Chinooks hockey team—especially their notorious goalie Luc Martineau. By night, she’s a writer, secretly creating the scandalous adventures of “Honey Pie”…the magazine series that has all the men talking.

SEE JANE SPAR: Luc has made his feelings about parasite reporters—and Jane—perfectly clear. But if he thinks he’s going to make her life a misery, he’d better think again.

SEE JANE ATTRACT: For as long as he can remember, Luc has been single minded about his career. The last thing he needs is a smart mouthed, pain in the backside, reporter digging into his past and getting in his way. But once the little reporter shed her black and gray clothes in favor of a sexy red dress, Luc sees that there is more to Jane than originally meets the eye.

Maybe it’s time to take a risk. Maybe it’s time to live out fantasies. Maybe it’s time to…. SEE JANE SCORE!

3. This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips (SEP) (Another of my favorites, and the kindle book is $4.99!)
Molly Somerville loves her career as the creator of the Daphne the Bunny children’s book series, but the rest of her life could use some improvement. She has a reputation for trouble that started even before she gave away her fifteen-million-dollar inheritance. Then there’s her long-term crush on the quarterback for the Chicago Stars football team her sister owns—that awful, gorgeous Kevin Tucker, a man who can’t even remember Molly’s name!

One night Kevin barges into Molly’s not-quite-perfect life and turns it upside down. Unfortunately, the Ferrari-driving riving, poodle-hating jock isn’t as shallow as she wishes he were, and she soon finds herself at a place called Wind Lake. Surrounded by paintbox cottages, including a charming old bed-and-breakfast, Molly and Kevin battle their attraction and each other as they face one of life’s most important lessons. Sometimes love hurts, sometimes it makes you mad as hell, and sometimes—if you’re lucky—it can heal in a most unexpected way.

4. Natural Born Charmer by SEP
Chicago Stars quarterback Dean Robillard is the luckiest man in the world: a bona-fide sports superstar and the pride of the NFL with a profitable side career as a buff billboard model for End Zone underwear. But life in the glory lane has started to pale, and Dean has set off on a cross-country trip to figure out what’s gone wrong. When he hits a lonely stretch of Colorado highway, he spies something that will shake up his gilded life in ways he can’t imagine. A young woman . . . dressed in a beaver suit.

Blue Bailey is on a mission to murder her ex. Or at least inflict serious damage. As for the beaver suit she’s wearing . . . Is it her fault that life keeps throwing her curveballs? Witness the expensive black sports car pulling up next to her on the highway and the Greek god stepping out of it.

Blue’s career as a portrait painter is the perfect job for someone who refuses to stay in one place for very long. She needs a ride, and America’s most famous football player has an imposing set of wheels. Now, all she has to do is keep him entertained, off guard, and fully clothed before he figures out exactly how desperate she is.

But Dean isn’t the brainless jock she imagines, and Blue—despite her petite stature—is just about the toughest woman Dean has ever met. They’re soon heading for his summer home where their already complicated lives and inconvenient attraction to each other will become entangled with a charismatic but aging rock star; a beautiful fifty-two-year-old woman trying to make peace with her rock and roll past; an eleven-year-old who desperately needs a family; and a bitter old woman who hates them all.

As the summer progresses, the wandering portrait artist and the charming football star play a high-stakes game, fighting themselves and each other for a chance to have it all.

5. Heaven, Texas by SEP (One of my most favorite romances of all time!)
Come heck or high water, Gracie Snow is determined to drag the legendary ex-jock Bobby Tom Denton back home to Heaven, Texas, to begin shooting his first motion picture. Despite his dazzling good looks and killer charm, Bobby Tom has reservations about being a movie star — and no plans to cooperate with a prim and bossy Ohio wallflower whom he can’t get off his mind or out of his life. Instead, the hell-raising playboy decides to make her over from plain Jane to Texas wildcat.

But nothing’s more dangerous than a wildcat with an angel’s heart in a town too small for a bad boy to hide. And all hell breaks loose when two unforgettable people discover love, laughter, passion — and a match that can only be made in Heaven.

6. Ride With Me by Ruthie Knox
When Lexie Marshall places an ad for a cycling companion, she hopes to find someone friendly and fun to cross the TransAmerica Trail with. Instead, she gets Tom Geiger—a lean, sexy loner whose bad attitude threatens to spoil the adventure she’s spent years planning.

Roped into the cycling equivalent of a blind date by his sister, Tom doesn’t want to ride with a chatty, go-by-the-map kind of woman, and he certainly doesn’t want to want her. Too bad the sight of Lexie with a bike between her thighs really turns his crank.

Even Tom’s stubborn determination to keep Lexie at a distance can’t stop a kiss from leading to endless nights of hotter-than-hot sex. But when the wild ride ends, where will they go next?

7. Slow Heat by Jill Shalvis
Baseball player Wade O’Riley’s bad-boy image is about to be cleaned up by publicist Samantha McNead. But the sexual tension between them is about to drive Wade to his knees.

(Seriously I tried looking everywhere for a back cover copy, and was absolutely unable to find it. 2010 when the book was released is about the time I hardlined only buying books in e-format, so I can’t even check. Like I did with See Jane Score.)

 

8. The Winning Season by Alison Packard
Kelly Maxwell has finally landed her dream job as publicist for the San Francisco Blaze. But the team’s newest member, handsome bad boy catcher Matt Scanlon, is refusing every interview. She’s got to get him to open up before the season ends, or she may not be back next year. And after everything she overcame to achieve her dream, Kelly’s not about to let that happen.

Matt Scanlon just wants to be left alone to rebuild his life and his career. After a year of masking the pain of a recent loss with hard partying and fast women, he finally hit rock bottom and was traded to a team he’s loathed his entire life—a team with little to no chance at the post-season.

Butting heads is getting Kelly and Matt nowhere but annoyed, and with the team’s schedule on the road, they can’t avoid close quarters—or their surprising attraction to one another. As the season winds down, Matt finds his growing feelings for Kelly have brought his numbed emotions back to life. But when betrayal shatters their fragile trust, winning it all seems more impossible than ever.

~*~*~*~*~*~

On Monday my debut novel Knowing the Score was released into the digital world, and I’m really hoping that readers love the rugby team I created, the London Legends, as much as I’ve loved SEP’s Chicago Stars and Rachel Gibson’s Chinooks hockey team.

This week on my blog I’m giving away London Legends T-shirts, bags and other cool stuff, as well as the latest contemporary romances by my fellow Carina Press authors. Visit my blog to enter the daily giveaways!

Knowing the Score by Kat Latham
Publication date: August 5, 2013

Knowing the ScoreBook one of the London Legends
Rugby player Spencer Bailey is determined to win a spot on England’s World Cup team. But with a month break before the selectors start watching him, he’s eager to have fun with a woman who knows the score: the relationship will end when rugby season begins. The lovely American Caitlyn Sweeney seems perfect for the role of temporary lover, since her visa will run out soon anyway.

Caitlyn works for an international disaster relief organization and can handle the world’s worst crises, but she flinches from her own. Her past has left her with a fear of intimacy so deep that she has trouble getting close to anyone—until she meets sexy Spencer. His hot body and easygoing nature are too much for even her to resist.

Neither Caitlyn nor Spencer expects to fall hard for each other. But with their relationship deadline approaching, the old rules of the game seem less important than before…until past secrets surface, challenging everything they thought they knew about each other.

Read chapter one

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What are your favorite sports romances? What books do you suggest I read and maybe add to my list?

And remember to congratulate Kat on her book release! Whee!

Teaser Tuesday Exclusive Excerpt Debut Novel: Knowing the Score by Kat Latham

You guys!!! It is flipping July!!! How did that even happen?!!? But as you see, Tuesdays are once again Tuesdays in ALBTALBS world. And as the second Tuesday of the month (meep!) we’ve got an exclusive excerpt, of course! Yay Kat Latham!!! (If you check out her page there’s something really cute. “Cover reveals” have become this big thing, but Kat made hers interactive, in the form of a jigsaw puzzle!)

Thank you so much for having me here today, Lime, and letting me share my excitement about my debut novel! Knowing the Score comes out on August 5, and I’d like to give away a digital copy to one of your readers.

Hope you enjoy the excerpt!

Knowing the Score by Kat Latham
Publication date: August 5, 2013

Knowing the ScoreBook one of the London Legends

Rugby player Spencer Bailey is determined to win a spot on England’s World Cup team. But with a month break before the selectors start watching him, he’s eager to have fun with a woman who knows the score: the relationship will end when rugby season begins. The lovely American Caitlyn Sweeney seems perfect for the role of temporary lover, since her visa will run out soon anyway.

Caitlyn works for an international disaster relief organization and can handle the world’s worst crises, but she flinches from her own. Her past has left her with a fear of intimacy so deep that she has trouble getting close to anyone—until she meets sexy Spencer. His hot body and easygoing nature are too much for even her to resist.

Neither Caitlyn nor Spencer expects to fall hard for each other. But with their relationship deadline approaching, the old rules of the game seem less important than before…until past secrets surface, challenging everything they thought they knew about each other.

Read an excerpt

Excerpt set-up: After a disastrous trip to Afghanistan, Caitlyn gets ill and her flatmate Emma calls Spencer to check up on her, since Emma’s heading out of town. Spencer brings Caitlyn back to his place.

~*~

She fell asleep with his deep breaths warming her ear and slept so deeply she didn’t stir when he woke up to watch the Gloucester match. She snoozed while he got ready for his meeting, and didn’t hear the door close behind him when he left. At some point, she opened her eyes to see a glass of water on the nightstand, next to a plate of plain crackers with a note folded in half like a tent, saying EAT ME.

Too exhausted to do more than smile, she snuggled deeper into his duvet and fell back into a restorative sleep, letting her body heal itself. By the time she felt his rough fingertips brushing her hair off her cheek, she’d begun to feel like a new person.

She gazed up at him dreamily before shifting her body into a long, stretching yawn. Rubbing her eyes as her aching muscles relaxed again, she asked, “What time is it?”

“Time for me to make good on my promise.”

She yawned again. Her body couldn’t seem to get enough oxygen. “What promise is that?”

“A nice hot bath. Ready for it?”

She nuzzled against his thigh, perched on the edge of the mattress, and was gratified to feel how naturally he let his hands fall across her body, stroking down her back and over her shoulders. “A bath sounds perfect. Every inch of me hurts.”

His fingers became more searching, running over her knotted muscles before patting her butt. “I’ll be right back, then. Drink some water.”

She pushed her fists into the bed and slid up until she propped herself against the headboard. She took shallow sips, letting her stomach reacquaint itself with liquid after having spent days violently expelling it like a foreign invader. A torrent of water fell into the bathtub in the other room as Spencer drew a bath for her. With a pang, she remembered the last time someone had taken such good care of her—when her mother had held her hair back as she’d vomited and rubbed her feverish back.

For nearly ten years, Caitlyn had had only herself to depend on. If she was too ill to make it to the medicine cupboard or sink for water, she did without. If she got sick when doing fieldwork, she’d have to muster all her strength to hoist her ass out of her cot and get herself to a clinic.

Spencer had apparently rushed to her side, despite how she’d treated him the last time they were together. Not only had he cared for her physically, but he’d found ways to comfort her as well.

He must be better than the men she was prone to be attracted to. After all these years of avoiding relationships because she’d come too close to falling for a man cut from the same shitty cloth as her father, it looked like she’d accidentally fallen for one of the good guys.

Thank God.

“Ready?” Spencer poked his head out of the bathroom and watched as she lowered her feet and carefully stood up. Wooziness rushed through her head, and she grabbed a bedpost. When she opened her eyes, Spencer stood next to her, forehead creased with concern. “You sure you’re all right?”

“Positive. Just haven’t stood up on my own for days.”

He threaded his arm through hers and escorted her to the bathroom as though they were promenading toward a punch bowl at a ball. He’d transformed the bathroom into a vision of heaven. Instead of harsh overhead lights—which would’ve made her eyeballs throb—he’d lit candles around the tub and along the sink. Lavender-scented bubbles reached the brim of the large bath. He’d even left the blinds open so she could gaze out over the Thames to the warehouses lining the other bank. “Hope you don’t mind,” he said. “Bubble baths aren’t usually my thing so I stole this stuff from your bathroom.”

She sighed with satisfaction, and he chuckled. “You’re not even in the bath yet.”

“It looks so good. I can’t wait.”

He nodded toward the sink. “I didn’t think you’d be coming back, so I threw out your toothbrush. New one, there.”

She cocked a brow. “That a hint?”

“Well, you are a little smelly.”

She couldn’t fault him for his honesty. Truthfully, she thought disgusting might be more accurate. She hadn’t shaved since the last time she’d been in this bathroom, several days ago, so her legs and underarms were raspy. Grease plastered her hair against her neck, and she didn’t need to glance in the mirror to know how tired her face looked.

As she brushed her teeth, she wished she’d opted for a pre-bath shower so she could clean herself properly before slipping into the tub to ease her aching muscles and mind.

Spencer rustled in the bag he’d brought from her place. He set her razor and Emma’s ginger body scrub on the edge of the bath and turned to her. “Let’s get you in this tub, then.”

“That’s all right. I’m feeling stronger. I don’t need any help.”

“Famous last words, Yankee Doodle. I don’t mean to be rude, but you look a wreck and I don’t want you slipping. Come on.” He held his hand out to her.

She gripped the front of her tank top, only now noticing how it seemed to reveal more than it covered. “Spencer, I’m dirty and gross and smelly.”

“So? I spend half my life dirty and gross and smelly. It doesn’t offend me. In fact, your grubbiness is one of the things I like best about you.”

Her heart fluttered at the strange compliment. “What do you mean?”

“Get in the tub and I’ll tell you.” He pulled her to stand in front of him. His hands made short work of her pajamas, leaving her bare and shivering as he helped her into the tub. “Cold?”

“No,” she said, looking straight into his hazel eyes.

His gaze warmed up. “Good.”

He clasped the hem of his shirt and drew it over his head, making her sit up so fast water sloshed over the sides. “What’re you doing?”

Tossing the shirt toward a hamper, he grinned and scratched his abs, drawing her gaze to the line of dark hair between his belly button and pants. “Getting in with you.”

Her breath quickened. She licked her lips as he flicked open the button of his pants. Desperate to distract herself, she said, “I’ve never done this before. Have you?”

“Taken a bath with someone?”

She nodded.

“All the time.” He lowered his zip.

“Oh.”

“’Course, it’s usually filled with ice and my teammates.”

“Oh.” She brightened.

“Other than that,” he said, shoving his pants down, “you’re my first.”

“Oh.” Her smile nearly covered her face as his boxer briefs hit the floor.

“But that’s not the kind of bath we’re having. You’re not well and I’m not going to take advantage of that.”

It was the first time she’d seen him naked in daylight, and he was magnificent. His thighs were thick and hard, and those very interesting parts of him began perking up between them.

“Hello,” he called out to her. “I’m up here.”

She tore her eyes away from his groin.

“I never thought I’d feel jealous of my own cock,” he muttered as he stepped into the bath.

She scooted forward and made room for him to slip in behind her. “Now you know how women feel about their breasts.”

“Hmm. I’ve never felt so objectified in my life.”

“Not even when you were greased up and holding a phallic rugby ball to sell underwear?” she teased.

“Hell no. Those adverts paid for this flat.”

He displaced a hell of a lot of water. It nearly sloshed over the sides, so she tried to stay still as he filled a cup with water and held it over her head. “Ready?”

She nodded, and he let it stream over her hair.

“Hmm.”

“What?” she asked.

“It just sort of slid off the top of your hair.”

Damn. She’d been afraid of that. People always complimented her hair, but that was because they never had to get too close to it. “You have to treat it like the rat’s nest it is. You can’t be gentle with hair like this, Spencer.”

He stilled behind her. “I’m afraid.”

“Don’t worry. I got this one covered.” She scooted forward to give herself enough room. Taking a deep breath, she leaned back and submerged herself. Holding the lip of the tub with one hand, she ran the other vigorously through her hair so the water could snake through the curls. When she pulled herself up with a gasp, she swiped water out of her eyes and glanced over her shoulder at Spencer. His face was tightly drawn, like maybe she’d stabbed a testicle.

“What happened? What did I do?” Her heart leaped to her throat.

“Nothing.” His tight voice shook.

“Spencer, don’t lie. Did I hurt you?”

He shook his head, as if trying to clear it. “That was…by far the most erotic thing I’ve ever felt.” He took a shuddering breath as her heartbeat slowed. “Your hair floating all around my cock—Christ.”

She licked her lips, her body suddenly feeling better than it had all week. “You want me to do it again?”

“No.” Poor man sounded like someone had slugged him. “I told you—not that kind of bath. You’re recovering, need your rest.” He scrubbed a tense hand over his face and spoke through his fingers. “I can control it.”

She grinned at his tortured expression.

“It’s not funny.” He hadn’t even glanced at her yet somehow knew she’d be amused.

“Maybe not funny,” she said. “But it still makes me feel good.”

He grunted and reached for a bottle of man shampoo, squeezing a dollop into the palm of his hand. “I need something to concentrate on. I’m afraid you’re going to smell a bit like me. I didn’t see any shampoo in your shower.”

“Emma and I share and she’s probably taken it with her, the selfish witch.” She sniffed the air. “Mmm, musky.”

“If the shampoo ads are to be believed, you’ll be beating the women off you with a stick.”

“I guess I’ll just have to hide out here for a while then, huh?” She turned her back toward him and took a deep breath full of contentment as his hands slid into her hair, his fingertips working in small circles against her taut scalp and temples. “Oh, wow. That feels…” She didn’t even have the strength to finish. The rhythmic motion had her mesmerized, her head swaying gently with the pressure, her eyes flickering closed.

He kept it up for several long minutes, one hand massaging her scalp while the other rubbed shampoo through her curls. She was barely aware of him tilting her head back into his hand so he could scoop up water and rinse the shampoo out. When that worked just as well as earlier—not at all—he nudged her hips forward and supported her until she lay back in the water, her head floating just above his lap. His hands combed through her curls, and he let out a groan of pure sexual need so loud she could hear it even with her ears underwater.

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So what did you think? 😀 And as you saw in the title, this is Kat’s debut novel!!! So show her some love! 🙂 And hey, being nice is rewarded here – one lucky commenter wins a copy of Knowing the Score!