Sunday, September 9, 2018

First and Ten: A Contemporary Reverse Harem A Team of Her Own Book 1: Preseason by Erin Hayes and Margo Bond Collins



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Excerpt 1:
The last time I had anything to do with football, Timothy Bartley threw the ball at me during PE, and it hit me in the face. I was left with a shiner for three weeks after that, barely able to see out of my poor eye. Everyone made fun of me, and I still sported a small scar on my eyebrow where my skin had split from the swelling.
That was in sixth grade. Seventeen years ago.
Since then, I hadn’t watched a game, hadn’t paid attention to who’s who, or even glanced at ESPN. That was fine by me. I was happy not having to spend my Saturdays watching the big game. My money was spent on video games, comics, and shoes instead of tickets and merchandise.
Football was in an entirely different universe that didn’t touch mine in the slightest.
Until now.
“Excuse me?” I asked in disbelief, sitting forward in my chair. My black business suit stretched as much as it possibly could, but it still felt tighter than the last time I wore it. Yet another sign that my size-14 waist was now a size 16. I’d put on some weight since my ex Jacob and I broke up six months ago. My boobs looked great though, so I really didn’t mind. He was the one missing out.
“Did you just say what I thought you did?” I asked.
My lawyer, an old family friend named Daniel Reiss, a balding man with a permanent scowl, stopped his reading of my late uncle’s will and looked up. “Which part?”
He must have continued reading while my mind slowly processed what had been bequeathed to me.
“The part about the football.”
He frowned, the wrinkles in his face deepening, and he flipped back a few pages in my uncle’s very long will.
Uncle Dusty had been eccentric when he was alive, amassing a huge fortune that had once covered a vacation home in Tahiti, several of the most expensive cars ever produced, a private jet, and millions of dollars in capital. But, being eccentric, he had spent or sold most of it before he died. Fair enough, I would have done the same. Most of the will consisted of what to do with his coin collection or each of his rare, exotic stamps.
But the part about football was, well, let’s just say unexpected.
Finding his place on the page, Daniel cleared his throat. “‘I leave my football team, the Birmingham Yellowhammers, to my brother’s daughter, Madison Harte.”
Madison Harte. Me.
I blinked. “Is that like a little kid’s team or something? Or his collection of footballs? Or a set of those shirts they wear?”
“Jerseys?” Daniel supplied.
“Yeah, those.”
“No.” He watched at me, perplexed. “They’re a team for the major league.”
I looked at him blankly.
“As in professional football, Ms. Harte.” Ugh. Daniel only used my last name when he thought I was being stupid. I should’ve been used to it by nowhe’d used it for the last several months as I refused offer after offer from Jacob to buy out my half of our tech startup, even as my savings dwindled. I finally took him up on it when I had no choice.
I hesitated for another beat, still trying to come to terms with Daniel’s words. “You’re not talking about soccer, are you?” At least I knew something about soccer. I played on a rec team when I was in college. Still terrible at it, but at least I knew some of the rules. Like, you couldn’t use your hands to touch the ball.
Daniel couldn’t hide the derision from his face. No matter how grumpy someone looks, they can always make you feel like the stupidest person in the room.
“No, Miss Harte. American football.”
I worried my bottom lip, a million thoughts running through my head. “Uhm, how can you leave someone a whole football team?”

None of this made any sense.


 When Madison Harte inherits a football team with three hot players who all want her, there’s one problem: when it comes to America’s favorite sport, she’s clueless. 

I have the worst luck. Failed tech startup? Check. Cheating ex-boyfriend? Check. No idea what to do next? Check.

Then my Uncle Dusty passes away and leaves a whole football team to me. Never mind that I’ve never even seen a game. Who has time for that, right?

But I can sell the team and turn my life around, so I fly from San Francisco to Birmingham, Alabama, where I find a whole new level of football obsession—and start to develop a fascination of my own. Mostly with the three players who are very, very interested in me. 

I never expected to find a team of my own. Or that there would be so many obstacles in our way.

Luckily, Madison won’t have to choose just one man in this contemporary reverse harem where Friday Night Lights and Bridget Jones collide and where—hallelujah—it’s still raining men.


Excerpt:

The last time I had anything to do with football, Timothy Bartley threw the ball at me during PE, and it hit me in the face. I was left with a shiner for three weeks after that, barely able to see out of my poor eye. Everyone made fun of me, and I still sported a small scar on my eyebrow where my skin had split from the swelling.

That was in sixth grade. Seventeen years ago.

Since then, I hadn’t watched a game, hadn’t paid attention to who’s who, or even glanced at ESPN. That was fine by me. I was happy not having to spend my Saturdays watching the big game. My money was spent on video games, comics, and shoes instead of tickets and merchandise.

Football was in an entirely different universe that didn’t touch mine in the slightest.

Until now.

“Excuse me?” I asked in disbelief, sitting forward in my chair. My black business suit stretched as much as it possibly could, but it still felt tighter than the last time I wore it. Yet another sign that my size-14 waist was now a size 16. I’d put on some weight since my ex Jacob and I broke up six months ago. My boobs looked great though, so I really didn’t mind. He was the one missing out.

“Did you just say what I thought you did?” I asked.

My lawyer, an old family friend named Daniel Reiss, a balding man with a permanent scowl, stopped his reading of my late uncle’s will and looked up. “Which part?”

He must have continued reading while my mind slowly processed what had been bequeathed to me.

“The part about the football.”

He frowned, the wrinkles in his face deepening, and he flipped back a few pages in my uncle’s very long will.

Uncle Dusty had been eccentric when he was alive, amassing a huge fortune that had once covered a vacation home in Tahiti, several of the most expensive cars ever produced, a private jet, and millions of dollars in capital. But, being eccentric, he had spent or sold most of it before he died. Fair enough, I would have done the same. Most of the will consisted of what to do with his coin collection or each of his rare, exotic stamps.

But the part about football was, well, let’s just say unexpected.

Finding his place on the page, Daniel cleared his throat. “‘I leave my football team, the Birmingham Yellowhammers, to my brother’s daughter, Madison Harte.”

Madison Harte. Me.

I blinked. “Is that like a little kid’s team or something? Or his collection of footballs? Or a set of those shirts they wear?”

“Jerseys?” Daniel supplied.

“Yeah, those.”

“No.” He watched at me, perplexed. “They’re a team for the major league.”

I looked at him blankly.

“As in professional football, Ms. Harte.” Ugh. Daniel only used my last name when he thought I was being stupid. I should’ve been used to it by nowhe’d used it for the last several months as I refused offer after offer from Jacob to buy out my half of our tech startup, even as my savings dwindled. I finally took him up on it when I had no choice.

I hesitated for another beat, still trying to come to terms with Daniel’s words. “You’re not talking about soccer, are you?” At least I knew something about soccer. I played on a rec team when I was in college. Still terrible at it, but at least I knew some of the rules. Like, you couldn’t use your hands to touch the ball.

Daniel couldn’t hide the derision from his face. No matter how grumpy someone looks, they can always make you feel like the stupidest person in the room.

“No, Miss Harte. American football.”

I worried my bottom lip, a million thoughts running through my head. “Uhm, how can you leave someone a whole football team?”

None of this made any sense.




About the Authors

Erin Hayes

Sci-fi junkie, video game nerd, and wannabe manga artist Erin Hayes writes a lot of things. Sometimes she writes books.

She works as an advertising copywriter by day, and she's an award-winning New York Times Bestselling Author by night. She has lived in New Zealand, Hawaii, Texas, Alabama, and now San Francisco with her husband, cat, and a growing collection of geek paraphernalia.
You can reach her at erinhayesbooks@gmail.com and she’ll be happy to chat. Especially if you want to debate Star Wars.

Read More from Erin





Margo Bond Collins

USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and New York Times bestselling author Margo Bond Collins is a former college English professor who, tired of explaining the difference between "hanged" and "hung," turned to writing romance novels instead. (Sometimes her heroines kill monsters, too.)



Read More from Margo


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First and Ten: A Contemporary Reverse Harem
A Team of Her Own Book 1: Preseason
by Erin Hayes and Margo Bond Collins
When Madison Harte inherits a football team with three hot players who all want her, there’s one problem: when it comes to America’s favorite sport, she’s clueless. I have the worst luck. Failed tech startup? Check. Cheating ex-boyfriend? Check. No idea what to do next? Check. Then my Uncle Dusty passes away and leaves a whole football team to me. Never mind that I’ve never even seen a game. Who has time for that, right? But I can sell the team and turn my life around, so I fly from San Francisco to Birmingham, Alabama, where I find a whole new level of football obsession—and start to develop a fascination of my own. Mostly with the three players who are very, very interested in me. I never expected to find a team of my own. Or that there would be so many obstacles in our way. Luckily, Madison won’t have to choose just one man in this contemporary reverse harem where Friday Night Lights and Bridget Jones collide and where—hallelujah—it’s still raining men. Excerpt: I was strong and capable and would get through this just fine. And if that had to be my mantra for the next few weeks while I worked out how to sell the team, so be it. I can do this. I can make it work. I ignored the voice in the back of my head that said, “And if you can’t, maybe you can just find someone else to help you out.” As I approached the rental car desk, the man working greeted me with a deep, soft, Southern accent, his vowels elongated and the A’s and I’s almost reversed. He checked the length of time I had arranged to rent the car “One of our long-term rentals,” he noted. “What are you in town for?” “Business,” I replied. “For a long time—maybe longer than I have the car rented for.” However long it took me to get the team ready to sell. He nodded. “If you need to extend the rental, you can do that online.” “Thanks.” “Roll Tide or War Eagle?” he asked, raising his eyebrows. Did that have something to do with extending the rental, too? “Pardon me?” He repeated himself, and I stared back at him blankly. “Alabama or Auburn?” he clarified, which wasn’t clarifying anything. “I don’t know what that means.” He rattled a plastic cup full of burgundy and orange flags. “I’m asking which team you go for. For a flag. For your car.” I had no idea what I would do with a flag for my car, or how I was supposed to answer. “I am so sorry, but I have no idea what you’re talking about,” I said. He spoke very slowly, as if to someone who had a serious mental deficiency. “Your flag shows your support for the football team of your choice.” Great. I was in one of the only states in the country where everyone had an opinion about football. Except maybe Texas. I had some vague idea that they might be as knowledgeable about football as people from Alabama. Then again, that might just have been because I knew Friday Night Lights was set there. Which I had never watched because it was about football. It suddenly occurred to me that I did have a football team that I could go for. “I go for the Birmingham Yellowhammers,” I said brightly. The rental agent shook his head sadly. But he reached under the counter and pulled out his small bucket of yellow flags. “Don’t get much call for these around here.” “But this is Birmingham.” “The Hammers suck.” Teaser2

About the Authors

Erin Hayes
Sci-fi junkie, video game nerd, and wannabe manga artist Erin Hayes writes a lot of things. Sometimes she writes books. She works as an advertising copywriter by day, and she's an award-winning New York Times Bestselling Author by night. She has lived in New Zealand, Hawaii, Texas, Alabama, and now San Francisco with her husband, cat, and a growing collection of geek paraphernalia. You can reach her at erinhayesbooks@gmail.com and she’ll be happy to chat. Especially if you want to debate Star Wars.
Read More from Erin
Margo Bond Collins
USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and New York Times bestselling author Margo Bond Collins is a former college English professor who, tired of explaining the difference between "hanged" and "hung," turned to writing romance novels instead. (Sometimes her heroines kill monsters, too.)
Read More from Margo