Tag: football

Book Review: The Rome of Fall, by Chad Alan Gibbs

the rome of fall
Image belongs to Borne Back Books.

Title:  The Rome of Fall
AuthorChad Alan Gibbs
Genre:  Fiction
Rating:  4 out of 5

Twenty years ago, Marcus Brinks left Rome, Alabama behind quickly, quietly, and mysteriously. The small town worshiped its football gods—back when Marcus was in high school, that was Deacon Cassburn—and allowed them to get away with anything short of murder, including bullying Marcus and his best friends, Silas and third-string quarterback Jackson. So Marcus and his friends decide to take down Deacon—state championship on the line or not.

Now Marcus is back in Rome to care for his dying mother. Things have changed in Rome…or have they? Marcus is a teacher and former indie rock star and Jackson is the football god/coach, while Deacon and his buddies plot to take him down. Things are ugly in Rome, and Marcus just wants to keep out of the drama and maybe have a bit of romance with his high school crush. But the past has a way of shaping the future, and even in Rome, it will catch up to you.

I’m not a football fan, but that didn’t stop me from enjoying every page of this. I graduated in ’95, so all the references the author made brought that back to life for me. I’m from Texas, so I get the Friday Night Lights hoopla—even though my high school didn’t have football until just a couple of years ago, the basketball coach back then could have gotten away with murder—and it was so vivid and realistic in The Rome of Fall.

Marcus isn’t entirely likable, but he’s relatable. The whole teen angst storyline in the ‘90s was vivid, angry, and full of pain. The present-day storyline was more nostalgic, but also angry and painful. I loved how everything resolved at the end, bringing Marcus full-circle and the reader hoping he finds happiness along with his dreams.

Chad Alan Gibbs is an award-winning author. The Rome of Fall is his newest novel.

(Galley courtesy of Borne Back Books in exchange for an honest review.)

Jackson’s Trust, by Violet Duke

jackson's trust
(I do not own this image. Image belongs to Loveswept.)

Violet Duke is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. Her newest novel, Jackson’s Trust, is the first in her Fourth Down Series.

Jackson Gray, sports analyst, doesn’t do relationships. Why is a secret. But when he’s assigned to train new sideline reporter Leila Hart, and they become friends, he starts to wonder if he can offer a woman more than a physical relationship.

Leila is finally close to realizing her dream of becoming an NFL sportscaster. With Jackson’s help, she’s well on her way, but as their friendship grows, so do the rumors. And Leila has some secrets of her own, secrets that could be the end of all she holds dear.

Jackson’s Trust features two strong characters struggling to reconcile their hopes and dreams with reality. The camaraderie they share as their relationship grows makes this book worth the read.

(Galley provided by Loveswept via NetGalley.)

I’m not even a football fan, and I enjoyed this book.