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ARC Review: The Player & the Single Mom by Erin McCarthy

When friends-with-benefits turns into friends-with-a-baby-on-the-way…

It’s supposed to be just a no-strings attached fling with big, brooding, football player Cash Young. He is going to whisk me away for a week in the sunshine while my three kids spend time with their grandparents.

No one screaming, “Mom!” No tears. No absurd homework assignments or problems at the struggling bakery I own, Sugar Lips.

Nothing but cocktails and sexy fun for days with a man I’ll never fall in love with.

It’s not that Cash isn’t a great guy, because he totally is. But he’s way too young for me, and way too country boy calm, with that slow drawl, and his insistence on calling me “ma’am.” He thinks it’s respectful, which it’s not. It’s infuriating. And while we’re friends, we’ll never be anything more than that, with a little hot, headboard-banging sex on the side.

Until two pink lines change everything and Cash wants me to go from single mom to Mrs. Sera Young.

But the biggest surprise of all may be that the unexpected idea has a certain, sexy ring to it…


Sera is a harrowed single mom, juggling three kids in a cramped house while struggling to run her bakery. She was widowed at a young age, leaving her in a precarious financial situation with no way out. She’s dreamed of finishing her degree and dumping the bakery, but she’s resigned to a life of living hand-to-mouth to provide for her kids. There hasn’t been a man in her life for more than three years, since her husband’s death, but when her hot new friend Cash proposes a friends with benefits arrangement, Sera can’t say no.

She wants to say no. The whole thing is crazy. She’s not a sexy fling kind of woman and the hot young pro football player is out of her league. Or so she thinks. Cash disagrees. He’s wanted to get his hands on Sera since the moment they met and his interest has only grown with every interaction. He can’t get enough of this beautiful, independent woman, who also happens to be a fantastic mom and one of the strongest people he’s ever known. He’s in awe of her. But telling her any of that would scare her away, so he pretends this is all physical, just a fling.

They spend a hot week at a luxury resort and realize the life-changing consequences soon after. Sera has so much angst and understandably so. Cash is thrilled to become a dad but she worries he’s just doing the right thing and doesn’t really want to be with her. Cash knows Sera’s the only woman for him but he doesn’t know how to tell her because he’s pretty sure she’ll freak out and run away. These two are sweet, funny and hot. I loved these characters right away and Sera’s history drew me in. This is a fun HEA with a good supporting cast and I really enjoyed it. I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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