Book Review: Downed by Jen Frederick

Title: Downed (Gridiron #3)
Author: Jen Frederick @JenSFred
Reviewer: Michelle & Ivy @Michelle6803 @PoisonIvy70
Genre: Sports Romance
Length: 300 pages
Rating: 5 Stars



He’s the guy no one likes…

Despite winning two national championships, JR “Ace” Anderson was sent packing from his old school after losing the trust of his coach. At Southern U, he has a second chance to prove that his college legacy isn’t endless debauchery and selfishness. But his reputation precedes him, and his teammates offer a chilly welcome in the locker room. The one person who is willing to accept him is the very woman he should stay away from—his new coach’s daughter.

She’s the girl everyone loves…

Bryant Johnson’s only goal in life is to make others happy, even at her own expense. One look at her father’s new star quarterback, and she knows that Ace is her next project. With a reputation for being a “jerk whisperer”, Bryant has spent her last three years at college reforming sorry behavior and turning bad boys into the best boyfriends ever. In Ace, though, she’s met with surly resistance and a sizzling attraction she doesn’t expect. Fixing this wounded warrior will be her biggest challenge yet. Not falling for him will be even harder.

Between her big heart and his damaged one, a battle is ensuing. In this game of love, every defense will crumble.

M & I

Ivy: Ace is the a-hole you grow to love. When I think of this series, I think of the utter perfection of Knox and the sweetness of Matty. Ace…is not that kind of hero. I’m pretty sure that’s why he’s my favorite. He fucks up and he’s fucked up huge in his earlier appearance in Jockblocked, so much so that he ends up going to another school to try and salvage the last of his college football career. He’s the most successful QB that his own team didn’t want. That’s gotta do some damage to the psyche. And we see that, which I really did like. He’s a jackass, but at his core, he’s a decent guy who just isn’t the best socially. I can relate lol.

Michelle:  Ace, Ace, Ace.  Well I’m going to admit something here, I had to refresh my recollection of Ace via Ivy (thanks girlfriend).  Then when I started reading Downed, I remembered what an ahole he was in Jockblocked.  I’m a big believer in redemption, so Ace redeemed himself, although he felt he didn’t have any redeeming qualities.  That is until that Southern Belle Bryant turns his life upside down.

Ivy: Bryant is a great meddler. Now when I started this book I swear it took me a moment because I thought it had jumped a chapter. We’re right in Bryant’s head and um, Ace is right in her. Not a bad place to be, but it was a jolt to discover that their first time isn’t exactly fireworks galore. Again, I liked that it was different and really gave me the chance to see that Ace isn’t a bad guy AND that Bryant really needed to get out of her own head.  

Michelle: Well when the first chapter starts off with sexy times, you’re in for a good time right people?  I am with Ivy, I too had to take pause, but there’s a method to Bryant’s madness or rather meddling as Ivy said, but she took it one step further lol.  Bryant is a fixer and she feels it’s for the purposes of common good of football that she helps Ace out.

Ivy: I kept humming this song from Hello, Dolly! Called It takes a Woman

Mostly because I could see Bryant as this type of character. She’s the one who people connect to, charming and helpful and always trying to fix things. For example, Ace. She’s the girl who takes on “projects” like Ace, manly-boys who are jerks, users, womanizers and she tries to show them the right way to treat a woman. She gets way more than she bargained for with Ace.

Michelle: I couldn’t agree with you more Ivy.  Ace was that hole-in-the-wall that Bryant did not expect to happen, little did Ms. Bryant know, that Ace was kind of on to her and her shenanigans.

Ivy: Yep, when Ace decides that he has to get her attention and get her out of “fixing Ace” mode, their chemistry is off the charts hot. She shakes up his life, but he changes hers too and she’s not prepared for that.

Michelle:  Nope our Southern Belle was not ready for this Yankee to turn her life upside down and makes things just more interesting.

Ivy: Now considering how it started, you’d be surprised to realize that it’s actually a pretty slow paced, character-driven type of romance. That may or may not float everyone’s boats, but I am a devotee of the slow burn. Whether it be physical or emotional, when a romance takes its time to really build the characters individually while luring the reader in, I adore that. I think Bryant’s journey is just as strong as Ace’s and it really helped drive the narrative in a way that I closed my kindle with a smile on my face. Also, now I really want to start baking for some reason.

Michelle: Spot on Ivy.  Here I thought it was going to be loads of sexy times, but we get something much more than that, we get an actual story to leave you a bit emotional.  The slow burn did not bother me one bit and it made it even better so see their relationship grow and blossom before our eyes even though that’s the last thing Bryant wanted.  Yeah reading all the baked goodies made me hungry and wanting bake myself.  Hey Ivy noticed how we didn’t fight over Ace?  

Ivy: Ahem. Because he’s mine and you acknowledged it so….yeah, no fighting. 😉

The Bottom Line

Shorties-approved, Downed is a more emotional and yet still fun romance. We definitely enjoyed ourselves and hope you guys too!  

– Michelle & Ivy

*An ARC was received for an honest review.


Book 1, Sacked: Amazon USAmazon UK
Book 2, Jockblocked: Amazon USAmazon UK
Book 3, Downed: Amazon USAmazon UK


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