Throw Like a Girl
When softball star Liv Rodinsky throws one ill-advised punch during the most important game of the year, she loses her scholarship to her fancy private school, her boyfriend, and her teammates all in one fell swoop. With no other options, Liv is forced to transfer to the nearest public school, Northland, where she'll have to convince its coach she deserves a spot on the softball team, all while facing both her ex and the teammates of the girl she punched... Every. Single. Day.
Enter Grey, the injured star quarterback with amazing hair and a foolproof plan: if Liv joins the football team as his temporary replacement, he'll make sure she gets a spot on the softball team in the spring. But it will take more than just a flawless spiral for Liv to find acceptance in Northland's halls, and behind that charismatic smile, Grey may not be so perfect after all.
With well-drawn characters and a charming quarterback love interest who's got brains as well as brawn, Throw Like a Girl will have readers swooning from the very first page.
Once there, she finds that the softball coach is reluctant to consider her for the team, as she is concerned about her temper. She suggests that Liv play a fall sport and show her that she can be a team player. Liv is not particularly interested in any of the fall sports offerings, but she plans to do cross-country. However, when the school's quarterback sees her practicing/throwing balls with her younger brother, he knows that he needs to recruit her to play football.
Although Liv is reluctant at first, she eventually agrees when she sees that she may have a better chance of convincing the softball coach that she is team player. Once on the team, Liv is surprised to find out how much she likes playing. The only hurdle is that her parents do not particularly approve of football, so Liv decides to keep it a secret.
As she plays, she also can't help noticing how attractive the injured quarterback who recruited her is. As they spend more time together, she finds that she enjoys talking with him as well, finding a new friend in him and his crowd.
This was overall a charming story with plenty of sports and high school drama (keeping secrets from parents, dating drama). I really enjoyed it. It was an easy book to plow through, as it is super-enjoyable from start to finish with nary a dull moment. Liv, her friends, her family, and even the other football players are all super-well fleshed out, and I really loved meeting all these characters. I could definitely see them all as real people, and the characterizations were beautifully done. Her BFF is so wise, and her siblings were top-notch people who also stuck up for each other. Her parents have a lovely relationship and also care about their children a lot, but are also very reasonable. I adored them all.
The romance was also totally swoon-worthy (and clean), which is fantastic in a YA novel. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a contemporary YA read with some romance and sports elements. This is a sweet and charming read from start to finish with some truly incredible characters.