Hot Holiday Nights is book #10.5 in Jaci Burton’s Play-by-Play series. It’s a novella (hence the .5) and although it’s part of the series, it can be read out of order and as a standalone. This is also the first ménage story in the series, which I didn’t realize until after I had read a few chapters. As always, Burton’s writing is consistently good and I enjoyed this latest Play-by-Play book.
Victoria Baldwin is a sports agent who has appeared throughout Play-by-Play as a supporting character. She’s on Christmas vacation in Hawaii when she meets Alex, a professional surfer. It’s insta-lust and they hook up pretty quickly.
Alex is traveling with his best friend/manager, Ben, whom Victoria meets and also feels an instant attraction to, despite having an interest in Alex. Victoria is not the type of woman to freak out or run off when confronting her emotions. In fact, although she has just met both men, she admits her attraction to both of them.
She felt safe with them, which made her want to explore and see just what would happen with them.
Even though she’s never done something like this before, Victoria has been curious about ménage in the past. When she shares her desires with Alex and Ben, they’re all for it. They’ve actually shared women previously, which is convenient for Victoria (and much easier in the long run for everyone involved).
The sex is mind-blowing and everyone is happy. Initially, Victoria is looking at the physical relationship as a holiday fling and nothing more. Additionally, she’s based in New York, while Alex and Ben travel extensively for their jobs. So that makes it easier for her to see them as just a fling.
But the more that Victoria spends time with Alex and Ben, the more emotionally attached she becomes to both of them. Pretty soon, it becomes clear that the feeling is mutual. The three then have to decide if they can make their relationship work.
She did not get emotionally attached to men. She never had. Before now.
I think that the book could have worked well as a full-length novel, with room to develop the characters more deeply, but I still enjoyed the story. It’s also nice to venture away from the standard football or baseball players that are typically featured in the series. The plot is a bit rushed due to the shorter length of the novella, but Burton makes up for this with likable characters and super hot scenes.
I received an advance copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my review.