Sports Romance: Jaci Burton

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Our Favorite Sports Romances

I think it’s fair to say a lot of us love reading contemporary romances that center around sports, don’t we?  We have our favorite series/authors/sports and generally these books will leave you with a smile on your face.  NFL season is just getting started and maybe you’re feeling that itch to pick up a sports themed book wo we thought it would be great to pick author’s brains and ask them what’s THEIR favorite sports romances and maybe give you something new to read or simply a peak into their reading tastes.  This week it’s all about author recommendations here at Under the Covers and you’ll have daily opportunities to enter our week-long giveaway!

We are joined by one of our favorite sports romance authors today who is talking about her all-time favorite

Jaci’s pick

My favorite sports romance series has always been the Chicago Stars series by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. SEP was writing sports romance back when everyone was saying you couldn’t write about sports or athletes. Not only did she do it, she did it oh so well, and I’ve loved every book in this series. SEP is the reason I fell in love with sports romance and decided to write my own series.

Her Chicago Stars series is filled with characters you can’t help but fall in love with. Strong but honorable heroes and oh-so-sassy heroines.

My favorite book in this series is Nobody’s Baby But Mine. The heroine, Dr. Jane Darlington, is a physics professor in the market for a baby daddy, but since she’s always been made fun of for her intellect, she wants to be sure to find someone who’s not quite as smart as she is to balance out the smarts factor. So she chooses Cal Bonner, the quarterback of the Chicago Stars, thinking he’s a dumb jock. Only he’s not quite as dumb as Jane thinks he is. I absolutely love these two characters and this storyline and the way the two of them get together. It’s funny and romantic and emotional, and the heroine is smart and makes mistakes and the hero is vulnerable and sexy as can be and I love the way the two of them banter.

The key with SEP is sometimes her characters can come across as unlikeable, or do things a reader can think are unacceptable. But for me it keeps me reading, because she writes characters with flaws and I want to see how they’ll redeem themselves. What are they going to do next? What are they going to say next? And oh, how I love what they say, especially to each other.

Dialogue always gets me in a book, and SEP writes amazing dialogue for her characters. They argue and say the wrong things all the time, and it makes  me crazy, but at the same time I’m pulling for them to get it right because you know these characters belong together. Plus there’s just so much great tension between the characters you can’t wait for them to find their happily ever after. And when they do, you just sigh with happiness.

This entire series is on my keeper shelf. If you haven’t read the Chicago Stars series by Susan Elizabeth Phillips yet, you’ve missed out on some stellar writing and memorable characters. Be sure to check it out.



Available Now

[new-release title=”The Final Score” author=”Jaci Burton”]


About Jaci Burton

Jaci Burton is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling, award-winning author of over 50 books. She lives in Oklahoma and when she isn’t on deadline (which is often), she can usually be found wrestling with her uncooperative garden, wrangling her dogs, watching an unhealthy amount of television, or completely losing track of time reading a great book. She’s a total romantic and longs for the happily ever after in every story, which you’ll find in all her books.



Question of the Day:

What real life sports star would you like to see as a hero in your next read?

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Sue G.

Rob Gronkowski of the New England Patriots. I bet it would be a fun read!

Lenna Hendershott

Marcus Mariota, quarter-back for the Tennessee Titans and former Oregon Duck, is an awesome person and he’d make a great hero of any story. Oh and so is Joe Harrington. Can you tell I’m a huge UO Duck fan?

Chris Bails

Patrick Sharp. Tyler Seguin. Brad Marchand. Huge hockey fan, so someone from Hockey would be awesome.

Kathleen Bylsma

Great choice, Jaci! SEP rules, as do you and Amy Daws!

Amy R

Henrik Lundqvist. Love Jaci Burton & SEP.


I don’t follow sports so I don’t know names. One of the openly gay athletes would be great!


SEP is really good….j j watt, aaron rogers


Dez Bryant or Cam Newton! 😀

Anita H.

I’d love for Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins to be a hero for a hockey romance!Thanks for spotlighting Jaci, I love her Play-By_Play series!


I’d pick former San Jose Barracuda backup goalie Mantas Armalis! He was scouted as a model while playing hockey in Sweden, and did Versace runway shows for four years. I really wish they’d given him more time to get used to North American ice last year (sadly, the main goalie was having a career year, which made it worse)…when I saw him play, he really was excellent (got a shutout on my birthday)! I hope he gets a contract somewhere soon, not least because I’m one of those sick souls who insists he’s ten million times more dreamy in hockey… Read more »


Great choice of books, SEP is one of my first sports romance authors and a favorite. My choice would be hockey player Eddie Lack, He seems like such an awesome guy and funny to boot, perfect for a sports hero!


Kevin Kiermaier