Spoiled brat….. Check.
Just when I think I have Tyler Owen’s all figured out; he knocks me on my ass, literally.
I wasn’t expecting him to help me up, or the little shock that I felt when we touched, but then I didn’t think I’d fall in love either.1st Time Love is a complete standalone novel with a happily ever after and no cheating.
A Review of 1st Time Love by Sapphire Knight
Get ready to fall in love with a real southern charmer with a deep heart and a fierce level of protection! In the first installment of her newest series, Dirty Down South, readers will quickly fall for the strength of character Tyler Owens brings to the pages. Although he initially comes across as the womanizing jock, his backstory is slowly revealed, offering a glimpse at a southern gentleman who is trying to work hard to make his dreams come true and still honor his parents. And Kadence Winters. Well, she is an interesting character who possesses strength, determination, and an independence wrapped up in a studious and nerdy book lover focused on school. As a reader I not only loved her personality, but I also related to her too.
What I loved about this initial book is that not only is it a sweet and innocent love story for two people coming of age—a bit of a YN to NA progression—but the level of backstory that is woven in sets the scene for the series as a whole. Sapphire Knight is setting readers up to follow an amazing family of brothers who love fiercely, protect what is theirs, and hold to the southern charm and hospitality they were raised to value. These characters are well developed and intriguing. And in true Sapphire fashion, there is a bit of a connection to one of her other series: her MC stories.
As the story gets going, readers are transported to the college life at University of Alabama where football is life. Mixing a bit of a sport theme with the young love story, Sapphire takes readers on a beautiful and innocent journey with Tyler and Kadence.
Tyler is not only an intelligent college student with a promising career in football and a reputation for the ladies, but he is a young man learning to navigate the reality of the stress of life without parents. He does, however, have two brothers who love and support him fiercely. (Readers will get a sneak peek at these two, setting readers up for a bit more to come with the next couple of installments—at least I hope that is what Sapphire Knight has in store for us.) Yet, when a bit of temptation literally runs into him, he can’t help but be pulled back a bit from the stresses to find a bit of fun with such a small package. But will Kandace be open to his playboy reputation and high profile persona? Or will this temptation turn into something that pulls him away from the dreams he has held?
Kadence is a shy book lover who would rather simply sport her t-shirts and jeans. She does not fit into the college life; instead, she is seeking solitude and stability out of the spotlight. For there is a bit of a secret Kadence has not shared with others. But when she literally runs into Tyler Owens, the Golden Boy of Alabama football, she can’t seem to fight the immediate electrical current that sparks an interest. Not the type she has been attracted to—especially with someone so publicly known—she tries to fight the feelings and brush him off. Tyler, however, is not willing to give up. There is something really unique about this woman, something honest and down-to-earth that pulls him in like no one else he has ever met. She is not the typical Barbie of the college scene. But is Kadence willing to open her life up to the spotlight that could threaten to expose the secret she keeps from others?
As things heat up, as the relationship becomes more public, and as the team prepares for the biggest game, secrets and personal demons from the past threaten to break these two. Will such young love prevail? Will dreams be sacrificed?
As much as I enjoyed this story and look forward to the rest of the series, I will say that I was hoping for a bit more angst and tension. Sapphire Knight has some moments in the storyline that could have moved this story in a bit of a darker or more mysterious and thrilling directions, but I was still satisfied with the tenderness that shone through. So reader who follow Knight’s work, just know this is a bit of a departure from the heavier subjects and stories we have come accustomed to. Instead, sit back and enjoy the coming of age story that combines my love of sports romance (football, in particular) with a lovely YA plot.
#SouthernCharmer #1stTimeLove #DirtyDownSouth