Billy and Maddy grew up together in a bad neighborhood, and Billy’s loved her since they met. Even if he didn’t fight for her 14 years ago. Even if he’s never been quite whole since she divorced him. Even if the years since she left seem like a never-ending blur of brawling fights, squandered opportunities and unfulfilled expectations. When he’s traded to the Dallas Mavericks, it looks like his career may be truly over, especially after he ends the season in a spectacular brawl with his own team. But fate is a trickster. Maddy is in Dallas, and if there’s anything he regrets more than his ignominious career, it’s losing his wife. So when her morning show asks him to take part in a makeover series, he jumps at the chance. Spending time with Maddy is, well, maddening. Gone is the sweet, spontaneous girl he fell in love with, and in her place is a polished ice queen determined to keep him at arm’s length—and their shared past top secret. He’s not even sure he likes the woman, though there’s no question the chemistry between them is still red hot. But sex isn’t everything, and when the local station digs into Billy’s past and uncovers some surprising news, Billy and Maddy will both have to decide what’s important, what they’re willing to fight for, and who they really are. O’Keefe’s newest romance hits the high notes with a storyline that tugs on the heartstrings, maintains a sizzling degree of sexual tension, and plays on realistic, authentic conflicts that keep the audience emotionally invested from start to finish. Gripping storytelling and convincing character-building allow the story to unfold in the present and in the past, offering windows into the psyches of a damaged hero and his restyled first love.
An intense, heartwarming winner.