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Gaming for Keeps (Agents of TRAIT #1)
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Gaming for Keeps (Agents of TRAIT #1)

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  293 Ratings  ·  76 Reviews
Pen Holloway’s done with men—in real life.
Guys in game are so much less drama. But when her partner from Heroes of Fallen Gods invites her to the convention of the year, she panics. What if he’s another jerk? What if he’s not?

Cal Burrows is living his dream of being a spy.
One of TRAIT’s misfit spies, but still a spy. It’s the perfect job… until an arms dealer with a tast
ebook, 112 pages
Published June 10th 2013 by Entangled: Ignite
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3.5 stars!

So this was a pretty cute little romp. I think the main thing keeping it from rating higher is that I have come to expect more from novellas (blame T.S. Joyce and Alexa Riley). I find that I really like the novellas where there is intense insta-lust and insta-love and declarations of undying love -- and definitive HEA's. The story in this book takes place over a one-week period of time, mostly just one weekend at a Con Convention. I think people who know a lot about gaming (of which, I
Feb 25, 2015 Dee rated it liked it
More like 3.5 - the mystery/suspense part was resolved too quick
May 07, 2013 Julie-anne rated it it was amazing
Pen gets an invite to ConDamned from an online gaming friends/flirting partner and agrees to go and meet up with him. Cal plans on going to ConDamned but gets roped into working when an arms dealer is discovered to be there. They bump into one another and sparks fly, they fuck, there's a misunderstanding and then there's an arms dealer trying to ruin a screening.

Yet another great book by my very awesome friend, Seleste. I swear the woman can't write a bad sex scene ..... and I suppose the other
There is a lot to love about this fast romp. If you love nerd heros and heroines, this is the book for you. The leads meet on line in a video game and then plan to meet at a fantasy/gaming convention in person. The hero has a career he can't reveal and the heroine is coming off a bad break up with a fellow member of her game guild.

These parts of their characters were well developed. The hero suffers from what I call beauty burden. He is very good looking and he tends to attract much more conven
Britt Marczak
Apr 30, 2013 Britt Marczak rated it it was amazing
I have SO much love for this novella! MMORPGs, geeky conventions, full on Firefly discussions and quotes...I'm in nerd heaven right now, and I don't want to leave. On top of that, spies and secret missions? SOLD!

This is a book you DON'T want to miss!
May 17, 2013 Nicole rated it it was amazing
Shelves: e-book
Any time I am asked (or when I do the asking) to review a book, I somehow feel that I need to spend more time on my write-up than I do when I review a book for fun. That is the case with my latest review. I finished reading Seleste deLaney’s GAMING FOR KEEPS a couple of days ago, and instead of jumping into the review with the enthusiasm fresh from reading the book, I decided to sleep on it.

The next day, my enthusiasm hadn’t changed. I figured maybe I still needed more perspective, and gave it a
Jun 07, 2013 Marlene rated it really liked it
Originally published at Reading Reality

For a gamer and sci-fi geek, reading Gaming for Keeps was sort of like reading crack. I loved the in-jokes and con jokes. The whole idea of a science fiction convention romance was a trip down memory lane, and then to add on the whole spy game gone bad on top of the romance was just sheer bliss.

Games are the black holes into which weekends fall. It’s true for a lot of real-life gamers, and it’s also true for Pen (short for Penelope) Holloway. She’s been spe
Mandi Schreiner
Pen Holloway is tired of dating, as her last boyfriend turned out to be a big jerk. She is a huge gamer, obsessed with playing the online computer video game, Heroes of Fallen Gods. It was there she met her previous boyfriend, so when another fellow player who goes by the online name, Lohonas, invites her to a gaming convention, Pen is unsure. She kind of feels like her and Lohonas have a nice flirtation going on, and she isn’t sure she is ready to meet him in person. But as this convention exci ...more
Nov 14, 2013 Lexie rated it really liked it
Enjoyable romance for The Guild crowd--somewhat light on the world building (why yes that's a tad ironic), but it was enjoyable and a very fast read.


I have to admit, the idea that one of the people I game with would turn out to not only be the best gaming partner, but also that charming and attractive in real life? Total fantasy of mine. Mind you I don't do MMORPG's (Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games for those who don't know), but a lot of games are now MMO's without being RPGs as
Jun 06, 2013 Helena rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance-nerdy
I need to start this review out by saying this: I am a total nerd. Completely. This book immediately drew my attention because of that. I actually met my husband off an MMO, so the idea of this story completely drew me in. The author did a GREAT job keeping in line with the MMO aspect as well as all the other nerdy quips. Firefly, Dr Who, and Lord of the Rings all referenced in a book? Yeah, that's a book for me.

My only regret is that the book is so short! I wanted it to go on a little more, but
Alpha Possessive Heroes
Refreshing read!

I'm a gamer and when I found out this is set in the online game, I was quite ecstatic!

Gaming for Keeps is a short story so I'm not emotionally invested in it but don't get me wrong ,the writing is flawless with great pace. It's fun steamy read that is worth your time.

The romance between the two was great, and even though this was a short read I felt their chemistry during the game and when they met in person. The sex scenes was hot, everyone is talking about the "shower scene" a
✿ℎazℯℓ - thℯ ℛock Cℎick ℱairy✿

I am blown away. This story may be quite short, but it had the things that I am looking for in a book. It has:

♥Gaming references
♥A real hero in and out of the game
♥A quite kickass heroine in and out of the game too
♥A match made in umm.. an online game WHICH EVOLVED INTO A REAL LIFE LOVE

I am soooooo happy that I saw one of my friends here in goodreads add this. Thisnmade my day. Cal and Pen's love story is vey cute and also somewhat hot. This is the epitome of fiction. No real
May 19, 2013 Janelle rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to beta read this book, so I can't wait to read the finished version!! I absolutely loved it! I love the characters, the relationships, and I especially love the geeky aspect of it.

Seleste has a great voice, and I love to read when her characters banter with each other. There is no exception here. Great chemistry too!

I can't wait for the next T. R. A. I. T. book!! :o)
Dec 27, 2016 Christina rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016
3.5 - I admit that I am a sucker for a book that has references to gaming or takes place at a convention. My only real complaint is that I wish these books were longer.
Trixiter Marczak
Jun 04, 2013 Trixiter Marczak rated it it was amazing
Wow! What a good book! Loved the story and would so love to see more! Lohonas! Love, love, love the name!
Jen Halligan
Apr 25, 2015 Jen Halligan rated it really liked it
This was a fun, quick read! I enjoyed it, and I'm not a gamer.
Jun 25, 2013 Jenn rated it it was amazing
I am an unabashed gamer geek. I love video games of all sorts, from Facebook puzzle games to epic space adventure trilogies. I really shouldn't reveal how many hours Steam says I've invested into Mass Effect 2, for example. It's a little embarrassing. Okay, more than a little.

So when I saw a tweet about this book, and followed the link to read about how the author had played the first massively multiplayer online roleplaying game (MMORPG) I had started with — EverQuest — I decided I had to check
Sienna Logan (Lost to Books)
For more of my reviews visit

It was the concept of online meeting and Cal being a spy that intrigued me into requesting this book. I wasn't so keen on the online gaming part, what with having no experience in it, and I was slightly worried I wouldn't understand but I went ahead and took a chance on it and I'm glad I did. Although some terminology was used and real games mentioned I did manage to get the gist of what everything was so I wasn't left confused as the
Janell Sutherland
Jun 14, 2013 Janell Sutherland rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
This book made me so jealous, you guys. I wish I was more of a geek girl, that I knew my way around online multiplayer games, that I could wear costumes and go to conventions. Alas, I don’t have the time or mental energy for most of it. I just consume the mainstream movies and tv shows and wish I had more street cred. Penelope — Pen — is the heroine in this story, and she plays the games, she walks the walk, talks the talk. I wish I was her. Her dog’s name is Worf, she references Supernatural an ...more
Melissa Hayden
May 31, 2013 Melissa Hayden rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebook, new-adult, romance
Sexy little read for any and all who enjoy conventions, gamers and bookies alike. A young woman looking for love in someone with interests like her.

So quick of a read, spunky with fun and sexy.

Penelope started playing this game with her ex-boyfriend, who'd team (guild) she is still part of. But Aaron doesn't help her in-game. A man with the screen name Lohonas does. He's always got her back, even if he is from another guild. Lohonas has get in-game morals and team support. If
Genre: novella length, romantic suspense, with a dash of rom-com? Not exactly sure
Standalone/series: stand alone but apparently there will be companion books about other characters
Cliffhanger?: (view spoiler)
Cursing?: Yes
Descriptive Sex?: (view spoiler)
Descriptive Sex Between H/h With OW/OM?:(view spoiler)
Contains Cheating?: (view spoiler)
Amount of Sex In The Book: (view spoiler)
Harlie Williams
Jun 09, 2013 Harlie Williams rated it it was amazing
I’m a little nervous here. This is my first ever Entangled blog tour with a review and I hope I don’t screw it up. When I picked Gaming for Keeps to read, it was the spy angle that intrigued me. Gaming, not so much. For me, gaming is throwing a quarter into the old Tempset machine and hoping that I get a high score. Yes, I’m that old to remember going to the video arcade and spending my babysitting money. Our house has a Playstation and a Wii but it’s completely lost on me. Also, the whole onlin ...more
Jul 31, 2013 Charlie rated it liked it
Read other book reviews at Book Junkie Joint.

Move over, James Bond! There's a new spy in the neighborhood! He's geeky and he's awkward but he's out to prove that chivalry is not dead!

When I was reading Gaming for Keeps, I remember the many late night computer-gaming sessions I had way back in College. I was addicted to an MMORPG game then, and spent many nights in an internet cafe just to play. I wasn't proud of it because it created a serious dip in my grades, but it had been fun. In fact, up u
Jun 05, 2013 Wendy rated it liked it
Originally posted on my blog:

This one caught my eye because I love video games, even if I never have time to play them much anymore. So of course I wanted to check this one out! At only 112 pages, it's really a one sitting read and I really enjoyed it!

Pen is a fun MC who plays a MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role playing game for you non-gamers) and becomes friends with one of the guys she fights with in the game. He invites her to go to a game convention and on a whim
Pen needs to have fun and let loose. She decides the perfect place to do it is ConDamned where she can let her inner nerd loose. She is looking for her partner from Heroes of Fallen Gods but during a misunderstanding she ends up with the attractive guy from the elevator. He is everything she ever imagined she could want in a guy and he is definitely taking her on the adventure of her life. But the most life changing event is when the misunderstanding is cleared up.

Cal is really excited about Con
Gaming For Keeps
Seleste Delaney
Entangled Publishing
June 10, 2013
Only after inviting a girl that he met in an online MMORPG to meet him at a gaming convention does Cal Burrows learn there is danger afoot at the convention. As a spy, he has been enlisted to get hold of a code that a terrorist is sending through at the convention so they can find out what he’s up to. He can only hope that her hesitation in accepting his invitation will convince her to stay home.
Penelope Holloway is drawn to the onl
Jun 06, 2013 Kay rated it liked it
This was really refreshing since I have never read a contemporary romance set in the online video gaming world. I’m not a gamer so I’m not familiar with this popular world. I’m sure if I was, I would really have enjoyed the sly details of these games, avatars, guilds, etc….I’m sure I’m leaving out more lingo. I appreciate that the terminology wasn’t over bearing though so I wasn’t confused. I was still able to follow along and watch these two characters navigate their way around the gaming talk. ...more
Whitney (Shooting Stars Reviews)
Reviewed by Whitney@Shooting Stars Reviews

Gaming for Keeps begins with Pen playing an mmo online and getting asked by her virtual guy friend to meet at a con called ConDamned. The problem is Pen hasn't had the best of luck with guys, and she's not so sure she wants to ruin the illusion of her friend online, especially because he calls her, "darling," and always has her back. But she decides to go ahead and go through with it and meet him at the con. Well, little did she know that the guy she's a
Apr 18, 2015 Jen rated it really liked it
Check out my full review on Bookaholics Not-So-Anonymous.

Gaming for Keeps is the first novella in the Agents of TRAIT series from author Seleste deLaney and is a romantic suspense thriller featuring two geeky but gorgeous online gamers, one of whom just happens to be an agent for a secret government agency. The story itself was fast-paced and pleasantly surprised me with the amount of action and romance. This being the first in a series, I found myself already interested in finding out more abou
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Author of speculative romance (aka Julie Particka, young adult author).

My quirky spy series, Agents of TRAIT, is published by Entangled: GAMING FOR KEEPS, CONNING FOR KEEPS, FIGHTING FOR KEEPS, and DYING FOR KEEPS (coming November 2015)!

My steampunk romance series is from Carina Press: BADLANDS and CLOCKWORK MAFIA.

The Blood Kissed novels (KISS OF DEATH, KISS OF LIFE, and coming soon TALES OF TH
More about Seleste deLaney...

Other Books in the Series

Agents of TRAIT (4 books)
  • Conning For Keeps (Agents of TRAIT, #2)
  • Fighting for Keeps (Agents of TRAIT, #3)
  • Dying for Keeps (Agents of TRAIT, #4)

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