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Playing by the Rules (Portwood Brothers, #2)
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Playing by the Rules

(Portwood Brothers #2)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  175 ratings  ·  77 reviews
Payton always had one rule she lived by, no boyfriends until after college. No one seemed to agree with her, even her own mother who had her at age sixteen. Returning to school after an accident that flipped Payton’s world upside down left her feeling out of control. Holding on to her rule seemed to be her only lifeline.

Josh had been letting the past rule his life for too
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Published (first published August 25th 2015)
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Average rating 4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  175 ratings  ·  77 reviews

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Aug 20, 2020 marked it as to-read
Shelves: freebie
🎁 FREE on Amazon & on iBooks today (8/20/2020)! 🎁
Lynn Reynolds
Oct 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finished-reading
Payton Whitmore seems to be having a really bad day. She has a few insecurities that seem to add to her vulnerability which also affects her emotionally. Josh seems to be having a bad day as well. It’s interesting to watch these two skim around each other’s space before they truly come into contact with each other. The author makes Payton strong enough that she can feel comfortable enough around Josh that she finally has the courage to share some of herself with him. But she also shows the frust ...more
Tina Morgan
Sep 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a 4 star read from me. It is a cute romance book. The story flows well too it doesn't lag at all. I was halfway through the book before I realized it. Payton is a product of a teenage pregnancy and saw how much her mom struggled her entire life. So she decided no boyfriend's until after school was completely over. And it worked for her until her junior year of college and she meets Josh and he breaks down her walls. But she's still hiding things from him. Josh has been leet in the past a ...more
Candi Gabbart
Apr 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
* Received a copy in exchange for an honest review that being said.
When I began this book it took me sometime to get into. It was slow at first but then all of a sudden it took off.
You will fall in love with Payton and Josh story. Payton never had a boyfriend before then she meets Josh and he isn't going to give up on her yet. With their past and obstacles in there way can they find a Happy ending.
Naomi Connor
Aug 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
***ARC provided in exchange for an honest review - Naomi / Scandalous Book Blog***

I loved the whole feel of this book. Somewhere along the way I felt like I, the reader became part of their world. Emily's writing is compelling and brings endless hours of fun.

Payton and Josh are 2 great characters on their own, however when they come together they are electrifying.
College life is never easy and with the insecurities they both hold finding there way is a bumpy road.

Payton is really having a rough
Nov 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
The portwood Brothers are something else. This books can be read as stand alones, but honestly? You'll want to meet the whole family.

Josh is a really good guy. He's trying to get over his horrible ex when he meets Payton. He likes her instantly and starts trying to get her to go out with him.
Payton has rules. Lots of them. She has no time for dating until after college, that way she won't end up as her mom pregnant at a young age.

Payton is quite the character. After a car accident she has memor
Amy Stephens
Aug 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am so blown away with Playing by the Rules! Emily Robertson has created this amazing cast of characters that makes me want to go back to college and be friends with all of them. I am literally begging for more.

I am a huge lover of college romance stories and this is one of my favorites. I immediately fell into this story and felt a connection with Payton as she struggled with returning to her junior year of college after suffering from a rather painful summer. I wanted to be that best-friend f
Vedika Sheth
Sep 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
First of all, shoutout to this author’s writing style. Amazing!

This novel follows Josh and Payton. Payton is going through a lot due to an accident that past summer that caused her mother to fall into a coma. She’s also dealing with memory loss problems from it. One of her professors notices that she’s out of her headspace and asks her to converse with the Dean of Students. When she goes to the office, she sees Josh glaring at her.

After Josh sees her red-rimmed eyes and hears her sniffling, he
Aug 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Book 2 in the series . Contemporary Romance . Hero is Josh . Heroine is Payton .
Josh and Payton go to the same school .
Payton mom is in a coma from a car accident. Payton blames her self for the coma . But Payton didn't get off Scott free either . Payton has wicked headaches, her memory comes and goes . Payton needs to talk to the dean at school and that is where she meets Josh.
Josh wonders who she is and why was her time with the dean more important than his . But Josh likes the look of Payt
Sheri Bishop
Aug 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
The more books I read by Emily Robertson, the more I begin to love her writing style. She really pulls you into the story and makes you feel what each character is feeling. Then she throws in a few twists and turns just to keep us on our toes. Nicely done, Ms Emily.

Payton - girl you were so uptight when this story started. But we loved and rooted for you anyway. And as we watched you grow and come into your womanhood, we just loved you more.

And Josh - I loved you from page one. The way you over
Julie Booklover
Sep 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, 2020
3.5 stars

Payton has baggage, that results in rules. Not that rules are a bad thing, just a rigid life leaves no room for being a young adult. Not wanting to make her mother's mistake, dating is off the table. Life has other plans for Payton, an accident over the summer leaves her with medical issues, guilt, and distractions. Her insecurities and need for control, play into her decisions. Josh is one of her distractions, he has his own set of baggage due to an ex. He knows that Payton is not like
Feb 25, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

I read this book based on all the high ratings it’s received, but unfortunately I didn’t particularly enjoy it. It wasn’t a bad book, the writing and the characters were okay. I just didn’t really care for the heroine and I don’t know why the hero (and his twin) were so into her. It seemed like Josh was only so into her because she was hard to get, and Jax maybe because she’s off limits. The characters were quite immature IMO, but I think they are around 19-21yrs old, so I guess it’s approp
Christine Galletly
May 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing

I really enjoyed this book - and best of all I was lucky enough to get it as a free download from Amazon!

I thought that the book was great, it had a really well developed storyline with some excellent characters that were strong on personality, they worked really well together and had some great interaction.

It was a story of bravery, hesitation, it was romantic and trusting - A great way to pass a few hours!!
It is 5 stars from me for this one, very well
Jennifer Richey
Jul 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I recieved a voluntary copy of this book! Wow the cover of this book I love it and from the first page to the blurb I'm hooked! Wow this story had me glued I didn't want to put it down I really loved Payton and Josh chemistry!!! She got in a bad wreck and her mama too The only thing is her mama is on life support and she survived! Payton pushes Josh away a lot but will she finally let her walls down some what? I loved how we see Addison and Bryce engaged and still together!!! Loved this story!! ...more
Julie Jackson
Aug 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Reviewed for SNS

This book was very intense and emotional. Payton hasn’t been the same since the accident and things are spiraling out of control. When she meets Josh, she dismisses him but soon finds that she cannot get him out of her head. She agrees to one dinner but that turns into so much more. Her family, his family, and a lot of raw and very vivid emotions are present. Josh only wants her to be free of her nightmares and stay with him. Can he hold onto her or will she push him away for goo
Spunky N Sassy
Spunky N Sassy Rating: 4.66

~~~~~~~~~~Tracy's ★★★★★ Review~~~~~~~~~~

Payton Whitmore has been set to not repeat her mother's mistakes and she is determined to not have any relationship until after college and when she can devote the time they need. Unfortunately Josh Portwood didn't get the memo and he will do anything to capture Payton's attention. Josh is out from under his twin's shadow for the first time or so he thought. Things in Josh and Payton's lives get more chaotic as the world around t
Nagma (Take A Look At My Bookshelf)
The great debut novel by Emily Robertson with wonderful characters. Payton Whitmore is committed to completing her college degree without any distractions, specifically boys. Josh Portwood lives life to the fullest every day of college. When these characters meet it's easy to see that they're meant for each other.

Payton and Josh's love story is emotional and powerful. This book is well written and I loved every second of it.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily le
Aug 05, 2022 rated it really liked it
Intriguing and emotional read.

There was a lot going on in this book. I was really drawn to the cast of characters, and immersed in the long and involved journey of Payton and Josh. Their road is so difficult, that at times it was difficult to feel any joy in their connection, and I wondered what is was all about. However I am intrigued to read further into the series and am hoping to ultimately get more of a happy ending for Payton and Josh.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and
Jun 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Emily Robertson writes great relationship stories. She has you invested in the characters and gives them many layers to peel away. Josh and Payton each have their baggage and it is interesting to see how they each came to deal with them and still come together. Payton's story is so sad and heart-wrenching. Their friends and family were written with such realism. I can't wait to read the next installment with Josh's twin Jackson. I received this book as an ARC. ...more
Mulan Book Princess
Sep 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Another great novel by Emily Robertson,. I am really enjoying the Portwood Brothers series and can’t wait for the third book. So far, the books cover such a wide range of emotions and real-life type issues, tempered with love, romance and steamy hot scenes. A definite fantastic addition to my library.

I received a free advanced review copy of this book and am voluntarily leaving a fair and honest review.
My Secret Book Spot
Good read for sure!

This was my first read from this author so I had no clue what to expect. I was very pleasantly surprised and read the book in one sitting. I immediately liked Josh and his friends but it took a while to get into Payton. I understood her issues but couldn’t see why they made her so hot and cold all the time. In the end it was a great read but I am bummed about the ending. Now I need to start book 2 to make the feeling go away!
Pippa, My Secret Book Spot
my collective of books
Jun 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Amazing! The book was well written with indepth character development and engaging plot. I felt a lot of emotions reading this from happiness to anger to frustration, but overall I felt hopeful. Payton went through many struggles throughout the book and it takes a lot of patience and determination that Josh had to help her through it. It's a wonderful read. ...more
Jun 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Emily Robertson's "Playing by the Rules" is a cute, sweet romance with a lot of character. As I was reading, I felt like I was watching friends from afar and feeling for them and rooting for them. I was able to relate to both main characters on some level, and that plus the great writing kept me engaged throughout the book. Emily Robertson has a lot to be proud of for her debut novel. ...more
Sep 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
I liked the premise and the author delivered. in my opinion. It was an interesting story that I found engaging. The things that we are exposed to as we age change our views and craft our thoughts. They also create our fears. The author cleverly used this to write a story that I found realistic and believable. I liked reading this book.
May 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great storyline with well developed characters that hooked me right into their story from the very beginning and kept me totally enthralled until the very end!

I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book.
Oct 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
After reading Playing it Cool I wanted to know more about the dynamic band of brothers that are the Portwoods. This book did not disappoint. The storyline with all its drama made turning the pages ever so easy
Sep 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
A good story, although I would have loved it even more if it was written in the first point of view, this is a deal breaker for me, so only 4 stars from me.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Sep 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved everything about it - the characters, the plot, the emotion, the writing!

The author had a unique way of telling the story that had me wanting this book to go on and on.

This review has been voluntarily submitted for your consideration.
Paula Genereau
Aug 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Oh my!!! This book was amazing. It had me wanting more. It's well written and you will love Payton. I know I did. ...more
Aug 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Love this book. It is easy to read and well written. Love the characters Can not wait for the next one in this series.
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Emily Robertson’s creativity started early in life on stage. Now instead of theatre, she spends her time creating worlds on the page for others to enjoy. As an avid reader, she enjoys reading New Adult and Contemporary Romance as much as she does writing them. When her dog isn’t keeping her company in her office, she might be anywhere. She’s recently learned all about baseball when her son took up ...more

Other books in the series

Portwood Brothers (5 books)
  • Playing it Cool (Portwood Brothers, #1)
  • Playing with Fire (Portwood Brothers, #3)
  • Playing for the Win (Portwood Brothers, #4)
  • Playing for her Heart (Portwood Brothers, #5)

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