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Rough Contact

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  168 ratings  ·  66 reviews
Their romance is forbidden. Their love is a secret.

Neal Fisher knows heartbreak. It's the clock ticking down in the Super Bowl. It's missing the most important field goal of his life. It's losing everything: his thirteen year career as an NFL kicker, his future, and his pride.

Jamie Wright knows love. It's everything on the line as the crowd holds their breath. It's a
Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 438 pages
Published October 14th 2020 (first published October 12th 2020)
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Average rating 4.23  · 
Rating details
 ·  168 ratings  ·  66 reviews

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Oct 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
As ever a disclaimer that I beta read this book for Beth.

Now, onto the book itself. It's even better than the loosely connected The Rivalry and I absolutely loved everything about this romance.

It's a difficult one to put into a trope, there's elements of forbidden romance, it's obviously a sports romance, but it's also a bit of hurt/comfort, a bit of overcoming fears, a bit of an age gap and an interracial relationship.

Overall though, it's a beautiful story of two guys who by anyone's reckoning,
Oct 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
I love sports in general, I've never understood American futbol because I'm Latina and our futbol is totally different, but I still like ma games in ma books.

Why? Because even when they have a little bit of insta-love, (like this one does) the sports trope always makes for a good structure of the story, if the author is knowledgeable enough it could make you forget that there is insta shit going. And that's what happened here.

Neil is a player who failed to get the point who would have won the
Mary Mary
Oct 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, m-m, jocks-sport
I love books about sports and this is a really good one.
It is believable even though everything happens a little bit too fast.
It is insta-lust/insta-love but since Jamie was Neal's fan for YEARS it is OK.

The romance part was absolutely cute, but the futbol and competition was also very important.
The story is fast paced, sweet and very enjoyable. There is almost no drama.
There is an age gap (14 years) between MCs, but there is so many things that they have in common it is not a problem.

WycEd Reader

Check out our full post for ROUGH CONTACT on Wicked Reads.

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Erica ☆☆☆☆☆
Rough Contact is listed as a standalone, but I do caution that reading Rivalry beforehand would be a good idea. No confusion to be had, but the two novels are connected by the same NFL team and a cast of friends. The emotional investment may be higher if read in concert with one another.

From word one, I was hooked, reading Rough Contact from cover to cover in a single sitting. It was
Nov 15, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: mm, sports
3.5 stars. An entertaining sports romance. It was quite insta-lovey, but it felt more like a case of the boys meeting at the right time and the right place and just clicking. It was nice that the age gap and the differences in experience didn't play a role and that both were equally important to the other. I wanted to give it four stars, but I'm deducting half a star, because the football business overshadowed the romance part and the way Neal was excommunicated didn't feel realistic after ...more
Erica Chilson
I received a free copy of this title to read and review for Wicked Reads

5 Stars

Rough Contact is listed as a standalone, but I do caution that reading Rivalry beforehand would be a good idea. No confusion to be had, but the two novels are connected by the same NFL team and a cast of friends. The emotional investment may be higher if read in concert with one another.

From word one, I was hooked, reading Rough Contact from cover to cover in a single sitting. It was beyond easy to empathize with
Ruthie Taylor
Oct 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
~~I received a free copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads ~~

This is the second in a series - and I would definitely recommend that you read Sam and Harris's story if you haven't already. You could definitely read this first and enjoy it, but you would find out a few of the earlier couple's adventures. I am a big sports romance fan - and here we get to experience the pressure that a kicker will place on themselves in the NFL.

Neal has spent six months hiding under his duvet -
Oct 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
Such a great sports romance! There is a lot going on for readers throughout the whole book - age gap, hurt/comfort, american football romance, mental health.
Jamie is the rookie trying out for the newly vacant kicker position with Riptide after Neal missed the Super Bowl winning kick six months previously. Completely unexpected is the friendship that starts up with his new teammates and his introduction to the man he will be replacing. Jamie has looked up to Neal for years with his
Oct 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Football players are hot, so of course I was sold the moment I saw the blurb for this one. Just imagining Neil and Jamie behind closed doors ... yum!

The main characters of Rough Contact were at different points in their careers. Their connection, their need for each other couldn't have come at a worst moment, let alone falling in love. But, the longer they were around each other, the more they got to know one another on a non-sexual level, the stronger they fell, and I loved seeing it. Neal and
Oct 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wow, this certainly played with my heart. Neal and Jamie do not have an easy time, and although they have so much angst and hurt and confusion to get through, it just makes it so so worth it. Neal and Jamie both complement each other, and it hurts in the best way while we wait for them to work together to truly find peace in their decisions and their lives. The depth of their connection is so well-done, you just feel it in your bones. And that's why the HEA is so incredibly powerful and ...more
Oct 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shine bright like a star

This book is an amazing way to kickoff a sports romance. It has all the feels, all of them, and I devoured every word. I felt for Neal and I felt his pain. Watching him come back to life was like seeing the sun after a brutal rain, refreshing and beautiful. I absolutely adore Jamie. Hes brilliant throughout this book and I cant get enough of him, his outlook on life or his pure joy.

I need, really need, more of Neal and Jamie together. Gah, I love them so much. I feel
Oct 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
As one player's career is coming to an end another player is just beginning his. When these two meet up sparks fly!
Neal loses his place on the team when he misses a crucial kick. Jamie is the rookie trying out for his position. While the timing couldn't be worse, how do you stop such intense attraction?
The chemistry and connection between these two jumps right off the page.
I thoroughly enjoyed this story and couldn't put it down!
Oct 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
I love M/M sports romances, and this one between football kickers is so damn charming. Its never any doubt whether theyll get together or whether they really like each other; the conflict is outside the connection. Plus, a return of or reference to other characters from Boldens books makes it an enjoyable addition to the Boldenworld.

Is this a book Ill read again and again? No. But was it a feel-good queer sports romance that was fun to read? Absolutely.
Joyfully Jay
Nov 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sammy
A Joyfully Jay review.

4 stars

Beth Boldens football romance, Rough Contact, is two parts sport and many parts steam heat. The dynamic between Neal and Jamie is absolutely volcanic and watching the two of them reach beyond their age difference, the fact that Jamie is vying for Neals old job, and their instant lust for each other is quite fun. But theres also a deeper context here with the story focusing on guilt, self-recrimination, and the resulting depression losing your career can bring,
So. Much. Football. <3
Sharing The Book Love
I was looking forward to this read but honestly found it a little long! I did take a few days break and then come back to finish it!

It was sappy and sweet, with some angst about people finding out. This is a solid 3 star read but not my favourite book by this author
Autumn Breeze
Oct 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Beth Bolden did it again.

Rough Contact was a captivating read that I couldnt put down until that last page.

Neil and Jamie had sparks from their first conversation that turned into a full blow inferno as soon as they were face to face. The pair of them fought a good fight, trying to keep their head in the game, so Jamie could get his dream job as kicker for Riptide, but it proved impossible with the passion simmering just under the surface.

Nov 16, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: romance
2.75 stars. My first read by this author, as this was the most recently released. Wanted this to be better than it was, but overall this was interesting and had the potential, just wished the romance between Jamie and Neal wasn't so instalovey or generic-esque, and that they were more distinct as characters because their points of view kinda blurred together for me there. The pro football element was prominent, but rather too heavily featured IMO, too much back and forth of the team being a ...more
Amy Stauffer
This is probably the longest book Ive read in a long time, but it felt like it was over way too soon. I was addicted, and completely invested, by the end of the prologue.

Man, Neal was dealt a horrible hand. One. Missed. Kick. Thats all it took to change his life, but what if it wasnt for the worst? Before that can be addressed, he has to pull his head out of the sand and get his act together. Meeting Jamie may just be the kick in the pants he needed.

Jamie is adorable. How could you not wanna
Oct 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
I was given a copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads.

This is the story of a professional football player whose career comes to a sudden, unexpected end. Its also the story of the relationship that develops between Neal and Jamie, the man fighting hard to take his spot on the team.

This story probably relies a little too heavily on some of the same storylines from Heath and Sams book. Like Sam, Jamie is a younger player ready to fill Neals position. Unlike the first book, however,
Heather (AllTheJuicyBits)
Oct 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Warm and fuzzies isn't what I would normally expect from reading an MM romance set in the world of NFL football. But Jamie and Neal's story gives me ALL the feels in ALL the places.

Neal is a 30-something NFL kicker who fell into a horrible depression after missing a huge kick at the Superbowl and being unceremoniously released by his team. Jamie is the young, fresh out of college kicker who is competing for the spot on the team left open by Neal. When they meet at a party held at the home of
Oct 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Rough Contact by Beth Bolden follows Jamie Wright as he attempts to follow in the footsteps of his idol, Neal Fisher, after the mans fall from grace due to a missed kick attempt during the Super Bowl. Despite everything that should discourage a relationship, the two form a connection. Now to see if they can make it work despite all odds.

This adult gay sport romance provides great glimpses of the football world, with its intense pressure, superstitions, hard work, and elements of chance that can
Amy Dufera
Oct 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Beth Bolden's Rough Contact is a fantastic sports romance. With sports romances being my all time favorite, I was super excited for this one. And it's awesome!

This book is easily read as a standalone, but it's even better if you've read The Rivalry first. With the characters and the teams overlapping, it just adds to the fun.

This is Neal and Jamie's story. They're not only connected to the same team, but Jamie is the young man trying to replace Neal. I have long enjoyed the real life
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Several years ago, Adam Sandler wrote a song called "The Lonesome Kicker." The song was funny but also pretty sad, and I thought of it when Neal Fisher was dealing with the fallout of his missed Super Bowl field goal. No one notices the kicker until he screws up, and Neal's mistake was more than many people, including Neal himself, could handle. This man broke my heart!
When Jamie Wright came to town hoping to win the job as Neal's replacement, and they met at a party, I immediately loved their
Oct 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviews
Sometimes you read a book and you just know right from the start that you are going to love it. This is that book. By the end of the prologue, I already loved Neal. And it doesn't take long to fall for Jamie either. The two of them come together quickly in this book, but they just click. It all feels natural despite the age gap and the improbable circumstances that brought them together. And the romance between Neal and Jamie is sweet and heartwarming, with minimal angst.

The storyline has really
Rather fittingly, I finished reading "Rough Contact" while an NFL game played on TV in the background, and with a new appreciation of special teams! The opening of "Rough Contact" broke my heart for Neal...any sports fan can relate to the agony of a horrendously tough game loss, and as terrifically illustrated here, it's an especially acute pain felt by the players. I also appreciated how much focus there is on the game of football itself and the "mental game" aspect of being a professional ...more
Oct 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sports
5 stars. Recommended - I could not put it down!

MM Romance - Sports trope - Age-gap - Instant attraction Hot Chemistry!!!

I loved this book and was up all night reading it! It is a story about two NFL kickers, one who is forced off the team and the one vying to take his place. Ms. Bolden puts a new spin on the football romance trope by giving her MCs a position on the team that most do not appreciate the Kicker! (I tried to name one NFL kicker and came up blank). Kickers are not important until
Cathy Brockman
Oct 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing

Jamie has always dreamed of being a kicker and being on the Team his favorite player and crush played on is bittersweet since he will possibly be taking his job. He arrives to find 9 others trying out and that its a tough competition and the coaches are making it personal though Neal didnt lose that kick on his own it had been tipped but it was one of those kicks of a lifetime and after thirteen years the team was out for blood.

Neal was having his own issues over missing that kick, losing his
MJ's Book Blog and Reviews
Review by: Jennifer
(3 stars)

Missing the field goal in the super bowl pretty much spelled out the end of Neal's pro-football career. When his ex was the one to make sure that he got the news that he wasn't being asked back to play next season and oh by the way we are also done, Neal sort of hit rock bottom... wouldn't you?

Jamie is one of the many kickers that is offered a chance to show off their skills for Neal's old team. It seems that the coaches are holding a a bit of a grudge, and putting
Oct 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If this book was a modern day fairytale, then the blurb would be the following: once upon a time there was a young smart and talented kicker who desperately wanted to play for the NFL despite his fathers better judgement. He had to take part in a stressful and unusual tournament set up to choose the new kicker of the team by the Riptide wizards, who had lost their bearings after the previous seasons lost of the Bowl. The young kicker had always looked up to the older former kicker, who had ...more
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A lifelong Oregonian, Beth Bolden has just recently moved to North Carolina with her supportive husband and their sweet kitten, Earl Grey. Beth still believes in Keeping Portland Weird, and intends to be just as weird in Raleigh.

Beth has been writing practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first foray into novel writing, titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasnt a

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