The Love Playbook by Suze Winegardner
Publication Date: November 4, 2019
Publisher: Entangled Teen Crush
When Avery Stone learns her dad will be fired if his high school team doesn’t make the playoffs, she has to get her head out of her day planner and do something—anything—to help him win. Even if it means secretly coaching the team’s newest player, who seems to have more game than skill.
Lucas Black just transferred to Hillside with a fake name and a big secret. The MVP of every team he’d played on since he was seven—not to mention the MVP of every post-game party—he can’t understand why since arriving at Hillside, he’s been unable to catch a single. Freaking. Ball.
Until…Avery. Amazing, kind, generous, and crazy-freaking-hot Avery.
As Lucas goes from zero back to hero and Avery struggles with just what Lucas means to her, she inadvertently sets them on a collision course with Lucas’s secret…a secret that could take down not only Lucas but her father too.
DISCLAIMER: This Entangled Teen Crush contains a football player hotter than the Texas sun, hotel cuddles, and a steamy makeout session in the rain.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Suze Winegardner is a British YA writer, currently living overseas with her military husband, and lovely Lab. She loves Buffy, Fray Bentos pies, Archer, cheese, and the serial comma. Wait - Cadbury Flakes too. And naps. Wait, what was the question? Anyway, she thinks her life is chock full of hoot, just a little bit of nanny...and if you get that reference, she already considers you kin.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I fell in love with Greek mythology on a vacation to Greece, and started writing a YA book, set half in contemporary times, and half in ancient Greece (with the same heroine). I still love this book, and I *may* revisit it at some stage to see if anything on it is salvageable!
How much of the book is realistic?
Most of the experiences that Lucas had as a prodigy football player were taken from articles that I read about the different ways that colleges would entice high school players to join their schools. I was kind of shocked by what I read, but also I really felt for the kids who got swept up in the excitement of playing football at college.
What books have most influenced your life most?
I read Andy Warhol’s Diaries when I was a teenager, and for the first time I *really* understood that there was a whole world outside of my own small suburban life. It changed the way I looked at what I wanted to do with my life, and the other kinds of books that I wanted to read. One of the other books that really stayed with me, was A Wheel of Stars, by Laura Gilmour Bennett. It’s about star-crossed lovers chasing the Holy Grail in different time periods. It was published decades before Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code, but shares a common storyline. Come to think about it—maybe this was why my first ever book was about one girl in two time periods!
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The hardest part of writing The Love Playbook, was that I am British, and knew nothing (outside of Tom Brady and the Pats – thanks to my husband) about football. Ask me anything about soccer or cricket or rugby, and I’m there. But football had a whole new language and culture that I had to get absorbed in! I read articles, and books. I watched movies and talked to high school football parents. I talked to people who were in Texan high school teams, and went to watch high school practices. It was a whole new world for me!
Do you have any advice for other writers?
NaNoWriMo is here! The one year I won, I started a couple of weeks late…so it’s doable! And it’s a great exercise in finding time in your busy day to write, and how to think about what you’re going to write next, and how to find people doing the same thing as you, and getting in the discipline of sitting down, blocking your real life out for a while, and writing. Just do it!
Have you ever hated something you wrote?
No. I’ve thought I hated it as I was writing it. But when I let it sit, and went back to re-read it, I’m usually surprised at how much I like it. So even if you think you hate your book, keep going, because you’ll probably love it by the time you finish!
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