Saturday, 3 August 2013

Review: Out of Play by Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry

Title: Out of Play
Authors: Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry
Release date: August 6th 2013
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Format: eARC
Pages: 328
Source: NetGalley

Rock star drummer Bishop Riley doesn't have a drug problem. Celebrities—especially ones suffering from anxiety—just need a little help taking the edge off sometimes. After downing a few too many pills, Bishop wakes up in the hospital facing an intervention. If he wants to stay in the band, he’ll have to detox while under house arrest in Seldon, Alaska. 

Hockey player Penny Jones can't imagine a life outside of Seldon. Though she has tons of scholarship offers to all the best schools, the last thing she wants is to leave. Who'll take care of her absentminded gramps? Not her mother, who can’t even be bothered to come home from work, let alone deal with their new tenants next door.

Penny’s not interested in dealing with Bishop’s crappy attitude, and Bishop’s too busy sneaking pills to care. Until he starts hanging out with Gramps and begins to see what he’s been missing. If Bishop wants a chance with the fiery girl next door, he’ll have to admit he has a problem and kick it. Too bad addiction is hard to kick…and Bishop’s about to run out of time.

Firstly, a clarification - Out of Play is YA, not NA. I thought it was NA, too, but after reading the book I realized it's not, and the authors do state on their websites that this is YA. Now that that's out of the way, this book is absolutely fantastic! I especially adored the amazing main characters. Penny and Bishop are definitely two of the strongest protagonists I've read about, and Nyrae and Jolene did an amazing job creating them.

I'm embarrassed to say I haven't read either of these authors' previous books, but after this one, I'm definitely looking forward to doing that. I've started to really like dual POVs now, but this is one of the only books where I feel it actually has a purpose. I didn't find Bishop all that amazing at the beginning, but being inside his head for a while, knowing the reasons behind the things he does, I really began to connect with him.

I've never met a character like Penny before. She's definitely one of the guys, playing on the boys' hockey team and just hanging out with them all the time. I really liked that for once, the protagonist wasn't girly at all. I could relate to her a lot more easily, and that was awesome. I really love Penny's sarcasm and snark, it adds this awesome humourous effect to her dialogue. What I found slightly ridiculous, as Bishop says, is that she's got every guy wrapped around her little finger. Getting the pizza guy to deliver just for her and a guy working at McDonalds to not charge her for her orders seems a little overboard. But that didn't dampen my enjoyment in any way, as you can see by my rating! Because Penny is a total badass and I loved her. I also found it a lot easier to relate to her because of her attitude towards a lot of things. Change, for example.
I'm not ready for anything to change.
I totally get that! I hate change. Penny's getting awesome scholarship offers from women's hockey teams in universities around the country, but all she wants is to stay in Alaska and play hockey on the men's team with the guys she's grown up with. And I really feel for her. I get how she doesn't want to let go of everything she's ever known.

Bishop was a little harder to figure out. In the beginning, even reading from his perspective didn't really let me get inside his head much. But we figure out more about him later. I loved Bishop's vulnerability. You don't see that a lot in book guys, because they have to be all tough and all. Bishop's tough too, but he has a good balance. It was sweet to see how much he cares for his mom and that he wants her to be happy. And watching him work on the car with Gramps? Amazing. His relationship with Gramps is so fun and close. He really trusts him. And his relationship with Penny is even better, of course. Sparks fly between them immediately, but it takes them a little while to get where they are at the end of the novel. They have a lot of ups and downs, which makes sense because of their stubborn attitudes and Bishop's well-kept secrets.

One thing I found a little weird was that no one seemed to recognize Bishop at all. I get that most people don't know the drummers of bands, but when it's one you really like... I found it especially weird that Penny didn't recognize him, since she's seen him in the zone, playing the drums like his life depends on it. And she loves his band, Burn. At least she realizes too, that it was strange that she didn't know who he is.

The writing in this book is freaking amazing, especially when Bishop's drumming or Penny's on the ice. I really felt like I was there with them, you know? I felt like I was in the zone with them. I want to re-read this book again just to feel that. And to absorb more of Bishop and Penny, of course. And the secondary characters are epic, too. Gramps is one hell of a cool grandpa! I loved him, he's the bomb. And I really liked Gary, Bishop's 'babysitter' in Seldon. He keeps Bishop grounded, and there's more to him than meets the eye.

I really hope Nyrae and Jolene continue this collaboration of theirs with another book, because in my opinion it's working extremely well. I was totally riveted by this book, and I can't seem to get it out of my head. I'd recommend Out of Play to absolutely everyone! You guys really have to read this. No choice. It'll blow you away, I guarantee.

*Thank you to Entangled Publishing for providing me with an ARC for review*

Rating: 5/5


  1. This is the first review I've read for this book but it does sound really promising. I'm kind of iffy on the NA genre but I'm always willing to try another one.

    1. Out of Play is YA, not NA. I mentioned that at the beginning :P You should totally check this one out, it's amazing!


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