Audiobook Review: Beauty and the Baller (Strangers in Love, #1). ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Beauty and the Baller by Ilsa Madden-Mills

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

An NFL quarterback turned small-town coach gets sacked by a Texas beauty queen in this swoony, passionate romance from Wall Street Journal bestselling author Ilsa Madden-Mills.

Gorgeous, talented, and brilliant, NFL quarterback Ronan Smith has the world in his hands. But after losing his career and his fiancée in a car accident, he falls into a pit of grief and bad choices. When a mysterious girl shows up to his party, he feels drawn to her and makes her his…for one night.

Former beauty queen Nova Morgan is on a mission. Scantily clad as a princess from a galaxy far, far away, she sneaks into a high-profile party to capture the attention of her favorite quarterback. But her hopes crash after an awful one-night stand.

Fast-forward two years. Broke and desperate, Nova returns home to Blue Belle, Texas, where, by a cosmic twist of fate, her broody neighbor is none other than Ronan, the shiny new football coach everyone adores. But he has no idea who she is.

The booster club keeps shoving women at Ronan to keep him in town. His solution? He proposes fake dating to Nova. But things heat up for real under these Friday-night lights when he realizes she’s the one who slipped away.

Has this jaded beauty found her forever baller, or will his past keep them apart?

Beauty and the Baller

True romance!

The following ratings are out of 5:
Narration: 🎙🎙🎙🎙
Romance: 💙💚🖤💜❤️
Heat/Steam: 🔥🔥🔥🔥
Story/Plot: 📕📗📘📙📔
World building: 🌎🌍🌏🌎🌍
Character development: 😪😠🤐🙂😘

The heroine: Nova Morgan – dressed in a gold bikini a’la Princess Leia from Return of the Jedi. She sneaks in to a party full of NFL players to meet her quarterback crush. She grew up in Texas where football is revered.

The Hero: Ronan Smith – NFL quarterback and huge Star Wars fan, who recently lost both his career and his fiancé in a car accident. He won the Heisman trophy and went on to three super bowl wins in a row before the accident.

The Story: Nova and Ronan end up having a one night stand after meeting at the costume party. Though Ronan has been drinking and is still suffering grief from the loss of his fiancé and his football career and the night doesn’t go as Nova had hoped.

Fast forward a few years and Nova has to return to her home town to take care of her teenage sister after their mother dies. In their town, high school football is the biggest thing and everyone idolizes a winning coach.

Nova is not happy to learn that her new neighbor is none other than Ronan Smith and he doesn’t remember her. The local boosters are determined to get Ronan married to a local girl to keep him in town after his first winning season. Nova is not happy to see the multitude of local girls at the house next door.

This was told in dual points of view via dual narration where the male narrator does all the chapters in Ronan’s point of view and the female does the chapters told in Nova’s point of view. The narrators are Sebastian York and Savannah Peachwood who are two of my favorites. Sebastian has a deep gravelly voice which is perfect for Ronan and Savannah has a soft pleasing voice.

I really liked how the relationship between Ronan and Nova progressed in this one. There is animosity between them at first when they meet again in Texas, then they become reluctant friends, and then share a secret and help each other becoming even closer.

Though Ronan has issues from his past and has fear of becoming close to someone else after losing his fiancé so tragically and feelings of guilt stemming from that. He has no plans to have a real relationship with anyone. This was just a very good romance with steamy scenes and more.


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