Review: After the Game by Abbi Glines

After the Game by Abbi Glines

Series: The Field Party #3

Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary

Release Date: August 22, 2017

Format: eARC

Source: Edelweiss/Simon Pulse

Find it here: GoodReads | Amazon

Two years ago, Riley Young fled from Lawton, Alabama. After accusing the oldest Lawton son, Rhett, of rape, everyone called her a liar and she had no option but to leave. Now she’s back, but she’s not at Lawton High finishing up her senior year. She’s at home raising the little girl that no one believed was Rhett’s.

Rhett is off at college living the life he was afraid he’d lose with Riley’s accusation, so Riley agrees to move back to Lawton so she and her parents could take care of her grandmother, who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. But the town still hasn’t forgotten their hate for her, and she hasn’t forgotten the way they turned on her when she needed them most.

When town golden boy Brady Higgens finds Riley and her daughter, Bryony, stranded on the side of the road in a storm, he pulls over and gives them a ride. Not because he cares about Riley, of course, but because of the kid.

But after the simple car ride, he begins to question everything he thought he knew. Could Brady believe Riley and risk losing everything?

This final installment in The Field Party trilogy was by far my favorite. With less soap opera drama and less obnoxious behavior from the local football gods, After the Game was able to reel me in with Riley and Brady’s story.

Riley was a character I truly liked and respected. When she accused the son of the town’s most powerful family of rape, she was branded a liar. Now back after a two year absence, she is solely focused on raising her daughter. Riley had to grow up quickly and her maturity showed in how she respected her parents, helped care for her Alzheimer’s-stricken grandmother, and finished high school from home with online classes. Because of this, Riley was largely unconcerned about gossip and petty small town drama. Yes she was sometimes lonely, but for the most part she was busy raising her fifteen month old daughter Bryony and focused on their future.

Brady has always been painted as the “good guy” even though I’ve often felt his actions spoke otherwise. (He spent the first two books using a girl for sex when he admittedly had no real feelings for her.) However, in this book I felt like Brady truly grew up and, when faced with difficult situations, he really came into his own and made choices that defined who he was. A family situation surfaced that I never saw coming and I was equal parts crushed for Brady and proud of how he handled himself.

Riley and Brady came together as friends and even though their relationship developed fairly quickly (they did know each other previously so it wasn’t totally insta-love) I still appreciated the support they provided one another. Despite a rocky start, Brady stood by Riley against the gossip and those in town who would still shun her. And Riley was there for Brady and encouraged him to follow his own path instead of the one that had been chosen for him.

After the Game was a satisfying ending to The Field Party trilogy with a strong focus on family and moving forward in spite of life’s challenges. Riley in particular proved to be so strong and resilient and I admired her for her determination to work for a solid future for her and her daughter. Fans of Abbi Glines will surely love this one.

Note: I received an advance copy of this title from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way changes my opinion of the book or the content of this review.



3.5/5 STARS

10 comments

  1. I agree with just about all of this. Definitely my favorite of the series, and I think it's for the reasons you state. The characters did a lot of growing up. They were nearing the end of their HS football days, so this was a natural evolution, but in this book, Brady's maturation was brought on by some serious life changes. I always thought he was the golden boy of the bunch, and he stepped up to the role in this one. My only complaint - Bryony, I kept googling it to try and figure out how one pronounces that.

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    1. I so agree about Brady. His family situation really forced him to step up to the plate and do some growing up. I've seen so many comments about Bryony's name (many saying they disliked it). I guess it didn't strike me as odd because I read a book as a child with a main character named Briony and it made a big impression on me. After tha I named my favorite doll Briony and the name stuck with me all these years. :)

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  2. I haven't yet tried this author but I've heard good things. It sounds like one that I would enjoy....I think I'll have to add it to my TBR list. Great review!

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    1. Thanks Samantha! Abbi Glines is one of those authors I turn to when I just want some mindless fun. :)

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  3. I've never read anything from Abbi, and honestly I'm nervous. It's not that her books don't appeal to me, I've just heard so many mixed reviews from the series, I'm really unsure of whether I want to start. Is it worth the read altogether?

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    1. So, I don't want to dissuade you from trying Abbi Glines but you just need to know what you're going to get going in. Let me put it this way: Abbi is one of my go-to authors when I want total brain candy. I've read the complete Rosemary Beach series and I loved almost every book. It's not like they're so well written (ahem) but they are totally addictive in a soap opera way. They can be cheesy and tend to follow the same pattern but I'm trash for them. If I want a good, immersive read... not Abbi. If I want mindless fun... she's the one.

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  4. It is always nice when the last book ends up being your favorite. I have yet to try this author Tanya.

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    1. Abbi is a go-to author when I want pure brain candy. She tends to follow a formula, and often the cheese factor is pretty up there, but when that's what I'm in the mood for her books are like my crack. LOL Especially the Rosemary Beach series.

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  5. I love stories of single moms and Riley sounds fantastic! Friendship to love is a favorite too! Glad you enjoyed this series!

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    1. Abbi Glines is my go-to for easy brain-candy reads. :)

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