Review: Game On by Michelle Smith

(Lewis Creek #2)
By: Michelle Smith
Publisher: Bloomsbury Spark
Publication Date: Aug. 16, 2016
Genre: Young Adult

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As king of baseball in the small town of Lewis Creek, Eric Perry can have any girl he wants and win every game he plays. But when a fight lands him in jail, he’s only got one more strike before his baseball career is over for good. His only chance for redemption? The girl next door, Bri Johnson.

Bri hasn’t talked to Eric in months—for starters, she’s been too busy dealing with her jerk of an ex-boyfriend, not to mention the fact that Eric’s been preoccupied trying to drink every keg in the country dry. But when he needs a way to stay on the team, she proposes a plan: if he helps her out with community service, he can stay on the team. At first it’s a nightmare—Eric and Bri stopped being friends years ago, surely that was for a good reason, right? But as volunteering turns to bonding over old memories of first kisses under the stars, they start to have trouble remembering what pushed them apart.

In a town as small as Lewis Creek, nothing stays secret for long and their friendship and romance might mean bad news. But in this final, tumultuous spring before graduation, Eric and Bri are about to realize that nobody’s perfect alone, but they might just be perfect together.



My thoughts…

Eric is finally stepping up this year and will be the starting pitcher for his school’s baseball team. While most people think football is “the” sport, in Lewis Creek, it’s all about baseball. The boys on the team are the golden boys and Eric is the head golden boy. However, since it’s his first year, everyone is looking at him. It doesn’t help that he’s also the pastor’s son. So, needless to say he’s under a magnifying glass. When he gets into some hot water, his neighbor and once best friend steps up and throws him a bone. She offers to take him with her to the local soup kitchen to volunteer on weekends. However, with the more time they spend, the more the lines between friendship and more become blurred.

Game On was not what I expected it to be. I thought it would just be a cute young adult romance about old friends. However, Eric is down on himself a lot. He doesn’t feel worthy of being on the team, and doesn’t see himself excelling in life in general. It doesn’t help that Lewis Creek is a small town full of gossipers who like nothing more than to smile in your face as they backhandedly trash talk you. Add onto that that Eric’s the pastor’s son and the “star” of the baseball team and you have a whole heck of a lot of pressure. Which results in him getting drunk, a lot, and hooking up with a bunch of girls. One thing I did not care for is that at one point it’s brought up that he was driving while drunk. The cop that pulled him over and his coach let him go with a warning! WHAT?! They didn’t notify the parents, they didn’t give him community service, they just threw him in the drunk tank for a bit. I’m sorry but that boggled my mind.

Meanwhile, we have Bri who seems to be put-together, and happily dating the center-fielder from the baseball team. However, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. She’s always home alone since her father is a truck driver and her mother is out of the picture. Plus, her boyfriend is verbally abusive to her. After months of taking the abuse and believing the things he says, she’s finally able to break away from him with the help of her friend and Eric. But even though she’s no longer with him, he still gets under her skin and a lot of the damage is already done. Watching Bri struggle within herself was a hard thing to watch but it made her character whole and believable.

“If one person says something, it hits you hard. If someone else chimes in with the same thing, even if it’s years later, you start to wonder if it’s true.”

One thing I didn’t care for and that I had no idea about was that this kind of revolves around God and religion. I mean, I didn’t know that Eric was the pastor’s son, so I had no idea there would be a lot of God talk in the story. They were always saying things that revolved around God, Jesus, angels, and heaven. I wouldn’t have minded if it was only a few times but I honestly had to take a moment to look up the book to see if I was reading a Christian romance novel or something. I’m still not 100% if I was or wasn’t.

Aside from all the God talk, I did enjoy this book. I wish the ending was a little bit better. It kind of just stops without giving you a heads up of where the characters are going in life. So, I do wish there was an epilogue at the end to kind of wrap it all up. However, maybe because this is a series we will see snippets of Bri and Eric down the road.

Favorite quote…

“It’s probably a bad sign when the hangover hits before you even leave the party.”




8 Thoughts on “Review: Game On by Michelle Smith

  1. Oh wow the getting caught and only getting a warning is crazy.

  2. Oh wow… this sounds light a bit of an emotional read! It’s sad that Eric feels down like that. And Bri! Oh gosh, she deserved better too!

  3. Never heard about this series before, but this second book seem interesting. That part where the cop let him go without any consequences puzzles me too, but I guess it happens sometimes when you’re a star/golden boy. I like that it’s not a cute story but that there are emotional aspects of the story. Sounds like my kind of read. Thanks for your honest review. Glad you liked it for the most part.

  4. So is this a Christian romance kinda thing?

    • I honestly don’t know. There were a lot of references to God and angels. Just a lot of religious sayings. I don’t know if the author meant for it to come off that way but, for me, it did.

  5. “I wouldn’t have minded if it was only a few times but I honestly had to take a moment to look up the book to see if I was reading a Christian romance novel or something. ” I laughed so hard at this! The storyline sounded perfect, but it really is a turn off when the ending was rushed. Great review! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it! 😛

  6. This sounds like a really cute YA contemporary ( and I do love me some YA contemporary) but all the religious talk is kind of off-putting to me. I’m actually glad you mentioned it because otherwise I probably would have ended up annoyed if I gave this one a try. Great review, Kristin!

  7. Hmm. I’m happy you liked it overall, Kristin, but I’d be put off with the religious element since it wasn’t mentioned. It’s not that I mind it, really, but I want to be aware of it going in. It does sound sweet though.

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