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The Grumpy Player Next Door

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An enemies-to-lovers / sports / grumpy-sunshine / neighbor romance I, Tillie Jean Rock, am not in love with my brother’s teammate. Sure, he might have those biceps and that “I am the grouchiest of grouchy bears” smolder, and he might shovel snow off his driveway next door wearing nothing but boxer shorts and rubber boots, and he might be running a side business feeding all An enemies-to-lovers / sports / grumpy-sunshine / neighbor romance I, Tillie Jean Rock, am not in love with my brother’s teammate. Sure, he might have those biceps and that “I am the grouchiest of grouchy bears” smolder, and he might shovel snow off his driveway next door wearing nothing but boxer shorts and rubber boots, and he might be running a side business feeding all the stray goats in town, but studliness is only skin-deep. And I might flirt with him every chance I get, but I swear it’s only to annoy my brother. And him. Because Max Cole? Under all of those glorious muscles and chiseled cheekbones and searing glares beats the heart of a heartless devil. I could no sooner fall in love with a guy who treats me like a kid, and judges me at every opportunity, and sets an army of garden gnomes loose on my yard, than I could fall in love with my grandfather’s pet parrot. But I can definitely annoy him. I can one hundred percent get on board with annoying him. That’s what you do when you don’t like your neighbor, right? But you know what they say about love and hate… It’s a very thin line. Especially when the real reason I’m not in love with Max Cole—that he’s incapable of love—might not be true at all. The Grumpy Player Next door is a fun-filled enemies-to-lovers romcom featuring a ray of sunshine on a mission, an athlete who’s only grouchy around her, and an epic prank gone wrong. It stands alone and comes complete with small-town shenanigans, a goat who’s not nearly as wise as his name suggests, and proof that sometimes, love is the best kind of vengeance.


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An enemies-to-lovers / sports / grumpy-sunshine / neighbor romance I, Tillie Jean Rock, am not in love with my brother’s teammate. Sure, he might have those biceps and that “I am the grouchiest of grouchy bears” smolder, and he might shovel snow off his driveway next door wearing nothing but boxer shorts and rubber boots, and he might be running a side business feeding all An enemies-to-lovers / sports / grumpy-sunshine / neighbor romance I, Tillie Jean Rock, am not in love with my brother’s teammate. Sure, he might have those biceps and that “I am the grouchiest of grouchy bears” smolder, and he might shovel snow off his driveway next door wearing nothing but boxer shorts and rubber boots, and he might be running a side business feeding all the stray goats in town, but studliness is only skin-deep. And I might flirt with him every chance I get, but I swear it’s only to annoy my brother. And him. Because Max Cole? Under all of those glorious muscles and chiseled cheekbones and searing glares beats the heart of a heartless devil. I could no sooner fall in love with a guy who treats me like a kid, and judges me at every opportunity, and sets an army of garden gnomes loose on my yard, than I could fall in love with my grandfather’s pet parrot. But I can definitely annoy him. I can one hundred percent get on board with annoying him. That’s what you do when you don’t like your neighbor, right? But you know what they say about love and hate… It’s a very thin line. Especially when the real reason I’m not in love with Max Cole—that he’s incapable of love—might not be true at all. The Grumpy Player Next door is a fun-filled enemies-to-lovers romcom featuring a ray of sunshine on a mission, an athlete who’s only grouchy around her, and an epic prank gone wrong. It stands alone and comes complete with small-town shenanigans, a goat who’s not nearly as wise as his name suggests, and proof that sometimes, love is the best kind of vengeance.

30 review for The Grumpy Player Next Door

  1. 4 out of 5

    Pippa Grant

    Author's note, a few weeks before release: Coming July 8!! I snort-laughed so hard in the first scene... I hope you do too! Author's note, a few weeks before release: Coming July 8!! I snort-laughed so hard in the first scene... I hope you do too!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jeeves Reads Romance

    Disappointing So, I know this will probably be an unpopular opinion, but... I didn't like it. At all. I fully, 100%, expected to LOVE this book - and I just didn't. We get frequent reminders that our hero has been screwing around for years while fighting his feelings for the off-limits heroine (yuck), the storyline is more about humor than the actual romance, there were elements that felt repetitive/overly drawn out, and the payoff after the slowest of slow burns was lackluster at best. There, I Disappointing So, I know this will probably be an unpopular opinion, but... I didn't like it. At all. I fully, 100%, expected to LOVE this book - and I just didn't. We get frequent reminders that our hero has been screwing around for years while fighting his feelings for the off-limits heroine (yuck), the storyline is more about humor than the actual romance, there were elements that felt repetitive/overly drawn out, and the payoff after the slowest of slow burns was lackluster at best. There, I said it. I haven't rated a Grant book this low in literal years, and I'm not all that happy doing it this time either. The story follows Max, a guy who has been doing everything he possibly can to extinguish the attraction he feels for his teammate's sister. Max didn't have a great childhood, and his teammate, Cooper, is the person who cares about him the most now. Cooper has helped Max through his struggles with anxiety, been a friend and confidant, and has shared his community with Max for the summer. So crossing the line with Cooper's sister, Tillie Jean? Not gonna happen, no matter how much she flirts with him. Tillie Jean's been flirting with Max for years, and it's just become a part of their dynamic. But when Max moves next door to Tillie Jean for the off-season, things get all mixed up. This does have so many of the elements that I love about Grant's work, from the quirky humor and sense of found family to the slow-burning love. This series has been STELLAR, and this was simply the weak link for me. It actually felt VERY similar to Grant's last book, but it leaned into all of the things that rubbed me the wrong way about that one. Our playboy hero struggles with his feelings for an off-limits girl, but doesn't take hooking up with others off the table. There's a focus on feeling worthy and being the good-time guy only. There's the slow burn and complicated friend/family dynamics. Honestly, if that's what Cooper's book entails, then I'm not in any rush for it either (I want him to meet a stranger, someone who hasn't been around while he's a horndog - NOT the girl who is hinted at in this). What ultimately drags this one down is that we get the push/pull, the denial of feelings, the "it's just sex" routine for like 80-90% of the book, and the actually relationship development is completely glossed over. I wholeheartedly recommend Grant's books as a whole, but this definitely isn't one of the more successful ones.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jacob Proffitt

    This is third in a series and other characters are nearly constantly on-page, so definitely read in order. Also, lots of the Bro Code folks show up, too, so it wouldn't hurt to have those in your background as well. Because Tillie Jean is a woman of her milieu and that is all about Copper Valley. I made it two-thirds and the pain has to stop. The last third was only because I appreciated other Grant books and I kept waiting for things to get better. They didn't. And to be clear, this is all about This is third in a series and other characters are nearly constantly on-page, so definitely read in order. Also, lots of the Bro Code folks show up, too, so it wouldn't hurt to have those in your background as well. Because Tillie Jean is a woman of her milieu and that is all about Copper Valley. I made it two-thirds and the pain has to stop. The last third was only because I appreciated other Grant books and I kept waiting for things to get better. They didn't. And to be clear, this is all about Max being a giant jerkface with a negative motivation* that is a toxic mix of "poor me", "you just don't understand" and "can't do anything to upset Cooper" (Cooper is TJ's brother, making TJ off limits for reasons). Worse, he runs hot and cold, so sometimes he's all kissy-face, and others he's all "can't stand you" and I feel like he's always got a brood in his back pocket waiting for him to put on like an old coat you can't bring yourself to upgrade. And Grant is trying to make this about his anxiety with an abusive childhood kicker. And I might have bought into that with a lot of sympathy if I got any indication at all that he was actually trying to be better. But he totally isn't. He's acting like he can't change because he's just bad, and I'm all "hasn't he been seeing a therapist and being treated and stuff? Shouldn't this be what he's working on? Maybe?" So I just got tired of waiting for him to show some progress, any progress at all. Any. Because Tillie Jean? Yeah, she's awesome. I love, particularly, what Grant was doing with her as the talented artist and valedictorian who couldn't do the "take the world by storm thing" and worked hard to be okay with just working on being happy. Successfully! She was a freaking, no-holds delight and I wish more than anything that she had someone worthy of her efforts to win her heart. Max is not that man. So yeah. No stars. Okay, that's not a thing. One star and I resent going that high. * Negative Motivations: I kind of hate that the term "negative motivation" isn't widespread, yet. Since it isn't, I'm going to save off this little jag to append to my reviews that feature the term. Jennifer Crusie blogged about it a bit back (or, if that link doesn't work, here's a cache of the original) and it changed how I understand story. The problem with the term is that if you've never heard it before, you'd assume it meant motivations that are harmful or immoral. Not so. What it refers to is motivations not to do something. The thing is that many of us are motivated to not do things for a lot of different, perfectly valid and reasonable, reasons. The problem is that in a story motivations to not do things are a huge drag on the plot—particularly considering the fact that most negative motivations are overcome by the character simply deciding they don't care any more (or, rather, that they do care and are now motivated to do the thing). So not only do you have a counter to action but you also have a situation where to overcome it, all a character has to do is change their mind. Which means eventually, the reader is rooting for the character to get over him/herself already and do the thing we want them to do. Conflict drives story. Conflict between a reader and a main character drives readers away from story.

  4. 5 out of 5

    The Romantic Rush Blog

    Small town shenanigans, family prank hijinx gone awry, a brother’s ultimatum, sassy banter, and the chemistry between a growly baseballer and a sunshiny heroine? What’s not to love?!!? Yet another Pippa story that put a smile on my face and warmed my heart. Whenever I’m in the mood for outlandish laughs and a sweet story, Pippa Grant does the trick. I’ve not read every book in any of these series that all intermingle (Grouchy Player, Fireballs, etc), but the books are all easy to read even if yo Small town shenanigans, family prank hijinx gone awry, a brother’s ultimatum, sassy banter, and the chemistry between a growly baseballer and a sunshiny heroine? What’s not to love?!!? Yet another Pippa story that put a smile on my face and warmed my heart. Whenever I’m in the mood for outlandish laughs and a sweet story, Pippa Grant does the trick. I’ve not read every book in any of these series that all intermingle (Grouchy Player, Fireballs, etc), but the books are all easy to read even if you haven’t- easily reading like standalones for newer readers and for hardcore Pippa lovers, you’ll find all kinds of little easter egg characters and references. This one was right up my alley because I love the brother’s best friend trope- and Pippa does it so well here. Tillie Jean Jean’s brother Cooper is the ultimate romance blocking brother. Little Miss Sunshine is your quintessential lovable Pippa heroine- funny, kind, thoughtful, loving, quick to lead a helping hand. What’s not to love? Well, something, because herbrothers teammate Max Cole is not a fan, despite her best efforts to flirt and cajole him into liking her. And her latest offense? A sibling prank gone wrong that Max was on the unfortunate glittery end of. Despite being a grouch to Tillie, Max is quite amiable otherwise. Well meaning, driven, a decent guy. And he’s listening to Cooper’s yearly warning- no baseballers putting their hands on his sister. MAx has never had an issue biding by Cooper’s rule- until he ends up next door to Tille Jean in the off season, and their unexpected prank war has sparks flying. This was a fun and silly read- TJ was loads of infectious fun, and I found more substance to Max than I expected. And, I really loved TJ’s relationship with Cooper, too. he burn was a little bit slower than I like- I can only handle so much witty banter and sexual tension until I need some actual romance to go with it- and we got there, the push-pull just felt a bit too long for my impatience. But, PIppa got us there, and I just loved them together. A fun, lovable, and cute read!

  5. 5 out of 5

    BookAddict

    There's a particular element that makes a good rom-com sparkle, and I didn’t realize I had been missing it. Glitter! Glitter makes everything sparkly. For. Ev. Er. And what's a Grant book without glitter? It can’t be easy being baseball superstar Cooper Rock's sister. But Tillie Jean gives as good as she gets while still being the kind of girl we all want to be BFFs with. Or at least exist somewhere in her orbit so we can bask in her warmth and joie de vivre. She may be a master prankster, but s There's a particular element that makes a good rom-com sparkle, and I didn’t realize I had been missing it. Glitter! Glitter makes everything sparkly. For. Ev. Er. And what's a Grant book without glitter? It can’t be easy being baseball superstar Cooper Rock's sister. But Tillie Jean gives as good as she gets while still being the kind of girl we all want to be BFFs with. Or at least exist somewhere in her orbit so we can bask in her warmth and joie de vivre. She may be a master prankster, but she loves deeply and gives her love freely to everyone in her life. Although this nuisance attraction to her brother's teammate and best friend, Max Cole, seems to make her a bit irritable at times. I couldn’t help but feel a little sorry for Max while wanting to simultaneously shake him. Then I wanted to wrap my arms around him. Then shake him. And maybe knock him upside the head. The poor guy wants to fit in so badly, but he can’t seem to figure out that there’s only one thing he needs to do for that to happen. Choose it. His teammates are there. The Rock family is there. The entire freaking pirate town of Shipwreck is there, all with their arms open wide. But Max has to summon some courage, stop hiding behind his protective wall, and walk towards the love and acceptance he's needed and wanted his entire life. He may think he has a million reasons to hate Tillie Jean, but possibly he has his own nuisance attraction he's dealing with. A Pippa book is always great fun, with things like cursing parrots, prank upmanship and goatus interruptus. But the heart and emotion in this one? I felt it to my soul. The pranks and shenanigans and the quirky, colorful characters breathe life into the story, but TJ and Max are the air I need to breathe. Every step of their road to forever is so real and vivid that these two will always own permanent real estate in my heart. How any writer can whip me from laughter to tears to anxiety to unbridled happiness from one page to the next, I’ll never understand. But that is the magic this crafty penner of prose weaves into her stories, and reading them is an unparalleled, exhilarating, bewitching experience. Do yourself a favor and be sure not to miss this one. It deserves all of the glittering stars, and your romantic heart will be eternally grateful.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kelly • Kell of a Read

    DNF @ 35% - I reached my limit on juvenile pranks (so many pranks), over the top pirate “humor” that felt very forced, and endless details about their quirky town.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Prerana

    Pippa Grant literally never misses. She does not miss. I have pretty much loved every single book she has ever written, and this was no exception. And I'm out. Pippa Grant literally never misses. She does not miss. I have pretty much loved every single book she has ever written, and this was no exception. And I'm out.

  8. 5 out of 5

    1-Click Addict Support Group

    TJ and Max were amazing… I love this author’s blend of crazy hilariousness and sweet, sexy love. TJ and Max were so much fun as they joked, pranked, smiled, and sizzled their way through a courtship like no other. TJ gave as good as she got and when Max got caught up in the family shenanigans it was time to clear the air between them. Max was stoic personified but once the layers started to peel, there was a tender, loving and good guy just waiting to rock TJ’s world. And rock it he did… Grumpy me TJ and Max were amazing… I love this author’s blend of crazy hilariousness and sweet, sexy love. TJ and Max were so much fun as they joked, pranked, smiled, and sizzled their way through a courtship like no other. TJ gave as good as she got and when Max got caught up in the family shenanigans it was time to clear the air between them. Max was stoic personified but once the layers started to peel, there was a tender, loving and good guy just waiting to rock TJ’s world. And rock it he did… Grumpy met sunshine and the results couldn’t be beat! If you want a laugh out loud, sweet, enemies to lover romance than you have come to the right place! ~Diane, 5 stars

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ivy Deluca

    Quick(ish) Review I think it’s my favorite Pippa Grant book ever. The banter, the sexual tension, the grumpy tortured hero and the joys of found family mixed with blood ties, it all worked so well for me. There was nothing I’d change and that’s a rare thing for me to feel at the end of a book. Loved it, recommend it for fans of Pippa’s books in particular and romantic comedies in general.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Sheila Schoenauer

    Omg I started this book and had a seriously hard time putting it down! I absolutely LOVE Max and Tillie Jean. My only issue is that it took FOREVER for them to finally break through their own heads and come together. I kept begging for them to finally cross that off limits line! Max is the perfect growly grumpy bear. I loved his reasons for hating TJ but loved them even more when he admitted that he didn't actually hate her. Max had his issues but every time he broke out in smiles or laughter I Omg I started this book and had a seriously hard time putting it down! I absolutely LOVE Max and Tillie Jean. My only issue is that it took FOREVER for them to finally break through their own heads and come together. I kept begging for them to finally cross that off limits line! Max is the perfect growly grumpy bear. I loved his reasons for hating TJ but loved them even more when he admitted that he didn't actually hate her. Max had his issues but every time he broke out in smiles or laughter I couldn't help smiling with him. TJ was fun. I loved getting to know her better and discover the amazing person she is. I even want to tour her house and see her artwork!! Her positive attitude and happy energy was infectious! Brother's best friend is one of my favorites tropes and this one took the cake with Cooper. The guy really knew how to keep Max away from TJ. Though Max made me mad at one point I'm glad he finally went after what he wanted. And I'm glad that Grady and Annika cheered TJ and Max on. By the way... that sibling conversation when TJ was in the bath has to be one of my favorites moments. I just loved this book and adore Max and TJ. The pranks, the town of Shipwreak, all the Fireballs, Long Beak Silver, and the Rock family. They all made this book more special. Someday when Cooper gets his own book I hope he gets put through the wringer. Until then I'm so happy Max and TJ got their HEA!! *I voluntarily read an advanced copy of this book for my honest and unbiased review.*

  11. 4 out of 5

    Alley Ciz

    Seriously, every time I read a book based in Shipwreck I have my books packed ready to move there. I'm so happy Tillie Jean got her own story. She was amazing and I loved watching her and Max dance around each other, fight, and prank the ever-loving heck out of each other. Seriously, every time I read a book based in Shipwreck I have my books packed ready to move there. I'm so happy Tillie Jean got her own story. She was amazing and I loved watching her and Max dance around each other, fight, and prank the ever-loving heck out of each other.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Flavs is Mrs David Gandy♥~♥’

    4.85 Stars As always this author’s books always is a nice way to spend an afternoon. I love the hilarious parts of her books, that makes me laugh out loud. This was the same for this one. TJ, Tillie Jean Rock, has spent the last four years annoying her brother’s team mate Max Cole. She on purposely flirted with him, as she knows how annoyed he gets and bonus it annoys her brother too… And it has nothing to do with the fact that she finds Max Cole sexy. And even though he ‘hates’ her and she ‘hates 4.85 Stars As always this author’s books always is a nice way to spend an afternoon. I love the hilarious parts of her books, that makes me laugh out loud. This was the same for this one. TJ, Tillie Jean Rock, has spent the last four years annoying her brother’s team mate Max Cole. She on purposely flirted with him, as she knows how annoyed he gets and bonus it annoys her brother too… And it has nothing to do with the fact that she finds Max Cole sexy. And even though he ‘hates’ her and she ‘hates’ him she cant help but wanting to be close to him. Max Cole ‘hated’ Tillie Jean Rock… And he has a list of why he ‘hates’ her (I loved this part) She is funny, she is creative, she saves people’s lives and she just too much. Max didn’t have time for this, for her. And he is not at all attracted to her and he doesn’t at all think about her… He is focused on his career. But now he is in Shipwreck for the winter and he is living next door to her. What can he do? I loved Tillie Jean. She was just the sweetest and funniest and down to earth person. And I thought she was perfect for Max. Max I don’t know I just got this feeling that I want to hug him. I loved how she worked on his nerves even when she didn’t want to. Their back and forth banter was hilarious at time. And no matter how many times he said he hated her, it was always followed up with how much he cant stop thinking of her and how he couldn’t try anything with her as her brother would kill him. Everything about this story was just the best. It is filled with laughter, weird quirky moments and weird animals (I loved that freaking parate). If you in the mood for a quirky funny romcom then this is definitely for you 😊 ♥ Read on behalf of Fay’s Corner

  13. 5 out of 5

    Darcy

    This one was ok for me. I got tired of the same old antics that kept repeating through the whole book. It felt like I should have been laughing, but that didn't happen. I was glad that Max figured things out in the end and let himself be happy with Tillie Jean. This one was ok for me. I got tired of the same old antics that kept repeating through the whole book. It felt like I should have been laughing, but that didn't happen. I was glad that Max figured things out in the end and let himself be happy with Tillie Jean.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Laurie Anne

    If it's possible to give this book 100 stars, I would! In fact, I'd give it ALL THE STARS!! Meet Max, aka The Growly Bear who's off season neighbor in Shipwreck is the effervescent, Tilly Jean. She is sunshine, rainbows ( but NEVER unicorns!) and fun to Max's grumpy pants, never smiles ( at her anyways) gruff but hot player. Oh, but there's soooo much more to this man and I loved how his character unfolded as his layers were peeled back and we got to see the real Max. Tilly is freakin awesome and If it's possible to give this book 100 stars, I would! In fact, I'd give it ALL THE STARS!! Meet Max, aka The Growly Bear who's off season neighbor in Shipwreck is the effervescent, Tilly Jean. She is sunshine, rainbows ( but NEVER unicorns!) and fun to Max's grumpy pants, never smiles ( at her anyways) gruff but hot player. Oh, but there's soooo much more to this man and I loved how his character unfolded as his layers were peeled back and we got to see the real Max. Tilly is freakin awesome and her entire family and town are equally amazing. The relationship between her, Cooper and Grady is just #siblinggoals!! Pippa never fails to make me laugh out loud until my sides hurt with her books. Not only did this book do all of that , but there's so much more to this book than her typical rom-com. Chapter 35 did me in. Im done, an emotional mess...its beautiful. This book is possibly my favorite sports rom-com that successfully deals with a heavy topic. Bravo Pippa!! Just beautifully done. I triple dog dare you not to fall in love with Growly Bear Max or happy smiling Max!! Pippa may have made me wait with the build up on this one, but holy smokes, when the sex happens its flaming hot, like I wanted to jump my hubby right now, hot!! Favorite quotes: "I want to be where you belong. I want to be your family. I want to be your home. The same way your mine." "He's like.. my diamond in the buff."

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jenny

    You know the books that make your heart happy, make you smile and fill you up with joy? That’s this book. I’m very happy that I’m a Pippa Grant fan because her books are special reads. The emotions and the laughs are blended well and sure to make you sigh and laugh out loud. Speaking of laughing out loud, I did this several times while reading and since this is an ARC my husband, who reads Pippa Grant too, is now dying to read this one but he’s got a little wait until release day! 🤣 Tilly Jean Ro You know the books that make your heart happy, make you smile and fill you up with joy? That’s this book. I’m very happy that I’m a Pippa Grant fan because her books are special reads. The emotions and the laughs are blended well and sure to make you sigh and laugh out loud. Speaking of laughing out loud, I did this several times while reading and since this is an ARC my husband, who reads Pippa Grant too, is now dying to read this one but he’s got a little wait until release day! 🤣 Tilly Jean Rock is the famous Cooper Rock’s little sister. Cooper is great friends with Max, and they are both Fireball players. Max is attracted to Tilly Jean, but Max has a few conflicting things going on. Since Max is friends with Cooper and Max doesn’t want to mess that up. Cooper is caregiver you guys….he’s a caregiver of the very best kind, he took care of Max when he most needed it and Max won’t forget that so he stays in the sidelines where Tilly Jean is concerned. Cooper has his own worries where Tilly Jean and Max are concerned and, based on what Cooper says, doesn’t think they would “work” together but this seems to go deeper than a big brother protecting his little sister. I’m going off the rails with this review but the bottom line is, winter prank wars, Naked Max, because he likes not wearing clothes and glitter. There’s the return of an inappropriate parrot and general Shipwreck fun with the cast of characters. No matter what, if you’re a Pippa Grant fan, run to grab this as soon as it releases.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Linda (un)Conventional Bookworms

    The Grumpy Player Next Door really, really did it for me! It was so much fun, what with the pranks Tillie Jean and her brother Cooper played on each other, but also because of Max being so strongly against a relationship with her. Most of that reluctance came from Cooper being his best friend, and not wanting to lose that. The whole village of Shipwreck is a lot of fun, even if I would never, ever want to live there! Everybody knows what everyone else is up to all the time, and that just sounds e The Grumpy Player Next Door really, really did it for me! It was so much fun, what with the pranks Tillie Jean and her brother Cooper played on each other, but also because of Max being so strongly against a relationship with her. Most of that reluctance came from Cooper being his best friend, and not wanting to lose that. The whole village of Shipwreck is a lot of fun, even if I would never, ever want to live there! Everybody knows what everyone else is up to all the time, and that just sounds exhausting to me. It sure made for a lot of humorous situations, though.

  17. 5 out of 5

    jas ✧

    this was so cuutee 🥺

  18. 5 out of 5

    Anita

    Lots of laughs at the pranks between TJ and Cooper. The goats and the parrot add to Shipswrecks charm.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sam S

    This book was trying to do a lot of things, with various success. It wants to be a sports romance (yes), enemies to lovers (meh), neighbors still lovers (yes), and a romantic comedy (sometimes). It also wanted to be about anxiety and mental illness and those struggles. This was very Hit or Miss for me. Sometimes I feel like it got the difficulties and overwhelmingness of having anxiety in your life. And other times it just felt like a plot device so we could swing back and forth between max being This book was trying to do a lot of things, with various success. It wants to be a sports romance (yes), enemies to lovers (meh), neighbors still lovers (yes), and a romantic comedy (sometimes). It also wanted to be about anxiety and mental illness and those struggles. This was very Hit or Miss for me. Sometimes I feel like it got the difficulties and overwhelmingness of having anxiety in your life. And other times it just felt like a plot device so we could swing back and forth between max being nice and being an asshole. I also really struggled with Max apparently being in therapy and seeing someone to help him manage his anxiety but his solution for any time he felt overwhelmed was to just run away. Well I didn't find the humor particularly funny, it did keep me amused. Though the author was clearly trying very hard to be funny so if that's not your thing you may want to skip this book. And finally this also really leaned on the "my brother/my best friend won't approve of us being together so we can't, okay we will but we'll keep it in secret, then he finds out and this creates the big drama at the end before it all gets worked out" and that is not an enjoyable trope for me.

  20. 5 out of 5

    2OCC Reviews

    There is no doubt that Pippa Grant writes some really good books that are funny, heartfelt and swoony. This book is not one of those. Don’t get me wrong, there are funny moments, heartfelt moments and even swoony moments but you have to get through so many other words to get to that stuff, it might not be worth it. I almost gave up, but pushed through to the end. In my opinion, the last 30% of the book is the best. 3 Stars #2OCCMS

  21. 5 out of 5

    Paulette

    We always assume that athletes have superstitions or walls up so it doesn’t affect their game. However, how often do we stop and think that maybe the reason they act the way they do has nothing to do with the game and more like how they got through life. We realize “our” past affects our future and how we act or react but have you really ever thought about when an athlete is standoffish or maybe has I guess a bad streak. Maybe it has nothing to do with the game and something going on in his pers We always assume that athletes have superstitions or walls up so it doesn’t affect their game. However, how often do we stop and think that maybe the reason they act the way they do has nothing to do with the game and more like how they got through life. We realize “our” past affects our future and how we act or react but have you really ever thought about when an athlete is standoffish or maybe has I guess a bad streak. Maybe it has nothing to do with the game and something going on in his personal life. Think about when you have a bad day in work because something is bothering you at home. You try to shake it off or do everything you can to make it right. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. I would imagine athletes have the same issues. Here’s a hint…they were once regular people like you and me. In fact, they still are. They all carry personal baggage just like they carry bats and balls. This is that story. Yes, this is a Pippa book. It has all the zany craziness, awww moments and that slow burn intensity we all love. I found this one little more heart rendering. There is so much more to this author’s books than just fun loving crazy. You just need to look beyond sometimes. Well this time you don’t have to look that deep. Max’s story is right there even if he keeps it hidden from most. When you value something you don’t want to lose it, no matter what the cost, be that friendship, self preservation, even the game you love. When is the cost too much though? When do you start trusting you, and decide you’re entitled to happiness? You aren’t automatically always the way that person who sired you is even if you have their DNA. Then there’s Tillie Jean, or Trouble Jean, smart, artistic full of life and beautiful inside and out. She’s a friend to all. Takes all the jabs from people and is somewhat lost. Many times after high school we’re forced to make decisions that we have no business making. I once heard in a movie that after high school was the time to make mistakes, choose the wrong career…. You know what? They’re right. There’s no need to rush. Eventually you’ll figure it out. Meanwhile everyone is passing judgment on you. Learning that you don’t have to live down to their expectations can be a daunting task. These two have chemistry from the get go. Watching it play out is like a combo platter. It’s a little bit of everything. It will tug at all your emotions and then hit it out of the park! One of the really nice aspects of this book is we get to see many favorite characters from past stories. We even may form little predictions about what comes next! As you see I thought a lot about this story and I think I will be thinking about it long after, especially if I’m watching a sport and the player is having a bad game. I’ll be wondering if it’s bad juju or something more. I’ll be rooting for his happily ever after in the game just like Max and TJ got…unless it’s not my team. Just kidding!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Angela's Book Addiction

    The Grumpy Player Next Door (Copper Valley Fireballs #3) by Pippa Grant is a slow-burn, contemporary, enemies-to-lovers, sports romantic comedy told in first person, dual POV, featuring a grumpy hero and a sunshiny heroine. Although it’s the third book in the Copper Valley Fireballs series, it can be read as a standalone. Tillie Jean Rock has spent four years annoying her brother’s teammate, Max Cole, by flirting with him shamelessly. Not only does it irritate Max, but it also drives her brother The Grumpy Player Next Door (Copper Valley Fireballs #3) by Pippa Grant is a slow-burn, contemporary, enemies-to-lovers, sports romantic comedy told in first person, dual POV, featuring a grumpy hero and a sunshiny heroine. Although it’s the third book in the Copper Valley Fireballs series, it can be read as a standalone. Tillie Jean Rock has spent four years annoying her brother’s teammate, Max Cole, by flirting with him shamelessly. Not only does it irritate Max, but it also drives her brother Cooper crazy, which is one of her favorite things to do. Tillie Jean normally wouldn’t attempt to bother someone, but she doesn’t like the way Max treats her differently than everybody else. It’s as if her presence irritates him, turning him into a prickly grouch. She hates the fact that she finds growly-bear Max so sexy, and that as much as she wants to hate him, Tillie Jean just can’t. Copper Valley Fireballs pitcher, Max Cole, has a long list of things he hates about Tillie Jean Rock - like the fact that she’s gorgeous, always so freakin’ perfect, and the sister of his best friend on the team. She’s completely off limits, and the fact that she flirts with him for sport infuriates him. If that wasn’t bad enough, he can’t avoid her because the house he’s renting during the off-season is right next door to hers. When Max gets caught in the middle of a prank war between the Rock siblings, it sets off a chain of events that keeps him and Tillie Jean in each other’s orbit. I loved Tillie Jean and Max’s story! They were well-developed, relatably-flawed characters. Tillie Jean is fun, creative, and kind. Max is career-focused, grouchy, and standoffish - at least to Tillie Jean he is. They have fantastic chemistry and exchange hilarious banter. I enjoyed seeing Max fight his attraction as Tillie Jean tortured him with her relentless flirting and loved it when he eventually gave in. There were parts of this book that had me laughing out loud, which was exactly what I needed. I read it in one sitting. I loved being back in Shipwreck, and catching up with characters from previous books. This story is filled with the usual Pippa shenanigans, quirky characters, zany situations, and animal hijinks blended with genuine, heartfelt moments, and it has made it onto my list of Pippa favorites. This warm, feel-good story is highly recommended to anyone who needs a good laugh. *** I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC. ***

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kay Daniels (Kay Daniels Romance)

    Pippa always, ALWAYS, brings a HUGE smile to my face and she has once again made me smile, laugh, and chortle through her newest book. What is it about Growly Bears and Sunshine Girls that makes such addictive reading? Personally, I love making frowns turn upside down, probably because I live with my own grouchy man and live to see those rare smiles, just like Tillie Jean. The pranks, the family, the love, and of course the grumpy baseball player, it all made for a wonderful addition to Pippa's al Pippa always, ALWAYS, brings a HUGE smile to my face and she has once again made me smile, laugh, and chortle through her newest book. What is it about Growly Bears and Sunshine Girls that makes such addictive reading? Personally, I love making frowns turn upside down, probably because I live with my own grouchy man and live to see those rare smiles, just like Tillie Jean. The pranks, the family, the love, and of course the grumpy baseball player, it all made for a wonderful addition to Pippa's already fantastic interconnected series'. Whether you want to put Grouchy Player Next Door in the Shipwreck series, the Fireballs series, or the Boy Band series, they all fit. There is a character that makes an appearance from each of those worlds and they all made me a happy, happy reader. GPND can be read as a complete standalone if you want to get to know a lot of new characters, but if you are fan of Pippa's then jump in and enjoy the ride.  Tillie Jean is a Rock, not in the sense that she is someone to lean on for support, although she is because she's awesome, but she is related to Cooper Rock and Grady Rock, so she literally is a Rock (ok, once again, not a literal stone)...ok moving on. TJ is loved by everyone in town. Like her brothers, she is Miss Sunshine and there to always give a helping hand, so when Max Cole blately and instantly dislikes her (going back four years- yes, she's been trying for four years) she tries everything to get him to like her, unfortunately a prank gone very, very wrong doesn't help on getting to lesson Max's less grouchy side. Max Cole will smile and flirt with pretty much everyone, everyone except Tillie Jean Rock. He knows better than to even think about engaging with his teammates' sister. Cooper tells every rookie every season never, ever to even think about his dating his sister....so yeah, Max knows better. However, when Max ends up renting the house next to her during the off season, their close quarters make for interesting living engagements , that quickly escalate to prank wars and it's hard to keep Trouble Jean out of his mind. This is another huge win for Pippa Grant that brought a huge smile to my face. I loved revisiting past characters, while also meeting new ones and of course my favorite part was revisiting Shipwreck. I could seriously live in this small, wacky town.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Claire Annovazzi

    Though the recipe is more or less the same from book to book, the author proves once again that she masters it. But from the original setting–a small pirate town in the mountains–to the funny quirk that serves as a guiding thread through the story–and the romance–she shows she also knows how to make each story a new and exciting one. This time, the grumpy male character suffers from paralyzing anxiety, and the quirky female character is mostly the product of a very special upbringing–wait until y Though the recipe is more or less the same from book to book, the author proves once again that she masters it. But from the original setting–a small pirate town in the mountains–to the funny quirk that serves as a guiding thread through the story–and the romance–she shows she also knows how to make each story a new and exciting one. This time, the grumpy male character suffers from paralyzing anxiety, and the quirky female character is mostly the product of a very special upbringing–wait until you visit Shipwreck… There are weird pets too. And the return of characters from other books by the same author. Opening this book is like coming home: you know where everything is and you can relax. That doesn’t mean that you won’t be surprised. The relationship between Max and TJ is complicated, and you won’t be given all the keys all at once. Their lives have been interwined for 4 years before the beginning of the story, and the fact that they’re now neighbors–for a limited time–just brings more complications. And some epiphanies. Family is at the center of the book, with the best friend’s sister trope first, then the difference between Max’s single father and TJ’s extended family–basically the whole town. While he’s still looking for his place in the world, she has chosen one that keeps her safe from new–and maybe bad–experiences. It’s all an exercise in contrast. Even more interesting is the fact that they build themselves on each other unknowingly. Fascinating characters, unexpected situations, passionate sexy times, laugh out loud conversations… If you usually enjoy this author’s books, this one is of her bests. If you’re a neophyte, best place to start! Quickie - Series: Copper Valley Fireballs #3 (can be read as a standalone but connected to many other books by the same author) - Hashtags: #romcom #baseball romance #enemies to lovers #best friend’s sister #small town romance - Triggers: mental health problem (anxiety), mention of alcoholism - Main couple: Tillie Jean Rock & Max Cole - Hotness: 4/5 - Romance: 5/5 - + small town where half the population is related to each other? great idea - – I felt Tillie Jean’s troubles were kind of glossed over

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ga Books LoverX

    Pippa Grant, I swear you were BORN to write RomComs that speak to me! I love all of the ridiculousness and heart that all of your stories have and how they all can build on each other or be complete standalones. Seriously, ever since I read Mr. McHottie, you have been one of my favorite authors and I hope that you never change! Now, The Grumpy Player Next Door (which I am still calling The Growly Bear Next Door in my head) is the epidemy of EVERYTHING I just said above. Amazing characters, outla Pippa Grant, I swear you were BORN to write RomComs that speak to me! I love all of the ridiculousness and heart that all of your stories have and how they all can build on each other or be complete standalones. Seriously, ever since I read Mr. McHottie, you have been one of my favorite authors and I hope that you never change! Now, The Grumpy Player Next Door (which I am still calling The Growly Bear Next Door in my head) is the epidemy of EVERYTHING I just said above. Amazing characters, outlandish (but highly entertaining) situations, and a connection that just won't quit is wait awaits you with this book. Tillie Jean and Max are freaking everything and I love the comraderies of all of the secondary characters. I love the laughs, I love the feels, and I love just how freaking awesome this book made me feel once reading it! All in all, if you are looking for a Romantic Comedy Pippa Grant is always the way to go, but The Grumpy Player Next Door is DEFINITELY a good one to pick up! I give it 4.5 outta 5 stars and can't wait to see what comes next from her! PS: Thank you to Pippa Grant and Give Me Books PR for allowing me an advanced copy of the book to read and review honestly!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Shabby -BookBistroBlog

    A slow burn Romcom that keeps readers laughing and in love. Pippa has a style of writing very similar to my other fave authors and this book lives upto the hype. Full Of sexy, witty banter, flirtation and pranks, I love the opening Glitter Bomb drop and laughed loudly while walking around my neighbourhood. Sexy swoony player moves next door to the off limits sister of fellow player and Max has his Pants and hands full of this svelte vixen - Tillie Jean. But brother Cooper has been like a family to A slow burn Romcom that keeps readers laughing and in love. Pippa has a style of writing very similar to my other fave authors and this book lives upto the hype. Full Of sexy, witty banter, flirtation and pranks, I love the opening Glitter Bomb drop and laughed loudly while walking around my neighbourhood. Sexy swoony player moves next door to the off limits sister of fellow player and Max has his Pants and hands full of this svelte vixen - Tillie Jean. But brother Cooper has been like a family to max and he can't dip his wand in the family pool no matter how hard TJ flutters her eyelashes or sways her Ass at him Hilarious situations and some OTT reactions are scattered throughout. Nice job Pippa!! 4 stars for FireBalls Follow me on: Email🌻 Bookbub 🌻 Twitter🌻 Instagram🌻 Blog🌻 Facebook🌻 Amazon 🌻

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ros 🌼

    2.5 stars *I didn't realise when selecting this, that it was book 3 in a series. Maybe this is why I wasn't overly keen* This is the first book that I have listened to on audible. I needed something to keep me going whilst I attempt to sort my life out and use the treadmill and I picked The Grumpy Player Next Door at random, without reading any of the reviews. So, I slowly got through this book, approx. half an hour a day for the past few weeks. At first, I couldn’t stand this book, I don’t know i 2.5 stars *I didn't realise when selecting this, that it was book 3 in a series. Maybe this is why I wasn't overly keen* This is the first book that I have listened to on audible. I needed something to keep me going whilst I attempt to sort my life out and use the treadmill and I picked The Grumpy Player Next Door at random, without reading any of the reviews. So, I slowly got through this book, approx. half an hour a day for the past few weeks. At first, I couldn’t stand this book, I don’t know if it’s because it’s an audiobook and the softly spoken accents that elongate every single word annoyed me, or if it is just because this book is a little bit cringe, I’m not too sure. Anyway, after a few days, and after speeding up the audio considerably, I did start to get into the book a little. I think that the author was going for funny, but childish pranks don’t really do it for me. Overall it kept me going, no idea though if I would have had a better reading experience if I read this rather than listened to it – looking at some of the reviews, probably not.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ashley (Kindled Souls Book Blog)

    The Copper Valley Fireballs series is Pippa Grant at her charming, comedic best. I absolutely loved Max and Tillie Jean’s story. This book gives readers more of some of our favorite things: hot baseball players, the strong and quirky women who win their hearts, a foul-mouthed parrot, rogue goats, and plenty of shenanigans in the town of Shipwreck. The story picks up in the off-season when grumpy Max finds himself accidentally in the middle of a prank war between the sunshiny Tillie Jean and her The Copper Valley Fireballs series is Pippa Grant at her charming, comedic best. I absolutely loved Max and Tillie Jean’s story. This book gives readers more of some of our favorite things: hot baseball players, the strong and quirky women who win their hearts, a foul-mouthed parrot, rogue goats, and plenty of shenanigans in the town of Shipwreck. The story picks up in the off-season when grumpy Max finds himself accidentally in the middle of a prank war between the sunshiny Tillie Jean and her equally sunshiny brother Cooper Rock. Tillie Jean has flirted with Max for years, simply to annoy him and Cooper. All the while, Max has developed a list of reasons he hates Tillie. But all bets are off when the two become neighbors. “Kissing Tillie Jean to shut her up a few weeks ago wasn’t a fluke. It’s what I’ve wanted to do for weeks. Months. Years. I don’t have ten million reasons I hate Tillie Jean Rock. I have ten million reasons that I hate that I like her.” While this book is undoubtedly a romantic comedy, Grant also brings awareness to serious issues like anxiety and panic attacks. She does so in a way that feels organic and authentic.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Jill M

    I’ve missed reading Pippa Grant. She has such witty humor and the glitter proves it. All the glitter and more is what this story had. I loved the growly alpha and the spunky heroine. That makes for such a great story. Pippa weaved a story with combustible chemistry and laughs galore for a laugh out loud sexy rom-com. I don’t think I ever laughed so hard at all the ridiculousness of Shipwreck. Add in the sibling prank wars and this story was hysterical. I missed the first two stories in the series I’ve missed reading Pippa Grant. She has such witty humor and the glitter proves it. All the glitter and more is what this story had. I loved the growly alpha and the spunky heroine. That makes for such a great story. Pippa weaved a story with combustible chemistry and laughs galore for a laugh out loud sexy rom-com. I don’t think I ever laughed so hard at all the ridiculousness of Shipwreck. Add in the sibling prank wars and this story was hysterical. I missed the first two stories in the series but I was not lost or clueless. In fact I will be going back to catch up. Tillie and Max can only fight the chemistry for so long before all the innuendos and flirting become more. They had this connection that was building for two years and once they came together they exploded. I look forward to more stories in Shipwreck and these amazing characters.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey

    Pippa is an author I can always count on to make me laugh. She’s also great at that sexual tension. She makes you want it to happen and need it to continue. She creates these amazing towns and side characters that you want to know everything about. I love love love Tilly Jean. She is one of the most well rounded and emotionally smart characters I’ve ever read. She does what makes her happy. Simple as that. She also has this absolutely incredible relationship with her brothers. I love their relat Pippa is an author I can always count on to make me laugh. She’s also great at that sexual tension. She makes you want it to happen and need it to continue. She creates these amazing towns and side characters that you want to know everything about. I love love love Tilly Jean. She is one of the most well rounded and emotionally smart characters I’ve ever read. She does what makes her happy. Simple as that. She also has this absolutely incredible relationship with her brothers. I love their relationship so much. Also getting to be back I’m shipwreck was amazing. One thing I truly adored was having a character with anxiety issues. Not only that but having it be the male character. I think it was a really smart choice and something that really spoke to me. Especially seeing him open up about it. Recognizing and being open about your anxiety is life changing. I thought it was very well Done and made me just fall in love with Max. You give me a grumpy man bear and I will always be all in.

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