Cover Image: Carrie Soto Is Back

Carrie Soto Is Back

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Member Reviews

Taylor Jenkins Reid does it again… while reading Malibu Rising I loved Carrie Sotto, I wanted to know more about her. Now with this follow up I was even more excited to get this preview. I don’t know if it’s just me but I love how she cross characters in her books and am always paying attention to find the links or hints. This book drew me in from the beginning and didn’t let go. I read it in 2 days then was so sad I finished it. Taylor is a fabulous storyteller and I tend to forget they are characters and not a memoir because they feel so real to me.
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✨Advance Copy Book Review ✨Carrie Soto is Back - Taylor Jenkins Reid ✨5/5 ⭐️✨
Publication Date: 8/30/2022
Genre: Adult Fiction
Synopsis: Swipe
Read If You Like: 
- Sports based Adult Fiction with Closed Door Romance

Synopsis: Carrie Soto is the World’s greatest (retired) tennis player…until Nikki Chan swoops in and beats her record. Retired, Carrie knows this is the moment she’s been dreading, and can’t believe it’s happening. What to do but come out of retirement? But can she win back her record, and handle the pressures, especially when she’s the ‘old’ age of 37, and, let’s be honest, none of the other players really like her? 

- Firstly, I am *not* a tennis player, and I enjoyed this novel immensely. It’s fast paced, you’re drawn into the tennis world quickly, and the technicalities of the game are explained pretty simply. That being said, if you don’t like sports novels, maybe just know that that’s what this is first and foremost, a novel about a really great tennis player (who is a gem of a character, by the way), and her comeback. 
- Carrie Soto is everything. Her comeback is not only on the tennis court, but also as a person, and her character ARC is written so well in this by Reid. You hate her but love her, then hate her again, and are rooting for her the next moment. 
- The side characters in this novel are done supremely well. There aren’t many, which actually looking back on it now, in any other novel I would’ve found a little strange, but here it works because this is Carrie’s world, we’re just living in it, and she only has a few close people to her. 
- The ending was a gem. It’s so easy to picture this novel as a movie, and that’s what this should be, a sports movie or show (anyone ready for Daisy Jones & The Six???). 
- Closed door romance and emotional parts
- ***Spoilerish!!!???*** Speaking of novel references, we get several here to Taylor Jenkins Reid’s other novels, which fans of her novels will absolutely cherish. ***End Spoiler***

At the end of the day, this was a great read, Carrie’s character was my favorite part of this novel, and you should read it. Also, peep the audiobook, there are some really great narrators on it. Thank you to @penguinrandomhouse and @netgalley for the advance copy of this ebook in exchange for an honest review!
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Carrie Soto is a retired professional tennis player. She’s 37 and she’s been out for 6 or 7 years. She was injured, had to take some time off, and decided to retire. A few years later there’s a younger player that is about to surpass one of Carrie’s records. She decides to come out of retirement to stop it. This is the story of what it takes to be not just a professional athlete but the best of the best—the personal sacrifices, the unrelenting training, the mental games, and the desire to keep pushing. It’s all so very intense. 

We first met Carrie as a villain in Malibu Rising. However, when she actually showed up at the Riva’s house party she was amazing. She was an absolute highlight of that book. I was excited to get to know her. She’s tough and honest and totally herself. Also, the relationship between Carrie and her dad Javier was lovely. It was refreshing to read about such a strong bond. 

This (along with all Taylor Jenkins Reid’s books) would be a fantastic book club selection. Lots of layers to dissect and it’s an easy, engaging read. Thanks to @netgalley and @penguinrandomhouse for an advanced copy of this book. It will be released on 8/30/22.
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I have loved every book Taylor Jenkins Reid has written and last year when I found out her newest would be about a tennis player, it jumped to the top of my most anticipated books list! When I got the Netgalley notification that I was approved for this, I literally squealed! I loved everything about this book - the writing of the tennis matches was so fantastic, I felt like I was court side. I had trouble sleeping each night I read this and now that I’m writing this review, I think it was because of the book - I mean that in the best way, I was so wired that the competitor (competition is my top strength according to Clifton SrengthsFinder) in me couldn’t calm down. I don’t want to say too much of the plot but just know it hit every emotion and is my favorite book I’ve read this year and will hard to top. Thank you @ballantinebooks and @penguinbooks for the e-ARC!
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Carrie Soto Is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid is a bombshell! 
And it is going to blow the book world up! And I can't wait for it! 

Incredible. Intoxicating. Unforgettable. Truly one of the most remarkable stories I have ever had the pleasure of reading.

The characters are phenomenal
Our protagonist is someone who is so interesting that you just want to root for in every way possible. She is flawed, determined and so strong... In ways I believe we all can relate to at some point. 

The pacing was amazing, the plot, the characters, the writing. 
TJR's writing style is something wonderful! Beautiful prose throughout this whole book.
I love the way she grabs you from the first moment until the very end.

This book is full of so many different feelings that it will leave you wanting for more. 

A beautiful, emotional, and heart jerking story.... 
But you'll love everything about Carrie Soto Is Back! 

“I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.” 

Random House,
Thank You for your generosity and gifting me a copy of this amazing eARC!
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So grateful for the opportunity to read this one early! I couldn't imagine liking a Taylor Jenkins Reid book as much as Evelyn Hugo or Daisy Jones, but I loved Carrie's story as much, if not more. It was such a perfect depiction of an amazing female athlete who is unapologetic (in the best way), and it makes me want to watch all the tennis and learn the stories of all the players. The relationships with her father and Bowe were lovely, and seeing her grow and mature through those, in addition to through her sport, made this a can't-put-down-until-I'm-done book for me.
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So first of all I hate tennis. I don’t understand it, I don’t enjoy it. However, I DEVOURED this book. There is just something so strategic and addicting to how TJR writes.  

I loved the hints of crossovers to Daisy Jones, Malibu and her other books. It just made it so fun. Reminds me of the little hints Pixar gives in their movies to other movies of theirs (don’t judge, I have a toddler). 

I don’t want to give spoilers and you can read the synopsis but, here to tell you this is an addicting read. It is perfect to devour in 24 hours and you will feel all of the emotions for Carrie Soto throughout her journey. 

Also, guess I’ll start watching some tennis now. 

Thank you to NetGalley and Random House Publishing/Ballantine for my free ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.
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Another captivating book by TJR! I don't know how she managed to keep me so interested in tennis for the entire book, but she did.
Carrie Soto (whose name you might recognize from Malibu Rising) is one of the best tennis players in the world, but she wants to be number one. She wants it so badly that she comes out of retirement years later in order to play one more round of tournaments. 
This book is very sports-centered. The focus is definitely her training, coaches, and tournaments. It's also about her relationship with her dad, who coached her when she was young and is an inspiration to her.
I liked Carrie as a character a lot. She has a strong personality and a tough exterior. However, I didn't feel as strongly connected to her as some of the other protagonists in the Mick Riva-verse. I would say for my personal taste, this book was better than Malibu Rising, but not on the level of Evelyn Hugo or Daisy Jones. Still, I read it in a day without stopping to breathe and I spent the last portion of the book crying, so I would call this a success. A solid 4.5 stars from me!
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC!
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Thank you to Random House and Netgalley for an ARC of Carrie Soto is Back, publishing on 8/30/22. Taylor Jenkins Reid is a favorite so I was thrilled to get an early copy.

Carrie Soto is a 37-year-old retired tennis player with the most titles in the sport. However, Nicki Chan is about to surpass Soto's record, and she decides to come back to challenge Chan. With the help of her father as her coach, can Carrie hold her reign as champion? 

This was a great read. Although it was tennis heavy, the descriptions of each match had a movie-like quality that made me feel like I was playing alongside Carrie. I did not really like Carrie as a MC, mostly because I felt that I didn't really understand her until the end of the novel. She was very closed-off and dogged in her goals. What I loved about the book was how Jenkins Reid layered themes of misogyny, casual sexism and ageism throughout the novel without it feeling like it was a book about either of those topics. It also implored me to think about why I disliked Carrie, and made me realize that this is likely what Jenkins Reid was after when she crafted the character. Some of the dialogue was a bit choppy and the first half started off a bit slow. Otherwise, I really enjoyed this book!
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Just Like Malibu Rising, I was totally committed to this book by the first chapter. I played tennis in high school, so I really enjoyed reading a book that focused so heavily on the sport. I enjoyed Carrie's subtle character development and stubbornness, she was so fun to follow!
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Absolutely incredible & everything I didn't know I needed in a book. Carrie Soto is one of my favorite protagonists I've ever read about. She is strong-willed and sturbborn. I admired her personal growth and was rooting for her every step of the way. I loved literally everything about this book - the genuine & heartfelt father/daughter relationship, sports commentary, slow burn romance, and heart-racing tennis matches. TJR is a genius.
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Taylor Jenkins Reid is officially one of my top all time writers. I have loved all of her books and look forward to every story she is going to tell. 

I know NOTHING about tennis, but enjoyed Carrie fighting for her tennis titles but refusing to cater to the media. She is a Battle Axe!

After winning every title she is expected to retire and sail off into the sunset. . Right? Well, Carrie refuses to take take the easy road. She jumps back into training and challenges her body beyond its capabilities to try to win Wimbledon again. She also discovers that it is okay to be loved and needed by others along the way.

Bitingly feminist-forward. It asks us to examine how we think about women in sports. Why must women be "likable"? Why are men held to different standards? Why are women expected to want less? 

I held my breath through tennis matches when I care nothing about sports. I laughed through trash-talk, cried through the ending and just had that feeling at the end of a book where you almost feel hungover you were so drawn in!  I loved it!!

Reid has written another fully fleshed character that makes this book feel like a memoir. Was Carrie real? I genuinely want to look her up online. 

This book made me laugh, cry, and everything in between! Love!!
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Thank you to NetGalley, Random House - Ballantine, and the Achilles of fiction herself, Taylor Jenkins Reid, for the opportunity to enjoy an ARC of Carrie Soto is Back.

Carrie Soto is frequently the villain of women’s tennis on the ATP tour, and justifiably so. Everyone hates to love her and loves to hate her. There is no warmth to her game, an ice queen who takes no prisoner each match, and it’s evident she relishes her role as the tour antagonist. Carrie says what she feels, often mistaking honesty for empathy, but her in mind, she has earned the right to speak so brusquely, especially when you take into consideration her record-setting 20 Grand Slam wins. After a short-lived retirement where Carrie exited the game near the top, she finds herself returning to the game she loves in hopes of reclaiming her major wins record from new kid on the block Nicki Chan. Has Carrie “Battle Axe” Soto lost her razor sharp edge, or can she surmount one of the greatest comeback stories in sports history? She has four tournaments to find out!

Carrie is your blueprint TJR character: eccentric and exceptional with so many qualities readers will relate to. I will say I expected more background development into Carrie becoming Carrie, her mother and childhood, her friends, her relationships. Compared to Daisy and Evelyn, I almost questioned if my understanding of what made Carrie Carrie was fabricated due to the lack of depth. But then again, that’s Carrie. She is manipulative and strategic in what version of herself she shows to the world as to not give away any weakness her opponent can exploit. But the real star of the show for me is Javier, her dutiful coach and the paradigm of fatherhood. Javier embodies what it means to selflessly take on the role of being a parent while still preserving a piece of his pre-child identity. I loved all his passages and the advice he gave Carrie, both personally and professionally. 

This book is definitely different from past TJR classics. She dove headfirst into the waltz that is tennis, and I think she fully captured the beauty and complexity of the game. I hope readers take this into consideration when enjoying sports-related fiction. Without a doctoral analysis of the game, we wouldn’t fully understand the lengths Carrie went to to become great. And Carrie is greatness personified.

I will be posting a review rightfully hyping up this release on my TikTok (@emmmmmreads) the week of 6/13. Please check it out!
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TJR’s style of writing just works, she’s got you rooting for a complicated character that you just want to yell at for part of the book and just hug and cheer for for the majority of the book. This book runs through all the emotions! There are so many things I loved and not enough time to write them all out. I do love how the different forms of writing are so natural in the book, there are transcripts of interviews, newspaper columns and everything just works and conveys different points of view so well. 
I usually don’t love an ebook, but for an ARC of this, I’m 100% gonna be on board.
I cannot wait to recommend this to everyone that comes into the library when it comes out!!!! Carrie Soto is back!!!!!!
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I received a copy of this ARC in exchange for an honest review. I am not a fan of sport stories. They are so predictable: protagonist has a setback and triumphs in the end. However, this is a sport story in the incredible hands of Taylor Jenkins Reid. The tennis star is not a sweet, blue-eyed, blond Russian. Carrie is a Latina. She has faced challenges in her life including losing her mother. at a young age But she has her father who is (was) a tennis superstar. This book delves into the discipline, challenges, relationships, public image, and public opinion of being a tennis star. Reid skillfully crafts the character Carrie and weaves  a compelling story that you will not want to miss, Even if it is a sport story.
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OMG Get this book! You do not have to love tennis, sports or even. have read any of the other books (some nice Easter eggs in the book though) and I guarantee you will love Carrie Soto.

Carolina Soto is the GOAT - she is the best female tennis player the world has ever seen. She is no-nonsense, tough as nails and uniformly unliked.  Once she retired, she was happy to live out her life watching tennis from a far with her beloved tennis coach father Javi.  But then another great has come along and smashed Carrie's record. Carrie is one of those people who's identity is tied into their job. She has no choice but to reenter the 37!

Taylor Jenkins Reid paints a beautiful picture of a father daughter relationship and the hard realities of the life on an elite athlete. If you love an underdog, a great portrait of familial love, a tense story with a little romance, then Carrie Soto is Back is for you!  #CarrieSotoisBack #RandomHouse #Ballantine #netgalley
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"I know this court. I know the bad bounces. I know the wind. I know the stickiness under my feet in this humidity. After all, this is my grass. And it is time for Ingrid Cortez to get off my lawn." - Carrie Soto

Well, finally my stubbornness serves me (tennis pun intended). I could not finish Malibu, or get into Evelyn, or even Daisy and One True Loves yet I just had to try this one. I don't know why. I'm not into sports books and definitely could not care less about tennis and this book is all tennis. I mean 98% is the play by play of tennis matches AND YET....... this was a home run for me. Or a grand slam? I think that's better. Should I be ashamed to really hate watching sports but love playing them? Whatever. 

The premise: Carrie Soto is a tennis champ from a young age. Her father Javier is an immigrant who starts playing tennis in Cali and then teaching and then being so good at it he is sought after as a coach for others and when he hands his daughter a tennis racket at like age 2 he proclaims that she will be the best in the world and starts coaching her accordingly. This is a father daughter book. This is also about what should be an unlikeable protagonist. Carrie (Carolina) is annoyingly arrogant and insufferable with her attitude and inability to relate to other people. She thinks in terms of what will help her win. And that's it. All else is bullshit. It's like she has zero feelings but of course she does. They've just been compartmentalized because tennis and training are her life and there's no room for all that. She and her dad have a falling out in the mid 80's....

------------- TIME OUT
can we just talk about how because this is set in the late 70's, 80's and early 90's the will probably be categorized as historical fiction???? LIKE WTF???!!! 
-------TIME IN

...she fires her dad because he realistically says that she might not win and her ego couldn't tolerate that but the rest of the book, the last 3/5th's are about her asking him to coach her for a comeback one last time after a 5 year hiatus when pro player Nicki Chan ties Carrie's record and Carrie will not stand for that. 
Yes there is a tiny bit of a love story to help round out the book, and thank god for that since if it was only straight tennis I probably wouldn't have gotten to like Carrie all that much. She did feel real because women who want things and are even very full of themselves are often called bitches and Carries nickname is The Bitch or if you're being nice, The Battle Ax. She also proves that women who are aging are STILL FUCKING AWESOME.

So this was a win for me. (trying to keep with the sports theme) and I will definitely give Ms Reid more innings to bat at cuz I don't forfeiting.
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I never in a million years expected to get to read this arc. I screamed a little and did a happy dance when I saw the email in my inbox declaring that I was one of the lucky few who would get to read an arc of Carrie Soto Is Back. So, thank you to NetGalley, Taylor Jenkins Reid, Ballantine Books, and anyone and everyone involved in this process. I feel like the luckiest lady alive. 

When I first saw the synopsis for TJR's new book, I wasn't immediately won over like I was with her previous books. It wasn't a character or plot I was particularly interested in, but I was still going to read it because I adore Taylor Jenkins Reid's writing and would read her grocery list if she published it. Because of all of that, I have to say that I am delightfully surprised after having read Carrie Soto Is Back. It was much more than what I had anticipated and a lovely story of winning and losing. 

I boil the story down to winning and losing, but the actual synopsis is much more clever. Essentially, Carrie Soto is a world-renowned tennis player, the best that tennis has ever seen. When she retires, she has shattered every world record and claimed twenty Grand Slam titles. None of that means that she is well-liked though, Carrie has certainly burned a lot of bridges to get to where she is. But six years after her retirement, a stunning player named Nicki Chan is poised to take all of Carrie's records. At the age of thirty-seven, ancient in the tennis world, Carrie decides to come out of retirement to defend her record. She rehires her father as her coach to prove that Carrie Soto is BACK. 

Carrie Soto is different from TJR's other books in ways that are hard to put into words, but I love that there is a common theme of women and how they deal with the spotlight. There is a lovely letter from the editor at the beginning of the book that puts it better than I can, "Evelyn manipulates it. Daisy is broken by it. Nina wants to hide from it. And Carrie... well she couldn't care less about it." When Carrie comes out of retirement she earns the moniker of "The Bitch" and a rallying cry of "The Bitch is back" comes out of it. Something that a friend (who also received an arc) and I were discussing was how much we love that Carrie is a bitch and she owns it. Being a bitch is not something to be ashamed of. It is nice to see a woman reclaim something that was intended to take her down and instead it becomes her rallying cry. Carrie is a bitch and doesn't care and I love her for it. 

One of the ways that I feel that this book is different from the others is because of its feeling of solitude. It is all about Carrie which I feel is unusual for a TJR book. Normally she writes these huge casts of characters with so many personable side characters, but that is not the case here. But in this one it is Carrie. Almost completely just her. That solitary feeling backs up some of the plot points of Carrie alienating herself from the other female tennis players. You feel her loneliness. Besides Carrie, we only get meaningful contributions from her dad, Javier, and Bowe. There is not an extensive cast of side characters in this one. You get three characters, take it or leave it. 

There is so much energy and anticipation steadily throughout the entire book. The pacing is phenomenal and I read the entire book in one sitting. I don't know if I felt this way because I am a former athlete, but I could feel the adrenaline from Carrie's matches. It permeates off the pages. I swam all my life and it is very similar to tennis because they can both be very solitary sports. Anytime I got in the water to swim there was a clearing of my mind and a lasered in focus on winning and doing my best. I could sense that same thing from Carrie during her matches. I didn't know anything about tennis going into this book and I still don't know much, but it is a very interesting sport. The structure of the writing and the format of the matches within the book was incredibly strong. 

In every TJR book, there is a relationship that carries the soul of the book. In this case, it was Carrie's relationship with her father. Javier and Carrie have such a unique father-daughter relationship and it was interesting seeing the father/daughter v. athlete/coach dynamic of the same relationship. Javier and Carrie's relationship is the most important one in the book and the one that experiences the most growth and development. It would not be the same book without Javier. 

My one complaint about this entire book was that it was almost too much about tennis. I didn't feel as much investment in Carrie as a character as I felt for the other characters in TJR's books. There wasn't as much depth in this book and it wasn't as intricate as say, Malibu Rising or The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. I don't think that Carrie was a very complex character. While she did have a lot of growth, it was all based on tennis. I would have at least liked to have one subplot that was not in some way related to tennis. This isn't exactly a negative thing, more of a nitpicky thing on my part. I still think it is very much worth the read, I just don't think it will have the impact that some of TJR's other books have had. 

One last final thing. Something I deeply love about TJR's books is the references to her other books. There were so many references to Nina Riva in Carrie Soto and a sneaky Daisy Jones reference. There wasn't a real reference to The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo unless you count the fact that Vivant Magazine was featured. I loved the interconnectedness of all of her books and can't wait to see who the subject of her next book will be.

This is a phenomenal book and I feel very lucky to have read it. I hope everyone will give it the chance it deserves on August 30. Thank you to NetGalley, Ballantine Books, and Taylor Jenkins Reid. You all have my whole heart.
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📖 Carrie Soto Is Back
✍️ Taylor Jenkins Reid
🗝️ Historical Fiction
#️⃣ 384 pages
🗓️ 08/30/22

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Carrie Soto has trained her whole life to become what her father always knew she would be…the greatest tennis player of all time. Now, it’s been five years since she retired with more grand slam titles than anyone in the history of the game…and Nikki Chan has just tied her record. The ultimate competitor, Carrie decides to make her return to tennis to take back her crown. In an incredibly emotional + vulnerable story, TJR asks the question, “how do you define yourself, if not as a champion?”

Carrie Soto is back, TJR is Back, my love of tennis is back (when does Wimbledon start??), it’s all BACK. I cannot say enough good things about this book… I think it takes the top spot for me over Evelyn Hugo. They’re both so good, but Carrie would never let me allow them to share the #1 spot so I feel like I have to choose. Anyways, I’m rambling, but I just can’t put down into words what this book made me feel because I am not TJR and I don’t have that kind of ability. All I can say is that if you love flawed + authentic characters, beautiful + tumultuous father/daughter relationships and incredible writing/storytelling, you will love this book. It is VERY heavy on the tennis (which, as a former tennis player, I adored), but if you not into sports, it may be a little sports overload for you. I would still highly, highly, highly recommend this book to just about everyone. By far my favorite book this year.

🎾 Single POV
🎾 Character driven
🎾 Emotional, vulnerable storytelling
🎾 Second chance romance storyline
🎾 Explores father/daughter relationships
🎾 Explores what it means to be the best
🎾 Sports fans will love
🎾 Extremely quotable

#caitsquietplace #caitsquietplacereviews #cqphistoricalfiction #cqpfiction #taylorjenkinsreid #carriesoto #carriesotoisback #ballantinebooks #netgalley
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𝐂𝐚𝐫𝐫𝐢𝐞 𝐒𝐨𝐭𝐨 𝐈𝐬 𝐁𝐚𝐜𝐤 𝐑𝐞𝐯𝐢𝐞𝐰 🎾 

𝓟𝓾𝓫 𝓓𝓪𝓽𝓮: August 30th 2022
𝓟𝓾𝓫𝓵𝓲𝓼𝓱𝓮𝓻: @penguinrandomhouse 

𝐓𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐬 𝐈 𝐋𝐢𝐤𝐞𝐝:
Strong Female Protagonist
Father Daughter Relationship 
Females Dominating Sports 

This book is 💯 about TENNIS 🎾.
Now that I got that off my chest let me give you my thoughts 💭! 

The book is very well written and the pacing made it is easy for me to get through. 

There is enough character and relationship development to get hooked. BUT AGAIN, this book is mainly about the game of tennis 🎾. 

While, I definitely loved the father daughter dynamic and the (at times) harsh realities for females in the professional sports industry — the tennis talk was a little excessive for me. 

Overall, I found the book to be enjoyable and I finished it in a few days. I can definitely see this book being picked up for a 🎥 too! 

Side 📝 for those of you that are sick of 𝑴𝒊𝒄𝒌 𝑹𝒊𝒗𝒂 - 𝑹𝒊𝒗𝒂 is always allowed to make an appearance in my 📖😉

Thank you @netgalley & @randomhouse for my ARC of #CarrieSotoIsBack #TaylorJenkinsReid #RandomHouse #Netgalley
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