{Review} The Hard Count by Ginger Scott


{Review} The Hard Count by Ginger ScottThe Hard Count by Ginger Scott
Publisher: Self-Published on July 15, 2016
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance (YA)
Pages: 335

Our Rating

5 Stars

Nico Medina’s world is eleven miles away from mine. During the day, it’s a place where doors are open—where homes are lived in, and neighbors love. But when the sun sets, it becomes a place where young boys are afraid, where eyes watch from idling cars that hide in the shadows and wicked smoke flows from pipes.

West End is the kind of place that people survive. It buries them—one at a time, one way or another. And when Nico was a little boy, his mom always told him to run.

I’m Reagan Prescott—coach’s daughter, sister to the prodigal son, daughter in the perfect family.
Life on top.
My world is the ugly one. Private school politics and one of the best high school football programs in the country can break even the toughest souls. Our darkness plays out in whispers and rumors, and money and status trump all. I would know—I’ve watched it kill my family slowly, strangling us for years.

In our twisted world, a boy from West End is the only shining light.
I hated him before I needed him.
I fell for him fast.
I loved him when it was almost too late.

When two ugly worlds collide, even the strongest fall. But my world…it hasn’t met the boy from West End.

The Hard Count by Ginger Scott

The Hook:  Reagan and Nico live in two different worlds just a few miles apart. He’s from the wrong side of the tracks, on scholarship at a school his family could never afford. She’s the daughter of the revered football coach and sister of the quarterback, living a life filled with opportunity and privilege. And every time these two open their mouths around each other, it’s to argue.

When Reagan’s brother is injured and benched, it’s Reagan who points out Nico to her father. Having been at her father’s right hand through his career, she knows unpolished talent when she sees it. She’s got the answer to her father’s dilemma and a great subject for her documentary.


The Verdict:  Nico’s not at the school to play football; he’s there to learn and make something of his life, a life that could easily have gone the other direction. With a brother who got into more trouble than he should have survived before heading off to the military, Nico is the one who looks out for his sister and little niece at home. And both he and Reagan are about to get a lesson in the politics of money and prestige.

Reagan is a bit on the naive side, but her eyes are opened when Nico takes the field with her father’s team. She already knows how intelligent he is and has seen how skilled he is, but as he begins to play a bigger role in her days, she also sees what he’s up against. He’s the poor, Mexican kid in the rich, mostly white school, and no matter what he brings to the game, the system works against him.

It’s impossible to describe The Hard Count just as a romance. There are lessons in class and race, all the innocence of young love, the politics of a school that’s controlled by big money, the rise of crime in neighborhoods filled with good but financially strapped people, and the meaning of family and loyalty. Football, of course, plays a big part in it, and at times it even works as a metaphor for everything else that’s happening, but it’s not just page after page of plays. It’s more like Firday Night Lights, in the sense that the setting is a game but the story is in the characters and the incredible emotions they evoke.

Ginger Scott writes young love the way it’s experienced — sweet and idealistic, overwhelming and seemingly impossible, and as bumpy and unpredictable as life itself. I’ve devoured her other books and impatiently awaited the next ones, and with each new read, I’ve felt like I’ve found a new favorite. But The Hard Count is so much more than I’ve ever loved in a book before it.

The Breakdown
Cover Design
5 star rating
Plot & Pace
5 star rating
5 star rating
Style & Editing
5 star rating
Story Conclusion
5 star rating
Overall Rating 5 star rating

About Ginger Scott

Ginger Scott is a writer and journalist from Peoria, Arizona. She is the author of four young and new adult romances, with her fifth title, This Is Falling, set to release in late August 2014.

Scott has been writing and editing for newspapers, magazines and blogs for more than 15 years. She has told the stories of Olympians, politicians, actors, scientists, cowboys, criminals and towns. For more on her and her work, visit her website at http://www.littlemisswrite.com.

When she's not writing, the odds are high that she's somewhere near a baseball diamond, either watching her son field pop flies like Bryce Harper or cheering on her favorite baseball team, the Arizona Diamondbacks. Scott is married to her college sweetheart whom she met at ASU (fork 'em, Devils).

Author: ysar

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