cover image No Time to Explain: Barefoot William, Book 6

No Time to Explain: Barefoot William, Book 6

Kate Angell. Kensington, $9.95 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-1-4967-0368-2

Angell returns to the Richmond Rogues baseball team (last seen in No Breaking My Heart) as it begins its annual ritual of spring training at the beach town of Barefoot William, Fla. Brash left fielder Joe Zooker loves the beginning of the season and enjoys the posse of groupies who follow him adoringly around the boardwalk. When Joe encounters pretty Stevie Reynolds, who’s been falsely accused of shoplifting, he pretends to be her boyfriend and uses his star power to save her from arrest. Ungrateful, she only gives him a hard time in return; she finds him attractive but is suspicious of his playboy ways. Stevie’s sassy attitude intrigues Joe, and soon his irresistible Rottweiler, Turbo, is boarding at Unleashed, a fancy dog kennel owned by Stevie’s aunt Twyla. To help Twyla stay in business, Joe becomes her tenant and agrees to pose for a wedding photo shoot with Stevie to raise money for the kennel, which leads to a passionate night together and eventually to true love. The misunderstanding that keeps Joe and Stevie apart seems absurd, as is the likelihood that a heartthrob professional athlete would quit philandering cold turkey, but these are understandable flaws in a series entry that successfully combines Angell’s favorite elements of sports, romance, humor, and cute dogs. (Oct.)