Phoebe is a single mom and a cop. When some arrogant superstar thinks he can speed through my town and smirk and charm his way out of a ticket, he’s wrong. She wrote the ticket and impounded his car. Alex is the football superstar in question, while he hates being stuck in the small town, it does not stop him from flirting with Phoebe every chance he gets. As if strutting around in boxers with his abs and chest on display is enough to make me forget his snide comments and wisecracks. That would make a great story, bagging the cop that gave him the ticket- but Phoebe does not have time to fool around. The closer we get, the more she thinks she misjudged him. Somewhere beneath that arrogant smirk is a good man, maybe even the right man, but her past threatens to shatter them both.
Benched is a fun combination of bad boy makes good and bad girl gone straight. Phoebe is doing her best, she fights to be respected as the only female officer in a small town while raising her daughter on her own. Alex is a football star that is getting sick of the life but is being pushed by his management to beat the charge and keep playing despite his willingness to take the consequences of his actions. When Alex rents the house right next to Phoebe's, life gets more interesting and complicated. They each have issues to work out, and are thrown together in unexpected ways. I liked the way the love/hate relationship between Phoebe and Alex changed and grew. I like that neither are exactly what you expect as the book opens, and only become more interesting as the story progresses. I really liked Alex as a character, and the way he is a nurture under his bad boy shell really endeared himself to me. I also liked the twists that were tossed in for additional drama, but did not feel like they were actually needed. The emotional rollercoaster of real life might have been enough. The only thing that bothered me as I read was Phoebe's daughter, her actions and reactions seemed much older than the 5 to 6 year old that she is described to be. I understand that some kids are more mature than others, and that life sometimes makes children older than their years, but she just seemed to be closer to 10 than her described age.