Carrie Soto is fierce, and her determination to win at any cost has not made her popular. But by the time she retires from tennis, she is the best player the world has ever seen. She has shattered every record and claimed twenty Grand Slam titles. And if you ask Carrie, she is entitled to every one. She sacrificed nearly everything to become the best, with her father, Javier, as her coach. A former champion himself, Javier has trained her since the age of two.
But six years after her retirement, Carrie finds herself sitting in the stands of the 1994 US Open, watching her record be taken from her by a brutal, stunning player named Nicki Chan.
At thirty-seven years old, Carrie makes the monumental decision to come out of retirement and be coached by her father for one last year in an attempt to reclaim her record. Even if the sports media says that they never liked “the Battle-Axe” anyway. Even if her body doesn’t move as fast as it did. And even if it means swallowing her pride to train with a man she once almost opened her heart to: Bowe Huntley. Like her, he has something to prove before he gives up the game forever.
In spite of it all, Carrie Soto is back, for one epic final season. In this riveting and unforgettable novel, Taylor Jenkins Reid tells her most vulnerable, emotional story yet.
Author: Taylor Jenkins Reid
Expected Publication Date: August 30, 2022
Publisher: Random House - Ballantine Books
I would like to thank NetGalley and Random House - Ballantine Books for providing me with an early copy of this book to read and give an honest review.
If you have not read Taylor Jenkins Reid, may I suggest you start with this book? Really, truly, I'm not kidding. Go read this book! Of all the books I have read by her, this one is by far my favorite! Wow, just, wow! Her writing only gets better with time! I'm not even a tennis fan, I really don't understand the scoring or why they play so many matches? sets? games? But it didn't even matter because it wasn't about the tennis It was about what the character learned over her tennis career. I could not put it down and read it in one day.
My thought is this book is somewhat reminiscent of Serena Williams. Though I do not know tennis well, I do know she is a force with which to be reckoned as the most decorated and influential woman's tennis player. So I imagine Reid had her in mind when she created the character of Carolina Soto.
I loved how Reid gave us the background of this world famous women's tennis player. Showed us how she grew up, how she crawled her way to the top, how she influenced others in her field.
Soto is tough as nails, closed hearted, and ruthless. She earned her title of The Battle Axe.
But her journey from retirement back to trying to place herself on top changed her. Showed her things in life she needed to learn, we all need to learn.
I loved every character in this book. Javiar, her father, who wanted what was best for her while also wanting her to read her full potential, Bowe, who you don't want to like but then he somehow crawls into your heart. Gail!!!! The mother/sister Soto never got to have. And Chen, Soto's rival who doesn't care how cocky she is because she knows she deserves to be. There's not one character in this book who doesn't help shape Soto, who doesn't help show Soto parts of life she has missed somewhere along the way.
One of my favorite parts in the book is when Reid actually references one of her very own books, Daisy Jones and the Six (also phenomenal and highly recommended). I actually took a picture and posted it on my IG because I just could not resist sharing that with the world!
I cannot say enough about how this book: made my heart race, had me laughing, had me crying. I was a mess, but a good mess.
If you read only one book in 2022, let it be this one. Let yourself into the world of Reid's writing because I promise you you will not regret it! I cannot wait to see what Reid comes up with next.