Hi Jaci, welcome back to Under the Covers and celebrating another release in your fabulous PLAY BY PLAY series.  Congrats!

Thanks so much for having me back again!

We’ve never grilled you for these before, but how about sharing five things about you that are not common knowledge?

I spoke fluent Italian as a child, thanks to my maternal grandparents. Sadly, the only thing I remember now is a song my grandfather used to sing to me. (If you don’t use it, you lose it, people)

I was once a licensed private investigator. Interesting job, but not as fun as it looks on TV.

I was also once a vice president of a division in corporate America, managing hundreds of staff. Let’s just say I much prefer being an author. 😉

My first car was a 1964 Dodge Polara. I had to have the transmission replaced twice. That car gave new meaning to the acronym P.O.S.

My second car was a 1968 Chevy Camaro, 3 speed, 327 engine. * sigh *. Sure wish I still had that car.

I have six tattoos. My favorite is my writerly tattoo on my wrist. If you ever meet me, ask to see it!

As with any series that goes on for as many books as yours, how do you manage to keep the storylines fresh?

It’s all about the characters. Each character drives the story. They’re unique, have their own backgrounds, conflicts and goals. They’re completely different from any of the other characters I’ve written, so I’d like to think their story would be fresh and exciting and nothing like anyone else’s.

I know you drew some inspiration for THROWN BY A CURVE from your own recovery and therapy from an injury.  How did you use that experience in your writing?

I had the opportunity to do some awesome research for THROWN BY A CURVE while undergoing physical therapy on my own shoulder injury. My therapist actually did some work with athletes and had a background in sports medicine, so while he worked on my injured shoulder, I asked a lot of questions. It gave me a great amount of empathy for what my character was going through. Garrett needed his arm for pitching. I needed mine for writing. The possibility of a career ending injury can affect you not only physically, but emotionally. Not being able to do your job because you’re injured is so incredibly frustrating. I drew on that and used that frustration to help me get into my character’s head. It worked out well for both of us in the end.

Valentine’s Day has come and gone but if Garrett was to do something special for Alicia on Valentine’s Day, what would it be?

He’d take her rock climbing.

Did you have a particular scene that you struggled to write or that was special for you?  Care to share?

There’s a scene where Garrett takes a baseball in his hand and throws for the very first time since his injury. It’s a very profound scene for him, and I got choked up for him while I was writing it. I hope it’s as emotional for the readers as it was for me when I wrote it.

I’m already looking ahead… even though I refuse to read the teaser for ONE SWEET RIDE, I believe I noticed that we are moving away from the Riley family.  How is that going to work with the family dynamics we are used to reading about?

It was very hard for me to leave the Riley family after THROWN BY A CURVE, but I had to be realistic. There are only so many Rileys, and I couldn’t start pulling vague Riley family athletes out of the closet. That just wouldn’t be believable. However, I think the readers will not only fall madly in love with Garrett in THROWN BY A CURVE, but also with his college buddies Gray, Drew and Trevor, who will go on to have their own books.

Also, I’m releasing a Riley Christmas digital novella in November this year. Titled HOLIDAY GAMES, the novella will feature Gavin and Elizabeth Riley and the rest of the Riley family, so I haven’t quite left the Riley family altogether yet. I kind of love those Rileys!

When can we expect to read more about Garrett’s college buddies?

Gray’s book is up next in ONE SWEET RIDE, which releases in June. I’m currently finishing up Drew’s book, MELTING THE ICE, which will release in February, 2014. After that comes Trevor’s book, currently untitled, and it will release in the summer of 2014.

Nauti and Wilder is almost finally here!  We are so excited to read more of the Wild Riders and it seems we’ve waited forever for this book.  What can readers expect from it?

I’m as excited as you are about the release of Nautier and Wilder! I so enjoyed doing the first anthology—Nauti and Wild—with the awesome Lora Leigh, and was thrilled when given the opportunity to do another. This one contains another Wild Riders book, Riding To Sunset, which features a new Wild Rider, Jed, who’s assigned to protect the general’s niece. I think you’re really going to like him.

Any ideas on when we can expect the second book in your Killer series?

No news on that front yet. Hopefully soon.

What are you currently working on?  Because, yes, we need more Jaci Burton!

Like I mentioned earlier, I’m finishing up MELTING THE ICE. After that, I’ll be working on Book 2 of my new Hope contemporary romance series, which is a small town contemporary romance series I’m very excited about. The introductory novella for this series, Hope Smolders, will release in the Hot Summer Nights anthology in July. Hope Flames, the first single title, releases in September.


Sports medicine specialist Alicia Riley has the job of her dreams, until she’s assigned to star pitcher Garrett Scott. Undergoing shoulder rehab, it’s make it or break it time for Garrett, and he needs to focus to get back on the mound in time for opening day. But close proximity and combustible chemistry is a dangerous combination, and both Alicia and Garrett have a lot to lose if this doesn’t work.


About Jaci Burton

Jaci Burton is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling, award-winning author of over 50 books. She lives in Oklahoma and when she isn’t on deadline (which is often), she can usually be found wrestling with her uncooperative garden, wrangling her dogs, watching an unhealthy amount of television, or completely losing track of time reading a great book. She’s a total romantic and longs for the happily ever after in every story, which you’ll find in all her books.



Berkley is  graciously offering a print copy of THROWN BY A CURVE to one lucky US maiden!


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  1. I love all of your books! I can’t wait for Thrown for a Curve & Nautier & Wilder to come out!

  2. I love this series by Jaci Burton. Not only are the covers HOT but the stories are too! I am always waiting for the next one. 😉

  3. I love the covers on these books. So sexy! And I totally relate about the P.O.S car. Never buying a certain maker of car again here either. Ugh.

  4. I have serious love for Jaci’s Play by Play series. I “discovered” her while browsing in my local B&N one day…”Hello, gorgeous hunk on the cover!” Of course, the covers are great, but it’s the characters that hooked me. I’ve caught up with the Play by Play series and have moved on to the Nauti series.
    Thank you, Jaci, for the fantastic stories!

  5. I loved Thrown By A Curve. But then I loved all the Play By Play Books, as well as all your other books. I’m a fan for life.

  6. I enjoyed the interview. I have been wanting to read Jaci’s books, love the covers! Thanks for sharing & the giveway!

  7. Love this series!! And I am doubly excited for Nautier and Wilder. Thanks for the stories, Jaci Burton!

  8. I have to catch up with this series. Interesting interview. I also spoke Italian as a child because of my grandparents and once I married and had my own family I stopped using it. I should have continued so my own kids would have learned Italian. But raising 7 kids I’m lucky I remembered English. 🙂
    Carol L

  9. I can relate with you about first cars…my parents gave me a root beer colored ’57 Chevy Belair 4-door hardtop/post for my high school graduation. I was the envy of every guy on the “gut”
    Friday & Saturday nights. My Dad bought it from his brother who worked on cars & resold them. As much as I loved that car it took a lot of work to maintain. I was fine as long as I had a “mechanic” boyfriend, learning along the way. When I ran out of boyfriends and my brother wrecked it, I had to park it and sell it. I miss that car… Thanks for the series, it’s a joy, I’m a big UO college football fan 😉 I’m looking forward to Nautier & Wilder too!

  10. I absolutely love love love this series and can’t wait to read this book!!!!!! Jaci you are one of my favorite authors xoxox

  11. I would love to win this! I’ve been saving the the series to read all at once, but now I’m getting started.

  12. Fantastic interview! Love the Play By Play series and stoked to read this one! I wish I could live in Jaci’s brain… 🙂

  13. Love the cover. This sounds like a good read. This is also a new author for me. Thanks for the chance to win.

  14. Great interview, Jaci! Thank you for sharing. I loved this series from book one.

    My question… will there ever be an MM sports story for us?

  15. Congrats on your release Jaci!!!!

    OMG… Your cover artist freaking rocks apples! And of course the books are awesome!!!!!!!!!!
    The fact that the men are in sports uniforms makes me a happyyyyyyyyy woman!!! 🙂
    Oh delicious! Thanks for such a great giveaway!

  16. I love the motorcycle pic!!!! U R 1 of my FAVORITE authors!!! I just finished Thrown by a curve……………..LOVED IT!!!

  17. Loved the interview and I can’t believe I havent read a Jaci Burton book….:( I want to so I’m glad I entered this contest I hope I win and Thank you for the chance to win…..

    [email protected]

  18. I like books about athletes and have gone through rehab myself, so this book really caught my attention.


  19. I had wondered how it would work as all of the Riley’s had their books. I wondered if you would start a new but related series. I assume this means that now we get to keep revisiting the Riley’s! Yippee! jepebATverizonDOTnet

  20. This question is for the author: Have you ever written about any other sports? Why baseball?

    mestith at gmail dot com

  21. This book sounds so good! I have been dying to read this series but I just can’t make myself pay $12 for the first book and I like to read series in order even if they can stand alone. Thanks for the great interview and giveaway! The interview was very entertaining.

  22. Now I’m curious about the rest of Jaci’s tattoos. This book has it all – my favorite model, one of my favorite sports and, of course, a rockin’ story by JB!!!!

  23. I enjoyed the interview. Thanks for the giveaway. Oh, and Jaci, you will pick Italian right back up if you decide you want to re-learn it. The place for it is already in your brain and programmed….