I didn’t know how much I needed a story about a girl football player and a girl cheerleader, but I totally did. Home Field Advantage delivered on everything it offered and more. Dahlia Adler does it again!!
Let’s discuss the cuteness!
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Amber McCloud’s dream is to become cheer captain at the end of the year, but it’s an extra-tall order to be joyful and spirited when the quarterback of your team has been killed in a car accident. For both the team and the squad, watching Robbie get replaced by newcomer Jack Walsh is brutal. And when it turns out Jack is actually short for Jaclyn, all hell breaks loose.
The players refuse to be led by a girl, the cheerleaders are mad about the changes to their traditions, and the fact that Robbie’s been not only replaced but outshined by a QB who wears a sports bra has more than a few Atherton Alligators in a rage. Amber tries for some semblance of unity, but it quickly becomes clear that she’s only got a future on the squad and with her friends if she helps them take Jack down.
Just one problem: Amber and Jack are falling for each other, and if Amber can’t stand up for Jack and figure out how to get everyone to fall in line, her dream may come at the cost of her heart.
Amber McCloud has one goal. Become the cheer captain. It is her one and only dream and she will not stop until she gets it. She doesn’t expect it to be that difficult.
That is until Jack Walsh shows up at school.
When the cheer squad and the football team discover their new quarterback is a girl…most of them act like a bunch of assholes. Yes, even the other girl cheerleaders. All of them except Amber.
Amber doesn’t like Jack because she was kind of mean to her when they first met, but she can’t understand why the hell everyone is making such a big deal out of Jack being the new quarterback. Like yeah, it was surprising, but after that wore off…who cares??
But she thinks once the season starts and they see Jack play, everything will be fine. Jack thinks the same thing. Unfortunately, they could not be more wrong.
There is one saving grace though. Amber, in her effort to try to unify the football and the cheerleaders around their new quarterback, spends more and more time with Jack and they form a connection. At first, that connection is based on the fact that Amber is kind of the only one who will talk to Jack, but it then turns into something more.
But Amber is not out at school and she thinks that if she comes out, she won’t have a chance of getting the cheer captain spot. But will she let that get in the way of her new relationship with Jack? And is Jack okay with being a secret?
I loooooved this book! I like how it was light and fun in some parts but also dealt with some for-real serious issues like sexism and homophobia in others parts. It achieves a perfect balance.
I also LOVED both Amber and Jack and how much we got to learn about their lives and their struggles. The choice for this book to have two POVs was perfection. They are such a cute/fun couple and I would totally read about them just sitting in a park together lol.
I also loved the inclusion of their parents. Amber’s mom is amazing and I enjoyed how complicated Jack’s family life is. She and her mom moved to this new place so she could have a chance to be on a football team and that puts a divide in the family. It gave a little bit more depth to the story.
(I also wanted to kick multiple characters’ asses for being mean to Jack but I digress)
I am giving Home Field Advantage 4 out of 5 stars! If you love contemporary YA romances, you NEED this book!
Home Field Advantage by Dahlia Adler is available now!
Thank you to Netgalley and Wednesday Books for the free eARC in exchange for my honest review.
If you’d like to support me, donating to my ko-fi goes a long way to keeping this blog up and making my life a little more stable. Love you all!