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Off Sides

Series: Off, Book 1
Length: 4 hrs and 59 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (670 ratings)

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How steamy is it? Hot Damn

Publisher's Summary

"I'm not sure what possessed me to do it. Maybe it was the impossible expectations I faced, maybe it was my own self-loathing. But I just knew I needed something different to happen. I needed someone...something...to derail me from my current path. Otherwise I would become lost...a hollowed-out shell of a man. So I did it. I approached her, then I pursued her, then I made her mine. And my life was saved...."

Ryan Burnham is the privileged son of a US congressman and captain of his university's hockey team. While he is on the verge of fulfilling his dreams to play in the NHL, his parents want him on a different course. One he is expected to accept for the sake of his family's public image.

Forced to abandon her music career after the heartbreaking death of her parents, Danny Cross exists on the opposite side of the tracks from Ryan. She is struggling to make her own way, working two jobs, attending college part time, and volunteering in a homeless shelter. She is on a mission to build her own success.

With a chance meeting, their vastly different worlds collide, causing each to evaluate whether they are truly on the correct path to self-fulfillment and happiness. Can their relationship survive? Particularly when others are against them every step of the way? A lot can happen in just 10 short days....

©2013 Sawyer Bennett (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"When Ryan Burnham, a wealthy college hockey player, meets struggling Danny Cross, who works as a waitress to pay for college, it's a meeting of polar opposites. Narrators Charlotte North and Matthew Holland deftly present the alternating chapters from each character’s perspective. Supporting characters, frequently changing action, and emotional highs and lows are realistically portrayed in this contemporary yet old-fashioned love story. Ryan's incredulous friends and his social-climbing mother are nasty and critical to Danny, hoping to break up the relationship. Hearing Danny's backstory is heartbreaking; when both of her parents died, she relinquished her scholarship to Julliard. Yet she remains optimistic and kind, even to her detractors. The standout creation is fiery Paula, Danny's older friend and roommate who loudly challenges anyone who's malicious to Danny. Listeners will enjoy hearing how Danny and Ryan work to overcome the countless obstacles between them and a happy handing." ( AudioFile Magazine)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    355
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    202
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    85
  • 2 Stars
    18
  • 1 Stars
    10

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    166
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    56
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    15
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    2

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • 4 Stars
    182
  • 3 Stars
    87
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    21
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    11
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Sweet, sexy story!

This audiobook was just lovely listening! This story was about an orphaned girl from the low income side of life who meets a rich hockey playing College student who is a Senator's son at the diner where she works. It's instant attraction and he asks her out on a date. Much to his surprise, she takes him with her to serve dinner at a homeless shelter for their first date. Intrigued by this girl who is like no one he's ever known before, Ryan falls in love with her more each time they meet and she's head over heels right away. The world intrudes on their relationship in the form of his snobby friends and family who look on her social status. Can he stand up to everyone in the name of love? I enjoyed the ending very much. Great narration!

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Argggg the Narrators

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Better Narration.. I couldn't listen to more than five chapters. They were just bad.

Would you ever listen to anything by Sawyer Bennett again?

Yes, I love this author and I'm disappointed that I wont be listening to this series.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

They were BLAND and LACKluster.. monotone.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

I think the book had lots of potential if given different narrators. Christian Fox and Kate Rudd, maybe?

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Like The Characters, I Took A Chance!


This was my first Sawyer Bennett story, and while it didn't WOW me, it didn't disappoint either. I will definitely be listening to more from Bennett. It's a quick feel good romance, with mild sex scenes, and low on angst, and drama. While I wished the story was longer, Bennett did a great job with the plot and characters. I particularly liked there weren't too many characters to keep up with.

May contain some spoilers;
Off Sides takes place in the college environment with frat parties, drama, and mean girls, but the adult content and writing gives it more of an adult feel. Alternating between Ryan and Danny POV's, these two are from different social classes. Danny's a quick-witted waitress, who's strong, independent, with a heart of gold, but also has a heart-breaking past. Ryan's sexy, the captain of the college hockey team and comes from money. These two have an intense connection, but Ryan's afraid Danny will get hurt because she doesn't fit in with his social class, friends or family. Danny proves herself capable of standing up for herself; however, his family disapproves of their relationship, and conspire to break them up.

I enjoyed both Charlotte North's and Matthew Holland's performance! It was a case of "the more I listened, the better it got!" I would definitely listen to more audios by either of these narrators. (I've listened to well over 600 audios from various platforms and have learned there is no perfect narration but have a tip I use that helps me to enjoy just about anyone's narration, others may find it useful. I adjust the speed. If I find the narration is too slow or monotone, I adjust the speed to 1.25x or 1.50x. It shortens the words and the pauses between the words and sentences, making the narration sound more lively. The new speed may sound weird at first, but after a few minutes and you adjust, you may find you like it. I listen to 95% of all my audios on 1.25x speed and love it! I will adjust as needed, but rarely listen to any audio at the "normal" 1x speed. There are only a few audios in my library I didn't finish or enjoy due to the narration.)

This was a really good story, and great performance. I'm definitely looking forward to listening to more audios in the series. It was an awesome whispersync deal!

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Good Story BUT... Timing was OFF.

Short audiobook of a sweet new adult love story. Characters were well developed, though a longer book would've made it better. A longer book would've allowed for more development of secondary characters too. Flirty conversations and tender interactions really made this love story special. What didn't work was the timeline. While I believe in love at first sight, too much happens for this couple in the first week. It could've simply been solved by just allowing a few days to pass here and there. And the story would've felt more believable.

Liked it enough to move on to book two.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

nah

Thugs and crip wannabes....no thank you. I'm going to pass. there are better ways to articulate yourself than this.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Typical college/ YA story

Off Sides is a quick and cute listen. Danny is a poor college student who meets and falls Hockey captain Ryan. The main conflict in their story comes from Ryan being from a wealthy family with wealthy friends while Danny has a beer humble background. overall both characters were likeable and the story was believable. I only have 3 stars because it didn't really stand out for me. While Danny had an interesting backstory, the rest of the story was a but predictable. I also thought their relationship moved a bit too fast at times.

No complaints about the narrators

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • DW
  • 03-09-17

Sweet romance with a short time frame

Where does Off Sides rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Midway, it's a sweet romance for the younger listener. A bit implausible in parts.

What did you like best about this story?

Not too much drama, and takes place over a short span of time.

What does Charlotte North and Matthew Holland bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

their inflections, emotional intonations.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Ryan's "rescue" of her emotionally after learning about his mother's efforts to torch the relationship.

Any additional comments?

I just finished book two, where these two characters are continuing to grow and thrive, and book 2 is better in a lot of ways!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

You Are My One And Only

This was a delightful romance about two young people from different social classes overcoming certain social stigmas to be together. This serves as a really good first book for a new series. I must confess up front that I absolutely love Sawyer Bennett and greedily devour anything she writes. With that disclosure being made -- I really like the love story between Danny and Ryan, even though they fell hard and fast in less than 2 weeks. But I guess love has no time line. I usually try to stay away from too much college drama and fortunately the college drama was kept to a minimum. I like how the different relationships develop throughout the story and the characters are introduced for future story lines. Can't wait to see how they develop.

The narrators were perfect for this story -- they were able to portray the youth and maturing qualities of young adults. I look forward to hearing them narrate other books.

Definitely worth the credit. I've already purchased most of the other books in the series, this will be an interesting week for me.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

I wanted sports romance!

I went in open-minded thinking OOO we are going to get a sports romance YES!
I feel sad, he might have been a sports guy but we didn’t get any actual hockey scenes. :(
I kind of felt like I have read this book before over and over again it was all very predictable. Not to say it wasn’t good it just wasn’t unique.

I guess I just wanted something more.
I enjoyed the narration!

6 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

An enjoyable contemporary romance.

I read OFF SIDES years ago and loved it. I recently saw it available on Audible and snapped it up for a listen. The narrators were new to me and they were terrific. Because the listening experience was excellent I am now listening to the next stand-alone novel in the series, OFF LIMITS (instead of re-reading it) because it has the same narrators.

Sawyer Bennett ranks highly on Amazon for her erotica style novels. This novel, however, is not in the erotica genre. Rather, it is a very sweet romance with a good build-up from first meeting between the hero, Ryan, and heroine, Danny, a couple in their early twenties attending university. They have a lovely connection based on a warm chemistry that builds from liking to love, and the physical relationship is not rushed and develops at just the right pace. I found it a moving, emotional and satisfying romantic read. It had 2 great characters I could not help but like, and I sympathised with them for having to deal with difficult personal circumstances (that were not described in an overdone angsty way). Together, they were perfect for one another. My only criticism is the speed with which they fall in love and pledge love to each other – in romance novel world the pace feels natural, but in real terms, it is very fast. So for that element of the story I suspended my disbelief, and just went with it because the characters were so likeable and sweet.

While it’s not erotica, the couple do engage in sex that it is weaved into the story as a natural progression of the couple’s romance. I felt the love, respect and admiration the couple had for each other, long before any sexy-times happened. I have read many Sawyer Bennett novels now and would say the OFF SERIES is more romance than erotica, and remains my favourite series of hers for this reason.

I recommend this novel including in Audible format for the good narration and the feel-good young adult vibe.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • LilleyLoohLah
  • 01-05-17

Light easy story

A wonderfully written coming of age college drama that confronts first love full on. The story, told in dual POV follows the son of a US Congressman and captain of the hockey team Ryan Burnham, as he unexpectedly falls for struggling waitress Danny Cross. Divided by class and living in two different worlds they struggle to find their way when snobbery and contempt threatens their future. Thankfully neither of them take any bull, they both know the facts and they know what they are up against, that is until Ryan's cow of a mother decides to really twist the knife in a very open wound and play completely on Danny's emotions and love for Ryan. Quite emotional in places with some pretty strong characters, I've got to say I'm looking forward to getting my teeth into the rest of the series.

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Lara
  • 04-26-17

Cliche and obvious

Every possible obvious dilemma that could happen pretty much does. Insta love.
No where near as good as her other series.
Glad it was short. Will be retuning.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful