In this powerful novel about the cost of greatness, a legendary athlete attempts a comeback when the world considers her past her prime—from the New York Times bestselling author of Malibu Rising.

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.

Audiobook Review

6 stars!

Game, set and match.

This might be the best TJR I have read!
Even better than Malibu Rising, Daisy Jones and Evelyne Hugo!

Once again she made me believe that everything was real! That this was like a biography!
And what was even more impressive is that she did that with quite an abrasive heroine! Carrie is certainly no little flower coquettishly claiming that “She didn’t know how she won” at the end of matches! When she wins it’s because : “She was better than her opponent.” Or because “Her opponent played poorly.”
Carrie is more of a badass b!tch ,  uncompromising with social niceties than a sweet yet strong heroine.
She is confident in her talent, she is brash, dedicated like none other and her life simply is tennis!
Known as ” The Battle Ax”, If dedication and will had a picture in the dictionary, it would be that of Carrie!

And I yet rooted for Carrie from the very first moment.

I wanted no, I NEEDED her to succeed! To reclaim her record. To prove everyone wrong! To show them that the b!tch is back!

I am again all electrified just writing these lines and reliving the book, watching the pictures pop in my head!

As you can already guess with all my use of superlatives and exclamation points, I adored everything in this book.

The pace and the growth was absolutely perfecto!

We began with a “now” moment when Carrie and her father Javier witness Nicky Chan getting her ninth Grand Slam hence equaling Carrie’s record before she retired five years ago.
Picked in her pride, wanting to remain “the greatest tennis player in the world”, Carrie vows to come back and reclaim her throne!

We then go back to Carrie’s past and learn about her achievements.
Carrie lost her mother at a young age and was raised by her father, Javier Soto “El Jaguar”, former Argentina star tennis player.
She trained every day with her dad until her movements were like second nature. She craved tennis and wanted to become the best player ever, to become number one. That’s what her dad promised her. And that’s what she would get.
Even at the cost of friendship and love.

After five years of retirement, we will live with her all the preparation, the arduous training and the sheer will she demonstrated to beat Nikki Chan’s record.

For two days, I lived for tennis. I breathed tennis. I studied every weakness of her opponents. And I listened to El Jaguar’s advice.
Thanks to Taylor Jenkins Reid superb and very efficient writing, I too felt like winning a championship with Carrie.

This book is PHENOMENAL and will make it to my top five of the year!

Also despite not having Julia Whelan as the main narrator, Stacy Gonzalez did a splendid job narrating Carrie Soto’s journey.

Thank you for reading!


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  1. I LOVE seeing this get a 6 star review! I’m listening to the audiobook now and am loving it! TJR never, ever disappoints but seeing you call it her best above all others is impressive. I am also loving the narration by Stacy Gonzalez. She is excellent in portraying Carrie.

  2. This was the first TJR book that caught my interest, and I agree with you, it was stupendous. I was into the tennis and the comeback, but I loved seeing Carrie evolve as a person. Wonderful!