In the last of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s loosely connected “famous women” series we follow Carrie Soto, the greatest tennis player the world has ever seen. She holds numerous records including 20 Grand Slam titles – that is until 1994 when powerhouse player Nicki Chan breaks that record. Now, at the age of 37, Carrie decides to come out of retirement and take back her record. As the oldest player in the game, can she prove to her critics and herself that she’s still the best?
Now, I know next to nothing about tennis and, frankly, the rules still confuse me after having them explained, but this book is so exciting and riveting that it didn’t matter in the least. It made me wish that Carrie Soto actually existed so I could find footage of the matches and actually see her in action.
Dubbed “The Battle Axe” by the media due to her ruthlessness on and off the court (Carrie is not there to make friends or coddle weaker players, she’s there to win and only win), she is viewed as cold and uncaring, and yes, she can come off that way but Jenkins Reid let’s us in her head and you can’t help but sympathize and cheer for her the whole way through. Secondary characters like Carrie’s father and coach, Javier, and tennis player Bowe Huntley are both charming and likeable and make a good balance to her seriousness.
I recommend this book to fans of Taylor Jenkins Reid, sports fans, and those that enjoy reading about strong women.