REVIEW: KATE STEWART – THE GUY ON THE LEFTThe Guy on the Left by Kate Stewart
Also by this author: The Brave Line, Drive
Also in this series: The Guy on the Right, The Guy in the Middle
Series: The Underdogs #2
on December 8, 2019
Genres: New Adult, sports romance
Tropes: Surprise Pregnancy
Format: eARC
Source: Author
Buy on Amazon
Cliffhanger: No


It started with a lie. A night of blurred lines between a teacher and a student.

I wasn’t her student, yet it was the single most defining night of my life.

I’ve never been the man she thinks I am.

Most people have no idea about the life I’ve lived or the words that ring true when it comes to me—still waters run deep.

But you’d be hard-pressed to find a coed on the TGU campus who knows otherwise…because I’ve never corrected them.

The clock is ticking down, it’s Fourth and Inches with the ball inside the one-yard line and the focus is on me, The Guy on the Left. I’ve never felt like a football god, inside I’m…just Troy.

It’s time to set the record straight.

For my son, I‘ll find the strength.

In her eyes, I’m determined to gain redemption.

I will have them both, even if I have to take my eye off the ball.


by Kate Stewart

I has sad. After finishing THE GUY ON THE RIGHT I was so looking forward to Troy and Clarissa’s story but this didn’t wow me the way I expected.

I see the safety gang is throwing a shitfit over Troy – I wish they’d get the facts straight. After so many books they should be aware that Kate Stewart doesn’t write “safe” stories. Her characters are REAL, messy, chaotic and full of flaws. It’s why I love her books. Sure, some of the drama we saw in Theo’s story spills over into this one but I can’t emphasize enough that Troy never knew that he’d slept with Theo’s ex or hit on Theo’s girlfriend until after the fact. So please make sure you have your facts right before casting judgment.

Troy lied about his age when he knocked up Clarissa and has been paying for it for six years. Six years of missing his son grow up. Missing all his firsts.
This in itself is unforgivable but six years holding a grudge for something a teenager did is a completely different universe of unforgivable. I was hoping for Kate Stewart to come through again and make it work. I wish I could say she did – I love her stories so, so much and it pains me to say that THE GUY ON THE LEFT wasn’t the book for me.

The way Clarissa treated Troy was rotten. She went so far as to not tell her best friend how Troy had been trying to support his son and his son’s mother because she wanted her to hate him too. So suffice to say, Clarissa and I weren’t off to a good start. There were so many situations where I thought that this heroine went out of line but the last abuse of Troy’s trust got to me the most. He had proven again and again to Clarissa that he was a good man and could be trusted. So when Troy was counting on her to believe him and needed her support more than ever she let him down. Big time.

“You’re the only one who’s seen me, in years. You’re the only one who’s seen me, and you”—tears glide down his face—“ you still couldn’t believe me. You’re the one person in the fucking world I needed to believe me.”

Here is where I never wanted to forgive Clarissa – it’s a bad sign when you want the hero to end up with someone else, someone who deserves him. The author did make me come around in the last 10-15% because Clarissa knew how badly she messed up and started to fight for Troy but I couldn’t completely forgive how she treated him until then. In her selfishly holding on to her grudge she not only took those precious first years away from Troy and Dante but also caused heartbreak to other people.

It’s my time to prove I will fight for him, as he has for me. It’s time to show him that words aren’t a fool’s gold when spoken from the right heart. I love him. I believe in him. I believe in us, and I’ll do whatever it takes to make him see what I do, a future, together. Love requires a little bit of idiocy and a hell of a lot of bravery, and I’ll be the fool for him.

Ms Stewart’s portrayal of Troy compensated me for the frustration with Clarissa. He was so much more than this cocky, funny guy let on in THE GUY ON THE RIGHT. He had so much depth and sweetness and he and his son Dante were the reasons why I still look at this book in a positive light. Troy loved Dante with all his heart and wanted to do right by him and his mother. He was a hardworking man who was punished for a single mistake for years that, yes, could have been a big issue for Clarissa but the point is it wasn’t and Troy apologized for it so many times.

Now I’ve talked a lot about what didn’t work for me so now I’ll let you in on why I still loved some of it. The writing. Oh my god, this author’s words are everything. So many beautiful, poignant quotes I marked because they just settled in my heart. There was also humor that took the weight of the angst off of this story. And then there was Dante who made me smile so many times. He was such a cute little smartass.

“I’ve memorized you, Clarissa, the shape of your lips, the lilt of your voice, your every smile, every mood, your everything.”

Kate Stewart is one of those authors I trust implicitly and don’t get me wrong – I still do. There is also a huge number of high-starred reviews so please don’t take my word for it. Everyone experiences books differently and there is a good chance you will love THE GUY ON THE LEFT. Make sure to check them out and go from there!

I can’t unlove Troy Jenner. He’s made it impossible.


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