I love Elley Arden!! She is a super great person and author and I am honored to have her on my blog today!!! So everyone please give a warm welcome to Elley Arden!!!!

9781440568787.inddThe Best Beard in Sports by Elley Arden
I sat down to write this blog post, which Toni so generously agreed to share with you, and I got distracted by my daily habit of reading celebrity gossip. TMZ.com, PerezHilton.com and People.com are my regular haunts. I went to People.com, and there was this face staring back at me. He looked familiar, a little handsome, but something was…off. And then it registered.
Joe Manganiello shaved his beard.
I’m shocked, maybe even a little mortified, and it’s making it hard to write the post I planned to write.
You see, I’m supposed to be here talking about my new release, Change My Mind, which is the second book in my Kemmons Brothers Baseball Series. The hero, Grey, is a Major League Baseball player, a centerfielder to be exact, and he has a beard through most of the book, AND I used Joe as inspiration.
Let’s take a minute here so I can shamelessly plug the book:
Nothing is going to stop Nel Parker from raising her fledgling real estate agency to the top of the heap. When she returns two dogs to a million-dollar mansion with a dumpster in the driveway, she thinks the house is her lucky break. But the owner turns out to be a moody professional baseball player with a complicated agenda of his own, leaving Nel to fear her plans for real estate domination are doomed.
Centerfielder Grey Kemmons is spending the off-season renovating the house he inherited from his father. It’s a miserable job, but he’s doing it anyway—because somebody has to pay back the money his father stole. When a spitfire of a woman in a surprisingly attractive package shows up wanting to list the house, he agrees to pacify her with a tour, never expecting the mutually beneficial business relationship that ensues.
As weeks go by, business turns to pleasure with Nel and Grey believing the temporary nature of their time together will protect their hearts. Too bad nothing can protect them or prepare them for love.
Now, let’s get back to mourning Joe’s beard.
This whole thing got me thinking about how I’m not usually a beard-kinda-gal, but there are some men who just look excellent with facial hair. And that got me thinking about the number of athletes who are currently sporting beards. It’s become a sort-of trend—and not just for playoffs.
I started looking for pictorial proof, and I found this link, featuring the MLB’s 25-Man Facial Hair All-Star Team. I can’t say all these beards are attractive, but it makes for a fun slide show, and it has me wondering…who is the sexiest professional athlete with a beard? (Yes, I’m including hockey in that, because we all know those guys take their facial hair seriously.)
What do you think? Leave a comment telling me who is the sexiest, bearded, professional athlete, and you’ll be entered into a drawing to win an autographed copy of Save My Soul: Book One in the Kemmons Brothers Baseball Series and some author swag. And if you’re interested in a quick, steamy read with a feisty, independent heroine and a sexy, professional athlete hero, check out Change My Mind: Book Two in the Kemmons Brothers Baseball Series (available in e-book from Amazon, B&N and iTunes).

Get Change My Mind here!

Author Bio:
Elley Arden is a born and bred Pennsylvanian who has lived as far west as Utah and as far north as Wisconsin. She drinks wine like it’s water (a slight exaggeration), prefers a night at the ballpark to a night on the town, and believes almond English toffee is the key to happiness. Elley writes provocative, contemporary, series romance for Crimson Romance. For a complete list of Elley’s books visit http://www.elleyarden.com.

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