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Check & Mate  By  cover art

Check & Mate

By: Ali Hazelwood
Narrated by: Karissa Vacker
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Publisher's summary

In this clever and swoonworthy YA debut from the New York Times bestselling author of The Love Hypothesis, life’s moving pieces bring rival chess players together in a match for the heart.

Mallory Greenleaf is done with chess. Every move counts nowadays; after the sport led to the destruction of her family four years earlier, Mallory’s focus is on her mom, her sisters, and the dead-end job that keeps the lights on. That is, until she begrudgingly agrees to play in one last charity tournament and inadvertently wipes the board with notorious “Kingkiller” Nolan Sawyer: current world champion and reigning Bad Boy of chess.

Nolan’s loss to an unknown rook-ie shocks everyone. What’s even more confusing? His desire to cross pawns again. What kind of gambit is Nolan playing? The smart move would be to walk away. Resign. Game over. But Mallory’s victory opens the door to sorely needed cash-prizes and despite everything, she can’t help feeling drawn to the enigmatic strategist....

As she rockets up the ranks, Mallory struggles to keep her family safely separated from the game that wrecked it in the first place. And as her love for the sport she so desperately wanted to hate begins to rekindle, Mallory quickly realizes that the games aren’t only on the board, the spotlight is brighter than she imagined, and the competition can be fierce (-ly attractive. And intelligent…and infuriating…)

©2023 Ali Hazelwood (P)2023 Listening Library

Critic reviews

"Ali Hazelwood is the queen of smart rom-coms, and Check & Mate is her best book yet. Filled with snappy banter, clever characters, and crackling tension (and lots of chess!), this is the perfect rivals-to-lovers romance. Check & Mate will have you swooning, laughing, staying up all night, and smiling so much your face hurts. This book is my new obsession. Who knew chess could be so romantic?" —Alex Aster, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Lightlark

"Ali Hazelwood brings her signature wit to YA and the result is nothing short of delightful! Check & Mate stole my heart from the first page — it's at once an irresistible romance, compelling character study, and fascinating peek into the world of chess. I couldn't put it down!" —Rachel Lynn Solomon, New York Times bestselling author of We Can't Keep Meeting Like This

"Hazelwood has captured many a reader’s heart with her adult rom-coms. Now, she makes her YA debut with a story that sparkles with her signature wit and relatable characters. . . . This highly enjoyable, emotion-filled romance will attract teens and even loyal fans of her adult novels as it blends wit and wisdom with love’s tendency to make pawns of us all." —Booklist, starred review

What listeners say about Check & Mate

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The Narrator!

Wow, the book was fantastic, everything Ali writes is golden. I loved discovering a new narrator! Her different voices, on point, her intonation - I felt their feelings. She reminded me of my fave Julia Whelan!

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Amazing.

Had such a great time listening to this story. It was cute, funny and sad at times. But aveall I enjoyed it.

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