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Hard Lines [Kindle Edition]

Dave Conifer
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Earning a D-1 football scholarship was gratifying. Leading his new team into the top ten was stunning. Being charged with rape and suspended indefinitely was terrifying.

Jake Zarephath hadn’t seen it coming when his world explodes after a wild night with Robin Dunellen. The campus erupts when the story goes public, but local sportswriter Hamilton Newton trusts his instincts and accepts Jake's denial. Jake is angry and confused, but everything changes after Newton discovers Robin’s horrifying past and nightmarish present. Something is very wrong at Appalachian University.

When crunch time comes it’s all moving so fast that Jake can’t remember who he can trust. But with a championship within reach and somebody’s soul on the line, there’s no time to wait for everyone to choose up sides.

Editorial Reviews


"This university is more important than your client, and right now this university needs the team to keep winning," Chatham said, glowering across the table.  "You don't want to forget that.  They're paying me to make sure your client stays out of jail for the next three months.   After that, it's up to you.  Knock yourself out.  But take my word on this.  Right here, right now, my job is more important than your job."
"The central story is one that we all hear now and then on the news... athletic superstar accused of rape, denies it, accuser is strewn through the mud, who knows what goes on in the background and half the time it just disappears into the ether and we forget all about it, right?" -- Amazon Reviewer
"Dave Conifer's latest novel is a realistic, gritty look at the inordinate importance placed on college sports and how far people will go to keep the machine rolling." -- Amazon Reviewer

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Product Details

  • File Size: 416 KB
  • Print Length: 300 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1480229016
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #585,228 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Awesome story with a hard subject matter October 14, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
The author sent me this book just a couple of days ago asking if I'd read and review it and I honestly had plans to toss it to the side for a while, but for some reason I kept being drawn to reading it. Finally, last night, I gave in and just started reading the darn thing already. I knew from the blurb that it was going to be a tough one.

Let me first say that I know a little less than nothing about football. There's a fair amount of that in there, but the Conifer does a decent job of not losing you in it. I figured out enough to know what I needed to know from it, however football fans might think that part is awesome, I just read it and nodded a lot because what does "rushing" mean, anyway? And who cares? Take your time people, sheesh. (sorry, bad joke)... anyway...

The central story is one that we all hear now and then on the news... athletic superstar accused of rape, denies it, accuser is strewn through the mud, who knows what goes on in the background and half the time it just disappears into the ether and we forget all about it, right?

So, what is it that goes on in the background? The author comes up with a story that, while you don't want to believe it's possibly true, you cannot help but feel a nasty ulcer festering in your stomach that this kind of stuff happens. Probably more often than we could ever want it to. The interesting part is that it all could have been avoided if not for the converging of so many lives of so many people at the wrong place and the wrong time.

It's not an easy read, in many ways. It's tough in places. BUT it was a fast read. I managed to read it in less than 24 hours because I simply could not put it down. I cared about these character - all of them - and I needed to know that they were going to be okay.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Choices and consequences October 9, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Jake Zarephath's life couldn't be better. He's the star player for the Appalachian University football team. For the first time in years, the team actually has a chance to go all the way to the state championship, mostly thanks to Jake's peerless athletic skills. What makes it extra sweet is that they told him he couldn't do it. A star player in High School, college scouts called him too small for Division 1. As a result he lingered around in a Junior College for two years until he caught the eye of Appalachian. It wasn't an easy road for Jake, but he's proven them wrong. He has the respect of his teammates, coaches, the sports media and the entire school. He's living the dream--until he wakes up one morning in a strange room after a party he went to with Robin, a quiet and mysterious acquaintance of his. When she's not in the room the following morning, he thinks nothing of it and goes about his business, attending classes and football practice. Everything's seemingly normal until two police officers come knocking on the door.

Robin has accused Jake of rape. From that point on, his world begins to tear apart at the seams and even the people who seem to be on his side have their own agenda.

Much like his novel E-Bully, Conifer writes another gripping story that is also very topical, but where e-bully dealt with cyber bullying and its affect on teens, Hard Lines deals heavily with the juggernaut that is high level college sports. College sports are big business. They mean money for the school and national recognition. There are some people that are willing to do just about anything to bury things that could sully the school's reputation.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
At first, "Hard Lines" seems like a fairly simple college football story about an underdog player who works hard and finally reaches the big time. But that sense of calm doesn't last.

Before long, the main character is rocked by a startling accusation that tears his life apart and threatens to tear the football program, university, and entire town apart as well.

Be honest. Do the right thing. That always seems like the easiest solution and path of least resistance. But in the midst of a major crisis, Jake quickly realizes it's not always clear what's right and what isn't.

While he is in danger of losing everything, there are many others who have much to gain. His troubles intensify as everyone's conflicting agendas continue to pile up.

Dave Conifer's latest novel is a realistic, gritty look at the inordinate importance placed on college sports in today's society and how far people will go to keep that machine rolling. Fear not, this isn't a fictionalized version of the Penn State tragedy. Thankfully, the two situations are completely different, but one cannot help but draw parallels between both while reading this book.

"Hard Lines" is yet another thrilling page-turner from Conifer, this time using the backdrop of college sports to intricately weave together a winding web of turmoil and deceit.

One of the best books I've read all year. Highly, highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very very well written. January 26, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This story was so real. It was like reading the newspaper. So of course it was difficult to put down. You don't have to be a football fan to follow the team dynamics. It was so good to see the main character develop into a really good guy. The author does keep you wondering if good things will happen.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Well written. This could be based on a true story!!!! This could happen to any college campus. A very good story.
Published 5 months ago by Dachyfam
3.0 out of 5 stars Good simple plot
I like books with simple stories but still filled with suspense and a good ending. This book has all of that.
Published 10 months ago by Ed
4.0 out of 5 stars Very engaging and enjoyable
I read the entire book in one day! I had doubts about the football-centric theme, but football is the background, not the substance. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Graham Stratford
4.0 out of 5 stars confused characters
both leading characters were pitifully confused and had a large amount of baggage for young adults facing lifetime decisions. Read more
Published 13 months ago by cora lee reed
4.0 out of 5 stars Great story
I really enjoyed the story. The author kept my interest as the story unfolded. It was a realistic story with good characters.
Published 16 months ago by Bill G
5.0 out of 5 stars Hard lines
Very good read. Very glad to see it in print how rape is covered up in big schools and athletes. Jake is a hero has morals and beat the big school after being accused.
Published 22 months ago by sherry kowalski-schlink
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping Story
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It keeps you interested and anxious to know what happens next. In my opinion, this is Dave Conifers best book yet. Read more
Published on February 24, 2013 by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Hard Lines
It is Interesting from beginning until end; kind of a feel a good story by the end. May have made the opponets for Appalacian a little more realistic. Read more
Published on February 4, 2013 by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Makes Ya Think - Makes Ya Wonder
Another great read by Dave Conifer. Hard Lines is an apt title for what takes place within its pages. Read more
Published on January 23, 2013 by For What It's Worth...
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good!
As the synopsis says, this is a book about a college football player caught in the middle of a possibly career ending scandal. Read more
Published on December 29, 2012 by Rhouse
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More About the Author

Dave Conifer is a fitness fanatic living in South Jersey with his wife and three kids. When he's not coaching wrestling or soccer or working as a boy scout leader or girl scout leader, Dave likes to read non-fiction history. He also blogs about the 48 solar panels on his roof and how they generate nearly all the power needed by his family of five.

Dave loves to hear from his readers. He can be found at daveconiferfanpage on Facebook. Send an email to to be added to the mailing list and find out when something new is coming, or just to say hi.

Or visit Dave's official web site to sign up for emailed updates about new releases.

Book three of the Cold Cases series is currently in the works!

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