Review | Kulti by Mariana Zapata

KultiKulti by Mariana Zapata
Contemporary Romance
March 20th 2015

About the Book:

“Trust me, I’ve wanted to punch you in the face a time or five.”

When the man you worshipped as a kid becomes your coach, it’s supposed to be the greatest thing in the world. Keywords: supposed to.

It didn’t take a week for 27-year-old Sal Casillas to wonder what she’d seen in the international soccer icon – why she’d ever had his posters on her wall or ever envisioned marrying him and having super-playing soccer babies.

Sal had long ago gotten over the worst non-break-up in the history of imaginary relationships with a man who hadn’t known she’d existed. So she isn’t prepared for this version of Reiner Kulti who shows up to her team’s season: a quiet, reclusive shadow of the explosive, passionate man he’d once been.


What in the hell! I am so in love with this book! Seriously! Is Mariana Zapata magical?

I think she’s magical…

It’s been so long since I’ve been this consumed with a romance novel, and I wasn’t even consumed. I was devoured. Kulti was perfection.

Right now, at the height of my adoration, I want to scream about how I loved Kulti more than The Wall of Winnipeg and Me, and I loved that one too. Kulti was… ugh, so amazing. All I can do is gush. I’m sorry. This review is going to be a lovefest. Plain and simple.

When I reviewed Wall of Winnipeg I wrote that it should have been trimmed. Currently, I can’t remember what trim I was talking about, and after finishing Kulti I wouldn’t cut a single page so maybe I need a Winnipeg reread… In fact, if I have one criticism of Kulti, it could have been just a little longer!

I swear, I’m going to stop squeeing and explain.

Whoo… right now…

Kulti is a contemporary sports romance. Sports romance, within the “contemporary” genre is definitely my favorite, and Kulti was most definitely one of the best. I’m not sporty. I don’t have one athletically inclined bone in my body. The closest I got, ever, was horseback riding… which does work muscles, but I’m not sure you can call how I rode “sporty”. I was a trail rider, not a racer or a jumper. Anyway, no sports here. Somehow, someway, when I read a read a sports novel (any genre) I get caught up in the competition and the passion. Maybe it’s that as a bookworm we become the characters and take on their fervor? Whatever it is, while reading I want to live and breathe the sport. Kulti transported me to the field, and made me one of the players.

On the other hand, sometimes too much emphasis is put on the sport and the story becomes boring. Not in this book. Mariana Zapata effortlessly wove the sport jargon in harmony with the plot.

It was like a symphony!

And the relationship between Sal and Kulti, oh my Heavens. It was the type of love story I always beg for. I’m a romance reader that needs the love story to be about the emotional connection. Sex scenes are fine, but if it’s only physical it doesn’t hit me the same way. Sal and Kulti were all emotional connection. Every single, very important, page built their friendship first. Friendship developed into a strong connection far before they ever talked about being in love. That’s the key right there, the very best romance novels convince me that the couple is, and will always be, friends first. That’s what Sal and Kulti were. They were best friends. They were teammates. They were partners. And then, after all of that was cemented, they became lovers.

It was so gosh dang beautiful!
I ached… I still ache.

There was only two minor complaints, so minor they’re almost not worth mentioning but I’m going to anyway. Prior to Sal and Kulti first meeting he’d already made a pretty large impact on her family as a world famed soccer player. It was said, repeatedly, that there was bad blood between Kulti and Sal’s brother for reasons I can’t mention. That was never resolved. It didn’t have any bearing on Sal’s feelings, or the rest of her families, but I would have liked to know how Kulti and Eric handled their history when they initially met.

Also, Sal’s younger sister was another source of strife for Sal that was left unresolved. I appreciate how in life that’s normal. Resolution isn’t a guarantee. In a story, for closure, I needed that. It almost felt like Mariana Zapata purposely left loose ends for a sequel, but since I felt similarly with Wall of Winnipeg without relief I have a feeling I’ll never get that familial closure here either.

In the end, it doesn’t matter.

I’m buying this book.

I will reread this book.

Loose ends be damned!

About Birdie

Don’t look for her in any bar, club, crazy raging party, or anywhere there may be a large gathering of strangers. She’s more likely to be found tucked into the corner of the couch watching one of her favorite shows, or preferably under a comforter with her current novel.

7 Responses

      1. So Wait for Me is Winnipeg’s best friend, Diana. It’s REALLY good. Diana is also the cousin from Kulti. Under Locke is also related to Wait for Me.
        Oh, and Luna and the Lie and The Best Thing are related. Luna comes first.


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