I liked this book, but one of the beginning scenes is about a hockey game and it was painful how much I want to go see a live game again. We have minor league and club teams nearby..I have no excuse. Maybe it’s more I miss college hockey and actually watching NHL on a television. Either way, I enjoyed this book a lot. I reference the 3rd book in the series, which I wrote a GR review for but hasn’t dropped here yet. It’ll come out in a few weeks, closer to the time when the book is released.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Alex is the MVP of the Cold Fury hockey team. The problem is, he hates playing and he has a reputation for being a jerk to both the fans and his teammates. Alex couldn’t care less, since he’s only playing to bring home a paycheck and set himself up for when his career ends. That all changes when he’s forced to work with Sutton, an advocate for children in broken rooms, on a team sponsored anti-drug campaign. Besides the fact that he’s attracted to her, he starts to see hockey through her eyes and his love for the game is renewed. As they form a relationship, Alex starts to doubt if he’s good enough for her, and when his own family past starts to haunt him, he wonders if the only way to save his sanity and his career is to let her go.
I read this book because I’d read an ARC of the 3rd book in the series and wanted more. The plot of this one is straightforward but well written. It doesn’t drag. The romance between the 2 main characters develops at about the speed I like my romance to develop in general. Though the plot is pretty standard, the hockey aspect makes me happy, other than the fact it’s painful how much it makes me want to go watch a hockey game.
Sutton is mostly likable and cute. She and Alex both come from harsh childhoods, but she’s pushed through hers and found happiness while Alex can’t let go of his. Because she’s a therapist, it seemed very blatant that she was using psychology on Alex, and though she emotes, there were times when she felt very stoic and logical about what was happening to her. Alex is fun as the surly hockey player, but I almost wanted him to be grumpier and to hold on to his angst a little bit longer. The chemistry between the two was good, but I wanted more conflict.
The Romance Factor was at about a 4/5 because even though it was very sweet, it didn’t give me the Heart Feels. Having said that, the nod to one of my favorite movies ever at the end was pretty darn awesome (not giving spoilers…read it!)
I remember the Sex Factor in the other book from this series being much higher than this one. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still there, it’s still frequent, and it’s steamy. Maybe I’m just acclimating to the sexy times in the books I’ve been reading, but this one felt tame. Sexy, but tame. I’m giving it a 3/5.
This was a fun read and I always enjoy cameos of characters from other books (though one of the cameos was a little depressing knowing what happens in book 3). Hockey and romance? Yes…please give me more.