I got an email today from Kobo saying that the next two books in this series are available for preorder. Happy day! Granted, I have to wait until September to read the 4th book, but I have a ton of other reading to do in the meantime since a couple book blogs have turned me on to all sorts of things I feel I need to read and a bunch of things I’ve been meaning to read for awhile anyway. Watch out for the minor spoiler below.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This review contains spoilers.
Garrett is a ladies man, happy with his life but not interested in forming any sort of long term relationship with a woman. That is until he meets Olivia and finds that he wants to only be with her. Olivia wants to be with him too, but she has a much bigger problem to worry about: she has stage 4 cancer and she wonders if she’s not hurting him more by possibly dying on him too soon.
I’m conflicted about this book. I still love the hockey aspect of the Cold Fury books and I still love my formulaic romances, but this one seemed to hit the insta-lust/insta-love button way too quickly. Garrett is supposed to be a complete man-whore, so the fact that he changed his ways so quickly seemed weird. I believe the point was to showcase the possible death of Olivia and bring about a “life is too short” theme, but I think it would have worked so much better with a different character. Some of it was also a little boring, and I felt there was no real conflict.
Other than his quick fall from Ladies Man, I enjoyed Garrett as a character. He’s a sweet guy (mostly). Olivia on the other hand? Not so much. Okay, I get we’re supposed to feel sorry for her and that she’s supposed to be quirky, but her whole “I don’t want to die on him” angst got very old, very fast. Having said that, it was interesting having the character roles change, since in the other books in this series, the guy is the one doing the dumping. Sadly, Olivia’s alpha female just doesn’t do it for me. What saves the characters for me is Stevie, Olivia’s flamboyant best friend and owner of the flower shop where he works. He’s a fun character and offered comic relief when Olivia was driving me nuts.
If I can leave behind the insta-feelings, the Romance Factor is high, with Garrett being a model boyfriend (no Heart Feels though). The Sex Factor is also high. I feel like the author gets a little racier with each new book in the series (which means the 4th one is going to be super hot). However, I think the sexy times filled in gaps where plot was weak, and I would have rather have had a stronger plot and more interesting conflict.
Here’s that spoiler I was telling you about, so stop here if you don’t want to know (though it’s a romance novel, so it’s probably not that much of a spoiler, right?)***
There was one other thing about the book that I really didn’t like, and that was the ending. I understand a flash forward is supposed to assure the reader that the couple have a happy ending, but I don’t think it was needed. I think just knowing they got back together and having the hope that things would be okay would have been enough. The FF also felt weird amidst a series where the other characters are connected with these two, because it put them on a different level. Now I know their future, and I feel I should know everyone else’s, but I really don’t want to because I’m not a fan of the device in this instance.
As critical as this review is, I still enjoyed the book and how it tied in with the 3rd book in the series. The vibe felt alot different in this one. Sure, it was sexy and lovey, but there was also a lot of depressing aspects. I think tackling some of this heavy material was kind of a risk, and while I’m not entirely sold on some of the book’s aspects, I still respect it and love the world it’s set in.