Length: 57,000 words approx
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
Can Tennant show Jared that age is just a number, and that love is all that matters?
The Rowe Brothers are famous hockey hotshots, but as the youngest of the trio, Tennant has always had to play against his brothers’ reputations. To get out of their shadows, and against their advice, he accepts a trade to the Harrisburg Railers, where he runs into Jared Madsen. Mads is an old family friend and his brother’s one-time teammate. Mads is Tennant’s new coach. And Mads is the sexiest thing he’s ever laid eyes on.
Jared Madsen’s hockey career was cut short by a fault in his heart, but coaching keeps him close to the game. When Ten is traded to the team, his carefully organized world is thrown into chaos. Nine years younger and his best friend’s brother, he knows Ten is strictly off-limits, but as soon as he sees Ten’s moves, on and off the ice, he knows his heart could get him into trouble again.
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Before I get into the review proper, I have to be honest and admit that I’m not into ice hockey and know little to nothing about it. While the book is by no means filled with endless amounts of hockey detail, even the bits that were there went straight over my head. They didn’t bore me as such, nor did they pull me out of the story, but I doubt that I would have missed them if they hadn’t been there. But, that’s on me. I guess you’ll have to look at other reviews if you want to know more about how well the authors dealt with that aspect of the story. I’ll limit myself to things I’m more familiar with, such as the romance.
I wouldn’t go so far as to say Tennant and Jared fall victim to a case of insta-love, but there is a clear instance of insta-attraction for both of them as soon as they lay eyes on each other for the first time in years. Of course, nothing is ever as simple as that. Professional sportsmen aren’t supposed to be gay. And, if they are, they’re expected to keep the fact well hidden. Coming out just isn’t an option if you want to succeed in that particular world. Which means Tennant faces a dilemma. He can’t deny is attraction to Jared and he’s sick and tired of hiding who he really is not just from the world at large but also from his family. All of this means that once his secret starts to unravel he can’t quite see it as a bad thing. Sure, coming out is scary and the possible consequences could be devastating but Tennant is ready to face them head on.
The situation for Jared is somewhat easier. He’s a trainer and no longer finds himself in the limelight a professional hockey player can’t escape. Besides the fact that he’s bi rather than gay seems to make his situation more acceptable in some weird way. His issues stem from different sources. While he is definitely attracted to Tennant, he’s all too aware that he’s older than him. Add to that the fact that he’s been a family friend of the Rowe family for a long time, and he has enough reasons to fight the pull towards Tennant he experiences.
But, when the two men do give in to the attraction between them it is almost immediately clear they’re playing for keeps, which means that they have to deal with potentially bad reactions from Tennant’s family, the management of the Harrisburg Railers, not to mention the world at large.
This was a sweet romance, especially since any of the minimal angst in the story wasn’t caused by conflicts between Tennant and Jared but rather by the tension their having to come out created. I refuse to give away how all of that plays out, but will mention that I was very, very happy with the direction of the story. The story made me smile quite often. The banter between our two protagonists was wonderful. I loved all the Pokemon references and was charmed by both the Russian goalie and Jared’s son.
Overall this was a charming and comfy read. And despite the fact that it hasn’t triggered any interest in hockey in me, I’m still eager to read the next book in this series. J
RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn't with family either reading or writing.
The last time she had a week's break from writing she didn't like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn't defeat.
V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and two Jersey steers.
When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.
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