By Sarina Bowen
Release Date: April 13, 2021
Ebook Available from WV Reads!
3 Stars - A fine sports romance from a series I was unfamiliar with when I started. It's easy to jump into this little world of not just men's hockey but women's. There's plenty of humor and heart here. But I wished that the heroine Sylvie wasn't quite so wishy washy and the hero was more mature. Both are sweethearts but a little selfish.
Sarina Bowen has written some wonderful romance novels, but she kills me when the two leads hold themselves back. And in this case again, they do it while actually having some kind of fling or quasi relationship. I loved Sylvie in the very beginning. Respected her girl power, felt her struggles, especially with her parents. But the hearts in her eyes with Bryce made her seem fifteen, especially since she wouldn't let it go. Anton is very forthcoming about his immaturity. But he's trying to improve at least. He also has a major thing with Sylvie, was sort of willing to take whatever she would give him.
So basically, this is a well written novel. I liked the dialouge, the light feel. Sylvie's mom felt like one of the most memorable characters. But parts of the plot just jabbed me the wrong way. The Bryce thing... I just didn't see his appeal. There was no spark there. So it was painful to see him as an obstacle for their relationship. I really dislike love triangles and had the blurb been more honest about this one, I probably wouldn't have even tried. None of the others in this series have caught my attention like the True North and Security series. Also, the amount of guy/girls sports debate felt like a major distraction. I find it super hard to believe the team owner would be required to supply the mens bathroom with tampons and bidets because she bought them for the girls. I think this was added for humor and to sort of lightly embrace the weird gender progressions we're having today. But it honestly got more page time than Sylvie and Anton really having a healthy and happy relationship. In the end, big fans of the author and/or hockey romances will probably delight in this. For me and other readers, it will probably more of a pleasant distraction or filler read between more exciting books.
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