I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
US: by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy
Release Date: March 8, 2016
Pages: • Format: eARC
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Can your favorite hockey players finish their first season together undefeated?
Five months in, NHL forward Ryan Wesley is having a record-breaking rookie season. He’s living his dream of playing pro hockey and coming home every night to the man he loves–Jamie Canning, his longtime best friend turned boyfriend. There’s just one problem: the most important relationship of his life is one he needs to keep hidden, or else face a media storm that will eclipse his success on the ice.
Jamie loves Wes. He really, truly does. But hiding sucks. It’s not the life Jamie envisioned for himself, and the strain of keeping their secret is taking its toll. It doesn’t help that his new job isn’t going as smoothly as he’d hoped, but he knows he can power through it as long as he has Wes. At least apartment 10B is their retreat, where they can always be themselves.
Or can they? When Wes’s nosiest teammate moves in upstairs, the threads of their carefully woven lie begin to unravel. With the outside world determined to take its best shot at them, can Wes and Jamie develop major-league relationship skills on the fly?
Warning: contains sexual situations, a vibrating chair, long-distance sexytimes, and proof that hockey players look hot in any shade of green.
That’s my underwhelmed face. dammit, why do I always do this to myself? I put all these great first books in a series on a pedestal and build the second one so high up in my mind, and then when I read it I’m left pissed off. So note to self dummy don’t do it anymore. I’m a little perturbed. This is two authors who I have never read before, and what they were able to do to book one says a lot. The one thing that I loved most about book one was that they were MEN. They didn’t compromise their genders and make them into female characters with male body parts in my opinion. They were men acting, and talking men so I expected the same thing at least for this book. And that’s the conundrum for book two. Where the hell was the communication at? Did we trade in talking things out for copious amounts of sex. Le Sigh, sex doesn’t fix every damn thing. I was exasperated by the amount of sex that was in this book. It didn’t seem special to me anymore. It totally lost the magic juju from book. Another thing, what the hell happened to Jamie. He had a total personality reboot. I didn’t like it, and change him back please.
Let’s start with Jamie. Jamie who was easy-going, laid back, communicative, and honest must have taken a break off from book one going to book two. I didn’t like how he was portrayed in the story. The plot was so/so throughout the story, but then we have more often than not the entire story dealing with Wes. But when it came to Jamie his part seemed mediocre at best. He came off like the angry, jealous spouse something that I could never see him be. His descriptions from book one doesn’t compute to who he was in this book. I do think it was a bit unfair to let it go on so long with them not talking things through. It kind of made a downcast cloud over the entire story. It seemed like the authors then decided to make it every new adult cliché by making the two characters have copious amounts of sex instead of trying to communicate our issues to each other. It was so frustrating to read. Everything wasn’t on Jamie, because while he wasn’t adamant to change at least Wes noticed the problem. Wes did try on numerous times to communicate with Jamie.
Oh my goodness Blake really! I mean at the end yes he was worth it, but up until those parts he was so annoying. Now this is where I was angry the most, because neither Jamie & Wes forced the issue of him giving them space. They could have easily told him to give them an hour or that he was being forceful on their space. But nothing happened. I know from all of this is seemed like I disliked everything about the story, but I did like some parts. It just seems like the bad outweighed the good for me. They did have some sweet moments between each other and those were very special. I liked the last 25% the best and it definitely stuck with me.
At long last, I’m twenty paces away, then ten. Then I’m opening our door. “Hey babe!” I call out like I always do. “I made it.” I drag my duffel over the threshold, then toss my suit coat on top, abandoning these things beside the door, because all I need now is a kiss.
Only then do I notice that our apartment smells amazing. Jamie has cooked dinner for me. Again. He is the perfect man, I swear to God.
“Hey!” he calls, emerging from the hallway leading to our bedroom. He’s wearing jeans and nothing else except—and this is unusual—a beard. “Do I know you?” He gives me a sexy smile.
“I was going to ask the same thing.” I’m staring at the sandy-blond beard. Jamie has always been clean-shaven. I mean—we’ve known each other since before facial hair. He looks different. Older, maybe.
And hot as blazes. Seriously, I can’t wait to feel that beard against my face, and maybe my balls… Jesus. The blood is already rushing south, and I’ve been home fifteen seconds.
And yet I’m just stuck there in the middle of the room for a moment, because even though it’s been eight months since Jamie and I started up together, I’m still a little stunned at my own good fortune. “Hi,” I say again, stupidly.
He walks forward, his easy gait so familiar that my heart breaks a little bit. He puts his hands on my traps and squeezes the muscle there. “Don’t go away for so long. If you do that again, I’m going to have to sneak into your hotel room on the road.”
“Promise?” I ask, and it comes out like gravel. He’s close enough now that I can smell the ocean scent of his shampoo and the beer he drank while he waited for me.
“If I ever get a winning lottery ticket and a day off, I’ll do it,” he says. “Hotel sex after a game? Sounds hot.”
Now I’m measuring the distance to our sofa and counting the layers of clothes I’ll need to remove in the next ninety seconds.