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Paperback – 22 Sep 2018
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We are first introduced to Ryker. With hockey in his blood being third generation he always knew what his future held and he worked towards it, though it helps a lot having hockey royalty as a father that now coaches a team. When he heads to camp to put himself through the paces and improves his form, he meets Jacob who intrigues and annoys him at every turn.
Jacob grew up on a farm, working alongside his father and earning a scholarship to play hockey at college, enabling to take courses that will help him to save the struggling farm. When he attends camp Eagles teammates to better themselves as players, he meets and is instantly annoyed by Ryker. Entitled and handed everything he wants, what does he know of struggle. As hard as he tries though, Ryker breaks through his tough act and creates a relationship that they both crave. Mutual attraction and respect on the ice bring them together but things were never meant to last more than the six weeks. Until Ryker changes the game on Jacob and gives them a chance but Jacob has to be willing to take it.
This is a great story of two young men, learning more about themselves and each other as they grow both as people and players. I love books with two characters from very different backgrounds coming together as it shows that no matter what or where you come from there is someone out there for you, you just have to be willing to look and accept them.
Ryker and Jacob both have a strong sense of self, know what they want going forward and are working hard towards it. It's heartwarming to read when each man can help the other in some way whether it's hockey, schoolwork or personally. Especially when a big moment happens and decisions have to be made about what is important.
We get some great secondary characters, family and friends that provide support, lightheartedness, and connection to the world around them. We are always focused on the MC's but these people have impact on the story line and the men themselves.
I have never watched ice hockey but these authors converted me a long time ago to reading stories containing the sport. It can get intense and rough but is a fantastic way of bringing a team and individuals together.
I highly recommend this book and am looking forward to the next one in the series and to see what couple get their story next.
I received an ARC from the publisher and am happily giving a review
In his book Ryker is trying to decide how to begin his hockey career, whether to stay in university with a team he isn't happy with or whether he needs to make some changes. While at a training camp he meets players from Owatanna U in particular Jacob.
Ooh boy Jacob has it tough and is close to drowning under the pressure. He needs to stay on top of his game to keep his place and uni so he can get is degree to help save his family's dairy farm. Money is a constant struggle. Plus he’s from a small rural town and we know how that goes for a young guy who likes other guys. Jacob immediately hates Ryker. He thinks he has it easy with his money, family hockey dynasty and his good looks. Admittedly on paper you might think that Ryker would be an arrogant and entitled but he’s really not. He is such a sweet lovely guy and I was really behind him as he fought to get Jacob to see him for him and see the real Jacob. Theirs is a really adorably cute love. I really liked how the book ended. There was no marriage proposals or declarations to be together forever. They are both so young and their lives are going to go in different ways so i think it wouldn’t have felt right for them to get a HEA just now. A HFN is how is should be and i hope perhaps we’ll get to revisit them in years to come and then they can get their HEA.
After the events in Goal Line it was good to see get to see Ten and Jared again. Thought it was good to get a different perspective on those events (#nospoilers) and now i’m even more geared up for their Christmas novella that’s coming. Need to see what’s happening next with the couple that started the Harrisburg series and got me more interested in hockey players than i ever thought possible.
This is an absolutely excellent read - and such a brilliant idea to follow the next generation of hockey stars following a Ryker, who's father and lover featured in the Railer's series (which you should definitely read if you haven't). Having the dynasty in place, and the fact that they had been open about their sexuality makes this a much less tense read for the wrong reasons and a great read for the right ones.
Although this is set in college days, I would say that many issues are as adult as in any book, but some of the preconceptions are more relevant to youth. Jacob's anger at Ryker's being handed everything on a plate - and Ryker's lack of awareness that this was an issue. It was thanks to that innocence that the future relationship seemed much more real and grounded. It was also a great lesson in differing priorities and wants.
Jacob may have had a hard-working, simple life, but he recognises his obligations to the family ranch and that hockey will pay for him to study and improve the farm. His devotion and dedication to both his parents, his heritage and his future is inspiring, and courageous. It is lovely to see how his relationship with his father grows through the book.
I definitely recommend this book to you - as a enjoyable and hopeful book of two young men who overcome their preconceptions and form a strong bond. I look forward to Scott's story.
~~Wicked Reads Review Team~~
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