Book Review

Book Review: Outscored (Rinkside in the Rockies #3) by Aven Ellis- 5 Stars

Whitney is a seasonal decorator who meets hockey player Gavin while shopping for gnomes at a flea market! The two hit it off immediately. Whitney is so cute and unique. I love her job-getting to decorate homes and businesses for a particular season or holiday sounds so exciting! She’s great at what she does with her routine client base, but doesn’t know how to put herself out their for new business which is getting her some flak at work. Gavin is the team captain, and he’s more than ready to be back on the ice after a traumatic and painful injury. He doesn’t want to let anyone down or seem weak, or like a failure. They encourage each other while struggling with their own anxieties and worries and dealing with past relationship failures.

Their friendship and romance felt so real and sweet. I love all their fun quirks, inside jokes, and the chemistry they shared.  The romance is swoony and heartwarming but like every relationship, it comes with its fair share of drama, conflict, and misunderstanding. This book is also the perfect romantic Halloween read due to a super sweet scene at Gavin’s Halloween party!

I adore Aven’s books, and this is no exception! Especially since the heroine is a redhead named Whitney! 😉 Check this one out if you enjoy reading romance, hockey themed books, or fun, lighthearted novels with a happy ending!

Thank you to the author for my copy of this book!

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Free Book Alert! Sugar and Ice by Aven Ellis

Josephine Rossi has recovered from a broken heart, but has vowed that she’s all about the desserts now as a recipe tester for Bake It! Magazine. Cheesecake never breaks your heart. Unless it cracks on the top, but still, it tastes amazing if you bake it just right. She knows what to do in the kitchen as far as making luscious desserts. Men? Apparently she’s not so good at figuring them out, so she refuses to bother. Josephine knows it is safer to stay in the kitchen than to take another chance with her heart.

Denver Mountain Lions forward Cade Callahan is passionate about hockey, but is also about finding love. He thought he had it once, but a disastrous romance last holiday season has him keeping his heart in check. While he’s fearless on the ice, he’s guarded with his heart. Cade is determined history won’t repeat itself again. He won’t let his guard down until he’s certain he’s met The One.

However, Cupid’s arrow might just strike when these two least expect it. When an oven goes out, and a cheesecake for testing has to be baked, and Cade just happens to live in the same building with a working oven…Well, things other than cheesecake might just heat up in the kitchen. Can these two passionate people learn to trust their hearts again? Can love override fear for Josephine and Cade? And will they find the combination of sugar and ice is the sweetest one of all? 

One of my favorite authors, Aven Ellis, has a free book on Amazon today! Sugar and Ice, book one of the Rinkside in the Rockies series, is a hockey romance that is oh-so-sweet and will be the perfect book for Valentine’s Day reading!

This couple will steam up both the kitchen and the ice rink! I love JoJo and Cade, and I think you will too if you enjoy fun, contemporary romances!

Click here for my review!
Click here to get it on Amazon!

 

Book Review

Book Review: After the Game (The Field Party #3) by Abbi Glines-4 Stars

 

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The third book in The Field Party series tells tells Brady’s story. I’ve enjoyed this series as it’s set in a small town that’s centered around football which is exactly how I grew up so it resonates with me.

Two years ago Riley Young and her family were shunned from Lawton when Riley accused Rhett Lawton of rape. No one believed Riley, that a Lawton boy could do such a thing. Now Riley and her parents are back in Lawton to take care of her grandmother who has Alzheimer’s, along with Riley’s daughter, Bryony.

Brady Higgins, football star and all around southern gentleman, like everyone else in town, hates Riley for the “lie” she told about Rhett but after an unexpected car ride, he starts to doubt that Rhett is innocent. Riley and Brady start to spend more time together as she literally had no friends left. I loved how Brady didn’t care if he was seen with Riley-even though he was nervous at first due to how Gunner would react. In the previous books we get a glimpse of just how sweet Brady is, so it was great to have a whole book dedicated to him. Like any teenager he cares about what people thinks to an extent but deep down he has a great heart and is a romantic! Riley and the boys were all friends from a young age but this trauma obviously caused them all to drift apart.

I sort of had an issue with how Riley’s rape and her being shunned was just kind of glossed over. Brady believed her, but no one really seemed to understand the magnitude of what happened. Overall though I’m glad I got to read Riley and Brady’s story and I’m looking forward to the next book in this series!

Book Review

Book Review: Breakout by Stephanie Kay-4 Stars

Breakout is a sweet but steamy hockey romance!

Penny met Ethan in Italy after she dumped her fiance for screwing around with other girls. They divulge very little about their personal lives to each other but spend their days touring the country and exploring each other…

Imagine Penny’s surprise when she runs in to Ethan at a bar in her hometown. He’s confused as to why she ran out without a goodbye in Italy after all the chemistry they had between them, but Penny doesn’t want to have anything to do with him as her trust in men has been broken. Ethan tries to prove to her what they had in Italy can be more than just a fling, but can Penny find it in her heart to open up and let him in?

I really enjoyed the developing romance and obstacles we see Penny and Ethan overcome as they’ve both been hurt in relationships before. This was a quick but fun and sexy read! This is my first book by the author and I can’t wait to read more from her.

Book Review

Book Review: Squeeze Play (Washington DC Soaring Eagles #1) by Aven Ellis-5 Stars

Aven is back with a new book and a new sport! Squeeze Play is a baseball romance set in Washington DC.

Hayley has just gotten her dream job working for a dyslexia focused non-profit in DC. She has no time for romance, especially boys her age-they are too immature and unfocused.

Brody is the catcher for the Washington Soaring Eagles. All his life he’s been compared to his twin Brady and led to believe all he is is a dumb jock.

After a super embarrassing yet hilarious encounter at a coffee shop Brody and Hayley start hanging out and talking about everything under the sun-from kitschy appliances to favorite cereal combos! As they start to grow closer, their own insecurities threaten to pull them apart. Will Hayley and Brody be able to continue their love story under the cherry blossoms or will their fears cause them to strike out in love?

Even if you don’t like baseball, don’t understand it, or you’re just in it for the baseball butts, Squeeze Play is a home-run for everyone because it’s hilarious, the friendships and relationships are realistic, and the romance is sweet yet passionate. This book will make you laugh, cry, and melt your heart!

*I was gifted an ARC from the author.*

Book Review

Book Review: Playing Defense (Dallas Demons #5) by Aven Ellis-5 Stars

Aven is back with another Dallas Demons hockey romance! In Playing Defense we meet Swiss stud JP and oreo obsessed fitness model Reese! Being that this is another installment in the Demons series, we get to catch up with all of our fave couples which I love!

After an intense fitness shoot Reese is tired and sweaty but dying for a burger and Oreo shake and unexpectedly ends up sharing fries and onion rings with JP…only to start the convo by telling JP she normally bathes before going out! Thankfully that doesn’t scare him away and the dates just get better and better!

All of the cute little surprises and fun adventures JP and Reese do for one another is simply adorable, their chemistry is HOT, and the relationship just seems to flow perfectly like they were always meant to be, but they do have to work through their fair share of conflicts and problems. JP is OVER women and relationships. He wants to fall in love, get married, and have kids, but all the women he meets aren’t ready for anything serious. Reese doesn’t want to open her heart after being hurt, she knows the “love” her parents had wasn’t real so she just doesn’t want to let anyone close to her. Can Oreos, Turkish coffee, disdain for ice cubes, and fun graphic tees pave the way for these soul mates to realize their love is real?

I received an ARC of Playing Defense from the author. My thoughts and opinions are my own. 🙂

 

Book Review

Book Review: Save the Date (Chicago on Ice #3) by Aven Ellis-5 Stars

Luca is a hockey goalie obsessed with constantly trying to improve his game. Collins is an events planner, and she does a great job, but her heart is in working with horses.

The two hit it off instantly at a mutual friend’s engagement party. After a few dates, it’s obvious they fit together perfectly. Collins tries desperately for Luca to see that he is already great at what he does and shouldn’t devote so much time to training and nothing else. Luca has his mind made up that he will help Collins’ dream of working with horses come true. But between Luca’s unwavering hockey dedication, and Collins’ fear of hurting Luca like she did with her last boyfriend, can the two of them overcome the obstacles and believe their love is real and meant to last?

This book gave me butterflies. Every single one of Aven’s books seems to be a favorite, but honestly, Luca and Collins’ story is in the top spot at the moment! The easy way they joke between each other over Collins’ love of pumpkin spice and seasonal flavored treats, and the fact that Luca loves every single freckle on Collins’ face (that her mom desperately wants her to cover) to the more intimate moments-the heat between these two is enough to melt the ice but the sweet romance just warms your heart.

Save the date for this winning romance-it releases 5/17/17!!

I was gifted a copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own. Thank you Aven!

Book Review

Book Review: Until Friday Night by Abbi Glines-4.5 Stars

Maggie, a girl who witnessed her father murder her mother and has since stopped speaking, because if she doesn’t speak, she doesn’t have to talk about that day… moves in with her mother’s brother Boone, his wife Coralee, and their son Brady who is the same age as Maggie. Brady is the hotshot school quarterback. He tells all his football buddies that Maggie is off limits, but she’s beautiful. She’s obviously a good listener, and has a kind face, so it’s not too long before one of Brady’s friends is trying to flirt with her.

West’s dad is dying of cancer. West is a big-time football star like Brady. He’s hot and he knows it, and could have any girl at the school. He puts on a front so he doesn’t show his hurt from watching his dad slowly die more and more each day. As West and Maggie begin to form a connection only the two of them could share, the line between friendship and romance becomes blurred. Maggie knows the pain of watching a parent die, so she’s able to be there for West when he just needs someone to listen and relate to his fears and pain.

Gosh, this book really tore up my emotions, I was sobbing so hard by the end! I really felt the pain and grief that West and Maggie were feeling, and the way they connected over such heartache was terrible and heartwrenching, but the way they helped each other heal and work through their pain was so sweet.

I can’t wait to read the next two books in this series!

 

Book Review

Book Review: On Thin Ice by Aven Ellis-5 Stars

Yay, a new one by Aven Ellis!

This is another installment of the Dallas Demons series. “On Thin Ice” tells the story of Nate Johannson’s younger sister Holly, and Matt “The Wild One” Rhinelander. Matt is a huge party boy, always with another model on his arm in Instagram and Tumble (Haha!) (Tumblr) pictures. Holly loves to stay in and work on her fantasy novel or sticker in her planner while wearing one of her many crazy socks out of her impressive collection and a comfy Harry Potter shirt. She has social anxiety a secret she has kept from everyone,  the complete opposite of Matt, who loves being wild in a crowd. But she’s had a crush on him for two years! She knows she will never live up to his dating expectations-she’s no glamorous model. But maybe the Matt everyone sees isn’t who he wants to be? No one knows he’s been hurt as a child-abandoned by his parents, and hockey helped him flourish, but when he becomes a famous player, his parents suddenly come around and want money.

When Matt and Holly begin spending more time together, the chemistry is undeniable. Matt is helping her through her anxiety worries, and she’s trying to keep him out of trouble with the team by not being so wild. But big brother Nate is determined Matt is no good for Holly-in fact, she just needs to tame him so that he isn’t cut from the team. But Holly knows that Matt and her belong together for more than that. Can Matt believe someone can love him and see inside his heart, and believe he’s not just trash? Can Holly get past her anxiety, and routine of scrutinizing her every move, worrying she’s not good enough?

Like all of Aven’s novels, the characters and relationships are believable. The girls in the story are ones you just see yourself being besties with, and the guys are just swoon-worthy. I loved reconnecting with past characters and meeting new ones that will hopefully get their own love story next! 😉

Thank you to Aven for gifting me a copy of this novel!!!

Book Review

Book Review: Trivial Pursuits by Aven Ellis-5 Stars

 

trivial pursuits

TriviaPlayOrPass!: Who writes the best contemporary hockey romance novels?

What does a tattooed, cat loving, elementary school volunteering, sexy black haired hockey player and a beautiful platinum blond, jewelry making, Zingers addicted, kale loving girl have in common? The addictive online trivia game, TriviaPlayOrPass! It was fate that brought them together one day at an after school program. They realized they had been playing against each other in TriviaPlayOrPass! Landon loves the witty, sarcastic fun he was able to have with Livy over the trivia questions, the fact that she saw LANDON, the goofy, trivia addict and not LANDY, the flirty, popular hockey player. Livy can’t believe she’s been playing THE Landon Holder in TriviaPlayOrPass!. On the game, they were just two people who’d never met, having fun over some trivia.

Connectivity thus far has been my favorite Aven Ellis novel, but I fell HARD in love with Landon and Livy. Livy had sworn off the athletes, those players who can’t keep their eyes on one woman, after having her heart ripped out in college by a boyfriend, but after one date with Landon, she knows he’s different. Yet she can’t force her feelings of her past out of her heart and mind, and that comes up to hurt both her and Landon a couple times. His dad hurt his mom when Landon was younger, and he vows to never treat a lady like that. He basically doesn’t date but has one night flings that mean nothing- no commitments, no settling down, until he finds Livy. So they both have pain when it comes to relationships, and it takes awhile for them to push their fears aside, but they realize they can’t be without each other. Livy wants to make a career out of making jewelry, and it was so sweet to see Landon be so supportive of her, and helping drive customers to her business.

Aven’s books have this wonderful quality about them, that allows you to simply lose yourself in her world, and find yourself smiling to yourself, sometimes shedding a tear, while reading. Her books are literally the BEST thing, like eating a cupcake with the perfect cake to frosting ratio, on a sunny and breezy Saturday with no cares in the world.

I loved that  we get to catch up with Bree (married and pregnant!) from Surviving the Rachel, and of course Beckett and Aubrey from The Aubrey Rules. If you’re looking for a wonderful romance that will leave you with a smile on your face for days, pick up one of Aven’s books right away! Trivial Pursuits is book two in the Chicago on Ice series and releases April 20, 2016!

 

*I received a copy of this novel from the author. All opinions are my own!*