I can’t even begin to express how much fun I had reading this book. I don’t know what I was expecting, but this was not it—and I mean that in the best of ways! The characters were nothing like what I’d thought they’d be and I was so pleasantly surprised to find that they were EVEN BETTER! The whole story was even better than I could’ve anticipated. I’m always wary going into sports romances because I’d hate to be disappointed by finding a bunch of clichés and also because I’m terrible with sports lingo—but this book made me throw all those worries out the window.
First of all, I can’t even begin to express how much I love the accurate portrayal of anxiety in Lainey’s (the female MC) character. Not only did Helena Hunting manage to write about the struggles she faced in response to her constant anxiety, but she made sure it was well known that Lainey was an incredibly strong, intelligent and independent person, even with those struggles. She was relatable and she felt real and I loved reading all about her.
Another thing I adored was how RJ (the male MC) was written as a character who is so grounded. He wasn’t one of those hot-headed, cocky, arrogant hockey players (not that I don’t love those characters too when they’re well written). He was sweet and sensitive and he had a such a big heart that was clear to see throughout the book and it was such a welcome change from what I usually see in books. It made the love between the two characters so much more profound to read about and I just wanted to protect the both of them at all costs.
And one of the biggest things that I loved in this book is how family is such a big theme. We don’t just see Lainey and RJ in this book—we also see their families and what their relationships with them are like and how that’s formed them as people and influences the way they live. It was refreshing and it adds so much key perspective to the whole story. It was brillant.
There was one part of the plot that I found to be a little predictable near the middle of the book, but maybe that’s because I had anticipated it happening and was looking for the clues? It didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the story though—which is what’s important to me in the end! I won’t say too much in fear of spoiling, but I will say that I love how that event linked into the title of the book. It was seriously perfect.
I cannot wait to see where the next book in the series goes! I’ve taken a sneak peak and know it involves another hockey player and RJ’s sister (whom he’s really close with), so this should be interesting… 😏