Saturday, January 28, 2017

Book Review: Breakaway (Scoring Chances, #1) by Avon Gale

Drafted to play for the Jacksonville Sea Storm, an NHL affiliate, twenty-year-old Lane Courtnall’s future looks bright, apart from the awkwardness he feels as a gay man playing on a minor league hockey team. He's put his foot in his mouth a few times and alienated his teammates. Then, during a rivalry game, Lane throws off his gloves against Jared Shore, enforcer for the Savannah Renegades. It’s a strange way to begin a relationship.

Jared’s been playing minor league hockey for most of his career. He’s bisexual and doesn’t care if anyone knows. But he’s determined to avoid another love affair after the last one left him devastated. Out of nowhere a one-nighter with rookie Lane Courtnall gives him second thoughts. Lane reminds Jared why he loves the game and why love might be worth the risk. In turn, Jared hopes to show Lane how to be comfortable with himself on and off the ice. But they’re at different points in their careers, and both men will have to decide what they value most.

Jewel's rating:

When I started reading Breakaway, I knew next to nothing about hockey. And now? Heh, I still don't. But I didn't let that little thing keep me from enjoying this fun, low-angst story.

Lane Courtnall is a 20 year old rookie, with the Jacksonville Sea Storm, with a lot of potential on the ice and not a lot of social skills off it. He's not the sharpest tool in the shed, and he's blurty as all hell, and by that I mean he has absolutely no filter, but he's got a good heart, once you figure out he really isn't trying to be mean. I've got to say, though, Jared has the patience of a saint. If I had to live with someone like Lane, it would probably end in homicide. In the story, though, I found Lane oddly endearing. Lane is gay, but doesn't have any sexual experience. Most people find him a little odd. Maybe because he is a bit odd.

Jared Shore, is a bit older at 32 and is currently the enforcer for the Savannah Renegades. He's been playing hockey a long time and he's got a reputation as being a fighter. A well-earned reputation. Jared knows that his professional hockey playing days are numbered, but he doesn't have any idea what he wants to do after, so he just tries not to think too much about it. Sexually speaking, Jared is up for pretty much anything with whomever, male or female. Jared lost his love for the game a long time ago, but he still plays.

While I could much more easily identify with Jared, I really loved them both together. Lane took to sex like he's breathing air and their dirty talk was pretty hot. Lane and Jared were also really good for each other. Lane helped Jared remember why he loved playing hockey and Jared helped Lane be a better player by helping his confidence and helping him know when to stand up for himself. So it was really a win-win for them both.

I also actually loved all the trash-talk on the ice. And that the opposing teams would brawl on the ice and drink and party together off it, gave me a whole new perspective on sports. Maybe I should try to figure out this hockey thing (I probably won't, though).

The story ends on a strong HFN, and I don't really doubt our boys will progress to an HEA.

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Happy Reading!

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