Reviewed by Morgan
Author: Avon Gale
Series: Scoring Chances #1
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 240 Pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: November 27, 2015
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: 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.
Review: Lane is a twenty year old Canadian thrown into professional hockey in a “farm league” in Florida. He’s got absolutely zero social skills, knows he’s gay, but hasn’t ever said that out loud and is a virgin.
Jared is 31, a veteran professional hockey player, with a painful past in relationships. He’s been in the “minor leagues” of hockey forever and is a bit jaded and bitter about it.
When Jared (who plays for a rival team) and Lane face off against each other in a fight on the ice one night, it starts their relationship both professionally and personally.
Over time, Lane and Jared become lovers, then boyfriends, etcetera. But… the story, the true meat of this story is not just their romance – but also their professional lives. They are at polar opposites of the hockey spectrum, but somehow their seasons mimic one another in a way that is fascinating and exhilarating.
I am going to totally fangirl this book like crazy! I laughed out loud more times than I can remember (the last time I laughed out loud like this for a book was when I read the book The Princess Bride – before it was a movie)!
Lane is HYSTERICAL. He says all the wrong things. Then all the right things, but at the wrong times. Then he has these bouts of intuition that get you right in the heart.
Jared is smart enough to “get” Lane. He’s torn between wanting to fuck him or hit him at first, but then he begins to understand him and finally love him.
Zoe, is Lane’s BFF and she’s MAGNIFICENT. God I loved this character. She’s sweet, and funny, and bi-sexual, and tatted up and tender… she helps Lane navigate all those “feelings” that people keep having and it’s both really sweet and super funny.
There is some great, great hockey. A love for Canada. Some parental angst. Some hot, hot, HOT first time sex (and second and third…). An absolute boatload of feels mixed in with tons of laughter.
I literally either bookmarked or highlighted something on nearly every damn page. It’s ridiculous how good this book is!
Jared’s brow furrowed. “How is it you seem like you know what you’re doing sometimes, and then it’s like you just got dropped off on this planet?” He kissed him to make that sound less mean.
“I don’t know. All I drink is beer and sometimes whiskey.”
Zoe snorted, slinging a towel across her shoulder. “All you drink are milkshakes and Dr Pepper, Lane. Come on.”
“I meant alcoholic stuff,” he protested. “Also I drink water. And sometimes Gatorade. I had some coconut water the other day because our goalie told me it was good. But it wasn’t.”
Zoe sighed. “You’re bad at stories sometimes.”
“Does anybody have a problem with [Lane] here sucking dick? Like, a real problem? No one’s stupid enough to think he’s gonna make you gay or something. Right? Homophobic people piss me the fuck off, but I can’t fucking play hockey and not say cocksucker. You might as well ask people in NASA not to talk about space.”
Ok – Wow – so there are SO MANY. It’s literally going down as one of the best books of my year and maybe all time… so much CHARACTER in this book…
One of the things I loved was how nicely the relationship moved along between Lane and Jared. It was both a point of concern and yet not because they both just knew after a normal amount of time that this was “it” for them.
Instead of going on and on about it, Jared had some pretty important decisions to make and he just… made them. They had huge repercussions, but this wasn’t about his waffling, it was about hockey, love, finding your true place in the world and laughter.
So… I’m recommending this book to fans of gay virgins, geeks, hockey, Canadians, humor, May/December romances and sweet love stories.
I’d seriously give this a 7 of 5 stars if I could… it was really, really amazing.
Overall Impression: It was amazing
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*