He never saw her coming …
After almost a year away from hockey, Bastian Durand’s return to the game should be a triumph.
Instead he’s taken down by the Chicago Rebels mascot.
It can’t get worse. Or maybe it can. Because the human inside the Rowdy Rebel costume is none other than Pepper Calhoun.
His friend’s sister.
His coach’s daughter.
And the woman Bastian has wanted for the longest time.
Pepper has always been a magnet for bad luck and now she’s ruined superstar Bast Durand’s big comeback. So that tracks. Everyone, from her father and brother to the fans and press, heck, even the NHL commissioner, hates her.
Everyone but the one guy who should.
Hiding away is the only thing she can think of, except Bast has the same idea. To her utter dismay, he’s determined to protect Pepper from anyone who dares breathe a word against her.
And to convince her that crashing on the ice isn’t all that different from … falling in love.
Bast and Pepper’s book has it all–friend’s little sister/boss’s daughter with a side helping of there’s only one bed! In a snowstorm! And oh, yeah, our hero is felled by his fatal flaw…being easily distracted by bewbs. (Not the heroine’s initially, sadly. But that will soon change ;))
Though Pepper and Bast have a bit of a rocky start–her reputation precedes her, and he’s not in the greatest place mentally or physically when they first meet *or* when they next run into each other (pun intended!)–their chemistry is strong from the very beginning. Throw in the aforementioned snow, a lack of heat and that solitary place to sleep, and did I mention there’s a hot tub??? plus, we already know how Bast can be distracted–and their coming together seems inevitable. But can their relationship survive the real world spotlight?
I loved this book! Though Bast was more than a little prickly at times, once you saw what was going on in his head it made a little more sense that he was. And he took ownership of his own mistakes by the end and did a decent job of making amends, so…redemption achievement unlocked 😉 As always it was really fun to see all the other Rebels players (Kershaw’s nickname-creating abilities are still on point, as always!), and it was especially awesome to see the Bast/Reid sibling dynamic from the other side after getting Reid’s POV in Dear Roomie . For those new to the series, it should also work pretty well as a standalone–especially the first half which is mostly made up of road trip and snowed-in time–but anyone who can read a Kate Meader book and see all the series characters enjoying each other’s company in that story and not need to read all the others is…well, I don’t know what kind of person can do that. But I do know we’re probably not ever going to be book besties, because…why??? 😉
Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.