Series: Brooklyn Bruisers #2
Genres: Sports Romance
Source: ARC, NetGalley
Also in this series: Rookie Move, Pipe Dreams, Brooklynaire, Overnight Sensation, Superfan, Sure Shot
Also by this author: Us, Bittersweet, Rookie Move, Pipe Dreams, Brooklynaire, Speakeasy, Fireworks, Overnight Sensation, Superfan, Moonlighter, Man Cuffed, Heartland, Sure Shot, Lies and Lullabies, Loverboy, Roommate
From the USA Today bestselling author of Rookie Move comes the second novel in the series that s hot enough to melt the ice.
He s a fighter in the rink, but he s about to learn that playing nice can help you score...
As team captain and enforcer, Patrick O'Doul puts the bruise in the Brooklyn Bruisers. But after years of hard hits, O'Doul is feeling the burn, both physically and mentally. He conceals his pain from his coach and trainers, but when his chronic hip injury becomes too obvious to ignore, they send him for sessions with the team s massage therapist. After breaking up with her long-term boyfriend, Ari Bettini is in need of peace of mind. For now, she s decided to focus on her work: rehabilitating the Bruisers MVP. O'Doul is easy on the eyes, but his reaction to her touch is ice cold. Ari is determined to help O'Doul heal, but as the tension between them turns red hot, they both learn that a little TLC does the body good..."
I ADORED book 1 in this series so I was super excited to snag book 2, Hard Hitter. O’doul was such a wonderful character in book 1-kind, welcoming, and supportive. I loved getting to know him better. Plus, you get some insight into Ari, who you also meet in book 1!
So, I was interested in why Patrick hated being touched so much. He obviously was not a virgin, so he did allow some touching! But, he is really uncomfortable with getting a massage. Ari is determined to help him overcome this because she really feels she can help him. She is a bit of a hippy type (massage, meditation, visualization, yoga, etc). I liked getting to know both of them. Ari and Patrick are complex characters and that isn’t always something you see in sports romance. Patrick isn’t a manwhore!
The build up between the two is some what slower, then they dance around their feelings for a while. Ari is afraid that a relationship with a player would get her fired, but Patrick is willing to do whatever it takes to win her over. The scene where he enlists the help of the team for ways to woo a woman is hysterical!
What I love about all of Sarina Bowen’s books is that they are realistic. The characters are flawed in various, unique ways that add depth to the story. Its about so much more than a professional hockey player. Hockey is his job, and thats it. Its not his existence or anything. It was that way for Patrick in this story, and for Leo in the previous story. I love that about both of them. Ari’s ex provided more suspense than I anticipated which was really a pleasant surprise. The storyline with Vince was compelling and believable.
I am DYING to get my hands on book 3 because I have got to figure out Queen Lauren! What the heck is her problem? And please tell me there will be a book about Becca and Nate?!? Please!!!
- POV: 3rd with alternating focus
- Tears: no
- Trope: famous, hockey
- Triggers: View Spoiler »Ari did have an abusive boyfriend in the past, but the abuse is not descriptive « Hide Spoiler
- Series/Standalone: stand alone within
- Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »no « Hide Spoiler
- HEA: View Spoiler »yes « Hide Spoiler