New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett goes for a hat trick with the latest romance in a sexy series about cool-as-ice hockey players and the women heating up their lives.
Warning: The following contains spoilers from a cliffhanger in Garrett.
Rising star Zack Grantham has been stuck in a downward spiral of grief that has put his career on hold. Back on the road with the Carolina Cold Fury, still crippled by emotional baggage, and now a single dad, he’s in need of some serious help with his son. But while the nerdy new nanny wins his son’s heart, Zack isn’t sure he’s ready for a woman’s touch—even after getting a glimpse of the killer curves she’s hiding under those baggy clothes.
Kate Francis usually keeps men like Zack at a distance. Though his athlete’s body is honed to perfection, he refuses to move on with his life—and besides, he’s her boss. Still, the sparks between them are undeniable, tempting Kate to turn their professional relationship into a personal one. But before she makes a power play for Zack’s wounded heart, Kate will have to open him up again and show him that love is worth the fight.
Ever since Garrett ended on a cliffhanger with Gina’s death, I’ve been on the fence about reading Zack, simply because I didn’t know if I could read about a character grieving for his woman. The feelings would have been too heartbreaking for me and if the book was done with less sensitivity than I expected, I’d hate it all the way to hell and back.
But the book was not what I expected at all. It wasn’t about a man who had lost the will to live after his love died. Instead, it was about a man who was picking up the broken pieces and trying to keep them together for his sake and for the sake of his son. And that was what precisely kept me reading until the end.
The book starts with Zack sitting in a strip club, watching a stripper dance around a pole. And here’s the interesting part: From what I understood, Zack wasn’t there to pick up a woman to warm his bed. No, Zack was there because he wanted to feel. Lust, anger, indigestion…anything. Zack was afraid he’d lost the ability to feel anything around him after Gina’s death and that made me instantly sympathetic to his plight.
Special points for Zack’s thought processes and his inner monologue. He was straight forward, hardly ever playing games, and getting straight to the point instead of taking a roundabout a bush. He was a bit of a douche when it came to understanding his own feelings but in the long run, I definitely liked Zack more than not. Inspite of being a single father with a barely four year old son and a star hockey player, Zack never let his career affect his relationship with his son, Ben. He was a loving and doting father and not once did I think that his indiscretions in his bed (which I’ll get to, in a while) would affect Ben. Also, Zack’s interactions with Ben = uncontrollable ovary fluttering. For real.
Enter: Roberta Kate Francis. Nanny to Ben Grantham. Bed-buddy to his father, Zack Grantham.
Kate was dorky and charming and fucking adorable. With no verbal filter, she said what came to mind, usually with hilarious results. She was loyal and trustworthy, and she was especially great with Ben. If I did;t know better, I’d say she was his mother, by the way that she took care of him. BUT, I also thought that she was a Mary Sue, in which she was perfect and made no mistakes. She came from humble backgrounds and she was proud of her past, sad as it was. But I saw the cliched “I’m-Sexy-And-I-Don’t-Know-It” thing going on with her. She wore baggy clothes to hide her curvaceous and perfect body and big ass spectacles to hide her perfect blue hair…you see where I’m going? This, right here, is my only problem with Sawyer Bennett heroines. They’re typical and there’s nothing I’d say about them was unique.
Then there came a part in the book where Kate and Zack tumbled into bed and the book because very interesting.
I’m not opposed to the relationship between Kate and Zack. Like I said earlier, Zack was a great father and put his son before everything else. Also, Kate’s love for Ben was just as fierce as his father’s. Kate and Zack got into a whole Friends-With-Benefits scene, with Zack making the conditions very clear—it would only ever be lust between them. And Kate agreed totally, if not a little skeptically. And then she did fall in love with him and that just complicated the whole thing. As for whether or not they made it through their issues intact, or Zack chickened out and put ben’s interests first is to be found out by the readers. However, when they were together, Zack and Kate were explosive! Their chemistry was fantastic and I loved how Kate just got Zack and she constantly made him smile.
Another great thing about the Cold Fury Hockey novels? They always show you where the characters of the previous books stand now, while also giving you a sneak-peak of the characters of the next book in queue. And may I say, it was amazing to read about Alex and Sutton again. Alex is my absolute favourite and suffice to say, that hasn’t changed yet. Garrett and Olivia also make a brief cameo and that was pretty damn cool too 🙂
Once again, Sawyer Bennett crafts an excellent story about tough hockey players with hearts of gold and Zack, with his story of redemption and his journey back into the light with the help of a quirky heroine who is the true lead of the book.
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Up for Grabs!
Flirt and Loveswept mugs + eBook copies of: ROCK IT by Jennifer Chance, AFTER MIDNIGHT by Kathy Clark, ALEX by Sawyer Bennett, WILD ON YOU by Tina Wainscott, PLAIN JAYNE by Laura Drewry, and ACCIDENTAL COWGIRL by Maggie McGinnis
Series Order and Purchase Links
Click on the cover to purchase from Amazon US. Each book can be read as a standalone.