My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Sooooo, if bad boy redemption arcs with a side-order of needing to find self-forgiveness are your thing, this book is gonna hit that perfectly.
Troy Barrett hasn’t been a good boy, in fact, he’s been an absolute wanker at times (he’s a secondary, small part character in Ryan’s book Common Goal and as we meet him, he’s been transferred to Ottawa after a major bust up with his former best friend the sleazy as f*ck Dallas Kent.
But, as is often the case with guys like this, his outward homophobia and running with the crowd hides not only a secret about his sexual identity, but also a powerful need to feel like he belongs.
His mum is awesome, his dad is everything wrong about alpha male parenting, a wannabe ice hockey player who never made it big, a bigot and a bully, Troy’s grown up under his overbearing presence for most of his life.
This is a really simple plot in essence, but Rachel spins it into a deeply expansive and complex narrative which takes in more than just Troy’s need to better himself.
It throws in interference at the top level when Troy continues with his campaign to support the anonymous but not silent victims of his former best friend Kent and it’s wrapped inside a plot of self-discovery, of healing, of finding out that your team having your back and being genuinely supportive is priceless.
And it’s about love. Not only Troy learning to love who he is and where his career has taken him, but also his love for Harris, who is just an awesomely crafted character.
Add in the absolute sarcastic and ever brilliant Ilya Rozanov
(and I CANNOT wait for book six and finally see the world discover him and Shane Hollander’s near decade long relationship!)
and a ridiculously cute dog called Chiron and this book is just everything I want in a sports romance.
#ARC kindly received from the publishers Carina Press via NetGalley in return for an honest and unbiased review