This is book #2, in the Frosh series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. To avoid spoilers, and have a better understanding of the series, I recommend reading this in order.
Following the couples of Grant & Ellie, Devon & Charlie, this story continues as we head into further mayhem at school with these adorkable peeps. Grant is through with football and trying to adjust to classes. Charlie is finding he can be more than the nerd.
All the characters must decide if the relationships are worth all the trial and error, to get to the triumph of a solid relationship. Will it be worth it in the end? I was impressed with the pace, the writing, and the solid conflicts. I was excited to turn each page to get to the next parts of the story. I look forward to the next installment in the Frosh series. I give this book a 4/5 Kitty's Paws UP!
***This copy was given in exchange for an honest review, by Netgalley and its publishers.
Jonah Gilchrist lives a double life. On the internet, he’s a fashion-blogging Tumblr celebrity. In the real world, though, being an awkward gay virgin isn’t as cute and endearing as it is online — it’s a target on his back. After years of being bullied, Jonah’s determined to start afresh at college, but it’s hard to remake yourself when you’re sharing classes with your ill-fated junior high crush.
Sebastian Rose, with his easy-going manner and great sense of humor, was one of the most popular guys in junior high. He was also one of Jonah’s only defenders. Too bad Jonah knows Sebastian’s kindness was only pity.
Bumping into each other after all these years makes it seem like the universe itself wants Jonah to have a second chance at his first love. But how can he ever hope to reinvent himself when Sebastian’s presence pulls him further into his past? Then again, maybe moving forward doesn’t have to mean leaving the best part of your past behind.
I liked a lot about this book. I loved that Sebastian wasn't this perfectly turned out hero and that he was Jonah's crush I thought the social media stuff was fun.
However, Jonah wasn't very self reflective until the very end and didn't get much of an arc (and he needed one).
It was a sweet fast read.
Spartanburg Spitfires’ goalie and captain, Isaac Drake, ended last season with an unexpected trip to the playoffs. He’s found a home and a family with his coach and mentor, Misha Samarin, and he’s looking forward to making a serious run for the Kelly Cup. But things take an interesting turn when Isaac’s archnemesis, Laurent St. Savoy, is traded to the Spitfires. After Laurent’s despicable behavior in the playoffs last year, Isaac wants nothing to do with him—no matter how gorgeous he is. But that changes when Isaac discovers the reason for Laurent’s attitude.
Laurent St. Savoy grew up the only son of a legendary NHL goalie in a household rife with abuse. He was constantly treated like a disappointment, on and off the ice. When a desperate attempt to escape his father’s tyranny sends him to the Spitfires, the last thing Laurent wants is to make friends. But there’s something about Isaac Drake that he can’t resist. Laurent has an opportunity to explore his sexuality for the first time, but he’s cracking under end-of-the-season pressures. When facing the playoffs and a rivalry turned personal vendetta, Isaac’s not sure he’s enough to hold on to Laurent—or their relationship.
This is by far the darkest book of the series so far but this love story really shows off what an amazing storyteller Avon Gale is.
She takes the villain from the last book in the series Laurents and pairs him with the beloved scrappy Drake in an truely stellar enemies to lovers romance with a healing journey for all.
This book delves into the darkness of what happens when someone is exposed to systematic abuse and what it means to love someone enough to stand by as they heal.
Laurents is awful for a reason. However, he chooses to become aware and change and risk loving someone. He gets therapy. I can't tell you how much I celebrate when a character gets professionial help in a book showing others the way. He works at his recovery from an eating disorder and self care from his abusive childhood and young adulthood.
His demisexuality is gently explored. He becomes his better self and a wonderful partner for Issac. I love the dating scenes.
Issac is so much a great emotionally brave character and sexy as hell (Lauren is broodingly hot). Issac just shines and finding romantic love and the love of an adopted father makes him even more compelling.
He falls in love but doesn't try to solve Laurents problems. He is a partner.
I really adored their romance as always the hockey and the secondary characters and the pondering for friendship.
The books ends with a happily ever after that includes doing the right things for yourself as well as others.
A freak accident during the Stanley Cup Playoffs put an end to Max Ashford’s hockey career. Despite everything, Max gets back into the game he loves—only this time, behind the bench as an assistant coach of the Spartanburg Spitfires, the worst team in the entire league. But nothing prepares him for the shock when he learns the new head coach is Misha Samarin, the man who caused Max’s accident.
After spending years guilt-ridden for his part in Max’s accident, Russian native Misha Samarin has no idea what to do when he’s confronted with Max’s presence. Max’s optimism plays havoc with Misha’s equilibrium—as does the fierce attraction that springs up between them.
Not only must they navigate Misha’s remorse and a past he’s spent a lifetime trying to forget, but also a sleazy GM who is determined to use their history as a marketing hook. But when an unwelcome visitor targets a player, Misha revisits his darkest days, and that might cost him and Max the beginning they’ve worked so hard to build.
So, I am loving Avon Gale. She is really pitch perfect in this series so far. We get fully realized characters, hockey, great love stories, and human complexity with no false drama. Sexy as hell as well.
I read the blurb to this book and I think. Hmmm. Its going to be angsty bleh but it is not. It is wonderful.
Misha and Max. Agghhh. Great opposites attract with Max as sunny hero and Misha as dour. They love each other so. And I want every joy for them.
Misha is grrrr sexy and tortured but he is also a grown ass man who handles his business and is emotionally available.
Mas is thoughtful and resilient. I want to go re read this finely writing romance right now.
A comfort read for years to come!