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Monday, March 20, 2017

Hot on Ice: A Hockey Romance Anthology Review

Hot on Ice: A Hockey Romance Anthology (Chicago Rebels, #.5; Station Seventeen, #1.5)Hot on Ice: A Hockey Romance Anthology by Avery Flynn, Robin Covington, Kimberly Kincaid, Nana Malone, Virginia Nelson, Xio Axelrod, Christi Barth, Andie J. Christopher, Kim Golden, Lena Hart, Desiree Holt, Robin Kaye, Katie Kenyhercz, Heather Long, Kate Meader, Angi Morgan, Susan Scott Shelley, Misty D. Waters
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am a hockey romance addict, so when I saw this anthology I had to have it. I have read a lot of anthologies, what I liked the most about this one is that it had a common theme. Each novella was about a different NHL player on the recent Stanley Cup Championship team the New Orleans Cajun Rage. The stories were about the individual player’s day with the Cup and a legend about them finding their true love on their day. I love how all the books were clearly coordinated. Players were mentioned in each other’s books, and Edwin Motz, the Keeper of the Cup, made an appearance in the stories. Even though each tale had a common theme, every story was amazingly different, enjoyable, and exciting. I like that some of the authors tied their books to existing series. I love that 20% of the royalties earned goes to the Homes For Our Troops charity, a nonprofit organization that builds mortgage-free, specially modified homes for severely injured veterans.

HOT ON ICE consists of eighteen stories:

DEEP CHECK (Station Seventeen #1.5) by Kimberly Kincaid. After a fight, hockey Center, Finnegan Donnelly couldn’t leave his hometown of Remington and his two best friends behind fast enough. Seven years later, he finds himself taking the Cup home to visit his ex-best friend Asher’s grave. While there he is reunited with January Sinclair, the other person, he left behind. DEEP CHECK is a sweet second chance hockey/firefighter romance.

BEAR NAKED by Katie Kenyhercz. After nine years, NHL Defensman, Bear Thompson, returns home to Bear Mountain Reserve in Canada. He wants to get permission to allow a television crew and outsiders onto the reserve for his day with the Cup in hopes of giving his people some good publicity. However, he needs to convince the Chief/his ex-girlfriend, Aria Paul, that it is in the Mi’Kmaq’s best interest. BEAR NAKED is a charming second chance romance. I loved the cultural aspects of this story.

BODY CHECK by Desiree Holt. NHL Defenseman, Matt Vorchak, is coping with a career-ending injury. He returns home to San Antonio for his day with the Cup, to do some apologizing, and soul searching. He seeks out Lizzie St. John, the girl he walked away from. BODY CHECK is a thought-provoking second chance romance.

BREAKAWAY BROOKE by Angi Morgan. Left winger, Deacon “Tripp” Sanders heads to McKinney, TX for his day with the Cup. Coming from a prestigious family, his life has been threatened. Unbeknownst to him, his family hires bodyguard, Brooke Henderson, to keep an eye on him. BREAKAWAY BROOKE has a bit of a supernatural feel. It is full of action and twists.

UNDER THE MIDNIGHT SUN by Kim Golden. NHL Center, Jonas Magnusson, is recovering from a concussion. He goes home to Stockholm for his day with the Cup; while there he is reunited Mariam Kidane.

IN SKATES TROUBLE (Chicago Rebels, #0.5) by Kate Meader. NHL right winger star, Ford Callaghan, takes the Cup home to Chicago; while there he meets the woman of his dreams, Addison Williams. Unfortunately, she is also the ex-wife of his team’s owner. I adored this story. I will definitely be following the new Chicago Rebels series.

CHECKING YES by Misty D. Waters. Left winger, Cooper Banks, left Dove Harbor, Georgia, after discovering a secret, leaving behind Savannah Jane Scott, the love of his life. Three years later, he returns home for his day with the Cup. CHECKING YES is a delightful second chance romance with many exciting twists.

PENALTY BOX BLUES (a Wild Thing novella) by Robin Kaye. Defenseman, Stryker Gyllenhal, pays off a debt to a friend by taking the Cup back home to Boise, Idaho; while there he is assigned a handler, his ex-tutor and childhood friend, Trish Reynolds. However, he doesn’t recognize her now that she is no longer hiding behind frumpy clothes. PENALTY BOX BLUES is a heartfelt read with a lot of insight and thought-provoking content. This was an adorable story that made me want to check out the Wild Thing Series.

FREE AGENT by Robin Covington. Jamie “DC” Washington has had an eventful year; he just won the Stanley Cup; he is a free agent, and he announced at a press conference that he was gay. While heading to Washington DC, for his day with the Cup, he bumps into his PT Etienne, whom he has been lusting after.

BLADE (B-Squad #2.5) by Avery Flynn. Goaltender, Flynn Kazakov spends his day with the Cup in Snow Bay, The Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Thief, Gillie Pike, tries to warn him that someone is attempting to frame him. BLADE is full of action and twists.

MAKING HIS MOVE by Susan Scott Shelley. Backup Goalie, Rod Fraser heads to New York. He bumps into his sister Kelsey’s best friend, Arielle Charton, who he has had a crush on. He tries to convince her to go on a date with him.

CHECK MY HEART by Christi Barth. Center, Kurt Lundquist, dying little brother Jasper, request that he win the Cup. Ten months later, he won the Cup but Jasper wasn’t around to see it. Kurt runs into Jasper’ nurse Lissette, whom his is attracted to but feels is off limits.

BLOCKED by Heather Long. Bad-boy right winger, Archer Durham needs to clean up his reputation. He becomes involved with pop star Hoshi Sato.

FULL CONTACT by Andie J. Christopher. Left winger, Anders Sorenson goes to Thunderbay Cove in Northern Minnesota. His teammates put a $150,000 bounty on his virginity.

COURAGE by Lena Hart. Coach Mason “The Rage” Courage fights to keep his marriage.

RANSOM by Nana Malone. Right Wing, Ransom Cox is stranded in a cabin in Hope, NY, with his high school crush, Lexa Carlisle. RANSOM is a fun romance.

CAGED by Virginia Nelson. Right Winger, Oliver “Ollie” Tremblay felt obligated to spend his day with the Cup in his hometown. Having bad memories, he left the town as soon as he could. He is reunited with his childhood crush, Maisie Miller. I like how the story flashed back and forth between the past and present.

THE WARM UP by Xio Axelrod. Defenseman, Constantine Zimin just won the Cup, but it is bittersweet because he has no one to celebrate it with. His twin sister died ten years ago; his parents couldn’t make it, and his best friend / teammate Jonas was in the hospital with a concussion. He heads home to Philly where he meets nurse, Sujarta Meriwether.

HOT ON ICE is an amazing read. Fourteen of the authors were new to me. The authors I was familiar with were: Katie Kenyhercz, Susan Scott Shelley, Desiree Holt, and Heather Long. I highly recommend this anthology to anyone that enjoys sports romances. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book.

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