Series: Cold Fury Hockey,
Published by Random House Publishing Group on February 17th 2015
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Sports, Contemporary Women, Erotica
Buy on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks
New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett hits the ice with this stand-alone story of a playboy athlete whose winning ways lead him to a beautiful woman with a lot to lose.
Carolina Cold Fury star Garrett Samuelson never wants to miss out on a single minute of fun. Whether he’s playing hockey, hanging out with friends, or walking the red carpet with a new date on his arm, he lives every day to the fullest. When he meets Olivia Case, he sees someone who’s exactly his type—confident, sexy, smart . . . his next fling. But the more he pursues her, the more Garrett shares a side of himself that other women don’t normally get to see.
Olivia has been keeping a secret. While Garrett lives for the next thrill, Olivia’s not sure she’ll live to see the next day. She’s undergoing treatment for some serious medical issues, and she doesn’t have time for a relationship with no guarantees—especially one with a hot-as-sin womanizer who won’t take no for an answer. But as she gets to know the real Garrett, Olivia can’t help falling for him . . . hard. To reveal the truth would mean risking everything—but you can’t score without taking the tough shots.
Sawyer Bennett returned to her Cold Fury Hockey series by bringing fans the next installment, Garrett. Garrett Samuelson was introduce in book 1, Alex, as Alex Crossman’s new best friend and teammate. While Alex didn’t mind picking up chicks to blow off a little steam before he met and fell for Sutton, Alex’s game was nothing like Garrett’s. Garrett, deemed a man whore by teammates and fans alike, rarely goes home alone or “date” the same woman more than once. Then he meets Sutton’s cousin, Olivia. Olivia is gorgeous, funny, and everything Garrett could possible want. Except she is secretly battling a serious disease. This seems like a good plot for a romance. Two people destined to be together despite the odds, and it was.
I really liked Garrett when I read Alex, and he doesn’t disappoint in his own book. In fact, I think I’ve fallen in love with him a bit myself. Garrett is hot, but he’s sweet, funny, and knows how to have a good time. The polar opposite to Alex. With the heavy subject matter this book dealt with, it was nice to have the light banter to balance out the story and keep it hopeful instead of depressing. I also really liked Olivia. She was very likable, and made me want to root for her to win Garrett’s heart, and beat her illness.
Another aspect I liked about this book was how Alex and Sutton weren’t forgotten like I feared they would be. They were very much present. Teammate Zach and his girlfriend Gina also were in this book, which is a good thing since Zach is the main character in the third book. Zach and Gina’s inclusion helped bridge the stories from books 1 and 3, and helped improve the world-building. We also meet a fourth teammate who was traded to another team,and returned to North Carolina for a tragic event. I first thought he’d be the lead in book 4, but it looks like he won’t be. Hopefully, the character will return so that the Cold Fury really feels like a team.
Something went down between Garrett and Olivia that was too similar to the other book. I won’t go into it too much, because I don’t want to spoil, but I felt that what happened made their relationship feel redundant. I wish that Olivia had behaved a little differently in that situation, even if conflict still arose, just to make the story feel fresher. Having said that, I really loved the epilogue! I just hope that if Bennett keeps the series going she doesn’t realize she’s painted herself into a corner by writing it.
Another aspect of the story I didn’t really care for was Olivia’s best friend/boss , Stevie. As much as I appreciate Sawyer Bennett including some diversity by writing a gay character, I kind of felt as if Stevie was a caricature. Sure, there are flamboyantly gay men, but something about the way he spoke seemed a bit over-the-top. It also didn’t help that at the end of the book we learn he performs in drag shows. I may have been alright with this info had that tidbit been included in the beginning of the story, and not thrown in at the end.
Do I Recommend?
I actually think I liked Garrett more than I liked Alex. I preferred reading Garrett’s point of view, as he’s more fun-loving than Alex was in book 1. Then again, Alex’s story felt more original as it was the first in the series. Too close to call. Doesn’t matter, though, because both books were really great. I will admit that I think Olivia and Sutton are practically interchangeable, but that didn’t really bother me too much. I continue to love the hockey scenes, and wish there was more of that in this book like there was in book 1. Overall, a very fast read that had me up until 3:30 A.M. hooked like a fiend. If my iPad hadn’t died, I probably would have never gone to sleep 😉