Buy it on AMAZON. ARC provided by Montlake Romance via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ STARS
First off, let me just start by saying I LOVE SPORTS ROMANCES. Even the horrendously bad ones will keep my attention and most likely leave me in a fit of gleeful giggles. This was not a horrible book. Not by any stretch of the imagination! It was fun, flirty and had that perfect Bridget-Jones’ level of awkwardness. If you’re after a quick and adorable HEA read with a nerdy, shy-as-all-get-out gal and hunky, considerate, athletic guy then you’re in the right place!
Helena Hunting delivers a steamy and super sweet romance AGAIN and if you’re a fan of her previous work, you won’t be disappointed with this!
First off, let me just recap my bias: Sports romances are like crack to me. I once went through a phase of reading about a hundred or so (check my Goodreads if you don’t believe me) so I think I can say I’m a good judge of quality for this genre.
Besides, Nen and I take sports SERIOUSLY. Ain’t nobody (seriously… nobody) going to get between me and my favourite team. The Penguins are for life and that’s that. If you don’t know who they are (be ashamed…. I’m joking. Mostly.) you should probably look them up. I just did you a favour. What I’m really trying to say is that this wasn’t some mere sports romance. It was HOCKEY ROMANCE. Practically gold in my eyes and never rated less than a 2 star!
I digress… back on to the review!
When RJ’s (Rookie) season ends, he decides to take some time away from the limelight of being an NHL team captain to escape to the Alaskan coast in an effort to rekindle the lost tradition set by his father. Along the way he meets Lainey. Incredibly intelligent, beautiful and just a TEENSY bit awkward. What starts out as a sweet summer fling to keep them entertained in the quiet, stunningly beautiful background of Alaska soon becomes something more. When a family emergency forces RJ to leave Alaska early he has no choice but to go. Except… he forgot Lainey’s number and has no way to contact her.
Pining for his lost chance at the perfect fling and someone who could have been a whole lot MORE, RJ is shocked to run in to Lainey a year later. Except nothing’s that simple. Caught in a tangle of white lies Lainey and RJ’s secrets might just be the ultimate game-changer!
This story caught my attention immediately and held it throughout the book. I managed to finish ALFAL in one sitting and was reduced to a romantic fangirl by the end of the book! The story was well paced and the dialogue was hilarious. Honestly, Lainey’s AWKWARD dialogue kept me laughing and engaged the whole way through.
While this was an enjoyable read it was by no means original or unpredictable. There were a few moments that REALLY caught me by surprise and improved my opinion of the book but this wasn’t a new take on the genre. If anything, I would say this was the perfect read for someone expecting the cliches and cut and dry summer fling romance story line. Not to say that it’s not worth reading though! Just… what the premise reads is what you get.
The characters were your quintessential opposites attract and I loved that! They weren’t overly original or really even all that memorable but what really sold this book for me were the tropes. Without giving much away, let me just say that this has a great selection of my ALL TIME FAV tropes in it and if they’re yours too then you’ll be leaving this book smiling!
I’ve rated this four stars because I GENUINELY LOVED it and found myself smiling/laughing/giggling/ranting all of the way through. I was engaged. I was happy. This is feel good and it’s great! If you want me to be critical and rate it as if I didn’t love all of these tropes, HOCKEY ROMANCES and blah characters then I’d rate it maybe a 2 1/2 stars. So… bear that in mind I suppose.
But really… when I go in to a sports romance I’m after certain tropes and character dynamics (I’m not looking to remake the wheel). This book perfectly displayed those and was a joy to read!
// what’s your fav Helena Hunting book? are you as mad for sports romances as I am? //