Series: Bad Motherpuckers #2
Published by Self Published on May 22, 2017
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Contemporary, Romantic Comedy, Sports Romance
When the family dog trots in with my diaphragm in its mouth—in front of my date, his parents, and his adorable little girl—you would think I’d hit rock bottom.
Let’s back this up a sec…
Brendan Daniels is the sexiest man alive. The captain of the Badger’s NHL team is also clever, kind, funny, and was my good friend…until we cruised out of the friend zone one weekend with a red-hot fling. Come Monday morning, I wanted to keep riding the Big O train to happy town, but Brendan wanted someone who was “stepmom” material.
A.K.A, not me, apparently.
The problem? I’m crazy in love with him and his daughter. So when he asks me to be his pretend girlfriend for a long weekend with his former in-laws, I say yes. We’re still friends, after all, and friends don’t let friends fake it alone.
Laura Collins is the last woman I should be thinking about taking in the back seat of my car, in the woods behind my in-laws’ house, or in a hotel room where we’re sharing one very small, very squeaky bed.
I need a steady, stable influence for my daughter, not a fling with this too wild, too young, too impulsive red head. So what if she’s beautiful and intense and passionate and has the biggest heart I’ve ever known?
I don’t want to fall in love. I really don’t. The whole “pretend girlfriend” thing was supposed to solve my problems, buy me a little more time.
But when it comes to Laura?
Hell, maybe I’m just not cut out for faking it.
Lili Valente has quickly become one of my favorite hockey romance authors, right up there with the likes of Helena Hunting, Sarina Bowen and Sawyer Bennett. And let me tell, you that is high praise. I’ve read my fair share of hockey books but very few hit that “just right” spot.
I read Hot as Puck, book 1 in the Bad Motherpuckers series and absolutely loved it. This book is the follow-up to that brilliant first entry and it features Laura, the PR director of the Portland Badgers pro hockey team and Libby’s big sister. Libby is the lovable school teacher heroine in the first book who winds up in a relationship with her and Laura’s childhood best friend, Justin, who actually plays for the team. I love the relationship between these two sisters. They are really close and really fun. I especially love their chats which are prominently featured in both books.
Brendan, the hero of this book, is the captain of the team – a single father and widower that is suffering under the weight of his loneliness and guilt over losing his wife. He’s also struggling as a single parent and facing the possibility of losing his 7 year old daughter Chloe if he doesn’t find a girlfriend to at least pretend to have a real relationship with for the sake of appeasing his former in-laws.
If there is something I´m quickly learning about this author is her knack for creating extremely likable characters. Both Laura and Brendan were insanely lovable people, both suffering from commitment phobia but willing to eventually take that leap (both figuratively and literally) with each other. I’m also realizing how witty and good at dialogue Lili Valente is. Her prose is always peppered with lively interaction and fun characterizations.
This book is mostly a character study. It’s about both parties getting over their inner demons and finding the path to true love, even after heartbreak. I have to say I found the epilogue insanely adorable and it features a proposal that is so sweet and unique, it’s something I’ve actually never seen in a book before. I’m not going to say what is proposed or who is doing the proposing, as that would be spoiling the heck out of one of the best parts of the book.
I honestly am hard pressed to find one bad thing to say about this book. If you like flirty, sweet and fun sports romances, this should do the trick. And although this book has a couple of tropes I’m normally not crazy about, like the single-father, widower hero and a kid being featured front and center, none of that detracted from my enjoyment. It was a quick, easy read that I highly recommend.
An ARC was received in exchange for an honest review.