By Sawyer Bennett
Marek Fabritis is used to delivering blows, not receiving them. But when he gets tipped off by an anonymous email about his ex-girlfriend, the news leaves him ice cold—and it’s not because Gracen Moore is getting married to a total jerk. It’s the fact that Marek has a three-year-old daughter he never knew about. Now he’s going back home, not to play knight in shining armor but to make damn sure that no man takes what’s his. For the first time, there might be something more important than hockey.
Gracen Moore has always loved Marek. That’s why she let him go, so he could pursue a career in the NHL. And that’s why she never told him about Lilly. Only now does Gracen realize that she made an unforgivable mistake. But is that any reason for Marek to crash her wedding and make an epic scene? If the spark that still smolders between them is to be trusted, maybe. Still, Gracen’s not getting her hopes up. Because she knows better than anyone that appearances aren’t always what they seem. . . .
MAREK is a second chance, secret child romance, which for the most part was a very enjoyable read and a good addition to the Cold Fury Hockey series. The story was entertaining, kept me turning the pages and brought out a wide range of emotions from me.
I loved Gracen, who apologized several times for keeping her daughter a secret and she meant each and every one of those apologies. She was willing to accept Marek’s anger towards her, but she was not afraid to stand up for herself and put him in his place when he went too far. Given how their breakup went down, I don’t blame Gracen one bit for what she did, especially when she believed she was simply honoring Marek’s wishes.
I also loved her daughter, Lilly, who was a gorgeous and sweet little girl.
I wish I could say I liked Marek, but I just can’t. While he became a good father to Lilly, I didn’t like how he kept playing the victim or how badly he treated Gracen throughout most of the book. From memory, he never apologized to Gracen for the cruel way he broke up with her, or take into account her feelings or try to understand why she kept Lilly a secret.
While MAREK can technically be read as a stand-alone, the scene where Marek rushes to stop Gracen from getting married⏤and learns about his daughter⏤only appears in the previous book. So if you haven’t read REED, you will miss that particular heated and emotional scene that sets up this story.
I also have to say that the synopsis does not match the story at all, and it’s been a long time since I’ve seen such a glaring disparity between the two. The synopsis says that Gracen let Marek go so he could pursue his NHL dreams, and that Marek rushes to stop her from getting married after learning he has a daughter. That is not even close to what happened. Instead, Marek dumped Gracen when he reached the NHL because he didn’t want to be tied down to her, and only learned of his daughter after he turned up to stop Gracen from getting married.
There’s not a great deal of hockey in this book, as the story mostly takes place during the off-season. But despite that, and as I said above, the story is a page turner and I devoured it quickly. MAREK is told in dual POVs and comes with a HEA for Marek and Gracen.
Marek (Cold Fury Hockey # 11)
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