By Veronica Forand & Susan Scott Shelley
When the gloves come off, she’s worth the penalty…
Physical therapist Annie Davidson is great at her job but unlucky when it comes to love. She’s just out of a bad relationship. A really bad relationship. All she can do is focus on work…that is until she runs into professional hockey player Alec O’Meara. She’s a touch insecure and doesn’t understand why he’s interested in her.
Despite being one of the biggest players on the team, right wing Alec O’Meara prefers finesse over force. After the tragic death of his wife, he likes to keep things loose on and off the ice. But the red-headed Annie challenges his beliefs and makes him think about taking their relationship to the net.
The passion and fun they share is addicting and makes them long for more. But her insecurities that she’s not good enough, and his anxiety over a long-term commitment will keep them apart, unless they can find a way to break through the defenses they’ve built around their hearts.
So I’m going to be honest and say that I was very sick when I read SIMMERING ICE, which could be why I didn’t like it as much as a thought I would, or as much as I remember liking FLIRTING ON ICE. This is a novella, so it’s a fairly quick read and it moves at a quick pace, but I felt that sometimes it moved too quickly and that some scenes could have been fleshed out a little more. I also found that the mid-chapter breaks were hard to identify, which would confuse me until I realised that we’d apparently changed scenes and skipped a couple of days.
I liked the friendship and loyalty the players had with each other, both on and off the ice. When they knew something was bothering Alec, they turned up and refused to leave until they helped him come up with a solution. I did like Alec and I thought he was a nice guy, but I didn’t connect with him on an emotional level. Here’s a guy whose wife died a couple of years ago, yet I felt nothing for him, felt no sadness for his loss. I liked Annie as well but she did lack a lot of confidence. But given her ex cheated on and left her and her mother was always saying negative things about her life and appearance, a lack of confidence doesn’t really surprise me. Her interactions with her mother made me wish I could have reached into my Kindle, pulled her mother out by her hair and bitch slap her. And that right there is the only emotion I can remember having while reading this book: anger at Annie’s mother. I would have loved Annie had she stood up to her mother.
SIMMERING ICE is told in dual POVs and while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a standalone.