Stacey is Sassy received a complimentary copy of this story. The copy provided was not the final version and may be subject to edits and changes
Published by Rennie Road Books on January 3, 2017
Genres: Sports Romance
From the USA Today bestselling author of Rookie Move comes the second novel in the series that’s hot enough to melt the ice.
He’s a fighter in the rink, but he’s about to learn that playing nice can help you score...
As team captain and enforcer, Patrick O'Doul puts the bruise in the Brooklyn Bruisers. But after years of hard hits, O'Doul is feeling the burn, both physically and mentally. He conceals his pain from his coach and trainers, but when his chronic hip injury becomes too obvious to ignore, they send him for sessions with the team’s massage therapist. After breaking up with her long-term boyfriend, Ari Bettini is in need of peace of mind. For now, she’s decided to focus on her work: rehabilitating the Bruisers’ MVP. O'Doul is easy on the eyes, but his reaction to her touch is ice cold. Ari is determined to help O'Doul heal, but as the tension between them turns red hot, they both learn that a little TLC does the body good...
From the Paperback edition.
Hard Hitter (Brooklyn Bruisers #2)
By Sarina Bowen
So sweet considering it’s full of hard hitters and bruisers…
Isn’t it funny that when the gloves are on for a boxer it means the fights on, but when the gloves come off in ice hockey, the fights on? You learn something new every day…
If anyone was to tell me a few years back that I would learn to love sports romance I would have laughed in their faces. I’m loving sports romance, especially ones with ice hockey in them. It could be the buff bodies, charisma and fierce determination of the players that changed my opinion or maybe it was just the authors’ skills. Sarina Bowen writes heroes that appeal to my heart, mind and…Ummm, no it’s definitely not my soul making me blush.
The Brooklyn Bruisers series is really great. There’s just something about this team that makes them different from others. The leadership is led by Nate, a tech guru with a love for ice hockey. He owns the Brooklyn Bruisers but doesn’t just sit back leaving it to be controlled by his staff. He studies his players, plots and plans for success. He’s a little nerdy but I really like him. Under Nate, we have managers, coaches, trainers, therapists and a whole host of other workers. They’re a good team and it’s great to see them have each other’s back.
Patrick, the captain and enforcer of the Brooklyn Bruisers, has been struggling with his role in the team. He’s not getting any younger and as the enforcer, his body is not bouncing back from the fights as well as it used to. Bits and pieces of his body are starting to show wear and tear but he thinks (hopes) it will get better. Eventually, the trainers force him to take a break and head to get a few massages. There’s a wee problem, though…Patrick doesn’t like to be touched.
Ariana is the team masseuse and yoga instructor. She believes that a clear mind and a strong body can make the players better. Luckily, she has the full support of Nate, especially considering he’s a fan of yoga. One of the players is avoiding her and she’s not sure why. The first session Patrick attends is far from relaxing as he is tense and doesn’t let his guard down. Ari is going to have to work to gain his trust.
With time Patrick does start to trust Ari and even likes her. When he finds out that her ex is giving her grief his protecting instincts kick in and he goes out of his way to keep an eye on her. Unfortunately, Ari’s ex, Vince knows a secret about Patrick that could end his career.
Ariana regrets the years she had dedicated to her ex. Vince is mixed up with some bad people and it looks like he’s involved Ari with his problems. Ariana hates that her private life has invaded her work life. They know of her issues with Vince and hire security to keep an eye on her. Considering the strong feelings developing between Ari and Patrick, he takes it upon himself to protect her as well.
The attraction between Patrick and Ari is sizzling. He is extremely strong and she’s extremely flexible…hubba hubba. Ari tries to push him away but when he’s in touching distance she finds it hard…very hard. Before Ari, Patrick has not had a relationship. The feelings she brings out in him are foreign but welcome. He will do anything to make her happy.
I really enjoyed Hard Hitter. Patrick shows a vulnerable side when he puts his heart on the line knowing that Ari isn’t ready for a serious relationship. Ariana is struggling with shame for living with a man who ended up hurting her. She’s scared to start a new relationship but with Patrick being so sweet and tempting she just can’t help herself. I loved their love story.
I’m addicted to this series and I can’t wait to find out who’s up next. I really want to know more about Nate, Becca, Castro, Lauren and Beacon. They all need their own stories Ms Bowen…pretty please with sugar on the top.