I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Second Shot With #76 by Piper Rayne
Published by Independently Published on 256
Genres: Contemporary, Fiction, Romance, Second Chance Romance, Sports Romance
Format: ARC, eBook, Paperback
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My mom always said you don’t get a second shot at making a first impression. I’ve remembered that my entire career. Especially since I’m one of the few black men who play professional hockey.
I’m calculated and respectful in the way I speak to my coaches, the owners, and the media. I’ve never taken a risk… until her.
I could blame it on the fact that for once I pushed away the pressure of my career for the ocean waves, the sand, and good times with my new teammates. But those are excuses because the minute I saw her at the airport, something lit up inside me and the best week of my life was spent with her in my bed.
After our week in paradise, we said goodbye, exchanged phone numbers and both assumed that unless one of us was flying through the other’s city on the opposite side of the country, our vacation fling was over.
Then one night after practice I see her. She’s here. In my city. Telling me she moved here for a job. If that’s not fate tell me what is.
I’ve never wanted a second shot more than I do this time, but she’s determined to leave what we were on the island we left behind.
Second Shot With #76 held my interest, I just not a fan of angst and game playing so the romance part of this book didn’t do it for me. ~ Sharon – Simply Love Books
I loved the last book in this series, seriously loved it, but unfortunately I did not feel the same way about Second Shot With #76. Being that this couple had a past, a vacation fling in Tropical Hat Trick, I was all in for a good second chance romance and instead it became a huge angst fest filled with dishonesty and game playing leaving me disappointed in the romance aspect of this book. That being said, there were other aspects of this book I truly loved which saved it from being a complete shut out.
In Tropical Hat Trick, Cory is a rookie on the Florida Fury hockey team who has a weeklong vacation fling with Ande while in the tropics with the team. They had so much chemistry it oozed off the page. He tried to contact her again, but she ignored him still nursing a broken heart from a bad break-up. Listening to another teammate, Cory decides that taking advantage of what the puck bunnies have to offer is a good thing, after all he’s young, single, a pro hockey player and obvious Ande didn’t feel the same connection he did. So when they run into each other again in Florida where she’s relocated from Utah, he feels like this is a new start until she introduces him to her fiancé. However, the Team WAGS who spend time with her on vacation keep inviting her and her significant other to events, Cory supplies them with hockey tickets, and he soon realizes something isn’t quite right between Ande and Trevor.
I’ll be clear, I wanted Cory and Ande together; I loved them in Tropical Hat Trick and you could just tell they were meant to be and while I can’t fault Cory for going overboard on women he wasn’t even a little bit discrete which upset his parents to no end and made a big difference in the way Ande felt about him when they saw each other again. I’m not saying that’s fair or right or wrong, but because he knew Ande’s baggage it became a bigger deal especially when she’s confronted with one of his hook-ups face to face.
As much as I loved these two before, I had a hard time liking and connecting with them both in this book and that made it difficult to love this book. Cory had an attitude that we hadn’t seen before and like I said I get it, I really do and he had every right to hook up with whoever he wanted, but the fact he didn’t really understand how hard that was on Ande showed he really didn’t understand women very much. I think Cory is a good person and it was easy to see how much he still liked Ande and wanted to pursue something with her, but he missed so many signals that something wasn’t right and he ignored them. As much as Cory disappointed me, Ande made me angry. I get that she was hurt, I understand the anger she felt, but instead of confronting the issue and asking for an explanation, instead of taking the word of someone who hasn’t been very trustworthy in the past, she decided to play relationship games and for a good portion of this book I hated her for her behavior.
I did enjoy watching Cory and Ande reconnecting, building on what they had in the past, and becoming closer and while Ande had good intentions of coming clean with Cory she left it too long. While Cory really didn’t do anything wrong and his attitude was a bit off (IMHO) about it, Ande did major damage and was lucky Cory had good people to help him see the big picture.
The bright spot in this book was the camaraderie of Cory and his teammates and the mentorship by Kane toward Cory that helped him see things in a different way. I absolutely adored the way their relationship grew during this book and I cannot wait to see what happens in the future with these players and their team. As always, I love seeing the couples from the previous books and catching up on what is going on in their lives as well.
While I didn’t love this book, I would not have wanted to miss it as there were many surprising moments. It held my interest, I just not a fan of angst and game playing so the romance part of this book didn’t do it for me. That being said, I am stoked about what’s to come in this series and I cannot wait for the next book!
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