For Landon Stackhouse, being called up from the Calgary farm team is exciting and terrifying, even if, as the backup goalie, he rarely leaves the bench. A quiet loner by nature, Landon knows he gives off strong “don’t talk to me” vibes. The only player who doesn’t seem to notice is Calgary’s superstar young winger, Casey Hicks.
Casey treats Landon like an old friend, even though they’ve only interacted briefly in the past. He’s endlessly charming and completely laid-back in a way that Landon absolutely can’t relate to. They couldn’t have less in common, but Landon needs a place to live that’s not a hotel room and Casey has just bought a massive house—and hates being alone.
As roommates, Casey refuses to be defeated by Landon’s one-word answers. As friends, Landon comes to notice a few things about Casey, like his wide, easy smile and sparkling green-blue eyes. Spending the holidays together only intensifies their bromance-turned-romance. But as the new year approaches, the countdown to the end of Landon’s time in Calgary is on.
A hockey book, by Rachel Reid, without ILYA??? Gasp!
But a different team brings us new players, new characters, new chances at love. This time we are in Calgary with a farm team back up goalie temporarily replacing the regular back up goalie who was hurt. Landon is a VERY quiet guy. Like, painfully quiet. And then Casey, a temporary teammate he met once before, latches onto him like a koala bear. Casey is the COMPLETE opposite of Landon. Loud, friendly, never stops moving and hates to be alone.
What comes next is two guys, each with their own issues and trauma, who are completely opposite from each other, trying not to fall in love. Because once the back up goalie is healthy, Landon will be sent back down.
So Casey OBVIOUSLY has ADHD and I can’t believe it isn’t mentioned. Like at all. You’d think his friends and teammates would even joke about it, as friends and teammates are wont to do. I found that odd. Add in the actual joking he gets about being “stupid”, I wonder if anyone has actually paid attention.
Moving on. Landon’s trauma is so much deeper. A fractured family that he emotionally and physically distanced himself from after his sister died. He doesn’t have any close connections. Is that because he is so withdrawn and quiet or is he so withdrawn and quiet because he doesn’t have any close connections? He isn’t that guy who obviously has walls up, if that makes sense. He is just pretty much accepted for being a quiet loner. Casey doesn’t accept it though.
I love how settled down Casey gets with Landon. Like he is his own personal Ritalin. He is so tender and sweet and loving with Landon. And while it takes Landon a bit to open up enough, it’s so worth it.
Landon and his family begin to heal as well. Parents admitting they were wrong, how novel. But so amazing.
So yes, another winner here from Rachel Reid. I can’t wait for more.
4.5 pieces of eye candy