The sequel is finally here! Shane and Ilya’s story, first seen in Heated Rivalry, continues in this long-awaited hockey romance from Rachel Reid.
“Everything you could want from this magnetic couple! A passionate, sexy, emotional sequel that grips your heart! Shane and Ilya forever!” —#1 NYT Bestseller Lauren Blakely, author of Hopelessly Bromantic
To the world they are rivals, but to each other they are everything.
That’s how long Shane Hollander and Ilya Rozanov have been seeing each other. How long they’ve been keeping their relationship a secret. From friends, from family…from the league. If Shane wants to stay at the top of his game, what he and Ilya share has to remain secret. He loves Ilya, but what if going public ruins everything?
Ilya is sick of secrets. Shane has gotten so good at hiding his feelings, sometimes Ilya questions if they even exist. The closeness, the intimacy, even the risk that would come with being open about their relationship…Ilya wants it all.
It’s time for them to decide what’s most important—hockey or love.
It’s time to make a call.
Book 1: Game Changer
Book 2: Heated Rivalry
Book 3: Tough Guy
Book 4: Common Goal
Book 5: Role Model
Book 6: The Long Game
Who has been waiting since the end of book 2 to see Shane and Ilya’s happily ever after? We fell in love with these guys in Heated Rivalry and then got glimpses of them for the next 3 books, just whetting our appetites. And this is our payoff.
Something I really loved was the overlap between this book and the one just prior, Role Model. It was fun realizing that book 6 was happening while book 5 was happening. Well, book 5 would have ended about halfway through book 6. But still. Nicely done.
Ilya is still Ilya, but in this book he is vulnerable. Like with a capital V. He is hiding from everyone- especially Shane- that depression has creeped in. Even though he is terrified of ending up like his mother, he also doesn’t believe he would end up like his mother. And wow, the portrayal of his depression and how he goes about hiding it and faking it are so SO spot on. It broke my heart.
Their differing personalities are so evident in this installment. Ilya, the tough guy, the jokester who lets everything roll off his back because his ego is the size of Canada is just done. He wants his happily every after. He wants to tell the world how much he loves Shane. He has the confidence to say “if you don’t like it too bad”. But Shane isn’t there. He just wants to play hockey and win more Cups and not be the poster boy for being an out hockey player. Obviously there are others, but that only means he has seen the scrutiny on them since they came out. He is willing to tough out their original plan of waiting. Ilya isn’t happy with that, but he is also quiet about it.
Their journey includes fights and disagreements and dipping their toes in safe waters of hanging out as a couple when it is safe and of course hockey and a commissioner who gives Shane some veiled threats. And then Shane and Ilya some not so veiled threats.
But they do get their happily ever after and I kind of loved it. A lot. And while their story is, by romance book standards, complete, I would love more. Even as background characters supporting new main characters. I want to see them playing hockey as out players. I want to see them become dads.
I’m not ready to let them go.
4.5 pieces of eye candy