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The story starts nine years earlier when at age nineteen, Ben Kelly, had a one-night stand with the woman of his dreams. Ever since he has regretted not getting her phone number and last name. Now an NHL Goalie, he goes to the ski town of Cascade, BC, to recuperate from a potential career ending knee injury. While there he is reunited with the woman he let get away but doen’t recognize her right away because she no longer has blue hair and is hostile to him. Hailey Eriksson was left pregnant after their one-night stand and couldn’t get through Ben’s team’s office to let him know of the pregnancy or later when her son, Zack became terminally ill. Because of this she had to put off her dream at a chance to make the Canadian Women’s Olympian Hockey Team. Before his death, Hailey promised Zack she would make the 2014 Olympic Team in Sochi. This is a timely story with the Olympics starting this week but it doesn’t take place at the Olympics except at the very end. Ben and Hailey’s story is a lesson in regrets, secrets, living with loss, and second chances and is a realistic and well developed story. Crista McHugh did a wonderful job in developing two very sympathetic characters with very real situations. This is one of those books, where you say “I’m going to finish this chapter and then I’ll go to bed.” I just couldn’t do it and ended the book at 2 AM. ***I received a copy from NetGalley for an honest review.***
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3.5 Stars So when I read the synopsis, I thought I was getting a hockey book and a romance...what I feel I got was a drama, with a side of romance and there is some hockey happening. I very much enjoyed how the story opened...straight in to a steamy scene, that sets the tone for the instant chemistry between Hailey and Ben. I even enjoyed the chance encounter 9 years later, after Ben's knee injury. Where the story started to loose me, was the whole Zach storyline. There was no need to throw that in...I just didn't feel that it enhanced the story. I also felt that every time Hailey's character channeled her righteous anger, it was misdirected. She said several times that she couldn't trust him because he left her alone and pregnant. Did we all read the same story???? She left the hotel room while he was sleeping and left no phone number or last name. How was he supposed to find her and why would he assume she got pregnant? He didn't LEAVE her...she left him and an unfortunate situation developed. I also understand her frustration at receiving the letter...but again, if you have something that big to tell someone, did she ever think to hire a lawyer, bet she would've gotten through to him then. That part just really didn't sit right with me. However, I did enjoy Ben and wish there had been more of him and his journey and less of crazy Hailey. In the end, I feel the story worked out, though with some unrealistic bumps along the way. I would've liked more romance and hockey and less sad drama. I will say that the next story in the series sounds amusing and fun and look forward to reading it.
I received this title from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
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Ben Kelly has never forgotten the woman he spent one night with before he was famous. Sure, her blue hair was pretty unforgettable, but so was everything else about her. Unfortunately, he can’t go back in time and ask for her phone number before falling asleep, before waking up and finding her gone. But when he spots her playing hockey in Cascade, he’s hell bent on getting a second chance. If only she didn’t hate him on sight.
Hailey Eriksson hasn’t forgotten about Ben, either, but not just because the had one amazing night together. Despite using protection, she had returned home pregnant, and though she’d tried to reach out to him over the years, her letters had gotten her nowhere. Not even when she wrote to tell him their son was dying. And now he’s here, a year too late to meet the boy who changed her life but just in time to turn everything upside down.
But... There were a few places in the story where things wrapped up just a little too easily. I mean, I’m glad there wasn’t prolonged angst — it wouldn’t have fit with the overall mood. But even though I know it’s fiction, I expected the conflict to be more… well, more of a conflict than an almost instant resolution.
Take the moment Ben found out about his late son, or rather what prevented him from ever knowing about Zach. Surely anger would have been an appropriate reaction. Instead, there was just a strange resignation. He was more upset when he realized the truth about Zach than when he faced the true reason he’d been left in the dark for so long. And at the end, when everything was finally worked out… Is a heartfelt apology really all it takes to resolve emotions to the point that happily ever after is just guaranteed? I’m not so sure.
Breakaway Hearts by Crista McHugh is the 2nd book in her The Kelley Brothers series. I loved the first book in this series, and after reading this book, there is no way I will not read each book. These stories are scorching hot with a beautiful romance, great couple, fun storyline and just simply awesome.
Breakaway Hearts is not only a romance, but a fun sports theme background, as both of our heroes are hockey players. The story starts 9 years earlier, when Ben our hero is just starting his hockey career at 19 years old. He meets a teen age hockey fan, with blue hair and together they spend a wild night that neither have forgotten years later. When he gets up in the morning, the girl of his dreams is gone, with only a note that she had fun and signed it Hailey.
Picking up in the present, Hailey, our beautiful heroine, is playing hockey with the boys during their practice session. She is as tough as they are, and thinks nothing of getting into a fight, as hockey is known for. Hailey is very good, could probably make the boys team, but her goal is to make the Olympic girls team. She works at her father’s restaurant, and practices during her off hours.
Ben, who is a goalie for the Vancouver team, is on the disabled list with a severe knee injury. He decides to get away from everything, and goes to a small town to rest, alleviate the pressure and avoid thinking about getting back on the ice. Of course, as fate would have it, this is the town Hailey lives in. But when Ben sees this pretty blond girl, he has a sense of déjà vu, but he can’t remember from where. Hailey recognizes him, as Ben is now famous, and she avoids him like the plague.Read more ›
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Crista McHugh is a NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY BESTSELLING author of fantasy and romance with heroines who are smart, sexy, and anything but ordinary.
Growing up in small town Alabama, Crista relied on story-telling as a natural way for her to pass the time and keep her two younger sisters entertained.
She currently lives in the Audi-filled suburbs of Seattle with her husband and two children, maintaining her alter ego of mild-mannered physician by day while she continues to pursue writing on nights and weekends.
Just for laughs, here are some of the jobs she's had in the past to pay the bills: barista, bartender, sommelier, stagehand, actress, morgue attendant, and autopsy assistant.
And she's also a recovering LARPer. (She blames it on her crazy college days)
To be the first to know about her latest releases or to be entered into exclusive contests, please sign up for her newsletter using the contact form on her webpage, www.cristamchugh.com.