Van by Sawyer Bennett Release Date: November 28, 2017 Publisher: Loveswept Book #9 in the Cold Fury Hockey series Number of pages: 224 Kindle Edition Source: Amazon Purchase Contemporary Romance/Sports M/F Rating: XXX Read 2/4/18
Van intrigued me from the moment I met him in Lucas. While I had some idea of what his secret would be…or at least the basic gist of it…it was heartbreaking to read about how it all played out and the way Van holds onto such feelings. Unlike most of the other characters throughout this series (although there are a few who could fall into this category), Van truly is a jerk. He knows he’s a jerk and he’s pretty much that way on purpose. Usually the characters that are pricks have something underlying that those around them are attuned to, where they know the character isn’t as bad as they come across. With Van, pretty much everyone thinks he’s not a nice person.
Tenacious is the best word to describe Simone. You wouldn’t go through more than 3 years at an ivy league college getting good grades if you’re not tenacious. Coming from the Fournier clan, she has a lot of expectations on her shoulders. Once she decides to start making her own decisions (which we see the start of in Lucas) we see she’s also tenacious with her decisions about her own life…even if she feels she’ll be letting her family down. Of course, the Fournier’s are all great. So, while there is plenty of fuss and fighting, they all make sure Simone knows she is loved no matter what.
As much as Lucas and Max want to think their baby sister is innocent and sweet, she is a red-blooded grown woman with needs just like everyone else. Luckily for Van, she likes it rough. Since he’s not much into the touchy-feely sweet lovemaking scene, they really are perfect for each other in the sack. Of course, we all know that will lead to the touchy-feely stuff later.
I really loved watching Van grow with Simone, even while still keeping others at arm’s length. When his softer side starts making an appearance in his life outside of Simone, it’s really sweet how it just sneaks up on him. Simone, with her Fournier heart of gold and stubborn streak, is exactly what Van needs in his life. Even if he doesn’t want her to be.
The epilogue in this story is a bit different from what I would have expected, but I’m glad the author took Van’s story in that direction. It shows another side of the life and decisions of a professional athlete, that they don’t all think the same and necessarily want the same things.
I can’t believe I actually caught up in this series. By the time I post this the next book in the series will have just been published. That’s a good thing and a bad thing. Sure, sometimes when I wanted one of these books from the library I would have to wait on a waiting list. But now I’ll have to wait for the next books to be published which can take much longer. Such are the woes of an avid reader!