Off the Ice – book review

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Off the Ice
By L.P. Dover
Release Date:  October 16, 2018
Publisher:  L.P. Dover, LLC
Book #4 of the Breakaway series
Number of pages:  243
Kindle Edition
Source: ARC from Net Galley
Contemporary Romance/Sports M/F
Rating: XXX
Read 10/6/18

It is with much relief that this story truly takes place, for the most part, off the ice.  Although I keep coming back to this series, I’ve made no secret of the fact this author’s lack of hockey knowledge drives me bananas.  Now, if the same holds true for you, I will warn you that the first chapter will make you want to pull your hair out.  But after that, the hockey world is more or less left behind so the sailing’s a bit smoother.

Justin and Meghan meet in a very innocent way that makes Justin really relax and be himself with her.  I love that, from the get-go, neither wanted to lie even while withholding the whole truth.  And in both cases, it was more or less to protect the other one.  They get hot and steamy eventually, but still there’s this level of sweetness to their whole relationship.  Justin is just amazing.  Sure, he can be hot-headed…but only when it comes to protecting those he loves and his reputation.  He doesn’t back down from a fight when it’s the right thing to do.

This book did much better than the last one, mostly because I didn’t have to deal with the hockey issues.  But there were still some real problems with editing and timeline.  Again, I read an ARC so the editing may be a bit better in the final product.  But I got the ARC less than 2 weeks before publication so I’m doubtful.  There is a lot of awkward word usage and sentence structure that really throws off the flow of the story.  And honestly, it was a good story that I read quickly.  It would have been a million times better without these issues. 

I’d also like to beg this author to stay away from writing LGBTQ characters unless they’ll be run by someone in the know.  While it doesn’t come across as the author being homophobic or anything of that nature, the particular character seems to be a caricature of a gay man.  I’m glad the character isn’t shown much because it would have made the book quite cringe-worthy if he was.

It still confuses me to no end that this author can have such great ideas for stories and write such amazing chemistry in her couples but cannot get basic facts and grammar correct.  And keep a timeline!!! You need to know your time zones and time differences, or else things start to not make sense!  It seems, from her dedication at the beginning, this will be the last Breakaway book.  I have to say I’m a bit relieved since I wasn’t able to quit this series…all while it drove me nuts.  I just wish I would have seen more growth in the author’s research as the series progressed, so I could continue reading her work.  Unfortunately, that didn’t really happen.  I’m sure her books make many people very happy.  I’m just a nit-picky reader and notice even slight problems so it’s too difficult for me to relax with her stories.

3 stars

**I received an ARC of this book courtesy of Net Galley and the publisher. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and given freely**

About Cheri

I'm the mom of two boys and wife to my high school sweetheart. Our oldest, Josh, is living at home while working and paying off student loans. Our youngest, Griffin recently left his active duty Army job and is now National Guard here at home. He moved back to Michigan with his wife Kirsten and our beautiful granddaughter Hazel. I work part time and try to fit as much reading into my life as possible.
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