A MelanieM Audiobook Review: The Hockey Player’s Heart (Hockey Hearts) by Jeff Adams and Will Knauss with Finn Sterling (Narrator)

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

When hockey star Caleb Carter returns to his hometown to recover from an injury, the only thing he’s interested in is a little R & R. He never expects to run into his onetime crush at a grade school fund-raiser . Seeing Aaron Price hits him hard, like being checked into the boards. The attraction is still there, even after all these years, and Caleb decides to make a play for the schoolteacher. You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take, right?

Aaron has been burned by love before and can’t imagine what a celebrity like Caleb could possibly see in a guy like him. Their differences are just too great. But as Aaron spends more time with Caleb, he begins to wonder if he might have what it takes to win the hockey player’s heart.

The Hockey Player’s Heart (Hockey Hearts) by Jeff Adams and Will Knauss combines several elements that made this an automatic listen.  First and foremost is hockey!  I love hockey and hockey players and this story has that in hockey star Caleb Carter who is returning home to rehab his injury.  Secondly? The chance for an old crush to reignite into something more.  Caleb has always had something for Aaron Price who long ago used to tutor him in math.  Now both are grown and will get the chance to meet again back in FosterGrove, their hometown where Aaron teaches math.  Yes! Second chances!  Another favorite trope of mine.  And thirdly?  The fact that Aaron’s been hurt before and doesn’t see himself as anyone lovable or good enough for a relationship.

The character of Caleb is by far my favorite.  Strong, generous, thoughtful, yet not perfect, Caleb is the one you instantly connect with.  Aaron the teacher I absolutely adored.  The scenes with his students shines with the knowledge of someone with understanding of what makes a great teacher.  It’s with his students and within the framework of his profession that Aaron is a whole person. Outside of it, then Aaron is a person full of doubts and issues of self-worth.  I thought the authors did a sensitive job with Aaron’s past and yet, in many respects for me, this aspect of Aaron…his constant insecurity issues almost became an irritating factor after a while. Especially when faced when the hurt he was causing without actually having more discussions.

Yes, it all came right at the end through a totally charming scene that showed Aaron how wrong he’d been.  Still.  While I appreciated the need for Aaron to work through his issues, I just felt as though it went on far too long considering the length of the story.  More romance, less nattering about.  Because together they are wonderful!

The narration by Finn Sterling was terrific.  I loved his voice for Caleb, and he juggled all the roles easily, even the feminine voices, like Caleb’s sister’s and Aaron’s students which did come across as young as they were written.  Well done!  Listening to this story, the time flew by,  I was able to lose myself in their romance and have a wonderful doing doing it.  That lets me definitely recommend this audiobook to you as well.

Cover art: Bree Archer. Love this cover.  It’s bright and happy, with Foster Grove’s main street laid out behind  Caleb!  Great job.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | Audible | iTunes

Audiobook Details:

Audible Audio, Dreamspun Desires #50
Published March 30th 2018 by Dreamspinner Press (first published January 16th 2018)
Edition Language English
SeriesHockey Hearts #1
CharactersAaron Price, Caleb Carter
settingF oster Grove, New York (United States)

Jeff Adams and Will Knauss on Video Tour for The Hockey Player’s Heart (Hockey Hearts #1) (vid and giveaway)

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The Hockey Player’s Heart (Hockey Hearts #1)
by Jeff Adams and Will Knauss
Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Bree Archer

Buy Links:  Dreamspinner Press |  Amazon: | iBooks  | Kobo  

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Jeff Adams and Will Knauss here today on their Video tour for The Hockey Player’s Heart.  Welcome, Jeff and Will.

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Hi! We’re thrilled to be here on Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words for the blog tour for The Hockey Player’s Heart. We hope you’ll have a look at the video to see an interview we did with each other using Scattered Thoughts great question list. Plus there are some other goodies below the video too, including giveaway info!

https://youtu.be/kQVeX6MlvDk

Blurb

Hometown hero. Hockey superstar. Perfect boyfriend?

When hockey star Caleb Carter returns to his hometown to recover from an injury, the only thing he’s interested in is a little R & R. He never expects to run into his onetime crush at a grade school fund-raiser . Seeing Aaron Price hits him hard, like being checked into the boards. The attraction is still there, even after all these years, and Caleb decides to make a play for the schoolteacher. You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take, right?

Aaron has been burned by love before and can’t imagine what a celebrity like Caleb could possibly see in a guy like him. Their differences are just too great. But as Aaron spends more time with Caleb, he begins to wonder if he might have what it takes to win the hockey player’s heart.

Excerpt

Caleb worried that Aaron wasn’t having a good time. The evening was supposed to just be two people catching up. Yes, Caleb found Aaron more attractive than ever, and he’d love the chance to take things further. But he wouldn’t risk the renewed friendship, or Pam’s wrath, just to get what he’d wanted since he was sixteen. So far Aaron hadn’t seemed interested in going down that path.

“You sure this walk’s a good idea?” Even as he asked, Aaron led them away from where the SUV was parked and down a sidewalk filled with storefronts.

“If my foot acts up, I’ll let you know,” Caleb said as he looked at the buildings around them. “This area has really transformed. Pam said there’d been changes, but this is quite impressive.”

“Most of it’s happened in the last year. Nate moving in and updating the look of the building before he opened has a lot to do with it, from what I’ve heard. New places are still popping up in this area too.”

“I remember when hardly anything was open after seven, even on the weekends.” Caleb traded nods with the people who acknowledged him. “It’s weird seeing all this activity and it’s almost nine.”

“Pam and I spent many weekend nights sitting in the same booth at Denny’s because it was the only place open late.”

Caleb enjoyed the trip down memory lane. Denny’s was the place he and his teammates would go after hockey games because it could easily accommodate a couple dozen hungry teenagers. “It still around?”

“Oh yeah. Most of the new places are too expensive for the high school crowd, so they still end up there.”

“It’d be fun to get Pam and hang out in your old booth.” Caleb laughed at his idea. “If you’d let me, that is. You two never wanted me to hang around there.”

“You were a junior and her brother. It just wasn’t right.” Aaron became more animated and Caleb liked it. It was the freest Aaron had been all evening. “As the local sports star, I think you’d decide who could sit with you. And I’m sorry to say, our booth is gone. They remodeled, and that side of the restaurant is all freestanding tables and chairs.”

“I can’t believe Pam let them do that.”

“Right. Although she blames me since I wasn’t here to help stop it.” Aaron’s mood faltered. Caleb knew Pam would’ve only meant that as a joke, so the reaction was strange. “Sometimes she acts like I didn’t miss her because I didn’t visit, but it just never worked out.”

About the Authors

Jeff Adams and Will Knauss are husbands, authors, and podcasters based in Northern California. They write gay romances, sometimes together and other times separately. Jeff also writes young adult LGBT fiction. Together they host Jeff & Will’s Big Gay Fiction Podcast, a weekly show devoted to gay romance literature and the pop culture they love.

Websites:

Jeff: JeffAdamsWrites.com

Will: WillKnauss.com

Podcast: BigGayFictionPodcast.com

Giveaway

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On Tour: