A MelanieM Review: Last Defense (Harrisburg Railers #5) by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey

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Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5

 

Two men afraid to feel, have to make choices that could end up breaking down their defenses and leading them back to love. 

Every time Max Van Hellren steps on the ice he knows it could be his last time. At thirty-two he’s past his prime but he’s also hiding a life-threatening injury that private doctors warn could kill him. This is his last season, and there’s a chance he could lift the Stanley Cup after fourteen years in the NHL. He just needs to stay safe and healthy; difficult when he’s known for his heavy hitting and with a propensity for dropping the gloves and putting his body in the way of pucks to keep his team safe. A one-night stand with a sexy man was just what he needed, dangerous and hot, but what if it turned into more? Would he have to share the secrets he so desperately tries to hide?

Ben Worthington had it all. A fulfilling job running the CrossRoads Shelter, his loving aunts, and a husband that understood his devotion to animals. Then, the love of his life left him, succumbing so quickly to an unexpected sickness that Ben never had time to say goodbye. The violent loss scarred him. Unable to move past his fears, he moves from lonely encounter to lonely encounter, slaking a desperate need that is eating away at him, but never making a connection that could lead him back into love. One night with Max makes him want more, but will giving into the temptation open the door to feelings he can’t contain?

Can these two broken man ever find a way to be together?

Last Defense is another wonderful addition to the Harrisburg Railers hockey series by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey.  I just adore this series, written by two authors whose novels I love separately but together are producing a series that combines the excitement and camaraderie of pro hockey teams with high romance.  It just works so well!

And boy, can they write hockey! I know V.L. Locey is a true blue hockey fan and it shows! Those action scenes on ice just power off the page!  But again I’m getting ahead of myself.

Here we have a relatively new addition to the Railer’s,Max Van Hellren, signed for an injured player on the recovery list.  Max is on borrowed time.  He has a medical condition known only to him and his doctor and this is his last season.  He wants to make it count.  Immediately the authors have given us a man we can understand.  He’s a poignant character, full of passion and about to lose that which he cares about.  With nothing to take its place.

Until Ben and his dog, Bucky walk into the arena and his life.  Ben also has his own void in his life, one left when his husband died suddenly.  Now his life is filled running their no-kill shelter and spending time with his elderly, and highly political aunts.

Switching points of view gives us in depth history and ability to be able to connect with each man as they meet, maneuver through their complicated maze of feelings about each other, the swirling outside family drama that arises, and, of course, the fact that the Railers are making a run for the Stanley Cup!!

I loved the characterizations here.  Incorporating Ben’s grief and fear over the loss of his husband and then extending that to the potential loss of another is a reasonable fear here for Ben.  One he needs to work through.  And Max’s issues with his health versus his needs and goals are also realistic and believable.

Always a bonus?  Seeing some of my other series favs pop up.  Like Stan the Railers Russian goalie in search of his perfect rescue dog for his family and of course Trent Hanson’s nana dressed all in orange (Deep Edge) doing her thing in the arena. Hint.  She’s not a Railers fan.  The series, like the team, is made up of everyone we’ve come to love and like a family they appear to support each couple and their relationship.

I would have liked to have seen a little bit more resolution to the family drama but maybe that;s because that awful family member might pop up again later in the series.  Can’t tell yet.  I would have loved to have seen him dealt with throughly. That’s my only slight issue here.

Otherwise I loved this tale.  Its adding up to just one more story fleshing out a team that’s unforgettable.  You don’t need to love hockey to love the Harrisburg Railers and the men who romance them.  Of course if you do, then its double and triple the fun!

Yes, I highly recommend this series and the authors.  Start at the beginning and work your way here.  It’s so much more fun that way!

 

Cover Design: Meredith Russell.  Love this cover.  Works so well for the characters involved.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 170 pages
Published May 16th 2018 by Love Lane Books Limited
ISBN139781785641145
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesHarrisburg Railers #5

 

Harrisburg Railers Series

Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #3 – Deep Edge – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #4 – Poke Check – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Review Tour – Last Defense (Harrisburg Railers #5) by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 52,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 – Deep Edge – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #4 – Poke Check – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

Two men afraid to feel, have to make choices that could end up breaking down their defenses and leading them back to love.

Every time Max Van Hellren steps on the ice he knows it could be his last time. At thirty he’s past his hockey prime but he’s also hiding a life-threatening injury that private doctors warn could kill him. This is his last season, and there’s a chance he could lift the Stanley Cup after fourteen years in the NHL. He just needs to stay safe and healthy; difficult when he’s known for his heavy hitting and with a propensity for dropping the gloves and putting his body in the way of pucks to keep his team safe.

A one night stand with a sexy man was just what he needed, dangerous and hot, but what if it turned into more? Would he actually have to share the secrets he so desperately tries to hide?

Ben Worthington had it all. A fulfilling job running the CrossRoads Shelter, his loving aunts, and a husband that understood his devotion to animals. Then, the love of his life left him, succumbing so quickly to an unexpected sickness that Ben never had time to say goodbye. The violent loss scarred him.

Unable to move past his fears, he moves from lonely encounter to lonely encounter, slaking a desperate need that is eating away at him, but never making a connection that could lead him back into love. One night with Max makes him want more, but will giving into the temptation open the door to feelings he can’t contain?

Can these two broken men ever find a way to be together?



May 16 – Reading In Sarah’s Corner, Xtreme Delusions, Urban Smoothie Read
May 18 – Katie’s Book Corner, We Three Queens, The Geekery Book Review, Gay Media Reviews, Bookaholic & Kindle
May 21 – MM Midnight Cafe, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, My Fiction Nook, My Book Filled Life
May 23 – OMG Reads, Jim’s Reading Room, MM Good Book Reviews, RAM PA Group
May 25 – Nerdy Dirty & Flirty, Making It Happen
May 28 – Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews, Wicked Reads
May 30 – Book Lovers 4Ever, Padme’s Library
June 1 – Book Review By Virginia Lee, Mirrigold, Bayou Book Junkie

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words review here.
 
Excerpt
 

“Nice dog.” I paused just this side of the players’ entrance at the deep voice coming from behind me. There was something about that man’s voice…the timbre of the bass or the way he spoke. Not sure what it was, but the last time he’d spoken to me my body had had the same kind of reaction. A spear of latent heat low in my belly followed by a shiv of icy dread.

“Thanks.” I wanted to stare at the door. Or run. I couldn’t do either of those, though, so I turned to face the bearded man. Christ, but he was fierce-looking. Like a Viking, with piercing eyes and an aura that screamed berserker. He was bigger than me. Taller by at least four inches and probably sixty pounds. He was wearing a suit, as Stan and Erik had been, but his looked incredibly fine on his burly frame. Dark blue with a silver tie and a white shirt. His biceps strained the material trying to contain them.

“His name is Bucky.” There now, I had spoken to the man who made my heart leap around inside my chest like a frog on a highway.

“Like Captain America’s sidekick?” He looked down at my worn T-shirt with Cap’s shield on it.

“Exactly like that.”

He took another step, which put him into my little personal space bubble, his gaze and mine locked. I wet my lips and jerked my chin up a bit. I wasn’t going to let some hockey player intimidate me.

“Cute dog. Hot owner.” He gave me a long, slow look, petted Bucky, and stepped around the dull-witted man trying to digest the fact Mr. Fear had said he was hot. “Are you coming in, or are you teaching your dog to open doors mentally?”

“I’m here to see Layton Foxx.”

“Yeah? Well, I’m here to participate in morning skate.”

“I know who you are. Max van Hellren. You played for Washington four years ago.”

He tugged the door open and settled a kind of bored look on me. “Yeah, that was me. You like Washington?”

“Hometown team.” Bucky barked to back me up. Max smiled. All the ferocity that oozed out of him dissipated when he smiled. The man was seriously fine.

“Maybe I can change your mind about which team to cheer for, Mr. Washington Fan.”

“Ben. My name is Ben.”

He nodded just once, his hand still keeping the door open. “Ben. I like that. Suits you. So, are we coming in or are we going to flirt here in front of Pete?”

A security guard peeked around the door and winked at me. I wanted to die. Right there.

“I don’t flirt,” I snapped. I stalked around Max and Pete and went off to find Layton Foxx. Determination hot in my breast kept me from looking back to see if Max was checking out my ass. I hoped he was and I prayed he wasn’t.

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.

RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, Dr. Who, Torchwood, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, two Jersey steers and a flock of assorted domestic fowl.

When not writing lusty tales, she can be found enjoying her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand.

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Release Blitz Tour – Last Defense (Harrisburg Railers #5) by RJ Scott & VL Locey (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 52,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 – Deep Edge – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #4 – Poke Check – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

Two men afraid to feel, have to make choices that could end up breaking down their defenses and leading them back to love.

Every time Max Van Hellren steps on the ice he knows it could be his last time. At thirty he’s past his hockey prime but he’s also hiding a life-threatening injury that private doctors warn could kill him. This is his last season, and there’s a chance he could lift the Stanley Cup after fourteen years in the NHL. He just needs to stay safe and healthy; difficult when he’s known for his heavy hitting and with a propensity for dropping the gloves and putting his body in the way of pucks to keep his team safe.

A one night stand with a sexy man was just what he needed, dangerous and hot, but what if it turned into more? Would he actually have to share the secrets he so desperately tries to hide?

Ben Worthington had it all. A fulfilling job running the CrossRoads Shelter, his loving aunts, and a husband that understood his devotion to animals. Then, the love of his life left him, succumbing so quickly to an unexpected sickness that Ben never had time to say goodbye. The violent loss scarred him.

Unable to move past his fears, he moves from lonely encounter to lonely encounter, slaking a desperate need that is eating away at him, but never making a connection that could lead him back into love. One night with Max makes him want more, but will giving into the temptation open the door to feelings he can’t contain?

Can these two broken men ever find a way to be together?

 
Excerpt
 

“Nice dog.” I paused just this side of the players’ entrance at the deep voice coming from behind me. There was something about that man’s voice…the timbre of the bass or the way he spoke. Not sure what it was, but the last time he’d spoken to me my body had had the same kind of reaction. A spear of latent heat low in my belly followed by a shiv of icy dread.

“Thanks.” I wanted to stare at the door. Or run. I couldn’t do either of those, though, so I turned to face the bearded man. Christ, but he was fierce-looking. Like a Viking, with piercing eyes and an aura that screamed berserker. He was bigger than me. Taller by at least four inches and probably sixty pounds. He was wearing a suit, as Stan and Erik had been, but his looked incredibly fine on his burly frame. Dark blue with a silver tie and a white shirt. His biceps strained the material trying to contain them.

“His name is Bucky.” There now, I had spoken to the man who made my heart leap around inside my chest like a frog on a highway.

“Like Captain America’s sidekick?” He looked down at my worn T-shirt with Cap’s shield on it.

“Exactly like that.”

He took another step, which put him into my little personal space bubble, his gaze and mine locked. I wet my lips and jerked my chin up a bit. I wasn’t going to let some hockey player intimidate me.

“Cute dog. Hot owner.” He gave me a long, slow look, petted Bucky, and stepped around the dull-witted man trying to digest the fact Mr. Fear had said he was hot. “Are you coming in, or are you teaching your dog to open doors mentally?”

“I’m here to see Layton Foxx.”

“Yeah? Well, I’m here to participate in morning skate.”

“I know who you are. Max van Hellren. You played for Washington four years ago.”

He tugged the door open and settled a kind of bored look on me. “Yeah, that was me. You like Washington?”

“Hometown team.” Bucky barked to back me up. Max smiled. All the ferocity that oozed out of him dissipated when he smiled. The man was seriously fine.

“Maybe I can change your mind about which team to cheer for, Mr. Washington Fan.”

“Ben. My name is Ben.”

He nodded just once, his hand still keeping the door open. “Ben. I like that. Suits you. So, are we coming in or are we going to flirt here in front of Pete?”

A security guard peeked around the door and winked at me. I wanted to die. Right there.

“I don’t flirt,” I snapped. I stalked around Max and Pete and went off to find Layton Foxx. Determination hot in my breast kept me from looking back to see if Max was checking out my ass. I hoped he was and I prayed he wasn’t.

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.

RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, Dr. Who, Torchwood, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, two Jersey steers and a flock of assorted domestic fowl.

When not writing lusty tales, she can be found enjoying her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand.

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Hosted By Signal Boost Promotions

 

A MelanieM Review:Poke Check (Harrisburg Railers #4) by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

One scorching summer in each other’s arms could never be enough.


Stanislav “Stan” Lyamin is happy playing for the Railers. The towering goalie is well-loved, respected, and making a home for himself even though that home only contains him, his cat, and his growing Pokemon trading card collection. Stan prefers it that way.


He’d given his heart to a man in a secret affair, and that man walked away, leaving Stan shattered. Now Erik is back in his life, and he has the same tumultuous effect he had on Stan’s heart as before. This time it’s not just a kissable mouth and sweet blond curls that Erik has brought to Harrisburg, there’s a soon-to-be ex-wife and a precious baby.


Despite the vow Stan made to hate Erik forever, he’s now finding it harder and harder to turn away.


Erik Gunnarsson’s dream had always been to play in the NHL, he just never imagined he’d land a contract with the Railers. Who would have thought that fate would put him on the same team as Stanislav Lyamin; the man whose heart he’d callously broken?


Secrets and lies had defined their summer relationship, and the choice that Erik made to end it all haunts him still. In the middle of a messy divorce and with a baby in tow, Erik finds himself back in Stan’s life. Now all he has to do is be the best dad he can be, prove to the team that he deserves the chance to stay on the roster and try his hardest to get Stan to forgive him.

Is it possible to persuade a man who hates you to give love a second chance?

I’ve been waiting for Stan’s story ever since being introduced to the goalie in the Harrisburg Railers series.  With his staunch Russian soul and broken English, Stan quickly won my heart and those of a multitude of readers.  We wanted his story and his HEA.  Now we have it in  Poke Check (Harrisburg Railers #4) by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey. Should have known it would be a heartbreaker.

Turns out Stan has a secret love that went badly and ex shows up as a player brought up from their farm team to join the line. All the heartache and betrayal made fresh daily.  I love that Scott and Locey finally give us a window into this complicated man who misses his family, his mother and sister back in Russia, that he’s been creating a home for in Harrisburg.  Given his pov, we see his relative isolation (courtesy of his language barrier), his love for his team, and the crushing pain Erik’s handling of their affair has dealt him.  It is a visceral hurt for us all, due in part to the authors vivid and emotional descriptions that bring us deeply into Stan’s life.

Erik’s perspective also become’s a necessary part of their story.  We need to see what drove his decision, his interaction with his son, everything in order to connect with the man that hurt Stan.  Twining the two shared men’s stories strengthens our hopes and resolve to see them together.  You can see how clearly Erik needs not only Stan but the rest of the team for support, emotional and otherwise.

I loved watching the team meld together.  Locey is such an excellent sports writer.  Her scenes of the team together visually on ice, lining up as a team, mentally or figuratively, work to bring this novel alive.  So too the characters as breathing hockey players.  I

One element I very much appreciated was the development of the mother’s character.  There is no lop-sided villainess here but an individual not prepared to be a mother.  This is a thoughtful portrayal, realistic and believable.  I enjoy the hockey scenes as much as the romance….almost….lol.

There is a wonderful epilogue and a setup for the next story.  Honestly, this is one of my favorite series, full of complex men, with each relationship far different from the next.  I couldn’t recommend it more.  That includes Poke Check.

Cover Design: Meredith Russell .  Not my favorite cover.  Neither is my idea of the characters.  I mean have you seen Alex Ovechkin, the great 8, or any other of the Russian players?No match, not even close to the all American looking guy on the cover.

Buy Links:  AmazonUniversal Buy Links

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 178 pages
Published February 11th 2018 by Love Lane Books Ltd
ASINB079RJCGJK
SeriesHarrisburg Railers #4

Book #1 – Changing Lines

Book #2 – First Season

Book #3 – Deep Edge

Review Tour for Poke Check (Harrisburg Railers #4) by RJ Scott & VL Locey (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

 

 
Length: 50,000 words approx
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines
Book #2 – First Season
Book #3 – Deep Edge
 
Blurb
 

One scorching summer in each other’s arms could never be enough.


Stanislav “Stan” Lyamin is happy playing for the Railers. The towering goalie is well-loved, respected, and making a home for himself even though that home only contains him, his cat, and his growing Pokemon trading card collection. Stan prefers it that way.


He’d given his heart to a man in a secret affair, and that man walked away, leaving Stan shattered. Now Erik is back in his life, and he has the same tumultuous effect he had on Stan’s heart as before. This time it’s not just a kissable mouth and sweet blond curls that Erik has brought to Harrisburg, there’s a soon-to-be ex-wife and a precious baby.


Despite the vow Stan made to hate Erik forever, he’s now finding it harder and harder to turn away.


Erik Gunnarsson’s dream had always been to play in the NHL, he just never imagined he’d land a contract with the Railers. Who would have thought that fate would put him on the same team as Stanislav Lyamin; the man whose heart he’d callously broken?


Secrets and lies had defined their summer relationship, and the choice that Erik made to end it all haunts him still. In the middle of a messy divorce and with a baby in tow, Erik finds himself back in Stan’s life. Now all he has to do is be the best dad he can be, prove to the team that he deserves the chance to stay on the roster and try his hardest to get Stan to forgive him.


Is it possible to persuade a man who hates you to give love a second chance?




Feb 14 – Gay Media Reviews, Reading In Sarah’s Corner, Xtreme Delusions, Urban Smoothie Read, My Fiction Nook, The Smut-Brarians
Feb 16 – Hearts On Fire Reviews, The Geekery Book Review, Booklove
Feb 21 – We Three Queens, Sarandipity, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Making It Happen, Books After Fifty, MM Good Book Reviews, Jessie G Books
Feb 23 – My Book Filled Life
Feb 26 – Book Lovers 4Ever, Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews, Wicked Reads
Feb 28 – Valerie Ullmer, Jim’s Reading Room, Padme’s Library
March 2 – Mirrigold, Bayou Book Junkie

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Review here.  We highly recommend it.

Excerpt
 

 

Stan


There are many people I would have rather seen standing on the ice of my practice arena than Erik. For example my beloved sister, Galina, my sainted mother, Arina, my cat, Lucy, or my new gay American heartthrob, Zachary Quinto.


Zachary would be wearing only a smile even though it’s cold on the ice.


But no, none of them were standing in front of me wearing a Railers sweater and curls. Those damn golden curls. They’d always tempted me beyond sense. As had his mouth. And the way he would tilt his head when he was trying to understand me out of bed. In bed? There was no language barrier. Our bodies had always been tuned to each other like radio waves to a satellite dish.


Even now, I felt the low hum of his presence in my veins. I had feared this moment would come. From the first time I’d heard his name mentioned as being a new member of the Rush, our AHL feeder team, I’d known he would eventually stand in front of me, tipping his head, with his curls, his eyes and his mouth.


Connor was looking at me as if he expected something from me. Ah yes, words. He wanted me to say something. How did “go fuck a donkey” translate into English?


“We are known to each other.”


I skated to my net, mask perched on my head, and tried to focus. The humming in my blood was unsettling. Closing my eyes, I let the blue ice under my skates talk to me. Opening myself up to the sounds of hockey, the stress of seeing Erik again lessened. I whispered to the pipes as I tapped them. Asked them in Russian if they were going to be my friends during this practice.


“Uh, hey, I know this is a strict breach of protocol and all…but is there a problem between you and Gunner?”


I glanced to the left. Tennant stood there, geared up, his stick casually resting across his shoulders. So Erik now had his American hockey nickname. Why didn’t I have a new American hockey nickname? Pah. I was being petty. It tasted bad on my tongue.


“Gunner is okay person from time back in space.” Was that right? English was hard to speak. It made no sense. How could there be three ways to spell one word? Russian was simple. Strong. Pure. A language of passion and spirit. American was whiney and tied my brain into knots. No, that was not true. American was a wonderful language. It was me who was whiney and unhappy. “Time back. In the back of time. Is bad time to talk. Go away.”

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.


RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.


The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

 

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, Dr. Who, Torchwood, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, two Jersey steers and a flock of assorted domestic fowl.


When not writing lusty tales, she can be found enjoying her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand.

 

Giveaway

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Hosted By Signal Boost Promotions

 

Release Blitz Tour for Poke Check (Harrisburg Railers #3) by RJ Scott & VL Locey (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

 

 
Length: 50,000 words approx
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines
Book #2 – First Season
Book #3 – Deep Edge
 
Blurb
 

One scorching summer in each other’s arms could never be enough.

Stanislav “Stan” Lyamin is happy playing for the Railers. The towering goalie is well-loved, respected, and making a home for himself even though that home only contains him, his cat, and his growing Pokemon trading card collection. Stan prefers it that way.

He’d given his heart to a man in a secret affair, and that man walked away, leaving Stan shattered. Now Erik is back in his life, and he has the same tumultuous effect he had on Stan’s heart as before. This time it’s not just a kissable mouth and sweet blond curls that Erik has brought to Harrisburg, there’s a soon-to-be ex-wife and a precious baby.

Despite the vow Stan made to hate Erik forever, he’s now finding it harder and harder to turn away.

Erik Gunnarsson’s dream had always been to play in the NHL, he just never imagined he’d land a contract with the Railers. Who would have thought that fate would put him on the same team as Stanislav Lyamin; the man whose heart he’d callously broken?

Secrets and lies had defined their summer relationship, and the choice that Erik made to end it all haunts him still. In the middle of a messy divorce and with a baby in tow, Erik finds himself back in Stan’s life. Now all he has to do is be the best dad he can be, prove to the team that he deserves the chance to stay on the roster and try his hardest to get Stan to forgive him.

Is it possible to persuade a man who hates you to give love a second chance?

 

Excerpt
 

Stan

There are many people I would have rather seen standing on the ice of my practice arena than Erik. For example my beloved sister, Galina, my sainted mother, Arina, my cat, Lucy, or my new gay American heartthrob, Zachary Quinto.

Zachary would be wearing only a smile even though it’s cold on the ice.

But no, none of them were standing in front of me wearing a Railers sweater and curls. Those damn golden curls. They’d always tempted me beyond sense. As had his mouth. And the way he would tilt his head when he was trying to understand me out of bed. In bed? There was no language barrier. Our bodies had always been tuned to each other like radio waves to a satellite dish.

Even now, I felt the low hum of his presence in my veins. I had feared this moment would come. From the first time I’d heard his name mentioned as being a new member of the Rush, our AHL feeder team, I’d known he would eventually stand in front of me, tipping his head, with his curls, his eyes and his mouth.

Connor was looking at me as if he expected something from me. Ah yes, words. He wanted me to say something. How did “go fuck a donkey” translate into English?

“We are known to each other.”

I skated to my net, mask perched on my head, and tried to focus. The humming in my blood was unsettling. Closing my eyes, I let the blue ice under my skates talk to me. Opening myself up to the sounds of hockey, the stress of seeing Erik again lessened. I whispered to the pipes as I tapped them. Asked them in Russian if they were going to be my friends during this practice.

“Uh, hey, I know this is a strict breach of protocol and all…but is there a problem between you and Gunner?”

I glanced to the left. Tennant stood there, geared up, his stick casually resting across his shoulders. So Erik now had his American hockey nickname. Why didn’t I have a new American hockey nickname? Pah. I was being petty. It tasted bad on my tongue.

“Gunner is okay person from time back in space.” Was that right? English was hard to speak. It made no sense. How could there be three ways to spell one word? Russian was simple. Strong. Pure. A language of passion and spirit. American was whiney and tied my brain into knots. No, that was not true. American was a wonderful language. It was me who was whiney and unhappy. “Time back. In the back of time. Is bad time to talk. Go away.”

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.

RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

 

Goodreads Page | RJís Blog | RJ on Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, Dr. Who, Torchwood, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, two Jersey steers and a flock of assorted domestic fowl.

When not writing lusty tales, she can be found enjoying her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand.



Website | Goodreads | Amazon | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Blog

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A MelanieM Review: Deep Edge (Harrisburg Railers #3) by RJ Scott & VL Locey

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Rating: 4.75 stars out of 5

One man’s passion, another man’s lies. Can love fix even the darkest of hearts.

Trent Hanson is a figure skating phenom adored by millions around the world. His whole life has been dedicated to the sport he loves even when the sport – and his own family – have turned against him. From the playground to the Olympics to his parent’s living room, Trent has fought against bullies and homophobes to be the out and proud gay man he is. But the constant fighting has left Trent tired, lonely, and skittish. All those fears will have to be shelved though when he’s hired to spend the summer working with the Harrisburg Railers ice hockey team. Who would have guessed that the man fate has decided to pair him off with is Dieter Lehmann, all-around sex god and a man who seems to have everything to prove and doesn’t care who he hurts to get what he wants.

Dieter has spent too many years languishing in the minors and a secret addiction to prescription painkillers means his career is in a downward spiral. His ex is blackmailing him and he’s close to walking away from it all. But when he’s called up in the run for the Stanley Cup to cover injuries he has a taste of what it’s like playing in the NHL and he realizes that a place on the Railers roster is what he wants more than anything. More than listening to his heart, and even more than caring for the infuriating figure skater who gets under his skin. When he crosses the line to get what he wants, he knows he has lost his way. He has to change, but is it too late for both his career and any chance he might have at love?

I’ve fallen in love with this series about the Harrisburg Railers hockey players and the men they love. It has built out from the core couple upcoming hockey star, Tennant Rowe of the famed Rowe Brothers and Coach Jared Madsen (Changing Lines (Harrisburg Railers #1).  Their coming out and romance launched the team into LGBT acceptance and brought in Layton Foxx, the professional to help the Railers with the couple’s coming out to the public and the NHL.  He also found romance within the team, although that’s still a secret (First Season (Harrisburg Railers #2).

And with each story, the characters background has become a little more complicated, and perhaps even layered over with tones of isolation, denial, and abuse. Never does that come more abundantly clear than with Dieter Lehmann, a complex hockey player who’s looking at his last chance  to be the man and player he wants…if he just doesn’t screw it up as he has in the past.  Dieter has been on the edge of our consciousnesses for the last two stories, a vivid irritant of a man who had to come up to be seen.  What a story RJ Scott and VL Locey has for him.

It includes flamboyant, smokey eyed Trent Hanson, a figure skater with his own huge demons to fight.  A tiny powerhouse come to film a reality series amongst the “hockey apes” as he calls them.  Loaded with preconceptions left over from an awful highschool loaded with jocks who bullied him mercilessly, the authors do a beautiful job, first by making this man real and authentic with his story, skating history, and ethnicity (love his grandmother the snippy pumpkin).

So while you could think this is just an opposites attract story, it also includes much  deeper, more serious  layers that speak to addictions, recovery, and therapy.  And does so in a realistic and even gritty manner at times.  For tackling all that, plus the romance, and the continuing overall series arc and pulling them off to a grand effect? Deep Edge (Harrisburg Railers #3) by RJ Scott & VL Locey is a story that’s close to perfect.  Truly with each story this series just keeps getting better and better.  I can’t wait for Poke Check (Stan’s story), to arrive.  

If you love contemporary romance, check out RJ Scott and VL Locey’s Harrisburg Railer’s series.  The writing is great, you’ll love the characters and the plots and there’s more stories to come!  I highly recommend them all.

Cover art by Meredith Russell. Unfortunately not a fan of this cover.  That’s definitely not my idea of Trent Hanson.  Looks like he has two black  eyes instead of the perfectly applied eyeliner he’s known for.  Beautiful and delicate?  Uh no.

Sales Links:

Amazon US | Amazon UK | KOBO | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords 

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 181 pages
Published December 1st 2017 by Love Lane Books Ltd

Review Tour and Giveaway : Deep Edge (Harrisburg Railers #3) by RJ Scott & VL Locey

Standard

 

 
Length: 52,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

One man’s passion, another man’s lies. Can love fix even the darkest of hearts?


Trent Hanson is a figure skating phenom adored by millions around the world. His whole life has been dedicated to the sport he loves even when the sport – and his own family – have turned against him. From the playground to the Olympics to his parent’s living room, Trent has fought against bullies and homophobes to be the out and proud gay man he is. But the constant fighting has left Trent tired, lonely, and skittish. All those fears will have to be shelved though when he’s hired to spend the summer working with the Harrisburg Railers ice hockey team. Who would have guessed that the man fate has decided to pair him off with is Dieter Lehmann, all-around sex god and a man who seems to have everything to prove and doesn’t care who he hurts to get what he wants.


Dieter has spent too many years languishing in the minors and a secret addiction to prescription painkillers means his career is in a downward spiral. His ex is blackmailing him and he’s close to walking away from it all. But when he’s called up in the run for the Stanley Cup to cover injuries he has a taste of what it’s like playing in the NHL and he realizes that a place on the Railers roster is what he wants more than anything. More than listening to his heart, and even more than caring for the infuriating figure skater who gets under his skin. When he crosses the line to get what he wants, he knows he has lost his way. He has to change, but is it too late for both his career and any chance he might have at love?

 

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Review here.  We Highly Recommend it and the entire series.




December 1 – Reading In Sarah’s Corner, Urban Smoothie Read, Nerdy Dirty & Flirty, The Smut-Brarians, Xtreme Delusions, Mirrigold: Musings & Mutterings, Nautical Star Books, Jessie G Books
December 6 – Making It Happen, We Three Queens, My Fiction Nook
December 8 – Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Sarandipity, Wicked Reads, Jim’s Reading Room, MM Good Book Reviews
December 11 – Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews
December 13 – Padme’s Library, Book Lovers 4Ever, The Geekery Book Review
December 15 – Bayou Book Junkie 

RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.



mailto:rj@rjscott.co.uk
Website
Facebook
Goodreads
Twitter
LibraryThing

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and two Jersey steers.


When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.


Website
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Goodreads
Blog

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Release Blitz for Deep Edge (Harrisburg Railers #3) by RJ Scott & VL Locey

Standard

 

 
Length: 52,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

One man’s passion, another man’s lies. Can love fix even the darkest of hearts?

Trent Hanson is a figure skating phenom adored by millions around the world. His whole life has been dedicated to the sport he loves even when the sport – and his own family – have turned against him. From the playground to the Olympics to his parent’s living room, Trent has fought against bullies and homophobes to be the out and proud gay man he is. But the constant fighting has left Trent tired, lonely, and skittish. All those fears will have to be shelved though when he’s hired to spend the summer working with the Harrisburg Railers ice hockey team. Who would have guessed that the man fate has decided to pair him off with is Dieter Lehmann, all-around sex god and a man who seems to have everything to prove and doesn’t care who he hurts to get what he wants.

Dieter has spent too many years languishing in the minors and a secret addiction to prescription painkillers means his career is in a downward spiral. His ex is blackmailing him and he’s close to walking away from it all. But when he’s called up in the run for the Stanley Cup to cover injuries he has a taste of what it’s like playing in the NHL and he realizes that a place on the Railers roster is what he wants more than anything. More than listening to his heart, and even more than caring for the infuriating figure skater who gets under his skin. When he crosses the line to get what he wants, he knows he has lost his way. He has to change, but is it too late for both his career and any chance he might have at love?

 
Excerpt
 

Ah, agents. They were so lovely – when they weren’t embezzling all your money and spending it on whores, vodka gimlets, and a particularly bad run over a week in Atlantic City. Note to the young and innocent – never let your stepfather manage your money, especially when he’s open about how much he dislikes your gay little ass. That way you won’t end up broke, shamed, and trying to figure out how to keep your mother and grandmother from being booted out of their house while your rink teeters on the edge of financial ruin. Where the fuck had all my happy gone? I wanted it back, dammit!

I moved past the windows that looked down on Philadelphia, my hometown. I’d been born and raised in the City of Brotherly Love. I adored this city, and it loved me in return. Or had. Now I was just the mincing and well-dressed queer who didn’t even have two pennies to rub together. How quickly love and adoration turned to titters and cold shoulders. Drawing my coat around me, I sat down in a plush beige chair and crossed one leg over the other, making sure my coat draped properly over my thighs. I hate wrinkles. And beige. Why were straights so afraid of a little color?

Gayle sat down behind her desk, smiled at me yet again, and folded her hands in front of her. I raised a freshly plucked eyebrow. She was still trying to get a handle on me. Tobey & Troy was the largest athletic representation firm in Philly. They handled most of the Eagles, Sixers and Flyers, as well as several tennis players. And now they had me. Trent Lawrence Hanson. Famed gay figure skater and next in line to be a Dickens character in real life. Please, sir, I want some more. Ugh. As if I’d eat gruel. What if I had to? The thought was too much to bear.

“I think that now that the legal issues with your father—”

“Stepfather,” I quickly reminded her.

“Yes, sorry, stepfather. Well, now that he’s been convicted and is serving time, I think this is the moment to start working on marketing you in a positive light.” She smiled again, nervously, and leveled light blue eyes at me. “Where are you in terms of returning to competitive skating?”

I glanced out the window at Ben Franklin standing atop City Hall. I began running my hands over the thin cotton flaps lying over my thighs.

“I have no money, my professional reputation is shot, and both my rink and my mother’s house are two months away from foreclosure. Do you honestly think I could find the mental clarity and focus to skate again?” As soon as I heard how bitchy I sounded, I placed a hand over my mouth. “I’m so sorry,” I mumbled into my fingers.

“It’s quite understandable,” she replied. She was far too nice to be saddled with a miserable cow-bag like me. I wanted to cry, but didn’t. I’d do that later when I visited Mom and my Lola. “Would you like something to drink?”

“Water would be lovely,” I coughed into my fingers. She rang her receptionist. “I’m better now. See.” I lowered my hand and smiled brilliantly at her.

Gayle nodded, but melancholy lingered in her gaze. A tiny blonde hurried in with a bottle of water and handed it to me. I was about to ask if she could possibly find a cold one, but I bit my tongue. Bitchy Trent had already escaped once today.

“Thank you.”

She nodded and scurried out, closing the door behind her slim backside. Her shoes were terrible. Who wears black flats with a peach dress in late June? Honestly, women, learn how to dress. I took tiny sips of the tepid water. Gayle waited. I capped the bottle and balanced it in my left hand so my coat didn’t get watermarked. I was a beggar now. I had to keep my wardrobe in good shape. Tears threatened again.

Gayle broke into the building weep-fest. “I understand that you’re not mentally ready to return to figure skating. To that end, we need to find you something to do that will bring in good money so you can get your assets back in sound fiscal shape.”

“You mean pull my rink and my mother’s house out of the snapping jaws of foreclosure?”

“Well, I wouldn’t have been quite that dramatic…”

“Few are.” I sighed as I returned to working out the crinkles in my duster.

“Right, well, I’ve been approached by GLBTQtv about a reality show with you as the star.”

My chin dropped to my chest. “Get. Out.”

“I’m very serious,” Gayle said, her smile spreading into a grin. “They’re waving a nice fat contract at us.”

“I’ll do it! Wait. Are there lots of zeros mentioned in the contract?” I was so excited I grabbed my duster and wadded it up in my right hand.

“There are several zeros,” she whispered as her grin grew even wider.

“I’ll do it!” My gods, I was such a whore. Wave a ten in front of me and down to my knees I went. But zeros meant money. Money that would keep my family safely housed and my rink operational. Rainbow Skate was my rink. I’d bought it and refurbished it. It was where I practiced. And it was where little gay and straight children who wanted a safe place to skate and express themselves and their art could come. No hateful slurs or brutes were allowed at Rainbow Skate. That was my rule. I hated bullies. I’d dealt with them from the time I was eight and discovered how fabulous I was on skates and how amazing my sewing skills were. By the time I was fourteen and came out officially, not one person was shocked. My stepfather was disgusted, but then again, he was a thieving twat.

“Wonderful! I’ve read over the contract and it’s pretty straightforward.” I bounced in my seat as Gayle talked. “They’re asking for six to eight weeks with exclusive access to you and the Railers as you work with them.”

The bouncing slowed. “I’m sorry…” I tapped my right ear. “Did you say Railers? What are Railers?”

“They’re the hockey team that’s expressed a pointed interest in working with you on this show.”

I couldn’t control the laugh that burst out of me. I roared so long and so heartily that I was close to hyperventilating when the laughter began to die down. Gayle sat behind her desk, staring at me as if I’d gone around the bend.

Phew. Oh, my gods and garters,” I panted several minutes later. Dabbing gently under my eyes, I saw a blur of black on my fingertip. “And I thought this was waterproof eyeliner. Do you have tissues?”

She got up , grabbed a box from the edge of her desk, and handed it to me.

“Thank you.” I wiped my finger on a Kleenex, then gingerly pulled a tiny corner under my right and then left eye. “I hate this cheap stuff. I’m going to throw it out when I get home. Why did I even buy anything other than waterproof?”

“Is there a problem with you working with hockey players?” Gayle asked after she sat back down.

I tittered. “How much time do you have?” I asked.

She gawked at me.

“I do not do jocks.”

“But you’re a jock.”

“Uh, no, no, I am not. I’m an artist. I don’t go skating around hitting people in the face with sticks. No, sorry, this sweet thing,” I motioned to myself, “does not do hockey players, footballers, baseballers, basketballers, or those men who run around with nets to catch balls in. Lacrosse! I don’t do them either. I will do tennis players or an occasional fellow skater, but they can’t be on my team. Cat fights amongst team members are so ugly. I rather like Russian skaters. It’s the accent. I once did a Russian skater. He was delicious. I called it my Boris Godunov phase.”

I giggled at the witty, but Gayle simply continued to gape. I was so happy now – why was she being a prude?

“What?” I asked when she didn’t speak.

“Trent, this contract is contingent on you working with the Railers.”

“No, sorry. I don’t do hockey players. Didn’t we just cover that? They’re rude bullies who have never passed up an opportunity to shove me into lockers, dunk my head into toilets, or taunt me in front of everyone at the rink. Nope. Tell them I don’t do hockey players.”

RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.



mailto:rj@rjscott.co.uk
Website
Facebook
Goodreads
Twitter
LibraryThing

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and two Jersey steers.

When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.



Website
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Goodreads
Blog

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A MelanieM Review: Changing Lines (Harrisburg Railers #1) by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Can Tennant show Jared that age is just a number, and that love is all that matters? 

The Rowe Brothers are famous hockey hotshots, but as the youngest of the trio, Tennant has always had to play against his brothers’ reputations. To get out of their shadows, and against their advice, he accepts a trade to the Harrisburg Railers, where he runs into Jared Madsen. Mads is an old family friend and his brother’s one-time teammate. Mads is Tennant’s new coach. And Mads is the sexiest thing he’s ever laid eyes on.

Jared Madsen’s hockey career was cut short by a fault in his heart, but coaching keeps him close to the game. When Ten is traded to the team, his carefully organized world is thrown into chaos. Nine years his junior and his best friend’s brother, he knows Ten is strictly off-limits, but as soon as he sees Ten’s moves, on and off the ice, he knows that his heart could get him into trouble again.

What a great writing team RJ Scott and VL Locey make!  Throw in the players and game of hockey and you have all the makings of a great series and a wonderful novel.  Like football, hockey tends to run in families, and the authors create the famous Rowe Brothers, men who strike across some of the greatest teams in the NHL.  Then there is their youngest brother trying to find his own place, and with Ten, the readers find a character we can immediately understand and connect with.  He’s the underdog, the one fighting to shine and we need him to succeed.

Jared is a terrific romantic foil, older, known to the family, loyal to the team and now to Ten.  Yep, fell in love with Jared too.  Combine all the wonderful hockey elements that Locey does so well, the family aspects of the team as well as the real Rowe family, and Changing Lines has so much heart to it that you’ll want to pull on some skates yourself.

Changing Lines also starts the series arc of a NHL player coming out officially  and what that might mean to the player, teammates and team.  This is dealt with seriously and the issues taken apart at all levels from the corporate on down.  More so in the next novel.  I was really happy with the way the authors are have the characters deal with this issue, working it through between themselves as well as their families, teammates and organization.

In short, I love everything about this book and the characters we are getting to know.  This looks to be a wonderful ensemble series with teammates getting their own romances as well this couple continuing to move forward with their romance and overall storythread.  I can’t wait for more.

Cover art by Meredith Russell is great.  I love the depiction of the characters.

Sales Links:

 

Book Details:

ebook, 233 pages
Published July 12th 2017 by Love Lane Books Limited
Series Harrisburg Railers #1

Harrisburg Railers: