Meet the most wanted players in sports . . . one ridiculously hot alpha male at a time.
Chase: With a nickname like “Sin,” it’s no wonder they call me the bad boy of hockey. Opponents curse me. Fans scream my name—in the arena and in other, much more private places. Penalties or not, I’m not afraid to dish out a little pain. But pleasure? That’s my weakness. And no one knows it better than my best friend, Cassie Desrosiers. I’d have to be blind not to notice her rocking body and teasing grin. So when she invites me along on a trip to Vegas, my curiosity isn’t the only thing that’s aroused.
Cassie: Chase Barrett is a world-class A-hole. As his best friend, I’m allowed to call him on his BS. Who else is going to do it? Certainly not the puck bunnies swooning at every flex of his biceps. Everyone knows that Chase is the love-’em-and-leave-’em type. There’s no such thing as commitment for the king of casual hookups. So why should I care? Maybe because all work and no play makes me a sexually frustrated girl. It’s time to put the hockey stud at my beck and call to good use . . . but after a week in Vegas with Chase, I might never want to go back to the real world.
There’s an interesting dynamic between these two long-term best friends, and Nicole Edwards plays upon their friendliness and suppressed mutual attraction while they’re in Vegas, and even though before that point neither of them had anything but friendly feelings for each other, it’s clear that what happened in Vegas is not going to stay there because their compatibility as sexual partners and what seems to be building between them despite the fact they fear their friendship will implode if they pursue anything with one another, is something that won’t be contained and by that point, it seems that both Chase and Cassie feel might be worth the risk.
Bad Reputation is not an angsty read at all, which is exactly what I was hoping when I started the story. Because there’s a big enough stereotype present when it comes to bad boy hockey players, manufacturing more drama doesn’t make for a very entertaining read, at least in my opinion, because it takes away from the natural flow of the plot line as well as its authenticity. Edwards gives her readers Chase and Cassie’s story with the expectations that it fits more of the friends to lovers trope than it does the typical testosterone fueled antics of a professional athlete and because the game of hockey is only, for the most part, a backdrop for the story line, romance readers who don’t want to read another sports text that’s driven by the game instead of the relationship of the main characters need not worry and those of us who love the game and the way its role in the lives of the characters, there’s enough sports talk to keep us happy and patiently waiting for more of Edwards hockey stars.
Nicole Edwards is known for her steamy scenes and she holds true to those standards in Chase and Cassie’s story, and what I find most interesting about their insane chemistry in the bedroom is that when they start up this ‘connection’ between them, the physical is what they hold onto so no other feelings can intertwine with what’s supposed to be seen as a ‘temporary fix,’ but it’s made abundantly clear that perhaps Chase and Cassie’s families were right about them from the very beginning, even if it took some interesting steps to get to that realization.
I enjoyed the first book in Edwards’ new series, The Bad Boys of Sports, and with the introduction of a number of players/characters throughout Bad Reputation, I’m interested to see who Edwards puts in the game of love next!
4 Poison Apples