The Machine by Stephanie Julian is available now!
He’s cool as ice and hot AF…
He’s cool as ice and hot AF.
Jake Mozik has fought his way back from a possible career-ending injury and has returned to the Redtails focused and ready to reclaim his former glory as half of the best defensive duo in the league. But his attraction to the fierce Faith is unexpected and distracting.
Faith doesn’t usually fall for overly confident, uber sexy jocks. But when she does, apparently she falls pretty damn hard. Jake is so not her type. Or so she thinks. Until he shows up to volunteer at the alternative school where she works and she sees a different side of the normally cocky athlete. He’s kind and patient and— Damn it, she is not falling for this guy. She’s rebuilding her life after a near-fatal accident and there’s no room for a man.
Jake is determined to make room in Faith’s life. And once he sets his mind on something, he doesn’t let go until he gets what he wants. And he wants it all…
I know I’m quite a bit late when it comes to Stephanie Julian’s Redtails Hockey series since this is my first read and it’s the 7th story, but I’m a huge fan of sports romance, so I thought I’d take a chance and check out the newest release in the series, The Machine.
And I’m happy to say that I didn’t feel at all lost in reading Jake Mozik and Faith Donovan’s story, and I’m sure that part of the reason I didn’t find it difficult to start so far into the series is because there’s not much ice time in The Machine; Jake Mozik is rehabbing after suffering a near career-ending injury, prohibiting him from returning to the Redtails until he gets the all clear from the team doctor and the person in charge of his physical therapy.
Many people, including the heroine, Faith Donovan, see Jake as an arrogant jock, but he’s more than people’s first impression of him, and that becomes clear when Jake and Faith start spending time together and it’s during those initial moments that readers see who Jake truly is and what he’s willing to do, not just to get back on the ice, but also to prove to Faith that he’s work the risk.
I like that Stephanie Julian establishes a foundation between Jake and Faith, even if it’s just seeing one another in passing, before they become friends and Jake works on standing permanently by Faith’s side.
Faith’s a fighter, and it’s her strength, her dedication, and her never give up attitude that allows her to beat the odds when it her doctors told her that she would never walk again after a horrific car accident. And I feel that Jake and Faith’s stubbornness is something that bonds them together, helping to make all of the work they have both done to recover from their injuries a defining moment in their lives.
Determination and courage are two characteristics that Jake and Faith have in common, and Jake builds upon that as he works his way into Faith’s life and into her heart, and while any kind of intimacy between them is built up to, their connection is solidified the moment Faith realizes who Jake is beneath his cocky athlete demeanor, proving there are just as many layers of his personalty as there are for her.
I definitely enjoyed my first Stephanie Julian sports romance, and I can’t wait to meet more of the Redtails’ players.
4 Poison Apples
About the Author
Stephanie Julian is a New York Times and USA Today best seller who writes sophisticated, sultry romance for adventurous readers.
Her books include sexy heroes (sometimes two!), smart heroines and emotionally engaging love stories. Her series include the best-selling Salon Games, Indecent and Magical Seduction.
Stephanie is a slow runner, a reluctant cook, a lover of all things Joss, JJ and Disney. She’s happily married to a Springsteen fanatic and is the mother of two sons who introduced her to the joys of Slipknot, Warped Tour and never-ending headaches.
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