Thursday, February 15, 2018

Shot on Gold by Jaci Burton

In the new Play-by-Play novel by the New York Times bestselling author of The Final Score, opposites attract when a figure skater and hockey player lace up their skates—and go for the gold...

Will "Mad Dog" Madigan is making his second trip to the Winter Olympics, and he couldn't be happier. Hockey is his life and playing for the U.S. team is a privilege. Then he meets U.S. figure skater Amber Sloane. She's beautiful, ambitious and driven--everything Will desires in a woman. He would love to show Amber how hot life off the ice can be.

Amber has skated her entire life, sacrificing everything in the hopes of one day winning gold. Now she's competing for the third and final time. She intends to win, and nothing's going to get in her way--until she meets Will. He's an irresistible charmer, and before long Amber is wondering if this sexy hockey player is the perfect guy to show her some moves outside the rink.

But after all the medals have been awarded, Will and Amber will have to decide if what they have together is just a fling or a real shot at true love.

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Book 14
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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Mary Jo☆☆☆☆
Often, two characters meet and fall into insta-love. Not these two. They talk, they trade witty barbs, and think about what they are going to do. That's not to say these characters don't hop into bed, they do, but it’s the thought processes that get them there that made this story for me.

Will "Mad Dog" Madigan is at his second Olympic games, eager to bring home the gold for the US hockey team. Amber Sloane is at her third and final Olympics, hoping against hope that she will bring home the hold in women's figure skating.

Amber is a loner, not by choice, but by circumstance. Her mother's controlling attitude about her career has left her lonely and virtually friendless. At these games, she's once again partnered with Lisa as her roommate, who's bound and determined to bring Amber out of her shell. On her first night at the Village, Amber meets Will and is amazed that his handsome guy wants to talk to her. Will thinks Amber is beautiful and great to talk to. They click.

As the games begin, so does a relationship between Amber and Will. Neither knowing how the games or the passion will end, but each knowing that their lives will never be the same once the closing ceremonies come to a close.

This is a sweet story about a romance that blossoms between a hockey player and a figure skater at the Winter Olympics.

The storyline will be familiar to fans of sports romance – both Will and Amber face huge pressure to secure a gold medal. Amber is a fairly stereotypical figure skater. She lives in the shadow of a pushy mother and a domineering coach and she has never been able to focus on anything but skating. Honestly, her story is so predictable I felt like I’d read it before.

Similarly, Will is determined to secure the gold medal that has eluded him at previous Olympics. A professional hockey player, he finds himself intrigued by the ice princess he can’t quite win over.

This is a fun story with some sports action to keep it exciting. The romance is sweet, there is some steam but there isn’t much that is either memorable or original about the book. I enjoyed it as an easy beach read.

This is the first book I’ve read in this series and it definitely stands alone – I didn’t realise this was part of a series until I sat down to review it.

Avid Reader☆☆☆☆
M/F YA-type of Romance

Will and Amber are not your typical romance couple. Will is excited to be back in the Olympics. He knows that playing hard and winning a gold is the ultimate goal and doing so alongside his fellow teammates is just icing on the cake. While he is very sociable and knows how to have a good time with his fellow Olympians, when he sees Amber, his priorities of hooking up with someone for the games shift a little.

Amber has lived a very sheltered life. She has known only skating. While her mom is her manager, Amber knows that living in the Olympic village is her break from her mom and the constant scrutiny she is used to. When she meets Will, she takes a leap and comes on to him with the hope that she will leave these games, her last, no longer a virgin.

This book had a very young adult feel to it. Despite the characters being in their early to mid-twenties, the characters’ behaviors, and their life experience, these are very stunted adults.

Will and Amber begin their relationship and learn a lot about each other. Will encourages Amber to make up her own mind and tries very hard not to judge her and her parents’ relationship. Amber learns that having friends and being nice to her fellow skaters is amazing and not at all the distraction that her mom thinks it will be.

Will learns that sometimes love is worth the risk and Amber learns that standing up to her mom is definitely what she needed to do.

This is a very typical romance in that there are steamy encounters, some trust issues and overall, a couple who must decide if their relationship is worth fighting for.

This was just an okay read for me, I didn't get sucked into it like I have the previous books. Amber and Will’s story is good, but I just didn't feel a connection between the two and it was almost awkward to read about them.

Amber Sloane is figure skater who has reached the age of retirement but wants to win one gold before hanging up her skates. Since she's focused every moment of her entire life on figure skating, she's never had a chance to really live and definitely never had a chance to date which equals a 24-year-old virgin who just wants it to be done with. Being at the Winter Olympics is the perfect time to punch that card as her overbearing mother isn't allowed into the Village. Enter the gorgeous hockey god, Will. Will loves hockey, family, and friends. In that order and he's intrigued by Amber, especially when she offers up her virginity to him.

I feel as though this book focused more on Amber just wanting to "get it over with" then the point where she gets past that and falls for Will. I just didn't feel like they belonged together at the end. There are definitely a lot of steamy scenes in this book though, so if you like that, I’d say this is the book for you!

P.S. The cover is a solid five stars!

This book is perfectly timed as the Winter Olympics start tomorrow. For me, they will be all the richer for having read this book. Firstly, undoubtedly, because I will be looking for romantic intrigue at the end of the ski run or after a hockey match. And I shall be hoping that in their off time, they all have friends and fellow competitors to hang out with and enjoy the atmosphere. And secondly, I will be focusing on the confidence and determination shown by those who truly believe in themselves and have given everything to show the world, on one day in their lives, they are worthy of gold.

As a huge fan of sports romances, I count Ms. Burton and this series as one of the most reliable for a guaranteed good read. This was a good addition to the series. Will is such a lovely lead, with wonderful manners and a clear appreciation for the dedication and devotion that Amber has paid to her sport. I love that he is understanding, kind, and also sexy as ever. He does Amber's self-esteem with regards to sex no harm at all, and she blossoms with the attention and feelings he shows her.

There are some great side characters too, who move the story on, are supportive, fair minded, and encouraging. Even Amber's parents get the chance to show themselves in a better light! Ms Burton has once again given a full picture, all the better for us to be invested in the outcome of the book.

If you enjoy a sports romance with two well matched, competitive, intelligent, and good people, then this is an obvious book to pick up and enjoy.

Jaci Burton is the USA Today and New York Times bestselling author of the Play-by-Play series, including Unexpected Rush, All Wound Up, Quarterback Draw, Straddling the Line, Melting the Ice, and One Sweet Ride, and the Hope series, including Don’t Let Go, Make Me Stay, Love After All, Hope Burns, Hope Ignites, and Hope Flames.

Connect with Jaci

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Berkley Romance

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Shot on Gold (Play-by-Play #14) by Jaci Burton to read and review.

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