Friday, May 6, 2022

The Long Game by Rachel Reid

To the world, they are rivals… But to each other, they are everything.

The sequel is finally here! Shane and Ilya’s story, first seen in Heated Rivalry, continues in this long-awaited hockey romance from Rachel Reid.

To the world they are rivals, but to each other they are everything.

Ten years.

That’s how long Shane Hollander and Ilya Rozanov have been seeing each other. How long they’ve been keeping their relationship a secret. From friends, from family… from the league. If Shane wants to stay at the top of his game, what he and Ilya share has to remain secret. He loves Ilya, but what if going public ruins everything?

Ilya is sick of secrets. Shane has gotten so good at hiding his feelings, sometimes Ilya questions if they even exist. The closeness, the intimacy, even the risk that would come with being open about their relationship… Ilya wants it all.

It’s time for them to decide what’s most important—hockey or love.

It’s time to make a call.

Don’t miss our reviews of the rest of the Game Changers series!
For book one, Game Changer, click HERE.
For book two, Heated Rivalry, click HERE.
For book three, Tough Guy, click HERE.
For book four, Common Goal, click HERE.
For book five, Role Model, click HERE.


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The Long Game by Rachel Reid

Book 6
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
Apple Books  ~  B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  Kobo
Audiobook (US)  ~  Paperback (US)
Carina Press (HQN)




Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

The Long Game is the sixth installment in the Game Changers series. It absolutely cannot be read as a standalone or out of series order, paralleling events in all the previous novels, as well as being the sequel to Heated Rivalry.

Hands down, Ilya Rozanov is my all-time favorite character. A big, lazy cat, paw batting at anyone who comes close. Playful. Taunting. Hunting. Teasing. But he keeps his claws sheathed.

My favorite scene-stealer during the entirety of the series, stole the show from Shane during their novel as well. Forever drawing the best and worst out of past and future narrators. A biting dig in his broken English meant to inspire, what it inspired is up to the person who received the comment, even if they take it in a different way than Ilya meant—Ilya likes it that way, being purposefully misunderstood, cryptic and baiting.

Ilya Rozanov has a heart of gold, even if he doesn't reveal it often. Empathetic and sympathetic, caring and kind, the type of leader that draws the best out of his failing team. More so, Ilya is the type of person who pushes others to make changes, then allows them to take the credit.

All the way back to when they were minor children, fighting tooth and nail to be the best of the best, Ilya and Shane have been drawn to one another. Their rivalry is legendary. Their connection is soul deep. Their romance spans a decade. As they sit back and watch player after player reach for their happily ever after. Waiting like a patient cat has nothing to do with cowardice – Shane and Ilya are legendary, fearing they would not receive the same reaction as their fellow hockey players.

Shane believes they're on the same page, living a life in secret. With the backing of his family, his closest friends, even a few of his teammates, Shane has a comfortable life with a full support system to shelter him from the lonely stretches without Ilya.

Then there is Ilya, who only has Shane. Alone in this world. Making sacrifices to be near Shane, seeing Shane's family as his only family. Set apart from his team. Unable to make friends when he's hiding such a large secret. Ilya feels isolated and alone, a terrifying place to be when depression is etched on his DNA.

I was terrified the entire time I was reading, fearing the worst. Some petty miscommunication that derails their strong relationship. But Reid did not do us dirty like that. Ilya and Shane do each other proud, Reid does her readers proud, giving us tooth decaying sweetness, heart-clenching emotion, lip-splitting humor, smothering us beneath a mountain of feels.

This series tops my favorite, and not just in M/M Romance or in the sports subgenre. Reread worthy. The Long Game was utterly satisfying, pure perfection. I can't recommend it enough. I look forward to Ilya stealing more scenes in future installments (fingers crossed the series never ends).

This is the sixth book in the series – and I have loved them all! I highly recommend that you read them in order – at the very least you should read Heated Rivalry where these two delicious men first come together. We see them ten years after they first get together, and can only hope that they finally get to be together all the time.

I find both the guys engaging, but Ilya is my favourite because he is the one who has given up a huge amount to be close to Shane. He is a good leader and gets the chance to bring his team up thanks to some new heart being injected into the club. He is so patient and calm when Shane is doing so well, and yet he chose love over everything. He has also become important to Shane's family, and I loved that he gained a family as well as a lover, as he completely deserved one.

I keep thinking of lovely bits, dramatic bits, and hurtful bits, and I really don't think I should share any of it, as you need to get the full goodness of it straight from the book. I cannot recommend it enough – and if you have time to read Heated Rivalry first, you will get the very best of stories all in one go. Enjoy!

I was thrilled to be back with Ilya and Shane, my favorite couple, from the Game Changers series. It is 10 years since the men met and they are now together in a committed relationship that only a very select few people know about.

Ilya has changed teams and moved to Canada to be closer to Shane, but with them both playing hockey at different clubs, finding time to be together during the hockey season is a struggle and it is starting to be an issue, Both men want to be together more and Ilya in particular is struggling with keeping his love for Shane a secret. Their journey in this story has some ups and downs but their love for each other never wavers.

I enjoyed spending time with the men both in and outside the rink. They are more than just hockey players. I particularly loved exploring Ilya’s mental health issues and what it is like to be a sportsman who went from playing from one of the top teams to one of the bottom teams. Part of the timeline for The Long Game runs concurrently with other books in this series, so I was familiar with a few of the events that took place. I really liked seeing Ilya’s friendship with Harris and Troy from Ilya’s point of view and seeing how the aeroplane troubles affected Ilya and Shane.

I wallowed in The Long Game. I loved everything about it. There are good times as well as bad times. I laughed, I cried, and I was completely swept up in the romance. I just couldn’t get enough of Shane and Ilya and writing this review is making me want to go back and read their story right from the very beginning. A huge thank you to Rachel Reid for giving us more time with Shane and Ilya. They are one of my favorite romance couples ever!



Author Bio

RACHEL REID has always lived in Nova Scotia, Canada, and will likely continue to do so. She has two boring degrees and two interesting sons. She has been a hockey fan since childhood, but sadly never made it to the NHL herself. She enjoys books about hot men doing hot things, and cool ladies being awesome.

Connect with Rachel Reid

Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads



Carina Press.

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of The Long Game (Game Changers #6) by Rachel Reid to read and review.

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