Title: Alex (A Cold Fury Hockey Novel)
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Published Date: October 14, 2014
Arc copy provided by NetGalley
Hockey star Alexander Crossman has a reputation as a cold-hearted player on and off the rink. Pushed into the sport by an alcoholic father, Alex isn’t afraid to give fans the proverbial middle finger, relishing his role as the MVP they love to hate. Management, however, isn’t so amused. Now Alex has a choice: fix his public image through community service or ride the bench. But Alex refuses to be molded into the Carolina Cold Fury poster boy . . . not even by a tempting redhead with killer curves.
As a social worker, Sutton Price is accustomed to difficult people—like Alex, who’s been assigned to help her create a drug-abuse awareness program for at-risk youth as part of the team’s effort to clean up his image. What she doesn’t expect is the arrogant smirk from his perfect lips to stir her most heated fantasies. But Sutton isn’t one to cross professional boundaries—and besides, Alex doesn’t do relationships . . . or does he? The more she sees behind Alex’s bad-boy façade, the more Sutton craves the man she uncovers.
You don't have to be a fan of hockey to enjoy this book. Alex Crossman is a blue eyed devil. His attitude is what he's best known for often winning him the MVP (Most valuable Prick) award at the games. His skills makes him one of the best players but the team Managers demand more from him. They no longer intend to tolerate his shitastic personality. With hopes to improve his fan popularity they force him into working on an anti-drug compaign for at risk youth. The fact that Alex seems to have a soft spot for kids who have difficult home lives makes you want to give him a chance to be your book boyfriend.
Sutton Price may be young at only 22 to be heading up project of such importance but she is motivated and specially qualified for the job. She suffered from physical abuse at the hands of her father who was addicted to heroine until she was nine years old. It was a school teacher that reached out and helped her and her mother get away from the toxic situation. She's now inspired and dedicated to be there for kids that may need that same kind of help.
Alex walks into the Crisis Center ready to work. He was not ready for the man in charge to be a beautiful woman. Sutton (love that name) is just as shocked. She has never been a hockey fan and wasn't expecting Alex to be so incredibly gorgeous. She has no problem though shooting him down when he asks her to come home with him for dinner. Alex is instantly intrigued.
It doesn't take long for them to give into to their mutual attraction. They both recognize they have a lot in common as far as their childhoods being marred by an abusive parent but Sutton is more of an open book. Alex hides his past and lets it darken his mood and destroy any joy that would come from playing hockey. He couldn't have found a more perfect woman to fall for. Sutton understands him more than he understands himself because of their common past. She gives him time and patience to share the things he feels give him the right to be an asshole. With a father that always made him feel like a worthless failure, Alex doesn't expect to be any more than that. He believes from the beginning that a relationship with Sutton will end in him hurting her but he can't deny himself the happiness she brings him. The more time they spend together the more he begins to enjoy the game. He even starts to interact more with his teammates. Alex recognizes just how special Sutton is but ultimately uses his past as an excuse to end their relationship and blames Sutton for causing him to loose focus on the game.
One of my favorite characters, Garrett, comes to the rescue. He is one of Alex's teammates that has become one of his closest friends. He steps in and helps Alex see the error of his ways. As hurt as Sutton was when Alex broke up with her she still loves him. I love what he does to win her back. It was another great read from Bennett. I really hope she's working on Garrett's story next.
About the Author:
USA Today Best-Selling author, Sawyer Bennett, is a snarky southern woman and reformed trial lawyer who decided to finally start putting on paper all of the stories that were floating in her head. She is married to a mobster (well, a market researcher) and they have two big, furry dogs who hog the bed. Sawyer would like to report she doesn't have many weaknesses but can be bribed with a nominal amount of milk chocolate.