Friday, May 10, 2013

Review: Trying to Score by Toni Aleo

Trying to Score (Assassins #2)
In a captivating novel of second chances and healing hearts, the newest member of the Nashville Assassins pulls a power play to make things right with the one that got away.
Fallon Parker’s dream has always been to turn her family’s wine company into a runaway success and eventually start a cellar of her own. Since graduating from college, she has worked relentlessly to make that dream a reality, especially after taking a chance on love—and losing. By the time Fallon becomes an official sponsor of the Nashville Assassins, she feels like all her hard work is finally paying off. And then the man who broke her heart skates back into her life.

On the ice, Lucas Brooks is the NHL’s leading scorer—at least when he’s not in the box. Off the ice, he’s a mess, with all his anger and misery bottled up inside. He threw away the most important person in his life and has regretted it ever since. But when Lucas returns to Nashville in a trade, he’s determined to convince Fallon that he’s a changed man. The attraction is still there. The tension is electrifying. But the odds are stacked against them—especially after Lucas finds out that Fallon has been keeping a devastating secret.
Publisher: Loveswept
Publication Date: April 23, 2013
Kat's Review
I've said it before and I'll say it again: I'm not a huge fan of Romance covers.  Most are kind of cheesy.  Now that that's out of the way, let's move on to the book.
I'm a sucker for all things sports related, and romance novels are no exception.  Since we're smack in the middle of the NHL playoffs, this seemed like the perfect book to read.  The author of this series is a hockey fan, which makes me happy because she knows what she's writing about.  This is a book about coming to terms with the mistakes of the past.  Lucas and Fallon are thrown together after years apart when Lucas is traded to the team Fallon works closely with.  Despite his best efforts to win her back after making the mistake of cheating on her all those years ago, Fallon is determined to keep distance between them.
While I figured out the secret Fallon was keeping pretty early on, it's not the only secret between the two.  Lucas had been living a secret life when they were together, one that he's worked hard to overcome.  When Lucas discovers Fallon's secret, it just adds another layer of complications to their already tense relationship. 
This was a pretty good read.  Fallon bugged me a bit after a while, though.  I thought she was too stubborn, and pretty unwilling to forgive considering the magnitude of the secret that she kept for so many years.  The issues were adult issues, and the characters led lives independent of each other, something that is often missing from romance novels.  This novel has a great cast of supporting characters as well that lend some depth to the story and help move the plot along. 
One thing I particularly enjoyed was the strength of the female characters.  The hockey team has a female boss who takes no crap from anybody, while Fallon is a single mom who raises her son with the help of her sister and is still a successful businesswoman.  The men are multi-dimensional as well, avoiding many of the usual stereotypes. 
Rating: A Good Read
I'm going on vacation shortly, and this book would make a perfect beach read.  The story is definitely a romance, but it has more depth to it than just the romantic element.  It's about two people growing up and finding themselves before they can find each other again.  It's about adult decisions and adult responsibilities, and above all, the ability to forgive yourself and others. 

I received a complimentary copy of this title from NetGalley & the publisher in return for an honest review.


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