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Title: Winter BallMy Review:
Author: Amy Lane
Series: Winter Ball #1
Published by: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: December 25th 2015
Format: Kindle Book
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Through a miserable adolescence and a lonely adulthood, Skipper Keith has dreamed of nothing but family. The closest he gets is the rec league soccer team he coaches after work—and his star player and best friend, Richie Scoggins.
One brisk night in late October, a postpractice convo in Richie’s car turns into a sexual encounter neither of them expected—nor want to forget. Soon Skip and Richie are living for the weekends and their winter league soccer games—and the games they enjoy off the field. Through broken noses, holiday decorating, and the killer flu, they learn more about each other than they ever dreamed possible. Every new discovery takes them further beyond the boundaries of the soccer field and into the infinite possibilities of the best relationship of Skipper’s life.
Skipper can’t dream of a better family than Richie—but Richie’s got real family entanglements he can’t shake off. Skipper needs to convince Richie to stay with him beyond winter ball so the relationship they started on the field might become their happy future in real life!
3.5 stars — I enjoyed this one, but to be truthful it just made me want to reread The Locker Room (which I did…review coming soon). I liked both Skipper and Richie, but they did feel a bit young…but that could be just the nature of these two characters. They did feel authentic though, that wasn’t the problem. It was an interesting m/m story, because unlike so many that I read, it wasn’t a gay for you book, but a book about two gay guys that just took longer to figure themselves out and accept their sexuality. And I really believe that happens in real life, some people just don’t let their brains acknowledge what their…well, brain/body/heart is telling them.
Skip and Richie were really cute together, you really felt the love between them. I love friends to lovers story, and you really felt their friendship as well as their desire for more. And they were good for each other too. They were both so damaged, but they made a family between the two of them…they gave each other the kind of family they had both been seeking.
Skipper was seriously just adorable, I loved his personality and his shyness and his inability to see his greatness and what he brings to all his soccer guys as their coach. He’s definitely a “take care of people” kind of guy. I was less enamoured with Richie, but that was a me thing. He was such a strange personality, very hyper almost. And I guess because it was all from Skip’s POV, sometimes I was annoyed with how Richie wasn’t seeing how his choices were affecting Skip, even as I understood why he was making them. Honestly, that’s really just something to be mad at the author for…making her characters struggle and shiznit. 😛
This one wasn’t always the sexiest…not that they didn’t have fabulous chemistry, but sometimes it was a bit more real and a bit less fantasy…I don’t really care to know about how awful ass sex smells, you know? 😛
There was a fantastic set of secondary characters in this one. In particular, I LOVED Carpenter!! He was a seriously great friend and really just added so much to the story. I loved how he was there for Skip. I also thought Mason was a funny addition, and the soccer boys were da bomb.
So yeah…not my fave from Ms. Lane, but still a great m/m!