(ARC) Fake Play (Atlanta Edge Hockey Romance Novel) by Carla Swafford

Fake Play (Atlanta Edge Hockey Romance Novel) by Carla Swafford
Connor Ellison, one of Atlanta Edge’s best wingers and biggest prankster, is given an ultimatum by the coaches and the PR department. He must stay married until the end of the run for the Cup or be available for trade.

Lily Jones wants nothing to do with the insane demand. But he convinces her the best decision is to play along. If they remain married and pretend to be in love, he offers to save her family’s ice rink from bankruptcy. Anyway, it’s only until the end of the hockey season. Then they can go their separate ways.

Easy-peasy. No way will they go to the finals. No way will they truly fall in love.

Thanks to Destiny Brown (Goodreads) and Carla Swafford, I received an Advanced Reading Copy of Ms. Swafford's latest novel in her Atlanta Edge Hockey Romance series, Fake Play, scheduled for release 30th June 2020. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Spoilers ahead.

I've never read any of Ms. Swafford's books, but being a fan of hockey player romance books, I was eager to read this book. Added in the accidentally married trope? Even more of a fan. The book moves very quickly, introducing us to Connor and Lily immediately, and their predicament, jumping straight in. There's a lot packed into this story from accidental marriage, difficult childhoods, difficult relationships with family, potential cheating in a relationship, pregnancy, death and more. There is a lot of ground covered in the 284 pages and there may be some topics that readers may find painful to go through.

Fake Play follows a somewhat standard romance format, flipping back and forth between the main characters views, and it does work. I'll confess I wasn't that enamoured with Connor, we have a backstory of him which doesn't sound that appealing and then quickly changing when he meets and marries Lily.  I felt there was some rapid character change without development for him, and it left a bit of a gap noting the sudden change. I do find Lily on the other hand to be a quite likeable character, trying her best for her family and the relationship with Connor, and cheering her on.

To the writing itself, I did find myself intrigued in the plot and wanted to keep going, finishing it in one night. I did find however that sometimes the writing was a little stilted and phrasing awkward, pulling me out of the mostly smooth writing flow. This book is scheduled for release at the end of the month however, and these are small edits that can be easily adjusted if required.

As mentioned above, there are some topics in here that aren't smooth and easy-going, including a parental death which is hard to read. It is well-written, but something that this reader just doesn't really like to read. Added into the amount of other topics that the author has included in this plotline, sometimes things aren't really unpacked fully, which can leave a reader wanting more.

Overall, an interesting plotline and an enjoyable (if slightly sad) read.

Rating: 3/5

Click here to purchase from Amazon, available 30th June.

Have you read this book? Drop us your thoughts in a comment!


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