Review: Hooked by Brenda Rothert

Title: Hooked
Author: Brenda Rothert
Series: standalone
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance

From the author of the On the Line and Fire on Ice hockey romance series comes a sultry novel featuring a brooding NHL player whoโ€™s hell on skatesโ€”and the no-nonsense woman who forces him to clean up his act.

Miranda: Even though Iโ€™m broke, putting myself through college, and working two jobs, Iโ€™m trying to make the best of it. Meanwhile, Jake Birch, hockeyโ€™s hottest bad boy, lives in a luxury hotel in downtown Chicagoโ€”and still complains about every little thing in his penthouse. But after I tell him off, instead of getting me fired, Jake requests me as his personal housekeeper. Then he starts flirting with me. Only Iโ€™m not flirting back . . . at least, Iโ€™m trying not to. Did I mention that heโ€™s hockeyโ€™s hottest bad boy?

Jake: Iโ€™ve met the best woman at the worst possible time. Miranda is the fire to my iceโ€”a sexy, charmingly candid spark who breaks down my walls and reminds me what itโ€™s like to feel again. But Iโ€™m being forced to date my team ownerโ€™s daughter to keep my job, so I canโ€™t be caught with Miranda. Still, weโ€™re getting closerโ€”until Miranda finds out about my โ€œgirlfriend.โ€ And thatโ€™s not the only secret Iโ€™ve been keeping. But Mirandaโ€™s the one I want . . . even if she doesnโ€™t believe me.

My Review:
A more authentic version of “Maid in Manhattan” set within a sexy sports world with fantastic character development and tons of “aww” moments, Hooked by Brenda Rothert is one of my new fav reads!

This is my third Rothert read and it didn’t fail to deliver. I’ve now come to associate this author with superb writing, complex characterization, and swoon-worthy heartwarming romance that ticks all the right boxes. Devoured it in less than twenty-four hours and that is always the sign of a great book.

I have so many good feels right now after reading this book.

Jake is a total ass at the start of this book and even though it was funny it was on the wrong side of funny. He was soooo into himself but as the story progressed and I witnessed his neurosis and how he needs control/structure to cope with stress, I knew there was more to this man than my initial impression. As the layers came away, and I understood what drove his behavior, my heart ached for him and I fell in love with him right along with Miranda.

Miranda is AWESOME. I loved her character. She wasn’t fazed by his wealth or his fame and she didn’t hesitate to call him out on his bullshit. She wouldn’t take his money either despite the fact that she didn’t have two pennies to rub together. She had her pride, tons of self-worth, and a strong work ethic, and I simply adored her. She never moaned about her lot in life; she just got on with things.

As they got closer and learned to trust one another, he gradually opened up to her and with her love and support was able to confront his demons and deal with them head-on.

Hailey was clearly in need of help and I’m glad she got it in the end. I kept waiting for that bombshell to drop and for things to go completely south and I adored how the author dealt with this part of the plot. It would have been very easy to go the angsty-dramatic path but, instead, she maintained character consistency and both dealt with the situation head-on and with maturity, and I could’ve cried. It was so refreshingly simple in the solution but perfect.

The sex scenes weren’t overly graphic but there was plenty of heat and the chemistry was believable.

I enjoy reading sports romances and sometimes authors can get overly descriptive with the sports angle which tends to pull me out of the story. Not this book. Brenda got the balance right.

The writing is exemplary as usual, with great editing and consistent pacing and it just flowed beautifully.

I do not have a single criticism of this book. I loved it completely. Now, I really want to check out her other hockey series!

In summary, this was a really uplifting positive love story and one I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend to fans of well written contemporary sports romance.

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