Saturday, August 3, 2019

Axel (Carolina Reapers #1) by Samantha Whiskey ~ Review

Axel (Carolina Reapers #1)Source: KindleUnlimited.

Axel (Carolina Reapers #1) by Samantha Whiskey

The NHL’s been at my door since I was 18.
But I’d never leave the Swedish Hockey League—
Not while raising my little brother.
But now he’s grown and the Carolina Reapers show up with my greatest weakness:
Langley Pierce, their new head of PR.

I’ve never been able to say no to her.
She’s fierce, independent, and the sexiest woman I’ve ever met.
She also has a stubborn streak wider than my entire country.

One comment from her smart mouth about never dating again, and I propose.

No, really, I actually propose:
A six-month marriage contract in exchange for signing with the Reapers.
I want to date this woman so badly that I’m going to marry her first.
I’ll use each day to show her how a queen should be treated.

Our wedding day started a countdown I’m powerless to stop,
And the faster the months fly, the harder I fall.
She’s sworn she’ll never choose a man over her career,
And I promised never to ask her to.
Until I’m forced to.

How can we move forward when we started this whole thing backwards?
If I can’t convince her this marriage is anything but fake—
The next document we sign will crush us both.

Welcome to the Carolina Reapers, Samantha Whiskey’s newest hockey series where the chill of the ice meets sultry southern nights.

I picked this one up for three reasons: 1. I had just finished reading Bound to the Battle God and had no idea what to do with myself (and I still don't know what to do with myself, in case you're wondering). 2. I saw people talking about Axel on Facebook and nothing draws me in quite like a bunch of people talking up some swoons. 3. The description was so, so promising! Unfortunately, this one didn't really score with me.

That's not to say Axel is a bad book. It's definitely not. But it's not an especially good one either. It It was solid brain candy, and I was interested enough to read the whole thing, but it was the kind of flat story where every single thing that happens is expected. There wasn't really anything in the book that took me by surprise or hooked me enough to be INVESTED instead of just interested.

The characters were great, though. Langley's self-respect, stubbornness, and determination were awesome. I'm glad she put herself and her goals and happiness first--and that she grew enough to realize when those things shifted. And man, I ADORE Axel. He's a total sweetheart. Patient and kind. Down to earth. I'm a fan.

Well, I'm a fan except for a certain point in the book where Axel...well. I don't think what happened with him was entirely in character. It kind of felt contrived for the sake of drama. In order to push the story in the direction it needed to go. Which I get it, because I expected it from the start, but I didn't appreciate where it took Axel's character.

The story is told from dual POV, which I loved. I was also a huge fan of the cast around to two MCs. The players on the Carolina Reapers were cool, and I am interested in getting to know them better in the series...or maybe checking out the books they were already in? While this book can stand alone, it's all definitely connected to more books somewhere, so I'll need to look into that maybe. And it was great how Langley had such great friends. And Axel's brother was cute.

Overall, while Axel wasn't a bad book by any means, it wasn't anything to write home about either. I enjoyed the characters, but the plot was predictable and somewhat contrived. I'm considering checking out more of the author's work, however!

3 stars - Sweet but unexciting.

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