Book Review: In the Penalty Box

Title: In the Penalty Box

Authors: Lynn Rush & Kelly Anne Blount

Pub. Date: January 5, 2021    

Pages: 400

Pub: Entangled: Teen

Genre: YA Contemporary Romance

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

The Cutting Edge meets Friday Night Lights in a sizzling new hockey romance from bestselling authors Kelly Anne Blount and Lynn Rush.

Figure skating was supposed to be my whole world. But one unlucky injury and now I’m down…but I’m definitely not out. I just need to rehab—a boatload of rehab—and who’d have thought I could do it on the boys’ hockey team?

Of course, the infuriatingly hot captain of the team seems to think I’m nothing but sequins and twirls. What’s a girl to do but put him in his place? Game on.

Hockey is my whole world. I’ve worked my tail off getting my team in a position to win the championships—hopefully in front of major college scouts, too—so what’s a guy to do when a figure skater ends up as our new goalie?

Of course, the distractingly sexy skater thinks I’m nothing but a testosterone-laced competitive streak. And surely she’s only biding her time to heal, then she’s gone. Game over.

This will be a spoiler free review. Thank you to NetGalley and Entangled: Teen for providing a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. I loved this book, it kept me up reading and I couldn’t put down. It was such a cute romcom and I highly recommend it.

I’m in such a romcom mood, and this book is part of the reason why. I initially requested this because it seemed wintery and just adorable. I’m a sucker for a fluffy romcom. I’ve been hitting the high fantasy really hard lately and I just wanted some lighter, fluff books and In the Penalty Box definitely delivers. It also gave me light Spinning Out vibes and I’m still pissed that Netflix cancelled that show, so this filled that hole in my life.

I would 100% honestly read a whole series based on these characters. Legit just go down the line of hockey players and give me their stories, them falling in love. I fell in love with just about all of them as they slipped into *almost* big brother roles towards Willow.

Speaking of Willow – fucking badass over here! I loved her. Loved her dedication, willingness to put people in their places and go after her dream. Did I love it when shit hit the fan and things started falling apart, nope. My heart broke, but I get why she does what she does. You can’t live with “what if’s” in her situation. It would have eaten her alive.

Brodie. Sigh, I’m in love. I might need to go find the closest ice rink. I didn’t think I’d ever care about hockey, but this book had me utterly enamored. Maybe I’m just missing people, but I’d totally take Willow’s place to be surrounded by the team. I need myself a Brodie, and let’s talk about the emotional vulnerability! Ugh, I love me some male characters that actually express emotions and aren’t ashamed. I loved how he came across grown up but had these heartfelt (and heartbreaking) moments of just pure broken emotion. He turned into a kid in those moments and I just wanted to hug him and tell him that things would get better.

Ultimately, I enjoyed this book, the writing was decent, kept you engaged and emotionally involved. The pacing was good – had me turning the page continuously and wrecking my sleep schedule, but that’s okay. You care for the characters, fall for them, and go on this journey with them. The attraction Brodie and Willow feel for each other goes further than just physical, and it’s the things that make them up that draw them together.

I loved this book and already pre-ordered my copy. I cannot wait for it to arrive. Lynn and Kelly wrote an amazing book and I can’t wait to shove it at all my friends. I want them to read it so I can talk about it. And like I said, I would gladly read a whole interconnected series where each of the teammates fall in love. I would devour those books. Especially if there was one about Preach. I loved him and thought his friendship with Jessa was wonderful. Their whole arrangement was just perfect.

You should definitely pick this book up if you’re in a romco/sports romance mood!

4 thoughts on “Book Review: In the Penalty Box

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