Author: Stephani Hecht
Cover Artist: Martine Jardin
Rating: 2.5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 03/15/2012
Length: Novella (~ 15K-50K)
Genre: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance
Sometimes love really can conquer all
While growing up, Zimon always lived in his older brother’s shadow. While his sibling went on to join the military and came back a war hero, things grew even worse as Zimon’s life spiraled out of control, and he found himself in a dark place where he came close to losing his life.
When Zimon’s brother fell in love, all the rules changed in their once nice, neat life, and Zimon finds himself in the role of supporting his brother in his newest dream, opening and running the biggest hockey rink in the metro Detroit area. While Zimon had never envisioned his future being the manager at the front service desk of a rink, it beats working as a shot-boy at the gay club, so he jumps at the chance for the new job.
Bryce never imagined that, while at the height of his NHL career, he’d find himself becoming part owner of a rundown hockey rink. Yet that’s exactly what happens when a group of his friends get it in their crazy heads to start the new business. One day when he’s in town, he decides to check the place out. When he clashes with the bratty, yet cute, man running the front desk, Bryce is both annoyed and intrigued.
Will Zimon and Bryce ever be able to get over their differences? Or will the final buzzer sound before they find a way to happiness?
I was very disappointed with the way this story turned out. THere was so much potential here for Zimon and Bryce’s story to be great. In Playing the Point, the reader was able to see that he was not the shallow playboy he was presented to be in Nobel’s story. There was so much more to him that needed to be explored and developed. His relationship with his brother could have made for a great way to grow both men as individuals while showcasing the ways they were working to overcome their flaws. But because this story was so short and followed in the same design as the previous books, everything was only superficially touched on or hinted at and then ignored in favor of a quick and rushed love connection.
Even the love connection in this one felt over the top too easy and very rushed. I never understood why Bryce fell for Zimon in such a way that he would choose to retire from his career and come out. I liked the way he did love Zimon, but I never understood why it happened.
Finally, the thing that really upset me was the rushed and almost disrespectful way the author treated Zimon’s HIV status. It was presented in a cold unfeeling way in the last few pages of the story. Yes, the way Bryce pointed out that Zimon was not “dirty” and that he loved him anyway was great, but that was it. There was nothing more. There was no lead into this, it came out of the blue. There was no care given to Zimon’s emotional state and infact his emotions were barely touched on and almost just as quickly erased by Bryce’s declaration of love. Just that fast, his HIV status was OK and he was OK. This just didn’t work for me and ruined the whole story. I think I could have overlooked the rushed romance in favor of the sappy happy ending had this not been thrown in as an afterthought.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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