Author: Avon Gale
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages/Word Count: 240 Pages
At a Glance: Pick this one up, guys. I promise you will laugh, you will swoon, you will learn about hockey, and you will be so glad you read it.
Reviewed By: Jules
Blurb: Drafted to play for the Jacksonville Sea Storm, an NHL affiliate, twenty-year-old Lane Courtnall’s future looks bright, apart from the awkwardness he feels as a gay man playing on a minor league hockey team. He’s put his foot in his mouth a few times and alienated his teammates. Then, during a rivalry game, Lane throws off his gloves against Jared Shore, enforcer for the Savannah Renegades. It’s a strange way to begin a relationship.
Jared’s been playing minor league hockey for most of his career. He’s bisexual and doesn’t care if anyone knows. But he’s determined to avoid another love affair after the last one left him devastated. Out of nowhere a one-nighter with rookie Lane Courtnall gives him second thoughts. Lane reminds Jared why he loves the game and why love might be worth the risk. In turn, Jared hopes to show Lane how to be comfortable with himself on and off the ice. But they’re at different points in their careers, and both men will have to decide what they value most.
Review: This book was an absolute delight. I adored – absolutely ADORED Lane. And Lane and Jared. And Zoe. And Lane and Zoe. Hell, I adored the whole damn lot of them! Honestly, there wasn’t a single thing not to like about Breakaway. The characters are fresh, fun, and hilarious. The dialogue is sharp and just so perfect for all of them. And, the hockey! Gah! Who knew I’d like hockey this much? It’s awesome! It’s fantastic to read about something that is clearly a passion for the author, and Avon Gale definitely knows her stuff.
Lane Courtnall is something else. He’s Canadian, first of all. Which should explain many things about him as far as he’s concerned. He’s bad at feelings and at communication in general. In fact, his poor social skills are what have landed him in trouble starting on page one, and led him to picking a fight with Jared Shore, a rival player in the ECHL. This book has one of the greatest first chapters I’ve read in forever. Gale drops us right into the thick of a game and the mess that is Lane, getting us into his head and setting the tone and pace for the entire novel.
Jared doesn’t know what to do with Lane initially. Or, even later for that matter. I love this quote, which so readily sums up what Jared must be thinking most of the time:
Lane took a breath, and Jared was charmed, turned on, and slightly shocked that Lane was actually a real person.
That’s how I feel about Lane as well. He is five hundred kinds of awesome, wrapped up in a kind, sexy, quirky package. His unabashed love and respect for the game, as well as his wonder at just, well…everything, will have you falling in love with every Maple-Leaf-loving ounce of him.
I loved Jared a stupid amount, too. His background and connection to hockey was so different from Lane’s; his power on the ice came entirely from within himself. I was rooting for him individually, as well as rooting for him and Lane together. Watching everything unfold for the two of them made me giddy.
Pick this one up, guys. I promise you will laugh, you will swoon, you will learn about hockey, and you will be so glad you read it. Breakaway is the first in Avon Gale’s new Scoring Chances series, and I am all in. I can’t wait to dig right in to Riley and Ethan’s story next! Bring on more hockey boys!
You can buy Breakaway here: