The Body Checker
I’m the NHL’s toughest enforcer, the Body Checker, and I earned that title the hard way. I’m all about the game, a no attachment, no strings kind of guy, so when a puck bunny shows up at my door, shoves a pink bundle into my hands and drives off into the sunset, it turns my world upside down. I’m not cut out to be a family man. I know nothing about babies and I’m the last guy who should be taking care of one. But I do know someone who is equipped for the job—Quinn Reed, my best friend’s kid sister. Problem is, she kind of…hates me.
Jonah Long…a father? Move in and help take care of his daughter? Crazy as that sounds, I agree to the temporary arrangement, for the child’s sake. Problem is, living with the guy I’ve crushed on since forever, is messing with my body as well as my brain. And now, watching him grow as a man, seeing the bond between father and daughter build, I can’t help but want this family for myself. But we’re just playing house, and Jonah isn’t interested in making this ready-made family the real deal…right?
The Stick Handler
I’m known in the NHL as The Stick Handler, but according to a conversation I accidently overheard between my fiancé and her friend, I’m The Money Maker, and marrying me will get her daddy—who just happens to own the hockey team I play for—off her back and secure her financial future, whether the marriage lasts or not. Now, call me a prick for canceling our Valentine’ wedding at the eleventh hour, but when she threatens to ruin my career and reputation, it’s the icing on the uncut wedding cake. She gives me a week to reconsider, and I take it—at the Italian resort booked for the honeymoon that will never be, and there’s no one I’d rather take with me than Katee, the girl who has held a special place in my heart since forever. When the concierge mistakes her for the bride, we go with it. Only problem is, the place reeks of romance and keeping my hands to myself might prove to be the toughest game I’ve ever played.
A honeymoon in Italy and I’m not the bride? How can I say no when Luke needs a shoulder to cry on, and no matter what, I’ll always be there for him. The problem is, none of my imaginary kisses come close to the reality of Luke’s mouth on mine, even if it’s just for show, and it’s going to take more space than a king-size bed provides to keep things in the friend zone. I’m weak, I admit it, but this is Luke, and the more we pretend, the more real it feels. Will our make-believe honeymoon be the end of a lifelong friendship? Will returning home mean the end of his career, or the beginning of something so much more?
My only goal is to heal from this concussion and get back on the ice—until Nina Callaghan shows up at my door asking for hockey lessons. She’s my best friend’s kid sister, which puts her in the hands-off zone, so I used to tease her without mercy—the ballerina on ice—until a knee injury grounded her. But little Nina is all grown up now, and wants something from me, and I sure as hell want something back. Now it's game on, and I'm pulling out all the plays.
Asking my old nemesis for a favor is the last thing I want to do, but when my editor charges me with writing a romantic series about hot hockey players, I have no choice but to turn to Cocky Cole Cannon, and he didn’t earn that handle from flashing his infamous grin. When he agrees to teach me, little did I know he’d have a hidden agenda. I want to say no, but when the Playmakers introduces me to his off-ice moves, the only words on my lips are yes.
No way can I fall for the girl I’ve been crushing on since…forever. Not only will her brother kill me, we don't belong in each other’s world. I should have kept things in the neutral zone, but when one sweet taste becomes a game changer, I fear it could uncover everything I spent years hiding, and destroy Nina right along with it.