Behind the Net
Review,  Romance

Behind the Net by Stephanie Archer – slow burn hockey romance

Behind the Net is enjoyable, slow burn hockey romance with amazing character development.

Behind the Net

Behind the Net (Vancouver Storm #1) by Stephanie Archer

Publication Date : June 30, 2023

Read Date : February 10, 2024

Genre : Romance / Hockey Romance

Source : Kindle Unlimited

Pages : 424

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Disclaimer : This post contains affiliate links.

Synopsis

He’s the hot, grumpy goalie I had a crush on in high school… and now I’m his live-in assistant.

After my ex crushed my dreams in the music industry, I’m done with getting my heart broken. Working as an assistant for an NHL player was supposed to be a breeze, but nothing about Jamie Streicher is easy. He’s an intimidatingly hot, grouchy jerk who can’t stand me. The guy has a massive ego. Keeping things professional will be no problem, even when he demands I move in with him.

Beneath his surliness, though, Jamie’s surprisingly sweet and protective.

When Jamie learns how bad my ex was in bed, his competitive nature flares, and he encourages and spoils me in every way. The creative spark I used to feel about songwriting? It’s back, and I’m writing music again. Between wearing his jersey at games, rowdy parties with the team, and being brave on stage again, I’m falling for him.

He could break my heart, but it might be worth it.

Behind the Net is a grumpy-sunshine pro hockey romance with lots of spice and an HEA. It’s the first book in the Vancouver Storm series, and can be read as a standalone.

Review

Behind the Net is slow burn enjoyable hockey romance, first in Vancouver Storm series, that follows the story of Pippa, a talented heartbroken singer, and Jamie, a goalie of Vancouver Storm who had a crush on each other in high school but they both thought they were out of each other’s league.

Now in the present, when Pippa meets Jamie again as his assistant, he acts closed off making it look like he doesn’t remember her but as she works more for him, harder it becomes to keep old attraction at bay and the last thing she wants is a nursing broken heart the second time.

Beneath the grumpy exterior, Jamie has a golden heart and he is still into Pippa but doesn’t know how to behave around her. He has a lot on his plate. Focusing on hockey and his mother is his priority, and the last thing he wants is to complicate things with Pippa. But when Pippa moves into his apartment maintaining professional boundaries becomes extremely difficult.

It was interesting to see how they both will get over their insecurities and give love another chance.

Writing is gripping and entertaining with a dual perspective. Plot moved fast in first 30% of the book but then it progressed too slow for my liking but there is right amount of hockey, character development, romance and spice that made it a good enjoyable read. Both Pippa and Jamie are ordinary characters but I loved how they both lift each other up throughout the book.

Pippa was lovely and caring with so much self-doubt thanks to her douch ex who took advantage of her talent for past 10 years and then dumped her. I still couldn’t figure out how she couldn’t see through him and why no one warned her! But as she spent more time with Jamie I loved how confidence and self-worth came back to her. It was amazing to see her grow with Jamie and not just that but stand up for herself and also work on her dream to be a singer once again.

Jamie is grumpy, cold, and single-focused person who appears jerk at first but the more about his life is revealed and the more he admits his feelings for Pippa, he turns out most caring, loving, and responsible person. His love for his mother is amazing. His childhood has been difficult with his mother suffering from depression and anxiety, making him grow up fast and responsible. It was heart aching to read how much he compromised to take care of her. I love him even more for constantly supporting Pippa and helping her to achieve her dream.

Romance is a little insta-lust at first but then it turns slow burn with many lovely and spicy moments. The chemistry between Pippa and Jamie is really good. There is other family and team drama that kept story entertaining and well-balanced.

My favorite things in Behind the Net are – Pippa’s sister, Hazel, the Christmas surprise, all the doggie moments, the confrontation with her ex and parents, Ice rink fight bringing two best friends together.

Why 3 stars –

I was impressed in the first half but the second half felt too slow.

Monologues were okaish. I was tired of reading what was keeping them from each other and why Pippa had zero self-worth after some point.

Some spicy scenes were just okay.

Overall, Behind the Net is enjoyable, slow burn hockey romance with amazing character development but it didn’t wow me. I’m still reading the second book as I liked Hazel and Rory in this book and I have a feeling it will be much better than this.

You might like Behind the Net if you enjoy,

– grumpy x sunshine
– boss x assistant
– roommates
– pro hockey romance
– slow burn
– forced proximity
– Dog steals the show

Goodreads | Amazon.in | Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk

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Hi, I'm Yesha, an Indian book blogger. Avid and eclectic reader who loves to read with a cup of tea. Not born reader but I don't think I’m going to stop reading books in this life. “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”

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