Monday, March 7, 2016

Eliza's Review: US (HIM, #2) by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy

Title: US
Series: HIM, #2
Author: Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy
Release date: 8th March, 2016

Can your favorite hockey players finish their first season together undefeated?

Five months in, NHL forward Ryan Wesley is having a record-breaking rookie season. He's living his dream of playing pro hockey and coming home every night to the man he loves–Jamie Canning, his longtime best friend turned boyfriend. There's just one problem: the most important relationship of his life is one he needs to keep hidden, or else face a media storm that will eclipse his success on the ice.

Jamie loves Wes. He really, truly does. But hiding sucks. It's not the life Jamie envisioned for himself, and the strain of keeping their secret is taking its toll. It doesn't help that his new job isn't going as smoothly as he'd hoped, but he knows he can power through it as long as he has Wes. At least apartment 10B is their retreat, where they can always be themselves.

Or can they? When Wes's nosiest teammate moves in upstairs, the threads of their carefully woven lie begin to unravel. With the outside world determined to take its best shot at them, can Wes and Jamie develop major-league relationship skills on the fly?

Warning: contains sexual situations, a vibrating chair, long-distance sexytimes, and proof that hockey players look hot in any shade of green.


“Fucking hell, Canning, I fucking love you so fucking much.” He sounds like he’s struggling to breathe, and when half his vocabulary is reduced to F-bombs, that means Wes is barely hanging on to his control.

After the fantastic success of Him, there was huge anticipation for me surrounding it's follow up. Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy created such a wonderful story and relationship for Wes & Jamie, I would of had to have been struck down with sheep flu to pass up the opportunity to have more from them.

Us focuses on life for our boys 5 months on from Wes' draft to a pro NHL team and Jamie's coaching position. Busy schedules, bad timing & lack of communication blight their once perfect solitude and we watch them falter as the scales of balance tip against them.

I was caught off guard by how emotive it was. At times my heart broke for Wes, of the two my heart beats a little bit faster for him. His vulnerability is something I may have taken a little bit for granted previously. There is no doubt of his love for Jamie, (and vice versa for that matter) so to see him struggling was tougher than I expected.

As much as the prospect of another book was an absolute draw, I have to confess, I had a slight hesitation and worried if more was necessary. Sarina & Elle's offering quickly quashed this. Was it worth it? YES! Their relationship is like a private in joke we as readers are lucky enough to be in on too. It's honestly laugh out loud funny, with all the great qualities and intimacies Him had to offer, but with the added bonus of much sought transparency.

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At long last, I’m twenty paces away, then ten. Then I’m opening our door. “Hey babe!” I call out like I always do. “I made it.” I drag my duffel over the threshold, then toss my suit coat on top, abandoning these things beside the door, because all I need now is a kiss.

Only then do I notice that our apartment smells amazing. Jamie has cooked dinner for me. Again. He is the perfect man, I swear to God.

“Hey!” he calls, emerging from the hallway leading to our bedroom. He’s wearing jeans and nothing else except—and this is unusual—a beard. “Do I know you?” He gives me a sexy smile.

“I was going to ask the same thing.” I’m staring at the sandy-blond beard. Jamie has always been clean-shaven. I mean—we’ve known each other since before facial hair. He looks different. Older, maybe.

And hot as blazes. Seriously, I can’t wait to feel that beard against my face, and maybe my balls… Jesus. The blood is already rushing south, and I’ve been home fifteen seconds.

And yet I’m just stuck there in the middle of the room for a moment, because even though it’s been eight months since Jamie and I started up together, I’m still a little stunned at my own good fortune. “Hi,” I say again, stupidly.

He walks forward, his easy gait so familiar that my heart breaks a little bit. He puts his hands on my traps and squeezes the muscle there. “Don’t go away for so long. If you do that again, I’m going to have to sneak into your hotel room on the road.”

“Promise?” I ask, and it comes out like gravel. He’s close enough now that I can smell the ocean scent of his shampoo and the beer he drank while he waited for me.

“If I ever get a winning lottery ticket and a day off, I’ll do it,” he says. “Hotel sex after a game? Sounds hot.”

Now I’m measuring the distance to our sofa and counting the layers of clothes I’ll need to remove in the next ninety seconds.

Sarina Bowen is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance. She lives in Vermont's Green Mountains with her family, six chickens and too much ski gear and hockey equipment.


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