Monday, May 8, 2017

RELEASE DAY BLITZ, 5 STAR REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Confessions of a Former Puck Bunny (Taking Shots #4) by Cindi Madsen


Release Date: May 8, 2017

Confession #1: I used to be a puck bunny, but after a hockey player broke my heart, I gave up all things hockey. Now I'm just focused on finding a way to pass my math class so I can graduate college.

Confession #2: Ryder "Ox" Maddox's deep, sexy voice sends fuzzy tingles through my entire body, and I'm powerless to stop it. Which is a big problem since the hot, surprisingly funny hockey player is my new math tutor.

Confession #3: I can't stop thinking about how ripped Ryder is from all his hockey training, and how fun it'd be to cross lines with him.

Confession #4: I kissed a hockey player and I liked it.

Confession #5: If I'm not careful, I might relapse and fall for Ryder, and then I'll be totally pucked.

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My Review

I received an advanced copy of this book with the promise of an honest review. 

Lindsay is a former puck bunny. It's something she wants to forget and has done a some what decent job of putting the past behind her. When she realizes that in order for her to pass her math glass and graduate, she will need to get a math tutor. Of course her math tutor comes in the form of the last person she expects to help her. Ryder happens to be one of those hockey players she is determined to stay away from, but if he has anything to say about it, Lindsay will forget all about that. 

I freaking loved Ryder. He was not only adorable, but I loved how he did not give up on Lindsay. He didn't care about her past and was determined to make Lindsay give him a shot...even if he had to bargain a little. 
“Anyone ever tell you that you’re kind of intense?”
“Says the girl who has a grudge against math, hockey, and, I’m starting to suspect, fun.”
I gasped and a slow smile spread across his face.
“I’m okay with a challenge. As I mentioned, once I set my mind on something…” He looked me up and down and heat licked at my skin, tracing the same path his eyes did. “I think the first order of business will be working on that grudge against math. Then we’ll shift to the one you have against hockey players.” He ran his fingers across his jaw. “I’d suggest starting by working with the very defenseman who wants to help you with math, and I’m pretty sure that’ll naturally solve the one against having fun.”
I lifted my chin. “I do not have a grudge against fun.”I should probably be more offended at his accusation, even if I had sort of forgotten what it was like to go out, no keeping my guard up, and just enjoy the moments as they came. But he’d said it lightly, more teasing, half challenge for sure, and despite how busy he was, he was offering to tutor me in his spare time.
Tutoring I desperately needed.
I didn’t want to have to owe him one. Lines still needed to be drawn, boundaries kept uncrossed. “What do you charge for private tutoring? If we’re not going to the tutoring center—and honestly I’d rather not—it seems like I should pay you. I wouldn’t want to take advantage of you.”
Mischief danced along the curve of his grin.“Feel free to take advantage of me anytime.”
I shook my head. “Walked right into that one.”
“Yes you did. Now, I’m hungry, you’re hungry, and if it makes you feel better, we’ll pretend the diner is the tutoring center and that we’re on the college’s dime.”
An internal debate took place in my head. That there were other tutors in the sea, so I’d find and pay one of them, even if I couldn’t afford it. Or I’d make do with the gruesome twosome in the tutoring center, because my tuition money already paid for that.
They’ll never get me in B range, my brain whispered.I told it to mind its own business, especially since it always took a break whenever Ryder was around, which was partially to blame for me being in this compromising position in the first place.
“How about this?” Ryder asked, obviously reading my hesitation.“For every tutoring session, we do something fun. That’s the payment plan.”
I arched an eyebrow. “And I suppose you get to decide what’s fun?”
“Well, you and fun aren’t acquainted enough for you to do it. Just consider me your intermediary.” I shot him a look and let out an exaggerated sigh, but honestly, it wasn’t a bad deal. I supposed I could afford a little fun. Maybe.
He put his hand on the small of my back. “Now come on, neither of us is getting any younger.”
It hit me that he was at least two years younger than I was, which made me feel like my mom all over again. But when he tilted his head toward the exit and gave me a gentle nudge, I decided it was perfectly acceptable for my math tutor to be younger than me, and for me to go on a few fun, friendly outings with said tutor.
The way my blood rushed to the spot where he’d put his hand? Probably not so acceptable, but I was too hungry and too desperate for math help to turn back now.
And what fun they have! And at first a lot of it is innocent stuff. Nothing sexual. Just two people having a good time together. Ryder knew that if he pushed Lindsay for too much, she would back away all together. So he just charmed his way into her heart (and mine). 

I just loved Lindsay and Ryder as a couple. Sure, there are reasons why they shouldn't be together or why some people think they don't make sense, but thankfully they realize that it doesn't matter what anyone else wants or thinks. And luckily their friends are on board as well. One of my favorite scenes is when everyone is all together, just being college kids and having a good time. Lindsay was hesitant to join their group because of her past, but they let her know right away that just like Ryder, they don't care about that. 

One thing all the books in this series have in common is the big groveling scene. LOVE. IT. Cindi sure knows how to make her men grovel. And just like the book before the one, none of that would even happen without the help of teammates and their girlfriends. They want things to work out almost as much as Ryder and Lindsay do. It's all about teamwork on and off the ice!  

This is another great book by Cindi and a wonderful addition to the series. A must read for those Taking Shots fans. 

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About the Author
USA Today Bestselling author Cindi Madsen sits at her computer every chance she gets, plotting, revising, and falling in love with her characters. Sometimes it makes her a crazy person. Without it, she'd be even crazier. She has way too many shoes but can always find a reason to buy a new pretty pair, especially if they're sparkly, colorful, or super tall. She loves music, dancing, and wishes summer lasted all year long. She lives in Colorado (where summer is most definitely NOT all year long) with her husband and three children.  
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