"I'm a warrior and there's no quit in me. And sometimes, just maybe, rock bottom is the perfect place to rebuild."
I believe this was my first read by this author and I can definitely say that I am now a fan! Also, this cover is so so good, it matches perfectly with the story and Zach's character. This was an angsty romance that left me in a rollercoaster of emotions.
Zach was the captain of the hockey team. He was the star, the first draft and the one everyone was paying attention to. As always, these guys are the ones that have the deepest issues and they fight every day to put on a mask so that the fans don't see that they are damaged. Zach is one of them. He has a past and blames himself for an accident that happened to a loved one. With each day, it's getting harder to suppress his anxiety and face the pressure of being the team leader. Sugar is a nice girl, with great grades and a dream to go to law school and prove the family that abandoned her that she was worth it and was good enough to do everything without them. She just needed a tiny little favor from the star hockey player so she could get the final push to law school. That's where the bargain begins. Until things become serious and very real.
I loved it! This was an amazing read and I couldn't put it down. I'm already checking this author's other books because I loved this one. It was funny, sexy but it had some important subjects. Also, I really liked how she disclosed anxiety. This illness is not treated with the seriousness that it deserves and, in this book, the author put it on display and showed how hard can it be to live with it and how much damage it can make to a person's life. It was an incredible read.
Zack Morris, or Z, is a hockey star. Captain of the team, he not even graduated from college and already has proposals for professional teams. Everyone knows him, but no one really sees him. Few know the battle he fights every day. The darkness and the guilt with which he fights daily.
Sugar Ryan has great grades, but she's on the waiting list for the “dream college”. She was abandoned by her father and with her mother's death, she struggles to prove her worth. And a plan arises: perhaps, with the right company, in the right event, she can achieve her goal. And who better than Z to help her?
A simple contract and some rules can make this hoax work ... unless this relationship turns into a game of cat and mouse, where the most important rule has already been broken: do not fall in love. And while one denies his feelings, the other tries to prove how good the two can be together. But unexpected events and revealed secrets can change the fate of the couple.
With intense emotional baggage and lots of chemistry, the story has depth without being extremely dramatic and offers to the readers the opportunity to reflect on how parental abandonment, anxiety, and tragedy can mark lives and emotionally shake people full of potential.