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Off Her Game

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Penalty Number One: Men Making time for men and relationships doesn’t fit into Valerie Chase’s game plan. This crisis-counselor-turned-cocktail-waitress knows the score—Men are a distraction. But when a certain hockey player tempts her wild side, part of her wants to indulge in a little harmless fun. Penalty Number Two: Desire As the star center for the Texas Highlanders, Dar Penalty Number One: Men Making time for men and relationships doesn’t fit into Valerie Chase’s game plan. This crisis-counselor-turned-cocktail-waitress knows the score—Men are a distraction. But when a certain hockey player tempts her wild side, part of her wants to indulge in a little harmless fun. Penalty Number Two: Desire As the star center for the Texas Highlanders, Darren Moran's good looks and deadly determination make him a fan favorite. But after the previous season’s disaster, the last thing he needs is to let some woman crawl under his skin. But… Valerie is different. She brings out the best in him—both on and off the ice—and he’s not about to lose her. Penalty Number Three: Passion When the game moves to the next level, Darren and Val have got to call timeout. An unplanned romance is a game-thrower, a sinful temptation that neither of them can afford. After all, there’s no way to have order in matters of the heart when the penalties tally up to an ejection from the game.


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Penalty Number One: Men Making time for men and relationships doesn’t fit into Valerie Chase’s game plan. This crisis-counselor-turned-cocktail-waitress knows the score—Men are a distraction. But when a certain hockey player tempts her wild side, part of her wants to indulge in a little harmless fun. Penalty Number Two: Desire As the star center for the Texas Highlanders, Dar Penalty Number One: Men Making time for men and relationships doesn’t fit into Valerie Chase’s game plan. This crisis-counselor-turned-cocktail-waitress knows the score—Men are a distraction. But when a certain hockey player tempts her wild side, part of her wants to indulge in a little harmless fun. Penalty Number Two: Desire As the star center for the Texas Highlanders, Darren Moran's good looks and deadly determination make him a fan favorite. But after the previous season’s disaster, the last thing he needs is to let some woman crawl under his skin. But… Valerie is different. She brings out the best in him—both on and off the ice—and he’s not about to lose her. Penalty Number Three: Passion When the game moves to the next level, Darren and Val have got to call timeout. An unplanned romance is a game-thrower, a sinful temptation that neither of them can afford. After all, there’s no way to have order in matters of the heart when the penalties tally up to an ejection from the game.

30 review for Off Her Game

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jena

    GOODREADS WINNER! I want to thank the authors for sending out free books to be reviewed. I did not feel that this book added anything to my life by reading it. The characters did not seem well developed, and the author introduced many other characters that seemed irrelevant. The main female character's thought patterns were annoying....the "conflict" in the entire book was that she was broke and that she felt she should continually break up with the love of her life because of that. There wasn't GOODREADS WINNER! I want to thank the authors for sending out free books to be reviewed. I did not feel that this book added anything to my life by reading it. The characters did not seem well developed, and the author introduced many other characters that seemed irrelevant. The main female character's thought patterns were annoying....the "conflict" in the entire book was that she was broke and that she felt she should continually break up with the love of her life because of that. There wasn't any moment in this story that I would recommend someone reading. There were blatant typos/grammatically incorrect sentences on at least 5 pages. I would not recommend this book to anyone, even if it is free.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jenee -Jenee's Book Blog

    “I've had a good taste of you, lady. I'm fucking addicted. And I will have my fix if it kills me."-Darren Darren is a Hockey player for the NHL Texas Highlanders. He was married for less than a year when he found his wife, Angie, cheating on him with the landscaper in his bed. (Ouch!) Darren seems to where his personal life for everyone to see. When he's angry, he plays horrible hockey. When he's happy, he plays amazing hockey. At one point in the book his playing becomes such a concern that he i “I've had a good taste of you, lady. I'm fucking addicted. And I will have my fix if it kills me."-Darren Darren is a Hockey player for the NHL Texas Highlanders. He was married for less than a year when he found his wife, Angie, cheating on him with the landscaper in his bed. (Ouch!) Darren seems to where his personal life for everyone to see. When he's angry, he plays horrible hockey. When he's happy, he plays amazing hockey. At one point in the book his playing becomes such a concern that he is told to play better and get a raise, or keep playing bad and he'll be a free agent. I don't believe he ever truly loved his ex, he just loved the idea of having a family to go home to. “He was divorced. He was torn in half, part of him missing the marriage that had failed, and the other rejoicing that the adulterous bitch who had the affair with the fucking landscaper was finally out of his life. Thank God for prenups…”-Darren “Darren didn’t usually engage in bar fights, but today had been a bad day. Not only had he spent hours in a courtroom ending his marriage, but the guy had messed with his favorite waitress, even when she’d told him to back off. He needed to make him pay. Someone needed to pay.” “Oh, you are toasted, aren't you?”-Val “Not toasted. Pissed. He grabbed you.”-Darren “It happens. Darren… You can’t start a fight every time a drunk grabs a waitress’s ass.”-Val “Not every waitress. You. No one touches you like that,” -Darren “You get us to the playoffs, Moran, and you get a ten percent raise and a three year contract. Stanley Cup finals, twenty-five percent and a f****** kiss.” Valerie worked at the Teen Outreach Center part time and loved her job, until budget cut backs forced her to be laid off. She also works as a waitress at a bar, which is how she knows Darren. Val does scrap to pay her rent each month, which hurts her need to control everything in her life, but I never truly felt an emotional connection as to why she made such a big deal out of the money issue. I know she says she needs control and having lost her job hurt, but why didn't she just go and search for a new job. She never really made an effort to get control of the job situation. She just starts talking about giving up and moving back home with her parents if she can't make rent. "You know, all I've ever wanted is to have some measure of control over my life. I had a job I loved, even if it didn't pay well. And because donations were down, because politics force out the funding, my job, my livelihood gets cut.”-Val “Control is a fickle thing.” She smiled tightly. “You can think you have everything in hand, but in one second, it'll all be gone.” She met Darren's clear eyes with a steady resolve. “This is why I won't have kids. There's no control where kids are concerned. Their very nature defies it. They're chaotic.”-Val I do have a problem connecting emotionally with the characters, but let me say one thing...I had absolutely NO problem feeling the desire between them in the bedroom! Let me just say WOW!!! Some of those scenes had me breathing hot and heavy! The two of them in the bedroom was A-mazing! Darren's inner thoughts were always dirty and a complete turn on! (If you don't want to read about a hot sex scene: stop reading now! You've been warned) “Darren closed his eyes, visualizing her naked breasts as she knelt before him. Her lovely mouth would form an “O” as she took him inside her mouth, sucking deliciously. Stroking faster, mimicking the motions with his hand he imagined her mouth doing. He would bend his lovely waitress over his kitchen counter, throw her against the wall and f*** her into oblivion, make her ride him until he lost his mind.”-Darren “He pressed his body against hers, keeping her trapped between his arms. There was no mistaking his intentions now, not with his erection pressing into her pelvis, and his tongue down her throat. His body greedily begged him to bend her over the desk and f*** her into oblivion."-Darren Darren really never loved his ex-wife, but Val has a problem believing that as well as a problem allowing herself to fall in love. They go back and forth trying to figure out how they feel about each other. I thought this was a good story, I just wish I would have felt more of a connection with the characters. I give it 3.5 stars. “Darren liked the more girl next door look. Women that were nothing like his ex-wife, Angela. Like Val, who was a little neurotic about the cleanliness, but fun to poke at. He liked her shiny dark curls and the way her hips flared in that so very feminine way.” “He wasn't over his ex, and she knew it. If she kept going, it wouldn’t be right. Six month separation or not, he wasn’t over his now ex-wife.”-Val “Val was exactly the kind of woman his mother would love. Hell, she was exactly the kind of woman he loved. That he did love. But something had to give. Either he needed to get his focus back on track by fixing this... whatever it was with her, or he needed to cut her loose so he could function. The idea of the latter left him with a painful hole in his heart. She was his good luck charm.”-Val

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    There was just something about this book that was "off" to me. Maybe it's because I've been reading a lot of hockey romances lately. But it just seemed a little lacking. I honestly didn't care about either Val or Darren and so their romance was lackluster. Darren needed some flaws and Val was just a crazy mess and I kept wondering why these two were together. All in all, it's an ok book. I may read more of this series, but I'm not sure I'll hunt them out. There was just something about this book that was "off" to me. Maybe it's because I've been reading a lot of hockey romances lately. But it just seemed a little lacking. I honestly didn't care about either Val or Darren and so their romance was lackluster. Darren needed some flaws and Val was just a crazy mess and I kept wondering why these two were together. All in all, it's an ok book. I may read more of this series, but I'm not sure I'll hunt them out.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Romancing the Book

    Reviewed by: Marissa Book provided by: book provided by the author for review Review originally posted at Romancing the Book I love a good romance involving a big, bad hockey player. Add to that a sassy bar waitress and what’s not to love? Okay, it’s kind of weird to put an ice hockey team in Texas. Texas is land of football, baseball, and barbecue beef. Yes, I know there are hockey teams in Texas. Somewhere. But it’s just so hard to wrap my mind around a hockey player in a land of cowboys. Luckily Reviewed by: Marissa Book provided by: book provided by the author for review Review originally posted at Romancing the Book I love a good romance involving a big, bad hockey player. Add to that a sassy bar waitress and what’s not to love? Okay, it’s kind of weird to put an ice hockey team in Texas. Texas is land of football, baseball, and barbecue beef. Yes, I know there are hockey teams in Texas. Somewhere. But it’s just so hard to wrap my mind around a hockey player in a land of cowboys. Luckily for me there’s not a lot of “Texas” in the story – just a lot of Darren, Val, and, of course, falling in love. Darren, the hotshot hockey player, is he-man macho, ready to protect his woman (even before she’s his) at all costs. What don’t I like about him? He’s a hockey player with all his natural teeth and no scars. At least, none that anyone mentions in the story. Anyone who reads my reviews knows I like my men with flaws and Darren just doesn’t have any. Despite a failed marriage, he’s not really a commitment-phobe. There’s a little fear about his performance on the ice, but it’s such a minor part of the story it almost wasn’t there. He has no physical scars. No internal scars. Which just makes him too perfect. Val, at least, has issues. She’s lost her job (a job she truly loves) and is living from paycheck to paycheck (something I can totally relate to). She doesn’t have room in her life for a man – and she fights her attraction to Darren even while watching his games on the bar TV. Her heart wants a man but her brain keeps getting in the way, telling her she needs to get her job and finances in order first. Now this is a woman I can understand. And now for my nod to realism. In one bar scene, Darren is disappointed to find fellow bar patrons soaking up the baseball playoffs. The television could have been showing hockey’s greatest moments, but the author kept it real. Baseball in Texas and men with beer guts cheering. Overall, a pleasant and enjoyable book.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Christi Snow

    My Review: This is a difficult review to write. There were moments when I loved this book, but then there were things that happened in the story that took me completely out of the book. I loved, loved, loved Darren. The book starts with him at the courthouse and you immediately feel for him as he's dealing with the mental anguish of his divorce. I liked the fact that he's a hockey player and where he's at in his career, having spent 10 years playing for the Highlanders in the NHL. I liked him wit My Review: This is a difficult review to write. There were moments when I loved this book, but then there were things that happened in the story that took me completely out of the book. I loved, loved, loved Darren. The book starts with him at the courthouse and you immediately feel for him as he's dealing with the mental anguish of his divorce. I liked the fact that he's a hockey player and where he's at in his career, having spent 10 years playing for the Highlanders in the NHL. I liked him with his friends (the scene with him at the doctor's office with Cody was hilarious...) I like that he's loyal and devoted to his team and his group of friends. I had a harder time with Valerie. There were times where I loved her just as much as Darren, but other times, I just didn't understand her actions. Her character was (at times) extremely wishy-washy and didn't seem true (at times) to her career and her knowledge of the way people work that she would need as a counselor. There were times when I just felt like she was stringing Darren along, especially toward the end of the book. I liked her career story line and the way that it played into the team job. I wish that we'd gotten to see more of that aspect of it and her interacting with the team. I received an ARC of this book, but there were serious continuity issues within the story (of the copy I received). I *hope* that these were fixed before the actual book because they were really distracting within the version of the book I read. I kept going back and re-reading sections to make sure I'd read it right the first time and that those circumstances changed 2-3 pages later. While this book may not have been my favorite, I still enjoyed it enough that I definitely want to continue to read the series. I loved all the support characters that Suzan has set up and am excited to read their stories. Plus, it's hockey...really hot hockey players? You know, I'm in. I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sandy S

    3.5 stars REVIEW: OFF HER GAME is the first storyline in Suzan Butler’s new Texas Highlanders Ice Hockey series focusing on the men who play professional hockey and the women they love. Suzan also includes a variety of secondary characters including team owners, bar managers, ex-wives and lovers as well as a multitude of family members, patrons and fans. Off Her Game focuses on Valerie Chase, a part time waitress and full time counselor at a shelter for at-risk teens. But when she is suddenly lai 3.5 stars REVIEW: OFF HER GAME is the first storyline in Suzan Butler’s new Texas Highlanders Ice Hockey series focusing on the men who play professional hockey and the women they love. Suzan also includes a variety of secondary characters including team owners, bar managers, ex-wives and lovers as well as a multitude of family members, patrons and fans. Off Her Game focuses on Valerie Chase, a part time waitress and full time counselor at a shelter for at-risk teens. But when she is suddenly laid off from her counseling job due to cut-backs, Val is at risk to lose everything when money becomes tight. And to complicate matters, she is attracted to professional hockey player Darren Moran, whose divorce just came final. Val isn’t in the mood to become Darren’s rebound relationship but she continues to send mixed signals even once their relationship passes friendship to lovers. I did have one complaint in this particular storyline and that was the mixed signals Valerie continued to give-off. One moment she was hot and the next she was cold-all within a matter of minutes. She would refuse Darren’s advances then she would be upset when he refused to play the game. The reader is taken on a roller coaster ride of one character’s inability to acknowledge her true feelings and in doing so amped up my anxiety level. At one point I hoped Darren dumped her a** for good but Darren was a man in love and believed Val was his personal good luck charm both on and off the ice. If you are a fan of hard-hitting sports heroes and beautiful heroines, Off Her Game is the perfect match. There is a potential for several more storylines especially for one bar owner in particular. Let’s hope everyone gets the HEA they deserve. Copy supplied by author.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    4.5 Stars This is the first book I have read by this author. I look forward to reading many more. I love hockey, and romance books so this was two for one. Darren a NHL Hockey Player for the Texas Highlanders, Valorie a counselor and waitress. Darren recently divorced, and Val laid off from her counseling work. They both have had a bad go of it recently. They find their selves falling for eachother. They know each other from the bar that Val works at. They start a relationship, sexual at first, wh 4.5 Stars This is the first book I have read by this author. I look forward to reading many more. I love hockey, and romance books so this was two for one. Darren a NHL Hockey Player for the Texas Highlanders, Valorie a counselor and waitress. Darren recently divorced, and Val laid off from her counseling work. They both have had a bad go of it recently. They find their selves falling for eachother. They know each other from the bar that Val works at. They start a relationship, sexual at first, when they step back to try to make relationship not purely sexual. Val has some doubts, and pulls away. Can these two make it work? I recommend this book, I loved it and look forward to reading more of this series in the future.

  8. 4 out of 5

    BBMoreB ~

    This was a pleasant debut for the Texas Highlanders Hockey series. However, I was slightly overwhelmed by the amount of characters that were tossed immediately into the story – it felt a little forced; unnatural. As a reader, I would have appreciated more time spent getting to know the main characters Valerie and Darren. There is a copious amount of sexual encounters, but never seemed to be any real intimacy between them. Her stunning writing style has lots of potential. As a huge fan of sport r This was a pleasant debut for the Texas Highlanders Hockey series. However, I was slightly overwhelmed by the amount of characters that were tossed immediately into the story – it felt a little forced; unnatural. As a reader, I would have appreciated more time spent getting to know the main characters Valerie and Darren. There is a copious amount of sexual encounters, but never seemed to be any real intimacy between them. Her stunning writing style has lots of potential. As a huge fan of sport romances, I have hope that the author will push forward with the series. Disclosure: This ebook was provided to me free of charge by Book Monster Promotions for the sole purpose of an honest review. All thoughts, comments, and ratings are my own.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Barb

    Valerie wants only one thing: to be in control of her life again. But when Darren, a recently divorced hockey star tempts her, she wants to indulge in some harmless fun. An unplanned romance is a temptation neither can afford. There’s no way to have order in love when penalties lead to an ejection from the game. Valerie has more turmoil of her own making, than roller coasters have turns. But Darren goes after her anyway he can. Love Darren's character. He is down to earth, not full of himself, ye Valerie wants only one thing: to be in control of her life again. But when Darren, a recently divorced hockey star tempts her, she wants to indulge in some harmless fun. An unplanned romance is a temptation neither can afford. There’s no way to have order in love when penalties lead to an ejection from the game. Valerie has more turmoil of her own making, than roller coasters have turns. But Darren goes after her anyway he can. Love Darren's character. He is down to earth, not full of himself, yet has a temper that rears it's ugly head every so often. All in all, i love Susan Butler. Her writing is on a level that i can relate with, and she knows how to spin a story. 5 stars.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Shayne

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Contains some spoilers!!! I received this book as a free giveaway. It was a fun enough story that I finished it all in one day. The sex was great. But in the end I was left unsatisfied. I would have loved a nine month epilog. Something life Darren and Val stopping by the maternity ward to see the new baby of Cody and Joey. What happened to Jen and Nick? And there was two strange situations, one with Charbonneau and then the conversation with Gavin. I felt like I was left hanging? Are you planning Contains some spoilers!!! I received this book as a free giveaway. It was a fun enough story that I finished it all in one day. The sex was great. But in the end I was left unsatisfied. I would have loved a nine month epilog. Something life Darren and Val stopping by the maternity ward to see the new baby of Cody and Joey. What happened to Jen and Nick? And there was two strange situations, one with Charbonneau and then the conversation with Gavin. I felt like I was left hanging? Are you planning on a book 2? In the end I feel like Darren. I wanted more than a good F%^&

  11. 4 out of 5

    Cocktails and Books

    I really wanted to love this one, because of the hockey element, but I found the heroine annoyed me so much it took away from Darren's appeal. Not a bad overall story, but just not what I was expecting. Review to come. I really wanted to love this one, because of the hockey element, but I found the heroine annoyed me so much it took away from Darren's appeal. Not a bad overall story, but just not what I was expecting. Review to come.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Pamela

    This was a good read for a weekend escape. Although I am not a sports fan, I loved the character of Darren (what's not to love). I also enjoyed the vast array of secondary characters and look forward to reading a sequel. This was a good read for a weekend escape. Although I am not a sports fan, I loved the character of Darren (what's not to love). I also enjoyed the vast array of secondary characters and look forward to reading a sequel.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Marcy Kludt belles

    First Reads winner - good book. Had some unnecessary language otherwise I enjoyed it. Expected more for an ending.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kerry

    Failed to really grab my attention. I never really connected with the characters.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

    Good read. I liked the characters. So far the series is interesting.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Vicky

  17. 4 out of 5

    Sondra

  18. 4 out of 5

    Michelle C.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Lara Guvelioglu

  20. 5 out of 5

    Rose Kilby

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sten Kristensen

  22. 4 out of 5

    S

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mahina Sayin

  25. 5 out of 5

    Rana Adams

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

  27. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Mizanin

  28. 5 out of 5

    Melissa Armstrong

  29. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

  30. 4 out of 5

    Andrea

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