~ Spoiler Free Book Review – HIM By: Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy ~
During their last summer at hockey camp, best friends, Jamie Canning and Ryan Wesley, took a bet too far. Four years later, Jamie still cannot figure out how he lost his dear friend who completely ignored him after some drunken foolishness, and Wes cannot forgive himself for pushing his straight friend too far. There is now a possible chance that their college teams are set to face off giving Wes the opportunity to finally apologize to his old friend who is also his longtime crush. How will this fare for Wes’s heart? Meanwhile, Jamie has a lot of things about himself he has to learn if he is to know where his life is headed after college.
Contemporary M/M is still a fairly new genre to me, and I think HIM was a fantastic introduction. It will now be my first go-to recommendation for people who want to explore the contemporary M/M world. Honestly, I could not put this book down, and now that I have finished, I have the urge to reread immediately. Firstly, I love a good sports-themed story. I may not know much about hockey, but the book makes it easy for readers who know nothing about hockey to still follow along. Secondly, the two main characters are just too adorable. I love how there is a bit of opposites attract thing happening. The way they play around with each other is so entertaining and really shows off their great relationship. Jamie and Wes sound fucking hot, and seriously, most contact-sports athletes are. Thirdly, the sex scenes were very well written; it was some hot and heavy stuff. There were quite a bit of sexy times, and it might be too much for some people, but I am not complaining. In addition to the sexy times, I really enjoyed the sexual innuendos especially when it was a sports one. Why not play up the theme? Fourthly, there were some nice side characters. Holly is a really cool chick, and Jamie’s family sound awesome. I liked the contrast of how Wes and Jamie’s parents reacted to their sexuality. With that said, fifthly, I appreciated that this book does try to address the issue of acceptance and homophobia especially in sports. It could have been deeper, but I understand that this book is on the light hearted side focusing more on the development on their love. Sixthly, I am not a huge fan of changing POVs, but this book does a decent job of making sure readers know who is narrating. Seventhly, I initially thought the book would drag with this whole hopeless one-sided love plot; I really do not like those. However, this book surprised me and doesn’t really drag. Yet, for such a cocky guy, Wes sure does have a lot of insecurities. Anyways, I would have liked to see more of the side characters. For example, where did Wes’s friend go and why does he come back to explain some unnecessary side drama, only to be left on the back burner once again. Also, I would like more information about Wes’s family, but I was super glad that we were introduced to Jamie’s family. Though I expected a little more of some things, I was still thoroughly entertained while reading this book and am in love with it. Therefore, I would give it a 4.5/5
Side note: I saw on Goodreads that this book is part of a duology. I have to say that I am not all that enthusiastic about this second book. I felt that this first book is quite close to perfect and already has a solid ending. Therefore, I don’t see the need to do anymore, but I could be wrong. Hmmm… I will probably give the second book a try since I do love this couple dearly.