Sugar & Spice by Sarah Sanders

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ This one is super short, super cute and super hot. Princess Aurora has just been formally made the Crown Princess of her c...

Unadulterated Something by M.J. Duncan


Emma Beauchamp, the face of American Women’s Hockey (Ice Hockey), finally wins the Olympic Gold as her last hurrah and retires from competitive sports to teach maths and coach the hockey team in her old alma mater, Stonebridge, a boarding school. With close friends and a dream job, Emma is in a happy place till her old nemesis, Campbell Jordan, arrives on campus as a counsellor and assistant coach. Campbell, ex-captain of the Canadian team, retired from professional competitive hockey before Emma because of a shattered knee (gifted by Team America). During the days of their competitive playing, Emma and Campbell were bitter rivals and their teams were sworn enemies. Emma is not particularly thrilled by Campbell’s arrival but has to adult it up.

This is a straight-forward romance with great chemistry, engaging banter and superb supporting cast. It is not slow burn but there is the right amount of time spent to develop the relationship between Campbell and Emma at a perfect pace. There are some funny, funny moments and some that actually give you tingles, butterflies and romantic goosebumps. The whole developing relationship is so well done that you just slow down and savour it. The continuing competitiveness between Campbell and Emma is totally endearing. We also totally loved that there is zero angst and no misunderstandings in this one.

Campbell starts off charming and quickly moves to being utterly captivating. Emma – okay, some mixed feelings here. Emma is adorable for most of the book.

Campbell and Emma are so good together that you actually feel heart-eyed about them. For most part they are equally romantic and into each other. Then somewhere, Duncan lost her steady grip on the madly romantic pulse, and slipped up with Emma. The first stumble was just before their first time together. But that one was a teeny tiny stumble. Then came the point when Campbell is in an accident and Emma has to be told by a friend to go to the hospitalised Campbell. This didn’t sit particularly well with us but we tried to explain it off as Emma being numb. It was the final ‘grand gesture’ that stripped Emma of romantic-ness for us. Emma doesn’t make the gesture. She doesn’t even think it. She is actively against doing it and is practically goaded to making the gesture by her friend. We really wish that the big acts of flying to Campbell were both Emma’s doing and not Emma being told to or made to do.

Up until almost 80% or more of the book it was a solid 5 for us. And then, sadly, it lost its romantic steam. But that’s just us with our starry-eyed expectation from love and romance.

This is definitely a great read and solidly recommended.  


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