The Penalty Box

( 46 )

Overview

Everyone from Didsbury High remembers Katie Fisher as the dumpy brainiac from the poor side of town.

Everyone from Didsbury High remembers Paul van Dorn as the school hockey star—and heartthrob.

But now they’re facing off—and matching up in more ways than one. Katie’s lost the pounds, added some self-confidence, and become a drop-dead gorgeous sociology professor.

And since a series of concussions put an end ...

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Overview

Everyone from Didsbury High remembers Katie Fisher as the dumpy brainiac from the poor side of town.

Everyone from Didsbury High remembers Paul van Dorn as the school hockey star—and heartthrob.

But now they’re facing off—and matching up in more ways than one. Katie’s lost the pounds, added some self-confidence, and become a drop-dead gorgeous sociology professor.

And since a series of concussions put an end to Paul’s pro-hockey career, his star has dimmed. Now he hits the ice as a youth hockey coach. But he’s still got the hometown crowd behind him as the owner of a bar called the Penalty Box.

Paul is reliving his glory days. Katie wishes she could put those years behind her. And the battle of wills that ensues just might knock love right out of the game…

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this fun, fast rinkside contemporary romance from Martin (Total Rush), down-on-his-luck hockey jock Paul van Dorn and formerly overweight overachiever Katie Fisher answer the age-old question: can you ever live down high school? Reintroduced at their 10-year reunion, Paul is stunned to find the girl he dubbed "Bubble Butt" grown into a sexy sociology professor. Recently forced to retire from the NHL, Paul has returned to their hometown, tiny Didsbury, Conn., where he stews in post-pro blues at his bar, the Penalty Box. Katie, on a yearlong book sabbatical, has moved home with her mother and nephew Tuck, whose own mom is stuck in rehab. Despite Paul's past cruelty, Katie falls for him after he gives a revealing interview for her project on sports and male identity. What begins as an undercover affair blossoms into a life-changing relationship as the pair discover that living in the present beats living in the past. Martin scores with this witty blend of romance and family dynamics. (Mar.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780425208908
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/7/2006
  • Series: New York Blades Series , #3
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 1,361,943
  • Product dimensions: 4.32 (w) x 6.96 (h) x 0.99 (d)

Meet the Author

Deirdre Martin has written scripts for the daytime drama One Life to Live. She lives with her husband and her dog, Molly, in Ithaca, New York.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 46 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(20)

4 Star

(15)

3 Star

(5)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(5)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 47 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2006

    Big Disappointment

    This was a very disappointing read from Diedre Martin. I loved Body Check and Fair Play. However, this book was torture to read. I could not understand why the characters wanted to be together. Katie, the heroine, spent the entire time criticizing her hero, Paul van Dorn. I found her to be negative and whiney. Why Paul van Dorn, or any male for that matter would want to be with this heroine is beyond me.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2012

    Great!

    One of my favs. Such a cute and fun story line!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2008

    disappointed

    HATED,Hated the heroine. Why any man would put up with her is beyond me. Out of all of Deirdre's books this one I didn't keep. I loved all her other books and have kept them to read again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2008

    A romance that's not crass

    I haven't read too many romance novels but this weekend I read two: The Penatly Box by Deirdre Martin and Secrets of Surrender by Madeline Hunter. Now, I'm looking for realistic situations and I found Penalty Box to be just that, with real characters that the author actually took the time and care to flesh out. I might agree that the chemistry wasn't perfect between the two leads but it wasn't all 'waves of unbelievable mindblowing blah blah blah' that I found in Secrets of Surrender. What I wanted (and for the most part found) was a kind of Bridget Jones with the missing juicy bits written in. Deirdre's novel felt like a romance while the other felt like porn. Perhaps the romance connoisseur, which I definitely am not, is looking for barely disguised Penthouse Forum, but I am not. I want to be swept away by the story and not the rippling muscles and darkening eyes. I would definitely recommend this novel and I'll buy her other books and give them a read too.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2007

    only okay

    I really liked Body Check and Fair Play but I was disappointed by this book. I just didn't think that these two characters had any chemistry. The other two books before this were much better.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2007

    A reviewer

    This book is amazing. I'm a huge hockey fan and I love how Dedire MArtin combines the two. It's also a good read becasue the love scenes aren't trashy. She gives romance novels a good name. My friends and I keep passing this book around. It's one of my favorites. It's so good you don't want to put it down. I love how acurately Martin is at depicting modern day relationships and how they can be a challenge. I can't wait till her new book comes out in Feb.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 5, 2006

    24 hours

    This was the first book i have read by this author and I have to say that i was worried that I wouldn't like it. But i was wrong I finished reading this book in 24 hours. the Relationship between Katie and Paul was funny to read and the relationship he made with tuck was sweet. A must read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2006

    don't waste your money

    Having read hundreds of romance novels over the years maybe I'm really picky, but this book was one of the few I have literally thrown into the trash unfinished. I couldn't find any sympathy for the main characters at all. Kept wanting to tell both of them to 'get over it!' I was very disappointed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2006

    Fast paced and fun

    I've read all Deirdre Martin's hockey books and I'd have to say this one is my favorite so far. Paul and Katie's relationship is so real, as are the youth hockey scenes. There are some very funny scenes, and some very funny dialogue as well. I'd totally recommend it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2006

    Real romance

    In The Penalty Box Deirdre Martin once again offers her unique combination of romance, hockey, humor and real life challenges. The dialog crackles with humor and pathos and the plot touches on serious issues as well as romance. This most recent release in the ongoing saga of the New York Blades is another must read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 16, 2006

    Who wrote this?

    Surely Diedre Martin of Body Check didn't write this. It was pretty pathetic, very little action just a lot of whining from hero and heroine. Sorry Diedre, but if you wrote this perhaps you need to attend a dozen hockey games. I've read the other two books of Ms. Martin and enjoyed them both. Joyce Hall

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2006

    3 months

    It took me 3 months to read this book. I love to read and will usually finish a book in a few days. This one was so boring that I only read it when nothing else was available. The lead man had a massive ego throughout the whole book and the leading lady was whiney and paranoid.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2006

    Deirdre Martin scores a hat trick!

    THE PENALTY BOX is the third in Martin¿s New York Blades hockey romance series and it¿s a big winner. Katie Fisher lives everyone¿s fantasy when she returns to her small hometown¿s high school reunion transformed from an overweight, unpopular adolescent into a beautiful and brainy psychology professor. Katie¿s not just smart, she¿s hilarious, delivering the snappy comebacks we all wish we could come up with. Of course, she developed her humor back in those difficult high school days to compensate for her perceived inadequacies which she has never quite shaken off. Paul Van Dorn also attends the reunion. Unlike Katie, he was the most popular guy in school since he was gorgeous and brilliantly talented athletically. He went on to a major league hockey career with the New York Blades which was cut short by a succession of serious injuries. He¿s gone back to his hometown to buy a sports bar, called The Penalty Box, where he can relive his past glory. The chemistry between Katie and Paul is instant and exciting. Their verbal sparring keeps you laughing but also makes you stop and think. Katie¿s apparently successful adult identity is still riddled with the insecurities of her past to the point that she has a distorted view of the town she grew up in. Paul goes back home to assuage his anguish over losing the only career he¿s ever wanted, basking in the adulation of his old friends but living almost entirely on memories. This is a book about learning to embrace your past without letting it dominate your life. Martin treats us to her deft grasp of the dynamics of family as Katie struggles to help her young nephew Tuck survive the trauma of having a mother, Katie¿s sister Mina, who¿s in and out of rehab. Tuck tugs at your heart and you find yourself rooting for his mother to get her life together. However, Martin does not minimize the difficulties of such a task, either for Mina or her family, making the book even more emotionally compelling. THE PENALTY BOX gives us everything than Deirdre Martin does best: witty, laugh-out-loud dialogue, a hero we fall madly in love with, a heroine to root for, and plenty of emotion. I read this book in one day!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2006

    A delight

    Katie Fisher is back in her old hometown for a year to write a book about sports and the male identity. She had no intentions of going down memory lane. But her mom talks her into going to her old High School reunion. High school was not a good time for Katie, she was overweight, a brainiac and lived on the wrong side of town. However now she is a topnotch professor, has lost the weight and can afford anything. Katie doesn¿t expect to literally run into the high school jock, Paul van Dorn. Paul van Dorn is back in Didsbury after one to many concussions sidelines his promising NHL career permanently. He had opened a bar called The Penalty Box and is reliving his glory days with the Blades. Paul has agreed to be a coach to the youth hockey team that Katie¿s nephew Tuck is a member. Both Katie and Paul have issues from their past and present to get past. Katie¿s main concern is for her nephew that her mom is helping to raise while her sister is in rehab. This concern leads her to take an active role in Tucks life and putting her in almost daily contact with Paul. Paul and Katie realize they have a connection and start an affair. But while Paul wants to celebrate it, Katie wants to keep it quiet. Can these two overcome their past to forge a future? The Penalty Box is another jewel by Deirdre Martin. Her books take hold of your heart from page one and you are drawn in long after the story is over. Katie and Paul feel like people you would like to know and their problems are real life ones. It¿s another keeper.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2006

    Fun, fast-paced and witty! I loved this book!

    The last time I was as excited as I am now about the release of Deirdre Martin¿s ¿The Penalty Box,¿ was at the start of this NHL season, after the dreadful year-long lockout! However, you don¿t have to be a sports fan, or know spit about hockey (the heroine certainly didn¿t!) to enjoy this book! I read this book as fast as I could and enjoyed it so much, that I had to go back for an instant and much slower re-read! Katie Fisher is a college professor who has returned to her hometown for a year long paid sabbatical to write a book. While at home, she reluctantly attends her ten year high school reunion. Her reluctance is a result of her agonizing overweight teenage years. At the gala she is reunited with old ¿friends,¿ tormentors and an old crush. The ex-crush, Paul van Dorn, is a pro-hockey player who has just retired, albeit not by his choice. Katie and Paul are both at the brink of major life changes and dealing with the myriad of emotions that arrive with such situations. They share an undeniable attraction to one another, but making a relationship work is not as easy as it might seem. Life has pushed them both through a full circle and back to their hometown¿ a very small town, with tongues and overgrown teenage terrors¿ The book is touching, but fun, fast-paced, and incredibly well written. Between the great story, a charming cast of characters and refreshing twists to what could have otherwise easily been a predicable tale, this book is more real-life like than you¿d expect. The hero might have been a superstar, but he is a normal guy in the book with issues that are neither too far-fetched, nor tabloid material. The heroine is witty enough to rival Austen¿s immortal Lizzie Bennett¿ Really!

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Fans will enjoy this fine sports romance.

    Psychology Professor Katie Fisher is on a leave of absence from Vermont¿s Fallenfield College working on a book on professional team sports. She is staying at her mom¿s home in Didsbury, Connecticut a town she hates ever since she was an obese brainy outcast in high school. Also at mom¿s place is Katie¿s nephew nine years old Tuck whose mother is in rehab.----- At her tenth anniversary high school reunion Katie, explains her study to former NHL legend Paul van Dorn he agrees to be interviewed. The interview goes well until she mentions his forced retirement due to injury. He ends the interview. Paul coaches the Squirt Squad Tuck is on the team. He takes Katie on a picnic. A few days later after dinner, they make love, but Katie demands their relationship be kept secret so as to not harm Tuck.----- When his team loses, Paul works the team too hard. Katie tells him to ease up on them. Not long afterward Paul insists he loves her, but ends their relationship because she is a snob. One of them will have to skate towards the goal if they are to score the hat trick of love, marriage and family.----- Deirdre Martin¿s latest hockey romance stars delightful lead protagonists especially Katie, who ¿smoothly handles her dieting and a strong support cast. The story line scores because of the youth hockey subplot that bring out the differing attitudes between Katie and Paul while spotlighting the little leagues. Though a spoiled selfish villainess acts like she is still in high school and when marginally ¿hip checked¿ not even into the boards vanishes, fans will enjoy this fine sports romance.----- Harriet Klausner

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 18, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 47 Customer Reviews

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