I just met the girl of my dreams. Megan Davenport is funny and smart, and she's as much of an insomniac as I am. She's also my team captain's little sister, which I only found outafterour passionate kiss. Megan is completely off-limits-her brother makes that very clear-and I know better than to think I can keep a relationship going during hockey season anyway. But that doesn't mean we can't be late-night friends, right? The only problem is, love makes you do crazy things, like breaking all the rules.
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Crazy Pucking Love
A Taking Shots Novel
By Cindi Madsen, Alycia Tornetta
Entangled Publishing, LLCCopyright © 2016 Cindi Madsen
All rights reserved.
Me + new living situation + college classes - everyone all up in my business = endless opportunities and the chance for a whole new, stronger me.
Me + no longer holding back who I am + regaining control of my life = happier me.
Me + making mathematical equations out of my life instead of finishing unpacking = procrastination level: expert.
The excitement coursing through me made it hard to focus, and before I seriously finished unpacking and arranging my things in my new dorm room, my brain needed to reduce all of those thoughts to the most simple equation, because math nerds like me loved that kind of thing.
Me + Boston College = a fresh start
For two years I'd wanted to escape from my life in general, but I especially wanted to get away from toxic friendships and never-ending gossip, and out of the living situation with my aunt, who couldn't be any more clear that she wished she hadn't gained custody of me after my parents' death. Don't get me wrong, I was grateful for everything she did for me, but living under a roof with her was oppressive, not to mention extremely lonely.
Loneliness shouldn't be an issue here, I thought as I glanced around the tiny dorm room. The place was considerably more cramped than my former residences. I'd be sleeping about ten feet away from my roommate every night — or at least I'd be attempting to, as sleep and I weren't on good terms right now, and hadn't been in quite some time.
The white wall I'd hung my corkboard on had obviously seen many, many coats of paint through the years, the carpet was the flat kind that'd be itchy to lie on — not that I'd ever actually lie on it, because gross — and the closet could only accommodate about a fourth of my clothes and shoes, and that was after shoving it so full there'd probably be a jack-in-the-box effect whenever I opened it.
While my new digs didn't exactly scream homey, they did scream freedom and endless possibilities.
I took a deep breath of air, and when it smelled more like staleness and stuffy boxes than opportunity, I cracked a window. The January air held a chill that made me reach for my jacket and zip it all the way up. The ends of my hair caught in the plastic teeth, and I lost a few strawberry-blond strands in the process of tugging it loose — luckily I had more than enough hair to spare a lock or two.
I glanced over the grounds, watching the people milling around campus. People who didn't know who I was, or who my family was, or all the drama that had surrounded me for ... well, as long as I could remember, but especially the past two years.
I did it! I managed to graduate high school early and get out of New Hampshire. I did a fist pump, then swung my hair around and added a booty shimmy.
"Oh my gosh, I'm going to catch pneumonia in here. It's freezing."
I turned to face my new roommate, Vanessa, who of course had a guy with her, because having only one person witness my booty dance wouldn't be embarrassing enough. She and I had met earlier today, and while I'd hoped to click with my new roomie, so far it'd been more forced encounters of the awkward kind. Apparently her former roommate had cracked under the pressure last semester, and that was why this slot had opened up.
I hope my bed's not cursed. That's the last thing I need for my fresh start.
The side of me trying out the whole optimism thing pretended the change of scenery would fix my horrible insomnia, but with all the stress that'd come along with higher-level classes and adjusting to my new life, I knew that'd be pretty much impossible. I won't crack. I can't.
The window screeched as I forced it closed and secured the latch. My other disadvantage was starting spring semester instead of fall, since most people already belonged to cliques. But once I'd decided on this course of action as my best plan of escape, it'd taken some time to convince my aunt to let me pass go — otherwise known as skipping senior year, studying for and attaining my GED, and then jumping right into college a semester early.
Once my brother, Beckett, had seen how much I wanted it, he helped me apply and then enroll, despite Aunt Tessa giving it a month before I quit it, the way I did everything. By everything, she meant all the other things I'd used to try to fill the void in my life after my parents' death, before realizing that until I got away from my past, I couldn't truly start my future.
I glanced at my corkboard, where my Fresh Start Checklist hung, although with my roommate in here, I wondered if it'd be better to put it in a less conspicuous place.
But seeing it every day is what'll help ensure I stay on track.
"What's the deal with this tower o' boxes? I thought you'd be done unpacking by now." Vanessa squeezed her super skinny body through the narrow alleyway. When I'd tried to do the same, I knocked into the desk, and I was sure I'd have a bruise on my hip bone to show for it.
The deal was that the stuff in those boxes didn't fit anywhere. "I'm getting there." I just have to stop trying to find the perfect equation for my new life and cut back on the celebratory dances. "But I'm afraid the only way I'm going to find room for them is a shrinking charm."
I waved my hand at them. "Reducio." I shrugged. "Dang, I really hoped that'd work."
When Vanessa tilted her head and looked at me like I'd sprouted a unicorn horn, I realized I might need to keep the Harry Potter references to myself. Then my Fresh Start Checklist caught my eye, and number one jumped out at me.
1. No more holding back who I am to fit in
Then again, I might need to ease Vanessa into who I was. Random information just stuck in my head and popped out of my mouth, usually at the most inopportune time. It wasn't like I'd memorized every Harry Potter spell one night when I was bored and didn't have anywhere to go or anything. Just, like, half of them, and it was at a time when I often daydreamed about wielding magic and escaping to Hogwarts so I wouldn't have to face everyone at school anymore. And that was before I'd learned how bad things could really be.
But I digress.
"Don't worry," I said to Vanessa as I moved over to my boxes and opened the cardboard flaps of the top one. "That was just a joke, but I'll take care of them for reals. I just might have to rearrange some things."
No amount of arranging would make room for three boxes worth, and I'm pretty sure she knew that as well as I did. I'd even mentally drawn up schematics for hanging plastic containers from the ceiling, but I didn't have the materials, and the ceilings were low enough I worried I'd end up knocking myself out on one.
Beckett convinced me the dorms, where I'd be surrounded by girls my age and get a feel for campus, would be a good experience for me. We'd both agreed living together would be a disaster. Not only did I not want to get in the way of his and his girlfriend Lyla's sleepover fun, but he was crazy overprotective, and he would greatly disapprove of — and do his best to impede — number five.
5. Find a guy with boyfriend potential
a. Likes me for me
b. Common interests
c. Understands me — or at least makes an effort to
d. Great sense of humor
e. Makes an effort to be with me
I hoped to meet someone who would help combat the lonely, depressed feelings that occasionally tried to take over so I could have my own fun — after he was properly vetted, of course. When it came to life, I'd decided to start living more with my heart. When it came to love, I'd decided to go at it from a more logical angle. Which probably sounded backward, but I had the two flipped for the past few years and wrong decisions had definitely been made.
With the right qualifications, I was sure I could find a great guy who would be interested in more than hooking up. If I discarded logic — and statistics — I'd hold out for the mythical one. The type of love found in everything from novels to movies and TV shows to the comic books I adored. But I knew there was a difference between fiction and real life, and I was still a bit young for the happily-ever-after stage. Which was why I was looking more for someone I could snuggle up with at the end of the day. Someone to be a reprieve from life on hard days, and to share in my happiness on the good days. No false expectations, but no more crushing loneliness, either.
Although, for the record, I was mostly here for number two.
2. Start working on my math degree, exact field TBD, probably with an emphasis in engineering Obviously, the degree was a long-term goal, one that'd take me four years of hard work to achieve, which was why starting ASAP was so important to me.
When I glanced at the guy hovering in the doorway like a silent sentinel, Vanessa said, "That's Justin. Justin, this is my new roommate."
I lifted my hand in a small wave, then felt kind of stupid about the wave, but it was too late to take it back. "I'm Megan."
All I got in return was a head bob, so I returned my attention to the box of shoes I'd been halfheartedly sorting through. I closed up the top and stuck it on my desk, hoping it'd stay there despite the uneven surface of notebooks and pens still in their plastic packages, and then kicked the other two boxes underneath, as far as they would go.
I'm going to have to take them over to Beckett's apartment tomorrow. He probably didn't realize his place was going to end up doubling as my storage unit, but with enough pouting and pleading, he'll let it slide.
Maybe he'd also give me my own key, so that if Vanessa didn't thaw, I could escape to his place while he was at hockey practice, and give both her and myself some extra breathing room.
Vanessa peeled off her shirt while her — boyfriend? — chewed on a hangnail. He didn't move when her curly, dark hair caught in a button, and I almost offered her help, but she worked it free. Boyfriend or not, I'd hope any guy I stripped in front of would notice instead of look completely bored.
Should I add "wants to see me naked" under my boyfriend potential subheading? I mean, I want more of a friendship relationship with a lot of trust, but I want passion in the mix, too.
Not everything needed to be put on the list, though, and that one was obvious. It was also pretty much my last boyfriend's only goal, which hadn't worked out so well for me in the end.
My roommate pulled on a dressier cream-colored top that would totally wash me out but looked amazing with her bronze skin, and turned around. The smile I gave her probably looked way too forced, but her expression softened. Her gaze moved toward Mr. Unimpressed and Silent at the door, then slowly returned to me. "Justin and I are headed to the Quad if you want to come."
"There's a party there most weekends," Vanessa said. "They're usually pretty fun."
A college party? On my first night at college? I knew it would be ultimately uncool to squee and do another booty dance, so I kept a calm facade while my internal organs went to celebrating. "Yeah, that'd be awesome. Give me a minute to change?"
* * *
I hadn't seen Vanessa and Justin in a while — and the last time I had, they'd been grinding on the dance floor. I hadn't wanted to follow them around like a forlorn puppy, and while I'd been to plenty of parties before, that was what I felt like. An abandoned puppy completely out of her element.
I tried to dance by myself, but I felt self-conscious despite telling myself I was being bold. Brave. And that I totally knew how to bust a move.
Surrounded by a sea of people, and I still felt lonely. Story of my life, and the fact that it hadn't magically changed made my happy vibes about my newfound freedom and my first college party fade.
You knew it wasn't going to be easy. It's going to take time to meet people and find friends you click with.
I'd forgotten that I wasn't especially good at meeting people, though — it'd been years since I'd attempted it. Back in junior high I flew my nerd flag high and proud, but in the name of survival, I'd conformed in high school to fit in with the crowd. While all I'd wanted was a chance to start over as my actual self, taking on a party solo was another thing entirely.
I pulled out my phone and scrolled through my contacts. I could call Beckett's girlfriend and ask her to come help — she'd be a good wingwoman. And bonus, Lyla actually got me, weird jokes, random factual outbursts, and all. In fact, she was one of the reasons I'd decided to dig down deep, find the person I used to be before I cared what everyone else thought, and let that girl free.
But since she and Beckett had been apart over Christmas break, they were probably enjoying their reunion, and they'd no doubt be at that for quite some time. Plus, then he'd come along and throw shade at every guy I talked to. Not the best way to start any relationship, possible flirting interest or friend.
I can do this. But maybe I should start with number three before I attempt flirting and guys in general.
3. Make good, not-fake friends, who'll have my back instead of stab it
I approached a brunette girl who looked about as lost as I did. "You here alone?"
Crap. Did that sound creepy? Or like I was hitting on her? Neither was what I was aiming for. "My roommate's here, but with her boyfriend. I'm Megan."
A hint of hesitance lingered in her posture, but apparently my not psycho, I promise smile convinced her to take a chance. "Jenna."
Okay, now play it cool ...
The dartboard in the corner caught my eye. I'd passed a room with a beer pong tournament going on, but I wasn't quite bold enough to jump in and call next game there. I'd probably grab a drink eventually, but for now I wanted to meet a couple of people sober, when I could semi-control what popped out of my mouth. "Want to play a game of darts?"
Jenna slowly unwrapped her arms from around her waist. "Sure."
As we played, I found out that she was a freshman majoring in art.
"I like your earrings," she said, right as I was about to toss a dart. "Are they heavy?"
"Thanks." I reached up and ran my fingers over the large silver triangles. The last time I'd worn them, one of my supposed friends asked why I was wearing doorknockers on my ears, but I loved kitschy jewelry, and the bigger the better. "Kind of, but as long as I'm not wearing them for, like, eight hours straight, I'm good."
Without fully turning, I tossed my dart. The second it left my fingers I realized someone was walking through the line of fire, but it was too late. "Watch —"
The dart smacked into the side of the guy's head but thankfully bounced off instead of sticking into the skin. Still, I rushed to him, my tongue tripping over the apology as my face heated. "Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry! I didn't see you there until it was too late, and I'm sorry. I'm so, so sorry."
Rubbing the side of his head, he bent down, picked up the dart, and turned to fully face me. "I didn't realize anyone actually played on that board. Next time I'll know better than to walk in front of it without looking out for a girl with a mean throwing arm."
I froze, a deer in holy-hot-guy headlights. He had deep brown eyes and a ridiculously sexy scruffy face. A blue, backward baseball cap covered most of his dark hair, which looked to be on the longer side judging from the strands sticking out the back and brushing his collar.
He lifted the dart higher, and his eyebrows arched. "Did you want it back? Or was I the unknowing bull's-eye, and you just won?"
"I think I just won," I said, unfortunately out loud, and way too wistful sounding. "I mean ..." I glanced back toward Jenna, but apparently she'd abandoned me to deal with the embarrassing situation myself, because she was long gone. Guess we weren't destined to be BFFs after all. "Did I say I was sorry yet?"
"You did." He ran his gaze down me, just a quick up and down, but it made my breath lodge in my throat. One corner of his mouth lifted. "Several times, in fact. But I'm fine — I've had worse hurled at my head before."
Excerpted from Crazy Pucking Love by Cindi Madsen, Alycia Tornetta. Copyright © 2016 Cindi Madsen. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.5 stars — While I originally did get this one from NetGalley, I procrastinated on it so long, I actually bought my own copy… I loved this one so much because I loved both characters. Dane was everything I was hoping for, damaged but also funny, sweet, and caring…and suffering from a little bit of stupid (not academically, but decision-making-wise). He also suffered from “deciding he knows what’s best for others and making decisions for them”-itis, not just with Megan but with others as well. And normally that doesn’t really work for me, but it fit with who his character was, and the past that shaped him. I was a bit disappointed that we didn’t get some closure with his family…I think that’s one area where all the books in this series are a little weak. They introduce background stories, but they don’t give resolution to them. I’m a reader that likes to know it all and gain closure in all things. Megan was so my kind of girl. She was insecure, but trying to be more confident and accepting of herself. I could identify with her, right down to her love of math (though I went into Comp Sci and not Engineering, there is a rivalry). She had her own struggles, between trying to convince herself that she could settle for less, and trying to live up (or rather down) to those expectations. She actually made me groan sometimes, b/c it was so obvious that she was fooling herself and that things were obviously not going to work out as she’d wanted them to. In some ways she was being just like the stereotype of girls who claim one thing and do another, but when you see the strength of her connection with Dane, it feels different somehow. I ached for her, and her doubts, and just how freaking adorable she was. I LOVED that while Megan struggled with her insecurities, and her progress might have been slow at times, I could understand that some of that came with age and experience. And she truly did wobble her way towards becoming a stronger person on her own, and I loved watching her develop other strong relationships (her friendships with Lyla, Whitney and to my surprise Vanessa!). The killer for this one was the two of them together. They had SOOOOO much chemistry, and I’m not just talking the steamy kind (though hooweee, right from the first kiss). But more important than all that, I felt their friendship chemistry! The way they interacted with each other, they just lit me up and gave me tummy butterflies. While this isn’t the last book in the series, I read them out of order so it’s *my* last book. One thing I love about this series is that it features 4 very smart heroines, but not the same kind of smart. Yay brains!! They were all very different heroines, but they were all inspiring in their own right. I wouldn’t have minded if the heroes had had some better academics, or it was clearer how they ended up balancing school with sport (especially given how both Hudson and Dane struggled)…but at least we end on a high with smarty-pants Ryder (in the next book). So yeah. Another thoroughly entertaining book in this series, and it just made me want to go back and reread Confessions to finish things off.
Although i liked the book i didn't really love the fact the Dane has this hero complex and he has to be responsible for everyones pr oblems. I also thought Megan came off as a little more needy then i would have prefered. I thought Whitney and Lyla where a lot more independent.
Love Dane and MEGAN
This book was ok. Not my favorite in the series. I liked Dane and Megan together and I liked that I was able to catch up with the other couples. However, the repetitiveness of Dane's misguided guilt and overwhelming sense that he was responsible for EVERYONE grew tiresome. I started skipping pages just to get to some dialogue. I would still recommended as part of the series.
Crazy Pucking Love is the third book in the Taking Shots series and features hockey player Dane Kowalski and Megan Davenport, the smart little sister of Beckett (from the first book). Dane and Megan suffer from insomnia, and are soon friends that help each other study. They soon become friends and their chemistry is off the charts! Both Dane and Megan have complicated histories that influence how their relationship plays out. I fell in love with both main characters and was happy to be a witness to their relationship. Crazy Pucking Love is one of the best New Adult novels I have read this year and I eagerly await another book by Cindi Madsen.
College hockey is the background theme to this third story in the Taking Shot's series, combined with the forbidden romance trope of a player (in more ways than one) falling for his teammate's sister. Beckett, who was the hero in Getting Lucky Number Seven knows that his teammate Dane is trying to make up for some mistakes he's made in the past but it still doesn't mean he wants him hanging around his younger sister Megan who is just starting at the same school. Little does he know that they already met at a party and had an instant connection, before they knew each other's real identities. Now that they know, Dane is determined to keep Megan strictly in the friend zone - plus he really needs to concentrate on hockey. But having a class together, and keeping their friendship going soon results in them being unable to deny their attraction. A secret friends with benefits fling might satisfy them both for a while but for how long with they be able to keep their relationship a secret and their feelings from becoming more serious? I really enjoyed this story! The first two stories in the series were equally fun and flirty and this one follows in those footsteps. For a new college student, Megan has a good head on her shoulders and while she appreciates her big brother looking out for her, she also wants to have a chance to live her own life too. To that end, even knowing that he's made her off limits to Dane, it doesn't stop her from pursuing their friendship and eventually more. Dane is caught between falling for Megan and not letting down his friend. Plus the pressure of doing well at school and for his hockey team in order to have a career for when school is finished is equally important. There are some sexy scenes between Megan and Dane as they move from friendship to more, and the college atmosphere is well written as the background to their sweet romance. Their relationship goes through some ups and downs but they do get a lovely happy for now ending, appropriate for their stage in life, once all is said and done. If you like new adult sports romances and interesting and engaging characters, this series should be on your shelf.
3.5 stars--CRAZY PUCKING LOVE is the third installment in Cindi Madsen’s contemporary, new adult TAKING SHOTS romance series focusing on the members of a Boston college hockey team. This is hockey player Dane Kowalski , and college student Megan Davenport’s story line. CRAZY PUCKING LOVE can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Megan is Beckett Davenport’s (Getting Lucky Number Seven #1) younger sister-and as such is off limits to the guys on his team. Told from dual first person points of view (Dane and Megan) CRAZY PUCKING LOVE follows the building romance and relationship between Dane Kowalski and eighteen year old Megan Davenport. Unbeknownst to Megan, Dane is a member of the college hockey team- a team in which her brother Beckett is a member and his over protective alpha attitude has placed Megan in the ‘hands off’ category as it pertains to his fellow team players. Dane’s attraction to Megan finds our hero pushing away the young woman with whom he is falling in love leaving a heartbroken Megan to deal with the anxiety of another failed relationship. Megan’s ‘Fresh Start Checklist’ - a bucket list of things to accomplish while at college including finding a guy with boyfriend potential -begins to fall apart when Dane walks away because of his past and Megan’s brother’s warning. Dane and Megan’s backstories are heartbreaking and full of angst and lost opportunities. Megan’s parents were killed years before, and Dane’s parents were all but absent throughout most of his life. To escape his home town Dane walked away and never looked back but recent events find our hero battling more guilt than his secret relationship with Megan Davenport. The $ex scenes are mostly implied reading more like a YA story line than a new adult formula. Several of the previous story line couples plays secondary and supporting roles including Beckett Davenport and Lyla Wilder (Getting Lucky Number Seven #1) as well as Hudson Decker and Whitney Porter (Anatomy of a Player #2). CRAZY PUCKING LOVE is a bit of a frustrating story line in that Dane is reluctant to cross an invisible line as it pertains to his relationship with Megan, and his friendship with teammate Becket Davenport. For all intents and purposes the situational anxiety was unfortunate in that I was disappointed in the overall feel of the story. The push and pull of the relationship was tempered by the possibility of Beckett’s discovery, and in this, their ‘dirty little secret’ felt more like an affair than a growing love. CRAZY PUCKING LOVE is a story of ‘forbidden love’; a young woman on her own for the first time falling for an older man who is friends with her over-protective brother. The premise is entertaining but maddening; the characters are caught between friendship and love; the romance is a struggle towards a happily ever after.
I voluntarily reviewed this ARC from Netgalley in exchange for a honest review.I loved the storyline,and characters but I really love this cover.I will definitely recommend this book to my friends.
I have been waiting for Megan's story since meeting her in Lucky Number Seven and it was definitely worth the wait! Megan Davenport is ready for her fresh start at Boston College. She's finished high school early ands come up with a list of things that she wants to do with her clean slate. She's determined not to make the same mistakes she did with her fake friends in high school. At one of her first college parties, she hits a hot guy with a dart in the head and sparks fly. A shame he's on the hockey team with her brother and she's been labeled off-limits. Dane Kawolski is looking forward to a semester without any kind of drama. Things at home are falling apart, he's decided to change his major for a more satisfying backup career should the NHL not work out, and he's had enough of the strings that come with relationships. Until he meets Megan. He knows she's off-limits but it seems like everything is determined to put her in his path. Maybe they can just be friends.... I love this series!! I wasn't a huge fan of Dane after the events of Anatomy of a Player but boy did he redeem himself in this one. I loved that Megan was able to stand up for herself, not just with Dane but all around. All of the things that she's been through has made her an amazingly strong woman who, even at such a young age, knows what she wants and sets a plan to get there. I am really looking forward to Ox's story!!!
First book I've read from this author and am quite impressed. The h is a quirky adorable character who is strong and vulnerable at the same time. I enjoyed the way the author was able to develop each character and create such an interesting and sweet story. Good connection and chemistry between the main characters. No dreaded cliffhangers and a great HEA. I received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review via NetGalley.
Megan Davenport is ready to take this new experience she has been given by both hands and fully embrace everything it has to offer. Coming to college was her way out, a way to recreate herself and live life on her terms, and she starts if off with a bang... by literally banging a handsome hockey player in the head with a dart! The moment she meets Dane she is taken with him, he is gorgeous, witty and she quickly finds they have a lot in common...but unfortunately he also happens to be her brother's teammate which puts a screeching halt to everything before it even has a chance to get started. But no matter how hard these two try and avoid each other life keeps putting them on the same path...and boy oh boy what a path it is!! The instant I started this story I was hooked, I mean what is not to love about a determined woman looking for a brand new start, and a sexy hockey player wanting to help her discover it!! There is just something about a forbidden romance that really turns up the heat, and keeps me on the edge of my seat in anticipation for the moment when the heat finally wins out... and I have to say Ms. Madsen did not disappoint with this one, it had LOTS of heat!! I also enjoyed the fact that she created a heroine that could hold her own against her suitor, the witty banter between these two was priceless, and made for some REALLY good reading!! This series just keeps getting better with each new installment, I highly recommend you give it a try, Ms. Madsen's hockey players are sure to score a special place in your heart!! I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this title.
This is a great book; this is the third book in the Taking Shots series written by Cindi Madsen. Dean knows that Megan is completely off limits since she is the team captain’s little sister but he can’t resist her. This is a great book with a wonderful story and well developed characters. This book will keep you reading long into the night and you will not want to put this book down until you finish. This was such a great read and full of surprises. I am looking forward to reading the next book by this great author. This book has been provided by the author with no expectations and that in no way influences my review.
4.5 stars Crazy Pucking Love was a fun, sweet, cute and heartwarming read, loved it! The plot was well written and entertaining, I found myself reading it all in one sitting. Watching Dane and Megan come together turnout to be one heck of an emotional rollercoaster. They made me laugh, they frustrated me (looking at you Dane) they made me swoon and broke my heart with their stubbornness before they put it back together with their cuteness and love. And their chemistry? it was smoking! Megan was such a wonderful and endearing character, loved her humor, her honesty and her passion. She had such a big and forgiving heart, I admired her determination to leave her past hurts behind and work at herself to stay in the present and not get swallowed up with negative thoughts. With Dane I had a love/hate relationship going on, just as he was making me swoon, he would take a step back, shut down his feelings for Megan leaving me frustrated and wanting to reach into my iPad to shake him! lol While I totally got/understood why he did it, it did get old after a while. BUT once our boy realised life without Megan was not what he wanted, he was determined to win back Megan's trust and love. And the way he did it left me with a heart full of love, the boy did good ;) The Taking Shots series has been a great read, each book can be read as a standalone and I highly recommend them all!
Four jolly (ice) hockey sticks. When I saw this on NetGalley I didn't realise that I had already read (and loved) the first book in the series. Unaccountably, I have the second book but I haven't read it yet. So this book centres on Megan Davenport, Beckett's little sister who has arrived at Boston College determined to embrace her inner math geek and leave her bad decisions and fake friends behind her. Unfortunately it's not off to a great start, her room-mate hates her, she still has raging insomnia, she doesn't seem to be able to meet any new friends and her brother is looming ominously over anyone who seems to express any interest in her. Dumped by her roomie at her first college party Megan invites another girl to play darts, only to hit a guy in the side of the head with one of her darts. When a drink turns into a great evening with a guy who seems to find her attractive Megan thinks she has hit the boy-lottery until the end of the evening when she gives Dane her number and he realises that Megan is Beckett Davenport's little sister. Yep, Dane is none other than Kowalski, Not only is Megan off-limits, Beckett has specifically warned the guys about her, but Dane is also not considered one of the good guys after the incident in the book I haven't read. So this book hits so many of my favourite tropes it's scary. Hot ice hockey players? Check. Rich girl meets guy from the wrong side of the tracks? Check. Team-mate's little sister? Check. Math geek with quirky habits? Check, check, check. Dane has a lot of guilt he's carrying around and he feels responsible for everyone else, his family, his ex, his team that he is being crushed by it all. He feels he needs to make amends for a whole heap of bad decisions he made since he got to college and messing around with his team-mate's little sister sounds like a whole heap of bad decisions just waiting to drop on his head. I loved Dane and Megan, not having read the second book in the series I don't know just how awful he was in that book, but TBH you don't need to have read either of the previous books to enjoy this one. Quirky trips to off-beat places in Boston, late night coffee and fries at the diner - what's not to love? If you love a good college romance with hot hockey players and math nerds this is definitely the book for you. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Cindi Madsen scores a hat trick with the third book in the Taking Shots series CRAZY PUCKING LOVE. I love this series. In this story, Megan Davenport, the little sister of team captain, Beck Davenport (book one), is a freshman at Boston College. She meets the boy of her dreams, Dane Kowalski, only to discover that he is her brother’s teammate and sworn off-limits. However, Dane and Megan have a class together and are both insomniacs, so they decide that the threat shouldn’t stop them from becoming friends. This contemporary sports romance is suitable for new adults. I like Megan. We met her in book one, when she struggled with her parents’ death and was seeking out negative attention. Now she is starting school at Boston College with a list of positive goal. She wants a fresh start and to be true to herself. She is a sweet girl whom you can’t help but like. I love her geeky side and am glad she chooses to embrace that part of her and not worry about the popular crowd. I found her math equations amusing. I enjoyed learning more about Dane’s character. Dane is Hudson Decker’s (book 2) best friend. The two grew up together in the Bronx. Dane has some issues concerning his ex-girlfriend that he needs to overcome to move forward. He is also worried about his younger sister, Lissa. He is a good guy, that cares about the people that are important to him. I enjoyed the plot. I like how Megan and Dane meet. I like how they hang out at the diner. I thought the part about them both being insomniacs and understanding each other cleaver. I enjoyed the creative ways they spent time together. I love both their geeky sides. The two get each other and are a good fit. Both the characters grow and have obstacles to overcome as individuals and a couple. I enjoyed how the story ended. Cindi Madsen continues to do a phenomenal job with this series. I cannot wait for her next book in the series. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book.
Squeeee !!!!! I love sports romances and I am so excited to have discovered this book and this Author. This story is about Megan Davenport who decided to be her own person and take control of her life. She worked hard to make it to college determined to do what she wants and has made herself a list of goals to achieve. Her first day at school her roommate asks her to go to a party where she meets Dane and after a near oopsie mishap with a dart she meets Dane. There is instant chemistry between the two but Dane has his own issues and doesn’t think a relationship is something he can do. Not only that after their first interaction ending with a hot kiss he discovers that Megan is the sister of his teammate and Captain. She’s off limits!!! This story had me smiling from ear to ear. It was sweet, funny, romantic, sexy and had a little bit of angst. It gave me all the good book feels. I loved the chemistry between the two they seemed to get understand each other so well and developed a friendship along the way. Of course that friendship develops and they find they can’t fight the attraction. When they give in you will be jumping up and down because you wanted them to be together. But what’s a book without a little bit of drama to spike your blood pressure and this book definitely has a little of it. You will find yourself cursing out well at least I did because of the things that get in their way. It will be so worth it though because how it ends will have you swooning. I didn’t realise going into this book that it was the third in the series but luckily it can be read as a standalone so I didn’t feel like I was missing anything by nothing reading books 1 and 2. However you can bet that I will definitely be reading the first 2 books in this series. A fantastic read I am hoping to see more from this series.
Received an advance reader copy from NetGalley in exchange for a fair review I loved this one so so much! For me it had a lot of a nostalgic feeling, it's weird because I didn't experienced anything of it. Still it gave me a good and fluffy feeling. Dane and Megan their meeting was so funny and great, it was a great opening for their friendship. There was a little sexual tension, but that was quickly put in action. Hot and steamy action! Megan also is a very strong person with all the things she went through. Dane is a very good protective brother and carer for his sisters. I always admire that. Their banter was also lot's of fun. This one made me giggle and laugh and swoon. They both have insomnia and that was rare, also it made me wonder because it sounded like fun. Don't get me wrong I know it isn't fun to not sleeping, but their late night meetings were so much fun! It made me think about all the things I would want to do if I had insomnia. I fall in love with them both from the very beginning and I hope you go buy it and fall in love too! This was a new author for me and I'm very thankful for this one! Won't be my last read of her!
Loved this story!! While this is book 3 in the Taking Shots series, you don't have to read the prior two books to enjoy this one. Freshman Megan Davenport is finding life at college very interesting. After a miserable couple of years in high school, she's ready to reinvent herself. Dane Kowalski doesn't let people get too close. His family and the people he left behind when he left for college are enough to worry about. He does want to be a better person though so he plans on this year keeping his head down, playing hard for the team, and studying harder. When he meets the team captain's little sister at an all night diner suffering from insomnia just like he does, he knows he is in trouble. It's been made clear that a hands off policy applies and he doesn't need or want the trouble. Yet he's drawn to Megan like he's never been drawn to a girl before. When what starts as a secret friends with benefits arrangement turns into something much more will he be willing to stay and fight for what he wants?? A fantastic NA read and a book for the must read list. I highly recommend it.
The story of Megan and Dane was good but also frustrating. I loved the writing, all the cast of characters and even the college setting. You've got hunky, hockey players, good friends and minimal other women drama. The frustrating thing is how Dane keeps Megan at arms length throughout the whole story. The only thing that saved Dane for me was he genuinely liked Megan and they were good together. He just thought he wasn't good enough for her and unfortunately, this meant he jerked her around too much. Usually this would make me hate Dane, but he was too likeable to hate. I also liked a few of the single hockey players that I hope the author writes a book for each of them. ARC provided by NetGalley.
ARC Review: Crazy Pucking Love (Taking Shots) by Cindi Madsen Teen angst with a side of adult drama. In the past I have not been a fan of young adult romance but Ms. Madsen may have just changed my mind. Crazy Pucking Love is Gilmore Girls meets 90210. A little light humour to add to the emotional drama and the sensual chemistry between Dane and Megan.
She smiled at her "wanna get ice cream"
Sits, playing with her toys.