Hard Stick: A Breakaway Novel

Hard Stick: A Breakaway Novel

by L.P. Dover
4.3 30

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Overview

Hard Stick: A Breakaway Novel by L.P. Dover

He carries a big stick. And he’s not afraid to use it.

On the ice, I’m Kellan Carter, powerhouse enforcer for the Charlotte Strikers. Off the ice, I’m just a regular guy. The last thing I want is to get mobbed by a bunch of groupies who are only after me for my fame and money. My ideal woman knows how to enjoy a little good, clean fun—and maybe some not-so-clean fun too. That’s the kind of girl I’d never let go.

When Kristen Robinson, the gorgeous, down-to-earth bartender I’ve been crushing on, agrees to let me take her out, I’m thrilled. We have an amazing night together, culminating in the most electrifying kiss of my life—and that’s it. Kristen tells me we can’t see each other again, but I know that kiss meant as much to her as it did to me. What I don’t know is that Kristen has a dangerous secret. . . .

I’ve proved to Kristen that she can trust me with her body and her heart. But when her past comes back to haunt her, I need to prove that she can trust me with her life. And I might have to get my hands dirty after all.

Don’t miss these heartwarming Second Chances romances from New York Times bestselling author L. P. Dover:
CATCHING SUMMER | DEFENDING HAYDEN | INTENDED FOR BRISTOL

Praise for Hard Stick

Hard Stick is a sexy hockey romance that heats up the ice, and the bedroom!”—Sarah Robinson, bestselling author of the Kavanagh Legends series

Hard Stick is the action-packed hockey romance you’ll never forget.”—Addicted2Books

“Loved the storyline, the plot was very developed with some suspense, drama and of course romance, the exact amount to make this book good and interesting.”—Collectors of Book Boyfriends & Girlfriends

“I would 100% recommend this book to anyone who loves a story that has a little bit of everything in it. If you’re looking for a storyline that will suck you in and characters you will fall in love with and want more of, then this is the book to read! . . . Hard Stick is truly a book that is a case of ‘Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover,’ but in the best way possible.”—Book Bitches Blog

“I loved everything about this book. I highly recommend this author.”—Jack of All Trades, Master of None Book Reviews

“You’ll be sucked in from the start and will feel the book hangover before you’re done.”—Seraphim Book Reviews (five stars)

“L. P. Dover did a great job with this book and if you know going into that it has more of a suspenseful love story, you might not be so surprised. I recommend this book. I couldn’t put it down.”—Wicked Love of Books

“I loved this book! A great romantic/suspenseful story with a HEA (and it also involved sports which is always a plus with me). I really liked the author’s style of writing.”—Rebel Spinster (five stars)

Hard Stick may have been my first L. P. Dover novel, but it won’t be my last. I am so excited to see what’s next in the Breakaway series.”—A Novel Glimpse 

“This is a sweet, fun story with suspense and intrigue thrown into the mix to make it a satisfying read. I enjoy everything L. P. Dover writes and I love stories about hockey players, so I was excited to read this and I wasn’t disappointed.”—Cocktails & Books

This ebook includes an excerpt from another Loveswept title.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101967836
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/13/2017
Series: Breakaway , #1
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 5,573
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

L. P. Dover is the New York Times bestselling author of the Second Chances series, the Breakaway series, the Forever Fae series, the Gloves Off series, the Armed and Dangerous series, and a standalone novel, Love, Lies, and Deception. She loves not only to write, but also to play tennis, hike in the mountains, go white-water rafting, and sing. A Southern belle with a former life in periodontics, L. P. Dover lives in North Carolina with her husband and two beautiful girls.

Customer Reviews

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Hard Stick: A Breakaway Novel 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 30 reviews.
SusanReads1 6 months ago
I devour everything written by L.P. Dover. I love her writing and always look forward to curling up with her stories! Kellan is the Captain of the Carolina Strikers. He is a patron at a bar where Kristen works. He has an interest in her, but she seems hesitant and he can't understand why. Kristen has a past she is hiding from and a fear of trusting anyone. She is very hesitant to get involved with a man for several reasons including trusting her judgment. This is a romantic suspense story. I don't want to ruin the story and say too much. I will say one click for a great story that oozes hot athletes, suspense, drama, angst and love! Why no voting buttons? We don'
Anonymous 10 days ago
Great story...more please
Crystal61 3 months ago
I love a hockey story with a heroine who really does not understand hockey but develops a love for the sport and an athlete. Kristen is hiding out, trying to lead a normal life. Kellan is finally looking for more than a one night stand. She tries to keep her distance, but Kellan does not give up and neither do her few friends. Going out for that one date changes her life again and Kristen hopes for an HEA. Together they face danger and a past that comes back to pull them apart. I was not prepared for the twist to this story but enjoyed it very much. I look forward to the next in this series. I received a copy of this story from Netgalley, and this is my unsolicited review.
KristieK 5 months ago
Hard Stick By: LP Dover ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Star Review by Kristie K A hockey romance with a twist, LP Dover delivers a slap shot win with Hard Stick… Kellan Carter rules on the ice. Captain of the Charlotte Strikers hockey team, he knows how to handle his stick…both on and off the ice. But, Kellan is also a good guy, and a gentleman. He doesn’t take home every ice groupie that hits him up, and he lives a much more subdued life than his teammates. Kellan knows what he type of woman he wants, down to earth, sweet, fun, and sexy…everything that bartender Kristen Robinson happens to be, including drop-dead gorgeous and very hard to get. When his persistence pays off and lands him a date, he is determined to earn her trust and extend his luck beyond one encounter. Kristen Robinson chose the wrong guy. Her sweet and innocent nature left her vulnerable to the worst type of predator…those of the heart. Her mistake forced her to leave everything behind, start her life over, and pray that her mistakes don’t follow. Afraid to make the same mistakes twice, Kristen keeps people, especially men, at a distance. She is successfully keeping the sexy hockey players frequenting the bar she tends at arms length, until Kellan Carter breaks through her defenses. He surprises her with his laid back and relaxed demeanor, and the simple, fun, and easy going time they spend together. When Kristen’s past comes back to haunt her, she has to decide if she’s going to let him in…or let him go. I'm not a big hockey fan, but I happen to be a HUGE fan of athletes… ;) I knew I wanted to read Hard Stick when I saw the blurb and cover reveal. That cover is gorgeous…so sexy. And the blurb was sweet and unexpected for a hockey novel. I loved the characters, I cried along with Kristen…felt helpless with Kellan…and swooned with them both. They were easy to love, fun to watch, and well developed. The plot and storyline were different from your typical hockey novel, so unique in their genre. I struggled slightly with the execution of the plot, as there were times when it just seemed to easy…too predictable. That being said, there were some pretty heartbreaking and amazing twists thrown in too. Even though I felt some of it was a bit predictable, the areas that happened too fast or easy, did so with grace and talent. I did enjoy this story, and will definitely read more of Ms. Dover’s work. This was a well earned victory, for sure. Kristie K
froggy29532DC 6 months ago
L.P. Dover is off to a great start with the Breakaway series, Hard Stick was awesome, I couldn't put it down. From the very first page it was full of heartbreak, suspense, intrigue, and very interesting characters. This is the story of Kellan Carter, captain of the Charlotte Strikers hockey team and Kristen Robinson, Interior designer turned bartender. She has secrets, big secrets that could destroy everything and everyone in her life. This book is loaded with twists and turns, happy and sad moments, friends and fun. It made me laugh, cry and want to scream. I cannot wait to read more from the other characters in this book, Dallas in particular. Before you start this book, be sure to get comfortable because you will not want to put it down until the last page has been read. And buckle up Buttercup because it is going to be a wild and exciting ride!!
JWright57 6 months ago
L.P. Dover is a new author to me and I have to ask myself why haven't I read any of her other books. Hard Stick is book 1 in the new Breakaway Series and this is Kellan Carter and Kristen Robinson's story. Kellan is powerhouse enforcer for the Charlotte Strikers Hockey Team, Kristian is the bartender at the bar that the team use and he has crushed on her forever. Kristian agrees to one night with Kellan but will one night be enough , can Kellan get Kristian to trust him not only with her body but with heart as well..... The cover of this book will have you believing this book is all about Hockey, well Hockey does come into this story but the bulk of this story is about Kristen and her secrets and how Kellan the good guy gets her to trust and love again. I really enjoyed this book and I'm looking forward to more in this series
CCarroll 6 months ago
I loved a few things about this book. 1) The story is not what you think. 2) The plot actually had some great twists and interest other than sex and hockey I have enjoyed many books by L.P. Dover and this one was a bit of a surprise with the plot. When the cover leads you to assumptions about the content, you can get hung up on that. We are expecting a sports style read, judging from the gorgeous hunk of body going on. This is Not one and I was so happy about that! This story has a bit of depth and some surprises along the way! Made me enjoy the heck out of this book! That is not to say there is not a lot of sexy heat along the way... oh, there is! But you get so much more with this one. There may be some triggers in this for some. * copy received for review consideration
Anonymous 6 months ago
Hot, sexy, riviting... could not put this story down and makes me want more, more, more...
Sandy-thereadingcafe 6 months ago
3.75 stars--HARD STICK is the first installment in L.P.Dover’s contemporary, adult BREAKAWAY sports, romance series focusing on the men and women of the professional hockey team The Charlotte Strikers. This is team captain Kellan Carter, and bartender/interior designer Kristen Robinson’s story line. Told from dual first person perspectives (Kristen and Kellan) HARD STOCK focuses on Kristen Robinson’s fight for her freedom from a controlling ex. On the run, following the murder of her best friend Cole, Kristen finds herself in Charlotte, North Carolina, falling for the team captain of the Charlotte Strikers. What ensues is the building relationship between Kristen and Kellan, and Kristen’s struggle to stay one step ahead of her past. The relationship between Kristen and Kellan is one of immediate attraction but due to her past, Kristen keeps everyone at a distance fearing the possibility of retribution and revenge. In hiding, with a new identity, Kristen will come face to face with her past-a man who is determined to keep Kristen to himself. The $ex scenes are intimate and passionate without the use of sexually graphic language and text. We are introduced to several members of the Charlotte Strikers- alternate captains Dallas Easton and Braeden Wallace, Coach Carlisle, and rookie Maddox Ledger, as well as Kristen’s friends Brooklyn, Brooklyn’s brother and FBI agents Jason Avery and his wife Aylee; Kellan’s mother Mary, and long suffering father Graham Carter. The requisite evil is all too familiar to our story line couple. HARD STICK is first and foremost a story of suspense as the hockey trope takes a backseat to our heroine’s battle with her past. There is a twist in the story that I suspected early on but a twist, none the less. The premise is entertaining but there are definitely some over the top scenarios as it pertains to the suspense, mystery and take down; the characters are charismatic and colourful; the romance is seductive and provocative. HARD STICK is a dramatic, intense and enjoyable read.
astroyic 6 months ago
Romance and Danger! This was definitely not what I thought it was going to be. With a hot hockey player on the front I didn't expect all the dangerous twists and turns. But it was a great story that pulled me into the drama and kept me on the edge of my seat till the ending. I thought that Kristen and Keelan had great chemistry together and there were some super hot sex scenes. The writing was great. It had a great pace and build. Good drama and tension throughout. Great ending. Great combination of Hotness and emotion. Received a ARC through NetGalley and voluntarily wrote an honest review.
2kasmom 6 months ago
Kristen has a sudden life changing incident occur. She ends up living in another location with a new name. She has had so much upheaval lately that nothing feels right. Not until she meets someone who makes her feel safe and whole again. Kellan has wanted Kristen to give him the time of day for some time. He wants to show her he is no longer the type of guy she thinks he is. He wants someone forever, not just a one night stand. This story is sweet and sexy. I found myself eagerly turning the pages! I loved how charming and protective the leading man is. The hot men that are in this series make me eager for the next installment to come. ***This ARC copy was given by Netgalley and its publishers, in exchange for an honest review only.
micharch 6 months ago
Kellan and Kristen see each other several times per week at the bar Kristen tends bar at. Kellan is a hockey player and goes to the bar with several of his teammates to kick back and relax. Kellan has noticed Kristen for a while but she blows off any type of advance from anyone, especially his teammates. Kristen has been burned in the past and is definitely looking to stay low and try to keep her life a secret. She is on the run from an abusive ex and he has shown he will stop at nothing to get her to be his. Kellan finally wears Kristen down to date him and it goes much better than she thought it would. She knows she has a lot of baggage and weighs how much she can tell him about her past. With no family to be able to help her, she is left to struggle through with the help of a few good friends. Kellan knows she is leery of him, but doesn't realize the extent of it until she begins to let him in. There were definitely some surprises in this book. It keep me reading to see what was going to happen and how it was all going to play out. I did like how Kellan was persistent in showing Kristen he was going to be there for her. Her friends did pull out all of the stops to help her when it was needed. I was at a loss at times though when they didn't have answers that they should have. The plot flowed well and the story line kept moving forward. Overall a good read and I was honored to receive an ARC from NetGalley for an honest review.
Stacie93 6 months ago
Hard stick by LP Dover is a knock-out read!! Kristen and Kellan are from completely different backgrounds but when they meet an interesting story unfolds. Kristen has many secrets in her past. Kellan is a hot shot hockey player. Can Kellan get past all of Kristen's past secrets?? This book is filled with passion, mystery,suspense and hot sex. Pick up this book to see how it all goes down. You won't be disappointed!!
Laura_F 6 months ago
An amazing start to another awesome series by LP Dover! Kellan, the star of the Carolina Strikers, has been asking Kristen out only to be turned down every time. Kristen moved back to North Carolina after running from her past. When the decision is made to finally move on, she decides to finally say yes to Kellan. What follows is an amazing relationship and tons of twists. There were so many surprises in this story and I don't want to give anything away. This book sucked me in and kept me on the edge of my seat until the end. Kellan was so much more than what he seemed at the beginning. He's protective, loyal, and supportive. Once Kristen let him in, their relationship was near perfection. Kristen has been through a lot but was able to remain positive and happy. I loved the cameos by some of my favorite characters from other series. There were so many emotions felt in this book that was light on the sports and heavy on the drama. I can't wait to see what's next for this series!! *This is my voluntary review of an advanced reader copy*
LilleyLoohLah 6 months ago
An interesting story wth some strong characters. Kristen is in a relationship with a rich, besotted and obsessed businessman (basically he's a bit of a whacko). When his craziness comes to the surface Kristen has no other option but to change her identity and start her life over again. With the help of the FBI she starts afresh and is getting into the swing of small town living when she finally succumbs to the charms of Kellan carter, the Captain of the hockey team. Kellan (and a few of his team mates) have been pursuing Kristen for almost a year, she works in the local bar they frequent. She has however, been putting off there advances, mainly due to the fact that she was stereotyping them. Things are looking up for Kristen, but just when she started to let her guard down, her past comes back to haunt her in the worst way. With some cringeworthy twists and turns, some sexy scenes with a super hot, super perfect hockey player, I found this story highly enjoyable. I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Momscookingthebooks 6 months ago
This is the first time I have read anything by this author and I enjoyed her writing style and I definitely will check out more of her work, however, I am torn about this book. Did I like it? Yes I did. So what’s the catch? I thought it was a sports romance, but it’s more like romantic suspense, so I was taken off guard and it wasn’t what I was expecting. It did have some hockey and about Kellen’s team, but a lot more going on than just a typical sports romance. So see, not really a bad thing. The first four chapters were about Kristen and the set up for her meeting Kellen. The characters are developed and they have great chemistry. This book doesn’t rush their romance and there are twists and turns that I didn’t see coming, which is a good surprise. The story kept me involved until the end. I really did enjoy this book and look forward to more in this series. I don’t want to give you any more info as you really need to delve into this book for yourself. If you want a great romance with a lot of drama, suspense and hot hockey players, then this is the book for you.
nelriv 6 months ago
Received and ARC for fair review for netgalley. I enjoyed book, totally fell in love with Kellan, and did like Kristen. I was so broken hearted over Cole, but loved how Kristen did not forget him, but constantly remembered that he was a loyal friend til the end. Mitch was a total nutcase, but it enjoyable to read the lengths he went thru with his crazy obsession. It is always heartwarming to read about a group of friends that are there for you, and Kristen had that. I can't wait for next book, I am hoping it is Dallas and that reporter.
LoraJ 6 months ago
4 out of 5 stars I enjoyed the start of a new series from Ms. Dover. I think that she has the ability to add just enough suspense to a book to keep you on edge while you’re swooning over the hero and only wanting the very best to come about for the heroine. Kristen’s past is really bad - like she’s hiding from it, it’s so bad. Kellen is a famous hockey star who doesn’t really act all that famous at all. They’ve known each other for quite some time, but Kristen sees him as a cocky sports star while Kellen would love to know more about the hot bartender. I feel like the book had some really good character development. Both Kellen and Kristen go through some changes as they get to know each other a little better. The “extra” characters really bring a new level to the story as well. There was also a good level of suspense that led to the solution which felt like it came at the right time and pace in the story. I enjoyed this book very much and can’t wait to read more about the Charlotte Strikers! *** I voluntarily read an advance copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review ***
bhillson83 6 months ago
As a fan of Sports Romance, especially anything to do with hockey, I immediately want to read. I have also been very fortunate to read other novels by L.P. Dover, who by the way is an amazing author. She did not disappoint with her latest book, as it is full of action, romance, suspense and a fantastic story line. Often when you read a sports romance, they have the same type of story line, however, Dover strays away with the typical story line and goes for something much more exciting. Add a little bit of suspense and a revengeful ex, it keeps you on your toes .... I loved Kellan, as he was a strong, confident leading man who knew what he wanted .... Kristen. Kristen was always looking behind her, afraid of what was to come, until she met Kellan who showed her it was okay to love again. Dover does a great job in creating chemistry between the two and creating romance that never felt forced. I loved both Kristen and Kellan and felt that their story is unique to what is out there in the Sports Romance genre. If you love sports romance as much as I do and are looking for a great summer read, Hard Stick is the book for you. Dover doesn't disappoint with the constant action, chemistry, suspense and romance that brings the book to life. The characters are well developed, the story line goes at a perfect pace and Dover's writing is flawless. Definitely a must read and addition to your To-Be-Read-Shelf.
ljtljtljt 6 months ago
After ogling over the cover and reading the book blurb, I just had to request Hard Stick from new to me author L.P. Dover. Much to my surprise, the story did not revolve around the sport of hockey. The hockey element took a backseat to the drama and angst surrounding the heroine of the story, interior designer Kristen Robinson. The hero is Kellan Carter, devoted boyfriend and team captain of the Charlotte Strikers. After graduating from college, Kristen and her best friend Cole decide to stay in Boston and pursue their respective occupations. Kristen's career takes off after she successfully decorates Mitchell Blackwell's office building. Her love life flourishes as well, since she and Mitchell are in a relationship. Kristen has no idea that Mitchell is a mafioso type character, and that his power of influence is massive. Mitchell is an amazingly possessive individual and unfortunately, Kristen becomes his latest victim to control and manipulate. Luckily, Kristen is able to escape Mitchell's clutches and start a new life, in a new place, under a new name. Her friends, who happen to be FBI agents, keep her safe while Mitchell continues to search for her. A year after her abrupt disappearance, Kristen is declared dead, and Mitchell stops his search. During this time Kristen is working as a bartender, which is where she meets Kellan. Kellan has tried for a year to get Kristen to go out with him, but she keeps turning him down. Feeling safe for the first time in a long time, Kristen goes out with Kellan, and they become exclusive. Kristen is happy and so is Kellan, that is until Mitchell shows up and almost destroys them. Whew, what a rush. This book is a continuous roller-coaster ride from beginning to end. I liked how Ms. Dover evolved Kristen's character; making her stronger both inside and out through physical workouts and sparring. Kristen's resolve while dealing with so much tragedy and loneliness is beyond admirable. Her relationship with Kellan is hot and Ms. Dover does an excellent job of creating their passion for each other. Overall, this is exciting story that twists and turns in all the right places. This is the first book in the author's brand new series Breakaway, and it can be enjoyed as a standalone. Complimentary copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley.
BGnMS1 6 months ago
Slash to the Heart Ms. Dover brought a whole new story to life that had surprises. She even included some beloved characters from her other books. ***given an ARC in exchange for honest review***
Rhondaz 6 months ago
5 HARD STICK STARS!!! Wow, is all I can say while I am trying to catch my breath. This book kept me on the edge of my seat with all the action, hot steamy sex, sexy hockey players and awesome characters. Kellan is every girls dream man, hockey player, sweet, fun and super sexy. Kristen is beautiful, sweet, fun and got messed up with the wrong guy. These two come from messed up lives and I loved watching them work through their problems together. L.P. Dover is one of my favorite authors with her fantastic storytelling. I highly recommend this book to all readers. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book from publisher via NetGalley.
mamalovestoread22 6 months ago
When Kristen met Mitchell she thought she had found the perfect man, but little by little he started to show his true colors, and they weren't very pretty. He was borderline obsessive, very controlling, and Kristen knew if she didn't dump him soon things were only going to get worse. So, she turned to a friend and he helped her get rid of Mitchell, but she knew dumping him wasn't going to be enough, she needed to flee town fast. So she packed her bags and left him behind, but for how long? With her friends help she is able to begin to start a new life, and with time has even started to let her guard down, and consider letting love back in again... but can she find a way to trust again? The moment Kellan walks into his favorite hangout and spots the beauty behind the counter he is taken with her, she on the other hand doesn't seem to be interested in anything he has to offer. But he isn't willing to give up so easily, he figures he'll take his time with her, and slowly work his way into her good graces. His friends have another plan though, and push him to ask her out, and throw down a bet, one that he hopes he will come out on the winning end of... that is if he can get her to finally say yes! Once again Ms. Dover has provided me with a delightful little literary escape and left me in awe of her literary talents, I love her stories so much!! The moment I read the synopsis for this one I was intrigued, and ready to dive in and meet these two. And the moment I got started there was no stopping me, I was hooked by Chapter one, and didn't intend to walk away until I had devoured every last word... and boy was it deliciously satisfying!! It is one of those reads that will take you on a bit of emotional roller coaster, giving you moments of happiness, fear, heartbreak, excitement and even a few blush worthy moments too! Highly recommend you give this one a try, Ms. Dover's heartfelt tale is sure to keep you captivated from start to finish!! I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this title
dsubsits 6 months ago
L. P. Dover scores with HARD STICK the first book in the Breakaway series. Charlotte Strikers’ enforcer, Kellan Carter, falls for bartender, Kristen Robinson. Kristen is reluctant to get involved with Kellan due to her daunting past. This contemporary sports romance is suitable for adult audiences. It takes place in Boston and North Carolina. HARD STICK was amazing. The plot had a little of everything: mystery, drama, conspiracy, romance, hockey, tragedy, humor, and hope. The characters are well-developed and believable. Kristen was a compelling heroine who had a misfortunate past. She is strong and brave. My heart went out to her. She has some loyal and amazing friends. I love Kellan. He is the captain of the Charlotte Striker NHL team. He is hardworking and determined. He is protective and reliable. He is creative when setting up his dates with Kristen. The two have wonderful chemistry and make an outstanding couple. Mitchell Blackwell makes a fascinating advisory. He is power hungry and controlling. He is a dangerous man who cannot be trusted. I enjoyed the story line. It had a lot of substance and felt meaningful. There were excellent twists. HARD STICK is skillfully written. It had a great pace that is tough to put down. I enjoyed the epilogue. It felt well concluded. I am looking forward to Dallas Easton’s story in the next book in the series, BLOCKED. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book.
KindleKat64 6 months ago
Another winner by one of my favorite authors LP Dover. I just don't know what to expect sometimes with her stories and that is one of the things I love most about her. It had just the right amount of everything! I am loving this new series and this new team! This was such a great story that keeps you all-in because you just have to see what is going to happen next. Kellan and Kristen have some incredible chemistry! I love them together. This has a huge romantic suspense quality to it and I for one was unable to put it down. I cannot wait for the next book in this new series!