Offside by Juliana Stone (The Barker Triplets #1)

Available: Now Amazon

Type: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Self Pub

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Nikki

When hockey phenom Billie-Jo Barker returns home and decides to play in the local Friday night hockey league, all hell breaks loose. Not because Billie’s talent is in question, but because Billie is a woman. And though these are modern times, some of the local guys still have a problem letting a girl into their ‘men’s club.’

Soon, Billie is at the center of a small town battle of the sexes, with everyone choosing sides. Her sisters. The townsfolk. Her friends. And yet, the only person whose opinion she cares about doesn’t seem to care much at all. Logan Forest, the man who broke her heart when she was eighteen and the man she now shares the bench with every Friday night.

She’s got a lot to prove and though Billie Jo Barker scores on the ice, will this girl ever score with the man of her dreams?

.

Billie-Jo Barker, one third of the Barker triplets, is back in town and she’s not that happy about it. With her professional hockey career cut short by injury she has slunk back into town with nothing to her name but a small nest egg and her equipment. Her relationship with one of her other sisters, Bobbi, is strained and she has no idea where her life is headed now.

When she sees a local hockey tournament sign up sheet she instantly decides to join regardless of her health and past injuries. The men in town aren’t fond of the idea though and they go out of their way to tell her. Now, I don’t know much about hockey myself but these men were downright cruel. Billie handles the jabs quite well but I have to wonder how much of these attitudes are true and why if they are she’d want to subject herself to it. The men even resort to getting physical in a non physical tournament.

Logan didn’t realize that the sporty Barker sister had grown up quite so nicely. He’s instantly attracted to her but his past with who he thinks is her popular sister Betty leaves him in a gray area and he isn’t sure how to proceed. As Billie and Logan get closer each will have to come clean about past transgressions. I would have liked a bit more evolution to their relationship. The sex is great and the  tension is well done but everything seemed to turn for them quickly. They were declaring their love and that was that. More courtship would have been better suited for this one. In fact Logan doesn’t get much of a say at all. Most everything is from Billie’s perspective and I wish I would have gotten more from him. More face time and more understanding. He’s there but because we don’t get much from his perspective he’s kept on the back burner and becomes almost a secondary character.

Bobbie and Billie…These two sisters have a tumultuous relationship stemming from Bobbi’s jealousy and bitter feelings of being left behind to be the adult while Billie had her hockey career and Betty had her modeling. Feeling solely
responsible for the care of their father who is suffering from dementia. Billie and Bobbi butt heads constantly and I enjoyed the friction and realistic feelings from both of them. While they may argue incessantly, they still have each others back and Bobbi is always quick to jump to her sisters defense when needed. Bobbi is the buttoned up sister though I think she may get a bit wild when she finally lets go and I have an inkling it’ll be with her past.

Offside is a cute contemporary romance that should satisfy lovers of the genre. Juliana Stone excels at making the experience realistic, fun and easily read. She’s sure to entertain you and I will be looking forward to the next book in this series!

I give Offside by Juliana Stone 4 stars!

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