Review: Good Boy by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy

Reviewed by Joanna

Jessie is organizing her brother Jamie’s wedding to hockey super-star Wes. She’s stressed, more so as she’s trying to impress her family in the face of being a screw-up with frequently shifting careers. She certainly doesn’t need the unhelpful advice of Wes’s best man, Blake.

Blake’s also a hockey player, dark haired, green eyed and with a mean case of hyperactive puppy syndrome. Seriously – he’s all over the place though it’s actually pretty charming and he is universally loved.

He and Jessie slept together once and they rocked each other’s world, but she doesn’t have time for his idiocy. She’s got her life to sort out and lots has to change – including the event planning career she’s finally got good at.

Blake calls her J-Babe (and her brother Jamie J-Bomb), as well as using a lot of other strange words like cheezus, ridic and whiz fizz – Frat-boy nonsense from this huge (in all areas) man.

He’s not about to give up getting round two with Jessie though his chances are dimmed when he brings the balloon equivalent of sports foam fingers to the reception instead of the tasteful white balloons Jessie ordered. People love them but our girl is a harder nut to crack.

In fact the only time she lets Blake near her is when she’s vulnerable. Not to suggest he’s taking advantage as he’s pursuing her all the rest of the time too.

Things heat up when Jessie moves to Toronto for her latest venture – nursing school. This so happens to be where Blake plays hockey. And he lives in the same building as her brother and his husband.

If you haven’t read Him or Us, Jessie’s brother Jamie and his other half Wes are the stars. There is lots of crossover but this is standalone. There’s a smidge of character overload and nods-to at the beginning but it wasn’t distracting from the story. What it absolutely did was make me want to jump to read those other two books.

The story is low on angst and big on cute. Jess struggles as a student and having Blake nearby is too tempting. He’s as enthusiastic about her as he is about abusing the English language, but he’s been burned in love so is just looking for what makes him feel good, not a relationship.

“I try not to think Deep Thoughts if I can avoid it.”

There’s a great list of supporting characters – Blake’s family are all BIG and LOUD. Except for his dad who is small and quiet. His ex girlfriend is still on the family scene but really ought to be kicked to the kerb. I hated this woman.

There’s an interesting ‘video yourself reading this next bit’ feature to this book which seemed fun. I didn’t do it as who wants to see me squinting at a screen with my hair in a messy top knot? It almost made me want to go gussy up to film it, but I just wanted to read the segment. It was good, by the way.

This book is hot stuff. Blake’s eager in all areas.

If I have to find a negative, it would be that it’s so highly polished there’s no messy sections in it. No bits to wallow in or slow down with. Not much by change of pace as it all just keeps marching on. It’s a great story but over polishing can create a lack of depth. Messy discordant bits can hold beauty in the scrappiness. But hey, this is hardly a bad flaw to have.

If you want a happy page turner, this is it. But nothing will bite you if you want to be shook up.

Rating: A-

*ARC provided for review

Click to purchase: Amazon

Good Boy
by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy
Release Date: January 31, 2017

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