Auden Berezin is used to losing people: her father, her mother, her first love. Now, just when she believes those childhood wounds are finally healing, she loses something else: the soccer scholarship that was her ticket to college. Scrambling to earn tuition money, she is relieved to find a gig translating for a Russian minor-league hockey player- until she realizes that he's the same dangerously sexy jerk who propositioned her at the bar the night before.
Equal parts muscle and scar tissue, Aleksandr Varenkov knows about trauma. Maybe that's what draws him to Auden. He also lost his family too young, and he channeled the pain into his passions: first hockey, then vodka and women. But all that seems to just melt away the instant he kisses Auden and feels a jolt of desire as sudden and surprising as a hard check on the ice.
After everything she's been through, Auden can't bring herself to trust any man, let alone a hot-headed puck jockey with a bad reputation. Aleksandr just hopes she'll give him a chance- long enough to prove he's finally met the one that makes him want to change.
Fans of hockey romance, or just good romance in general will fall in love with Delayed Penalty the debut novel by Sophia Henry. I quickly found myself swept into the world of Pilots hockey and Aleksandr and Auden. The relationship between these two starts as a mutual attraction, but quickly grows into much, much more. Our hero and heroine have many things in their past that haunt them, and those things have kept them each from moving forward in one way or the other. As the pair come together they begin to heal each other and the story quickly builds into a steamy romance.
The author does a great job of developing her characters and also developing the supporting characters. I loved the Russian banter and cultural aspects that are introduced. It gave the story a special flare that was unique and felt fresh. Our hero and heroine have so much in common, they were a perfect pairing. Auden deals so well with Aleksandr's antics! I smiled a lot, laughed some and even shed a few tears.
I love discovering new authors and Sophia Henry has earned her spot on my list of authors to watch. If Delayed Penalty is any indication the Pilot's Hockey series will be AMAZING. I gave Delayed Penalty 5 STARS and have added it to my favorites and sports romance shelves on Goodreads.
Note: I was given an ARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I honestly loved this book!