Review: Across the Line, by Kate Willoughby



Part of a series? Yes, but it can be read as a standalone.

Cliffhanger? No.

Category: Adult.

Genre: Contemporary Romance.

Publisher: Carina Press

Pages: 287.


Book two of In the Zone

Calder Griffin needs to get back in shape. Sidelined last season by a knee injury, he’s determined to return to the San Diego Barracudas and play the best hockey of his career. This might even be the year he gets out of his talented older brother’s shadow.

For months, Becca Chen has poured her energy into Cups, the restaurant she owns, desperate to prove to her parents that she can succeed in the career of her choice, not theirs. But after she spends a five-hour plane ride flirting with charming, magic-on-the-ice Calder, she tells herself she needs a fling.

Becca and Calder can’t keep their hands off each other, but they know the relationship can’t last. They live on opposite coasts, and they’re both too devoted to their careers. All they have to do is prevent their feelings from crossing the line from lust to love…

See how Calder’s teammate Tim found love in On the Surface.

99,000 words



I received this book via Netgalley for an honest review.
While this book is the second installment of a Contemporary Romance series featuring NHL players, each book can be read as a standalone.
I loved the first book, completely fell for the author’s writing and also with her characters and I was a little bit apprehensive about this one. It’s often that I find myself disappointed with another book in a series, even with books you can read independently, but here the disappointment never came.
While it took me a couple chapters to truly warm up to the characters and the narration, it soon enough drew me in.
It took me a little bit of time to fully enjoy Across the Line because I think the pace at first is a little bit off, maybe too telling. Though, the author quickly finds her footing with this book and I completely forgot everything else.
The characters are still great, have a few little flaws, meet some obstacles and that’s what I enjoy. Granted, this story isn’t going to have you broken hearted or even running high on emotions, but it’s not that kind of read.
Also, I love how the author balances the plot and the tidbits of hokey to truly create a little world fun to read. I’m biased though because I can’t resist stories featuring hockey players. Or pro athletes in general. 🙂
The plot in this book is simple enough, but works perfectly. I had a hard time putting the book down and even though some things were predictable, I still had a good time. Maybe not as much as I had with the first book, but still.
Calder is a great lead male character. He’s sweet, hot and almost too perfect at times, but he’s too dreamy to really criticize. I enjoyed his struggles regarding his brother and it felt really honest.
Becca… I’m surprised that I like her so much. Usually, female lead characters don’t always come across as likable, either because they’re too bitchy, or too weak compared to the male character, but not Becca. I could understand her and I even sympathized with her. Though, I would have loved it if things would have been more developed regarding her family issues.
The ending of the book is quite abrupt and it leaves me with an unfinished taste. Though, the plot and story is fully finished, it’s just very sudden and the resolution really fast. Too fast? Probably. At least, according to me.
I look forward to the next book in the series. Apparently, we’ll have Alex’s story and I can’t wait!
What do you think of Calder? Are you like me, eagerly waiting for Alex’s turn?

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