Ink and Ice

Erin McRae and Racheline Maltese. Avian30, $3.99 e-book (278p) ISBN 978-1-393-80256-3

An Olympic hopeful and the reporter assigned to cover him navigate a rocky relationship in the pleasing second Twin Cities Ice romance from McRae and Maltese (following After the Gold). Twenty-three-year-old figure skater Aaron Sheftall rushes to Minnesota for preseason training after a top-ranked U.S. skater suffers a career-ending injury, opening up the field. Zack Kelly, an award-winning war-zone reporter coping with a recent divorce, receives a call from his editor asking him to write a story about Aaron and the other front-runner for the spot on the U.S. national team. Though he’s unfamiliar with the sport, Zack agrees—and he’s immediately attracted to Aaron. The men grow closer, with Aaron teaching Zack to skate and Zack introducing Aaron to the pleasures of bondage. But Zack’s worried that he’ll be a distraction during Aaron’s competitions and deflates Aaron’s elation following a risky performance by ending their relationship. Now Aaron faces the intense qualifying competitions alone while Zack struggles to build a new life in the Twin Cities. But can they really stay apart? The friction between Aaron’s bubbly, open style and Zack’s outwardly brusque but sensitive personality buoys the plot along through these ups and downs. The result is a solid if not particularly memorable romance. (Self-published)
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