Monthly Mini Review
The Risk by Elle Kennedy, narrated by Teddy Hamilton & Virginia Rose – B+ I bought this on a Whispersync special a while ago. Teddy Hamilton is one of my favourite male narrators and I’ve had some good experience with Virginia Rose before as well and $2.19 was a bargain I could not resist. Book 2 in Elle Kennedy’s Briar U series, which is in itself a spin-off of the Off Campus series set around the same college hockey team, The Risk tells the story of Brenna Jensen, the coach’s daughter and her secret relationship with star Harvard forward Jake Connelly. Jake and Brenna have smoking hot chemistry but it takes a while before they do more than smolder at each other – Briar and Harvard are deadly rivals on the ice and Brenna taking up with him is tantamount to treason. However, their chemistry cannot be denied, particularly when Jake may be able to help Brenna in her quest for an internship at Hockeynet, a cable TV channel devoted to all things hockey. Brenna is studying journalism (she wants to focus on sports) and is up against all sorts of misogyny in getting a chance. Jake agrees to help her out – one fake date in exchange for a real one and off we go.
The romance is great, very satisfying and very hot. I liked both Jake and Brenna. I especially loved how sex-positive they were with each other.
Brenna had been a bit of wild child and there is a troubled history between her and her dad which is slowly revealed over the course of the story. They do love each other though and their eventual “reconciliation” wasn’t one of those forced forgiveness things.
I had some mixed feelings about a secondary character, Rupi Miller, who was one of the few characters of colour in the book. She and Mike Hollis have a very interesting and hilarious relationship. She is a very over the top character who I would have laughed uncomplicatedly had she been white but as there was little non-white representation I had some reservations about the depiction. I’m not sure if I’m overthinking here or not. Hollis is so funny and weird – he made me laugh often. I was less conflicted about the hijinks of Harvard player Brooks Weston – the scenes where he was showing everyone his “bubble butt” cracked me up. Teddy Hamilton really nailed the narration there.
Both narrators were great, with excellent character voices, tension, emotion and pacing. Good decision to spent $2.19 past me!
Coming Soon on Audio
Reviews of these books will be up soon at AudioGals.