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Trying to Score: Toni Aleo

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In a captivating novel of second chances and healing hearts, the newest member of the Nashville Assassins pulls a power play to make things right with the one that got away.
 
Fallon Parker’s dream has always been to turn her family’s wine company into a runaway success and eventually start a cellar of her own. Since graduating from college, she has worked relentlessly to make that dream a reality, especially after taking a chance on love—and losing. By the time Fallon becomes an official sponsor of the Nashville Assassins, she feels like all her hard work is finally paying off. And then the man who broke her heart skates back into her life.

On the ice, Lucas Brooks is the NHL’s leading scorer—at least when he’s not in the box. Off the ice, he’s a mess, with all his anger and misery bottled up inside. He threw away the most important person in his life and has regretted it ever since. But when Lucas returns to Nashville in a trade, he’s determined to convince Fallon that he’s a changed man. The attraction is still there. The tension is electrifying. But the odds are stacked against them—especially after Lucas finds out that Fallon has been keeping a devastating secret.



So, this is my second book by Toni and I must say I am a fan, totally hooked, even though again, the heroine irked the ever-living day lights out of me. Toni can write her butt off and she quickly becomes addicting even if you want to slap the chicks around in her books. Ugh, they are so fricken annoying, sorry Toni, but seeing as you wrote them you probably already realize that. My stars again are out of alignment when it comes to this author. It is maddening that I cannot just settle right off the bat with how I will rate. I am used to clean cut stars. Not with Toni's series, this contests to her writing skills. So for this round, I  came up with my 4 star rating, and it definitely was not due to Fallon. If I left it up to her character it wouldn't of made it past a 2.

Lucas and Aiden absolutely made this story perfect, they were both addicting in their own ways. I loved this daddy and son trio.

I felt so much frustration for Lucas I just wanted to give him a hug(ok and maybe a few other things), this man just COULD NOT catch a break he just couldn't. He made a mistake 7 years ago and paid the ultimate price for it.  No matter how he tried to earn forgiveness, no matter how much he tried to show Fallon he was a changed man, for her it just didn't matter and she made him pay through 90% of the book. I shed some tears for him, and there were some emotional moments where I just wanted him to walk away from his relationship with her. I can honestly say I would never ever put up with the crap he did. He has the patience of a saint. Seriously, this man was so flawed, yet perfect. I wish I could quote some of his lines for you because they were sweet, they were hilarious, and some of them were so dirty they made my panties melt (yes, I know too much info). Toni Aleo is a genius at giving us HOT SWEET AND DIRTY ALPHA MALES, her hockey stars have made it to my top book boyfriend list, well at least Lucas has!

Aiden held his own, he cracked me up and made my heart smile with his innocence. Next to his father, he had some of the greatest lines. AJ never failed to have me giggling or sniffling in sadness. Just wait till you meet him, he will cuddle his way into your heart and just hang out there, because he is awesome like that.

Fallon, dear Fallon, let me count the ways in which I wanted to rip your face off. I truly and utterly disliked you. I am sorry to say that while Elli rode my nerves, you take the cake. At least with Elli I saw glimpses of good, and I understood partially where she was coming from with her insecurities and their good moments outweighed the bad. Yours not so much. Through 90% of this book, you whined, made excuses, and used your child as a shield. I seriously got so tired of the "he cheated"...let me just inform you Fallon that you were wrong on so many levels and oh so selfish. It was 7 years ago, it is time to GET OVER IT. In the beginning, I felt sympathy for Fallon, but seriously, once I met Lucas and the more I got to know him and his story I just could not sympathize with her any longer. The whining became so tedious enough is enough.  Especially since I did not agree with her actions or the reason she kept Aiden from Lucas. Either forgive the man and move on or learn to let it go so that you may get along for your son. I won't say Lucas and Fallon didn't have intense emotional and physical chemistry between them because there was, even with all the whining it flows strongly off the pages. They were explosive in and out of the bedroom. I really wanted to root for this couple, but by the time the HEA came I was so over the cheating and trust thing. It's not that I didn't understand her pain or feelings of betrayal, because I did. It's just that the drama was drawn out for so long and over used that I was so over it, I didn't care any longer. I really wish I could say I liked Fallon, but sitting back and thinking back over it I can't. I just can't. Another heroine bites the dust.

Personally for me the author needed the couple to resolve their issues much faster than they actually did. Towards the end, I thought they had finally settled it and were on the path to finding their HEA when I was steered back in the other direction to go through it all over again.

Overall Trying to Score worked much better for me. All the characters except for Fallon kept me coming back for more and I even enjoyed the glimpses of Ellie I got. Married life has really done wonders for her. Now Audrey, Fallon's sister, that chick has me on the fence. She started out amazing, and then well towards the end she seemed so out of character. I cannot wait to read her story so I can dig deeper into what is going on with her and make my decision from there.

Thank you NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review Trying To Score in exchange for my honest opinion.

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