Overall Grade: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
Kendall Ryan’s The Rookie starts out strong. Her hero, Logan, is struggling with his season. After losing his temper and taking out a hockey player on the opposing team, he’s suspended and forced to work with a counselor. That counselor is our heroine, Summer. Since Logan returns home to Colorado to wait out his suspension, Summer travels to his family’s home to help him, as she has a burgeoning counseling business. Logan is not excited to see her, but his family conspires to keep Summer there. Even though Logan wants to get rid of Summer, he finds himself attracted to her. As Summer spends two weeks in his home, they grow closer and realize they want more, but their roles won’t allow it. Will they find their happy ending?
I really do like the intention behind Kendall Ryan’s Looking to Score hockey series. And even at the beginning of this story, I loved the “hate to love” motif that began it. However, there are some issues with the story. For one, and I recognize this is fiction and I have to suspend my disbelief, I struggled with Summer’s willingness to undermine her position as Logan’s counselor. I don’t think that Ryan handles the true gravity of this in her story. Summer is unprofessional and unethical. Even more, the grief that Logan is manifesting in anger is handled quickly (in one session), and that feels irresponsible even for a romance. During a time when there are many romance authors handling major issues in productive ways, I worry that The Rookie is too fluffy and inconsequential in its treatment of Logan’s problems.
Yes, there is a cute romance here. Yes, it’s intermixed with those steamy scenes indicative of a Kendall Ryan story, but I struggled with the storytelling and character development with this one. It’s uneven and feels a bit lazy.
If you don’t care about the believability of a story, then you’ll probably like The Rookie. It’s fairly light fare, and it has a happy ending. If that’s your thing, then grab this one for your weekend reading.
In love and romance,