Line Mates & Study Dates (CU Hockey #4) ~ Eden Finley & Saxon James
Line Mates and Study Dates is book 4 in the CU Hockey series penned by the talented writing duo Eden Finley and Saxon James. This is Asher and Kole’s book.
Asher first appeared in book 3 Goal Lines and First Times. To be honest, he wasn’t the nicest of people, but he was one of those characters where you knew all the snark, arrogance, and disdain was a cover, and we got enough glimpses to know that what we were presented with was definitely not the true Asher. As we learnt in book 3, bad things led to Asher’s less than sparkling personality, and it takes a loveable nerd to break down Asher’s walls and show the world that he’s a decent human being underneath it all.
Kole was a great character. You could assign all sorts of archetypes to him, but at the end of the day, he was just an honestly lovely guy, a bit nerdy, but also able to match Asher snark for snark and call him on his attitude. Kole was exactly what Asher needed, gentle enough that Asher could let his guard down, but with a spine of iron so that he could stand up for himself and not let Asher walk all over him.
I only have one eensy-weensy criticism of this book, and that is that I missed the other guys! Foster and Zach are missing entirely, except for a 1-second mention right at the end. Jacobs is referenced by Beck, but only appears in a single scene, and Beck is there, but he is only mentioned a few times and only has one or two actual speaking parts. Cohen and Seth appear at the end, but again, only for a couple of paragraphs. I really missed my boys, and I was having withdrawal symptoms!
Eden Finley and Saxon James once again hit that perfect blend of sassy humour and soul-wrenching emotion. Line Mates and Study Dates was probably the most serious of the books so far, simply because Asher's history is serious in and of itself. There were still many, many humorous moments, but there were also quite a few emotional scenes; and of course, as is to be expected with these two authors, lots of heat!
I really enjoyed Line Mates and Study Dates, both of these authors have a writing style and sense of humour that I find really engaging. They write as a cohesive unit where it is challenging to tell who is writing a particular scene. Both of them obviously have a wicked sense of humour, and this is put to full effect to put a smile on your face. Fair warning, if you are reading this on public transport, you may just look like a grinning loon at some stage (this may or may not have happened to me a few times!).
I seriously would not recommend reading Line Mates and Study Dates as a standalone; at this point in the series, there is way too much backstory to appreciate it without reading the previous book. Each book builds upon the other, so if you haven't started this series yet, then do yourself a favour and grab Power Plays and Straight A's as soon as you can!
For those that are familiar with this series, you are in for a treat. I’d also recommend a couple of tissues, one for when a tear leaks, the other when you snort your drink out of your nose because either Kole or Asher did something crazy!