• The Word Nerd Reviews

Power Plays & Straight A's ~ Eden Finley & Saxon James; Narrated ~ Alexander Cendese & Iggy Toma

Updated: Oct 26



Power Plays and Straight A’s is the first book in the CU Hockey series, and it is also the first book co-written by Eden Finley & Saxon James. Talk about hitting it out of the ballpark on the first attempt; this book has everything: hockey, captivating characters, humour, romance, and more than just a little heat!


As the first book in the series, it sets the scene for the stories that follow and introduces a few of the characters that will feature in this and future books, namely: Foster (Grant), Zach, Jacobs (Topher), Beck, Seth, and Cohen. Power Plays and Straight A’s is Foster and Zach’s time in the limelight, and they certainly shine. Foster and Zach are my favourite couple (so far anyway), it’s the ultimate jock and ultimate nerd combination, they are so very different, yet they work.

This book is jam-packed with: all the feels; humour for miles; a lot of facepalming, second-hand embarrassment from/for Zach; all the romance you could possibly want; and heat, so much heat but also tenderness. The whole cast of characters are well developed and likeable, and you just can’t help but fall a little for Grant or Zach, or both of them. As this was the first book co-authored by Eden Finley and Saxon James, I expected to see a few teething problems. To the credit of these two amazing authors, I couldn’t find a single one! Their writing styles and sense of humour mesh so perfectly, and even though I was aware of who was writing each character’s POV, the transition was completely seamless. The characterisation and dialogue were consistent for all the cast, no matter who was writing a particular scene. Eden and Saxon are so well-matched, and both of them have epic comedic timing!




This was the first book where I experienced the narrations of Alexander Cendese and Iggy Toma, and I was thoroughly impressed! They did a fantastic job of giving Grant and Zach a unique voice and personality. In fact, the entire cast had distinctive voices and their personalities shone through. Overall, Alexander and Iggy did an amazing job, and I wouldn’t hesitate to pick up anything else they narrate.


I have now read Power Plays and Straight A's three times and listened to the audio twice. Every time I enjoy it just as much as I did the first time. This is a book that you can regularly revisit: it is always fresh, the humour on point, and the romance always sigh-worthy.


With the fourth book in the CU Hockey series due next month (23 June 2021), now is the perfect time to start this series. If you have Kindle Unlimited, all books are available for free from that service, and I highly recommend grabbing the audio upgrade; it adds another special element to what is already an absorbing and addictive story!

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