"I am so, SO sorry for what I did to you, Max."
"Nah, don't worry about it, Misha. I forgive you, no biggie. So... wanna fuck?"
Ok, so I lied and this isn't an actual quote from the book, but it pretty much sums up what happens at around the 15% mark. THE 15% MARK, PEOPLE.
Leave it to Avon Gale to take the most promising enemies-to-lovers blurb and turn it into another boring mess. How you can completely remove this "conflict" (I have to force myself to use that term with THIS book) so early in the story and think this is a good idea is beyond me. There was nothing even remotely interesting left about Max and Misha's relationship after that.
In fact, this whole series is so formulaic at this point that I feel like I've just read the same story all over again for the third time: a dumb-ass simpleton (Max and Lane from the first book - and to a certain degree also Ethan from book #2 - are practically the same person) falls for the slightly more matured one and vice versa, they start fucking in the first quarter of the story and what follows is just a big bubble of NOTHING. Plus some hockey.
There never is an actual conflict, no real storyline and no overall story arc at all in these books (I got my hopes up for a second that there would be an interesting side story involving Drake, but that also got resolved in the blink of an eye and half a page).
Even the hockey scenes were boring this time and poorly developed. At the beginning, the Spartanburg Spitfires were "the worst team in the entire league", until they weren't anymore. Why, how or what had happened to make them evolve from being the league's underdog to a force to be reckoned with, I have no idea.
And man, were the sex scenes ever as awkward as always in this series. I mean, who fist bumps when he gets penetrated? FIST. BUMPS. For real, guys. Who the hell does that, I'm asking you? *pours himself another glass of wine*
My rating might seem a little harsh, but I still can't get over the fact that an m/m author who writes a story with a Russian (!) MC repeatedly claims that homosexuality is illegal in Russia. No, Avon, honey, it's NOT! Though the LGBT community is heavily discriminated against in Russia, homosexuality is NOT officially illegal there (yet). Do your fucking homework, authors!
Oh, and one last thing: dear amateur audiobook narrator person, if the MCs have some dialogue during the sex scenes, you might want to adjust your voice a little. Even just slightly so. Because you can't have a character speak in the same voice while, let's say when he's cooking dinner, as when he has two fingers up his ass. SEX VOICES! THEY MATTER!
If these books have taught me one thing, then it's that I should restrain myself from buying a whole series before I've read the first installment. But, alas, I did and unfortunately it's too late to return them for refund. So here we are. On to the next (and thankfully) last book. I'm already excited.