Author Name & Publisher: D.K. Dunn (Dreamspinner Press)
Publication Date & Length: May 18, 2015 – 224pgs
Life is going pretty well for Derek LaVigne. He’s playing professional hockey in Los Angeles where hockey is barely on the radar, and this allows him to live in relative anonymity. Derek’s world is tilted on its axis when he’s traded to the Detroit Wheels. Not only is this one of the top teams in the National Hockey League, he’ll also be playing in a city that lives and breathes hockey. It sounds like a dream come true, but soon enough it becomes clear it isn’t.
The reason for Derek’s change of heart is Trevor Ladouceur. Five years ago Derek and Trevor were linemates on Team Canada at the World Junior Championship. They were inseparable both on and off the ice and became known as the Wonder Twins. After winning the gold medal, they slept together. Trevor was gone the next morning, and they haven’t spoken since. Now they’re together again, and the expectation is for the Wonder Twins to help Detroit win the Stanley Cup. Much to Derek’s dismay, he realizes he’s falling in love with Trevor all over again.
For a Canadian girl, an m/m hockey romance is the the perfect story, and this one doesn’t disappoint. The characters are believable, attractive and more than just a little damaged. And the hockey action is great.
The story is Derek’s. As a closeted NHL benchwarmer in LA, he has the anonymity to visit the local gay bars and enjoy frequent hook-ups. But a trade to Detroit, his home team, means a life in the spotlight and playing with Trevor, the only man he has ever really cared about.
Trevor has a glamorous girlfriend and he genuinely doesn’t think he’s gay. Or he doesn’t want to be gay. And he won’t have his career ruined by a single night’s drunken mistake with Derek.
Yes, both men are closeted. Yes, Trevor is a fully grown adult in denial about his sexuality. Yes, Trevor treats Derek badly. The players’ language is homophobic and misogynistic.
They play professional ice hockey. The sport with redneck crowds and beer sponsorships. I believe this story more than I would believe a sappy coming-out-on-national-TV story. You can guarantee there are players living Trevor and Derek’s lives right now.
As much as I loved this, I really didn’t feel much romance. So, while this is a great story about gay players in the NHL, it didn’t resonate as a great love story. Enjoy it for the hockey, the angst, and some pretty physical sex scenes.
D K Dunn has enjoyed writing since childhood. She penned her first story, which was a Snoopy/”Star Wars” mash up at the tender age of 8. Several years later her imagination is still running wild. Her best ideas come to her while she’s either stuck in traffic or in the shower.
She’s a proud fangirl, who loves “Supernatural,” “Star Wars,” and the Detroit Red Wings. Reality TV is one of her guilty pleasures. A day can easily be wasted falling under its siren-like spell. When she’s not writing or watching too much TV, she enjoys traveling, reading, vidding, cheese and ice cream. She’s a firm believer that you can’t go a day without cheese or a good laugh.