The Good Luck Charm

good luck charmLilah is having a bad day. She gets soaked by the rain. She accidentally leaves her coffee on the hood of her car. She gets served divorce papers. As she works her shift, she wondered how much worse the day can get.

The answer?

Much worse. Near the end of her shift, she finds out that her surrogate father, Martin, has been admitted to the hospital with a stroke.

Another bad thing. Martin’s son, Ethan, is sitting in martin’s room when she gets there. Ethan was her high school sweetheart who suddenly broke up with her and left her eight years ago after he was drafted into the NHL.

Ethan is apologetic. He’s been traded to Minnesota, and will be living locally this year. He wants a second chance, but can Lilah forgive him? Can she open her heart to him again?

I noticed . . .

I noticed that this is a second chance romance, which is my least favorite romance trope. I didn’t actually pick this one out though. I received it through my Book of the Draw subscription, a subscription that often seems to surprises me with the books the curator sends me.  I get the two book box, and received Every Note Played in the same box as this book. This subscription is always a great way for me to get books that I missed when they were new releases.

I noticed that Ethan really wants to pick up as if there was no gap in their relationship. He struggles to respect Lilah’s boundaries in his desire for constant closeness with Lilah.

I noticed that this book is far sexier than I had anticipated from the cover. If you’re not a fan of open door romance, this is one you’re going to want to pass on.

I noticed that Lilah has a lot of drama going on in her life. She has family issues, a missing father who comes back into her life, a distant mother, an ongoing divorce, and a struggle to get into graduate school. That’s in addition to the relationship issues with Ethan, both in the past and present. This book does some heavy lifting for a romance, and in a lot of ways tries to do too much.

I noticed that I really loved some of the secondary characters. I liked some of Ethan’s teammates. I really liked Lilah’s sister, Carmen, and her therapy patient, Emery. Ethan also has a brother that seems ripe for romance.

I wondered . . .

I wondered whether Lilah will be able to establish a relationship with her biological father.

I wondered about Carmen and Noah. Could there be another book with these characters?

I also wanted to hear more about the young, college student, Emery. She was so much fun.

I wondered if Lilah will be able to make space for herself in her own life and whether or not she will set up appropriate boundaries in her relationships. I really wanted to see Lilah get to a therapist because I don’t think she was truly ready for a new relationship, even if it was a second chance relationship.

I noticed that the author has several more hockey romances, and I wondered whether any of them were related to this book.

It reminded me of . . .

I was reminded of All I Ask, which was another second chance romance. The main character in this book feels like she has to choose between romance and career too.

I was also reminded of Intercepted. This is another sports romance, only involves my favorite sport to watch–football.

Three excellent quotes . . .

One of the things that has most amazed me as a mom to teenagers is how they remember their childhoods so much differently from how I remember them. So, I found this quote really meaningful:

It’s amazing how memories shift and change with time, or how one person’s recollection of events varies so greatly from another.

When I saw this quote, I thought of how we forget the faults of those who have passed away. When the relationship does not exist anymore, this quote becomes real:

Remembering all the best things is easy when you can pretend the rest never happened.

I also like this quote about decision making. I’ve really been thinking a lot about regret and it’s uselessness over the past few months. This quote illuminates that:

We make decisions based on what we think is right at the time, and those consequences can follow us, but they don’t cover the path we’re on forever. It’s what we take from that experience and how we allow it to impact the choices we make as we move forward that means the most.

Ultimately, I found this romance a little unsatisfying. I just think that Lilah had so many personal issues that she wasn’t ready for a romance. This made some of her decisions and the way that Ethan treated her in the book just a little untenable for me.

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