No matter how hard she tries, Elleanor Fisher never thinks she’s good enough, from her job to her weight to her love life. After enduring years of abuse at the hands of an ex-boyfriend, Elli has been drifting through life in a daze. Until, that is, she meets Shea Adler on a promotional shoot for the NHL’s Nashville Assassins. Before Elli knows what’s happening, the gorgeous Shea breaks the ice and shatters her world.
A brilliant athlete inside the rink, Shea Adler is tired of the life he’s living outside of it: the women, the money, the drinking. But everything changes when he meets Elli. After laying eyes on this feisty, witty, beautiful woman, he feels like he’s just taken the hardest hit of his life. No matter how skeptical she is, Shea knows they are meant to be together–if only he can convince Elli to put her insecurities aside before she misses out on a shot at love.
– Exert from Taking Shots, Assassins #1
Reading this book, well it was one of my first delves into the idea of combining my love of a good old fashioned romance novel and my growing love of ice hockey. To say I was a little dubious at first would be an understatement. I’d gone onto the Kindle Store looking for a book on the rules of the game and had only written ‘NHL…’ into the search box when ‘NHL romance’ was suggested to me. Well damn you Kindle and your suggested search, nevermind the rules of the game ey? I’m now completely in love with a fictional ice hockey team from Nashville, Tennessee.
The book opens with our introduction to Elli and reading only the first few lines I do think a lot of women will see so much of themselves in this character. I already wanted to know more about this woman, without a second thought to the hockey part of the book.
Ellie is a girl who has low self-esteem, coming from a family that for a lot of the time can be hard to deal with and with a sister who can be nothing short of hellish. Elli just wants to be happy and with her photography business booming and the opportunity to photograph the men of the Nashville Assassins it all looks rather promising. Though, like any woman that issue of self-esteem comes steamrollering along to make life just that little bit trickier. She has the body confidence issues that I know I have personally, I think it’s why in a way I see so much of myself in Elli. I can find myself relating to her on a very personal level as I too struggle with the issues of low self-esteem, poor body image and a lack of confidence in myself. She is however a wonderful character and meeting the Assassin’s captain (and her personal fancy man) Shea Adler gives her a whole new outlook on life.
I love this book, personally I think it’s the best way to start off a series. It can be read as a standalone but once you know there are more men to get to know? More women to fall in love with them? You’ll not be able to put them down. I can read one of these books in a day or less. Toni’s way of writing isn’t overly complicated in a way that takes away from the story itself. Through the book there are twists and turns, but then we know that true love never runs smooth now don’t we? I can promise you, it’s so worth buying and the link below (as opposed to the one above!) will take you to Amazon where you can purchase all FIVE of the first books as a discounted bundle.
You’ll lose yourself in this fictional world that Toni Aleo creates so perfectly. She uses her books to really look into the issues of the real world in a way that is so wonderfully relatable. In Elli, almost every woman can step into her shoes. In Shea Adler, we can see the qualities of a man we could only dream of. It’s the most wonderful fantasy world to get lost in, yet at the same time as you read it could all be very real. By the end of the book I can almost guarantee you’ll be wishing that the Nashville Assassins actually existed.
If you want to check out Taking Shots, or any of the other of the first 5 of Toni’s Nashville Assassins’ novels, the link above will take you to Amazon where you can purchase them all for £11.48 and have them send straight to your Kindle device or Kindle app on your mobile phone. If you don’t already use Kindle I would hugely recommend it, with a huge range of books to chose from that will leave you spoiled for choice. I know I certainly have been and some books were even free!
If you’re interested in finding out more about Toni, I interviewed her earlier in the year about her books and met her in Edinburgh this year which was just wonderful.Her own bubbly personality comes across when you read her books and her little introductions give you a little insight into why she began writing in the first place. I for one couldn’t be more thrilled by this.