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Against the Rules: A story of taking a chance at love and rolling the dice to risk it all.

Arc provided by Kensington Publishing via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

As one of the people who fell in love with board games when I was young, I expected to have all sorts of sentimental feels with this book. Against the Rules certainly met my high challenge. Holly’s enthusiasm for games and the unbridled excitement when you play for the first time pulled on my heart strings. It reminded me of when I was younger and the most exciting part of my week would be playing board games with friends. Yes, I was one of those kids. You know the type – the ones who barely ever leave the house.  I related with Holly a lot and found myself unexpectedly absorbed in this story.

CHARACTERS

HOLLY – As I’ve mentioned, Holly was my favourite character in this story. She displayed a goodness and youthful enthusiasm that was contagious. I found myself contacting my friends in the hope of forming a game club (no luck! It seems that my excitement for starting a weekly game night wasn’t for everyone). What also made Holly endearing to me was her crush on Nathan – the ruggedly handsome older gamer in her club. Oh, and also her best friends dad. Awkward. I love a good dose of conflict and awkwardness in a story. Plus, I’m a sucker for the age difference trope. Love is love and age shouldn’t matter in my opinion, so to see this explored in this story was a definite point in the pro column for me!

NATHAN – I loved Nathan. He was charming, considerate and strong-willed. As a father and hardcore gamer, he had nailed down the responsibility aspect of his life while still being hopeful for finding love. How can you resist a man willing to risk it all for true love? I’m a sap, so Nathan’s strength in standing up to his disapproving daughter gained my affection and respect. He stood up for his feelings for Holly and this was a refreshing surprise. In many novels (even though I still love them) the relationship crumbles under familial disapproval so I adored the fact that he was willing to risk it all. I couldn’t help but find myself supportive of the way they fought for love.

THE GAMERS – Laura Heffernan has done something that all authors hope to do. She’s created a story that has not only coveted my attention but has also invested my interest in the supporting characters. I can’t wait to read more about them and see what direction the series takes. While I found myself often annoyed by Glen, I became intrigued in the prospect of a relationship between Shannon and Tyler. I loved the unrequited attraction trope that was budding between those two. I’m eager to see where their story takes them in the third instalment Make Your Move. Hopefully I love it as much as I adored this one!

Book Blurb:

RISK EVERYTHING . . . Holly has taken herself out of the dating game since breaking up with her cheating, thieving ex. She barely notices Marc, who comes into the game store every week, hoping to get her attention. Her friends insist it’s time to take on a new role, to leave Quiet Holly behind and embrace her inner flirt. And on paper, Marc’s great: cute, funny, and a hardcore gamer just like Holly is. Then there’s Nathan. He’s everything twenty-eight-year-old Holly wants…except he’s also her friend’s father. Absolutely off-limits. But as she and Nathan play-test a new legacy game together, they’re growing closer. The game is complex and intriguing, and there’s no way to know how choices will pan out. What seems like a good idea could lead to disaster…or sweet victory. But in gaming, as in love, sometimes you have to roll the dice and take your chance . . .

This book had the perfect amount of conflict and steamy romance. The prospect of dating your friend’s Dad could be seen as too taboo for some readers, but this author managed to write a heartfelt story of two people separated by time but no less in love for it. It was respectful to the nature of this relationship and shared character perspective that showcased the internal conflict of love and guilt that is often associated with these relationships. I loved it and cannot wait for more!

// have you read any romance books with a big age difference? which are your favourite? //

Jen

4 thoughts on “Against the Rules: A story of taking a chance at love and rolling the dice to risk it all.

    1. Yes it was a bit unconventional, especially with the connection between best friends and a father figure but the author managed to write it in a way that didn’t feel too confronting or weird. She really explored the conflicting guilt and love that would occur in such a scenario and I found it very interesting. It was definitely worth the read 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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