Breaking the Ice (Belen’s Review)

Title: Breaking the Ice
Author: Tali Spencer
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: April 19th 2017
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 86 pages
Reviewed by: Belen
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 2.8 stars out of 5


For Matt Wasko, February in Wisconsin is the best time of the year, and ice fishing on Lake Winnebago is his idea of heaven. With shanty villages cropping up, barbeques on the ice, monster sturgeon to spear, and plenty of booze to keep everybody warm, things couldn’t be better—until a surprise storm hits and an uninvited guest shows up at his frozen doorstep.

Matt’s not happy to see John Lutz, a coworker who cracks lame gay jokes at Matt’s expense. But John’s flimsy new ice shelter got blown across the lake, and it wouldn’t be right to leave even a jerk outside to freeze. Would it?

In the close quarters of Matt’s fabulous ice shanty, between stripping off wet clothes, misadventures with bait, and a fighting trophy-sized walleye, the two men discover creative ways to keep the cold at bay. And when John confesses his long-running attraction, Matt must decide if he can believe in John’s change of heart—and crack the ice for a chance at finding love.

States of Love: Stories of romance that span every corner of the United States.

This is a quick, low angst, low steam romance with a HEA.

Every February Matt Wasko takes two weeks off and goes ice fishing to get away from it all. Unfortunately this year one of his jackass co-workers follows him out to the ice. Turns out John Lutz, his nemesis, is actually very interested in Matt. John’s definitely gotten off on the wrong foot, but is determined to try to put things right.

I liked that Matt is out and proud, the way he deals with the taunts and insults from his coworkers and John, and how he doesn’t let them get him down for the most part.

Now keep in mind this is a really quick read so a lot happens in a very short span of time. Because of that I didn’t really get over John’s past behavior in time to buy their initial romantic interaction. I needed more conversations, more opportunities of how they interacted together, and more relationship growth. Instead the story moves from their first tentative romance moments and then jumps at hyper speed to the HEA.

It was okay overall but I wish there had been more.

States of Love series

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Galley copy of Breaking the Ice provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange of an honest review.


I am an unapologetic book addict/lover. I'm happiest when reading and I spend most of my time with my Kindle, which is never far from my hand. I love to be told a good story! I mostly read fiction: Romance, Erotica, Young Adult, New Adult, Paranormal (shifters? Yes, please!), a little BDSM when I'm in the mood, and I love a good ménage story. I DEFINITELY PREFER A HFN/HEA! My biggest no-no's are cheating, miscommunication / misunderstanding plots, unnecessary angst, and cliffhangers.

A sampling of my "Favorite M/M" stories:

Carry the Ocean The Half of Us Red Dirt Heart Adulting 101 Tied Up In Knots
Shelter the Sea Manties in a Twist David, Renewed Ethan who Loved Carter Perfect Imperfections
Wolfsong Fight the Tide How to Walk Like A Man The Lightning-Struck Heart Forging the Future