Neutral Zone: A Christmas Railers Novella (CrabbyPatty’s Review)

Title: Neutral Zone: A Christmas Railers Novella (Harrisburg Railers #7)
Author: R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey
Publisher: Love Lane Books Ltd
Release Date: November 25, 2018
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance, Holidays, Sports
Page Count: N/A
Reviewed by: CrabbyPatty
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5


Tennant Rowe has it all, a boyfriend he adores, a loving family, and a career on the rise. He’s sure of his place in the world, and the future can only get brighter. Then one night, in a flash of skates and sticks, life changes forever. Getting back on the ice is Ten’s priority, and experts tell him that it’s just a matter of time.

Jared watches his lover fall in more ways than one, and when tragedy strikes, even the strongest of relationships are tested. Ten is strong, but Jared has to be stronger to help the man who holds his heart. Only, he has to admit that maybe it isn’t just him who can make Ten whole again.

Jared and Ten’s love is forever, but the rocky path to the romantic Christmas Jared had planned may be hard to travel.

FYI – this is not a stand-alone book and you’ll want to read at least Book #1 and #6 in the Harrisburg Railers Hockey series (and maybe Ryker Book #1 in the Owatonna U Hockey series) to get the background on Mads and Ten.

Ten is in rehab recovering from a brain injury (suffered at the end of Book #6) and Mads is back home in Harrisburg with the team. There’s a beautiful balance here between Mads wanting to wrap Ten in bubble wrap and protect him from harm while hoping that Ten will return with confidence to his former glory on the ice. And Ten struggles with loneliness and the fear that he will never regain fluent speech/thought or balance sufficient to return to hockey.

But all this worry is firmly grounded in the abundant love and admiration that Mads and Ten have for one another. I love how there is little manufactured angst here, but rather a lovely mix of hockey, family, hope and love (with a low steam level, which feels appropriate here). I highly recommend reading “Neutral Zone” and give it 4.5 stars.

Harrisburg Railers Hockey Series

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Neutral Zone provided by the authors in exchange of an honest review.


Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.  Frederick Douglas I distinctly remember that day in school when, all of a sudden, those squiggles on the page made sense and I could read. It has changed my life in ways I still cannot comprehend. My favorite M/M tropes are friends-to-lovers, murder/mysteries, amnesia, hurt/healing and historicals. Shifters, vampires, paranormal? Meh ... not in my wheelhouse, but I'm a sucker for a well-written well-plotted book, no matter the genre. Favorite authors includes Brandon Witt, Rick R. Reed, Abigail Roux, Jay Northcote, JL Merrow, KJ Charles, Lane Hayes, Marshall Thornton and so many more. A few "badges" from NetGalley: 100 Book Reviews Reviews Published Professional Reader