Monday, February 23, 2015

Review: The Deal by Elle Kennedy

The Deal by Elle Kennedy
Series: Off-Campus, Book 1
Publisher: Elle Kennedy
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance The Deal Cover
Release Date: February 24, 2015
Source: Author
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N
Elle Kennedy Reading Order

She’s about to make a deal with the college bad boy…
Hannah Wells has finally found someone who turns her on. But while she might be confident in every other area of her life, she’s carting around a full set of baggage when it comes to sex and seduction. If she wants to get her crush’s attention, she'll have to step out of her comfort zone and make him take notice…even if it means tutoring the annoying, childish, cocky captain of the hockey team in exchange for a pretend date.

…and it's going to be oh so good
All Garrett Graham has ever wanted is to play professional hockey after graduation, but his plummeting GPA is threatening everything he's worked so hard for. If helping a sarcastic brunette make another guy jealous will help him secure his position on the team, he’s all for it. But when one unexpected kiss leads to the wildest sex of both their lives, it doesn’t take long for Garrett to realize that pretend isn't going to cut it. Now he just has to convince Hannah that the man she wants looks a lot like him.

The Deal is flat-out fantastic! If you don’t already read Elle Kennedy’s work (and you should), her first New Adult romance is one that should make fans of the genre sit up and take notice. The Deal is brimming with energy, excitement, love, and heartbreak. Add in the crackling chemistry between its two leads and some seriously snappy dialogue and The Deal is everything I could want in a book.

Hannah is an intelligent, talented young woman who is mature for her age, but not so mature as to be unrealistic. She’s also a rape survivor, one you have to admire for her strength and determination not to let what happened to her control life. I instantly adored Hannah; she’s a fleshed-out heroine with amazing strength and heartbreaking vulnerability. She’s also knocked off her feet when Garrett blows into her life like a whirlwind. And speaking of our hero…how can I do him justice? Garrett is a modern-day rogue – hockey royalty with an overabundance of charm and the talent, looks, and brain to back it up. He is so much fun to read about that I’m pretty sure I had a grin on my face for most of The Deal. Garrett may not be perfect, but he’s a perfectly fabulous hero. His attitude made me laugh, but his caring heart and hidden wounds sealed the deal in terms of making him irresistible. Hannah may mistake Garrett for a dumb jock, but the whip-smart History major quickly proves her wrong. He’s struggling with one particular class and in order to stay on the hockey team he needs Hannah’s help. Though she doesn’t want to tutor him, Garrett has a way of getting under her skin and convincing her to help him study. I loved watching these two become friends. So much so, in fact, that when the sexual tension started to boil over I put the book down for a bit because I was so worried it wouldn’t be as much fun once the two of them moved from friends to lovers.

I needn’t have worried. Ms. Kennedy masterfully delves deeper into Hannah and Garrett’s characters as they fall in love. Their sparkling chemistry continues to dazzle, but there’s added layers of depth to the story when Hannah and Garrett open up to one another. It’s a testament to Ms. Kennedy’s talent how The Deal can go from sexy to fun to emotionally raw, all so smoothly that you can’t stop reading because you have to know what will happen next. Every obstacle Garrett and Hannah face, every scar that is revealed adds to their journey both as individuals and as a couple.

It’s impossible for me to pick a favorite Elle Kennedy book, but The Deal is definitely high on that list. Garrett and Hannah will make you laugh out loud and then touch your heart. Their story is sexy, charming, and simply wonderful. I loved The Deal from beginning to end and I cannot wait to read the next Off-Campus novel!

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.