ARC Review by Annie: On The Fly by P.J. Trebelhorn


Courtney Abbott is a gold-medal-winning Olympian who always dreamed of playing in the NHL. But breaking into a man’s game is nearly impossible, and she’s put her all into playing in a semi-pro women’s ice hockey league.

Concert violinist Lana Caruso and her teenage son return home to care for her father. The move is only temporary, though—as soon as he recovers, Lana plans to return to Chicago and her position in the orchestra.

Court knows Lana isn’t going to be sticking around for long, but she’s used to living life on the fly. She doesn’t think for even a second she’ll end up truly falling for Lana, but when hearts are on the line, love becomes the one game she can’t afford to lose.  

Goodreads | Bold Strokes Books | Amazon
Release Date: September 1st


No rating. DNF at 58%.

On the Fly left me feeling really disappointed and frustrated. The reason for the frustration was mostly because I just couldn’t get into the story and found both protagonists rather flat and one-dimensional. The blurb made the book sound so awesome and then just… nothing happened.

Lana is only in town for a limited time, until her dad is well enough to work again. She initially meets Courtney when she’s working at her families pizzeria, where Courtney and a teammate go after a game. The second time they meet is at Courtney’s second workplace: A realtor’s office. Courtney works there because her hockey career alone is not enough to support her financially. She happens to be the realtor Lana has an appointment with.
Lana is looking for a place to live while she’s in town, because her parents home is too small for everyone. Also what grown-up independent mother really wants to move in with her parents again?
From the beginning they feel drawn to each other and while they both say that they can’t and don’t want to start anything serious – because Lana is only there temporarily to help her family – from the get go they behave as if Lana will stay forever and soon somehow just slide into a relationship.

There was no tension between the characters and just nothing happened. You know how we sometimes say we’d even read the most domestic shit for characters we love? This was all domestic stuff and no excitement and I honestly just did not care for either protagonist. I especially didn’t like the casual biphobia by Courtney towards Lana.

Perhaps this just wasn’t my book because I went in with false expectations. I thought the hockey bit would be a bit more prominently featured based on the cover and the title of this book. But the hockey aspect in this romance is miniscule and up until the point I decided to not finish, almost non-existent. And the bit of hockey that was on page was exasperating and hurtful, because most of it featured homophobic bullshit by one of Courtney’s teammates. Which just seemed to exist to create tension!? For me that part of the story just fell flat as well, since it isn’t handled by any of the coaching staff or the league, or anyone really. Since I didn’t finish it might possibly get called out later in the book, but since I already had a hard enough time with the book as it was, I decided to call it quits.


PJ Trebelhorn was born and raised in the greater metropolitan area of Portland, Oregon. Her love of sports — mainly baseball and ice hockey — was fueled in part by her father’s interests. She likes to brag about the fact that her uncle managed the Milwaukee Brewers for five years, and the Chicago Cubs for one year.

PJ now resides in western New York with Cheryl, her partner of many years, and their menagerie of pets. When not writing or reading, PJ spends her time rooting for the Flyers, Phillies, and Eagles, or watching movies.

Genre: Contemporary Orientation: Bisexual Orientation: Lesbian Pairing: F/F Publisher: Bold Strokes Books Review Tag: Sports

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