Cold Day in the Sun by Sara Biren

I am not a sportsball person. I’ve never been into sports of any kind, really, outside of going to the occasional MLB or college football game (the latter always for a friend or family member’s team). So a romance that centers around a sport? Ha, as if … And hockey? My least favorite sport of them all? Forget about it.

Except … I LOVED IT. Cold Day in the Sun by Sara Biren swept me off my feet, and now I’m low-key obsessed with hockey/sports romances.

Holland Delviss wants to be known for her talent as a hockey player, not a hockey player who happens to be a girl. But when her school team is selected to be featured and televised as part of HockeyFest, her status as the only girl on the boys’ team makes her the lead story. Not everyone is thrilled with Holland’s new fame, but there’s one person who fiercely supports her, and it’s the last person she expects (and definitely the last person she should be falling for): her bossy team captain, Wes.

In case it wasn’t clear, this is a YA book — but the romantical swoons are REAL.

I absolutely adored Holland, who has to work harder and be better to prove herself, just because she’s a girl. Her situation is exaggerated because she’s a girl on the boys’ hockey team, but I feel like Biren really captured what it means to be a girl and a woman in the world today — having to prove your worth and your value, simply because you were born without a penis. (Hey there, patriarchy. You can suck it!)

I loved the way Biren showed that this was just part of Holland’s reality, and how it took something extreme happening for Wes to finally “get it” (and understand why she was so hesitant about being in a relationship with him, and making that relationship public). At the same time, Wes’s feelings are just too pure and I found myself falling for him right alongside Holland.

Their dynamic as teammates, friends, and then more is really well developed, and I loved seeing their progression throughout the book.

Cold Day in the Sun does such a good job of showcasing a realistic and charming romance, alongside the ugliness of sexism and misogyny that girls and women deal with on a daily basis. Fleshed out with Holland’s other interests (notably her secret music blog and obsession with 80s power ballads), a lovable and boisterous family dynamic for both of the main characters, and the gorgeous setting of winter in Minnesota, Cold Day in the Sun offers readers plenty to sink their figurative teeth into.

Cold Day in the Sun brings on the swoon in a big way, with a thoughtful and thought-provoking plot line and well-developed characters. Look for it in stores March 12th.


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