Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Review ~ Firebird by Jennifer Loring

Title: Firebird
Series: The Firebird Trilogy Book 1
Author: Jennifer Loring
Genre: Contemporary Romance (erotic elements)
Published: October 20, 2015 Publisher: Limitless Publishing
Stephanie Hartwell is a journalist chasing the story of her career… 
When superstar hockey player and notorious bad boy Aleksandr Volynsky is traded to the Seattle Earthquakes in a blockbuster deal, Stephanie demands the opportunity to prove herself by scoring an exclusive interview with a man with no love for the media…the same man she once thought, as a naïve teenager, she’d someday marry. 
An Olympian and Stanley Cup Champion, Aleksandr has achieved every goal he’s ever set… 
Now expected to carry a failing team on his shoulders, Aleksandr’s troubles deepen when he encounters Stephanie after a season-opening loss. His lifestyle of drinking and random hookups has been a futile attempt to forget the beautiful tomboy who stole his heart nine years ago. And worse, fame and fortune have made it impossible for him to trust anyone—especially Stephanie, who is engaged to another man. 
Romance rekindles, but tragedy reveals Aleksandr’s dark side…
Being with Aleksandr in the first place jeopardizes Stephanie’s journalistic integrity and threatens her career, and when he spirals out of control, it reawakens fears from her own history, making her unable to commit to a future with him. 
When Aleksandr discovers the truth behind his self-destructive behavior, will his newfound self-awareness be enough to convince Stephanie to give him one last chance… 
Or will his revelation drive her away for good?


I've wanted to read this since I saw the cover revealed. This is probably one of my favourite covers of the year and the story sounded just as good. Therefore I couldn't resist signing up to the review tour.

Firebird is a mixed read for me and I'm not quite sure which side of the fence I fall on. There were parts I liked, and other parts that failed to hold my attention.

To start with the parts I liked: there was always something going on. Plenty happens in Firebird and I think it's all tied together well. Similarly, I believed in Alex's authenticity. I didn't always understand what he was saying but I think the author did a good job of making his Russian side believable without going over the top with stereotypes. I'm assuming she has some knowledge or researched Russian culture because it came across that way in the book.

Moreover I liked the hockey element. Whilst brief, who doesn't love the bad boy of his sport, right? I didn't always understand the terms used for plays and such, so I may have imagined sections differently to as described but I still enjoyed them.

As for the romance, it started off well. I really looked forward to where the author was going to take it. However, this is where the majority of my issues stemmed from. It just didn't hold my interest. I felt the spark and chemistry died early on between Alex and Stephanie. As the book progressed emotions and situations seemed repetitive and I didn't really understand why they did what they did. I don't know why, I just didn't connect with their relationship, there wasn't the intensity I like.

A part of it may have been down to the fact so much was crammed in. Firebird is on the longer side and I said it was a positive thing. However, it was also a negative in my eyes too. It meant certain things were pushed to one side in favour of a new issue and maybe underdeveloped slightly. There were also unnecessary details or filler information where the author described every action made by the characters which became monotonous.

Overall I still don't know where I stand with this book. It wasn't bad, and I enjoyed it for the most part. I just think I went in expecting too much. If you like hockey romances this may be for you.


Jennifer Loring's short fiction has appeared in numerous magazines, webzines, and anthologies. In 2013, she won Crystal Lake Publishing's inaugural Tales from the Lake writing competition; in 2014, DarkFuse published her novella Conduits, and in May 2015, Omnium Gatherum released her debut novel, Those of My Kind. She recently signed a deal for a contemporary romance trilogy with Limitless Publishing; the first book, Firebird, was published on October 20, 2015. Jennifer lives in Philadelphia, PA with her husband, their turtle, and two basset hounds. She is currently at work on the second book in the Firebird Trilogy as well as a paranormal romance.

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