Comeback (Portland Storm #6)
Nicklas Ericsson is an addict. He’s also a star goaltender with the NHL’s Portland Storm, or he was until his addiction changed everything. Now he’s throwing himself into doing all the necessary things to pave his path to a comeback, both in his personal life and on the ice. Nicky’s run out of options, and now his sister and her children are in Portland. They need help he has no clue how to provide, though, and figuring it out might derail all the progress he’s made.
For a few years now, Jessica Lynch has been running the Portland office for the Light the Lamp Foundation. Between her work and several people from her past, she knows more than she’d like about addicts. One lesson she’s learned is that even when addicts try to turn their lives around, more often than not, they fail. That’s why she takes a hands off approach, keeping her heart well away from the addicts she works with, like Nicky Ericsson.
Nicky’s recovery efforts put him directly in Jessica’s path, and she can’t ignore his very real need for help. Where Nicky is concerned, she can’t separate her emotions. His niece and nephews further complicate her efforts to guard her heart. The attraction between Nicky and Jessica is instant and mutual, but she’s misplaced her trust too many times before. Can he prove that he won't fall back into old habits in time to complete the perfect comeback?
My Review: 5 Stars
I don’t know where to start with this one. I love Catherine Gayle’s Portland Storm series and since we have only had a few glimpses at Nicky (and most of them weren’t the best) I didn’t know how I was going to feel about this book. Not only was I not sure because of how we have seen Nicky, I wasn’t sure since it more than touches on addiction. As the wife of an addict this topic can be very hard on me. So with all of that, let me just say that I LOVED this book. It is beautifully written. The characters have depth and the book really gets you in the feels. I have read books before and have been emotional, but this book was a first for me because I had actual tears coming down my face (so if you are an emotional reader, don’t read this in public unless you want to be asked multiple times if you are ok).
Nicky is making his comeback from addiction, in his professional and personal life. After a rough few years, he finally gets the chance to get back between the pipes for the Portland Storm and he hopes he doesn’t let anyone down this time. On the personal side of things, he has finally gotten to the point where he feels like he can start being honest about his issues and wants to help out more with the Light the Lamp Foundation (Kally’s foundation) since he was helped by a similar program. He has his head on pretty straight and he is in a good place when he is thrown for a loop. His sister, niece and nephews come into town and he isn’t sure if he can handle all that comes with it (I am not going into detail because it is a very large part of the plot and I hate to spoil things for people, but I will say that the tears started to pool here and eventually they just spilled over).
Jessica works for the Portland office of the Light the Lamp Foundation and in doing so she meets with a lot of addicts and having been married to one as well as raised by and with one she has a lot of experience and has been hurt by addicts too many times to count. She has decided that she can never be more than friends with someone with a history of addiction. She is pretty good at keeping that promise to herself, but every time she meets with Nicky about the Foundation she knows that he could test that decision. But when things start to get bad for Nicky she somehow finds herself being the person he turns to when he needs help or just needs to talk. The more time she spends with him, the harder things become for her.
Ok, so I’m stopping there so there are no spoilers, but I will say that the friendship/relationship that grows between these two is great. They seemed to be able to talk to each other about anything and they take their time getting to know each other (asking a lot of geeky questions, which as a geek, I loved). Like I said before it was beautifully written. The beach scene in particular sticks out in my head, it was a great celebration of life and love and it comes across the page beautifully. This book had some humor, some heartache and so much love (Nicky/his niece, his niece/his sister, all the Portland Storm wives) and I want to read it over and over again. Nicky stole my heart. His character, his heart, his humor just got me and I was cheering for him to fight the good fight and show his addiction that he is stronger than it. So now I sit anxiously waiting for Babs’ book and the continuation of the Portland Storm series that I love so much!
***Let me finish this post by informing everyone that every time I think about this book/see it this pops into my head... Enjoy!!!***