I was on a popular social media site the other day and giggled at a conversation I “overheard.” A woman said she liked hockey romance books, and her friends innocently asked, “Wait…so hockey romance books are an actual thing?”
Yes! They are *so* a thing. The first romance book that I read with a hockey player hero was Rachel Gibson’s “Simply Irresistible” back in 1998 or 1999. Oh, I fell in love with that book. Finally, an athlete hero! (They were probably scattered around and available here and there, but this was the first one that I discovered)
I was a tomboy and played deck hockey in leagues for years, so all of the guys in my life (aka boyfriend / guy friends) played hockey. These were guys that taught me how to play the game, showed patience, and were always willing to help me improve. Sure, they weren’t in the NHL, but I wanted to see those qualities come to life through a hockey hero in the romances I devoured every week.
When Rachel’s “See Jane Score” came out, I was hooked! From then on I hunted for hockey-themed books. I bought all of Rachel’s books, plus Deirdre Martin’s hockey series, as well as other Harlequin authors who had started prominently featuring hockey players or athletes in their books. For me, it was a natural evolution to want to read about athlete heroes. I sought out that theme in the romance books I loved so much.
Now, romance books with hockey heroes (and baseball, football, etc) are really starting to come into the limelight. Authors like Jaci Burton, Kelli Jamieson, Cassandra Carr, V.L. Locey and Kate Willoughby, as well as countless others, are feeding that love with hunky hockey guys in their books, and we can’t get enough.
So my question is, why do *you* love hockey romance? What makes these athletes so damn fun to read about? Did you play hockey? Are you a mad hockey fan? Let me know. 🙂