Friday 30 December 2016

Face-Off at the Altar By Toni Aleo Blog Tour #bookreview #excerpt #teasers

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Markus Reeves is sucking. Big-time. Toiling away on a minor-league hockey team hundreds of miles away from home, he's watching his dreams of an NHL career fade away. Add in the lingering guilt he has over the dramatic demise of his relationship with college girlfriend, Mekena, and he's a mess on and off the ice.

But the family of his heart, the Sinclairs, won't let Markus suffer any longer. When he arrives himself back in Nashville for a trial run on the Assassins, it feels like his life may be making a turn for the better. If only he could get Mekena to forgive him...

Mekena Preston has been hurting since fleeing Nashville following the horror of Markus's betrayal with her sister. Now a professional photographer, Mekena finds herself in the same place at the same time with Markus to celebrate Lucy and Benji Paxton's wedding. Neither of them has been able to move on—and they're starting to wonder if they really want to.

They're headed for a face-off at the altar unless they can confront their past and unearth the truth about what really happened on that fateful night.

“You are, by far, the most patient man I know.”
Baylor grimaced as she took Dawson from Markus’s outstretched hands. He smiled as Dawson looked at him innocently. He knew the little guy didn’t mean to puke all over him and he wasn’t upset, but he was trying to figure out a way to get to the house and shower before he had to talk to Mekena. He highly doubted that baby puke would be an aphrodisiac. Maybe it would be? Huh.
He wasn’t going to try, though.  
As Baylor cuddled Dawson against her, Markus waved her off. “It’s no big deal. He’s a baby.”
She smiled shyly. “Yes, but Ashlyn pooped on you too.”
He grinned as he shrugged, trying not to laugh. It was a tough rehearsal for Dawson, Ashlyn, and Markus. Puke and poop were big-time stars during the hour of watching the Sinclairs and Grace Justice try to put together a wedding. He wasn’t sure what was funnier, Jace glaring as Jordie walked with Avery, or Ashlyn farting and then realizing she had just shit all over him. It was a toss-up, but then Dawson decided to puke down the front of his shirt, and he figured he was now a substitute for a baby rag. “I volunteered.”
“Still, we’re really sorry,” Avery said, holding Ashlyn close as she rocked her back and forth. “I understand if you don’t want to watch her ever again.”
“Nonsense,” he said, laughing as he tucked his hands into his pockets and looked around. He spotted Mekena at the front of the altar, taking pictures of random things. He wasn’t sure if she was done, but maybe he could slip away. “How much longer until y’all are done?”
“We’re done, but Lucy and Benji have some pre-wedding pictures they’re having done with Angie.”
“So Mekena isn’t done?”
Avery smiled. “Nope, she’s got a bit.”
“Can you pass a message for me?”
“Let her know that I went back to the cabin to shower and clean up?”
“Yeah, of course. I’ll tell Jace to tell her since I’m taking Ashlyn to bed.”
“Cool, thanks,” he said, kissing her cheek and then Baylor’s, before rubbing Dawson’s head. “I’ll see you guys in the morning.”
Before he could get far, though, Baylor smiled. “Thanks again.”
“Anytime. I mean that.”
Avery smiled. “Thanks.”
“Also, good luck,” Baylor added.
Flashing them both a big grin, he nodded. “I need it.”
Heading out the back, he made it back to the cabin quickly. When he entered, though, Mr. Right was sitting on the windowsill howling. “Whoa, man. What’s up?”
Meoooooowwwwwwww, he wailed, with his mouth wide open as his hair stood on end.
“Bro, I don’t know what to say. I don’t speak your language. Are you singing? Do you want me to sing too? Meoooowwwwww,” he said, and Mr. Right looked back at him, almost with a glare. “We should add some beat to that and make a remix,” Markus joked as the cat wailed. Deciding that was a good idea, he pulled out his phone and started to beatbox as the cat wailed, recording it on his SnapChat. The cat must have realized what he was doing because he looked back, scowling, and Markus hid his phone. He didn’t want to admit it, but Mr. Right kind of freaked him out.

My name is Toni Aleo and I’m a total dork.
I am a wife, mother of two and a bulldog, and also a hopeless romantic.
I am the biggest Shea Weber fan ever, and can be found during hockey season with my nose pressed against the Bridgestone Arena’s glass, watching my Nashville Predators play!
When my nose isn’t pressed against the glass, I enjoy going to my husband and son’s hockey games, my daughter’s dance competition, hanging with my best friends, taking pictures, scrapbooking, and reading the latest romance novel.
I have a slight Disney and Harry Potter obsession, I love things that sparkle, I love the color pink, I might have been a Disney Princess in a past life… probably Belle.
… and did I mention I love hockey?

Author Links

Source:  eARC for Honest Review Courtesy of Author and Ardent Prose
Genre: Adult Sports Romance
Part 9 of a series but can be read as a standalone

My Face off at the Altar Review . . . 

It has been forever since I read anything by Toni Aleo.  Given this opportunity I jumped at the chance even though I'm a few books behind.    This book is technically part of the Assassins series but it also combines characters from the Bellevue Bullies Series which sadly I haven't read yet.  This caused me at times to be a bit lost with some of the connections but I was able to follow for the most part.

Marcus Reeves and Mekena Preston were college sweethearts until one night changed everything.  Then a couple years later fate has brought these two back together.  Now all that has to happen is for Marcus to tell the truth and for Mekena to actually listen. Which isn't as easy as it sounds.

Mekena is positive she knows what went down and has a shield made of concrete preventing her to really know the truth.  But what these two do know is that they still love each other.  After the truth comes out these two have a journey to find happiness with each other.  And what a truth it was.  Toni did such a great job with Skylar that you couldn't but hate her and feel for her at the same time.

Sport romances are one of my biggest guilty pleasures and I've always been a fan of Toni's and this story was sweet as most second chance romances are but . . . and yes there is a but.  It was too sweet and schmaltzy at times.  For a big part some of the only dialogues between Marcus and Mekena were ' I love you' and I love you, too ' or 'I love you' and I love you more'.  It got a bit much at times that ruined the seriousness of the story for me.  However, I do understand that it is young love and I remember being that sickly sweet during that era but living it and reading it are two totally different things.

Now since I read an ARC there were so timeline issues and discrepancies within the story and I do hope that many of the discrepancies were caught because it could confuse some details but otherwise it was a a bit long but super sweet story about second chances.

Even though it was too sweet for me at times it doesn't mean I won't continue with this series as there are many more players whom need to find love.  Can't wait for more.  Plus NOW I have to for sure read the Bellevue Bullies series so I can get the skinny on all the Sinclairs.

3 . 5 Second Chances Thumbs up! 

thumbs upthumbs upthumbs up  . 5


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