BXTCHES Gotta Warn: Come close and listen carefully BXTCHES. When you pull this masterpiece up on Amazon or Goodreads or wherever it is that you browse for your book boyfriends, one of the first things you will read is “A standalone novel” and then you may become giddy with excitement because you’re thinking that you can jump right into Lance and Poppy without first meeting Alex and Violet or Miller and Sunny or Randy and Lily and I’m here to educate you BXTCHES and tell you, if you go that route, you’re gonna be making a mistake. First, this is a phenomenal ensemble cast and series, which you would be missing out on if you dove headfirst into book #6. Also, Pucked Off gives us Lance and Poppy, and we first met them in Pucked Up (book #2), so it’s just much easier if you were to go in order, trust a BXTCH, I wouldn’t let you down. Let’s get started.
Pucked Off will be told through the POV’s of both Lance and Poppy.
Let’s back the puck up a bit and review. It’s been a while since I acquainted myself with Pucked (book #1), so it’s difficult for me to remember if we actually met Lance then. I will say, if we did, it was brief. But, I know with certainty that Lance was brought to us in Miller and Sunny’s story. It was also where we briefly meet Poppy. If you’re still scratching your head, in the beginning of Pucked Up, after boozing it up at a bar, Miller, Randy, and Lance went back to Lance’s place to continue the party, and tagging along were some ladies. Included in the that group was Poppy. If you’re still a little foggy, she is the one who wiped off the dick that was drawn on Miller’s forehead.
I haven’t yet read any reviews on Pucked Off, but from what I have seen on social media thus far, some are upset that it’s Poppy getting the go here. Maybe upset is not the right term, I just think lots of fans were expecting Tash. But here’s some truth BXTCHES, when we meet Poppy (while she is scrubbing a cock off of a forehead) we learn that she actually knew Lance when she was younger. When we learn that fun bit of information, that was my clue that when we got to Lance, it was going to be Lance + Poppy. But, I can understand where a lot of you were wanting/hoping to get more insight into Lance and Tash. Well, your wish will be granted, just maybe not the way that you had anticipated.
Poppy first met Lance when she was just a kid and he transferred to her school. Her first encounters with him came when he would tug a bit on her ponytail, both gingers, solidarity and all that jazz. Fast forward a bit and Poppy’s older sister is dragging her to a party, one that she was entirely too young to be at. She soon finds herself in a circle and before she realizes it, she is about to enter Seven Minutes in Heaven with. . .Lance. Not wanting to embarrass her (or him, I suppose), Lance waits till the last minute or so to lay one on her. So, at twelve years old (she did lie and say she was fourteen, teetering on crossing over to fifteen) she receives her first kiss from Lance Romero and she has never forgotten it. When she finds herself at his house all those years later, she is pretty devastated that he doesn’t remember her at all and is even more upset when he takes her friend to his room.
Lance’s backstory is fucked up and that’s me being polite. When our introduction to Lance began, we knew he was in some sort of a relationship with Tash, the trainer for the team. They then make an appearance at the engagement party of Alex and Violet, causing quite a scene, and we began to salivate, wanting to know what the fuck was going on between them-what exactly was their story? So, going into this book, here is what we already know-we know that Lance and Tash were off and on and we know that Tash lost her job with the team because of the relationship between her and Lance, we were also led to believe (somewhat) that Lance’s reputation is one that enjoys many women and enjoys the run of the mill puck bunny and maybe that was why the relationship between him and Tash was strained at best. But other than a small side story, we weren’t given too much more, every cameo raised more questions than it did in providing answers.
There isn’t too much I can tell you regarding Lance and Tash. . .I will say that you get some answers quite early on and if your image of Lance was one of dislike, it will change, quickly. And if your vision of Tash was one of hope, well hells bells, that’s gonna change too.
Back to Poppy. Poppy is a massage therapist who happens to get scheduled to work on Lance, which is how they reconnect. Well, it’s how Poppy reconnects with Lance, not Lance with her, considering he has no recollection of the girl with the red ponytail who he swapped spit with in a closet or the woman who was at his house just a year ago. And if you haven’t yet figured it out, that is how Lance and Poppy eventually become a Lance + Poppy.
There are so many different avenues that brings this story to fruition. Lance’s backstory, while fucked up, is heartbreaking. It is filled with pain, it is filled with regret, it is filled with anger, it is filled with doubt, it is filled with grief. . .it was painful enough to force a BXTCH to lay it down and take some deep breaths, but no worries-hope is on the horizon.
While I believe that this is a fantastic ensemble series, this particular book is more zeroed in on Lance and Poppy, which is probably why Helena Hunting puts it as a standalone (but still heed my warning). We do get visits from the ones we have already fallen in love with or at the very least get a “Where Are They Now” type of catch up. Other than Lance and Poppy, the other main character that brings relevance is Tash. You’re not gonna like her, she is written in the most bitchtacular way that you may get pretty pissed at yourself for ever thinking that a Lance/Tash story was even a possibility, but that just adds so much more to an already fantastic story-don’t ya think?
I could say that the sex in Pucked Off is panty drop worthy and it is, but this isn’t the same as what Alex and Violet have or the need that Randy and Lily have. . .don’t misunderstand me, it’s hot, it’s everything you would want and have come to expect with this series. The difference with Pucked Off versus the rest of this series is Lance. As hot as he is and regardless of the experience he brings to the bedroom, it’s more than just the fuck, it’s more than just the conquest. It’s much more about the unearthing of who Lance is and who Lance is when he is with Poppy. . .it’s almost carthartic. Don’t worry BXTCHES, you still may need to light one up after.
I have loved every single installment in this series. And with each new book, I think that there is no way I will love it the way I loved the previous book(s) and truthfully, I love each couple in this series in a different way, but for me personally, Randy and Lily, barely beating out the other ones, landed in the top spot. . .that is until Lance came along. While the other books gave us some serious laugh out loud humor, Pucked Off didn’t. There were funny moments for sure, but that’s not what it was about. This book came from a different part of Helena Huntings soul, it had to. . .the spectrum of emotions that this story covered had this BXTCH all over the place. I was happy, I was sad, I was angry, I was in love, I was ready to cut a bitch for real. My advice is to just hang on real tight, because Lance is going to take you down a bumpy road and from the looks at that fuck hot cover, you just know it’s gonna be a great journey.