Pucked Up (The Pucked Series, Book #2) by Helena Hunting
BXTCHES Gotta Warn: When you go to “one-click” this book (you will, trust), it’s going to say “STANDALONE ROMANTIC COMEDY”. The romantic comedy part is spot on, it’s the standalone part that I wish to discuss with you BXTCHES today. Normally, if I feel that a book, that happens to be part of a series, can be read as a standalone, I will share that with you. This book cannot, let me enlighten you. 1 This book is going to feature Miller (Buck), who happens to be the step-brother to Violet, who happens to be the focus of the first book, Pucked. Now, Violet and Buck have a chemistry that you do not want to miss any of, and that chemistry goes back to the first book. I know, I know, that sounds like it’s not a good enough reason, again, trust a BXTCH. 2 The other half of Pucked Up is Sunny, who happens to be Alex Waters’ sister, who happens to be the other half of Pucked. You get how this kinda comes around full circle? So, in order to understand the issues that are instantly between Buck and Alex, not to mention the references to Pucked that are scattered all throughout this book, it’s easier to just read book #1 first. It won’t be a chore, the book is fan-fucking-tablous! Trust.
Pucked Up will be told SOLELY through Miller’s (Buck) POV. **In Pucked, we were introduced to Buck Butterson, whose real name is Miller. Sunny refers to him as Miller in this book, so that is how I’m going to refer to him. Cool?
When we left Miller behind in Pucked, we knew he was beginning to get somewhat involved with Sunny (Alex’s sister). Of course, at first, it was hard to determine whether he was just working Sunny to get back at Alex (for Violet) or if Miller is truly interested in pursuing his chances with Sunny. We learn almost from go in Pucked Up, which way he’s headed and he is actually falling for Sunny, for real.
The other thing that Miller learns pretty early on. . .his past is truly a BXTCH and is coming back with a vengeance to haunt him. The main culprit is going to be social media and unfortunately for him, he can’t control how pictures with bunnies/fans get spun. Also unfortunately for him, is the fact that Alex and Lily (Sunny’s BFF) are not Team Miller, so every time a unsavory picture shows up of Miller on social media, it adds more fuel to their hate fire and Sunny is a bit inexperienced and allowing others to dictate how she should feel, which most of the time seems to equal disaster for Miller.
A couple of things we learn about Miller in Pucked Up. . .first, he’s dyslexic. Which affects his ability to do the simple things people do everyday, like text. It’s also something he doesn’t discuss much and not a whole lot of people know about. He’s also very private about his philanthropic ways. The reason I mention both of those things is because they become an important part of dissecting Miller.
The main chunk of this story is Miller and Sunny figuring out a way to navigate the beginnings of a relationship with all of the scrutiny that is going to come with it because of who Miller is, which is a professional hockey player (just in case you decided to be a little rebel and not read the first book or maybe you’re not good with word association and wasn’t able to gather that from the title of the book). Now, I’m sure it would be difficult enough if it was just Miller the hockey player, but it’s Miller the “hockey player manwhore” who loves his hockey hookers. It’s also Miller who lives/works in Chicago and Sunny who is based in Canada. It’s having a brother and a BFF who isn’t even willing to allow the word chance to enter their vocabulary. It’s friends who are more interested in partying, which is having the wrong effect on your reputation. So, there is a lot of factors that are determined to see to it that Miller + Sunny ≠ HEA.
The supporting characters in Pucked Up deliver. I was so happy that Violet is featured often. I LOVED her so much in Pucked and the relationship between her and Miller is a bit more developed in Pucked Up, you certainly can feel the love they have for one another, and none of the humor is lost between them. We’re also going to be introduced (he did get a mention in book #1) to Randy “Balls” Ballistic, which is good, since he is the basis for book #3. This story of Miller and Sunny was fantastic, but the whole of the story is so wonderful because the cast of characters that Helena Hunting creates are so amazing, it’s too easy to play the imaginary movie in your head as you read. And just in case you thought that Alex’s MC wasn’t going to make an appearance. . .he does, well it’s the Superhero MC that actually does, but both great nonetheless.
I swear, one day when I’m getting the business, I’m going to see if I can run a play by play in my head, just to see how sexy and realistic it would sound if it were on paper. When you read a lot and you happen to read a lot of sexy times in books, it sometimes goes the way of “What? Is what they’re doing even possible or am I not reading it right?” OR it could go “Who is having sex with this author? Clearly no one because the imagination is failing this scene” OR, most of the time my thoughts are “Shit, I need to get a pen and pad and get down to taking notes or maybe I can just have my husband read and see if this is doable”. No worries, Helena Hunting is either getting the business GOOOOOD or her imagination hasn’t failed her a bit. If it’s the latter, she is going to make someone very happy one day. Even though this is a comedy, the sex is still on fire. Even when it’s going wrong, it’s pretty tingly. You shall not be disappointed, yes that was a command, sometimes the BXTCH can be bossy.
I love Alex and Violet. I liked Buck (he was Buck in Pucked) in the first book, I just didn’t love him, so I was somewhat afraid that it would carry into this book. And here’s the truth, while I had every intention of reading this book, the catalyst for speeding up Pucked Up was actually Pucked Over, the third book of this series. I recently received the ARC for that book and I didn’t think it was fair to the author or readers if I didn’t read this one first and I am so glad I made that decision. I absolutely fell in love with Miller in this book, maybe even more than Alex. Because this book is solely from the POV of Miller, it allows you to embrace all of him and all of him is wonderfully written. This is really becoming one of my favorite sports series and I don’t even watch hockey, crazy, right? Maybe I should become a fan.