Cracks in the ice by Ryan Taylor and Joshua Harwood

Cracks in the Ice is a sweet story, beautiful and heartfelt. Fantastic bi-awakening. 

From the blurb:

How can they trust love not to hurt them again?


I’ll never fall in love again.

I had my chance, and I was the happiest man you can imagine. One day, after a horrible accident, it all came to an end. The only thing left was playing hockey, but it wasn’t enough, and I became my own worst enemy.

When my old school offered me a lifeline, I took it. As a coach, I could at least be miserable in a different place.

But when I got to Mohegan University, there he was—bright and warm, like sunshine. I’d lived in the dark for so long my soul was frozen, but he thawed me out. I started feeling things again, wanting things. For the first time since the accident and dark times that followed, I wondered if there was a chance. I’d never thought about being with another man, but so what? Could I be lucky enough to find love twice?


I was done. No. More. Men.

I’d always made the worst possible dating choices, and one guy after another took advantage of me. Invariably, I thought I was falling in love. Once I told them, they’d show their true colors and run.

Worn out and unable to stand another heartbreak, I swore off love. I almost had my master’s degree, and playing the piano was a much safer route to happiness.

No sooner had I made up my mind than there he was—hot as a forest fire, yet very sad. When I found out why, I understood. Someday, he’d get married again, but there was no reason I shouldn’t be a friend.

Then he kissed me, and everything turned on a dime. I was getting pulled in again. I needed to protect myself, but the harder I tried, the more I believed in him. Was I making another horrible mistake? Would this time be different, or was I setting myself up for the biggest letdown of all?

Cracks in the Ice is a sports romance featuring hurt/comfort, sensitive men, unexpected connections, first times, an age gap, faculty/student romance, explosive chemistry, hard-earned happiness, and a very satisfying HEA.

Content warnings for partner deaths, traumatic accidents, and alcohol abuse. While these issues happened in the past, they may still be difficult for some.

Janet's Review:

Cracks in the Ice was my first time reading anything by these authors. This will not be my last time reading anything by them, fantastic! 

This was a sweet story. I loved Benny and Cole! Both men had trials and tribulations in their past and needed to get past that to heal. Benny is on the verge of losing everything when his friends and teammates intervene. He ends up coaching at his alma mater. He stays at his friend's house. 

Cole is a musician. He falls in love too easily and hasn’t always chosen the best men to fall in love with. He is also staying at the same house. They become friends slowly, that quickly morphs into more. The world building is great! The secondary characters are fantastic!! 

Overall, a fantastic read that kept me engaged! Well written with great pacing! Highly recommend.  

Rating: 5 Stars

Laora's Review:

I was looking forward to reading Cracks in the Ice and I can say, I was not disappointed.

Benny/ Caldy had lost his only love and did not handle it well. After some much needed tough love from of his Barracuda friends and his personal hard work and still doing rehab he is in a better place. And ready to take on the job as acting hockey coach at his alma matter.

Cole is a music master student who has not been the luckiest with the men he dated in the past.

Benny and Cole meet for the first time when they live together and have an instant liking and click.. Their friendship progresses and soon they are dating and exploring what love is to them. I liked how natural the relationship progressed and how healing this relationship is for both men.  

I also appreciate the authors did not give Benny a personal crisis  after finding he is attracted to a man and might even love Cole. He just accepted that there was a 'new' person who made his heart and world brighter and did not bother to label himself.

It seems the hardest struggle and most anxiety for them is finding a way to stay together after their time seems to come to a close at the end of the college year. They do however  find a way to get their hea.

I so enjoyed reading this low angst, forced proximity, mm romance. with a side of hockey gameplay. If you love reading about men daring to love (again) this is a book I recommend and a great start to the new Mohegan U Hockey series by one of my favorite writing duos.

I will be looking forward to other stories in this new series. I am wondering who could be next; Jamie & Kendall or even Eckie?

Rating: 5 Stars

Heather's Review:

I was wondering when we'd see the Barracudas again once their series wrapped, and fortunately I didn't  have to wait long... all the guys were back to support Benny Caldwell (Caldy) as he recuperated from his ankle injury and tried to maintain his sobriety after suffering a devastating loss...

What I didn't expect was Caldy making the move to coaching his college alma mater and to find an equally sweet and sexy musician to date!  This book has an instant connection, some sweet soul searching, a bi-awakening and so much more!  It's well paced, has just enough hockey and drops tidbits for future stories!  I am sure Jamie and Kendall will be fun, but I'm most looking forward to Eckie's journey to finding himself and finding redemption with the team...

Rating: 5 Stars

Alyssagp's Review:

Cracks In the Ice was an enjoyable book! The two main characters, Benny and Cole, were endearing. Their relationship felt genuine, and their progression and their journey were heartwarming. 

This novel was my first by co-authors Ryan Taylor and Joshua Harwood; they did a beautiful job writing this story. I will be reading from this author duo again! 

Rating: 4 Stars

Cracks in the Ice is currently available as an e-book and paperback and can be read as part of your Kindle Unlimited Subscription

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