Rules of Engagement (Rules of the Game: Evanston River Otters book 3) by Brigham Vaughn

It's finally time for Lindy and Kelly's story in Rules of Engagement, and it's a great one.

From the blurb:

Rule #1: Don't fall in love with your best friend's brother

After Anders Lindholm lost his wife and baby daughter in a car accident, he knew he’d never find love like that again.

Hockey, routines, and his team are all that have kept him going since.

But as he approaches forty, an injury makes him consider what life after retirement will be like.

And when his teammate, who just so happens to be his best friend’s brother, offers him a helping hand—in more ways than one—it reawakens something in Anders he can’t deny.

Rule #2: Don’t let anyone know the real you

Kelly O’Shea has been in love with Anders since he was fifteen. He’s been hiding the fact that he’s gay for just as long.

He loves his family, but their over-protective meddling is what made him move halfway across the country and hide who he was.

Although Kelly and Anders both agreed it would stay casual, Kelly begins to hope that maybe they’ll eventually be more than just friends with benefits.

And the more time they spend together, the faster the ice around Anders’ heart melts.

But with a playoff spot to clinch, fractures within the team, and overprotective brothers to worry about, Anders’ fear of letting go of the past isn’t the only challenge they’ll have to overcome.


Off-page and non-graphic mentions of death of secondary characters including a child. Grief. Brief and non-graphic mention of suicidal ideation. Talk of homophobia and homophobic slurs.

Non-graphic mentions of sexual harassment and sexual assault.

Sheena's Review:

THIS is the story I've been waiting for since the first time I met Lindy. He's always been such an intriguing character, I've been dying for him to find a little bit of happiness because if there's any one of these guys that deserves to find some, it's Anders Lindholm. I was perhaps a little concerned that the story wouldn't live up to my expectations but it did, and even exceeded them because I adored this story.  

I've said before I know nothing about hockey, and even after reading this entire series to date, that still holds true. I feel like I've spent a lot of time with these guys by now though and got to know them a little. This story made me cry, unashamedly so (even though I was sitting in an airport at the time and had to wipe those tears away).  I cried for Lindy because the whole thing was just so beautifully written; I was right there with him and Kelly.  

Urgh, I'm trying not to gush too hard, but failing, I see. I loved the development of Kelly and Lindy's story. These two are just so utterly perfect together. I also really liked the underlying story of trying to combat the attitudes in the league, and not gonna lie, I have been waiting for Jack Malone to get his comeuppance too and I hope, in the final book, it comes to him.  

I can't recommend this book, and the series, highly enough.  The whole thing has been a joy to read and I'm sad the next book is the last, but I have faith it will all be wrapped up tightly.

Rating: 5 Stars

Heather's Review:

As soon as you read about Anders Lindholm in the previous stories, you know he's going to get a special man and that special man is Kelly O'Shea and I am totally here for it!   Rules of Engagement is a much deeper story than some of the previous Rules books and so emotional in that hurts so good way.  My heart broke over and over again for Lindy, but the book was still uplifting, sweet and steamy!  

While you could jump into Rules of Engagement as a standalone, in my opinion, this really needs to be read in series order and, with just one more Rules book planned at this point, you'll want to soak up ever bit of Evanston River Otters goodness...

Rating: 5 Stars

Janet's Review:

Rules of Engagement is the fourth book in the Rules of the Game series. This revolves around Anders and Kelly. Kelly has had a serious crush, verging into love on his brother’s best friend since he was a teenager. Anders was married but his wife and daughter die in an accident. Kelly is there to help Anders through it all. 

Their journey is an emotional one and so heartfelt. A lot of previous characters make an appearance. 

Overall, this was fantastic!! Well written with nice pacing that hooked me.

Rating: 5 Stars

Rules of Engagement is available to buy as an ebook, paperback, and to read with Kindle Unlimited subscription.