My dearest, lovely readers. Today’s the release day of Relay by Leyla Reyne.
This post contains my review, an excerpt & you have the chance to win an amazing prize at the end of the post. 🙂
I’m also part of the instagram tour, so check out my account or the hashtag #RelayReleaseTour. The review of the book will follow later this day.
Happy reading. 🙂
Relay by Layla Reyne
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
*~~*ARC kindly provided by the author to me in exchange for an honest review *~~*
Relay was a really superb sports romance with a topic I haven’t read before if I go through my book list. Not only was the pacing, the way how the sports – the competive swimming – displayed, right from the start the hate between Alex and Dane is visible. But this hate is based on hard feelings caused by broken hearts. It’s really captivating how Layla Reyne made it believable that they “hate” each other although they actually have still feelings for each other, love each other.
The tension was there, right from the start and fueled the whole book, from the first to the last page. I was hooked, I was cheering along with them and my heart broke several times. But in the end put together.
Dane is a really charming but lonely main character. He is the pretty poster boy and does what his parents tell him – a bigot couple full of twisted believes and in every pore homophobe. I can’t even say anything good about them, there isn’t a single part, not an ounce of kindness and love in them. And it’s actually remarkable. Layla Reyne made it possible to create two minor character, two antagonists who are this hateful, they colored your whole judgment & makes you furious, leads that you’re even more and frantically rooting for Dane and Alex’s happy end.
I really loved how the love was displayed, how Dane isn’t at some part hiding his emotions, at least we reader get the information, Alex is unaware and believes that Dane isn’t supporting him & have left him.
With being the “poster boy” and perfect tool used by his parents Dane is for the longest time departed from his team, something which made my heart clench & I wanted to hug him tight. It’s not that Alex’s feelings aren’t understandable too, his anger is actually reasonable but it’s hard to blame everything on Dane when it’s not him; when Dane is in a worse situation than Alex, even if it doesn’t looks like.
The book is based on all these deep feelings, the fear, the anger, the hurt both main character are carry with them. But it’s also vivid because of the sports aspect. Even if you aren’t into sports you aren’t confronted with too many sports terms and swimming scenes but enough to give the book the thrill, the action. Especially the dynamics in the team, the camaraderie is amazing, even if it’s saddening that Dane is first excluded of most of the events.
Layla Reyne knows how to capture the reader through the whole book, the events had an unexpected turn, the book was heavily based on the character development and less than going from hate to love and lust, even it’s a part of the book, of course. I appreciated this aspect because it had a somekind of “slow burn” touch, without being too slow, and the mixed feelings, the heavy emotions were delivered and on point. It’s not easy to hold the balance in a sports romance, between the emotional parts and the action, lively ones, the competitive and professional aspects with the terms and background about swimming.
I can’t wait to read the second book in this duology, Medley, and we already know – and got it confirmed at the end of the book – who the main character of this book are. I really hope we see in this book – next to a captivating plot – a few more scenes in the competitive swimming because I’m really fascinated by it.
If you love sports romance, enemies to lovers, hate turn into love but the heavy emotions based on hurt and betrayal, you’ll love Relay. It has everything a good book needs to satisfy you. ❤
5 out of 5 stars for this.
RELEASE DAY BLITZ/REVIEW
Series: Changing Lines # 1
Author: Layla Reyne
Genre: M/M Romance, Contemporary Sports Romance
Release Date: January, 2018
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Length: 63.000 words
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Captain is not a title Alejandro “Alex” Cantu takes lightly. Elected by his teammates to helm the US Men’s Swim Team, he proudly accepts the role, despite juggling endless training, team administrative work, and helping out on the family farm. And despite his ex-lover, Dane Ellis—swimming’s biggest star—also making the Olympic Team.
Dane has been a pawn in his celebrity parents’ empire from crib to pool, flashing his camera-ready smile on demand and staying deeply in the closet. Only once did he drop the act—the summer he fell in love with Alex. Ten years later, Dane longs to cut his parents’ strings, drop his too-bright smile, and beg Alex for another chance.
Alex, though, isn’t ready to forgive and forget, and Dane is a distraction he doesn’t need on his team, until an injury forces Alex to accept Dane as his medley relay anchor. Working together, their passion reignites. When Dane’s parents threaten reprisal and Alex is accused of doping, the two must risk everything to prove Alex’s innocence, to love one another, and to win back their spots on the team, together.
Praise about Relay
Layla Reyne is one of the most exciting new voices in queer romance, and her newest book does not disappoint. RELAY is everything you’d want in an enemies-to-lovers tale and a sports romance. While reading, I had the same heart racing excitement as I do when watching the Olympics and could not put it down.
— RITA nominated author Santino Hassell
The memories he’d brushed aside earlier came roaring back.
Music had coursed through Alex’s then-rangy body, his long legs, narrow hips, and firm ass moving perfectly in time with whatever tune they’d played or whatever song Dane had hummed in his ear. Smooth and seductive, dancing as natural as swimming for Alex.
Not for Dane. White boy head-bob, that was about all he could manage on his own. Years of cotillion classes were wasted on him. He’d been awkward, offbeat, and murderous on his partner’s toes. Until Alex moved behind him, pressed his front to Dane’s back, and splayed his fingers across his hip bones. Leading. Something Dane had been expected to do when dancing with girls. With Alex, though, Dane hadn’t had to worry about that. All he’d had to do was lean back and give his body over to the hard one behind him. Following. Something he’d been as eager to do horizontally.
His first taste of freedom.
Author bio – Leyla Reyne
Author Layla Reyne was raised in North Carolina and now calls San Francisco home. She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline-fueled suspense and heart pounding romance. When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs.
Author Tagline: Adrenaline-Fueled Romance
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There is a giveaway to win 2 paperback copies of Relay. Open internationally!
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Please note: the giveaway is not sponsored, administered or endorsed by Mikku-chan / A World full of Words.
Blogtour and release blitz hosted by/through A Novel Take PR.