The Fictional Hockey League

Critiquing hockey romance novels, of which there are many. Overthinking it is the point.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Offside: Post 16

In case you thought that now that the main couple has had sex (multiple times, with a one-eyed cat watching) readers would no longer received a running commentary on their turgidity, I’m very sorry to disappoint. Chapter twenty-one opens post-coitus, and post-breakfast, with Logan loading the dishwasher and, having caught sight of Billie wearing only his button-down shirt, gets “instantly hard. Again” (345). I’ll spare you the further adventures of Logan’s penis.

Shane interrupts the two of them as they have a make-out session in the kitchen (remember that Shane lives in the apartment above Logan’s garage. Why that requires him to wander into Logan’s kitchen, I do not know. But he sees the two of them, approves, and says he’ll tell the workers at Logan’s garage that Logan will be late.)

After Logan muses on the fact that he’s never had breakfast with any of the women he’s ever slept with (seriously??), Billie says that they have to keep their relationship secret because of the way that the whole town is already treating her. I’m surprised but pleased to report that Logan is understanding—he says he doesn’t care if people know, but if she wants it to remain clandestine, he’s fine with that.

Then there’s more sex. But it’s speshul sex ‘cause Billie says she’s on birth control and they’re both STD free, so it’s sex sans condom, which neither has eeeeeeeever done. (Well, Logan says he did once as a kid but then was given the “’don’t get anyone pregnant, don’t get a disease or your pecker will fall off[‘] speech” (352). (Yes, the text forgot to close its own quotation marks. If the author paid the person she thanked at the beginning for editing/proofreading, she didn’t get her money’s worth.)

So, let’s see. Billie is Logan’s first date at the restaurant in the city (other than his mother), first post-coital breakfast, and first unprotected sex. I understand wanting to share firsts with the person you think will be your Forever-and-Ever, but this is a strange list. The restaurant thing is seriously arbitrary. The breakfast thing just makes me think Logan is a jerk to the women he dates. And the unprotected sex thing is cliché.

Oh, and Logan’s never been late to work before (for any reason), so there’s another first. He arrives, still musing on how great sex was, particularly without a condom, then chats with Shane. Both of them commiserate over how the town is absolutely ridiculous with their hatred of Billie  (or any woman) playing hockey with the guys.

No sh*t. I kind of feel like this is a conversation that needed to happen about 325 pages ago, because one way to get over things that don’t quite make sense in a novel (or film or play) is to have characters comment on it. (Fabian, from Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night: “If this were play'd upon a stage now, I could condemn it as an improbable fiction.”) Oh well.

One conversation leads to another and Logan is bemoaning the fact that he has to tell Billie that he slept with, and took the virginity of, Betty.

How exactly did you tell the woman you were kinda crazy about that you had sex with her sister?

…Not only had he had sex with Billie’s sister—he had taken her virginity. Complicated didn’t come close to describing his current situation (361).

Again, I’m an only child (as are, I believe, my two main readers/commenters of this blog), so I don’t know that I’m the right person to comment on this particular bit of Manufactured Drama. But… really? I mean, if he’d had sex with Betty, say, last week, that’d be one thing. But it was years ago. If Logan really had had sex with Betty (instead of with Billie, as we the readers know), would it really have been that big of a deal? And if it were, wouldn’t he assume that Betty would have told Billie, since they’re triplets and all? I mean, sure, he should probably tell her as opposed to keeping it a festering secret, but does have to be a Hyooge Big Deal? I don’t get it.

Someone with siblings wanna chime in and help a Commissioner out?


  1. "How exactly did you tell the woman you were kinda crazy about that you had sex with her sister?"
    This sounds like the opening of an advertisement and the answer will be—"with diamonds from Family's Jewels" or "with flowers from Three Fates Florist."

    Well, I have no siblings so I can't enlighten you. And when I read romances, I'm always shouting at the characters to 'fess up immediately. However I recognize that would make for shorter books.

    1. Or the tagline of a lousy rom-com. :D

      And yeah, I do the same thing. "Tell her the truuuuuuth!" I just read a regency called _The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy_, by an author I generally like, but, as you might guess from the title, by about 1/2way through I was just like "TELLL HHHHHHEEERRRRR" -- it didn't help that I had figured out the secret long before it was revealed, I suppose.

      But yes, a lot less plot if secrets are immediately revealed... (But this one seems so arbitrary....)