Book Review

Book Review: In the Penalty Box by Lynn Rush and Kelly Anne Blount

Rating: ☆☆☆
Audience: YA Contemporary romance
Length: 364 pages
Author: Lynn Rush & Kelly Anne Blount
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Release Date: January 5th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads


The Cutting Edge meets Friday Night Lights in a sizzling new hockey romance from bestselling authors Kelly Anne Blount and Lynn Rush.

Figure skating was supposed to be my whole world. But one unlucky injury and now I’m down…but I’m definitely not out. I just need to rehab—a boatload of rehab—and who’d have thought I could do it on the boys’ hockey team?

Of course, the infuriatingly hot captain of the team seems to think I’m nothing but sequins and twirls. What’s a girl to do but put him in his place? Game on.

Hockey is my whole world. I’ve worked my tail off getting my team in a position to win the championships—hopefully in front of major college scouts, too—so what’s a guy to do when a figure skater ends up as our new goalie?

Of course, the distractingly sexy skater thinks I’m nothing but a testosterone-laced competitive streak. And surely she’s only biding her time to heal, then she’s gone. Game over.


That’s about the only major thought that kept going through my head. This was a book that couldn’t decide what age group it actually wanted to be apart of. The dialogue, conversations, and inner monologues swayed from young YA and towards NA (new adult). It was weird. Really weird.

What I did like was the hockey story. I love a good sports novel and I LOVE that Willow got be the goalie for the boy’s team. That was awesome and really neat to see. I liked reading about the games and wondering who was going to win.

I also did enjoy Willow’s character progression. Ridiculous thoughts about Brodie aside, she made some great strides in figuring out what was best for her. I think she made the best decisions with the information she could and picked what she truly felt was going to make her happy in the long run.

The wild drama all over the place took me out of the story. I don’t mind a bit of drama, but sometimes it hits a line. This one rolled way past that point. Everything felt amped to try and create an emotional side, and I didn’t feel much of that. I wish I could have felt drawn to some of the inner story more, but it’s fine. This was a quick YA romance that had some good, some bad.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult sports romance
  • Language: some
  • Romance: kisses/make-outs
  • Violence: physical altercations
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: difficult sports injuries, sexism, misogyny, loss of a parent through car wreck, parent abandonment, parent incarceration, alcoholism

Instagram || Goodreads

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