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Cold Day in the Sun

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Holland Delviss wants to be known for her talent as a hockey player, not a hockey player who happens to be a girl. But when her school team is selected to be featured and televised as part of HockeyFest, her status as the only girl on the boys’ team makes her the lead story. Not everyone is thrilled with Holland’s new fame, but there’s one person who fiercely supports her, Holland Delviss wants to be known for her talent as a hockey player, not a hockey player who happens to be a girl. But when her school team is selected to be featured and televised as part of HockeyFest, her status as the only girl on the boys’ team makes her the lead story. Not everyone is thrilled with Holland’s new fame, but there’s one person who fiercely supports her, and it’s the last person she expects (and definitely the last person she should be falling for): her bossy team captain, Wes.  


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Holland Delviss wants to be known for her talent as a hockey player, not a hockey player who happens to be a girl. But when her school team is selected to be featured and televised as part of HockeyFest, her status as the only girl on the boys’ team makes her the lead story. Not everyone is thrilled with Holland’s new fame, but there’s one person who fiercely supports her, Holland Delviss wants to be known for her talent as a hockey player, not a hockey player who happens to be a girl. But when her school team is selected to be featured and televised as part of HockeyFest, her status as the only girl on the boys’ team makes her the lead story. Not everyone is thrilled with Holland’s new fame, but there’s one person who fiercely supports her, and it’s the last person she expects (and definitely the last person she should be falling for): her bossy team captain, Wes.  

30 review for Cold Day in the Sun

  1. 5 out of 5

    Olivia & Lori (The Candid Cover)

    Full Review on The Candid Cover Cold Day in the Sun by Sara Biren is a book that is cute but also contains an important message. It is a story about sports with a hint of music, which is an instant win for me, and the main character is so strong. This is an empowering read that I was sad to put down. This book tells the story of Holland, the only girl on the boys’ hockey team. She is forced to work twice as hard to show that she’s worthy of her place, and her life becomes even more difficult when Full Review on The Candid Cover Cold Day in the Sun by Sara Biren is a book that is cute but also contains an important message. It is a story about sports with a hint of music, which is an instant win for me, and the main character is so strong. This is an empowering read that I was sad to put down. This book tells the story of Holland, the only girl on the boys’ hockey team. She is forced to work twice as hard to show that she’s worthy of her place, and her life becomes even more difficult when she finds herself falling for the team captain. Cold Day in the Sun is so empowering for female athletes, but it is also absolutely adorable. I also found the music blog to be a fun addition. This is an entertaining novel that is perfect for sports fans, and fans of the contemporary genre. ❀ INSPIRING CHARACTER I loved Holland’s character, and she is so inspiring. Even though she deals with a lot of pressure, she is strong and unafraid to stand up for herself. She is so talented, and it is easy to her her genuine passion for hockey. Holland also has such an engaging voice which is visible in both her narration and her blog posts. I found it interesting how Holland has the option of the girls’ team, and when she is questioned about her reason for joining the boys, the answer is simply because she wants to. The fact that she shouldn’t need to justify her actions is influential and drives the book’s message home. ❀ MOTIVATIONAL Cold Day in the Sun is a book that is both sweet and motivational. I loved the blend of sports and music and the strong main character. I would definitely recommend this one to curl up with on a cold day.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Dahlia

    I don't know who told Sara Biren that hockey, female athlete heroines, the Foo Fighters, glam rock, and smoldering romance are all keys to my heart, but whoosh, I devoured this one. Happy birthday to me!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Susan's Reviews

    This YA book took a while to get into, but my patience was well rewarded. Holland Delviss is the sole female hockey player on her high school all male team. Holland has to endure the prejudice and disapproval of many of the townsfolk of Halcyon Lake. She also has her own inner battles: she worries that other people think that she is not good enough - although she is constantly being reassured by her teammates and coach that she is in fact better than many of the other players on her team. During This YA book took a while to get into, but my patience was well rewarded. Holland Delviss is the sole female hockey player on her high school all male team. Holland has to endure the prejudice and disapproval of many of the townsfolk of Halcyon Lake. She also has her own inner battles: she worries that other people think that she is not good enough - although she is constantly being reassured by her teammates and coach that she is in fact better than many of the other players on her team. During an important media interview she is accused of: 1. believing that she is too good to play on an all-female team - which implies that there is something "less" about an all female team. 2. taking the spot of another deserving male player 3. potentially causing conflict among, or becoming a distraction to, the other male players because she is an attractive female - (her response is to refuse to date any of her teammates) 4. being a liability because she will get hurt since boys are rougher than girls, etc. All of these pat excuses serve as a means to exclude women from mixed sports. Not all men, no matter how strong or well-built, are skilled at sports. Not all women are physically frail. Excuses of this sort have been used throughout history to perpetuate racial and ethnic discrimination. Even Holland was buying into some of the warped thinking by adapting her response to these criticisms: her whole life became one huge effort to prove her naysayers wrong: she was "giving over way too much power" to her opponents. One by one, her inner demons are addressed and exposed: even her rule of not dating a teammate is eventually broken. The Delviss family were priceless, and although I was not fond of how the team's co-captain, Wes, yelled at all of the players when he caught them slacking off or giving less than their best to the game, when he was off the ice he seemed pretty decent. (I have never been a fan of education by yelling.) In her acknowledgement at the end of the book, the author reveals that she used to manage her varsity hockey team, and this familiarity lends realism to this engaging story about a young girl who finds herself (and love) once she stops worrying about how others perceive her. Highly recommended.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Cortney LaScola - The Bookworm, Myrtle Beach

    Adorable (albeit predictable) story about a girl on an all-boys hockey team who falls for one of her teammates. Loved the girl power vibe of the whole story, really enjoyed all the characters, and even the hockey aspect too. Very cute and easy read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Samantha (WLABB)

    Rating: 4.5 Stars You know what I love? I love when I cannot stop smiling while reading a book, and that was EXACTLY what happened to me as I read Cold Day in the Sun. Holland had spent her whole life as one of the boys, and when it came time to try out for her high school's hockey team, she opted to stick with the boys' team, since they already had a well established dynamic in place. Needless to say, she was constantly dealing with naysayers and those, outside of the team, who believed she didn' Rating: 4.5 Stars You know what I love? I love when I cannot stop smiling while reading a book, and that was EXACTLY what happened to me as I read Cold Day in the Sun. Holland had spent her whole life as one of the boys, and when it came time to try out for her high school's hockey team, she opted to stick with the boys' team, since they already had a well established dynamic in place. Needless to say, she was constantly dealing with naysayers and those, outside of the team, who believed she didn't belong playing with the guys. She had to constantly prove herself, because she felt like they were all just waiting for her to fail. Suddenly, she seemed to be noticing, that her team captain, Wes, has been noticing her, and Holland was forced to mediate a battle between her head and her heart. I love sports romances, and this one featured so many amazing components, which sum totaled to an incredible reading experience for me. Holland was such an easy character to root for. She was driven and focused, and had to wear some armor being the lone woman on a men's team, but she was also sensitive to other people's needs and had a vulnerability, which she was hesitant to reveal, but was still authentic. I empathized with her feeling some pressure and the weight of all eyes always being on her, and it pained me that these people made her doubt herself, but she was so lucky to have such wonderful friends and family. They believed in her and supported her. They gave her that little lift, when she needed it, and it all really warmed my heart. Wes made me smile, A LOT. My initial impression of him was the same as Holland's - not great, but I started seeing these bits and pieces of him, which made my love for him grow exponentially. He was a good captain, who deftly walked that line between tough and encouraging. He was a fantastic brother, who doted on his little sister. He was a good friend, who listened when you needed him to, and he made an effort to see things from your point of view. It was really all the little things he did, which won my heart, and made me believe that he was perfect for Holland. And, OH, what a sweet and lovely romance these two had. I had so much fun spending time with them, and kept hoping Holland would give in to her feelings. Seriously, the tension between these two was palpable, and their interactions ranged from too adorable to swoony. The date at the a-frame, the popcorn, the sharing of hot sauce, the fence, those phone conversations, and even the blog interactions just made me ship them more. Yeah, I was totally onboard with these two. There were so many other fun and wonderful things in this story, such as: • Holland's brothers and her present and supportive family • The inclusion of actual hockey • Hair bands! This really brought me back • Holland's blog • The playlists • Food references, especially Holland's mom's food • An ending that put a perma-smile on my face I wish I had photographic evidence of myself reading this book, because I wore an expression of genuine bliss, and another testament to the happy-inducing power of this book, is the grin I am sporting as I write this review. Overall: Cold Day in the Sun delivered that feel-good vibe I expect from sports books, but I also got an adorable romance, a strong and determined heroine, a swoony hero, and a wonderful and supportive family. *ARC provided in exchange for an honest review. BLOG | INSTAGRAM |TWITTER | BLOGLOVIN | FRIEND ME ON GOODREADS

  6. 5 out of 5

    Aimee ♥ | Aimee, Always

    Well, the first 1/4 of the book was fantabulously adorable. The rest of it was... fine. I LOVED the empowerment, but the pacing and the heroine did not come through, y'all. Full review soon! more reviews on Aimee, Always

  7. 4 out of 5

    Marie

    Well this was such a sweet, adorable book with a badass main character, I had such a great time reading it, definitely my kind of contemporary <3 Read my full review of Cold Day In The Sun on the blog. Thank you to the publisher for the ARC of this book. This did not, in any way, influenced my thoughts and rating. My Blog - Drizzle & Hurricane Books - Twitter - Bloglovin'

  8. 5 out of 5

    Namera [The Literary Invertebrate]

    ARC received in exchange for an honest review – thank you! (3.5 stars) There’s really not much to say about this book: it was short and sweet, and although the ending was good it was slightly unsatisfying. If you liked Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally, you’ll love this too. I don’t want to talk much about the ending, though. Not just because of spoilers, but also because I recognise that not all books HAVE to be escapism and have that perfect, unshakeable HEA. Especially a YA novel! I’m the ARC received in exchange for an honest review – thank you! (3.5 stars) There’s really not much to say about this book: it was short and sweet, and although the ending was good it was slightly unsatisfying. If you liked Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally, you’ll love this too. I don’t want to talk much about the ending, though. Not just because of spoilers, but also because I recognise that not all books HAVE to be escapism and have that perfect, unshakeable HEA. Especially a YA novel! I’m the first person to loudly say that 99.999% of all high school couples break up, so it would be unfair and unrealistic of me to expect my teenaged book couples to be perfection. It just felt like there were a couple of issues left unexplored – by the end of the book, Wes and Holland have barely agreed to become a couple, let alone discussed their plans for university (and we already know they’re going to different universities). But I don’t want to give the impression that the romance in this book is unsatisfying. It isn’t, it’s really cute! Wes was awesome, and although Holland messed him around a little, he never gave up on them. The family dynamics were also awesome. Unlike Catching Jordan, Holland’s dad is 100% behind his daughter doing whatever she wants, which was very refreshing to see. Holland’s relationship with her mum and three brothers was also TOTAL GOALS. Now for the crux of the story: Holland being the only girl on her school’s boys’ team for ice hockey in Halcyon Days, Minnesota. I understand that school and university-level sports is a MASSIVE thing in America, which I personally find a little weird because the only thing in England that comes remotely close is the Oxbridge boat race. And that’s barely. But anyway, there’s a lot of media attention on Holland for her position – is she saying she’s too good for the girls’ team? Her two older brothers were captain – does she think she deserves to be captain too? There are a whole lot of people out there who think she’s taking a spot away from a more-deserving male player. Holland also has a lot of supporters. Sometimes a few too many: it felt like everyone and their dog was telling her to ‘hold her head up high’, even when they didn’t even know her. It started to feel a little didactic and made Holland look weaker than she really is. While the ending was slightly unfulfilling on the romantic front, its open-endedness in terms of Holland’s life (like, does she ever make captain?) definitely means the book will stick in my head for a while longer than it otherwise would have done.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ginger at GReadsBooks.com

    Reading a Sara Biren book is like hanging out with an old friend — you think you know what to expect with good laughs and a lot of heart. Yet, sometimes, that old friend can surprise you by filling you up with such unexpected emotions. Her storytelling has done it again — it snuck up on me & pulled so delicately, yet urgently, on my heart strings. This book may come across as just a sports YA, about a girl trying to play hockey among the boys. But it delivers something so much deeper, so muc Reading a Sara Biren book is like hanging out with an old friend — you think you know what to expect with good laughs and a lot of heart. Yet, sometimes, that old friend can surprise you by filling you up with such unexpected emotions. Her storytelling has done it again — it snuck up on me & pulled so delicately, yet urgently, on my heart strings. This book may come across as just a sports YA, about a girl trying to play hockey among the boys. But it delivers something so much deeper, so much richer, about the injustices of sexism & unfairness when it comes to gender bias among sports. I really felt myself standing up, right alongside the main character, urging her to fight for her rightful place. There’s power in this story & so, so much glory. There’s also a very sweet, & very swoony, love story that’s woven throughout. And let’s not forget the beautiful scenery of what winter brings to the beautiful lakes of Minnesota. I fell in love with Sara Biren’s debut & have found myself falling again, once more, with this novel, too. The Foo Fighters sprinkled throughout may have a little something to do with it, too. What can I say? This author knows how to write exactly to my heart.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Katy Upperman

    I adored Sara's debut, THE LAST THING YOU SAID, and I ~hoped~ her follow-up, COLD DAY IN THE SUN, would be equally fantastic. Wow, was it ever. I absolutely adored this YA hockey novel full of amazing music references, yummy food mentions, and steamy kisses. It puts its own spin on two of my favorite tropes (hate-to-love and secret romance) and its ending is incredibly satisfying, but open-ended enough to feel realistic. Holland is an amazing protagonist--a hockey badass with a passion for the F I adored Sara's debut, THE LAST THING YOU SAID, and I ~hoped~ her follow-up, COLD DAY IN THE SUN, would be equally fantastic. Wow, was it ever. I absolutely adored this YA hockey novel full of amazing music references, yummy food mentions, and steamy kisses. It puts its own spin on two of my favorite tropes (hate-to-love and secret romance) and its ending is incredibly satisfying, but open-ended enough to feel realistic. Holland is an amazing protagonist--a hockey badass with a passion for the Foo Fighters, blogging, and her family. Love interest and hockey team captain Wes is super sweet, but also he swears all the time and accepts nothing but the best from the players on his team, including Holland. COLD DAY IN THE SUN was nearly impossible to put down; I think fans of YA romance will LOVE this book. <333

  11. 5 out of 5

    Ashley Urquhart

    For reviews and more, please visit my blog: What's She Reading? TL;DR – Main character has a HUGE chip on her shoulder and that make the overall story less enjoyable. I always have a hard time when I feel like characters have too many “things”. I think authors do that to try to create an authentic and well-rounded character, but in reality I think she would just be over-scheduled and wouldn’t have time to be good at any of her things. That was the case for me with Holland. She plays varsity hockey For reviews and more, please visit my blog: What's She Reading? TL;DR – Main character has a HUGE chip on her shoulder and that make the overall story less enjoyable. I always have a hard time when I feel like characters have too many “things”. I think authors do that to try to create an authentic and well-rounded character, but in reality I think she would just be over-scheduled and wouldn’t have time to be good at any of her things. That was the case for me with Holland. She plays varsity hockey, she’s on the school newspaper, AND she’s super into music and has a blog. I felt like the author just needed to pick two of those three extra-curriculars and focus on those. I think the story still could have been the same, pretty much. Holland as a character was just okay for me. She was overly defensive about everything. Anytime someone said something remotely misogynistic, she would bite their heads off. For example, if someone were to say, “Good hustle, guys!” she might say, “What? Only guys can hustle? Just because you’re a boy means you’re better at hustling?” Literally. That is a reaction she would have. It was super off-putting. Obviously, I thought it was important to stand up for herself, but…let’s have a little common sense here. I just kept thinking about Jackie Robinson. As the first black player in the Major Leagues, it was important for him to keep his cool and not freak out at people every time they said something negative. I think this is (a small) part of why we remember him in such a positive light today. Holland? Not so much. Secondary characters were okay. I liked Holland’s brothers but her parents were really non-characters. It seemed like there should have been a point in time where one of her parents (probably her dad) sat her down and just talked to her about hockey and being a girl on the team, etc. I also had an issue with her best friends Cora and Morgan. I liked them as characters, but there was absolutely no backstory as to how they became friends. With Holland spending so much time playing hockey, it didn’t seem like a natural friendship unless they grew up together? But that’s never explained. As a love interest, Wes was decent. But I didn’t like that he would respect Holland’s wishes. Firstly, I thought her reasons for not wanting them to date/their relationship to be public were SUPER valid. But he just kept pushing and pushing. Secondly, even if her reasons weren’t valid, they’re still her wishes! If he really cares for her, he should respect that. Holland had no reason to apologize to him, in my opinion. My last thing is just a couple of things that didn’t site quite right with me. First, wouldn’t the obvious solution to Holland and Wes’ problem be to just…wait until the season is over to date? Are your hormones that strong that you can’t wait a couple of months? But they never bring up this possibility. It’s either right now or never. Second, Holland is obsessed with Old Donnie’s letter to the editor because he claims she’ll be a distraction. But she completely ignores the fact that he’s essentially saying he wouldn’t care if something happens to her because she’s pretty much asking to be sexually assaulted (with the whole girl in the boy’s locker room thing). Like, what? How is that not the issue for her? At the end of the day, I thought the premise for this book was pretty solid, but it needed both more and less. That’s not super helpful to say, but I thought it needed more developed relationships with secondary characters and just less…Holland. Overall Rating: 3 Language: Moderate Violence: Mild Smoking/Drinking: Mild Sexual Content: Moderate Note: I received a copy of this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer H.

    Thank you to Netgalley, ABRAMS Kids/Amulet Books for giving me the opportunity to read and review early! Give me a story about a girl on an all boy sports team who's feisty, strong willed, and determined to not only prove to herself, but to everyone that she deserves her place while hitting me with a delicious slow burn of hate to love and I am weak. Give me that same girl throwing out playlists every few chapters or so of some of my favorite music genres including '80's hair metal (thankyouvery Thank you to Netgalley, ABRAMS Kids/Amulet Books for giving me the opportunity to read and review early! Give me a story about a girl on an all boy sports team who's feisty, strong willed, and determined to not only prove to herself, but to everyone that she deserves her place while hitting me with a delicious slow burn of hate to love and I am weak. Give me that same girl throwing out playlists every few chapters or so of some of my favorite music genres including '80's hair metal (thankyouverymuch!) and not only name dropping my favorite movie of all time - The Cutting Edge (Bless!), but also discussing the movie's soundtrack and I am putty in your precious hands. Do with me what you like. I cease to exist. Holland Delviss - hockey player and avid Foo Fighters fan - is "living in a man's world" so to speak and using the negativity that comes along with it to fuel her fire. She uses their ridicule as a mantra to keep her focused and on track, to show all the naysayers that the conversation shouldn't be about how she's on a boy's hockey team, but about how she's a hockey player, period. She soon has her chance to do just that when she is chosen to be the lead story as part of a team feature for the annual HockeyFest. But as the interview nears, Holland's once frayed and tenuous relationship with team captain Wes (who she sees as her biggest enemy) starts to shift into something different and completely unexpected. I loved (loved, loved, loved) Cold Day in the Sun. It was everything that I need and want (and neeeeed!) in my book world - characters to connect to and root for, a thought out and well executed story, angst (gimme all day!), conflict (yes, please!), and swoon worthy chemistry that will melt your face off and make you wish it was part of long, drawn out series. Ugh, I'd hate it if I didn't love it so much! And if you couldn't tell by my first long winded paragraph the music aspect of this book is top notch for me. I mean, even the title of the book is a title track from the Foo Fighters! This is one of those where I will reread my arc until I have my hands on the finished copy...and then reread that until my little heart's content. I only hope that there is preorder swag! *bats eyelashes* I can not recommend this book enough! If this isn't necessarily your scene..yolo!..and try something new. Don't miss it!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kate (beautifulbookland)

    This was cute and fun and angsty and I loved it. It follows Holland, who is the only female on an all-male hockey team, and documents her struggles to be taken seriously by the fans. This book really makes you think about the injustices regarding female athletes. As a football watcher, this is something I feel very passionate about - how men’s football gets all the funding, while some women’s teams have to resort to packing bags at Asda (I’m not joking). I always love to see women involved in wh This was cute and fun and angsty and I loved it. It follows Holland, who is the only female on an all-male hockey team, and documents her struggles to be taken seriously by the fans. This book really makes you think about the injustices regarding female athletes. As a football watcher, this is something I feel very passionate about - how men’s football gets all the funding, while some women’s teams have to resort to packing bags at Asda (I’m not joking). I always love to see women involved in what is often referred to as a “man’s world”, and Holland was a fantastic lady to read about. Thought-provoking, swoony, and funny - I would highly recommend! *thank you to NetGalley for providing me a free copy*

  14. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    I received a copy of this title from the publisher. It does not impact my review. I really enjoyed this book. I’ve really been in the mood for cute contemporary stories lately and Cold Day in the Sun gave me that, plus a little more substance. Holland is the only girl on the boys varsity hockey team. She’s a great player, but there’s obviously a lot of pressure that comes with her position on the team. A lot of people don’t think she should be allowed to play with the boys and she spends every gam I received a copy of this title from the publisher. It does not impact my review. I really enjoyed this book. I’ve really been in the mood for cute contemporary stories lately and Cold Day in the Sun gave me that, plus a little more substance. Holland is the only girl on the boys varsity hockey team. She’s a great player, but there’s obviously a lot of pressure that comes with her position on the team. A lot of people don’t think she should be allowed to play with the boys and she spends every game trying to prove them wrong. What I thought was an interesting twist on the situation is that there is a girl’s hockey team she could play on. Holland really makes a point of saying her decision isn’t about the girls team not being good enough for her, but that she has always played with her brothers and their friends growing up and she wanted to keep playing with them. While at first I didn’t think it was a good narrative decision for there to be both a boys and girls team, giving Holland a choice really is important to the plot. Other than to satisfy my preconceived ideas, why should she have to justify her decision? Why can’t her explanation be “because I want to”? I liked that this situation challenged my thinking a bit. Feminism is obviously a strong theme of the story. While it did hit on a lot of important topics, there were a few things that didn’t work for me. Any time someone uses a common, but male-centered expression (like “that takes balls” or “man down”) Holland goes off on them about it. Yes, I understand the reasoning for wanting to correct this kind of rhetoric, but honestly it just comes across a little petty to me. And I don’t think yelling at people when they say it is really the way to get people to change the way they speak. While there were sexist remarks made about Holland by some people in their community, I loved that her teammates didn’t act like that. None of them seemed to be angry about having a girl on the team, even when she was better than some of them. While a few players were a little over-protective at times, they mostly just treated her like any other player and I liked that. I also really liked her relationship with her brothers and that none of them were threatened by her, either. And then there is Wes. I absolutely adored him. He is so sweet and I loved how much he supported Holland. Besides hockey, they also share a love for glam metal. I am not really familiar with the music and bands that are mentioned (a lot) so I feel like some of the impact that might have had was a little lost on me, but I did like how they texted each other about it. I absolutely shipped the two of them together and I was glad to see Holland finally wise up when it came to him. Overall, I really enjoyed Cold Day in the Sun. I liked the characters, the hockey, and the romance – especially Wes. While I didn’t always appreciate the way in which some points were made, I did like that it challenged the way I think about some things and thought it had a good overall message. This was definitely the cute read that I wanted it to be, plus more, and I’m looking forward to reading more from Biren. Overall Rating (out of 5): 4 Stars

  15. 5 out of 5

    Kristy Mauna

    Cold Day in the Sun is about a tough heroine who isn’t afraid to show the world what she’s made of! This story is for the readers who have felt like they must work extra hard to prove themselves to the world. Cold Day in the Sun is a book ensured to make readers smile. It’s short and sweet with the perfect blend of sports, family, and even music. Plus, Holland, is one of the best heroines ever! She’s fierce yet vulnerable. Being the only girl on the boy’s hockey team makes her the subject of many Cold Day in the Sun is about a tough heroine who isn’t afraid to show the world what she’s made of! This story is for the readers who have felt like they must work extra hard to prove themselves to the world. Cold Day in the Sun is a book ensured to make readers smile. It’s short and sweet with the perfect blend of sports, family, and even music. Plus, Holland, is one of the best heroines ever! She’s fierce yet vulnerable. Being the only girl on the boy’s hockey team makes her the subject of many conversations. Holland lives in a town that breathes hockey, so naturally there are many people who are opposed to her making varsity. What I enjoyed most about this book is how respectful Holland’s character is. She has her reasons behind why she decides to try out for the boy’s team and not the girls. She never discredits the girl’s team, though. The girl power in this book is fantastic and I applaud the way Sara Biren portrayed it! I think a lot of readers will be able to see themselves in her even if they don’t play sports. Despite the road blocks she faces, she never backs down, and continues fighting for what she believes is right. She works hard when everything should make her want to give up. The story moves along quickly and flowed nicely. All of the characters, especially Holland’s brothers, were a lot of fun! The other main character is Wes, her team co-captain. For readers who enjoy some angst in their romance then you’ll love Holland and Wes! Their love story was super cute and made this book much more enjoyable. Overall, I really enjoyed Cold Day in the Sun! I always love sports themed books and this one was perfect. Sara Biren’s writing reminded me a lot of Miranda Kenneally’s. Which is a total compliment because her Hundred Oaks series is one of my favorites! So, if you’re looking for a quick and sweet sports read then Cold Day in the Sun is for you! | review originally posted on Bookstacked |

  16. 5 out of 5

    Liza Wiemer

    I loved it! LOVED. IT! Set in Minnesota, this is a novel about Holland, a female high school hockey player, and the challenges she faces with team members and the community. Holland is an amazing character, exuding incredible strength of character. She has rules, and one of them is never date a teammate. But things changes with Wes. I love the romance. Another rule Holland has is practice harder than anyone else, and she does. You don't have to be into sports or be a hockey fan to appreciate this I loved it! LOVED. IT! Set in Minnesota, this is a novel about Holland, a female high school hockey player, and the challenges she faces with team members and the community. Holland is an amazing character, exuding incredible strength of character. She has rules, and one of them is never date a teammate. But things changes with Wes. I love the romance. Another rule Holland has is practice harder than anyone else, and she does. You don't have to be into sports or be a hockey fan to appreciate this novel. It's so much more. It's about going after your dream, feeling good about your hard work, owning your talents, and recognizing that in the end love is about being supportive of each other, kind, and respectful. Swoon!!!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kyra (Blog of a Bookaholic)

    I love contemporary books. I generally reserve them for the summer months, but as this book is set on the icy lakes of Minnesota, I thought this would be the perfect read for the last few weeks of winter. I was right. This book was filled with blizzards, coffee, snacks, fireplaces...and a sizzling romance to keep the cold at bay. With a fiery romance, a strong-willed protagonist, and a supportive love interest, this book was scrumptious - I flew through it. The characters are what makes or breaks I love contemporary books. I generally reserve them for the summer months, but as this book is set on the icy lakes of Minnesota, I thought this would be the perfect read for the last few weeks of winter. I was right. This book was filled with blizzards, coffee, snacks, fireplaces...and a sizzling romance to keep the cold at bay. With a fiery romance, a strong-willed protagonist, and a supportive love interest, this book was scrumptious - I flew through it. The characters are what makes or breaks a book for me, and I'm happy to declare that I really liked the characters! Holland is a fabulous main character. She's the only female athlete on a boys' hockey team, which means she has had to deal with a lot of criticism, sexism, and conflict in her athletic career. I really admired Holland for standing strong, for continuing to play despite all the people who are against her decision to play for the boys' team. She was stubborn, strong-willed, and determined. She was good and she knew it. She worked harder than any of the boys to keep her spot on the team. I really admired her diligence and her grit; she was quite an admirable character in that sense. Holland was also a well-rounded character. She was confident, out-going and headstrong...but she was vulnerable and sensitive at times too. A lot of books I've read in the past have featured female characters that are written as so strong, that they're devoid of human qualities like fear and insecurity. Holland was a complex character. I also liked the fact that although she pursued athletics, she also had ambitions to study journalism. Holland is not only an incredible athlete, but she also writes a music blog, writes for her school newspaper and loves glam rock music. I liked that she was interested in other things. She didn't feel like a stereotype. She had a lot of different elements to her character that was very realistic. Can I also just say she has brilliant taste in music? Breaking Benjamin was mentioned in this book. They're one of my favourite bands and they're so underrated. There was also Audioslave, Aerosmith, Linkin Park...so many amazing bands! I discovered 80s-90s rock when I was 16 and listened to SO many of these bands...so I could totally relate to Holland's love for this genre of music! I really liked Wes as well, although I didn't love him initially. As Wes was Holland’s coach, he gave her a tough love attitude, which I didn’t like at first. He was constantly pushing the team to be better, but at first I didn’t like the condescending, crass way he in which he tried to motivate them them. That being said, I soon realised that was just his coaching style. When him and Holland became something more, he was so good to Holland. He was caring, protective, supportive...and I loved how sweet he was to her. I also liked that he wasn't a caricature of a teenage male athlete. He loved music, reading and painting. I really liked that he was interested in other things as well, as that made him all the more realistic. There were several side characters too, such as Carter, Hunter and Jesse, Holland's three brothers. She also had two best friends, Cora and Morgan, who were lovely and supportive. I really liked Holland's brothers and I enjoyed the dynamics between the brothers and Holland. The other characters didn't feature as much as Holland and Wes, as Cold Day in the Sun was predominantly about their romance. This leads me onto the second point... Familial relationships and friendship! I really liked the relationship between Holland and her brothers. I have an older brother and it's the best. I really appreciate it when books have strong sibling dynamics. Holland is closest to her oldest brother, Hunter. I loved how he commented on her blog, encouraged her to never give up, and discussed music with her. I liked how Carter, Jesse, and Holland played on the same team and had a common interest that united them. Carter, Holland's older brother, was protective of Holland but not overly so. Jesse was her younger brother, and I would've liked more scenes with him in as I don't really feel like I know Jesse all that much. That being said, I really enjoyed reading about Holland's relationship with her brothers. I liked that Holland's mom featured in this book, as absent parents are a trope in YA that I am tired of. The mom would call Holland to make sure she was okay and chastise her for certain things. I really liked that this was shown! Way too often YA books have parents that literally just don't care, which isn't realistic for a large majority of people! Holland also had two female best friends, Cora and Morgan. I'm so glad Holland had female friends. In books I've read previously, the sporty girl who spends a lot of time with guys has no female friends, which also isn't that realistic. I liked that despite Holland being very athletic and on a boys' sports team, she still had female friends. However, I do think Cora and Morgan could've had more depth and their friendship did, in my opinion, require slightly more development. The romance is the core aspect of the story. This book is a romance book, and I loved it1. It was only while reading this book that I realised most of the books I've read recently haven't been solely focused on romance...I've missed that! I know a lot of people aren't keen on romance playing the central part in a YA novel, but I LOVE romance in books, so this was right up my alley! I really liked the romance. Wes and Holland went from hating each other to loving each other. Guys, this is one of my favourite tropes. I was there for it. Wes and Holland's romance was sizzling. Their banter was on fire. Their love of music, food and classic movies (hello, The Princess Bride) made my heart happy. The romance was fluffy, sweet yet sizzling, and filled with brilliant banter. I absolutely adored the romance. I LOVED THE PLOT. I was scared I wasn't going to love the story line, as I have zero interest in sports. That being said, I really enjoyed the hockey aspect. In fact, it fascinated me. I loved reading about Holland's diligence in her training and her passion for the sport. I loved reading about her dynamics with her team. When I was younger I was intrigued by the ballet world: the intense training, the long hours of practicing, the dynamics between members of the dance teams...this reminded me of my interest in the lives of athletes. I really admire people who are so dedicated to a sport. I loved the music, blogging and journalism aspect too and all it brought to the story. I loved Holland's blog posts about music (especially music that I was in LOVE with at one point of my life). I loved how music brought Holland and Wes together. I loved reading about Holland's desire to study journalism and her passion for writing. Lastly, I loved the romantic plot in this book. It was the central thing and I loved it. In fact, I couldn't put it down because of the romance. That's another thing I want to mention, this book was so fun and easy to read. I loved reading about the developing romance between Holland and Wes; I loved reading Holland's blog posts and her music references. I sped through this book. There was something about it that made me not want to put it down. I LOVED THE SNIPPETS OF TEXT MESSAGES! I loved the mention of social media! Social media plays such a large role in most young adults' lives these days, so I really appreciated the mention of Twitter and Instagram, especially the havoc they can cause if an image goes viral. I also absolutely adored the text message conversations between Wes and Holland...it was adorable. I also loved the atmosphere. You have to read this book in winter. There are blizzards and coffee and watching movies while it snows outside...I loved the atmosphere of this novel. It really added a whole other dimension to this winter love story. This book made me smile! There were a few moments I caught myself giggling, often as Wes and Holland's interactions. I love it when books can make me smile! I only have two qualms about this book. The first thing is the amount of swearing Cold Day in the Sun contained. The characters swore a lot. And it wasn't swearing when they were angry/upset...it was random swearing. I don't mind if a book contains some swearing, especially in emotional situations, as that's realistic for a lot of people. However, the amount of "f" words that were was excessive and it did decrease my overall enjoyment of the book. Secondly, I sometimes felt like the feminism was a little bit over the top. Holland would freak out about quite a few things that were said, and I just didn't think it was always necessary to make such a big deal out of some things. The feminism was a bit much at times, but I'm glad this book highlighted the gross sexism and harassment that occurs for female athletes. I'm also glad that Holland told her coach about the degrading things that were said to her, as it needed to be dealt with. I'm glad she recognised the importance of speaking out and that she was supported when she did speak out. Cold Day in the Sun was an atmospheric winter read that featured a sizzling romance, a strong-willed protagonist, and a fascinating plot featuring music, hockey, and journalism. Cold Day in the Sun is also a nostalgic ode to glam metal, a love letter to hockey, and a voice that broadcasts the sexism and harassment that plagues female athletes. If you're looking for a winter read that will leave you feeling content and warm, look no further than Cold Day in the Sun!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kate McMurry

    Fabulous, YA, sports romance with a hockey-player heroine Holland Delviss (hockey nickname, Dutch) is a tremendously talented, 16-year-old hockey player who lives in the fictional small town of Halcyon Lake, Minnesota. During her freshman year, she was the only girl on the boys’ junior varsity team, and she has remained the only girl on the boys’ varsity team since her sophomore year. When she reached puberty, rather than transferring to the girls’ hockey team as all the other girl players did, s Fabulous, YA, sports romance with a hockey-player heroine Holland Delviss (hockey nickname, Dutch) is a tremendously talented, 16-year-old hockey player who lives in the fictional small town of Halcyon Lake, Minnesota. During her freshman year, she was the only girl on the boys’ junior varsity team, and she has remained the only girl on the boys’ varsity team since her sophomore year. When she reached puberty, rather than transferring to the girls’ hockey team as all the other girl players did, she opted to stay on the boys’ team. She didn’t want to lose her close connection to her longtime male teammates, especially her beloved brothers. Holland’s entire family is hockey mad. She and her brothers all started playing hockey when they were only three, and they joined their first team at age five. Holland’s brother, Hunter, is an 18-year-old freshman who’s on the men’s hockey team at a nearby university. Her brother, Carter, is 17 and the co-captain of their high school’s varsity hockey team. Her younger brother, Jesse, is 14 and is destined to ascend to the varsity hockey team by his sophomore year, as his siblings all did before him. Holland’s mother is a highly successful food blogger with a special angle—how to feed growing, hungry hockey players. But the most significant contributor to the Delviss family hockey mania is Holland’s dad. He played on a state championship hockey team at their local high school in his teens, and he has continued to play informally as an adult. He is thrilled that all four of his kids love the game as much he does, and he has supported their hockey dreams to such an extreme degree that he has provided them with a state-of-the-art ice rink in the basement of the big farmhouse in the countryside where they live. In addition to her passion for hockey, inspired by her mother’s blogging success, Holland has created her own blog, which she treats like an online diary to record her thoughts about music. Her dream career is to be the founder and managing editor of a music magazine, and her plan to achieve that goal is to be accepted into the journalism program at Hartley University in Duluth, financed by a full-ride scholarship playing on their outstanding women’s hockey team. Wes Millard (hockey nickname, Hot Sauce) is a gifted hockey player who transferred to Halcyon Lake from a school with a state-championship team. He is famous in Minnesota hockey circles for scoring the game-winning overtime goal that took his team to the championship tourney when he was only a sophomore, and no one will be surprised if he is drafted onto an NHL team the instant he graduates from high school. Holland encountered Wes for the first time the week before school began her sophomore year and his junior year, right after he moved to her town, and just before she officially joined the varsity team. It was not a promising meeting. Wes condescendingly remarked to her, “Don’t think anyone is going to give you a free pass because you’re a girl. You have to earn it.” Such blatant provocation from an interloper on her team justifiably incensed Holland, and she fired right back at him, giving as good as she got. The following year, Wes set a school record for goals scored in one season, was appointed co-captain for this current school year with her brother Carter, and as far as Holland is concerned, has had it in for her from the first. He’s never had a good word to say to her on the ice, and has constantly criticized her game for well over a year. A major break for Holland’s team occurs when it is selected to participate in HockeyFest (an actual, real-world event). Minnesota is famously known as the State of Hockey, and HockeyFest is a highly anticipated, annual affair which attracts college scouts from around the country, and sometimes NHL scouts as well. Holland makes an impressive showing during an interview with a sports reporter, and hers and multiple other interviews from the hockey teams of numerous contestant towns are televised all over the state via a Twin Cities news station. Five winning cities are determined, reality-TV-show style, by votes tallied from sports fans who view the interviews. It is apparent to everyone in Halcyon Lake, when their town is voted by a large margin as one of the victorious cities in the competition, that this amazing feat is almost entirely due to their having “that girl player,” Holland, on their team. Though it’s a big honor, Holland is feeling a bit overwhelmed by the HockeyFest spotlight glaring down on her when, out of the blue, Wes Millard, of all people, begins acting like a concerned friend instead of her main adversary. It’s a pleasant change of pace, but Holland can’t help being confused, and more than a little distrustful, of his motives. Why has this guy, who has always been harshly judgmental of her, suddenly turned into Mr. Nice? I am a huge fan of YA sports romances in which the heroine is an elite athlete, and this is one of the better ones I’ve read so far. It is told entirely from Holland’s point of view (POV), which is not ideal for a romance novel, in my personal opinion, because we only get to know Wes through Holland’s perceptions and, due to her longstanding resentment of him, she is a bit of an “unreliable narrator.” However, first-person POV is definitely a commonly accepted convention in YA, and it does provide an element of romantic conflict to the story, since Holland can’t read Wes’s mind and always assumes the worst of him. Fortunately, this author is skilled enough that she enables readers to come to know Wes over the course of the story almost as well as we understand Holland, by the same means, directly demonstrating their skill and dedication as elite athletes in the book’s hockey-action scenes, and presenting onstage their affectionate interactions with their friends, families, and teammates. As a result, we are left in no doubt that both Holland and Wes are intelligent, talented, hard-working, honorable, and loyal and loving to their friends and family. They are, in fact, some of the most endearing romantic protagonists I’ve encountered, to date, in a YA novel. This book offers an excellent balance between the two main plots: First, Holland’s experiences as a skilled, female hockey player who is a vital member of her hockey team and, second, her budding romantic relationship with Wes, which is very well done. Though I cannot claim to be an informed fan of hockey, the hockey scenes in this book feel quite authentic. Most importantly, they are fun, fast-paced, opportunities to vicariously experience from Holland’s perspective what it’s like to be a brilliant, female hockey player. Though there is plenty of sensual chemistry between Holland and Wes, their relationship doesn’t venture into actual sex, only kissing and some light “make-out” sessions. There is one scene of underage drinking, a bit of salty language, and some sensitive scenes about sexual-harassment type of bullying that Holland receives from a cruel player on an opposing hockey team. All of that together makes this book right on the cusp of G-rated and PG-13. Regarding the bullying, I commend this author for making it obvious in her portrayal of bullying that it is a reprehensible act that is never acceptable—even in a hardscrabble, contact sport like hockey. In addition, the book sets an ideal example for how authority figures and peers should treat victims of bullying. Holland receives exemplary, nurturing care in dealing with her post-bullying trauma from her girlfriends, her parents, her coach, the boys on her team, and one of her teachers who used to play hockey at a level of skill similar to Holland in high school and college, who had experienced bullying herself. I rate this book as follows: Heroine: 5 stars Romantic Hero: 5 stars Subcharacters: 5 stars Romance Plot: 5 stars Hockey Plot: 5 stars Setting: 5 stars Writing: 5 stars Overall: 5 stars

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sionna

    *I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own* This book is ducking adorable ;) Okay, so this book is about Holland, a girl on a boys hockey team. I know, I know, there are so many books/movies out there about girls who prove themselves good enough to play on the guys' team, who prove girls are just as good, blah, blah, blah. Trust me, you haven't read Holland's story and it is worth it. This book is girl-power all the way. At times, it really seems he *I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own* This book is ducking adorable ;) Okay, so this book is about Holland, a girl on a boys hockey team. I know, I know, there are so many books/movies out there about girls who prove themselves good enough to play on the guys' team, who prove girls are just as good, blah, blah, blah. Trust me, you haven't read Holland's story and it is worth it. This book is girl-power all the way. At times, it really seems heavy-handed, but you know what? I'm so glad these things are being called out. There are also things that are called out that *I* do! There are scenes here that made me rethink common phrases, questions, and my own thoughts about Holland playing on this team. And all of the scenarios that come up aren't overdone or unrealistic. So, the only reason it FEELS like the book is heavy-handed is because this crap is finally being addressed. Holland is a role model and one I wish I could be. Holland is a fantastic hockey play, unafraid to stick up for herself and all women, and yet still has insecurities, fears, and is inexperienced. She makes mistakes. She hurts and hurts others. It sucks that she has to defend her right to play with who she wants from strangers and her own family. It SUCKS. But Holland is a force to be reckoned with and she is so amazing. I could go on and on about Holland's strength, her trials, and how great this author tackled sexism, but I'll move on. There is a romance here. It is adorably cute. Hot Sauce is a fantastic guy. What I appreciated is that he reads like a teenaged boy-- a mature one, sure, but he still felt real. He's understanding, willing to learn and adapt, and so kind. And as much as there is a romance, I kept feeling like there was something missing from Wes. This story isn't about him though, so it didn't feel weird to have him feel more like a side character than a main character. Wes and Holland/ Hot Sauce and Dutch, work so well as a couple. They are definitely attracted to one another, but it isn't insta-love. Holland grows into her feelings for Wes. They have common interests, hang out, and grow into a stronger couple. They are so CUTE! There are trials to their relationship of course and they are handled so well-- handled really realistically. The thing is, this book ends before it might feel like it should. Possibly because I forgot what this book is about. It isn't about the hockey, it isn't about the romance. It is about Holland overcoming some of her insecurities and her growth. Definitely a character-driven book. Realizing this, when the book did end, I totally understood. Did I want more?? OF COURSE! I wanted Holland to kick ass and I wanted to read about her team becoming champions, but I'm satisfied with the ending. I finished the book and hugged my iPad. I adored this story. This is a book I will probably reread some day. I recommend it if you are looking for a cute romantic story with lots of sexism being beaten back, or if you want to read about someone overcoming their insecurities and growing to their full potential.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lindsi (Do You Dog-ear?)

    "Let's be honest. At the moment, I've got bigger things to worry about than a straw stuck up a sea turtle's nose." I received an ARC from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product. Cold Day in the Sun takes place during the winter, but it really warmed my heart! It was impossible not to smile while reading this book, and I really loved Holland's story. She "Let's be honest. At the moment, I've got bigger things to worry about than a straw stuck up a sea turtle's nose." I received an ARC from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product. Cold Day in the Sun takes place during the winter, but it really warmed my heart! It was impossible not to smile while reading this book, and I really loved Holland's story. She was a fierce female character who wasn't afraid to speak her mind. When someone told her she had balls, she was quick to tell them that a person doesn't need balls to do something brave. I loved her personality, and that she was willing to fight for what she wanted. Yes! Yes! Yes! Holland had an awesome family, I enjoyed all of their interactions. Hunter wasn't around as much, but his comments on her blog, and his brief appearance, really spoke volumes about their relationship. Carter was a typical big brother, and didn't want anyone to mess with his sister, but he also knew she could fight her own battles. Jesse was hilarious. I'm pretty sure he's referred to as a "diva" at one point. Her mom and dad, even her grandparents, are around and supportive. It was amazing and lovely! Then there's Wes. Sweet, beautiful, infuriating Wes. He doesn't treat Holland any differently on the ice, and he pushes and challenges her like he would any of the other players. I was a little annoyed when Holland didn't see this (she thought he was picking on her for being a girl), so her reactions were a little extreme. She wanted to be treated like everyone else, but got upset when she was. Off the ice, Wes was attentive and intuitive. He's understanding and thoughtful, a wonderful big brother, and he wasn't afraid to tell people how he felt. I really loved his relationship with Holland and how it progressed over time. There was so much to love about this book, and I think it's the little things that I enjoyed the most. Wes encourages Holland to try eating spicy foods, and tells her it's just like training for a new sport. You have to practice, which she does, and those were some of my favorite moments. The way Wes reacts when Holland bites her lip, and the way he talks about her to other people -- always kind and proud of her accomplishments. Holland's blog and her obsession with music (that Wes happily shares), and their shared text messages that are more music videos than words. Also, Holland loves to eat, and I love that she loves food. All of the secondary characters were fun and meaningful, and I wouldn't mind another book with this setting! I want to know more about everyone. As I got to the last page, I read it and immediately wanted more. It was a perfect ending for this story, and I'm still smiling as I write this, but I definitely could have enjoyed a few more chapters! Thank you, Sara Biren. You've kept a smile on my face for days. It was ducking adorable. 😉 Originally posted at Do You Dog-ear? on March 12, 2019.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tiff at Mostly YA Lit

    Review originally posted at Mostly YA Lit: I’m a sucker for hockey romances, so when Manda Group offered up this YA love story about a girl who plays hockey on a boys’ high school team and falls in love with the captain…I was in. Holland Delviss has always played hockey on boys’ teams, with three brothers and a dad who are super into hockey. Now, as a junior, she’s finally on the varsity team, with teammates and a coach who respect her. But Minnesota’s annual HockeyFest is coming up and Holland’s Review originally posted at Mostly YA Lit: I’m a sucker for hockey romances, so when Manda Group offered up this YA love story about a girl who plays hockey on a boys’ high school team and falls in love with the captain…I was in. Holland Delviss has always played hockey on boys’ teams, with three brothers and a dad who are super into hockey. Now, as a junior, she’s finally on the varsity team, with teammates and a coach who respect her. But Minnesota’s annual HockeyFest is coming up and Holland’s little town of Halcyon Lake is one of five towns who could be part of the televised game, with recruiters watching. And since Holland’s status is the big draw of the team, she’s on the hook to help the team get votes. This pressure, added to the fact that Holland’s captain, Wes, is on her back, is a lot for Holland to bear. But she’s surprised when outside the rink, Wes starts to provide a lot more support than just a teammate. But Holland doesn’t date teammates. She doesn’t want to be seen as a gimmick, or taking advantage of her girl in a guy’s world status. But can she resist Wes’ pull? Cold Day in the Sun was a super fast, addictive read for me. Sara Biren’s writing is loose and natural, and I loved how much it fit the sort of tough girl attitude of Holland. The romance between Holland and Wes was also very natural, and sweet, although I was pretty frustrated with it, since it felt like Holland was holding back because of her own arbitrary rules. Yes, there would be fallout from dating the captain, but this was much more about Holland coming to terms with her own feelings of needing to prove herself. I almost wished the book was more swoony, but at the end of the day, this was definitely a story about Holland, and not just Holland and Wes. Still, there are definitely cute moments. I just wanted them to go further (maybe because I usually read new adult/sexy hockey romance books! I wanted more kissing!). A couple of things I really enjoyed: Holland has the goal of becoming a music editor at a magazine, and she writes a blog about her interest in grunge and glam metal. It was cute that we got to see a few posts about that, especially since her love of music is what gets her to see Wes differently. I also loved that no one treated Holland like she was a tomboy throughout the book. There are definitely moments where Holland calls people out for being sexist, but not once does anyone act like she’s not girly because she plays sports with guys. It was both a refreshing and interesting take on the situation, because in Holland’s town, there’s also a girls’ team and it’s very clearly a town where hockey dominates. So why wouldn’t Holland join the girls’ team, you ask? Partly because she’s always played with the boys, but the fact is, she’s also a stronger player than the girls and many of the guys. The book acknowledges that the boys’ team is probably more aggressive and faster, but it never belittles the girls team. THE FINAL WORD: Cold Day in the Sun is a unique character-driven, angsty hockey romance with a lot of heart. It deals well and sensitively with a female on a boys’ hockey team and sensitively addresses gender issues. I could have used more romance, but I enjoyed this one a lot.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kate McMurry

    Fabulous!!!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Tracy Banghart

    This was the perfect book to read on a 12 hour flight. Romantic, funny, and full of heart. I loved the way Holland takes on sexism in her town, and all the sparks between her and Hot Sauce. The characters felt so real! This story was just the sort of sweet, empowering read I was in the mood for. It’s hard to explain but sometimes with contemporary, I find that the angst is almost...too much for me? This has just the right amount in my opinion. Lol. But that is DEFINITELY a personal preference th This was the perfect book to read on a 12 hour flight. Romantic, funny, and full of heart. I loved the way Holland takes on sexism in her town, and all the sparks between her and Hot Sauce. The characters felt so real! This story was just the sort of sweet, empowering read I was in the mood for. It’s hard to explain but sometimes with contemporary, I find that the angst is almost...too much for me? This has just the right amount in my opinion. Lol. But that is DEFINITELY a personal preference thing. At any rate, I highly recommend this book, especially if you’re in the mood for a fun, sporty romance.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Deanna (A Novel Glimpse)

    Original review: A Novel Glimpse Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion. The Last Thing You Said is a story that revolves around high school hockey. Our main character, Holland, is the only girl on the varsity boys’ team. She works her butt off every day to prove that she’s worthy of competing with the boys because not everyone believes she deserves to be on the team. The pressure to perform becomes even greater when her hockey team is selected to be spotlighted in HockeyFest. Original review: A Novel Glimpse Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion. The Last Thing You Said is a story that revolves around high school hockey. Our main character, Holland, is the only girl on the varsity boys’ team. She works her butt off every day to prove that she’s worthy of competing with the boys because not everyone believes she deserves to be on the team. The pressure to perform becomes even greater when her hockey team is selected to be spotlighted in HockeyFest. One person who supports Holland is her team captain, Wes. He’s the last person Holland expects to support her. Wes is also the last person Holland thinks would ever be interested in dating her, but he is. Holland shouldn’t be interested in Wes — she has a no dating teammates policy — but she can’t help the attraction that is starting to build between them. I have been waiting for Sara Biren’s sophomore novel to be released ever since I finished reading her début novel, The Last Thing You Said. Her writing was so emotional and touched me in ways I wanted to experience again. I found Cold Day in the Sun to be just as emotional and amazing as The Last Thing You Said. I loved the girl on a boys’ team theme. How Holland had to deal with her insecurities of being “the girl” was and all the issues that brought up were relevant to some of the situations going on in society today. The way her relationship with Wes wove into everything she was dealing with was a perfect. It wasn’t just her reactions to everything that made a big impact, but what others did and said about her spot on the team. There was a lot to think about it all — it made me wonder how I would react if my daughter was in the same situation or how I would feel if I was in Holland’s situation. I really loved how everything played out. Oh, wait! I can’t leave out the music! If you read the blurb, you probably noticed the mention of glam rock. Let me just tell you that if you’re a fan of glam bands like Poison, you’re going to love this book. So many amazing songs are worked into the story in very fun ways. I loved how music was just as important to Holland and Wes’ relationship as hockey was. Cold Day in the Sun was such a great book. It was one of those books I think everyone would benefit from reading. Sara Biren tackled a tough topic but mixed it with the sweetest romance to make it an emotional and fun read. I highly recommend Cold Day in the Sun. I think fans of Katie McGarry, Julie Cross, Ginger Scott, Sarah Dessen, or Morgan Matson would love this book.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Carol

    For anyone like me who was obsessed with The Cutting Edge and wanted a sequel to be about hockey. I don't have too much to say except this book is full of feminism, the Midwest, small-town life, and a romance that will hook you and not let you go. Just read this and thank me later. ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤ I received an advance copy from the publisher for review consideration. For anyone like me who was obsessed with The Cutting Edge and wanted a sequel to be about hockey. I don't have too much to say except this book is full of feminism, the Midwest, small-town life, and a romance that will hook you and not let you go. Just read this and thank me later. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ I received an advance copy from the publisher for review consideration.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Julie Daniels

    This book! OMGosh it's so "ducking adorable!" I don't read YA Contemporary Romance as often as I'd like to and I've been in the mood for one for a while. Cold Day in the Sun really hit the spot for me. I loved Holland "Dutch" Delviss. She was so spunky and determined. I just can't think of anything I didn't like about this book. I loved the way the author rounded out Holland's character with her love of glam metal, journalism, and her blog entries. All of the characters were so very well fleshed This book! OMGosh it's so "ducking adorable!" I don't read YA Contemporary Romance as often as I'd like to and I've been in the mood for one for a while. Cold Day in the Sun really hit the spot for me. I loved Holland "Dutch" Delviss. She was so spunky and determined. I just can't think of anything I didn't like about this book. I loved the way the author rounded out Holland's character with her love of glam metal, journalism, and her blog entries. All of the characters were so very well fleshed-out. I fell in love with Wes "Hot Sauce" Millard right along with Holland. Everything progressed at just the right pace. I couldn't put this one down. In fact this is the quickest I've read a book in quite a while. I loved that it tells the story of a girl playing on a boy's hockey team and proving she deserves her place there to not only doubters but to herself. This was so much more than a Romance. I highly recommend picking this one up. Especially during Women's History Month! *Thanks to Abram's/Amulet for the ARC for review*

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    * Thank you Manda Group for the Advanced Copy in exchange for an honest review * Holland is high school junior girl who loves hockey, due to her big happy hockey family. Growing up always playing with the guys, she now plays on the boys varsity hockey team at school. She is no stranger to criticism and judgement from people in town and at school. With a large hockey tournament and scouting opportunity coming up, she is surprised that one of the people most supportive of her is teammate and bossy * Thank you Manda Group for the Advanced Copy in exchange for an honest review * Holland is high school junior girl who loves hockey, due to her big happy hockey family. Growing up always playing with the guys, she now plays on the boys varsity hockey team at school. She is no stranger to criticism and judgement from people in town and at school. With a large hockey tournament and scouting opportunity coming up, she is surprised that one of the people most supportive of her is teammate and bossy co-captain, Wes. As sparks fly on and off the ice, Holland becomes closer to breaking one of her main rules, Don't Date Teammates. Ever. I loved this adorable high school romance. The characters were fun and realistic, making the story easy to read. I liked Holland's character very much, she was determined to prove herself, despite many challenges. She went against stereotypes and broke through personal barriers. The slow burning romance between Holland and Wes was great. The romantic dates, the blog posts, and the shared love for metal music perfect for a contemporary novel. I really liked Wes as a character - and his family members were very sweet too. He really understood Holland, and gave her the space needed to figure out what, and who, she wanted. This is the perfect cozy read for the winter months.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jaime

    We need more YA hockey books. The romance between Holland and Wes in Cold Day in the Sun is insanely adorable. I love when relationships start off as a enemies to friends to lovers, and this one was so good. I also loved that this book focuses on Holland and her relationships with her brothers and family. In general, this book is very pro-family support, which is so refreshing to read in a YA book. It also has just enough of a feminist vibe to make me root for Holland’s success, but it wasn’t pu We need more YA hockey books. The romance between Holland and Wes in Cold Day in the Sun is insanely adorable. I love when relationships start off as a enemies to friends to lovers, and this one was so good. I also loved that this book focuses on Holland and her relationships with her brothers and family. In general, this book is very pro-family support, which is so refreshing to read in a YA book. It also has just enough of a feminist vibe to make me root for Holland’s success, but it wasn’t pushy or agenda-seeking. Holland just wants to play hockey, simple as that. If you like cute romances and are interested in sports books or girls besting boys in competitions, Cold Day in the Sun is an adorable YA contemporary that delivers all of that and more. Full review here: https://booksandwafflesblog.wordpress...

  29. 5 out of 5

    Trisha

    I have a thing for ice hockey books. Thanks Netgalley for letting me read this super cute romance YA novel. My (not so best) review is now up at my blog Trish Talks Texts.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Madison

    Cold Day in the Sun is a fun YA, sport-centred novel with a tender heart and a very important message about equality and the strength and determination it takes to stand up for what you want (and there might be some very swoony romance thrown in as well). I absolutely love ice hockey novels. I’ve never played, never even watched a full game and yet there is something about the cold, crisp setting, the devotion of the fans, and the commitment and hard work of the players that makes this game so a Cold Day in the Sun is a fun YA, sport-centred novel with a tender heart and a very important message about equality and the strength and determination it takes to stand up for what you want (and there might be some very swoony romance thrown in as well). I absolutely love ice hockey novels. I’ve never played, never even watched a full game and yet there is something about the cold, crisp setting, the devotion of the fans, and the commitment and hard work of the players that makes this game so alluring in YA fiction. Throw in a story about a girl playing on a guy’s sport team and this novel was certain to be an absolute winner. Holland Delviss is a talented ice hockey player. Her three brothers play, her father played - it’s in her blood. While Holland wishes it was her talent that people knew her for, she is more famous for being the sole girl on the guy’s team. And when their team is nominated to compete for a spot on a televised hockey feature, Holland is thrust into the spotlight. As she balances the extra pressure, things are further complicated when she starts to fall for her bossy team captain, Wes ‘Hot Sauce’ Millard. But as Holland is tempted to break her “I don’t date players” rule, she knows stepping over that line might bring more trouble than its worth. If you enjoy contemporary YA fiction about sports or romance (or both), or if you are a fan of Miranda Keneally’s Hundred Oaks series or Julie Cross’s Juniper Falls series, then you will love Cold Day in the Sun. It has a great mix of romance and plot about coming of age and finding the self-determination to really stand and fight for what you want. Holland is a great character, easy to like with her quick wit and reluctance to step into the limelight. I was on edge throughout the entire book, picking up on Holland’s nerves, sure that at any moment things will explode in her face as she pushes the boundaries on what she ‘should’ be ‘allowed’ to do and who she wants to be. As with any good sport-focused novel, the team and dedication to the game bring a great sense of camaraderie, seen especially between Holland and her brother. Holland’s love of music, her blog posts and how this connects her to Wes, all bring another layer of interest to the story. Cold Day in the Sun is a fun, romantic story of falling in love, playing to your strengths, and being proud of who you are. The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own. Find more reviews, reading age guides, content advisory, and recommendations on my blog Madison's Library

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