Book Reviews

Time to Shine by Rachel Reid at Carina Press

Genre Bisexual / Contemporary / Athletes/Coaches / Romance
Reviewed by Barb on 26-September-2023

Book Blurb

For Landon Stackhouse, being called up from the Calgary farm team is exciting and terrifying, even if, as the backup goalie, he rarely leaves the bench. A quiet loner by nature, Landon knows he gives off strong “don’t talk to me” vibes. The only player who doesn’t seem to notice is Calgary’s superstar young winger, Casey Hicks.

Casey treats Landon like an old friend, even though they’ve only interacted briefly in the past. He’s endlessly charming and completely laid-back in a way that Landon absolutely can’t relate to. They couldn’t have less in common, but Landon needs a place to live that’s not a hotel room and Casey has just bought a massive house—and hates being alone.

As roommates, Casey refuses to be defeated by Landon’s one-word answers. As friends, Landon comes to notice a few things about Casey, like his wide, easy smile and sparkling green-blue eyes. Spending the holidays together only intensifies their bromance-turned-romance. But as the new year approaches, the countdown to the end of Landon’s time in Calgary is on.


Book Review

When I first requested a copy of this story, after I did my happy dance when accepted for a review copy, I worried that my expectations might be too high. After all, this author’s ‘Heated Rivalry’ and ‘The Long Game’ are two of my top five favorites of all time. Rachel Reid, whom I follow on social media, cautioned that the story would be nothing like that spicy hockey series. Nevertheless, I found underlying similarities: both feature hockey players and both gave me a happiness factor of ten out of ten points. I am in awe of Rachel Reid’s ability to create such rich characterizations, realistic hockey action, believable situations, and disarming and endearing moments with scenes that took me to the depths of despair and rocketed me to the top of the emotional roller coaster.


Landon and Casey’s story grabbed my attention and held on tight. Casey is one of the most outgoing and personable characters I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. Landon is more like me—an Introvert with a capital I. Sadly, he still carries guilt about the death of his sister years before and finds it hard to allow himself to be happy. He’s a sweetheart with a deep inner core of strength and a heart like a sponge that’s just waiting for Casey to come along and fill it with his overflowing personality and zest for life.


Their story is engaging and Casey’s brightness carries Landon through his darkest times. The romantic scenes between them are definitely worth waiting for as Landon is not only a virgin but he’s never really been sexually attracted to anyone before. And, although he’s inexperienced, he makes up for it in his willingness to learn from Casey and reciprocate.


I have so many favorite moments and quotes that there’s no point in even listing them because my most important message of all is: “Please treat yourself to reading this book.” It is definitely the best of 2023, and if you enjoy reading M/M romance, you will love Landon’s and Casey’s story!


A final note: in the acknowledgements section the author thanks fellow authors for “writing books that keep setting the bar higher.” In my opinion, Rachel Reid is among the best at moving that bar upward. Please never stop writing, Ms. Reid. 




DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. The first edition of this book was provided by the publisher via Netgalley for the purpose of a review.


Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 382 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 26-September-2023
Price $9.99 ebook, $18.99 paperback
Buy Link