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Zack by Sawyer Bennett
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So I have been following along with the Cold Fury series by Sawyer Bennett and today I got to get my hands on Zack! And boy am I super grateful.
So let's start the story shall we. Zack is grieving for his recently deceased girlfriend and mother of his child Gina. He has many unanswered questions about their relationship and the survivors’ guilt is eating him alive. But he is also angry that his sister Delaney is forcing him into hiring a nanny. Without giving much thought to it, he hires the women that his sister likes, but what she wasn't expecting was this tiny tomboyish nerd, who was blunt and made him angry that she was in Gina's space.
Kate is a young woman that has had a rough life. After her mother died giving birth to her, her father and brothers addiction issues and raising her sisters children, while her sister fell in and out of love in a heartbeat. Kate is determined never to put herself back into that situation. So while working her way through school while trying to stay debt free, Kate takes a position as a nanny, and while Ben loves her, his father Zack is struggling with her presence.
But soon their relationship changes to a sexual one, that is until Zack completely messes it up and hurt Kate is such a devastating way. But will Zack be able to let go of his guilt and open his heart or will Kate do like she threatened and leave.
This is such an amazing book and that is not only because the heroine is a nanny, even though that helps. This story was beautifully written and well researched. I was not left with any questions or wishes that the story should have ended differently. Every part of this book is gripping and I finished it in one night (well 2am). I honestly cannot wait for the next book in the series.
I give Zack 10 out of 10! You all honestly need to read this amazing book!!
( )
  Cara_Ross | Aug 16, 2016 |
SO Good!! This may be my favorite book of the year so far, definitely top five! Sawyer Bennett did a magical job with the writing of this story. While the story could have been sad, what you feel with these characters is hope and life continuing after a devastating loss. Kate is a great character with her wacky sense of humor and brutally honest way of speaking to people. She was perfect for Zack while he worked through his grief and guilt. And the relationship between Kate and Ben is beautiful. Everyone needs to make sure this one is on their MUST read list. I highly recommend it. ( )
  Bette_Hansen | Nov 3, 2015 |
Zack by Sawyer Bennett
Book #3: Cold Fury Hockey Series
Source: Purchase
My Rating: 4½/5 stars
My Review:

If you have been following the Cold Fury Hockey series, you knew going into this read it was going to start out hard and so very, very sad. Sad, angry and, hard is exactly where this book starts . . . .

Zack Grantham never married his long-time girlfriend Gina and since her death in a car accident, Zack has spent a lot of time considering the why of that issue. He loved Gina, he certainly loves their son, Ben but there was always something that kept Zack from taking that last step, the final commitment and now that Gina is gone, the guilt is damn-near unbearable. The months since Gina’s death have been a hazy sort of nightmare with nothing but rehab for his injuries and time with his son. It is only Ben and the promise of the upcoming Cold Fury season that has kept Zack going. But, with the start of the season and no Gina, Zack is going to need help caring for Ben.

Kate Francis is last damn thing Zack needs in his life. With her newly earned Psych degree, no money, no home and, a can-do attitude, Zack and Ben Grantham are exactly what Kate needs in her life. Zack’s life is a mess and some young chippy running around his house and trying to take Gina’s place just isn’t going to work. Except, Kate isn’t some young chippy; oh, she’s young but she is also very blunt, very enthusiastic and, very clear that she has no intention of trying to take anyone’s place. Faced with the need to have a nanny, Kate’s attitude and, Ben’s response to Kate, Zack lets her in the front door but he certainly isn’t happy about it.

For weeks, Kate and Zack dance around one another with Zack flinging cold comments and stares at Kate and Kate letting them slide right off with a smile and a cheerful comment. In her most private moments, Kate admits to herself that Zack is beautiful man but his attitude, though completely understandable is not the attitude of a man interested in a girl. That is, until the night Zack finds Kate in her barely-there pajamas in his kitchen looking for ice cream. Normally, Kate’s stunning body is covered by baggy clothes and her exquisite face is hidden behind huge glasses but that night, she is totally uncovered and Zack finally feels something. What he feels for Kate only increases his anger and his guilt but as the days go by, Zack is helpless in the face of Kate, her hidden beauty and, his feelings. Knowing Kate wants him just as much as he wants her, the two strike a deal, sex only and no strings attached.

Sex with Zack is unlike anything Kate has ever experienced and for a time, keeping her feelings out of the equation is totally doable. Zack runs hot and cold and has a very nasty habit of sending some seriously mixed signals. Clinging to the happy and sweet moments, Kate hangs in there with Zack as he struggles to begin building a new life for himself and his son. Though his actions are often tender and sweet, his words are cutting and one day, Kate finally has enough and makes the heartbreaking decision to walk away.

The Bottom Line: This was a one sitting, screw you morning, stay up all night to finish it read for me. Zack’s story is so sad and his road to happiness with Kate is not any easy one but it is a damn good read! I was very, very, very, very glad to see that Kate is not the typical girl who tells a man she can do no-strings-attached sex all the while hiding an intense love that she is sure can bring the man around. Kate does develop feelings for Zack but she is never under the illusion that her feelings can fix Zack. Though she wants to be with Zack and a part of his life, Kate has pride and self-respect; she is in no way a helpless girl or love drunk fool. Kate isn’t in to fooling herself and so, she waits for Zack to pull his head out of his ass. Zack is hard to love at times but you understand that under all the hurt, the anger and, the guilt he is a good man trying to make his way following the death of a loved one. He doesn’t always make the right decisions but he is a good man and when he finally realizes what he has, the pieces all fall into place. As with each of the previous reads, Zack had me from page one and by the end, I was one-clicking the next read, Ryker. ( )
  arthistorychick | Aug 13, 2015 |
This series is fantastic. If you're a hockey fan there is a little action from the games and even if you aren't a fan there is plenty of action between the sheets. This is the third book in the series, but it can definitely be read as a stand-alone. I liked the journey that Zack traveled, from deep grief and guilt to letting it go for a future with Kate. And I must say that Ben was adorable. Looking forward to the next book.

Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC. ( )
  amdrane2 | Jun 21, 2015 |
5 “The Missing Link” Stars! Lovers of inspirational romances will be thrilled to discover Zack by Sawyer Bennett. With an average rating of 4.12 and over 82,ooo+ ratings on Goodreads, its safe to say that Sawyer Bennett is one of the more popular romance writers of today. Somehow, I hadn’t yet had the good fortune of experiencing Ms. Bennett’s writing. Being a lover of sports romances, however, I knew my time had come when I read the blurb for Zack. Well, Zack was everything I thought it would be plus more! I simply could not put this story down. From the quirky, “nerdy” heroine, who is working hard to finish her studies to overcome her extreme poverty, to the devasted hero, who had to learn how to live again, following the accidental death of the mother of his child, this book tackles some difficult subjects all the while delivering in the hot, steam-filled passion department.

Zack Grantham is learning how to be a single dad, even as he is trying to cope with immeasurable guilt over the loss of his former girlfriend, and the mother of his son, who died in a car accident when he was at the wheel. Being there for his son, is about the only thing he has been able to accomplish in the months since the accident. Other than that, he feels empty and incapable of feeling no matter what extremes he goes to to try to elicit a response. Now nearly fully healed from a wrist injury that has kept him off the ice, he is ready to return to his position on the Carolina Cold Fury hockey team, but first he must find a nanny for his son. Of course no one could possibly ever fill his son’s mom’s big shoes, calling for even more grief on his part.

Kate Francis learned early to hide her body and looks from the unwelcome advances of men. Hidden beneath the glasses and second hand frumpy, oversized clothes is a beautiful woman who has yet to explore her sexuality. Kate knows accepting a position with the extremely handsome, but clearly still grieving Zack, will be difficult at best, but Kate instantly connects with his son and is determined to find a way to make it all work. If that means she can also manage to make Zack smile, from time to time, with her quirky sense of humor–a talent she has perfected over the years–then all the better, as poor Zack could certainly use some sunshine in his life.

When their easy going connection opens the way to physical attraction, Zack and Kate must ponder whether potentially destroying a good working relationship is worth the risk, especially given that Zack makes it clear from the get-go that following his loss, he will never be able to give anything more than just his body. Can Kate show Zack the way to emotional healing before there intimacy, without a heart connection, takes too much of a toll on her resolve?

What an amazing story. I loved watching both Zack and Kate mature and evolve in their own ways. Moreover, their interactions with Zack’s young son were heartwarming, and the interplay of the other Cold Fury characters was equally inspirational. In particular, I really loved Sutton (the heroine from Alex). Sutton’s ability to see through outwardly appearance to what truly lies underneath, and lack of concern with social appearances, never mind her commitment to helping her friends find true happiness, really touched me. Now I know that I must go back and read Alex asap! Fortunately, Amazon presently has it on sale for just $0.99, so I for one know I will be enjoying this story soon! Additionally, I’m looking forward to Ryker’s story, another enigmatic secondary character from Zack, due to be released in September of this year (2015).

Source: Review copy provided in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  B.J.O. | Jun 11, 2015 |
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