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Pucked Love

Written by: Helena Hunting
Length: 7 hrs and 49 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (21 ratings)
Price: CDN$ 37.53
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Publisher's Summary

Available in audio first, a sizzling new stand-alone by New York Times best-selling author Helena Hunting! 

As an NHL player, relationships haven't been my thing. Shrouded in secrecy and speculation, they never last very long. But then that's what happens when you require an NDA before the first date. 

Until Charlene. She's like a firefly. She's elusive, and if you catch her she'll burn bright, but keeping her trapped dulls her fire and dims her beauty. 

I caught her. And as much as I might want to keep her, I'll never put the lid on her jar. Not at the risk of losing her. So I've let her set the rules in our relationship. 

But as long hidden secrets expose us both, I discover exactly how fragile Charlene is, and how much I need her. 

We're all broken. We're all messed up. Some more than others. Me more than most. 

©2018 Helena Hunting (P)2018 Audible Originals, LLC.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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AMAZING....

I couldn't wait for Darren and Charlene's story and Helena defiantly didn't disappoint! I hope there will be more in this series ❤️

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Saved the best for last!

I have anxiously waited for Darren and Charlene’s story since Pucked came out and it was so worth the wait! I admit that I was originally disappointed that it was coming out on Audible so much earlier than print and was going to wait it out until November. But it was Darren! There would be no way I would be able to wait that long knowing the story was out there so I broke my audiobook cherry... and I’m so glad I did!
This story is everything. It has the humour we crave from Helena and I found my self laughing out loud and then looking around to see if anyone was watching me. The sexy times were SMOKING!!!!!! And confirmed what I had a feeling would happen... Darren is by far my favourite Pucked man. The twists and turns were quite a surprise and I couldn’t predict the outcome or pause the story to do “real life” things because I just had to know what was going to happen. The feels! Oh the feels! This story combines all the fun of the Pucked world with the sensitivity of the Clipped Wings world.
Absolutely a 5 star story and I can not wait for November to read it again!!!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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fantastic book!

Loved this one, but disappointed with Sebastian York's attempt at a Scottish Accent Haha ❤

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  • Dar
  • 2018-07-14

5 "I'll never put a lid on you" stars

#Audible1
Darren and Charlene, the mystery on what has been going with them has been alluded to, hinted at, and teased at in almost each book up until this point. What is the nature of their relationship? What is up with the pearls? Why doesn't Charlene share details? Doritos mean, what? The answers are all addressed, and what you think, even as you start the book, is not what it is

What it is is a million times better, and while listening to this book, I laughed like a loon, I cried as my heart ached for both Darren and Charlene, singularly and together, and smiled with absolute happiness for them, and their friends, as everything came together, and lives fell into place for everyone. All of Charlene's and Darren's pieces fit so perfectly, everyone but them saw it, even when no-one completely understood what their pieces were, and that was a testament to how wonderful they are together

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What a way to end the series

I have enjoyed every book in this series and I think this is the perfect way to finish the story. Saying that I am sad it’s over. Darren and Charlene’s story maybe my favourite one.

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  • Melissa B.
  • 2018-07-21

5 Pucking Amazing Stars

Hands down off the charts AMAZING!! Darren and Charlene's story is one I've been waiting for and it was definitely worth the wait! Being able to get the insight into Darren and Charlene individually as well as their relationship was eye opening, intriguing and craziness. The epilogue was the highlight for me and I'm going to miss these characters so much!

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Jess F
  • 2018-07-12

Worth The Wait

As a Pucked Series fan, I have wanted Darren’s story since the beginning. It was everything and I couldn’t be happier.

Darren and Charlene have been a mystery. I enjoyed getting to know the real deal behind their relationship, and their personal stories. Charlene is wonderful, but Darren. Oh sweet Darren. He is on the top of the list of ultimate book boyfriends.

The narration was amazing and kept me engaged. Do yourself a favor and listen to this story.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • bookbruin
  • California
  • 2018-11-09

#Darlene Was Worth the Wait!

From the start of this series, I have always been intrigued by Darren and Charlene's mysterious relationship. Where the others are often loud and lack a personal filter, Darren and Charlene have always been tight lipped and secretive. This final book in the series did not disappoint and Sebastian York and Stella Bloom did an amazing job bringing these characters to life. York gave Darren the perfect amount of alpha protectiveness and vulnerability, while Bloom was charming and playful as Charlene. Though this is book 7 in the series, it can be read/listened to as a standalone. It would be best enjoyed and appreciated however, if you have read the previous books.

All of Helena Hunting's trademark wit and laugh out loud moments are there, but there are tender and serious moments in Pucked Love as well. I loved the versatility of the narrators to switch from significant and meaningful to lighthearted and hilarious. I don't want to reveal too much, but learning the history and baggage that both Darren and Charlene carry explained so much about their personalities and relationship. I think Darren may be my favorite Pucked hero and honestly, you can't beat the cover of this book/audio ;) It's always fun catching up with the entire Pucked gang and their cameos (big and small) were a wonderful addition. I also loved the overall message of family (blood related or not) and how it played such a huge role in the book. The epilogue made my heart so full and though it's bittersweet to see this series end, I'm happy with the journey Helena Hunting has taken us readers/listeners on. I do hope that this is not good bye forever though and would always be happy to see more from the Pucked world! #Darlene was worth the wait!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • B
  • 2018-07-31

so pucking good!

loved it, I love the whole series, I hope theres more soon to come, this book answered so many questions that I've had for years!I love that it was released on audible first!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Jessica Amaya
  • 2018-07-31

Love Darlene!

It was amazing to find out the reality behind Darren and Charlene's story. The wrenches thrown into that closet involve the kind of shenanigans that Helena Hunting has brought to the entire Pucked Series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Big_Foot_Girl
  • 2018-07-30

She did it again!

I freaking loved every second of it. I was worried about listening to it because I’ve only read the other books. I enjoyed the audible story just as much as the others. This world that Helena created brings me joy and laughter every time I visit.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Lisa M. Mandina
  • 2018-07-30

Strap-on sword fights & The Harvest Coop Candy

If you know me, you know I rarely pre-order and pre-pay for books. I just prefer to wait till they're out. But this book was released as audio before physical book, and I decided I had to go ahead and pre-order it. I thought about saving it for my drive to Book Bonanza, since Helena Hunting was one of my MUST meet authors, but I couldn't wait, and as soon as it was available, I had to start listening. Charlene and Darren have always just kind of been in the background of the other books in a way. In the way that Charlene was Violet's best friend and she was dating Darren. Now, I love Violet, and her craziness. But let's just say that Charlene and Darren have their own brand of crazy, sexy, you name it. As usual with one of Hunting's books, I had a ton of notes that I made on Goodreads as I listened to this. At first I wasn't sure if I was going to like Darren. But after he had a talk with Alex, and I realized that he just wasn't really up on how to have a real relationship, I got to like him a lot more. I loved the stats that Charlene said he kept about their relationship. I loved hearing about where Charlene's box of "I thought it would be fun, but I changed my mind" came from.

Charlene's mom killed me. But then most of the parents in these stories are so funny. And then when the girls all went to the sex convention, OMG! I totally knew that Violet was going to have a "sword-fight" with the strap-on. I just knew it. Then Charlene's background at The Harvest Co-op was one that I wasn't sure just how bad it got. That was something that kept going throughout the story, and kept me on the edge waiting to hear just what had happened there. Darren's family issues fit perfectly with Charlene's, well, especially with her mother. I loved the bit about Charlene's candy as well.

One funny thing about the story tied in perfectly to something the author said at a panel at Book Bonanza. She said that she has to actually sometimes get into the positions for the sex scenes to figure out how to write them. I was having trouble picturing the final scene in this book, so I told her that and we laughed and figured it out.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • The Fairest of All Book Reviews
  • 2018-07-20

I Pucking Love Darren and Charlene!

All throughout Helena Hunting’s Pucked Series, she has provided small insights and brief details about who Charlene and Darren are as individuals and as a couple, and because of the limited information given, readers don’t really know these two characters very well. I mean…it’s clear that Charlene and Violet as well as Darren and Alex share incredible friendships and that they’ve both found a small group of friends who have become their family, but other than those facts and the random conversations that reveal a few more interesting tidbits, much about Charlene and Darren’s pasts and presents remain unknown, so heading into Pucked Love, I was beyond ready for Hunting to give me the dirt on both Charlene and Darren and gain so much needed information to fully picture exactly who these two characters are.

And BOY does Hunting give readers a complete character sketch of both of them, and despite the fact that I could have never imagined how messed up Charlene and Darren’s back stories would be or how their childhoods could singlehandedly be what’s preventing them from going ‘all-in’ with each other, Pucked Love delivers one amazing story that proves just how perfect Charlene and Darren are for one another and how their separate broken pieces fit so well when they are molded together.

My first piece of advice for readers heading into Charlene and Darren’s story is to not go into the story with any preconceived notions about them because regardless of what readers think they know about the hero and heroine, they’re not even close because what Hunting has provided readers with when it comes to Alex and Violet’s best friends only skims the surface of who these two characters are; the truth about them can only be provided through reading their story, told through their own perspective, and now that I’m finished with Pucked Love, I can unequivocally say that Charlene and Darren are right next to Violet and Alex as my favorite Pucked series characters.

Even though Charlene and Darren have been together for two years and have been friends with the other couples of the series for that time, both of them as well as all of their friends are more than aware of the fact that their relationship is not like the others, and while the opening scene of Pucked Love doesn’t bode well for Charlene’s friends’ counterparts’ views on Charlene and Darren’s connection, what they witnessed doesn’t shed the kind of the light on Charlene and Darren that the guys think it does, but it is the catalyst for the changes that begin to take place with these two extremely private and independent characters.

Darren Westinghouse is an intense and stoic man - one who prefers to live out of the spotlight and in a carefully constructed environment where he is in complete control. No one, not even Alex and especially Charlene, knows all of Darren’s sides because he only shows them what he wants them to see and anything that’s too personal, too messed up, or too extreme gets locked away in a place that he would much rather never dwell on again. But with the expansion draft, the playoffs, and a few unexpected encounters, Darren is going to need to bare all of his secrets and hope that once the truth is told that Charlene will still stand by him because even though he never truly acknowledged it, he loves Charlene with everything that he is and he refuses to give her up.

Once everything is laid out in the open, readers will understand just how amazing of a man Darren is and they’ll have a newfound respect for the man who lived through a messed up childhood that distorted his perception of everything associated with relationships and still managed to be a kick butt friend and hockey player and a more than giving and loving boyfriend even if his ways of showing it are rather unconventional.

I’ve always been intrigued by the close relationship that Charlene and Violet share. They seem like polar opposites but they’re each other’s constant and that will never change. Charlene’s childhood was just as jacked up as Darren’s but on opposite ends, and once Charlene’s truths are told/revealed, it’s more than clear as to why Charlene thrives on stability and independence and prefers to move forward with constancy, which means she doesn’t handle change well nor does she want to talk about her feelings or be vulnerable around anyone. The perception people have when it comes to Charlene is important to her; she doesn’t want to be seen as weird or different, even though that’s exactly who she is, and while there’s nothing wrong with Charlene, she cannot handle anyone knowing about her past because she’s afraid it will leave her with no-one and nothing.

I have to admit that Charlene’s hesitancies and refusal to change the dynamics of her relationship with Darren frustrated me way more than the backwards steps that Darren took, but that doesn’t mean I don’t understand why Charlene was so afraid; it’s just that Darren was more than trying and I just really wanted them both to see themselves as worthy of the other.

Hunting’s Pucked series is not just about the love between a couple; it’s also about the bond that is formed amongst friends, and in Pucked Love, it’s clear that the friendships that Darren has with his teammates and his small group of friends as well as the connection Charlene has with the women who she considers her tribe are crucial to their lives and responsible for helping both Darren and Charlene to see what they could have with each other if they’d only allow everyone in.
I absolutely LOVED EVERYTHING about Pucked Love! The thoughtful and sexy storyline, the strong friendships, the laugh out loud situations, the heartfelt moments, and the unique insights into who Charlene and Darren were and are. Sebastian York and Stella Bloom were perfect narrators for the story; they perfectly capture the hero and heroine’s idiosyncrasies and the mind games they have with themselves due to everything that has happened to them in their life.

The Pucked series is one of my favorite sports romance series of all time, and it’s due to Hunting’s storytelling, the way she crafts her characters, and her ability to create storylines that are full of steam, sass, and scandalous moments;)

5+ Poison Apples

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Jenn@YeahOrNeighReviews
  • Utah
  • 2018-07-19

A great ending to the series!

The final book in the series is my first read and I loved it! I always listen to the comedy romance books while at work, and my co-workers enjoy making fun of me when I start laughing out loud. This book has plenty of romance, laughter and serious moments. I enjoyed the characters and the storyline, and will definitely be going back to read the rest of the series now too!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Kara Hildebrand
  • Maricopa, AZ USA
  • 2018-10-29

Sebatsian and Stella are oustanding!

I'm a late fan of Helena Hunting and didn't discover her until Hooking Up. I've read everything since then and then went back and listened to the entire Pucked series on audio in two weeks. So, when I heard that Pucked Love was coming in audio first, I grabbed it immediately! Helena never disappoints with her sexy, witty banter, fun and hilarious situations and over the top antics we've come to love from these couples! We’ve known Darren and Charlene for a long time and their relationship has always been odd. Not bad odd, just not like the others. Darren is so much more quiet and broody than the other guys and Charlene is tight lipped about their sexual encounters, unlike the other ladies. I loved listening to their story unfold. They are so similar with pasts they are trying to outrun. What happened to them made them who they are. Darren finally realizes he wants more. He wants all of Charlene. She's his firefly and he doesn’t want to catch her, he wants to watch her fly and light up. Charlene isn't used to this side of Darren. He calls, texts, he's attentive and sweet. But is it real? Yes, they've been together for a while, but that doesn't mean things don't change. She's afraid of being caught up like she was in the past. She wants to trust Darren, but trust is so hard for her. She's fragile but not breakable. Darren is commanding but soft. No one knows what to think of the new change in their dynamic, but their friends are all supportive and funny as always. Will Darren and Charlene be able to give in a little to get what they both need from each other? Will their pasts define who they will be in the future, or can they change their destiny? I loved this story! I loved being able to just sit back and listen. The narrators are fantastic and they just breathed life into Darren and Charlene. I heard the emotion in their voices and felt the chemistry. I knew Darren was going to be something else and he was everything I wanted him to be and more!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful