[623]: HIM by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy


I’ve been chomping at the bit to read this book since I got wind of it from Quest Reviews’ blog. I’d forgotten about it for a few months until the book resurfaced last week while I was wasting valuable time browsing Goodreads. Holy Hannah. *fans self* Hockey players. Gay hockey players. Gah-huh.


Since they were teens, Ryan and Jamie has attended a hockey summer camp where they learn to hone their skills on the ice. Ryan has always known that he likes boys more than girls. And he’s always been the rebellious, ballsy type who does everything to get what he wants. It just so happens that he wants his best friend, Jamie. He’s been in love with him for years. One drunken, horny night, he propositioned Jamie. After making good on a bet that he’d lost, he severed all contacts with him because he felt that he forced himself on his very straight BFF.

Years later, their respective schools are about to face off in a hockey championship equivalent to Final Four. When Jamie’s team lost, Ryan could not accept the fact that he’ll never see him again. He’s always regretted the friendship that they’d lost and the radio silence that he initiated. And since he wants to get Jamie out of his system once and for all, he’s going to do whatever it takes to do just that. Even if it means teaching at the same camp for six weeks where it all began.


I mean, who doesn’t enjoy this type of romance, right? Combine that with the hotness that is Ryan and my Kindle practically burst into flames. This is also about Jamie’s realization that he may have been lying to himself all these years. But it wasn’t a gradual thing. He didn’t suddenly realize he was gay because he couldn’t get it up with the girls. Ryan was more like an intense static electricity for him. As soon as he saw him, he knew deep down that underneath the lust was something so much more.

Ryan is a tattooed fantasy come to life. He’s aggressive, persistent, crass, and an honest-to-goodness bad boy of your dreams. Above all, he’s courageous who’s ever so willing to face the reality of who he is and would not wait for fate to intervene. I love that about him. He’d rather face the world with honesty than wait for the rug to be swept under him.

I adore the friendship and the eventual relationship between them. They had each other’s backs from day one, but they’re also very competitive. Their banter was hilarious, but man, they’re hotter when they argue.

Speaking of hot, the sex scenes are guaranteed to get you reaching for ice-cold water so you can douse yourself. My face was permanently on fire not because I was embarrassed, but because reading the sex scenes felt like rubbing ghost chili on your face: painfully hot.


This writing duo perfectly captured all the emotions of love between best friends. The insecurities, the doubts, and the joy of realizing they reciprocate your feelings. It’s also about finally figuring out who you are and what would make you the happiest in the grand scheme of things. It’s not always an easy decision, but if you’re honest with yourself, the rest will fall into place.



  • Court.Fool

    Hahaha thank for making me laugh with this review! So funny! :’D

    • Court.Fool

      Oh, yeah, this is Ellen from Quest 😀

  • Yay!! You have read Him!! I really, really enjoyed this one too 😉 I actually picked it up after not reading M/M for like months (because, yeah, gay hockey players!) and awww definitely still loving the genre. Also, SOHOT.

  • RO

    This sounds both though-provoking and steamy with a great storyline. Loved your review! Hugs…

  • Ooooh this one sounds really really hot, and I love how their friendship to relationship slowly developed! LOL ghost chili, I love that one. It sounds really sweet and a great message behind it!

  • Adriana C

    I keep reading great things about this book, that I´m adding it to my TBR list.
    Great review Joy!

  • ari

    This sounds great! Your reviews are so lovely and well-written!! xx

  • I do love the friends to lovers and it does sound second chance as well, also something I enjoy. This one also sounds Hot! I haven’t read a m/m since Lover at Last, that one I adored! Maybe it’s time to try another one. Great review-really!

  • Yaaay, I’m so glad you liked it! One of my fav friends-to-lovers mm romances.:)

  • This sounds amazing! It just jumped to the top of my TBR pile. 😀

  • Keertana @ Ivy Book Bindings

    I’ve heard only good things about these two authors so I’m excited to see that you enjoyed this one. I haven’t heard of this particular book but I’ll definitely have to check it out! Great review, Joy!

  • Ohhh. This one seems pretty awesome 😀 Thank you for sharing about it sweet girl. <3 I am curious. So glad that you loved it 😀 YAY! Lovely review, as always 🙂

  • I might just read this one. I’ve been reading more and more NA m/m romances because I have been loving Santino Hassell’s books and fully intend to read ALL of them. I really recommend Stygian. But even though I discovered my m/m romance love there, I haven’t been brave enough to try another author’s works in a similar vein. Maybe this could be a chance to branch out?

  • shootingstarsmag

    I need to read this one!!! It had been on my wish list for a long long time. I finally bought a copy the other week when it was on sale. i’m already excited the sequel is out.


  • Jenny @ Supernatural Snark

    YEAH JOY!!!! I loved this one too and can’t wait to read US:) Friends to lovers is my second favorite romantic setup after enemies to lovers – there’s just so much tension and I LIVE for romantic tension:) I’m feeling a reread of this one coming on…. 🙂

  • Melliane

    second chances romances are always so nice! I didn’t know about this one but it’s great that you had a good time like that!

  • It always seems like it would be difficult to write a book with someone else and maintain consistency…usually it’s told from two POVs, which I assume this one was?


  • Wasn’t this hot hot hot?? I was fanning myself all throughout and BLUSHING! I didn’t know half of those … umm positions …. were possible! Haha! 😀
    I’m so glad to see this was a hit for you, Joy! I have so much love these two characters! And I have so much love for this review! You nailed it as always. 🙂
    Lovely review, Joy!

  • Like rubbing chili on your face, yikes

  • Hotter when they argue? Oh boy, I definitely need to bump this baby up the pile.

  • I flicked through this one 🙂

  • I adore Elle Kennedy and I’ve heard great things about Sarina Bowen. This does sound like a wonderful story. Glad you enjoyed it, Joy! 🙂