On Thin Ice by Julie Cross
Brooke Parker never expected to find herself in the tiny town of Juniper Falls, Minnesota. Of course, she also never expected to lose her dad. Or for her mom to lose herself. Brooke feels like she’s losing it…until she finds Juniper Falls hockey. Juniper Falls girls’ hockey, that is.
Jake Hammond, current prince of Juniper Falls, captain of the hockey team, and player with the best chance of scoring it big, is on top of the world. Until one hazing ritual gone wrong lands him injured, sitting on the sidelines, and―shocking even to him―finding himself enjoying his “punishment” as assistant coach for the girls’ team.
As Jake and Brooke grow closer, he finds the quiet new girl is hiding a persona full of life, ideas, and experiences bigger and broader than anything he’s ever known. But to Jake, hockey’s never just been a game. It’s his whole life. And leveraging the game for a shot at their future might be more than he can give.
Each book in the Juniper Falls series is STANDALONE:
* Off the Ice
* Breaking the Ice
* On Thin Ice
On Thin Ice is the third book in the Juniper Falls series. You can easily read each book as a standalone, but I recommend reading them in order. The third book talked about stuff that happened in the other books and there are characters that appear in each one.
Jake is a local hockey star. It’s his senior year and he’s going to be captain. The senior boys take the freshmen boys out to a lake for their hazing. This has been done for 100 years (or so they have been told), so it’s tradition. Jake is uncomfortable with it, but he participates in the last part of it, after having a bit to drink. He tells the boys to run out on the partially frozen ice. It’s just a joke and he tells them to stop as they’re running. But one boy doesn’t hear him. Jake falls out of the tree and rushes to help him. Jake’s collarbone is broken and the boy is rushed to a hospital. Jake won’t turn in any of the other guys, so he gets community service helping his uncle coach the new girls hockey team.
Brooke recently moved into her grandma’s house with her mom. They lived in Austin, Texas. Brooke’s dad is in jail and her mom fell apart. Her depression is so bad that Brooke was taking care of herself. Brooke got into some trouble her freshmen year and wants to start over in Juniper Falls. She really doesn’t talk to anyone, but she and Jake have run into each other a few times. Brooke decides to sign up for the hockey team even though she’s never played before. Brooke runs at night to escape and she happened across the hazing incident. She is the one that pulled Jake out of the water and called 911.
Brooke and Jake start spending a lot of time together. She’s dealing with her mom’s depression and Jake is struggling with what happened. They find out that the hockey coaches over the years have covered up actual crimes. This needs to change and Jake decides to stand up to everyone, no matter what it costs.
And like the other Juniper Falls books, there is a heavy focus on the romance. Brooke and Jake are a cute couple that supports each other through everything while falling in love.
Warnings for hazing/bullying, attempted suicide, mental illness/depression, talk of past cutting, and there is some sexual content and swearing.
I gave this book 4 stars. Thank you to Netgalley and Entangled Teen for my review copy. This was my 200th review for Netgalley!
Have you read any of the Juniper Falls books? Have you read anything by Julie Cross?