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(A Rule Book #1)

4.35  ·  Rating details ·  636 ratings  ·  266 reviews
As Tampa Bay's star center, Mark Carmelo's life was hockey, and after a bitter and public break up, all he wanted to do was focus on the game.
Until he saw her.
The one that got away.
The one he thought he'd never see again.

For thirteen years, Stevie West drowned in her lackluster life. Recently divorced from her “roommate” with passionless benefits, she was ready to start
Published (first published March 15th 2018)
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Average rating 4.35  · 
Rating details
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Olga therebelreader
This is a completely scorching hot hockey second chance romance. Aside from the sexy times Mark and Stevie have, I loved the little insecurities, it brought out the sweeter side in both of them. Mark is a twenty-six yr old hot and very popular hockey player with trust issues due to his cheating ex. Stevie is a thirty-two yr old woman who has newly divorced her high school sweetheart. She is a pretty, curvy woman who doesn’t feel comfortable with her body. But, Mark finds her curvy figure sexy as ...more
Natalie ✩★ The Biblioholic ★✩
Mark Carmelo was the was the star center for Tampa Bay. Hockey was his life and after a very public heartbreak, he put all of his focus back into the game. But something was missing. A chance meeting in a bar leads him to Stevie West. Their instant chemistry was electric. They wanted each other. They were definitely feeling each other. She was married. Fast forward a year, her marriage is over, they bump into each other, and all bets are off. While hockey is still his life, he’s found hope and l ...more
Dilek VT
Dec 19, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: sports-romance
3,5 stars

This is a sports (hockey) romance. The books starts in a strong way and I thought it was going to be a 4 or 5-star book for me but after they get together and become a couple, it drags and it drags a lot, unfortunately!

The beginning of the book is awesome; they meet in a bar when she is married and unhappy, lost herself and her dreams in a meaningless relationship. They have an instant and strong attraction and there is some harmless?! flirting. Even though they both want it, they do no
Nov 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(Romance novel)
Definition: When a reader *ahem, cough, cough, me* has no defensive mechanism between herself and her goals of daily life (housework...showering...any manner of productivity); therefore, giving the author a chance to skate and shoot their words (or THIS BOOK!) at will. Usually, a major lapse in the reader’s household life.

*giggle* I jest, I'm kidding, of course! The previous little rewrite was from the initial opening definition in Breakaway. I've read my fair share of sp
Karlie (cozyreadsandtea)
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
*4.25 stars - Ahhh I loved this book! I swear Amanda’s writing is the best thing ever. I get hooked every time, it’s so beautiful! Also these characters and there chemistry. It was totally swoon worthy and off the charts with passion. The story line and plot were wonderful. It was such a cute, relaxed, but beautiful story!! Excited for more in this series and Amanda has definitely become an auto buy author for me! ♥️♥️
Breakaway is the perfect hockey romance thanks to Mark and Stevie. They have amazing chemistry. I really enjoyed the seven year age gap between them. Yes, Mark was young but very mature for his age. Their relationship took time to develop but it was done with so much attention to their chemistry and attraction that I enjoyed them being on dates and discovering one another.
The hockey games and references were great too. Stevie’s BFF Reagan caught my attention as did Mark’s team mate and friend Br
Mg ♥ The Bookishmedialite
Mar 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
"Time wasn't enough to hold a person. Time was fragile, and loyalty could only get you so far."

I'm a huge fan of A.M. Johnson. She writes a new book, I read it. No questions asked. She has the ability to make me sob my way through a book and swoon all over the place with her heroes. Oh boy! Her heroes... Mark Carmelo was EVERYTHING!

I have never felt such a connection with a character before, of course, I have loved lots of them but what I felt with Stevie was totally different. It w
A.M. Johnson
Mar 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)

I hope you guys love Mark and Stevie as much as I do =)




book bruin
Oct 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
Re-Read 4/2018
For this re-read, I actually listened to the audiobook and it was pure perfection!! Aaron Shedlock and Tracy Marks were amazing as Mark and Stevie! Both were just the right amount of sexy and sweet and even if you've already read the book, I definitely recommend the audio! Every emotion is heightened and the narration will have you feeling all the feels! Aaron Shedlock is beyond sexy and continues to amaze me with his range and talent! A fantastic book and wonderful audio!

I lo
Audible: Narrators – Tracy Marks and Aaron Shedlock

Both of these narrators do an exceptional job of bringing to life Mark and Stevie. Their voices give deeper characterization to A.M. Johnson’s words and I loved how they were never monotone or flat but always flowing, always sharp and clear and always perfect. I’m a huge fan of Tracy Marks but now I’m adding Aaron Shedlock to my list of favorites.

A year ago, Stevie was struggling with a huge life decision. After spending a platonic evening with
Mindy Lou's Book Review
Apr 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports, 2018
Narrator Review: Tracy Marks & Aaron Shedlock
Distinguishable between characters: 5 Stars
Impersonating opposite sex: 5 Stars
Accents: 5 Stars
Any critiques: None
Overall enjoyment of Performance: 5 Stars.
Recommend audible version: Yes, Highly recommend! Tracy Marks is one of my favorite narrators. Aaron Shedlock is new to me and he did a fantastic job. I absolutely love when an audiobook has both a female and male narrator.

Story Review:
I'm excited to find a new hockey series AND a new author to wa
Vanessa (nessreads)
*ARC kindly provided in exchange for an honest review*

5 "Can I get a slice of Mark Carmelo, please?" Stars!!!!!!

I'm a sucker for sports romances. And Breakaway, fed my sports loving hunger. This hockey romance left the biggest smile on my face. And honest, I haven't stopped smiling since I finished reading a couple of hours ago. AM definitely didn't disappoint. But come on, it's a given. I knew before I even started reading that I was going to love this book. And one, not so small particular asp
Cranky - The Book Curmudgeon
Feb 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
5 Cranky Stars

I want to preface this review by saying that A.M. Johnson writes the best first kiss in her books and this one is no exception. In fact, it’s in the top of the first kisses of her books. She had me leaning into the book like it was happening to me. Seriously after reading this you’ll want all of Mark Carmelo kissing all over you too.

Stevie is fresh of a divorce from Ben. He in a way stole her light and she found herself molding herself to his ways and lost herself. One year prior s
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018reads, athlete, army
4 - 4.5 stars

This being my first book from A.M. Johnson I wasn't sure what to expect. I'm happy to say it was better than I thought it would be. Plus I like Tampa Bay the real team and it's rarely used yet. The hockey writing was good and it had all the excitement I love about the sport. Mark Carmelo was a hot hockey player hero plus a down to earth solid guy. I liked him, he has definite swoon factor.

I will say this story had a one that got away feel and second chance romance in it. Older woma
Mar 11, 2018 rated it liked it
***ARC Provided by the Author and Give Me Books***

I enjoyed this title overall. I liked their first meeting, that there was a chemistry there which they were not able to deny, but did not act on...there is an appeal to the one who got away being that one because they couldn't act on the attraction due to commitments to another person.

I liked Mark, I thought he was an interesting character and I liked who he was as a person.

Stevie was, maybe, a little less likeable for me. I struggled with her a
Nov 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars for this stunning book!

"The weight that held my heart broke free and fell into my gut, raising every last one of the butterflies from the dead."

I was lucky enough to be on the receiving end of an ARC of Breakaway, even though I've never read one on Amanda's books before. So actually I had no idea what I got myself into. But reading about a hot NHL player can't do any harm, or so I thought....

"His touch was breath and I needed to inhale it."

Do you know the feeling of having a stressful
Joyce Mercês
Mar 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018


I have a teeny tiny list of "Favorite Authors" and A.M. Johnson is part of it. And she's an evil genius, just so you know. She played with my emotions with this book and I loved it!

Breakaway is one of the best books I read this year. I can't even say that I wasn't expecting to be crazy about it... I knew it was going to blow my mind. AND IT DID!

The story is funny and sexy and THE WORDS... The way Amanda writes! Gah!!!!! She's so good!!!!!!

It was beautiful seeing Stevie growing and becoming a str
Nerdy Dirty & Flirty
Mar 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In Breakaway I was introduced to hockey player Mark and slowly fell in love with him. He has baggage from a recent, very public, and very bad break up, but meeting Stevie changed his whole world. She is coming out of her own break up. When she and Mark first met, she wasn't happy with her life and meeting him gave her the courage she needed to make a change. The second time they meet there's no denying the attraction they felt the first time and now with them both being free to explore it they t
Rhonda Ziglar
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
5 WINNING GOAL STARS!! This Book will be one of my top picks for 2018. Talk about feels, this story has it all, I would find myself tingly and smiling all the way through. Mark is the perfect guy, athletic, sexy as sin, rich, sweet, but has some trust issues. Stevie is beautiful, natural, fun, but was in a long time relationship since high school. These two find each other and sparks fly and I loved watch their story be told. A.M. Johnson is quickly becoming one of my all time favorite authors. ...more
Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book!! I was captured from the beginning and could not put it down. Mark & Stevie take a chance on each other after suffering in previous relationships. I loved their instant attraction to each other.
Mark is a very down to earth guy and oh so swoon worthy. Stevie is adorable, caring and she just wants to have fun for a change.
It is such a beautifully written story and I will definitely read it again! You will love it too!!
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: dnf

The blurp is very promising. It seems like a romance where the heroine is older than the Hero. Listening into 60% of the audio book, I lost interest. The plot is all over the place. No focus. No depth in the content. I can not connect to the characters. Nothing work.

2 stars
Audiobook Review:
Overall 4.5*
Performance 5*
Story 4.5*

"Second chance at a second chance."
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Oh yes, for sure! I loved the story and Tracy and Aaron are perfect! They did a really terrific job giving life to Stevie and Mark. Aaron is a new-to-me narrator, but now that I've found him I'm going on a binge!

What did you like best about this story?
I had no idea going in that this was an older woman/younger man story, (one of my very favorite trope
Andi Isack
Mar 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
* ARC provided in exchange for an honest review*

This is a sport romance. And what are sport romance famous for? An insanely good looking hero, right? Well guess what? Mark Comelo is more than that. Yes his body is perfect, but what is going to take your breath away is his heart.And here I thought is impossible to fall in love with a fictional character first for his heart and than for his body. But Mark is perfection. Just the way he is. Mark is beautiful inside and out. He will gain your heart
Unapologetically romantic book blog
1. Be the captain of ( a ship, aircraft, or sports team).
Synonyms: command, run, be in charge of, control, manage, govern.

If Amanda was my captain I would follow her to the end of the earth, to hell and back, into the eye of the storm and into a five on three situation where the next goal is win or lose. A good captain does everything in their power to never let you down. A.M. has never let me down with her books and this one is no different. She will tell you herself this is a litt
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Breakaway, A Rule Book Novel, by A.M. Johnson was the first full-length book I read by this author and loved it. I am a huge fan of sport romances and second chance romance, so this was right up my alley!

Mark Carmelo is a star center for Tampa Bay’s hockey team and takes his role on the team very seriously. After a very public and bitter breakup, he is determined to focus on his game and put everything else to the side. I loved Mark. Though he was a very hot, sexy and famous hockey player, he w
Michelle Krystel
I was given an advanced readers copy of this book and have decided to leave a voluntary review. Breakaway happens to be one of favourite books by Amanda besides the still series. I loved Mark from start. I loved how he wasn't a man whore or into the puck bunnies Mark was just different. And loved how hockey was a huge part of his life besides his family. Mark was just amazing I couldn't help but want more and more of him. I couldn't help but hate Mia more and Mia she truly showed what kind of pe ...more
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was ok
It started off so well and then I lost all interest. Their initial meet is great, I liked their chemistry. As soon as they get together though, the entire story starts dragging. Nothing really happens and at the same time the style is oddly flowery and over-the-top. I'm surprised I actually finished it.
Kat's Books & Brews
Mar 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
My first A.M. Johnson novel and boy was it gooooood!!! I was super excited to start it, because one, HOCKEY PLAYER, and two, J loves Johnson's work so I knew I was in for a treat.
I will state that I was nervous, because I don't like when the H is younger than the h, but my worry was quickly put to rest. Breakaway was written soooo well! I literally enjoyed every minute of it. It was also HOT! Get ready people! You’re gonna love it!

Mark Carmelo had his shit together. He was all alpha male, but
Heather C
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, march-2018
Breakaway is a sweet hockey romance that will make your heart skate and your soul fly. It is the first book in what is promising to be a fantastic series from A.M. Johnson.

Stevie married her high school sweetheart and had been with him for thirteen years. She’s been a shell of the person that she was meant to be and finally made the decision to divorce. Newly moved back to her hometown, Stevie comes face to face to the man she met a year ago. The one who made her realize that her life could be m
Mar 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I am a HUGE fan of A.M. Johnson's words and this book did not disappoint. Stevie has to be one of my absolute favorite female characters I've read to date. Her story is one that many of us can relate to and it just clicks. Bring Mark into the picture and that's when I remind myself why I love reading romance.
A.M. Johnson always has a way of grabbing onto your heart and never letting go.
This book is different from all her others. It's light and heartfelt and leaves you with all these
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A.M. Johnson lives in Utah with her family where she works as a full-time nurse. If she’s not at the hockey rink with her kiddos, you’ll find her buried in a book or behind the keyboard. She loves romance and all things passionate. Amanda enjoys exploring all genres and bringing life to the human experience.

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