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See Jane Score    by Rachel Gibson order for
See Jane Score
by Rachel Gibson
Order:  USA  Can
Avon, 2003 (2003)

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* * *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Jane Alcott would like nothing more than to break into big time journalism, but so far in a lacklustre career she's caught in a rut penning The Single Girl column for a Seattle newspaper. She also writes an erotic series about the scandalous misadventures of Honey Pie and her many conquests. Helping her fictional heroine figure out how to put men into a sexual coma is fun, but really, how will she become a credible journalist writing erotica?

When Jane is offered the chance to travel with the Seattle Chinooks hockey team, she jumps at the opportunity even though she doesn't know a puck from the blue line. The players aren't happy about having a woman reporter popping into in their locker room unannounced -- women are bad luck, everybody knows that. They waste time trying to alienate Jane. She's undeterred and refuses to let the players' continuous hazing scare her off. Soon Jane isn't batting an eye when the guys drop their jocks. Not even the Chinooks' notoriously temperamental star goalie, Luc ('Lucky') Martineau, is able to successfully send Plain-Jane Alcott packing.

Luc's low opinion of reporters is legendary. Over the course of his rocky career too many of the parasites have made his life a living hell with exaggerated reporting of his career and private life. Luc's first impression of Jane only solidifies his disdain -- this petite, brainy, know-it-all woman seems just like all the other news hounds who've crossed his path over the years. He doesn't have time or patience for her or her dumb questions. But Luc and the rest of the guys soon learn that first impressions can be deceiving. Under Jane's prim and drab exterior is a woman who knows exactly what she wants and goes after it, yet also one who genuinely cares about accurately reporting what she sees at the games, on the ice and off.

When the very superstitious Luc decides Jane brings them good luck, she must perform a certain pre-game ritual that includes calling Luc a 'big dumb do-do', or lose her job. Soon the Chinooks are killing the competition, Luc realises he's having his best season ever, and he's confused. Is it just that Jane is a 'good luck charm' or is there something else about this suddenly fascinating woman that's keeping him in the zone?

Rachel Gibson creates another winner in See Jane Score. Jane and Luc are wonderful characters who balance each other well, especially Luc, who, beneath his oozing machismo, has real depth and a back-story readers will care about. Gibson also does a nice job of keeping the sexual tension stoked, and she fans the flames in all the right places. Add to that a wonderful cast of secondaries, particularly Jane's savvy best friend Caroline. I predict that See Jane Score will indeed score big points with readers.

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