I really enjoy athletes in my m/m romance and Striker definitely fits the bill!
Max is a sports blogger who's taken an opportunity to promote himself and maybe one day become a televised sports commentator. That opportunity has brought him to Colorado...and right next door to Riley Grayson, an extremely private soccer player.
Riley is drawn to Max right from the get go but he does so like his privacy and he needs some assurances that things will remain between the two of them if they're going to go beyond being friendly neighbours who share a beer every now and then. Max agrees (I don't blame him!) and these two are quickly off to a red hot start. But soon after their relationship starts, Max is told to write a story about Riley's latest positive drug test. Will Max put his new career on the line or his new relationship?
I really enjoyed Striker! For it's length (~16, 000 words), Waters really packs a punch. I didn't feel like their relationship was rushed at all. I found it believable and the conflicts were realistic also. Max knows Riley's test is a false positive but Riley still doesn't want him to do the article. And he gives Max an ultimatum. I am definitely on Max' side and I liked how this story was resolved. There's also the fact that Riley is in the closet and he fears how coming out will affect his career and his teammates.
I did think the teammates' reaction to Riley's coming out was a bit of wishful thinking, but I didn't care. I found Striker to be both sexy and touching and highly recommend it. B+