Summary: (From the publisher): Eric Bittle may be a former junior figure skating champion, vlogger extraordinaire, and very talented amateur pâtissier, but being a freshman on the Samwell University hockey team is a whole new challenge. It is nothing like co-ed club hockey back in Georgia! First of all? There’s checking (anything that hinders the player with posession of the puck, ranging from a stick check all the way to a physical sweep). And then, there is Jack—his very attractive but moody captain.
My Rating: 4.5/5 Stars
As many of you know, I often fangirl about books, film, and my favorite fandoms here at Fangirl Fury. One of my favorite things that I rarely fangirl about here?Hockey! I love watching hockey, and I’m a huge New York Rangers fan. So when I heard that Fierce Reads had ARCs of Ngozi Ukazu’s much-loved webcomic, Check, Please!, at Book Expo/Book Con, I knew that I needed the perfect graphic novel for me.
Check, Please: #Hockey met my expectations and more. I only read some of the first few updates online before jumping into the book. I love Ngozi Ukazu’s art style throughout, and I like how she changed it when exploring characters’ pasts. My favorite example is Chapter 6: The Hockey Prince, where we get some of Jack’s back story. Obviously, Bitty is the heart (and king baker) of Check, Please, but I think my favorite character was Jack! I totally fell the dreamy star hockey player trope (PSA FOR THIS TO BE MORE OF A TROPE IN YA), and I loved seeing his relationship expand with Bitty.
What gives Check, Please even more heart is its side characters, aka the members of the Samwell Hockey Team. Ransom and Holster added the perfect comic relief, and like Jack, Shitty (well maybe not his name) was a bit of a dreamboat. I also loved Lardo for her female perspective.I may or may not be shipping Shitty and Lardo even harder than a certain couple..
And while I can read an entire graphic novel about Bitty’s baking, Check, Please completely delivers on the hockey. From strategy meetings to games, what connects all of our characters is their love for the sport and the ice.
I admit that I was disappointed that the book ends with year 2/the end of Bitty’s sophomore year. Which means that I am more than ready for the next book, Check, Please!: Sticks and Stones. However, I like how the end of the book includes some extra comics, including a hockey terminology session with Ransom and Holster, and Bitty’s tweets.
This review is based on an advance reading copy. By no means did this affect my thoughts or opinions.
Do you read the Check, Please! online? What are some of your graphic novel recommendations? Share in the comments!