So yeah, getting a copy of Lust in the Library by Amelia Fayer just about made my month. It also didn't hurt matters that Avon sent it to me all special like, with a very flattering promo letter, soft blankie, and a box of chocolates.
My reading so far this year, outside of an older Molly O'Keefe Super, Conor's Way and Rosanne Bitter has been really lackluster. I had just DNF'ed another book by an author I normally enjoy, when I started debating on what to try next. I wasn't going to pick this one up. My good angel was whispering in my ear, "You're not in the mood for erotica right now," but damn it all, my bad angel whispered, "Oh Wendy, it's only a novella - it'll take you like 30 minutes to get through - just read it already."
Next time I see that bad angel I'm punching her in the face.
This novella is essentially two connected short stories following the adventures of Sara (an assistant special collections academic librarian) and Veronica (a student who works at the library). Things open up with Sara's story as her and Veronica are spying on this hunky academic researcher type that Sara has the hots for but is too brain-dead to do anything about.
The first problem arises when, speculating about Mr. Academic Hunky, Veronica gets the brilliant idea to look up his borrowing history. OK, besides being a major breach of privacy - I can't think of any library outside of Podunk Middle Of Nowhere, let alone a Frackin' University (!) that keeps track of this. You want to know why? Because librarians are the last, and these days only, defenders of your right to privacy. And most of us don't keep these records because what we don't have we can't share - even when a subpoena is thrown in our faces. You know what we do keep track of? What you currently have checked out, right now, this minute, and anything you didn't return on time. When there is money attached, we keep track. Otherwise? Yeah, we don't. We just don't.
The irony being that a lot of people DO want us to keep track because apparently keeping a reading log is just so darn taxing! Ugh, whatever. Another rant entirely.
So yeah, Veronica tells Sara where to find Mr. Hunky in the library after her fingers do the walking and she prints out (::headdesk, headdesk, headdesk::) his borrowing history (which they shouldn't be keeping track of in the first place! ARGHHHHH!!!!!). Sara goes to find him. They start swapping spit. He asks her out. She gets flustered when some students almost catch them groping each other, she then shushes him (::headdesk::) and runs away. He shows up later that day to take her out and hand to God, this is what she says:
"That was....um...a mistake, I think, and I'm just a librarian and I don't think this can go anywhere and that was just crazy this morning, but lovely, but crazy....."Yeah. I'm done. I'm out. There's just....ugh! "Just a librarian?!?!" Seriously? "JUST A LIBRARIAN?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?" Like him being an academic is such hot shit? Really? Really?!?!
Breathe Wendy. Breathe. That's a good girl. Here, have this shot of whiskey......
But, I thought, why not try to read the second story. The one featuring Veronica. Yeah, I got so far as the part where she's working on her thesis to "get into the library science graduate program" and stopped dead.
People, librarians have master's degrees. To "get into" a library science program you do not need to write a thesis. You need to have an undergraduate degree in something (seriously, it can be anything from botany to English - it doesn't matter!) and then you need to apply for graduate school, which entails filling out some paperwork and waiting. Depending on your undergraduate GPA (grade point average) you may or may not have to take the GRE (Graduate Record Examination).
You do not have to write a thesis.
You know why someone writes a thesis? Because they are clearly nuts and want to get a PhD.
That was as far as I got. I just....couldn't take it anymore. Coupled with the whole looking up Mr. Hunky's borrowing records.....look, I'm not expecting total library drudgery here. I'm obviously willing to suspend disbelief and roll with fantasy if I'm reading erotica that takes place in a library (Sure it's a bit different in academia, but most days are golden for me when all the men that walk through the front door have heard of that mysterious substance called "soap" and actually used some....that day, not last month sometime).
Seriously, talk to a librarian. Most of us are shockingly helpful and more than happy to answer questions. I even understand that not all librarians are as awesome as I am. That some librarians are mean and that evolution just hasn't gotten to weeding them out yet. But hot damn, do you know how many awesome librarians there are on the Internet? Twitter? Blogs? Facebook? An obscene amount of them, more than willing to answer e-mails from strangers asking questions about librarianship. And for that matter, do you know how many former and current librarians write romance and/or erotic-stuff? Dude, are you a member of a writer's group? A local chapter of RWA? If there ain't a librarian in your group, sure as shootin' one of them does know a librarian and will pass along some contact information.
So yeah, done. The sad thing is, some of you are probably wondering how the sex was, and I can't even tell you that because I couldn't force myself to get that far. Honestly, I have no idea. I was so annoyed by the lack of accurate library world-building that I wanted to punch someone and/or something.
But, to be fair, this may work for someone with no direct knowledge of librarianship, and far be it from me to say someone cannot enjoy something even though it irritated the hell out of me (Rule #1 in Collection Management: There Is An Audience For Everything. Examples: Danielle Steel and Nicholas Sparks /end snark). In which case, for the sake of giving you another opinion on the matter (because one should never just rely on the Wendy's Frothing At The Mouth Again side of the story) I point you to my fellow SoCalBlogger gal pal Tracy - who reviewed this novella a few weeks back and did get far enough to know how the sex is.
Final Grade = DNF