Amazon discontinued the ability to create images using their SiteStripe feature and in their infinite wisdom broke all previously created images on 12/31/23. Many blogs used this feature, including this one. Expect my archives to be a hot mess of broken book cover images until I can slowly comb through 20 years of archives to make corrections.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Digital Review: Like a Record Player

I have publicly said, many times, that I love first person point-of-view. If anything could possibly get my ovaries out of permanent vacation mode, more first person romance novels would probably be it.  Well, I've finally found out where all the first person books in Romancelandia live.

In self-publishing.

Spin by Bella Love is the first in a sexy contemporary novella series, and does what all first books in series should do.  That is to say, even with my quibbles, I'm looking forward to the later installments featuring the hero's friends and business partners.

Jane MacInnee ("Janey Mac") has spent her entire life trying to make people forget she's from Dodge Run.  From the time she was old enough to know better, she's determined to kick up her heels and run as far away from RedneckVille as she can - including her drunken mother and an abusive father (oh, who just happened to be the town mayor).  The problem is that the only thing Jane is good at is "getting shit done."  So she figures her ticket to success is managing other people - specifically as an event planner to people who have more money than good manners.  It's while she's working a job that she thinks will catapult her into the stratosphere that she runs into Finn Dante.

Finn was the "bad boy" in Dodge Run.  The boy mothers told their girls to stay away from, and naturally none of those girls listened.  Not even Jane - who had a couple of brief encounters with him that got her all spun up.  Now she just so happens to be in Finn's backyard, and he's bound and determined to finish what they started all those years ago.  The question is - will Jane stop running scared long enough to enjoy the ride?

If you're a reader that totally goes for the whole Small Town Bad Boy thing, then this is the book for you.  Finn is so hot he could melt ice cubes on the North Pole.  He's sexy, he's charming, and he practically smolders on the page.  He also seems like a nice guy, one who doesn't let any personal baggage (his military career, his past....) get in his way.  He's a guy that isn't scared (or at least doesn't let on that he is) and he's not the sort of guy to let anything hold him back.

In contrast, Jane is very much the sort of person who is letting her baggage overwhelm her.  Her whole life has been spent trying to make people forget she's "trash from Dodge Run."  She's going to climb that ladder no matter how many butts she has to kiss, how many messes she needs to clean up, and she's going to do it all while soothing a ruffled caterer, reassuring her steamrolled client's daughter, and dodging the lecherous advances of her client's husband.  She's got a "can-do" attitude that masks the fact that she's spent her whole life running scared.

Even though this novella is told in alternating first-person points of view (between Jane and Finn) - Jane is really the character that carries this story.  She's a mess, but she's a likable, charming and sometimes funny mess.  She knows she should say no to Finn, she knows she should stay away, but she can't - because, I mean, hello?  Just look at the guy.

I did have a few quibbles with the story, but nothing that will keep me from dumping the series.  I did think there were a few uneven chapter transitions and the writing could have been smoothed out in a few places.  Also I raised my eyebrows so high during the sex scene involving food that I'm surprised they're still on my forehead - but extra points to the author for not using the old stand-bys of chocolate, whipped cream, honey or champagne.  Trust me, there is no way you're going to guess.  Still, I had a good time reading it, and I was engaged by the characters.  Heck, I even read the teaser for the next story featured at the end, and that's something I never do.

Final Grade = B-

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