Kimani, $6.50, ISBN 978-0-373-86332-7
Contemporary Romance, 2013
The theme of the December TBR Challenge is, appropriately enough, “Holiday Reads”. have many Christmas-themed stories lying around that are yet to be read, so for once I am spoiled for choices for a TBR Challenge. I closed my eyes and randomly picked one book unseen – Donna Hill’s Mistletoe, Baby is that lucky number 7.
For a while, I actually thought I was lucky. Alexis Montgomery is, for once, a refreshing change for a contemporary heroine. Like most people, she hopes that she would find someone one day, someone who would make her feel all these wonderful passions and such, but so far she has no luck. Still, this doesn’t stop her from having healthy, sexual relationships with refreshingly sane and nice men – not serial killers or abusive lunatics like most romance heroines tend to do. She doesn’t act like she would die if she puts out to some guy who isn’t the one, she has healthy relationships with the people around her, and she doesn’t act like she deserves a big fat A tattooed on her forehead because she is not a virgin or that she enjoys having sex with guys that she is attracted to. Do you know how hard it is to find such a nice, normal heroine in the romance genre?
She gets a job in New York. My, her future employer flies her first class out of Atlanta, and she gets to stay in a wonderful penthouse during her tenure. The boss, Graham Stone, is super hot. Oh, and Alexis is paid very well for too. For a while, I’m tempted to kill her and steal her job, until I realize she’s not real and, let’s face it, if things are too perfect, chances are they are screwed up in some ways. The colleagues could be worshipers of some creepy rat god thing, her apartment could be haunted by those creepy twins from The Shining, or her next door neighbor could be Justin Bieber. Since this is a romance novel however, featuring hot black people, we have… yes, the evil jealous hussy from hell!
Sigh, of all the things the author could have put in – Lady Gaga, killer giant termites, that creepy guy who played Mister Maker – she has to include the most tired, played out, boring plot device ever.
The story soon degenerates into a tedious tale of Alexis’s hot desires soaking her panties while in the meeting room (sorry if this sounds crass, but I’m just reporting what happens in the story) and Graham getting a tent in his pants, but Alexis hears stories of him boffing that mean and nasty Tracy, oh no. She soon starts punching her pillow with her fist when she is not spending “hours” crying and grieving. Yes, all that really happen here: somehow sleeping with this particular guy transforms a refreshingly sane woman into a hormonal nutcase who shouldn’t be allowed to go near sharp objects. Not that all this stops Alexis from sleeping with Graham anyway – I guess all that soaking of her underwear in the ballroom must have short-circuited her brain and ruined her good taste in men.
Graham is a bore – he is the usual “I can’t love, I am heartless, I am mean, because my parents blah blah blah!” cardboard cut-out. His abs may be hard enough to grate cheese, but he has all the personality of a… well, cheese-grater. His “I will keep her away from my heart, although not that far away from my penis!” antics only worsen our heroine’s increasingly nutty melodramatic antics, and the climax of the story is basically another tedious “Oh no! PREGNANT! I MUST RUN AWAY AND NEVER TELL HIM!” turn of event that only cements my suspicion that Alexis has completely lost her mind. The Christmas angle comes in the form of some sappy melodrama involving Graham’s family, and he gets better in time to marry Alexis and get rid of that mean hussy. Yes, the formerly strong heroine can’t even manage one problematic subordinate, and the big strong man has to come sort things for her.
I guess the moral of the story here is that, ladies, don’t sleep with the boss, or you will all end up a big bag of crazy like poor Alexis here. Sigh, what a waste of a character who started out so wonderful.