Samhain Publishing, $3.50, ISBN 1-59998-086-X
Contemporary Romance, 2006
Can a nerd work things out with a cellist? They don’t even like the same music, after all. The Nerd Prince attempts to answer this old question that has stumped guys all over the world that are still living with their parents and wondering whether they will ever score big with a Paris Hilton lookalike. Nah, I’m just kidding, because Cade Ryan is loaded and he doesn’t live with his parents.
This one, in its current incarnation, is a revised and expanded version of the book of the same title initially published by New Concepts Publishing. I don’t know whether anyone who’s had the previous version should get this one though since I don’t have the previous version to compare this one to. At any rate, I really like this version because it manages to present a surprisingly well-developed story for its length.
Cade Ryan is living in an apartment, a far cry from his mansion that he used to share with his wife, to lick his wounds after his wife decided to leave him to marry another man. Living in the apartment just below his is cellist Shell Anderson. She doesn’t like the music he is blasting from his speakers at all while he doesn’t think highly of her kind of music but somehow these two still manage to connect on all kinds of level.
What makes The Nerd Prince work very well is the fact that the author allows the characters to interact and develop a convincing rapport that is part chemistry and part friendship based on common interests. Shell and Cade really like each other and it shows, which makes the romance between the two of them pretty convincing. The characters are likable and pretty smart and Cade especially manages to come off as so blue, vulnerable, and hurt by the end of his marriage that he makes a pretty decent hero in need of some rebound TLC.
The Nerd Prince may be short, but hey, it’s short and sweet.