Avon, $5.99, ISBN 0-06-056079-7
Paranormal Romance, 2004
“Yikes! It’s Species crossed with Barney the Dinosaur!” is my reaction when I realize the set-up of this story: nine female aliens are sent to Earth to sleep with selected men and get knocked up so that they can restore the population of their planet. Only nine? Why not just proceed with colonization? Maybe the author’s book contract with Avon doesn’t go beyond nine books or something, I don’t know. And what’s this nonsense about one actually having to have sex to get pregnant? If these aliens can build spacecrafts, surely they know some in-vitro fertilization methods, surely?
Zara is the alien in question. Like every alien or angel heroines, she’s so nauseatingly stupid and ignorant that I think I’m supposed to be charmed by her… shall we say, naïveté? She comes to Earth to get knocked up by Robert Lotello. But alas, because Robert is now living under the name Daniel Murphy because Robert kidnapped his son Will from his parents-in-law (who are, of course, baaaad) six years ago and is now running a gas station in smalltown Button Creek. Zara wants Robert because her people have studied the sperm sample Robert donated to the sperm bank ages ago and they know that he is The One with the Overactive Tadpoles. I guess having the sperm sample isn’t enough and Zara has to go find Robert to get it fresh from the source. But alas, a simple name change causes our alien woman to be lost. Where is Robert? And I wonder, don’t these aliens have some gadgets that can get them to detect and read one’s DNA to determine the correct Robert or something?
Abetted by the town cafe woman that knows and wants to know everything, Zara and “Daniel” start sparking. Zara is the waitress that every man wants but she has no driver’s license or money, she can’t run a washing machine, and she may be on the run from some men from the Department of Transportation. I’d expect someone on a mission to repopulate the world would be better prepared with homework, money, and whatever else she will need to survive on Earth, but I guess there’s probably a good reason why Zara’s people are decreasing: it’s natural selection and dumb people die.
And don’t get me started on Zara exhibiting symptoms of pregnancy two days after boinking Robert while the author asserts that Zara’s body is actually quite similar to us human beings’ in how it works.
While the author drops in mentions of The X-Files and – eeek – Roswell, Wanted: One Perfect Man has no footing on any decent sci-fi canon or common sense. It plays too much on the “idiot heroine as the fish out of water looking for sex” plot but the author doesn’t seem to have given much else thought in the execution of the story. Take away the vary glaring and ridiculous plot holes and illogical turns in this story and one will get a very average tale of a very dim-witted heroine and a one-dimensionally curt and stand-offish hero. And in the case of this reader, I really wish someone has indeed taken away the overabundance of plot holes and illogical elements in this story.