Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Review: Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie
by Jennifer Crusie
5 of 5 stars
As I've been "getting out" more and reading other book blogs I have found myself in the quandary of suddenly needing to read a lot of books I've never heard of. This might not have hit me so hard had I not already been in a difficult reading spot. You see, for some reason this year I've been reading a lot of "adult" books. Classic, Epic Fantasy, Tough Subjects. I found myself reluctant to pick up any of the books I was reading. That is unusual for me. More like unheardof. And it wasn't because I don't like the books I am reading. I do. But I needed a break. When I read this review by Angieville, I was sucked in. I didn't even let it bother me that it was surely a RomanceRomance book.
After getting dumped in a bar by an boyfriend she really didn't like, Min overhears her ex make a bet to his good looking friend that he couldn't score with Min in a month, and Min overhears. Furious, she reasons that playing the player would get her a date to her sister's wedding and satisfy her desires for justice and revenge. But after the first antagonist date, Min realizes that she is no player and gives it all up. Good looking Calvin is happy to oblige. His charm had never failed him before, and he had enough man-hating wisecracks in that one date to last him a lifetime. Unfortunately, Min and Cal keep running into each other and have to deal with their mutual attraction and dislike.
I needed this book. It was fun and funny and kept me turning pages. I loved Min and Cal and all their friends. They felt like real people with real problems. I loved the dialogue! I loved the verbal sparring. Min knew what Cal was after (or she thought she did) and therefore had no holds on her behavior. Since she wasn't trying to impress anyone she didn't hold her tongue. I found it hilarious. Cal was confused and surprised and pulled out of his own behavior rut. I loved that she didn't have a perfect body or a perfect relationship with her mother. I loved that she was attractive even with her extra weight. I loved the little twists - and there were a few - that gave the story and characters more depth.
The real strengths of this book were the dialogue, the humor, and the characters.
I do feel like I should have two different rating scales, or something, to account for the fact that this book is not an example of amazing plotting, drama, growth, social commentary, or anything of real "value." But I would argue that entertainment can sometimes be just as "valuable." Yes, it was predictable and complete fluff. But I loved it anyway!
A mature audience. There was mild language and sexual content.