This book has a cute blurb, a cool cover, and a crap-ton of glowy reviews telling me how fabulous it is. So, why was I only able to read about 20% of the book before I angrily deleted the file off my Kindle? Well, it’s like this…
Jack, the hero:
There’s a number of things I didn’t like about Jack right from the start.
Juliet, the heroine:
Juliet is far less annoying than Jack, but I’m not a fan of the whole “grumpy lady hates neighbor but still can’t stop herself from staring open-mouthed at his naked chest” trope. Smart, capable women should not be rendered dumb and mute by a pretty face and a nice set of pecs, especially when the man attached to said face and pecs is a giant bag of dicks. Also, it irked me that Juliet kept mentioning how she “saves lives” at her job. She’s a nurse, so the statement is true, but real nurses don’t go around telling anyone who’ll listen about how they “save lives” all day. It’s just not done. And every time Juliet said it, she sounded really pretentious and douche-y.
90% of the other women in town:
The women that I saw in the first 20% of the story were either:
Frankly, the portrayal of women in this book was fairly disgusting. Only the heroine and the obligatory coarse older lady who helped out at the fire station were spared from looking like complete simpering fools.
The old “men are idiots” trope
Why is it that when babies show up, so many romance novel heroes turn into completely incompetent idiots? I mean, I understand when they’re overwhelmed and need help. But when they don’t seem to know how to feed or hold a baby, or have even have an inkling of what a baby might need, I’m irritated. Even my pre-teen son knows that a baby needs to eat every few hours, and that you need diapers, a crib, and clean clothes to care for one. I’m betting even he’d know how to hold a baby, too. Jack is a firefighter, a full-fledged grown-up. The fact that he is so completely clueless about babies (and assumes that a woman without children should know everything about how to care for them) is not in any way endearing or funny. It’s just...pathetic.
Lame “hose” references
One or two “hose” jokes are to be expected in a romance about a firefighter. But I only read 20% of this book and encountered so many hose references that I started considering making this book a drinking game during which I would take a shot for every time something in the book made me roll my eyes. But then I realized that if I did this, I’d die of alcohol poisoning and thought better of the idea.
I had to read the first interactions between Juliet and Jack four times before I understood what was going on because the point of view shifted every few paragraphs. So, one paragraph would be written from Juliet’s POV, then we’d switch abruptly to Jack’s. It was super jarring. (And annoying.)
So, long-story-short, I wanted Jack “giant bag of dicks” Decker to contract a nasty case of syphilis that Juliet “I save lives, I’m kind of a big deal” wasn’t able to cure him of, and eventually succumb to the disease. I’m guessing that’s not how the story ended, though, which is too bad.
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
It reeks of stigma. And in case you were wondering, stigma smells like a foul blend of burnt hair, rotting beef, and sour, chunky milk.
Other reading suggestions
Literally anything else. I mean it. Anything. Else. Pick something out of our 5-star reads section and have fun. Seriously, even if you've already read every single book in our 5-Star collection, it'd be better than reading this garbage.