The first night after Caroline moves into her fantastic new San Francisco apartment, she realizes she's gaining an intimate knowledge of her new neighbor's nocturnal adventures. Thanks to paper-thin walls and the guy's athletic prowess, she can hear not just his bed banging against the wall but the ecstatic response of what seems (as loud night after loud night goes by) like an endless parade of women. And since Caroline is currently on a self-imposed dating hiatus, and her neighbor is clearly lethally attractive to women, she finds her fantasies keep her awake even longer than the noise. So when the wallbanging threatens to literally bounce her out of bed, Caroline, clad in sexual frustration and a pink baby-doll nightie, confronts Simon Parker, her heard-but-never-seen neighbor. The tension between them is as thick as the walls are thin, and the results just as mixed. Suddenly, Caroline is finding she may have discovered a whole new definition of neighborly...
In a delicious mix of silly and steamy, Alice Clayton dishes out a hot and hilarious tale of exasperation at first sight...
So this was FanFic? Who knew? Not me. Guess that's probably because I don't travel in those circles. But, as I noted with Beautiful Bastard, I don't really give a rats ass about that sort of stuff. The genesis of a novel has no bearing on whether or not I will like it. So bring it on! If it's anything like Wallbanger I'll do a happy dance.
That being said, I get some of the criticizm over this book. I think it's something you're either going to love or you're going to hate. There's not a lot of grey to work with. The author's writing style is specific and sometimes over the top but, well, I loved it. I laughed so hard I nearly peed myself. Truly. I'm not embarrassed to admit it. There was such enthusiasm in the storytelling it was like being sucked in and impossible to look away. The novel's very conversational, much of the narrative is like reading dialogue that's happening in Caroline's head, with her many, um, parts. So, as I said, that's either going to work for you, or it won't.
The dynamics and chemistry between Simon and Caroline were off the charts. There are few books like that for me, where I'm totally in and squeeing all the way. On Dublin Street was another that comes to mind. There's something about a really witty, sharp, sexual assertive, and strong woman that does it for me. Couple that with a cocksure hottie, great banter and good writing, and it's gold as far as I'm concerned. These two were electric. Anytime Simon and Caroline were on the page together, I felt it sizzle. Their riposte was delicious, the barbs and bickering were yummy, and even their silent moments were filled with fire.
There's nothing reminscient of Twilight in this book. Not a single thing. The storytelling is fluid and the writing, for the most part, is spot on. I will say, though, that there are some scene which could have been truncated a bit, on occassion I felt like the story lingered too long in a particular scene, but I only took off a half star for that as the balance was really strong.
Unlike a lot of other books of this ilk, this really isn't heavy on the sexy stuff until the end. Which I thought worked really well for this particular couple. It needed to happen that way for the integrity of the relationship and I'm glad the author chose to hold off on the sexy bits until everything else was fleshed out.
And Clive? Wow, I've never met a fictional pet I was actually dying to emerge on the pages as much as Clive. He was like a little person and every scene he was in, he left his pawprint on. Too. Freakin'. Cute.
Please, if you've been frightened off by the words: Twilight FanFic, don't be. Give this a shot, it's truly worth it in my opinion.