Not That Kind Of Girl
I was eager to review Susan Donovan’s latest as she’s written some of my favorite contemporary romances. My eagerness quickly changed to confusion as I tried to make sense of the opening sections. This is the third in a trilogy featuring four men-hating women, and doesn’t work well as a standalone. I felt as if I had been dropped into the middle of a book, with no clue about the characters.
Roxie Bloom runs www.i-vomit-on-all-men.com, a refuge for women spurned and burned by men. Roxie’s ex-lover Raymond, an attorney, is suing her for mocking him on her Web site. Roxie has issues with a host of other men and near the top of the list is Eli Gallagher.
Eli was the first man to interest Roxie since Raymond, and Eli had the audacity to turn her down for lunch. While attracted, Eli had other pressing concerns. He recently discovered he was adopted by the man he thought was his father and is searching for his biological father. Eli also has a troubled relationship history.
Months later, when Eli shows up at a friend’s party, Roxie is still bitter about that lunch rejection. Eli grabs her, they share a hot kiss, and then she bolts, determined never to see him again. Her determination ends when Raymond bursts into Roxie’s home, and her dog Lilith attacks him.
Raymond uses his clout to have Lilith impounded and lets Roxie know he intends to have the dog destroyed. Desperate, Roxie calls on Eli, a famous dog whisperer, to rehabilitate Lilith.
I had problems with Roxie. I didn’t understand her bitterness towards all men. I could understand hating Raymond since he’s horrific, but the bitterness she felt toward Eli seemed way over the top.
I’m sure many of us have harbored thoughts of revenge against an ex and we may even have taken action, but Roxie went too far. Catching Raymond telling his friends she was a fool and couldn’t give a decent blow job is awful. But Roxie doesn’t yell, doesn’t even throw a drink in his face. Instead she grinds a lit cigar into his head until people could smell burning flesh. If a man did this to our heroine, we would be outraged and demand legal action. In Roxie’s case, no one even suggested she get anger management therapy.
I enjoyed the book more after Eli and Roxie go to his remote home in Utah to work with Lilith. I’m not a dog owner, but I found this fascinating. My favorite character was definitely Lilith. I cared about Lilith, and wanted her behavior to improve. Troubled and troublesome in the beginning, with a habit of growling, foaming at the mouth, and biting when anyone approached, Lilith becomes a loving, friendly dog, with lots of doggie friends.
I get that Eli and Roxie are physically attracted to each other – they’re both gorgeous. And I can understand why Roxie loves Eli; he seems like a caring, wonderful man. But I just didn’t find anything particularly endearing or attractive about Roxie’s personality and how long it took her to get over her bitterness toward Eli.
Without giving away any spoilers, I found the resolution of Eli’s quest strained credulity and was completely unnecessary. So while I enjoyed much of the middle, with a confusing beginning and a disappointing ending, I can’t recommend this one.