To Kiss a Frog
I do love books with brainy heroes and heroines, so I was really looking forward to reading To Kiss A Frog, a book with a scientist heroine. Well, Elaine Smith may be a scientist, but she wasn’t very bright. And the book was nothing special either.
When Craig Thibodeaux, uncharacteristically for him, refused to sleep with Lisa LeBieu, he managed to tick off her grandmother, Madame LeBieu, who is rumored to be a Voodoo queen. The rumors prove to be true when Madame curses Craig to be a frog by day and a man by night until he falls in love and finds someone to love him in return. Since Craig doesn’t believe in love, he doesn’t see how he’ll ever get back to normal, especially since he can’t get around during the day. So Craig hangs around his uncle Joe’s boat dock in the small town of Bayou Miste trying to figure a way out of his predicament.
Elaine Smith is a scientist who lives in her lab, and has her head so deep in a microscope that she doesn’t notice that her boyfriend is carrying on with another woman until she catches them in the act. To forget, Elaine plans to go to Bayou Miste to study a local pollution problem. She needs a guide, and since she plans to go out mostly at night, Craig turns out to be the guide she needs.
Elaine is a klutz, and she’s scared of the water. She’s pretty though, with moss green eyes (we know that because the author reminds us every couple of pages). Craig is handsome and Elaine can’t help but notice – actually she gets that fizzy feeling whenever she is around him and pretty soon he is giving her deep kisses and groping her globes, mounds, or whatever other euphemism the author can think of for breasts.
Craig even begins to hang around Elaine in his froggy form. She thinks he’s cute, but I wondered how he lived out of water (must be the hex). Anyway, Craig and Elaine begin a hot, hot love affair but soon two problems raise their ugly heads: someone tries to kill them over Elaine’s work, and Elaine has a big attack of insecurity. Oh, yes – there is that curse on Craig too.
This is a silly book. The villain comes literally out of thin air, and Elaine changes from scared lab rat to Mighty Mouse awfully fast. Characters appear and disappear with no rhyme nor reason, and Craig goes from love ’em and leave ’em to a one-woman man way too quickly for credibility. As a couple, Craig and Elaine did scorch the sheets pretty thoroughly, but they weren’t very interesting out of bed.
When I read a romance set in Louisiana, I expect some Cajun cliches, and there are some here, but not enough to be irritating. At least Craig doesn’t call everyone chér. To Kiss A Frog, isn’t a bad book, but it had enough problems – including a resolution to the curse that didn’t satisfy at all – that I can’t really recommend it.