Wild About You
Okay, here’s my confession of the week: I don’t like cheesecake. Every so often, I try it because I wonder if my taste will change and I’ll finally cotton on to what half the world seems to love. But I don’t. I find it cheesy and filling and slightly nauseating and kind of gross — sweet cheese? Ew. In the same way, I know there’s a market for this kind of light, funny paranormal, and I know that Kerrelyn Sparks was is one of the pioneers of the sub-sub-genre. But not my cup of cheesecake, really.
It’s the first time I’ve read Ms. Sparks, and the first time I’ve delved into her paranormal series, so I was prepared for a lot of catching up and info dumping and confusion. To my pleasant surprise this wasn’t the case — there are clearly back stories to the supporting characters (or stories to come), but they weren’t intrusive to the flow of Elsa and Howard’s story. On the other hand, I sure as hell don’t have the yen to read anything else. And there weren’t any info dumps because they weren’t necessary — there’s, like, almost no world building here. Ms. Sparks is to vampires and paranormals what Julia Quinn is to Regencies, I’d say. The setting is just incidental to the characters; it doesn’t really matter. So whether you like their books is how much you like wallpaper historicals, or wallpaper paranormals in this case.
I don’t mind the wallpaper — innocuous is how I would describe this book — except the room furniture is pretty dull as well. Elsa and Howard are…fine. She’s a really tall demolisher on a home improvement show (with ancestral links to witches) and he’s a really really tall security guy who’s a Kodiak shapeshifter. They have a link through their ancestors — one of his killed one of hers, and Elsa’s dying ancestor cursed Howard’s ancestors to die off or something. Look, does it matter? Not really. It’s kind of laid out on platter for you to accept, and if you decide to skip the cheesecake it’s not going to make a difference to the rest of the meal.
The rest of the meal is pretty bland. He’s actually been kind of obsessing over her; he sees this giantess on TV and falls in love with her, buying up all her DVDs and watching them over and over again. Kind of creepy actually, but his friends don’t see it that way because they phone the TV show and say that his house needs renovating, so they fly over into the backwoods of upstate New York where Howard freaks Elsa out, then charms her with donuts and his ways with children, and then his vengeance against an old enemy pops up…and then I kind of forget what happens. Oh right: They live happily ever after.
Yeah, this wasn’t my kind of book. It was fine. I didn’t hate it, and it didn’t stress me out. But subtle? Original? Any kind of interesting? Nah. Not my thing. And now I know, don’t I?