Monday, 14 November 2011
365 books in 365 days Challenge ... book #221
Skirting the Issue - Heather MacAllister
Mills & Boon Sensual Romance
Harlequin Mills & Boon, 2003
From the back cover:
"The city: New York
The single girl: Samantha Baldwin
The solution: the skirt!
When businesswoman Samantha Baldwin discovers that her long-time rival, ruthless Josh Crandall, has overtaken her on the career ladder, she decides to play dirty too.
Her plan? To flirt her way into promotion by wearing a man-magnet skirt - one with the power to have any guy eating out of her hands in seconds! But, to her surprise, the only man Samantha attracts is Josh. And the chemistry between them lasts long after he takes off her skirt..."
The Sensual Romance line is one I remember reading when I first discovered Mills & Boon as a teenager, I liked them at the time so I thought I would give this one a go.
At the beginning of the story the heroine Sam is on the verge of a promotion that will be huge for her career and in a going-nowhere (for her) relationship. She 'catches' a so called lucky skirt, instead of a bouquet, at a friend's wedding. Deciding to change her life she moves to NYC, newly single and confident about winning the promotion. Her confidence comes crashing down when she runs into Josh, the hero, a business rival with whom she will be working. Josh and Sam once had a very brief thing going on, until Josh put a stop to it, and Sam has never forgotten her embarrassment. After Josh humiliates her during a seminar, Sam sets out to get him back by poaching one of his clients, which backfires on her spectacularly. Josh suggests that she be sent on a course to help her be less aggressive as a woman, however he soon realises this is a massive mistake and tries to redeem himself to her. Sam and Josh's bottled in feelings and frustrations erupt and they finally give in to each other. But Sam is after forever, and Josh is most definitely not.
As soon as I started reading this I realised that the book (which is part of a mini-series) is the skirt and romance equivillent of the 'Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants' book/movie - No Comment... I'm going to say this now, THE STORY DID NOT NEED THE STUPID MAGIC-ISH SKIRT. It distracted from what was good in this story and completely put me off. The story itself, if we ignore the skirt, is OK. I liked the whole love/hate and rivalry thing between the hero and heroine, it is a nice way of getting some simmering chemistry into the story, but I don't think it was made the most out of. There are some fun moments, romantic moments, and a bit of passion but not enough of anything to really make this book have punch.
Also, an apartment on Central Park West is not next to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, that's on Fifth Avenue (Central Park East) - an unforgivable mistake in my mind! Yes, I know I'm picky.