It’s Hump Day, and I am on fire!
Okay, not literally. But last week disappeared in a morass of Kidlet illness, birthdays (husband’s and Kidlet’s both), travel, and Thanksgiving. I didn’t get anything written, which made me despair, because I was in the middle of a revision and the only thing worse than revising is having to stop and start again in the middle of it.
But then Monday came, I sat down at the laptop, and everything went great! I’ve just got three more scenes to revise and about seven to write, and I’ll have the first draft of Truly (a.k.a. “the naked beekeeper book”) wrapped up. Maybe by next Wednesday, I’ll be able to say, “I’m done.”
Anyhoo. Speaking of “on fire,” my recommendation this week is already burning up the Amazon charts, and the Twitter buzz is insane. Alice Clayton doesn’t really need me to chime in and recommend her book, but I will anyway, because I had a heck of a lot of fun reading it.
Caroline Reynolds has a fantastic new apartment in San Francisco, a KitchenAid mixer, and no O (and we’re not talking Oprah here, folks). She has a flourishing design career, an office overlooking the bay, a killer zucchini bread recipe, and no O. She has Clive (the best cat ever), great friends, a great rack, and no O.
Adding insult to O-less, since her move, she has an oversexed neighbor with the loudest late-night wallbanging she’s ever heard. Each moan, spank, and–was that a meow?–punctuates the fact that not only is she losing sleep, she still has, yep, you guessed it, no O.
Enter Simon Parker. (No, really, Simon, please enter.) When the wallbanging threatens to literally bounce her out of bed, Caroline, clad in sexual frustration and a pink baby-doll nightie, confronts her heard-but-never-seen neighbor. Their late-night hallway encounter has, well, mixed results. Ahem. With walls this thin, the tension’s gonna be thick…
The description kind of gives it away, but if you can’t tell, Wallbanger is kind of classic chick lit — light, funny, with boatloads of sexual tension and angsty conflict. It’s a first-person novel set in San Francisco, full of snark and female friendship, plus love and some personal growth. It’s not a heavy-duty novel, but if you’re feeling like reading something funny and fun that won’t break your brain, it’s a great pick! I see a lot of people talking online about the “O” jokes and the cat, Clive, and all of that is good stuff but maybe a little obvious for me. (Wow. No way to say that without sounding like a snob.) But what I really enjoyed about Wallbanger was the slow-moving courtship between Simon and Caroline. They dislike each other at first, and then they become friends. And then they become more. Each step is slow and cautious, because they know what’s happening is important, and they don’t want to mess it up. It’s very well executed and — dare I say — Romantic!
When Alice asked me if I’d read Wallbanger and consider giving her a quote to use for publicity, she did tell me it was fan fiction, knowing that puts some people off. I told her I’d read it, and I didn’t ask what it was fan fiction of. The whole time I was reading, in the back of my mind I kept trying to figure it out. My best guess was Sex and the City — a show I’ve never watched, but I understand it has three female friends, a lot of men, food, and shoes, and it’s light and frothy, like this book. After I finished reading, I looked it up and discovered that this novel is Twilight fan fiction. I was surprised. I’ve read all the Twilight books, and I see no points of comparison. The narrator is not like Bella in any way. The hero, Simon, is not like Edward. Their friends are not thinly veiled versions of the vampires. The plot is not similar. The setting is not similar. The age and feel of the story are not similar.
All of which is to say, if you have objections to P2P fan fiction on principle, you might want to avoid this book — but if you primarily object to fan fiction that rips off the source and too closely resembles it, it’s probably not going to be a problem for you with Wallbanger.