Ah, dammit. This was so promising. Even with all the tell and no show. I was a fan of the hero, Chase, trying to get the heroine, Amanda, to date him. Even though it was semi-stalkery his staking out her restaurant and kind of being a pest. But he's a famous baseball player! I was a fan of her apparently being a double digit size and not going on about being fat. It was barely mentioned! I was a definite fan of them going out on a first date and doing nothing more than a kiss at the end. Then they went out for a few weeks before sex happened! WHA–THAT'S LIKE PERFECT ROMANCE FOR ME!
And then Stephanie Evanovich had to ruin it.
I knew the BDSM kink was coming because, like I said in a previous post, it was introduced in Chase's POV really early. I was not looking forward to that, but because of all the stuff I was liking above I was willing to power through because the story had earned that chance. I do not understand what in the hell Evanovich was thinking here . . .
Chase believes he has found the perfect woman in Amanda, but he doesn't want to scare her off with his spanking kink. So he doesn't say anything and it builds up in him until he's an insufferable crankypants and she calls him on it. She gets so pissed off at his attitude she curses at him and he grabs her and starts spanking her. Just like that.
Er, I say again, NOPE.
That is not how you start that kind of relationship. You don't just grab someone and start hitting them with no prior conversation or consent. That's not kink, or BDSM. That's assault. That's domestic violence. After grabbing her and smacking her on the ass once, then dragging her off to his bedroom to keep going, he says something like, 'you can stay or call the cops after but this is happening.' I . . . what the fuck? That's so . . . not okay. Not at all. He doesn't stop until she starts crying and then I don't even know.
And of course she stays and fucks him instead of calling the goddamn cops!
The next morning is he apologetic? Is he contrite at his behaviour? Does he sit her down to try and talk through what he did and why and would she like to do it again? Try to come to an agreement on this lifestyle? No, of course not. He's smug as shit about it because he got what he wanted and she stayed. He has a total cavalier douche attitude about the whole thing. Even when she starts to cry. He acts like any concern on her part is ridiculous. She's the one who has to start the discussion about what happened, and he's doesn't really feel like it's something that needs to be discussed. Turns out he likes to spank, sometimes as a sex-thing but not necessarily all the time. He will turn her over his knee at his discretion when he believes she's been "naughty". And his belief is that his woman should act like a lady. I shit you not. He says this. So if she does anything unladylike, especially uses profanity, he'll spank her. And apparently if she's too disobedient? I didn't get that part. She can argue with him up until a point and then he'll spank her if she goes too far? And she is not given any choice in the matter if she stays. What the shit kind of relationship is that? None of this is okay! Safe. Consensual. Sane. Say it with me, people! It's really not that hard a concept to understand.
Then Amanda starts acting like that chick from Secretary and baiting him to spank her because, just as he said she would, she likes it and wants to get him to do it. Sigh. Then, as he wanted her to do initially as a weird excuse to get around the spank!kink, she hires a manager for her restaurant so she can trail him around the country. Because she's a spineless weenine and I fucking nope on out of this story at this point. I would have earlier, after the morning after, had I not been in the shower. I looked up some spoilers of the rest of the book and just thank God I have the wherewithal to ditch this mess because the rest of it sounds terrible. Most of it about the damn spanking, and then some stupid occurrence later on.
Screw this book.
Screw these characters.
Screw the goddamn kink bandwagon. Why is it something showing up in what is supposed to be romance and not erotic romance??
You can do better than this, Evanovich.