Thursday, August 16, 2018

Book Review: The Kiss Quotient

Title: The Kiss Quotient
Author: Helen Hoang
Genre: Adult | Contemporary | Romance
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: June 5, 2018
Source: Library
Format: eBook

Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases--a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.
It doesn't help that Stella has Asperger's and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice--with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can't afford to turn down Stella's offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan--from foreplay to more-than-missionary position...
Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but to crave all the other things he's making her feel. Soon, their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic...(goodreads)


Plot: The Kiss Quotient was everything that I needed. Helen Hoang wrote an emotional, heartwarming, and incredibly sexy romance novel. Stella and Michael came together with one objective in mind, to help Stella get over her distaste for sex and attract a proper boyfriend to make her mother happy. Of course, one thing led to another and we've got a gender-swapped Pretty Woman situation (yassssss). I can't praise this book enough, it made me laugh, had me near tears, and just had genuine moments that warmed my soul. I'm officially obsessed with Hoang's writing and I can't wait to read her next book.

Characters: Stella had autism which she only felt as a weakness when her mother chastised her for her lack of social skills. She was more comfortable with routine and numbers than attending social events. Michael lived his life to prove that he was nothing like his father. As the only son, he put it on himself to take care of his mother and six sisters and did whatever it took to pay the bills, including escorting once a week even though he hated it. Stella and Michael were complete opposite but the attraction was instant (and hotttt).

Michael's family was a joy and probably some of my favorite chapters. It was those chapters that showed Michael's true self and it felt like a safe space for Stella and Michael. I adored all of their scenes together and how they navigated their differences, especially their misunderstandings regarding the other person. With all great romances, there had to be an external force to keep them apart and that was where our "villain" came in. He made me feel uneasy because there were times that Hoang tried to make him a sympathetic character but he just came across as problematic.

Worldbuilding: There wasn't much to the world that made it stick out to me, but it did feel authentic. Hoang did an astounding job of describing the world through Stella's eyes. The overcrowded clubs felt claustrophobic and panic-inducing and I related to all of her anxiety which made everything seem three dimensional to me.

Short N Sweet: The Kiss Quotient is a book you don't want to sleep on. The hype is real.


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