This book, by Kelly St. John*, broke several big rules. There was no clear antagonist. The majority of the book, the heroine and hero’s relationship doesn’t immediately progress to HEA simply because of verbal misunderstanding and some insecurity and doubt on both parts. And the end? The black moment is based on a huge misunderstanding that the heroine won’t give the hero a chance to explain. It breaks all the rules I’ve read, and yet… it’s a really good book.

I love the characters, I enjoyed watching as they fell harder for one another (since they both basically start with major crushes). Despite the misunderstanding premise, they didn’t spend the whole book fighting to create conflict. Conflict was generated by the two of them falling harder and worrying about the other wanting more than just the five days of sex they agreed to. Oh. And there’s a LOT of sex. Let me put it this way: the heroine has a list of all the wild sexcapades she’s never tried and wants to fulfill with Mr. Right. And they do them all. Graphically.

So, good book, great author who can break the Rules and still give a good read.

*Kelly’s web site no longer seems to be active; instead, I’ve linked to her Goodreads author page.

I finished Ex and the Single Girl.  This isn’t a review in the strictest sense.  I’d never call someone out to condemn work they killed themselves to do.  I’m not downing people who do, reviewers are important to us as readers.  But as a writer, I’m going to respect the work whether I like the book or not.

That out of the way, I loved this book.  When I enjoy a book, I make a point to note what I particularly enjoyed about it, because it gives me more range as a writer.  I loved the friendship between Portia and Ian as it developed.  It was sweet, and God knows Portia needed a friend, but at some point it became this ticking time bomb of sexual tension when you knew they were falling for each other and you kept waiting for them to figure it out.  But done better than I’ve described.

So, my verdict.  Lani Diane Rich=awesome writer.  The book?  But it now.

I just watched this, Saturday night, and I’m still so in LOVE with this story, and the characters–Holly Golightly, I adore you, and you’re crazy yet vulnerable way of living!  Paul!  Fred, Darling, I love that you’re a freaking manwhore and the hero–and you pull it off!

I want to read the book, I want to own the movie (I netflixed it) so that whenever I feel sad, I can watch this movie and make my heart smile again.

So I’m watching movies considered to be some of the most romantic movies for many decades. I’ve watched Gone With the Wind and An Affair to Remember more times than I’ve changed my clothes, almost, so I wanted to start with something new (to me). This is, technically, research for a character, who would’ve been watching these movies at a certain point in her life. But, I thought, if I’m watching some of the best romances ever, why not examine the GMC? Maybe I’ll learn something.

Movie: Sabrina

Hero: Linus

Cold-blooded corporate raider

Internal To be compensated for the life his brother took by being irresponsible. He feels cheated out of life, out of making his own choices, and weighed down by responsibility. His brother continues to be irresponsible David, and he is the one Sabrina loves.
External To complete a billion dollar deal with Tyson Electronics. He’s always been the best. He needs this deal because Tyson has the best television of the future. David, his brother, is ambivalent about marrying Tyson’s daughter and Sabrina is the perfect excuse to cancel the engagement.
Heroine: Sabrina

Transformed chauffeur’s daughter

Internal To fall in love. Sabrina wants David because she has watched him sweep women off their feet; she’s shy, has no self-confidence, and is the chauffeur’s daughter. She doesn’t see herself has lovable. She believes she’s in love with David, but that’s just a fantasy. When she falls in love with Linus, he admits he was just using her to get her out of the way to protect his merger.
External To be seduced by David. Sabrina has been obsessed with David her whole life. His seductions are a symbol of love for her. Linus keeps interfering with her time with David and spending time with her in order to make her fall in love with him and forget David.

Okay, I don’t know if that’s right, and welcome any opinions, but that’s what I took from it. When I first watched it, I couldn’t think of a single thing Sabrina wanted. I wondered if she had a goal at all. In this movie, Linus’ external goal is obvious; it’s his internal goal you have to search for, hidden in the character. With Sabrina, her internal goal isn’t obvious, but it is the ruling one. Her external goal is tied tightly to her external goal. Linus’ is, too, but he doesn’t realize how much of his life he’s missed out on, and how much he resents his brother for that, until he sees his brother living a life he would like.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s is next. I’ll try to have that for next week.

I was reading Mirror Mirror by Gregory Maguire (of Wicked fame).  I don’t know what it is about these stories of his, but he manages to take a story that we know so well, it’s part of our psyche, turn it into something completely different, and yet… the same.  The stories suck you in, and it’s not Snow White you’re reading about, it’s Bianca de Nevada, and her father, and the dwarves–Heartless and Mute, Mute, Mute, to name a couple–and the Borgias (real dead people, Lucrezia being cast as the evil stepmother/witch, jealous of “Snow White’s” beauty).

Anyway, all I can say is: if Gregory Maguire wrote it, you should read it.  Right now.