Tuesday, January 5, 2010
The third funny, sexy, contemporary romance from a fresh new voice in romance fiction.
Rich, the epitome of "anti-domestic," can't cook to save his life, and his idea of cleaning his apartment is to invite his mother over. But he's ready to settle down, and he can't stop thinking about the ex-girlfriend who got away. When he notices that his soon-to-be-married friends cooked and cleaned their way into their women's hearts, he asks his friend Becca to help transform him into a nurturing man to win back his ex.
Rich is the only guy who's taken the time to know Becca for herself. She decides she'll give him the makeover he's asking for, though she'll be damned if she's going to turn him into a domestic god for another woman. She wants Rich for herself, but how can she convince him that her kitchen and her bedroom are the only domestic locales he desires?
After reading this romance and thoroughly enjoying it, I think I'm going to have to dust off that old fondue pot of mine in the basement and put it into good use. There's one particular scene that includes chocolate, a fondue pot and lots of hot lovin' - if you know what I mean. This is par for the course for Robin Kaye, no slouch when it comes to hot anything, and Breakfast in Bed is no exception.
Let me start off by saying, I loved Rich Ronaldi, our story's hero. He is the brother of Rosalie and Annabelle from the previous two books. I was eager to read Rich's story for I liked him immediately when we first meet him in book one of the series, Romeo Romeo. He's a studly Italian from Brooklyn, yet a college psychology professor teaching at Columbia. This gives him an enlightened way of thinking when it comes to relationships and emotions, which comes in very handy when dealing with our heroine, Becca, who is quite a hard nut to crack. Emotionally repressed, she comes from an upscale, uptight Philadelphia Main Line family in which she has a lot of baggage to get rid of. Although the two of them are oil and vinegar on the surface, things click for them, but it takes a lot of nudging and help from their friends and one clairvoyant aunt to help them stay together.
I say 'stay together', because from the beginning, they start out as unlikely roommates - or apartment mates in this case. Thrown together by fate, they find themselves wrapped around each other - nude. In bed. Asleep. Kissing. How can this be? As farfetched as it sounds, due to a mix up, they have to share Annabelle's - and previously, Rosalie's - Brooklyn apartment. What is it about this apartment? It sure gets a lot of action - not to mention marriage proposals! Rich is coming off a broken relationship with his ex-girlfriend, Gina. Can I just say I am so happy Gina ended it with him? I hated the idea of Gina and Rich together! But, for someone as smart as Rich, it takes him a long time to figure out that Gina was all wrong for him in the first place. While waiting for that light bulb to turn on in his head to show him how right Becca is for him instead, he convinces Becca to help turn him into 'relationship material' to get Gina back. What a numbskull! What is 'relationship material' you ask? A domestic god. A guy that can cook and clean and take care of himself. A big boy, a grown up. Not some kid that still needs Mommy to do everything for him.
As the story develops, cranky and uptight Becca begins to relax around Rich, she's a real sour pickle at first, angry and determined to fend for herself in the art world, with no help from Daddy whether it's his family name or money. Rich realizes soon enough what he's dealing with. He's hot for her, but he respects her feelings and is probably one of the few people that wants to really help her succeed on her own as an artist. Unfortunately, this leads to the BIG MISUNDERSTANDING that takes place inevitably in the book. Becca moves out due to the BIG MISUNDERSTANDING and their burgeoning love affair ends abruptly. I had issues with Becca over this and kept on wanting to slap her upside the head and tell her to "get over it!". She never even gave him a chance to explain himself, she just left. I had almost no sympathy for her. Lose a bit of the misplaced pride and open your eyes and see what you've got in front of you. A great guy who loves and wants you.
Still, together they made a sweet couple, which made it all the more heartwrenching when she left him. They had chemistry. Every touch, every sensual moment was electric, exciting - great! There's a touch of irony in the plotline as well. Rich starts out wanting to learn how to be a domestic god to get his old girlfriend back, and ironically, by the end of the book, after Becca moves out, he does it all on his own naturally - out of misery because he's lost her. He becomes a cleaning machine - it relaxes him! What comes comes around, goes around. As all these books point out clearly, a man who cleans and cooks and serves up breakfast in bed is an irresistible force. I lost count of how many times he actually served Becca in bed - who could leave such a guy? He was so adorable doing it too!
This book is chock full of pleasant little surprises too. The side characters are memorable and funny, notably Rich's Aunt Rose and the gay neighbors from upstairs. I also loved Tripod, the three legged cat - and I don't even like cats! The romance is hot and inspirational - remember the fondue pot? The snappy dialogue flows off the pages effortlessly. I can easily hear them all talking as if I'm in the same room with them - the antipasta, the lasagna - pass the garlic bread! Italian cooking abounds throughout - yumm! There are even a few quick and easy recipes I'm definitely trying out, especially the salmon!
Admittedly, it took me a little while to warm up to Becca. Her stubborn streak and unwillingness to hear Rich out and give him the chance to explain himself threw me. But, once she came around and realized what she really wanted and needed to make her happy - namely Rich - it all came together and the happy ever ending more than made up for her lapse. Their reunion made it all worth while and brought tears to my eyes. I knew she'd finally come to her senses - plus, he's a zillion times better than any old B.O.B. 'Nuff said.
Robin Kaye you've written another winner!