Thursday, September 07, 2006

Just For Kicks by Susan Andersen

Just For Kicks is the followup to Skintight (which I haven't read yet) and was a light and fluffy read.

Carly Jacobsen is a Las Vegas showgirl who rescues stray animals. Wolfgang Jones is the number two in command in the Security Department of the casino where they both work and just happens to be Carly's next door neighbor. As the story begins Carly has sprained her ankle when a little old lady toting a big-ass purse slams into her knocking her off her high heels. Wolf comes to the rescue and offers to give her a ride home. Carly and Wolf can't stand each other. Carly thinks Wolf is an uptight, driven, animal-hater (the worst sin in her opinion). Wolf thinks Carly is flighty, irritating and irresponsible.

Wolf has had a tough upbringing as a child. Because of his father's job, Wolf and his family had to move many, many times in embassies all over the world. He was never able to make close friendships and has issues of acceptance. As an adult Wolf still has almost no friends. But he has a plan... he's going to become head of his own security department, find a nice woman to marry and settle into the perfect life. Even though he thinks Carly is very hot, she is not his type at all. Wolf comes across as very regimented and cold and I found him unlikeable at first. When Wolf's teenage nephew, Niklaus, comes to live with him he is determined to make a good home for him, but Wolf has a very difficult time talking to people about how he feels and causes some misunderstandings with Nik and Carly. I liked Nik and how he schemed to bring Carly and Wolf together. Slowly Wolf loosens up and comes to realize how totally wrong he is about Carly. I enjoyed how her pets seem to adopt him as few humans had. Kind of symbolic and very sweet.

Carly comes across at first as a bit of a ditz. She also had a tough upbringing and has no plans to marry. Carly has a heart of gold and I really liked her. She fosters stray animals from shelters and then trains them to be good pets for others. She volunteers at the local children's hospital and brings her pets to share with the children who are cancer patients and even gives them up for adoption when she feels it's right. One quibble... she liked to call people 'Toots'. Funny the first couple times, after that a bit of an overkill.

This is a character driven story with some fairly good secondary characters. Near the end there is a stalker storyline that seemed sort of tacked on but it wasn't distracting and didn't ruin the fluffiness of the book. JFK had lots of hot steamy sex and was a fun, quick read.

My grade: B


Devonna said...

I think I need to read this. Great review, Renee. I've never read a Susan Anderson book before so I look forward to getting this!

ReneeW said...

I hope you like it. I've read around 7 or 8 other books by Andersen and she's pretty consistently in the B range for me. Plus she writes hot (always a plus).

CindyS said...

Geez, I always seem to get burned by Anderson but your review makes it sound great. Curses!!


nath said...

I agree with Renee's review and I really enjoyed this book :)

Kristie (J) said...

I liked this one and like you said, she is the most consistenlty good autobuy author I have. I've never read one of hers I haven't liked.

ReneeW said...

Cindy: If you generally don't like Andersen then this may not be for you, because I found it typical of her style. But I thought it was pretty good so if you can find it used, I think you might like it.

Nath: Ditto :)

Kristie: Yeah, she's a pretty safe read for me too. I like consistency in an author's work. Not keepers but always good.

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