Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Manhunting by Jennifer Crusie

Manhunting is Crusie's first book and her incredible talent is obvious from the first page.

Kate Svenson is your typical uptight career woman on the fast track but she has one problem. She's lonely. So Kate and her best friend devise a plan. Armed with a detailed list of qualifications for the perfect husband, she sets off for a Kentucky golf resort that is prime hunting ground for eligible bachelors.

Jake Templeton is part owner of the resort and the most laid back hero I've ever come across. A former tax lawyer who has left the rat race behind, Jake is now the resort's handyman. He and Kate meet and immediately decided the other is not what they are looking for. Jake thinks Kate is too driven and too much like his ex-wife. Kate thinks Jake lacks ambition and does not meet any of the requirements on her list.

Of course, Kate's plans to find Mr. Perfect go wrong time after time with one dating disaster after another with scenes that were absolutely hilarious. Her dates end up either falling in the pool, hit over the head or in the emergency room. And none of it was her fault :) I'm not a real fan of slapstick humor in romance because I think it's too visual and most authors lack the writing talent to pull it off. But this book is the exception. Crusie succeeds superbly and I found myself literally laughing out loud (and scaring the crap out of my cat, thank goodness Bob wasn't home). The only other author who can make me laugh like that is Evanovich with her Stephanie Plum books.

This was a completely character driven book with a charming and engaging H/H. My favorite scenes were those that take place out on the lake. Kate invites herself along with Jake when he goes fishing in a leaky old boat. Jake fishes without bait because he is too lazy to actually want to catch anything and uses that time to nap. The sassy dialogue during these scenes practically sparkles off the page. All that banter made delightful sexual tension culminating in some yummy sex scenes. It was a wonderful moment when these two seeming opposites realize they are perfect for each other.

Manhunting is a deliciously delightful book. Although Crusie's inexperience shows with a bit of head hopping, I enjoyed it from the first page to the last. It's very short so I think I finished it in a couple hours. When I found myself re-reading favorite passages, I realized I had a keeper on my hands. It ranks right up there with Anyone But You and Welcome To Temptation.

My grade: A-

13 comments:

Devonna said...

This sounds fun. I haven't had much luck with Crusie, but I do have 4 of her books on my bottomless pit I call my TBR pile. This is one of them. I look forward to reading it.

ReneeW said...

Dev: I had this one languishing in my TBR for at least 3 years. Very fun read.

Marg said...

I really enjoyed this book when I read it!

Kristie (J) said...

I read this one a while ago. It is simply delightful isn't it?? I'm so glad they are rereleasing some of her older books. My copy is the newer released one and I think I actually prefer these ones to her more recent books.

ReneeW said...

Marg & Kristie: Wonderful book. I like the new covers better too. I wish they would re-print all of her old ones. I've been looking for The Cinderella Deal and Trust Me On This for a long time and I don't think they've been reprinted yet.

Nikki said...

This is my favorite early Crusie. I also love "Getting Rid of Bradley" I bought the Cinderella Deal from Ebay for $25.06. It wasn't worth it. Not that good (in my never to be humble opinion). Glad I have it though because I would always wonder and that drives me nuts!

ReneeW said...

Nikki: Wow, that's a bunch of money! I still want it but I keep hoping it will be reprinted along with TMOT. I also liked GROB. I'm determined to read her entire backlist just because I like her writing voice so much.

Nikki said...

What about Sizzle? Has anyone read that? That is the only book that Crusie herself says she doesn't like. It's on ebay every once in a while, but it is very expensive.

ReneeW said...

Oh, I forgot about that one :) I heard somewhere that it's not good so I never put it on my list. I just checked AAR and they gave it a B-. Oh, man, another one I'll probably never find.

Valeen said...

I didn't realize this was her first book.

I had to imagine Jake without his mustache but other than I absolutely adored this book.

ames said...

Someone else recommended this book to me, so now I'm definitely going to have to pick this up. Great review!

ReneeW said...

Valeen: Mustache? I totally missed that thank goodness :)

Ames: Oh, you must find it, it's worth checking out.

Dylan said...

Oh gosh I really liked this book, I reviewed it not too long ago, I'm so glad you enjoyed it!

Yeah I remember Jake had a mustache, It didnt bother me as much as I thought it would.

Love this book! And I enjoyed your review of it too!

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