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~Bet Me~

by Jennifer Crusie

Heroine: voluptuous


      Actuary Minerva Dobbs is short a date for her sister's wedding, thanks to her no-good low-down boyfriend dumping her at just the wrong time, all because she wouldn't fall into bed with him.  Her erstwhile almost-lover then bets notorious womanizer Calvin Morrissey $10,000 that Cal can't charm her into bed within a month.  But beware a woman scorned!  Min's onto their scheme and figures she can string handsome Cal along and get a meal or two, a date for that darn wedding, and the last laugh out of their little game. 


      Trouble is, her heart, or at least her loins, tell her she wants this guy for real, but her so-sensible mind points out that nice "white-cotton-panty-and-bra-set" girls do not--can not--keep this kind of Adonis for life.  And wager aside, the odds are stacked against their making it in the long term:  He's beautiful; she's not. He's all charm, she's no-nonsense. He's triple fudge, she's plain vanilla. And don't even get them started on which Elvis is better.


       But will common sense win out over their hearts' desires?  Don't bet on it.     


What worked for me:


           I thought this story was sweet and funny and felt like a Meg Ryan movie.  And while some readers might feel like the plot was contrived in spots, I myself was fine with that for the most part.  After all, keeping the hero and heroine out of each other's arms only raises the stakes and the tension.


         I, too, know the heartache of trying and failing to make Chicken Marsala "heart smart". Just can't be done.


         I don't want to give it away, but the epilogue made this particular curvy gal smile. It was perfect for the reader who requires her story be tied up in a neat little package with a perfect bow.


          Size-wise Min is very voluptuous, like an old 50s pinup and then some. I love that Cal loved her curves and stood up for her, reassuring Min that she could both be beautiful and eat bread and butter.


What didn't work for me:


          I was so hungry after reading this book!


          What parents these people had.  Poor Cal and Min! I wasn't entirely sold on all of their friends, either.


           I didn't mind it, but some folks who are looking for a story along the lines of "Welcome to Temptation" might find most of this one too tame for them.  Still, stick it out.  It gets rather interesting at the end.



          "Bet Me" is just begging for a production company to take a gamble on it and make it into a movie.  (I wonder if Drew Barrymore or Christina Ricci is available for the lead?)

Warning: This book contains coarse words, sexual scenarios, and references to lesbianism.

If you liked "Bet Me" you might also enjoy "Love at Large", "Crazy For You", "Dating Dead Men", "Some Girls Do", "Heaven in Your Eyes""Fast Women", "Name Dropping", "Welcome to Temptation", "Faking It", "Switcheroo", "Plum Girl", "Infernal Affairs", or "Princess Charming".

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