Genre: Fiction/Contemporary Romance Novel | Publication Date: June 2015 | Date Finished: 27 September 2018
Snatch that glass of wine, pick your merlot and maybe some cheese because, Oh boy! I assure you, the moment you open this book, it’s gonna be an all-nighter! And I think that it’s really best to read it in the evening because it’s romantic, sexy & steamy!
Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases–a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.
It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice–with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan–from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…
Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but to crave all the other things he’s making her feel. Soon, their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…
IN A NUTSHELL…
Stella Lane is a successful econometrician in her 30s. She’s focused, efficient and she’s single with a mother who keeps bugging her to date. She also has Asperger’s but only her family knows about it. It’s not that she’s not interested in men, in fact, she went on dates in the past but she’s got intimacy issues. Stella is not a virgin, but she’s not great in bed either. And now she’s on a mission to be improve herself on the dating department. And so she got help from the experts! She hired a male escort.
Enter MICHAEL PHAN
Okay, magkapit-kapit kamay tayong lahat at kumalma…haha! This photo is for everyone’s reference because according to the book, Michael is like 80% Daniel Henney. But Michael is a Vietnamese-Swedish guy with an athletic built.
Michael Phan is the male escort with demigod vibes that Stella booked thru a site. He’s great with his job but he’s got too many issues going on in his personal life, plus that load of anger he got for his father.
That night when they met for the scheduled date, things unfold and Stella admitted her mission for booking him and it caught his attention. At first, he can’t grasp why she needs to learn about intimacy the way she wants to be taught. She looked pretty normal to him. She’s very shy and timid, sure, but perfect. After spending their first sexless night together, they had an agreement for 3 more sessions that later on turned into longer (paid) engagements. And this is the part where I’m gonna stop. 😉 Read the book, damn it! 🙂
T H O U G H T S
This is the second book that I read, with a lead character that has Asperger’s. The first one was Don Tillman from The Rosie Project (another favourite read of mine) and today, I met Stella Lane. This is one of the many reasons why I love reading. Books & novels can open up knowledge on different things like this. As I read on, I found myself searching the internet about autism & Asperger Syndrome. All the while, I thought they were very different but I learned that they were on the same spectrum. Admit it or not, AUTISM may sound worse than Asperger’s.
Admit it or not, AUTISM may sound worse than Asperger’s.
Yung Asperger’s kasi, tunog mayaman, ‘di ba? Sakit ng sosyal. Pero kapag sinabing autism abnormal agad-agad! And with that, I want to sincerely apologise for my lack of knowledge.
The Rosie Project meets Pretty Woman meets The Wedding Date Movie
Yes, this novel is like a good mix of these three, and it worked perfectly. Honestly, I already had my expectations but I’m glad they turned way better than what I had in mind. I admit, that party scene was one of the expected clichés but it had a good twist. Curious already, huh? 😉
Asians represent! But more than anything, I love that this novel illustrated the strong family bond that we have as Asians. The love & care for the family and our parents and it’s true that at times, these things can hinder us from the things that we really want in life.
Just like when I was reading the Crazy Rich Asian, reading this made me crave for some Vietnamese cuisine! Mouthwatering, grabe!
My kilig (romantic excitement) for this book is more of the sweet & sexy, unlike with Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating story which is the type of kilig that’s funny, a bit silly & sexy. I honestly had to calm myself down because I can’t stop my (noisy) silly grins and laughs while reading. I’m basically mooning over the characters and there were a few times that I woke my husband because of the kilig noise that I made.
cue Earned It by The Weekend…
Oh. My. God. Hawt! hawt! hawt! Napakagat-labi ako, besh! Seriously, one of the sexiest books I’ve read to date! Or must be the sexiest book I’ve read!
I loved Michael’s character revelation. His real job and all. I didn’t see that coming! Galeng!
Strong Women POV
I love the presentation of the women’s point of view on this novel. They are not perfect but they have the reasoning of the modern woman. It’s the 21st century and if we cry for equality, men shouldn’t be threatened with women earning more. Right?
- Yung nanay ni Stella mas alam pa ang Tinder kesa sa anak niya! Ann is the perfect illustration that mothers are designed by nature to be pushy and without edit buttons
...mothers are designed by nature to be pushy and no edit buttons
- You know that there’s something wrong with our lead character when she almost threw up after seeing Michael Phan for the first time because he looked like an actor straight from a Korean Drama. 🤣 Yes, there is such thing as obscenely handsome, or in Tagalog, nakakasukang kagwapuhan. Sobrang gandang lalaki niya, hindi kakayanin ng katawang-lupa mo – to that effect.
- As we all know, Stella Lane speaks her mind and it was really funny when she kinda questioned his 8-pack abs! 🤣 It was like, “di’ba pwedeng 6-pack lang? kailangan talaga walo?” Lol
- The part when Michael found out that Stella LOVED him. It reminded me of that Ross-Rachel scene from FRIENDS when Ross found out that Rachel is trying to get over Ross.
And lastly, my favourite moment was when I read the Author’s Note.
Those 3 meaningful pages that touched me as a reader and yes, Stella Lane became one of my well-loved heroines and Helen Hoang is now one of my favourite authors.
This book is one of my favourite reads this year. So what are you waiting for?! Get it! Read it! NOW! 🙂
About the Author
Helen Hoang is that shy person who never talks. Until she does. And the worst things fly out of her mouth. She read her first romance novel in eighth grade and has been addicted ever since. In 2016, she was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in line with what was previously known as Asperger’s Syndrome. Her journey inspired THE KISS QUOTIENT. She currently lives in San Diego, California with her husband, two kids, and pet fish.
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