Series: Book 1 in the ‘Knitting in the City’.
“In every relationship or interaction there are winners and losers. It doesn’t matter if it’s business or family or involvement with opposite sex. Someone always wins; someone always loses.” ~~ Penny Reid (Book: Neanderthal Seeks Human)
I had the pleasant experience reading ‘Rugby’ series by Penny Reid and L H Cosway.
So I thought it’s time to read something that’s not collaboration and found ‘Neanderthal Seeks Human’ in my Kindle library.
The title sounds interesting. So let’s begin the review….
Genre: Chick-lit Romance.
Main Characters: Janie Morris, Quinn Sullivan.
‘Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid’ ~~ Synopsis:
Janie ends up having a terrible day after finding out that her boyfriend cheated on her. As a result, she’s homeless because she’s living with him.
Staying with a cheater is not an option any longer. She’s not just losing her boyfriend, apartment, but her job as well.
The job of a secretary may not be her favorite, but it kept her busy, gainfully employed and stared at Sir Handsome McHotpants whenever she wanted.
Her embarrassing day got even worse when her secret crush escorts her out of the office building. Janie couldn’t believe so much bad luck has fallen on her head in just one day.
She decides to land at her best friend’s apartment and accepts her offer to stay for a while.
Once the housing problem is taken care of Janie starts forming a plan to tackle other ones like:
1: Getting a job.
2: Not getting back with her ex, who’s apologizing and wants to get back together. Even if Janie cannot cut him off from her life instantly, she has no intention of resuming their relationship again.
3: Figuring out the reason why her criminal-mined younger sister wants to visit her.
In the meantime, she keeps running into Sir Handsome McHotpants and finds out that his name is Quinn.
To her surprise, Quinn even offers her a job and it seems he wants to date her.
But there’s a problem. He doesn’t date seriously and Janie doesn’t want to get into a relationship that would go nowhere.
There were only two reasons I chose this book over others. One I mentioned in the beginning and the second one was: apparently it’s a ‘smart romance’.
First of all, I don’t know what dumb romance is or even means. There are only two kinds of romance or a story: a good one and a terrible one.
‘Neanderthal Seeks Human’ falls in between.
I felt conned. As I continued reading the story I found nothing smart about the story or the characters. They are cliché & dime a dozen in fiction.
Jenny has a knack for remembering all kinds of information and she’s a good mathematician. This character is intelligent, but not smart.
I guessed, by smart, the author meant clever, but now I’m wondering if it meant — well-dressed.
Jenny’s character is dumb and exactly like almost all the dumb heroines from Chick-Lit and romance novels out there. A quick-witted character wouldn’t go through life ignoring life, people, situations & obvious signs like Jenny do.
She would have come to the conclusion sooner than later that Quinn wasn’t a security guard. It’s too obvious. Smart people don’t ignore clues right in front of their eyes, smart people also ask questions. She doesn’t. She avoids everything.
She reminded me of Annie from ‘The Hooker & The Hermit’. I liked Annie. But I don’t like a carbon-copy of Annie that is Jenny.
They are almost the same characters with same extreme introversion issues, which go away after meeting the hero.
Quinn’s character isn’t much different than the most billionaire heroes running wild in the fictional world either – controlling, possessive, obsessive & filthy rich.
The hypocrisy of Jenny’s character – she didn’t like all these traits in her ex, but she doesn’t have issues with any of it in Quinn’s case.
I’d like to know what’s so different or smart about it all?
I find not much to complain about in this trope in romance or even Chick-Lit novels most of the time. As most romance novels are not claiming to be ‘a smart romances’ and then not delivering on the promise.
Enough said about the characters, let’s move on to the story. For a quite a few chapters I kept wondering if there’s any story or theme to the madness at all. Because it seems like there isn’t any story.
I didn’t find it funny either, but that’s a whole different matter.
The story slows down in quite a few places and it’s difficult to cut any slack to Jenny for her behavior after a while.
I’m also getting bored with the trope ‘I’m-not-beautiful-but-that’s-not-the-truth’. It would be nice to have a female character who knows she’s beautiful even before the hero lands in the story.
‘Neanderthal Seeks Human’ is a forgettable kind of story and that is not what I was expecting from ‘a smart romance’.
“Lusting after your boss was like having a thing for your English teacher in high-school; it made you more than a little pathetic.” ~~ Penny Reid (Book: Neanderthal Seeks Human)
Hit or Miss: OK.
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