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Nerd in Shining Armor

The Nights Before Christmas

Old Enough to Know Better

Pure Temptation

Single in the Saddle

 
Gone With the Nerd
by Vicki Lewis Thompson
(St. Martin’s, $6.99, R) ISBN 0312-99858-9
**
Gone With the Nerd should have a warning label: Stereotypes, rutting beasts and a poorly written mystery enclosed. I struggled to get through this tale after only 50 pages.

Zoe Tarleton is a Hollywood star known for her large breasts and sunny smile. Her movies are basically B movies. She wants to get a more serious role and win an award. She has found a romantic comedy where the heroine is a nerdy scientist trying to save the world with a pill. Her love interest is her bodyguard. But Zoe doesn’t know how to be a nerd; after all, she is glamorous with loads of people helping her and she is interested in clothes and frills. So she asks her contract lawyer, who is the nerdiest guy she knows, to spend the weekend in the California mountains teaching her how to be a nerd and reading through the script with her.

Flynn Granger became a contract lawyer because he didn’t like the limelight of the courtroom. He carries a PDA and drives a Civic despite his wealth. He has a lawyer girlfriend in Boston and he is considering marriage, despite the fact that they have had basically a long distance relationship. He agrees to this tutoring only because Zoe is such a good client.

So they go to a cabin in the woods outside Long Shaft, California, the Bigfoot Capital of the world. Zoe gets help from Margo, a friend from Long Shaft where she grew up, to organize the cabin and keep things quiet. The last thing Zoe wants are reporters knowing where she is and what she is doing. On the way, Margo tells Zoe that there are plenty of sightings of Sasquatch and his family near this rural cabin, causing Zoe some anxiety.

Flynn and Zoe immediately discover they are attracted to each other, even though they never have been before. They are like two bunnies, once they discover that orgasms are fun. (Despite relationships, neither has been very sexually active). Needless to say, plenty of action happens at the cabin – there is Bigfoot, neighbor kids who keep popping up with weird stories, dangerous bees, and even a tree falling on the cabin. It begins to looks suspicious – could someone be out to hurt Zoe?

The entire book occurs in a Friday-to-Sunday timeframe. They go from business acquaintances to lust to love in just that short of a time. The action of the “accidents” occurs in between bouts of sex. If the sex is not between Zoe and Flynn, then the scenes from the screenplay are read and they are primarily either sexual foreplay or love scenes, which usually then prompt Zoe and Flynn to give in to their feelings of lust.

I wish I had some good things to say about this book. But it read like one big sexual scene with a few odd moments thrown in. The odd moments are even silly. The first night, Zoe discovers a mouse in the kitchen. They don’t want to kill it and they are both scared of it. So they lay out cheese in a line from the couch (where the mouse is hiding) to the open front door. They then sit and drink wine waiting for the mouse to follow the trail. And he does – the book lost me right there. It got worse when the two characters started an idiotic inner musing while making love. This was not hot or anywhere close to erotic.

Flynn, who doesn’t seem like much of a nerd other than he is organized, believes there might really be a Bigfoot and is not flashy. Yet he allows himself to be categorized by Zoe, who at times seems like an airhead. She is pretty self-centered and this trait is not endearing. Then he finds himself attracted and thinks it is love in less than 72 hours. Zoe states she hasn’t had a serious relationship in a long time, despite the publicity. She says they were all just for the cameras. Now she is in close quarters with a man she thinks is a nerd and suddenly her libido goes into overdrive?

The villain is obvious and the reasons for the threats are rather ludicrous. Avoid this tale of nerds, Bigfoots and sex. Gone With the Nerd just needs to go.

--Shirley Lyons


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