Author: Helen Hoang

Summer Reading Challenge Review: The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

Posted September 13, 2018 by Holly in Reviews | 10 Comments

Summer Reading Challenge Review: The Kiss Quotient by Helen HoangReviewer: Holly
The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: June 5, 2018
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 336
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
four-half-stars

A heartwarming and refreshing debut novel that proves one thing: there's not enough data in the world to predict what will make your heart tick.

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...

The Kiss Quotient was released earlier this year to much fanfare. Everywhere I turn people are talking about it. Rowena read it a while back and raved about it. She even made it part of our Summer Reading Challenge, so I’d be forced to read it. Still, I went into it with some trepidation. I don’t always love the books everyone else loves. In this case, I’m happy to report the overwhelming majority is right…TKQ is a wonderful, sweet, often intense romance that really worked for me.

Stella Lane’s mother wants grandchildren, and she wants them now. Though Stella has tried, she just can’t seem to make a relationship – or sex – work. She has Asperger’s, which doesn’t help matters. She uses her extra focus and intensity to her advantage in her profession, but in her personal life it holds her back. She can’t seem to make connections or personal attachments. She decides what she needs is a professional. Someone to teach her how to enjoy sex and relationships. She feels comfortable with Michael, so she asks if she can hire him.

Michael Phan is working as an escort to make extra money to help cover his mother’s medical bills. One night each week he meets a different woman and gives her whatever fantasy she needs. He doesn’t love it, but his family really needs the money. He never does repeats with clients, but when Stella asks if she can hire him to teach her how to like sex, he’s really intrigued. For the first time in a long time, he’s actually attracted to a client..and not just how sexy she is. She’s funny, sweet and so blunt he always knows where he stands with her. Although it goes against all his personal rules, he agrees to teach her everything she needs to know.

If you’d asked me prior to reading this book if I thought I’d enjoy a reverse Pretty Woman novel, I’d have said no. I’d have been wrong. This was such a sweet, lovely story. I think all of us can identify a bit with Stella. Her passion and drive, her intensity, her anger and frustration over her own limitations..we’ve all been there. There were several times her struggles brought me to tears. Especially when she unintentionally embarrassed herself by saying or doing the wrong thing, then not understanding why everyone was so upset. She was different, but she wanted to be treated as if she weren’t. I loved how well written her Asperger’s was, and how relatable she was a woman, even though she was so different than me.

I thought I’d have a problem with Michael being a male escort, but I didn’t. Stella was so matter of fact about it, and he was, too, the whole thing was easy to accept. That’s not to say I didn’t feel for him the few times he was out with Stella and his other clients recognized him, but that was such a small part of who he was. He was a loving son and big brother. The responsible one in his family who gave up a career for the good of them. I couldn’t help but love him.

There were times the story moved a bit slow for me, and I got a bit frustrated with the both of them toward the end, but overall this was such a sweet, wonderful read I couldn’t help but love it. With a diverse cast, super intelligent heroine, kind hero and strong plot, The Kiss Quotient really offers it all.

4.25 out of 5

four-half-stars


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Review: The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

Posted June 27, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 8 Comments

Review: The Kiss Quotient by Helen HoangReviewer: Rowena
The Kiss Quotient (The Kiss Quotient, #1) by Helen Hoang
Series: The Kiss Quotient #1
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: June 5, 2018
Point-of-View: Third Person
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 336
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
five-stars

A heartwarming and refreshing debut novel that proves one thing: there's not enough data in the world to predict what will make your heart tick.

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...

The Kiss Quotient kicks off newcomer Helen Hoang’s The Kiss Quotient series and it features a high functioning autistic heroine and the male escort that falls madly in love with her.

The book starts off with our heroine, Stella Lane, having dinner with her parents and her Mom mentioning the fact that she would like grandchildren soon so that has Stella thinking. When a colleague at work brings up her lack of successful dating, Stella figures she needs to hire someone to teach her how to be good at having sex. Stella has Asperger’s and that makes things hard for her because her mind won’t turn off and she says the wrong thing and her partner always gets turned off and so she’s learned some things to get through sex but she doesn’t ever enjoy it herself. She needs professional help and that is when we meet my boo thang, Michael Phan.

Michael Phan is a dead ringer for Daniel Henney, much to his chagrin but it’s helped him in his undercover gig as a male escort so he can’t complain too much. He’s got his reasons for the way that his life turned out and while he doesn’t have regrets, he sometimes has them. He holds himself to a set of rules, a code of ethics, if you will that keeps his professional and his personal life separate. All of those rules seem to have gone right out the window with his latest client, Stella Lane because he’s breaking rules left and right.

Stella hires Michael to help her be more comfortable with sex…only, their first night together, they don’t get past second base so plans change and before either of them know what’s what, Michael and Stella are teaching each other all about love and intimacy. Stella can’t help her personality any more than Michael can help his financial situation. The more time that they spend together, the more they have to fight from falling in love with each other. Stella doesn’t think anyone would love her and all of her quirks while Michael feels the shame of his secret life-threatening to overwhelm the ever living shit out of him.

I loved the heck out of this story. I loved Stella. I loved Michael. I loved both of their families and I seriously could not get enough. I know that I love a story when I keep texting Holly in between scenes, explaining to her in detail why I’m loving the book so much. I texted Holly a lot while reading this book.

I loved Hoang’s writing style. I thought that the way she wrote Stella’s character, her struggles with being autistic and just the way that her personality was, it felt authentic and it was written in a way that I completely got what Stella was going through, what she was thinking and I just got it. I really, really loved Stella and how her moral compass was planted firmly in what she thought was right. I loved seeing her love Michael and I loved whenever she changed the plan because when she secretly changed the plan to seduce Michael, my heart sighed ever so happily. She was just a freaking great heroine that I loved oh so much.

Stella made the book fantastic but the addition of Michael Phan? OMG. I completely adored him. His devotion to his family, to his cousins, to his Mom’s business and just everything. The wealth of love coming from this man had me from the jump. I loved seeing him fall in love with Stella. From his confusion over what was happening to his crush and then to him realizing he was in love with her? OMG, so stinkin’ good.

For me, this book was a complete romance. I enjoyed every single minute of this book and I’m super anxious for the next book to come out. Helen Hoang did so well with this book and seriously, if you’ve been on the fence about reading this book, don’t be. You have no reason to fear you won’t enjoy this book. I have every confidence that you’ll love it.

Grade: 5 out of 5

The Kiss Quotient

five-stars


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