Tag: Ally Blake

Review: Blind Dates and Other Disasters by Ally Blake, Fiona Harper, Barbara Hannay.

Posted December 13, 2011 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Rowena’s review of Blind Dates and Other Disasters by Ally Blake, Fiona Harper and Barbara Hannay.

Three easy ways to keep your love life clean and simple …don’t get your friends to fix you up. Party planner Holly can’t find the perfect man – it’s time to turn to her friends to help her out. But after a string of horrific dates, will Jake Lincoln be the man for her? …don’t go on a blind date. Serena wishes she could ignore her unconventional upbringing and settle down with her dream man! So she’s heading out on a blind date. But her date is a man who lives by one rule: never get married! …don’t try your hand at internet dating. Annie is stuck in the Outback without any men for miles. When she meets Damien on an internet chat group, she immediately heads to the city to meet him. Then Theo steps in to take Damien’s place…

Three stories by three different authors about blind dates and other dating disasters. Of course, I wanted to read this.

The first book is by Ally Blake and it’s about Holly Dennison turning to her friends Beth and Ben (the happily married couple) to fix her up with someone because she’s on the husband hunt. Ben tries to fix her up with several different men from his work but there’s only one person that beneath it all, Holly wants and that’s Ben’s boss, Jacob Lincoln.

But Jacob isn’t interested in getting married. He just wants to bang Holly and even though he lusts like crazy for her, he’s not going to marry her and he knows the truth about Holly’s dating adventure. But watching these two bicker their way to that happy ending was too cute for words. I thought it would get old after a few pages but it didn’t. I enjoyed getting to know both Holly and Jacob. I thought they were perfect for each other and the way that they fought their attraction and seeing Holly come to realize that she was head over heels in love with Jacob made this story just so darned cute.

My only complaint was that it was too short, I wanted more (from being the greedy wench that I am) Jacob but other than the shortness of the story, it was a fun way to spend a couple of hours. Kudos to Ally Blake. I’m so itching to read more from her.

Grade: 4.5 out of 5

The second story follows Charles Jacobs and Serena Dove as they make their way to their happy ending. I can’t say that I was a total fan of this book because I just wasn’t. The romance that blossomed between Jacob and Serena felt forced and I hated every time Serena begged Jacob for a little of his affections. You see, Jacob isn’t the marrying kind. He’s just not made that way and after he woos the heck out of Serena, he leaves and tells her that they need to cool things off since it was apparent that she was head over heels for him. He leaves and she tries to move on even though its hard.

Even when Serena finally grows some balls and tells Jacob that she won’t settle for less than it all, I felt like she had done enough begging that anything after that was tainted for me. I just wasn’t comfortable with how needy Serena was in this story.

Jacob was great at seducing women and he may have missed Serena when he went away to New York but he was much too wishy washy for me to truly and completely love him like I usually love heroes. He was a grown ass man and he was still letting his past run his life and usually an author can write that in a way that I would buy it and understand it but with Jacob, I just couldn’t so of course, my enjoyment of the story suffered because of it. I got that he had issues from his past, he thought he was being noble but for the most part, I thought he was just being real stupid.

Overall, this story wasn’t the worst story but it was my least favorite of the three stories in this book. The characters were much to unbelievable and I couldn’t bring myself to like them very much so, that’s that.

Grade: 2.75 out of 5

The final story in this book tells the tale of how Annie and Theo find their happiness with each other. It starts off with Annie eager for her date with Damien, the guy that she’s been getting to know through internet dating. They hit it off and on their first date, Damien stands her up and his uncle is the one that handles the embarrassing phone call letting Annie know that Damien will not be coming. After being stood up, Annie gets pretty trashed with her friends and together, they send Damien a piece of their mind via email and it is once again, Uncle Theo that responds to their email.

Uncle Theo turns out to be a philosophy professor at the college that Annie’s friend attends and he’s hot stuff. All of the students love him and the women students want to bang him so that should tell you just how hot Professor Studly Uncle is. Uncle Theo feels bad because Annie came to town (she’s from deep in the country) for a date and was disappointed when Damien didn’t show up. He feels responsible for Damien and in turn, feels responsible for Annie. So he goes out of his way to make her feel comfortable and before he knows what’s what, he’s full blown attracted to the young woman and wants her for his own.

Annie, on the other hand is just as attracted to Theo as he is to her and their relationship evolves into more than they thought possible.

The story was a delightful story, it wasn’t the best story that I’ve ever read but it was a delightful way to spend some time. Getting to know both Theo and Annie was good but the problems that they went through in this book were kind of unbelievable because the story was too short. The story wasn’t allowed to develop as solidly as I would have liked because it was such a short story but I still enjoyed it.

Theo was a great character, Annie was a great character but Damien’s character (when he finally comes back into the picture) fell kind of flat as did Claudia’s character. I think had this story been a tad longer, their characters would have been able to fully come together and make more sense but their additions to the story felt kind of rushed and so that was where my enjoyment of the story was just a bit tainted. All in all, the story was cute but that’s it, just cute.

Grade: 3 out of 5

Overall, this book provided some great storylines and introduced some great characters. I just wish that I could have gotten more from two of the stories but all in all, it was a delightful treat. Enjoyable way to spend a few hours.

Overall grade: 3.5 out of 5

This book is available from Harlequin UK. You can buy it here.

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