Saturday Smutty Six: We Really Did LOL featuring covers for I Think I Love You by Christina C. Jones, Frat Wars: King of Thieves by Saxon James, Heidi's Guide to Four Letter Words by Tara Sivec and Andi Arndt, Undead and Unwed by MaryJanice Davidson, Mrs. Martin's Incomparable Adventure by Courtney Milan, and Riley Thorne and the Dead Guy Next Door by Lucy Score

Saturday Smutty Six: We Really Did LOL

We’re wrapping up Rom-Com week here at The Smut Report, so we thought we’d leave you with some comedies that really did make us laugh out loud. And to help us narrow down our options, we chose some books that might be well known in their own distribution circles, but don’t necessarily have the broader distribution of larger publishing house. 

If you’re looking for some laughs with your reading this weekend, might we recommend…

I Think I Might Love You by Christina C. Jones

Look, she meets him when she’s completely wasted after destroying her surprise-married ex’s car and she’s trying to crash at her sister’s apartment, only to discover that her sister has sublet the apartment to someone else. After she’s already let herself in. And the new renter is super naked. And super mad that she just punched him in the eye. Things can only go up from there, right? 

While this book is chock full of situational humor, it’s all about the protagonists being true to themselves. 

Frat Wars: King of Thieves by Saxon James

The tag line for this book is: We’re basically Romeo and Juliet. But dudes. And without all the dying.

And if that’s not the energy of this book in a nutshell, I don’t know what to tell you. Chad and Bailey are in rival frats and, because of Reasons, can’t consort with the enemy. It’s very college-level maturity and shenanigans, but that’s in no small part because Chad is hell-bent on embracing the final throes of his youth. James intentionally wrote Chad to be “such a Chad” who still gets his own HEA with a guy who loves him, pranks and all, so it’s all meant to be fun.

Heidi’s Guide to Four Letter Words by Tara Sivec and Andi Arndt

When Heidi’s mom found out she was working at a studio that records erotic romance and then started taking sex tips from the erotic romance she was reading, I started choking on my own laughter. This book is Minnesota AF, and it’s hilarious. Heidi’s journey to be brave enough to ask out her neighbor—who’s totally into her, she just can’t see it—is full of embarrassing twists and turns that make Heidi want to crawl in a hole and also ultimately gives her a greater sense of community.

Undead and Unwed by MaryJanice Davidson

If unlikable heroines are your jam, I would like to introduce you to Betsy, Vampire Queen. She is selfish, vain, and very very unimpressed with her new role as ruler of the undead—especially since all the other vampires have such bad fashion sense. Think the Shopaholic books, but with vampires. Don’t go in expecting the full HEA here, as this is the first book in a long series about Betsy’s adventures. 

Mrs. Martin’s Incomparable Adventure by Courtney Milan

There’s a scene where Mrs. Martin and Ms. Beauchamps hire some carol singers to follow Mrs. Martin’s Terrible Nephew down the street singing “Robby Bobkins” over and over again to the tune of the Halleleuia chorus from Handel’s “Messiah.” (You’re welcome for the earworm.) There are also shenanigans involving livestock, and a bit where the neighborhood prostitutes collectively agree to no longer service that same Terrible Nephew. Everything about this book is delightful.

Riley Thorn and the Dead Guy Next Door by Lucy Score

This is a duo so far (book 3 is in the works) about a crime fighting couple consisting of a reluctant psychic who lives with a bunch of eccentric old people and her private investigator boyfriend. It’s pretty nuts, like all of Lucy Score’s books, but it’s just a totally fresh and unique situation full of hijinks and absurdity, and if you’re looking for something with a very immersive setting and very little stress, this is just the ticket.

Review, TBR Challenge

TBR Challenge: Fairy Tale

February’s theme prompt for Super Wendy’s #TBRChallenge 2022 was “Fairy Tale.” Here are the books we chose to tackle our TBRs this month.

Holly Read: Haunted by Christina C. Jones (2015)

Eternally Tethered, Book #1

Why was this book on your TBR?

I assume Christina C. Jones must have had a flash sale around the same time Ingrid reviewed Getting Schooled, because I have a bunch of her books all clumped together in my Kindle. (Like a heathen, I only use collections to weed out books I’ve already read.)

Why did you choose this book for this month’s challenge?

The blurb has a dreamy, fairy-tale quality to it.

What are your thoughts on the book?

I loved the first chunk of the book, and genuinely didn’t know where the story was going. Khalida starts having visions of a man with piercing black eyes; then she meets that man. Then she starts having sex with him—or maybe they’re very vivid sex dreams? She can’t tell if they’re really happening, because they’ll abruptly stop, and she’ll be standing in the middle of the room with all her clothes on, like it never happened. Only the hickeys are still there. It’s frankly ominous as hell.

The revelation of what’s going on with Khalida and Aram is pretty interesting, but the denouement felt rushed, as Khalida switches from unsure to absolutely positive it’s love in the space of a memory. I would have liked a little more there, and perhaps a little more mutual understanding between the characters, rather than Khalida simply apologizing for doubting. 

I was also left with a lot of questions about why and how Khalida and Aram ended up in their predicament. However, this is the first book in a trilogy, and it seems that more about the bigger picture will be explained in the subsequent stories.

Buy Now: Amazon

Ingrid Read: Gilded Mess by Colette Rhodes (2021)

Three Bears, Book #1

Why was this book on your TBR?

I personally felt that a Goldilocks and the Three Bears remake involving shifters and polyamory was too intriguing to pass up.

Why did you choose this book for this month’s challenge?

It seemed like it would be a really quick thumbs up or thumbs down—with remakes, I feel like it’s easy to have a pretty fast radar for thoroughness and creativity and I was not wrong here.

What are your thoughts on the book?

This book is bananas. First thing that’s critical to know…it’s a series HEA. So you don’t get it when you finish this book. However, considering the heat level and number of heart-racing scenes, you’ll need a break to continue functioning in society.

The hilarious thing is that the author really leans into the original and it’s fantastic. Ria (Goldilocks) is a very sassy/saucy. Noah, who is Papa Bear (she calls him that!!) is the grumpy to her sunshine. Eli and Seth are more of a pair—one is sweet in the streets but demanding in the sheets, and the other wears his heart on his sleeve and is more of the life of the party.

Was it weird that they’re poly and brothers? Yes. It was. Did the author make the brothers attracted to one another? No. And she does make it make sense—since they’re bears either they all share and stay together or they do the territorial mate thing and can’t. 

It’s a pearl-clutching, décolletage-fanning good time, regardless. 

Buy Now: Amazon

Erin Read: Dithered Hearts by Chace Verity (2019)

Dithered Hearts, Book #1

Why was this book on your TBR?

Around the time we were looking at a lot of retellings, I saw this one promoted as a trans Cinderella retelling, so I snapped it up. Also the cover is interesting.

Why did you choose this book for this month’s challenge?

I don’t have a ton of books that fall into the “fairy tale” category, and I’ve already downloaded this book a couple of times but had to set it aside for other responsibilities, so NOW IS THE TIME.

What are your thoughts on the book?

Cyn is our non-binary Cinderella with a trans fairy godfather who whisks Cyn away to a ball thrown to find a wife for the local prince who doesn’t really want a wife on account of he is gay. At the ball, Cyn learns that her step-sisters, with whom she has not had cordial relationships, are living unhappily with their abusive parents just like Cyn is. Cyn also learns that her step-sisters are both attracted to her at the ball (though they don’t know who she is at that point), so this is also a poly relationship for these NB/F/F step-siblings. Plus we’ve got class divides between Cyn’s poverty-stricken non-noble family and the ostentatiously wealthy nobility we meet at the ball. There’s a lot going on here! And a lot to engage many readers!

I ended up DNFing this one, which bummed me out. I really struggled to engage with the very interesting premise because there were enough technical errors to be distracting, which I sometimes overlook, but also the narrative was heavily front-loaded with info dumps, which on the one hand definitely allow us to understand what’s going on in the kingdom and what the non-noble protagonists value and disdain, but on the other hand were so unsubtle that they ended up pushing me away from the story rather than pulling me into it. 

Buy Now: Amazon

Want to join us in tackling your TBR? March’s theme is “Grumpy.”

Recommended Read, Review

Review: Getting Schooled by Christina C. Jones (2016)

The Wright Brothers, Book 1

Heat Factor: It’s fiery. It’s a slow, steady fire.

Character Chemistry: Sincerely one of the best enemies-to-lovers I’ve read.

Plot: When Reese runs into Jason in the hallway at their university, they immediately set each other off…in more ways than one. AND THEY LOVE IT.

Overall: This book is so deliciously prickly and sexy.

Continue reading “Review: Getting Schooled by Christina C. Jones (2016)”