Startstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails: A Second Acts Novel was a better sophomore offering from Julia Dumont in my humble opinion.
Our busy high class dating service owner, Cynthia Amas, returns as she scores her most famous client yet, former A-list actor, Jack Stone. He presents her biggest challenge, to find him a woman who doesn’t want him because he’s famous. Try as she might to find him the woman he seeks, only she seems to fit the bill. Complicating matters further is another of Cynthia’s old romances, musician Pete Blatt.
Author Dumont flexes her classically trained writing muscles in this book more than her previous offering, Sleeping with Dogs and Other Lovers. Cynthia’s life plays out like a Divine Comedy, complete with many of the cast of characters in book one, to include her mother, her BFF Lolita, and sometimes Friend with Benefits, Max.
The author employs a breakneck wit in this book that was weighed down by the gifted dogs in the first installment. She intersperses a lively plot with love scenes that read like a work of art, not an anatomy class laden with crass smutty words.
This story does what book one didn’t do seamlessly. It imbues the kink with a humor that doesn’t overpower the romance.
I give Starstruck Romance and Other Hollywood Tails 4 out of 5 stars.
If You Like Quirky, Over-the-top Humor With Your Kink – Have At It!
As Cynthia Amas launches “Second Acts,” her matchmaking service in Southern California hoping to do for her friends and clients what she can’t seem to do for herself, her own sex life gets more interesting. She handles the needs of her exclusive clients without a hitch, but can’t seem to navigate her own love life, as her irresistible bad-boy ex comes back into her life. These two have a seven-alarm connection so steamy it jumps off the pages. Juggling the aforementioned might be enough for even a regular gal, but Cynthia also has to thwart her mother’s attempts at meddling in her business. Her first client and new BFF who owns a Beverly Hills dog-grooming salon has her own cadre of elite purebred dogs that have either real or imagined gifts that, although comical, really pulled me out of the story somewhat.
Cynthia’s personal life with her mother, her professional life at “Second Acts”, and amorous life with Max begin to converge and cause all kinds of hilarity that will keep you in stitches. I personally, like a story that can be humorous, amorous, and magical all at once, but I’m not sure if Second Acts: Sleeping With Dogs and Other Lovers pulls this off believably. I think the writer may have wanted to draw some parallel through the metaphor of having the dogs in the story to the behavior we sometimes attribute to men, but the way in which the dogs were used in this story didn’t quite accomplish that.
This is a funny, quirky read for those who like a lot of humor with their kink. If you can suspend belief to get into this steamy contemporary romance, then this book is definitely your cup of tea.
BroadLit via NetGalley provided me with a complimentary copy of the book, Sleeping with Dogs and Other Lovers, for the purpose of review.
I give Second Acts: Sleeping With Dogs and Other Lovers 2.5 our of 5 Stars