☆••*´¨`*•.☆•• 4.5 stars ☆••*´¨`*•.☆••
I have a history of picking the wrong guy. Gay? Player? Momma’s boy? Check, check and check.
Now I can’t stop fantasizing about one of the customers at the coffee shop I work at between classes. It’s just a harmless crush, right? It’s not like I ever see this guy outside of the coffee shop. It’s not like I’m going to see him while attempting to get birth control at the student clinic. While wearing a paper gown. While sitting on an exam table. Because he’s the doctor. Shoot. Me.
But what if, for once, the man I’ve had the dirtiest, most scandalous fantasies about turned out to be everything but wrong?
Wrong is the debut novella by indie author, Jana Aston. Let me tell you, there is a lot right with Wrong.
I adored main characters Sophie and Luke—individually and as a couple. Luke is a smart, successful, handsome, polite, knows his way around a woman’s body, swoon-worthy sort of man. He is a thoughtful guy who’s actions speak volumes about his character and his feelings toward other people. Virginal Sophie is pretty insecure, and yet, at times, she has a lot of poise for someone so young and inexperienced.
The secondary characters are a mixed bag. Some were developed enough and some were not more than a mention (with and without a solid position in moving the plot along). Jean the sex-crazed dorm roommate is great. She’s a good friend who clearly is more experienced that Sophie. Co-worker and bestie, Everly, is a great friend who I didn’t warm up to. Merideth, Alex, and Bella are part of Luke’s family—Bella is adorable, Meredith is super nice, Alex is barely mentioned. Gina is left mysterious; she appears sophisticated, but her schemes felt beneath her level of social-class, education and sophistication. Dr. & Mrs. Miller—their role is to show the dichotomy of Sophie’s and Luke’s life/upbringing. They’re not supposed to be likable, but it was overplayed a bit in a couple scenes. I would have liked them to have more of a role, and had their agendas built into the plot a bit more to create more tension and angst.
Sophie, a college senior, working as a barista at a local coffee shop gets a weekly thrill serving one particularly hot customer who comes every Tuesday. Many days, it’s the little things, like a special customer, that get you through your work day. Luke, the object of her desires, is an OB/GYN who volunteers at the student clinic every Tuesday. The hilarity begins soon after that opening scene of the book. Dry humor is sprinkled throughout the story; there is just enough humor to make the book fun without it taking over the romance/love story. Ms. Aston has paced her plot well. There is never a point where the story drags or goes off on a tangent. Each scene revealed something about the main characters. I liked that readers (and to some degree the main characters) had to think about what was revealed about a character and how that fit into the story instead of the author “telling” readers what it meant.
Overall, Wrong by Jana Aston is a great first outing by an indie author. I LOVED the humor in the story. I immensely enjoyed Sophie’s first pelvic exam. It will bring back memories for every female reader. I think I might have liked a dual perspective narrative as it would have added depth and forced further development of some character. Luke’s activities would have had to have been explored—many of the secondary characters are related to Luke. That said, being as surprised as Sophie made for a little more angst and surprise for the reader. The dialogue between the main characters was easy and believable. I didn’t like the more banal pet names (a pet peeve of mine and I didn’t think it fit with the character), but most readers won’t care. I would have loved to see Ms. Aston delve a little deeper into Luke’s and Sophie’s relationship. The characters have great sexual chemistry and their overall chemistry could have been explored more outside the bedroom. For example, Sophie tells Luke that she doesn’t understand why he loves her and Luke doesn’t respond. Frankly, as a reader (or Luke’s girlfriend), I want that answer. If Sophie had been a more secure character, I would have expected her to push for answers to all her (readers’) questions instead of letting Luke side step them.
I so look forward to re-reading Wrong, and if Jana Aston publishes another book, I am going to read it!