Two Minute Review: The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

Friday, June 8, 2018
Title: The Kiss Quotient
Author: Helen Hoang
Genre: romance
Series: N/A
Pages: 336
Published: June 5 2018
Source: publishers via NetGalley
Rating: 5/5

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...

Wow -- a strong debut and a thoroughly wonderful surprise. This was just absolutely fun and one I didn't want to end though I gobbled it up in two great marathons of utter concentration. Nothing could divert me from Stella and Michael's slow-but-also-not courtship. From the start, it's authentic and engaging and focused on several often ignored perspectives with both sensitivity and care.  

The Kiss Quotient is romance done really well -- it's warm, funny, and the plot is driven by more than just superficial conflict. It's an impressive effort for a debut because the story hardly misses a step. The author may be new but she knows her way around a trope; how to use them, invert them (reverse Pretty Woman!) and how to create sexual tension.

The Kiss Quotient makes for a memorable and heartwarming read; one full of well-drawn characters in an engaging love story that brings the feels and the shipping. A promising debut and easily a full five-star read. It's just plain fun to read. This is one that will be visited again in the near future when I need a guaranteed winner.

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