Saturday, April 4, 2009

Puppy Love by Nancy Krulik

OH MY GOD check out this book's tagline: It's more than just a crush. It's... PUPPY LOVE. No, I don't see how 'puppy love' is appealing either, given we're not in kindergarten, but so it goes.

This book is a very clear example of when the Ro-Coms don't work.

(Sorry I couldn't resist: Back cover tag: Romance can be ruff. Get it? Rough? Ruff? Dogs? Ehhh...)

Alana is seventeen a a dog walker to all these snooty rich people who feed their dogs steak and caviar and filet mignon and champagne. Her other attributes are: a totally flat activist best friend who launches into spiels about how plastic bags are so offensive to the planet, omg, at least twice; a 'hunky handyman' who's interested in her; a douchebag of a boyfriend you can whiff from a mile away; and this one guy who's also a dog walker and also interested in her.

Her boyfriend's only role in this book is expository: he used to be a good guy, but by the time he begins classes in Columbia (Alana is a senior in high school, by the way) which coincidentally is when the book starts, he's this mercenary sycophant who's a prick and we're all supposed to hate him. Yeah, that was fake.

Then the fellow dog walker dude is treated like an afterthought and only as a test to Alana's commitment to whatever other guy she's with. (It's either Douchebag or Hunkster. I can't remember which, though.) All they do is kiss and there's no chemistry and that's resolved. That sucked. (But not for her best friend...oh, to catch a leftover!)

And Hunkster is seemingly perfect - albeit largely boring and not that much of a hunkster at all - but he has a deep dark secret. A deep, dark, dark, dark secret that is bad and the only catalyst in this thing. But even that's exposed, conflicted, and resolved in your usual HEA fashion within ten pages of the end.

Then it ends and it's like, 'Huh'.

Obviously it gets a D. A little bit of editing goes a long way.

Simon Pulse | 288 pages | August 5th, 2008 | GoodReads

25 comments:

Taren said...

That's the dumbest tagline I've ever read. I will never read that book.

I totally remember Nancy Krulik, though! She wrote unauthorized bios of Hanson a million years ago that I totally still have in my closet.

Khy said...

A lot of S&S books have bizarre taglines, I've noticed. Especially these RoComs.

shelburns said...

Thanks for the heads up...not one I'll be seeking out to read!

Steph said...

This is by far the creepiest though.

Carol(ina) said...

Haha I had a feeling you wouldn't like it. Glad that you could semi-snark on it.

Steph said...

Okay, maybe not -- OH MY GOTH by Gena Showalter was 'Kiss my hall pass'. That was truly horrific.

Carol(ina) said...

@Steph oh yeah OH MY GOTH was a very sucky book but that was a MTV book not a Rom-Com.

Khy said...

"Kiss my hall pass"?

I'm starting to think that a post about taglines needs to be done.

-runs off to find odd taglines-

Steph said...

Carol - Khy was talking about S&S taglines and MTV is a part of Pocket, which is an S&S imprint. ;)

Khy - OOOOH MY GOD BRILLIANT IDEA. IMing you cos I have some contributions!

Carol(ina) said...

@Khy yeah you should do a feature on taglines for BEDA

Reverie said...

i'm just speechless. some of these books are just SOOO unappealing to idk who reads them.

Amee said...

Yikes! It seems these Rom-Coms are always either hit or miss with very little middle ground. So far I've only read the good ones! :P

Sadako said...

Ah, sorry it sucks. I'll give it a pass as well.

Diana Dang said...

I never liked Simon's romantic comedies. They always turned out crappy. I think out of all the ones I read, there was one I did not mind. I believe it was Cupidity. It wasn't great but I lived through it more than I did with others.

Reader Rabbit said...

Sounds nasty. I'll not ever pick this one up then.

Elizabeth said...

"your usual HEA fashion"

-- What's that?

Love the snark, by the way.

Steph said...

Happily ever after. And thanks :)

robin_titan said...

It might end up being a better book if it were aimed at maybe twelve year olds or something but then they'd also have to change the protagonists' age.

Ladytink_534 said...

Lol, well at least your review of this stinker was amusing!

Elizabeth said...

--> Thanks for answering on HEA; makes sense!

My dad and I have a thing (it started between him and an equally cynical friend of his) where we call sappy things "BHMs."

It stands for Beautiful Human Moment.

Alea said...

Yeah that just sounds weird... :/

Rebecca Herman said...

I remember this series. I stopped reading them a while back. Now I know why I guess.

Lenore said...

Yuck! Not that I would ever pick up a rom-com anyway...

Jen said...

I actually like bad puns (this an attribute to my Canadianess?)anyhow how could a dog book be so bad.

Great review though ^_^

Melissa Walker said...

Ooh, here's hoping HarperTeen's Beach Reads hit you in a better spot. (Lovestruck Summer)

I often sort of like these books, but I know what you mean about not LOVING them. I honestly think they're for a younger crowd in a way?

And, writers, they're actually SUPER FUN to pen. At least, I had fun.

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