In brief: Sam’s life is in a mess and her eggs are muttering urgently. Could some time out working in a romance bookshop fix things, even though Nick is definitely not her type?
The good: It’s funny, loads of fun and a fantastic read. Plus there’s lamingtons.
The not-so-good: I would like more please (and more lamingtons).
Why I chose it: Thank you to Escape Publishing for the eARC – I hadn’t got around to try Amy Andrews’ books previously, but now I know I need to rapidly catch up!
Pages: 257 (eARC)
Publisher: Escape Publishing
Setting: Brisbane, Australia
My rating: 10 out of 10
Amy Andrews is one of the authors on my ‘must try’ list – so many people within my social media spectrum reckon her writing is awesome – but I’d never got around to it. After kicking myself thoroughly for waiting so long, I’d suggest that you jump into reading Risky Business quick-sticks if you enjoy witty romantic comedies with great characters, loads of sexual tension and of course, a happily ever after. There are many nods to popular rom-coms like Sleepless in Seattle and When Harry Met Sally and more than enough Hugh Jackman references to keep you happy.
The heroine in Risky Business is Samantha – she’s a stressed out accountant who has woken up to find herself blocked on the corporate ladder by the boss’s nephew. Sam knows that he’s useless and unworthy, but unfortunately the boss thinks otherwise. Suddenly the corner office may not be here – and what’s the point anyway? Sam’s eggs are beginning to chirp desperately for some sperm company and in a fit, quits for a job at a second-hand romance bookstore. Birdie’s has always been salvation amongst pirate romances for Sam, but now that grandson Nick has taken it over, could it be a place for…romance? Nick’s an adventure junkie, biding time before climbing Everest. He’s not the kind of man Sam’s eggs want…really…maybe…kinda.
I loved the setting of Risky Business amongst the bookshelves – not only does it give Nick and Sam a lot of chances for conversation amongst the shelves, but we get to meet a variety of secondary characters as well, who are both funny and sweet. The bookshop also allows a quiet place for Sam and Nick to have some really deep and meaningful discussions, as well as develop a strong friendship (the best basis for a romantic relationship according to my father). Plus, because Nick and Sam really can’t get too far away from each other, there’s a lot of teasing and funny moments. A lot of teasing centres around Sam’s eggs (Nick knows that they’re squealing for attention) and the disastrous blind dates she goes on in an attempt to find ‘The One’. The characters Andrews makes up are amazing – I will never look at a plastic surgeon again without appraising his teeth!
There are a lot of hilarious scenes that will have you giggling as Nick casually springs Sam buying a vibrator and Sam’s condom shopping expedition. In contrast, there are some seriously sweet moments that show the caring side of Nick as he attempts to make Sam feel better about her body. Sam rejects him several times, but his perseverance is what really sold him for me. Not only is he a gorgeous Hugh Jackman lookalike, he’s a lovely bloke underneath who is willing to stand by Sam no matter what. I felt the length of time that it took for Sam to realise that was just right – it wasn’t too drawn out or too quick. The ending was sweet, but not over the top and keeping in line with the quirks of the characters. I could easily see Risky Business being a great movie.
Aside from the romance, there was a continuing thread about lamingtons which had me craving them and a subplot involving the tearoom that makes the lamingtons. Add to that a friend of Sam’s wanting more and Nick’s fondness for Westerns and you’ve got a winner. The setting of Brisbane was beautifully rendered (made me want to visit again) and the conversation cracking.
A wonderfully funny story!