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Book Review: The Kiss Quotient

Phew! The past week has been extremely busy with work transitioning out of the pandemic, but here I am to review Helen Hoang’s The Kiss Quotient!

Steam

I got attracted to this book from @twentycharm bookstagram account in which she mentioned there was a lot of smut in The Kiss Quotient. I do love my steamy romances so that’s precisely why I wanted to get my hands on this. Having said that, since I do read straight up smut (Recommended: Katee Robert!) I actually think the scenes in The Kiss Quotient are quite mild. The amount also balances out quite well with the plot and characters, in my opinion. Which is to say I would have loved more but that probably won’t be the same for the general reader.

Plot

Helen Hoang mentions it in the Author’s Note, The Kiss Quotient is essentially a gender reverse of My Fair Lady. The gal Stella Lane is hecka rich and the guy Michael Phan is struggling with money and bills. A premise like this always makes for a fun poke into society, especially when it’s the female party that has more wealth. It takes a secure guy indeed to go into this kind of relationship and that was definitely part of Michael’s character growth, which I really liked.

Stella Lane

What really cool character! She’s got it almost all going for her: brilliant mind, high paying job, good-looking. She has flaws, mainly from her insecurity of being on the spectrum, which I imagine must be something totally relatable for readers that are autistic. Her character growth to embrace herself completely and face life with healthy attitudes is an empowering journey. Oh and of course, bonus points for her playing the piano 😀

Series

The Kiss Quotient is the first of a trilogy of romance books featuring autistic characters. The books can be read out of order since the plots are only loosely connected to each other. Coincidentally I read The Heart Principle first and it’s not as comedic and fun as The Kiss Quotient, but in my opinion it’s more romantic.

I can’t say enough about how much I appreciate authors like Helen Hoang who are spreading more awareness on matters that they really care about, and in such a lovely yet vulnerable way. The whole series is a 5 star read!

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Book Review: The Love Hypothesis

The Love Hypothesis book is such a sensation on booktok! It comes up in my feed at least once a day. Which is a good thing. When the tide rises, everyone benefits – in this case when people start to get into romantic comedies with women in STEM protagonists…now that is COOL. My review does have SPOILERS so beware!

I just love that the author herself is a scientist. In fact Ali Hazelwood has a PhD and is a neuroscientist professor. That’s what I’m talking about! Women can rise as high as we let ourselves be. We can encompass as many different fields as we want. Life is too short to downplay ourselves so GO TAKE THAT SHOT.

That aside my thoughts for this book is like almost everyone else’s. It’s cute, sweet, and I definitely couldn’t put it down. The hype is real, unless you hate the fake-dating trope then well, maybe pick up something tragic. Like Romeo and Juliet-sorry I just watched the new West Side Story directed by Steven Spielberg and am all tragic-ked up. Anyway in order to make this not just another book review about The Love Hypothesis, let me try to take a different angle.

One Thing I Wished Was Different

There is just one thing that I kind of wish could have been different about this book. In the part where Tom sexually harassed Olive, she was able to overcome the issue because of an accident. Olive accidentally recorded the harassment on her phone. Then she accidentally played the recording for her friends, which is how they found out. Thus she accidentally has proof.

Then, she goes to Adam, who luckily is an awesome guy (we all love Adam). He takes care of the problem for Olive. Sweet. Really, it’s melting. But sadly, more often is the case where survivors don’t have proof at all. Because of that, they get even more abused. And even more often still is the case where survivors tell their loved ones, but even with proof their loved ones blame them. Victim blaming.

So instead of getting comfort and help, survivors often get shamed on even more. I know this from my own experience, and from my work as an activist in sexual harassment campaigns in Indonesia. So if it could be different, I wished Olive had intentionally spoken up, and then have Adam help her take care of the problem, instead of letting Adam simply take care of it for her. Because then, Olive wouldn’t just be sweet, she would also be kick-ass.

All in all though, I really enjoyed this rom-com and will be opening myself up to the genre more.