Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Review: Call Me Irresistible

Call Me Irresistible
Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Contemporary Romance
American's Lady/Book 3
HarperCollins/January 2011

From the inside cover ~

Lucy Jorik is the daughter of a former president of the United States.

Meg Koranda is the offspring of legends.

One of them is about to marry Mr. Irresistible - Ted Beaudine - the favorite son of Wynette, Texas. The other is not happy about it and is determined to save her friend from a mess of heartache.

But even though Meg knows that breaking up her best friend's wedding is the right thing to do, no one else seems to agree. Faster than Lucy can say "I don't," Meg becomes the most hated woman in town - a town she's stuck in with a dead car, an empty wallet, and a very angry bridegroom. Broke, stranded, and without her famous parents at her back, Meg is sure she can survive on her own wits. What's the worst that can happen? Lose her heart to the one and only Mr. Irresistible? Not likely. Not likely at all.

Is it just me or is that cover so very meh? It might be hard to tell, but seeing it in person, the hand looks like a maniquins hand. The the cover as a whole doesn't tell me anything about the story. Good thing the story inside was far better than the cover. :)

If you've read SEP's backlist than you're probably familiar with many of the players in this romantic comedy set in the small Texas town of Wynette. If not, that's okay. There is enough character background given to fill new readers in on the various relationships and histories of the characters.

The heroine, Meg Koranda, is one who starts out lacking in the obvious heroic traits. She's capricious, irresponsible, impulsive, brazen and a bit reckless. For all her faults she is a good friend. She is loyal to her friends and when she loves, she loves deeply. I liked what we saw of Meg in What I Did for Love. While she did exhibited all those traits, she was interesting and I wanted to know more about her. Meg is a work in progress, learning much as she goes. She's flawed, oh boy is she flawed. But I liked that about her. She's very relatable although I do hope I wouldn't make quite so many mistakes if I were in her shoes. When she does screw up, it usually isn't on purpose but more from good intentions or lack of knowledge. She was easily my favorite character of the book.

Ted - Mr. Irresistible, Mr. Mayor, Mr. Brilliant, Mr. God's Gift to Womankind, Mr. Pain-In-The-Ass - is so lacking in flaws it's beyond irritating. He is perfection in the flesh. He is the man who can do no wrong but apparently there is something wrong with him since his fiancée left him at the alter. HA! It took me a very long time to warm up to Ted, years it seemed. I didn't like how he or the majority of the residents of Wynett (aka Tedville) treated Meg. But boy did I love it when Meg made him loose his cool! And sometimes she wasn't even trying!

After the aborted wedding, Meg is stuck in Tedville with no money and no friends. Sure she's irresponsible, terrible with money and has a tendency to call Mom & Dad to help her out. But that's not an option. This time she's on her own. And you know what? She does okay. Not great at first but she does manage. She goes through some really rough times and I liked her all the more for her tenacity. She works at crappy jobs and sleeps in her car she calls the Rustmobile. Those were some emotional scenes - with Meg all alone, desperately needing a friend, a hug, just someone to care about her. She slowly becomes self sufficient and carves out a life for herself in the town that wants her gone. It gets to the point where it's a matter of pride for her to not be driven away.

Ted is one of those that says he wants her gone. He even offers her money. She doesn't take it. So Ted uses other, more dirty tactics to get rid of Meg. His family isn't crazy about Meg either, especially Ted's mother. Ted's problem is that while he wants Meg out of town, he wants Meg. Yeah, poor Ted wants the women who everyone thinks is the reason his fiancée ran out on him. When Ted and Meg do get together it's perfect because Ted is perfect. Meg thinks it's like he read every sex manual ever written and he knows exactly what to do. Except that it's not quite right and Meg can't figure out what the problem is.

The town and it's inhabitants play a major role in Meg and Ted's excellent adventure in romance. They all have their opinions of Meg, nearly all negative. They all adore Ted and are very protective of him. Not a good combination when you've got nosy "well-meaning" people butting into your life. When a potential developer comes to town, without trying, Meg manages to get involved and makes Ted's life that much more complicated. It was the humorous, classic SEP dialogue that I've always enjoyed.

There's is this one thing that kept coming up that I'm still not sure why so much attention was paid to it. It's the detailed description of what everyone is wearing. Seriously, every gathering, outing and nearly anytime a character came on the page, the wardrobe was described from the clothing, shoes, purses and jewelry. At first I thought it was to emphasize the vast differences between Meg's quirky, thrift store fashions and the designer fashions of Ted's family and close friends. There was a twist near the end the had to do with the clothes that Meg bought at the local resale shop but I think the detailed descriptions were overdone.

I did say it took me a long time to warm up to Ted but, eventually I did. While I still think he could have used a smack upside the head early on, I really did like him by the end. He and Meg made the best of couples. A good balance of responsibility and whimsy. Now that Ted and Meg got their HEA it's Lucy's turn next. I'm not sure what she did or where she went when she left the church but I know I'll be reading her story to find out.

Rating: B+

Books in this series ~

Fancy Pants
Lady Be Good
Call Me Irresistible


  1. Interesting, Leslie :) I have no intention to read the book, but I liked reading your review :)

    Seems to me it sucked to be Meg :( Poor girl... where was her friend when she needed one?

  2. Nath ~ Glad you liked the review. LOL

    Man, I felt so bad for Meg. Her friends were far away and she was trying to break the habit of always calling them for help.

  3. Leslie, didn't read your review because I still have this one on the side to read! But I'm so happy to see that B+. I'll come back after I read the book, hopefully soon!

  4. Hils ~ I hope you like it! I had fun reading it, even with some of the frustration I felt towards the hero and the secondary characters. They played well off the heroine. Her I loved!

  5. I saw in my library's latest newsletter that they're getting this one in next week or so. Perhaps I'll add it to my list!

  6. Christine ~ If you've like SEP then I think you'll like this one. And getting from the library means not paying hardcover price!