Strange Bedpersons

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Overview

Tess Newhart knows her ex-boyfriend Nick Jamieson isn't the right guy for her. He's caviar and champagne; she's take-out Chinese pot stickers. He's an uptight Republican lawyer; she was raised in a commune. He wants to get ahead in business; she just wants…him. But there's no way Tess will play second fiddle to his job.

Yet somehow she finds herself agreeing to play his fiancée on a weekend business trip that could make or break Nick's career. And while he's trying to convince ...

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Overview

Tess Newhart knows her ex-boyfriend Nick Jamieson isn't the right guy for her. He's caviar and champagne; she's take-out Chinese pot stickers. He's an uptight Republican lawyer; she was raised in a commune. He wants to get ahead in business; she just wants…him. But there's no way Tess will play second fiddle to his job.

Yet somehow she finds herself agreeing to play his fiancée on a weekend business trip that could make or break Nick's career. And while he's trying to convince Tess that he needs her in his respectable world, Tess is doing her best to keep her opinions to herself and her hands off Nick.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781551667430
  • Publisher: Mira
  • Publication date: 12/1/2003
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 4.26 (w) x 6.68 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

Jennifer  Crusie
Jennifer Crusie is the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, and USA Today bestselling author of Tell Me Lies, Crazy for You, Welcome to Temptation, Faking It, Fast Women, and Bet Me.

Biography

Don't expect to see Fabio's flowing mane on the cover of any of Jennifer Crusie's romance novels. She completely eschews the tradition of overwrought melodrama and heaving bosoms to toss a comic gauntlet into the romantic arena. Her fun, funny, and frisky books are a refreshing breeze in a genre that could easily grow stale.

Former schoolteacher Jennifer Smith got her Master's degree in Professional Writing and Women's Literature at Wright State University. She wrote her thesis on women's roles in mystery fiction before trying her hand at penning romance novels using her grandmother's family name Crusie. Despite her impressive credentials, she dismisses her debut novel Sizzle as "lousy" even as her fans clamber to gets their hands on this long out-of-print pulp romance. "That damn book is following me around the way early porn films follow actresses," so says Crusie one her web site of Sizzle.

No matter what the author thinks of her first effort, the astounding string of critically lauded bestsellers that followed it have firmly established Crusie as one of the very best writers of contemporary romantic fiction. Much of this is due to her sharp wit and ear for comedic dialogue, humor being an element often sorely missing in romance novels. From the sly private dick tale What the Lady Wants to the frantic Faking It, Crusie's books contain the perfect balance of suspense, snickers, and steamy love scenes.

What's more, the author has raked up a slew of awards, as well as spots on "best romance novels of the year" for Anyone But You, Temptation, Fast Women, and Faking It. Getting Rid of Bradley scored Crusie a RWA Rita award for Best Short Contemporary Fiction, and in 1996, she received a career achievement award for her work in the romantic comedy genre from Romantic Times magazine.

Now, after 13 crowd pleasers and award winners, Crusie is offering up her first-ever collaboration. She teamed up with hard-boiled action writer Bob Mayer (Operation Dragon-Sim) to conjure up Don't Look Down, a wacky escapade that is equal parts comedy, adventure, and playful erotica.

In Don't Look Down, movie director Lucy Armstrong goes toe-to-toe and heart-to-heart with J.T. Wilder, a green beret who serves as an advisor on a movie that is taking an unexpected turn from romantic comedy to blow-‘em-up action flick. Publisher's Weekly has declared the joint-effort "good fun," and Crusie reveals on her website that more fun with Mayer is on the way. The team is currently working on their second novel together Agnes and the Hitman.

As for future solo ventures by Crusie, there's plenty more in store. She not only has another release slotted for 2006 -- a sexy yuletide novella titled Hot Toy, which will appear in St. Martin's Press' Santa Baby anthology -- but she currently has no less than five additional projects on the burner. Among these upcoming releases are a collection of short stories and a book that Crusie is particularly qualified to create: a guide to writing women's fiction.

Good To Know

Crusie and Bob Mayer are making things a little easier for guys who want to check out their new collaborative novel Don't Look Down. All you have to do is remove the cutesy dust jacket to reveal a tough-as-nails camouflage cover design and voila! No one will ever know you're enjoying a romantic comedy.

Crusie is the proud owner of three dogs, one of which is named Lucy. Oddly, the main character of Don't look Down is also named Lucy -- and happens to be a director of dog food commercials. Coincidence?

Crusie has a few nonfiction works to her credit, including introductions in Totally Charmed, a collection of essays about Alyssa Milano's cult TV series, and Anne Rice: A Critical Companion, which the author wrote under her given name of Jennifer Smith.

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    1. Hometown:
      Ohio
    1. Date of Birth:
      1949
    2. Place of Birth:
      Ohio
    1. Education:
      B.A., Bowling Green State University, 1973; M.A., Wright State University; Ph.D., Ohio University, 1986

Read an Excerpt

Strange Bedpersons


By Jennifer Crusie

Harlequin Enterprises, Ltd.

Copyright © 2003 Harlequin Enterprises, Ltd.
All right reserved.

ISBN: 1-55166-743-6


Chapter One

When Tess Newhart threw open her apartment door, Nick Jamieson was standing there - tall, dark, successful and suspiciously happy to see her, his pleasantly blunt face a nice human contrast to his perfectly tailored suit. She stared at him warily, fighting down the ridiculous jolt of relief, happiness, and lust that welled up in her just because he was back.

Then he threw his arms wide to hug her.

"Tess!" he said, beaming at her. "You look great!"

Tess looked down at her sagging, bleach-splotched sweats. So much for relief, happiness and lust. She rolled her eyes at him, all her suspicions confirmed. "Right." She slammed the door in his face and shot home both dead bolts.

"Aw, come on, Tess," Nick called through the door. "It's been a month. Actually it's been a month, a week and two days, but who's counting? All right, I'm counting. I miss you. I keep calling but you won't call me back. Is that fair? I think we should talk about this."

"I don't," Tess said firmly to the door, but she ran her fingers through her short red curls. If Nick hadn't had such a large streak of calculating rat running through him, he would have been just what she needed at the moment, instead of the last thing she needed. But there was that streak of rat, and if he was at her door being charming it was because he wanted something. And the something probably wasn't her. It was something to do with money, promotion, status or all of the above. She shook her head and turned back to cross the threadbare gray carpet to her chair and her conversation.

"Who's the wise guy? Your landlord?" Gina DeCosta sprawled on Tess's lumpy couch, her unruly black hair falling into her eyes, her small body lost in a huge black T-shirt, and her legs wrapped in black leggings as tight as Ace bandages. She stretched out tentatively and winced.

"Worse." Tess flopped down into her decrepit armchair, which groaned under her weight, and slung her long legs over the side. "You know, every time I think my life has hit bottom, somebody lowers the bottom."

Nick pounded on the door. "Come on, Tess. Open up."

"Who is that guy?" Gina said.

"Nick, but I don't want to talk about it. Between him and my landlord, I may never open that door again." Tess patted her lap, and a huge black cat jumped into her arms, reclaiming the territory she'd lost when Tess had gone to answer the door. "Sorry, Angela," Tess murmured to the cat.

"Tess?" Nick called. "Come on. Let's be adult about this. Or you can be adult and I'll fake it. Tess?"

Gina frowned at the door. "Why are you ducking Nick?"

"Well." Tess thought for a minute. "It's like this." She stood up, dumping the cat off her lap again.

"I answered the door and he said -" she flung her arms wide and beamed a toothpaste smile at Gina "- Tess, you look great!"

Gina looked at Tess's sweats. "Uh-oh."

"Exactly." Tess flopped back into her chair. "You know, every time I see Nick, my mind looks at him and says, 'Yes, he's fun, but he's also a power-hungry rat, so stay away from him,' and then my body looks at him and says, 'Hello, gorgeous, come to Mama."' She shook her head. "I have to have a long talk with my body."

Gina looked at the sweats again. "I don't think it's gonna listen to you. If you dressed me like that, I wouldn't listen to you."

"Forget the clothes," Tess said. "You're starting to sound like Nick."

"Okay. New topic. Why are you waiting for your landlord?"

"I reported him to the housing commission." Tess smiled, cheered up by the thought.

"Well, that was unfriendly," Gina said. "What did he do?"

"It's what he didn't do." Tess shifted in her chair as she warmed to the story of her landlord's crimes.

"Three apartments in this building have been vandalized in the past two months, and Ray won't even fix the lock on the hall door. Anybody can walk in here. Somebody had to do something." She grinned at Gina. "And, I thought, who better than me?"

"Tess?" Nick called again. "It's not safe out here. If I get mugged because you're playing hard to get, you'll never forgive yourself."

Both women turned to look at the door, and then Gina looked at Tess. Tess shrugged.

"Okay," Gina said, abandoning the subject of Nick. "So you did something. That's no big surprise. I'm just amazed you did something as calm as reporting him."

"Well, I thought about organizing a candlelightvigil protest march," Tess said, starting to grin again.

"I thought all the tenants could light candles and march on Ray's condominium, but this place is such a firetrap I knew we'd never make it to the front door alive, so then I thought about using Bic lighters, instead, but that made me think of Stanley across the hall."

"Stanley?"

"You've never seen Stanley?" Tess's grin widened. "Stanley always wears the same T-shirt and it doesn't cover his tummy, and Stanley's tummy is not attractive. In fact, Stanley's stomach is the only one I've ever seen with a five-o'clock shadow." She frowned at Gina. "Do you suppose he shaves it?"

Gina made a face. "That's gross."

"I think so, too, which is why I couldn't picture Stanley with a Bic. A torch, yes. A Bic, no." Tess smiled again. "But then I thought, why not give Stanley a pitchfork and put him at the head of the march?" She stopped to visualize it. "You know, there's a lot of Quasimodo in Stanley."

"Come on, Tess, cut me a break here," Nick called. "I came back to apologize. Doesn't that count for something?"

Gina raised an eyebrow at Tess, but Tess shook her head, so Gina returned to Stanley. "I don't think Quasimodo had a pitchfork," she said. "He didn't in the movie."

"Anyway, I finally had to get serious before somebody around here got hurt," Tess said. "So I acted like an adult and filed the report."

"Good choice," Gina said. "Getting arrested for pitchforking Ray the landlord would probably have been bad for your career."

"Well, actually my career is sort of dead right now." Tess slumped down in her chair. "I wasn't going to tell you since this is your first night back from the tour and I was looking forward to one night without trauma, but ... I lost my job."

"Oh, no." Gina sat up, her face bleak with sympathy and concern. "What happened?"

"Don't panic," Tess said from the depths of her chair. "I have a plan."

"Sure you do," Gina said. "What happened?"

"Funding cuts. The education governor we elected decided that supporting private-tutoring foundations wasn't educational. So now the Foundation is going to have to only use volunteers. Eventually the whole place may go."

(Continues...)



Excerpted from Strange Bedpersons by Jennifer Crusie Copyright © 2003 by Harlequin Enterprises, Ltd.. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 1289 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 1301 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2008

    Fun

    I have to admit from the start, I'm addicted to Jennifer Crusie's later work. I never really caught on to her series titles however, although I did chuckle a bit as I read. So, could be I'm somewhat biased. You've been warned. Strange Bedpersons isn't a bad book by far. It's witty and it's fun, and there's some excellent banter. Having said that, it doesn't rank with her best. The story and plot are pretty weak. There's nothing too original here, and in fact much of it just doesn't make too much sense. But Crusie herself has acknowledged that she was still learning and developing her gift at this time. And here is a chance to see that brilliant spark of wit and humor at the very beginning.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 15, 2010

    bored to death

    I found myself jumping the book to get it done with. I was so utterly bored, my least favorite story I have read. I wouldn't recommend buying the book without previewing it, but trust me, it isn't getting any better.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    MEH.

    I bought this ebook cause I read the sample and the characters and plot sounded interesting. But that's about it. The "political banter" is superficial and the author basically wasted what could have been a great storyline. Siiigh. No wonder it's 70% off.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 11, 2010

    Jenny Crusie is always readable

    If you like laugh out loud books choose any of Jennifer Crusie books. I have read every one many times they are like old friends. This is one of the earlier ones and if you have not read any of her books yet it is a good place to start - you will soon be collecting them all. I love books that you can read again and again.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 19, 2010

    Least Favorite - very disappointed

    I consider myself a Crusie fan, have rest most of her books. This was my least favorite. The first half of the book is extremely boring - i almost gave up on it altogether. The rest of the book was ok but nothing i would ever recommend to anyone - it was boring and predictable.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 20, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    I'm a Crusie fan but.....

    I really enjoy Jennifer Crusie. I think her female characters are fun and sassy and her male characters usually have at least a little depth to them so you feel they're deserving of the lady's attention. I just really didn't feel this one much. It was ok for a short escape, but just ok. If you're looking for something by her that's better written and lots more fun, try Bet Me.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 23, 2009

    Fun reading

    I love this author and all of her books. This was a book that made me laugh!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 18, 2004

    So Much Fun

    Don't you love reading a book and just having fun while you're doing it? This was a great read...every relationship should have this kind of compromise and every book should be this fun to read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2013

    Cute!

    Loved this book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2013

    Love it

    Nice light reading. Had a little of it all. Romance, banter, mystery, class differences, tasteful sex, overbearing parental figures...etc. Would love to see it turned into a chick flick!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2012

    Dull & One-demensional

    Tess is tacky and self-righteous. She is a rebel without a cause. I wasn't able to visualize any of the characters due to lack of specific details. The plot lacked depth. The sex scenes were lack luster. All in all, the author was unsuccessful in making me care about the characters.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2012

    Great!

    I couldn't put this down. Very good!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2012

    Bleh

    I liked every character in the book, except Tess. She eas a close minded, whiny, immature brat the entire book. I just got tired of her endless complaining about rich people

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2012

    Fast and Easy

    Cute, easy read. Great beach reading.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2012

    Easy read

    This is a easy easy read. With some sex and a litle hint of mystery. Most of the emphasis is on their relationship and how they adapt to each other. It is lighthearted and a relaxing read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2012

    Fun

    Good read, predictable, but its rom com so what do you expect? I like Crusie books because she can be erotic without being gross.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2011

    Fun Read

    I enjoyed this book. I found the political banter to be an interesting element in the book. Plus, the characters evolve throughout the book in a way that has you rootung for them. The plot is not as involved as others but sometimes a lighter book is just what I need.

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  • Posted October 4, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    This was hilarious!

    Why does Tess keep letting him into her life? Even she's not really sure. Yet she just keeps opening the door. As much as she tries to push him away she seems to gravitate towards him. Unfortunately, Nick's only concern is making partner in his law firm.

    I do believe that my favorite character in the book is Nick's secretary. It just doesn't get any better than that!

    It's not a very deep book but something good to read if you just want something funny that doesn't require too much thought.

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  • Posted August 14, 2011

    Cute Little Book

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book! After long hard nights at work, this was a funny, light-hearted read before falling asleep. The grand finale made me laugh out loud! Would make a cute movie too...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2011

    Short and sweet!

    Very quick cute story! Crusie's stories always make me laugh.

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