The Barnes & Noble Review
Bestselling authors Jennifer Crusie and Bob Mayer scramble their usual genres -- romantic comedy and action thrillers, respectively -- into one tasty omelet, seasoned with plenty of sex, romance, action, and danger.
Movie director Lucy Armstrong and Green Beret captain J. T. Wilder don't exactly get along at their first meeting on the set of the movie Don't Look Down. Lucy, a director of dog food commercials in New York, has come to the Savannah swamps to finish up the last four days of shooting -- only to discover that her ex-husband is the stunt director, her sister seems to be on drugs, and the stars are nutty egotists. Lucy chalks this up to the usual movie production chaos; then the script for this so-called romantic comedy takes a mysterious and abrupt right turn into action-adventure land -- complete with helicopters, Navy SEALs, and exploding cars! To complicate things further, the CIA contacts J.T. and lets him in on a secret: A terrorist with the Russian Mob is using the movie as a money-laundering scheme and clearly has his own reasons for the script change. Then the body count starts to rise...
We won't give away the rest of the plot, but the character of Lucy's five-year-old niece, Pepper, is terrific, and the dynamics between Lucy and Wilder are thoroughly enjoyable. Ginger Curwen
The pairing of readers Lawlor and Raudman misses more than it hits in this uneven audiobook. Lucy Armstrong, a director of dog food commercials, accepts the job of helming the last four days of an action-adventure movie. Before she has a chance to spend time with her sister, Daisy, who is also working on the film, Lucy is soon embroiled in a real-life adventure involving money laundering, kidnapping, the Russian mob, a one-eyed alligator and a most unexpected romance. In theory, the idea of having two readers portraying the male and female characters of a novel, as well as rotating chapters to correspond with the book's alternating viewpoints, would seem like a good one. Unfortunately, the audio suffers from poor production values. Raudman gives a rich, intimate sound to her reading, but Lawlor seems to be stuck in the next room for his, thus destroying any attempt at realistic dialogue between the characters. The book itself is a fun bit of fluff, and each reader individually gives a fine performance, but the contrast in sound quality and acting styles proves more distracting than effective. Simultaneous release with the St. Martin's Press hardcover. (Reviews, Feb. 27). (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Noted romance/chick-lit author Crusie (Bet Me) and adventure author Mayer (Z: A Dave Reilly Novel) team up with mixed results in this not-really-a-romance, not-really-a-thriller offering. Sensible film director Lucy is recruited to finish up a movie shoot and encounters hard-living Green Beret J.T. Wilder. The one thing they have in common is that neither of them really wants to be there. Lucy is miserable dealing with her ex-husband, the stunt coordinator for the film, and J.T., who has been hired as an advisor, ends up baby-sitting a wannabe action star. The whole production is shrouded in mystery, right down to its sources of financing (turns out it's a money-laundering scheme for a terrorism supporter). Romantic intrigue among cast members, bumbling CIA agents, a swamp sniper, and Lucy's family problems round out a detailed and often overly busy plot. While the writing is seamless, fans of Crusie will miss her usually snappy style and steamy love scenes. Still, her name alone is bound to generate demand. For most public libraries. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Mayer and the usually irresistible Crusie (Bet Me, 2004, etc.) stumble in this romantic action film of a novel about a woman trying to direct a romantic action film set near Savannah, Ga. After the previous director succumbs to a heart attack, Lucy Armstrong agrees to direct for the shoot's last four days the movie on which her ex-husband Conner is stunt coordinator, mainly because she wants to spend time with her sister Daisy, also working on the movie, and five-year-old niece Pepper. Lucy is worried about Daisy, who seems drugged out, and Pepper, who seems lonely (and unbearably, unbelievably precocious). Lucy learns from her assistant that an action ending has been tacked on to the romantic comedy. Although the ending, requiring dangerous stunts, makes no sense, she is pressured by the movie's mysterious Irish backer Finnegan to finish filming. Meanwhile, Conner says he wants to get back together, but Lucy-wisely-no longer trusts him and finds herself more attracted to the leading actor's new stunt double, a Special Forces macho warrior named J.T. Wilder. Lucy does not know that J.T. has been assigned by the CIA to track down Finnegan and the Russian mobster to whom he owes 50 million dollars' worth of Mexican phallic sculptures. J.T. wins Pepper's heart when he gives her a Wonder Woman Doll. It doesn't take him much more to win over Lucy, with whom he's soon having torrid sex. Meanwhile, scary things are happening that may or may not be accidents. Throw in a one-eyed pregnant alligator and a sniper sharing the nearby swamp and the danger quotient rises, especially when Pepper is kidnapped. Despite plenty of blood-and-guts violence, there's not much mystery to pull the reader along.Oddly wimpy and not much fun.
“This first collaboration between bestselling romance writer Crusie and adventure-thriller writer Mayer is a rare delight. Mayer's delectably dry sense of humor perfectly complements Crusie's brand of sharp wit, and together the two have cooked up a sexy, sassy, and smart combination of romance and suspense that is simply irresistible.” Booklist
“Bless the day that Crusie and Mayer sat down to chat, for this collaboration is inspired!” Romantic Times BOOKreviews (Top Pick)
“Noted romance/chick-lit author Crusie (Bet Me) and adventure author Mayer (Z: A Dave Reilly Novel) team up [and] the writing is seamless.” Library Journal
“The two writers/two viewpoints style lends itself to humor, and the authors don't stint on fast-paced action and complication.” Tampa Tribune
“It's light; it's witty; it's a page-turner. It's romantic, in a he-man/she-modern-woman manner.” The State (South Carolina)
“Combines wit, romance, and movie-quality action in one fast-paced book.” News and Sentinel (Parkesburg, WV)
“Plenty of big guns, helicopters…and light repartee…all in good fun. Readers will be happy to get a bit damp.” Publishers Weekly
“Think Jamie Lee Curtis and Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie True Lies.” Georgia Library Quarterly