“I don’t want just a night or a week or a month with you. I want you all the time. I like you better than calculus, and math is the only thing that unites the universe.“
Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases—a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.
It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice—with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan—from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…
Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but to crave all the other things he’s making her feel. Soon, their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…
Trigger Warnings: Explicit sex scenes/ Anxiety attacks
Spoilers: Please note that my review might contain spoilers!
Stella is a 30 year old econometrician with Asperger who is very successful in her professional life but she’s lacking success in her dating life. She’s had intimate relations but she doesn’t enjoy them and can’t unlock herself from her frozen state. She’s very insecure and always worried she can’t please the other person, so she decides to hire a male escort to teach her how to have good sex and make her sexual partners happy.
“Girls like you don’t need escorts. Girls like you have boyfriends. You need to get this idea out of your head.”
Michael is struggling to pay his absent father’s debts. With his mother very ill Michael has no other choice than using his good looks to earn some money, so he escorts every friday. In one of those evenings Michael’s very surprised that his client for the evening is a beautiful young girl. When Stella explains what she wants from him, he’s surprised that a girl like her is that shy but since he’s so curious about her and attracted to her, he accepts her offer. On that first night Michael refuses to continue with the intimacy experiment because he finds Stella frozen and shaking. When she tells him she wants to keep trying in more sessions he first refuses to do so since he doesn’t repeat encounters with his clients to avoid complications and obsessions, but when she tells him she will find another escort Michael feels obligated to help her. Who knows how the other male escorts would treat her?
How was she supposed to seduce him when he seduced her so well?
I think the great thing about this book are the characters. I loved to read about Stella’s lack of social skills and insecurities and loved her chemistry with Michael who is also an amazing character with some complex problems.
The author brought us a lovely and fun read. I was very surprised with this novel and I will definitely be reading more from Helen Hoang.
– Michael and Stella first encounter
– Stella meeting Michael’s family
– Stella’s apology to Michael’s mom
– The sex scene
“You don’t like French kissing?” “It makes me feel like a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish.”
“Oh, that’s just ridiculous,” she said. “You look like you’re auditioning for a Häagen-Dazs commercial. No one smiles like that after eating ice cream.”
She had a disorder, but it didn’t define her. She was Stella. She was a unique person.
“Michael was mint chocolate chip for her. She could try other flavors, but he’d always be her favorite.”
“He wants me to get a boyfriend. Me. I’m almost sixty,”
Janelle nodded sagely. “It’s never too late for true love.”
“Bah. I just want to work. Money is better than men. I want a Hermès handbag.”
THIS BOOK STALKER CONFESSES: