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Monday, January 18, 2010

What She Deserves by Ellie Marvel

What She Deserves by Ellie Marvel
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (103 pgs)
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 Cherries
Reviewed by Fern

Then: Geeky science nerd. Now: Most Likely to Fall in Love!

At seventeen Winifred Sampson was sure of three things. She was a nerd, she hated Peter Duvall, and her crush on the quarterback would never be reciprocated. Ten years later, she can safely revise two of those constants. She’s a sexy, self-confident woman, more than woman enough to seduce a former high school football player. She doesn’t spare a thought for that turkey Peter…until she sees him at the reunion.

My, how he’s grown!

Peter never cared that he and Winnie were the class nerds. So they were smart. So they didn’t have dates. Big deal. Now they’re both smart and successful. She was always his fantasy girl, and he’s decided to make a few of his own dreams come true…in the most carnal way possible.

All he has to do is convince her he’s graduated—with honors—from dud to stud.

What She Deserves is a story that touches upon a theme all of us can relate to. Who hasn’t considered what it would be like at a five, ten, or twenty-year high school reunion? Let’s face it; high school years are some of the worst imaginable for most. For every good memory, there are another half-dozen or more that overshadow it. Of course, hidden crushes, secret loves, and teenage angst go hand-in-hand. What better way to face down your demons – or in this case, a cruel and competitive high school nemesis – while also showing the entire class you’ve grown up, moved on, and are living the good life?

Winifred Sampson, aka Winnie, got my attention immediately. Like a modern day Cinderella, she spiced up her once nerdy persona with a sex-kitten kind of flavor. She cracked me up time and again, and I couldn’t get enough of her quick wit. That isn’t to say the lick-your-fingers yummy Peter Duvall is anything to shake a stick at. He once held a spot in the geek line – but no longer. It’s not often a hero strolls onto the page and sweeps you off your feet, but Peter carried it off with nary an effort. He’s confident, sexy, and has a secret I couldn’t wait to see revealed – a longtime crush on Winifred; the girl he tormented mercilessly throughout high school. From the moment Peter and Winnie connect outside the doors of the venue that will lead them back into teenage purgatory, you’ll snicker, grin, and laugh out loud. And it only gets better when desires are recognized and the temperature rises.

As for the story itself – while I loved the way the entire scenario played out, I did have an issue with Peter’s actions when it came to seducing Winnie. Assisting in the inebriation of another to lower their sexual inhibitions is not a catalyst I’m fond of. That isn’t to say I felt Peter would hurt Winnie, but rather, he is well-aware (or thinks he is) that she is thinking of another man when they are together, and therefore, doesn’t want to be with him at all. The implication that he was taking advantage – and was aware of it – was enough to make me uncomfortable, and I felt it should be mentioned.

Aside from that very minor element, the story is fantastic and will get your motor running. The history between Peter and Winnie is wonderfully presented, and the secondary characters are given just enough time on the page to make them interesting. I laughed, I squirmed, and when the Tallwood Class of ’98 cheerleading squad got some extremely memorable time on the page, I spewed soda across my keyboard.

Fans of the high-school-nerd-turned-hunk theme are sure to enjoy What She Deserves, as are those who enjoy a good belly-laugh. Humor and sizzling sex always complement one another, and there is plenty of that to go around in this story – and then some.

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