by Alice Clayton
genre: adult romance
I don’t remember the last time I returned a book. Even ones I didn’t like, it was still my baby and I still loved it just like my other babies even if I didn’t like it at the time. In the very least I would make sure it went to a good home. Wallbanger was a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It started out amazing! Easily a five star read, it had humor, it had banter, it had witty innuendos and adorable characters you couldn’t help but love. Then about 3/4 of the way through, it dropped to a four star book when the tension wasn’t there. It REALLY should have ended the book there because it was still good, just not a five. Instead it continued, and quickly disintegrated into something that with 35 minutes left to go on the audiobook, I returned. It was so bad that I had to rewrite the review because I had started raving about it. Here’s what I was writing at the 75% mark:
Not as bad as the title suggests, but is an adult novel. I needed something to listen to that would distract me from the sounds of the dentist office and then distract me when I ripped my toenail off. This book delivered. Laugh out loud funny and very distracting.
The review contains adult material. Continue reading to learn where and why it all went wrong, but know there are spoilers.
Synopsis from Goodreads
Caroline Reynolds has a fantastic new apartment in San Francisco, a KitchenAid mixer, and no O (and we’re not talking Oprah here, folks). She has a flourishing design career, an office overlooking the bay, a killer zucchini bread recipe, and no O. She has Clive (the best cat ever), great friends, a great rack, and no O.
Adding insult to O-less, since her move, she has an oversexed neighbor with the loudest late-night wallbanging she’s ever heard. Each moan, spank, and–was that a meow?–punctuates the fact that not only is she losing sleep, she still has, yep, you guessed it, no O.
Enter Simon Parker. (No, really, Simon, please enter.) When the wallbanging threatens to literally bounce her out of bed, Caroline, clad in sexual frustration and a pink baby-doll nightie, confronts her heard-but-never-seen neighbor. Their late-night hallway encounter has, well, mixed results. Ahem. With walls this thin, the tension’s gonna be thick…
In her third novel, Alice Clayton returns to dish her trademark mix of silly and steamy. Banter, barbs, and strutting pussycats, plus the sexiest apple pie ever made, are dunked in a hot tub and set against the gorgeous San Francisco skyline in this hot and hilarious tale of exasperation at first sight.
There are books that I listen to, leaving my phone on speaker while I wander around and tidy the apartment. Other books require headphones. My walls aren’t as thin as the one separating Caroline from her wallbanging neighbor, but I wasn’t taking any chances. To my surprise, most of it was innuendos and descriptions of sounds coming from the other side of the wall. Naughty dreams were descriptive, but not enough to push this out of the romance genre… or so I wrote at the 75% mark.
What the hell Alice? The book was amazing! Why couldn’t you stop writing as soon as they got together (is it really a spoiler if you know it’s going to happen)? Wallbanger had more laugh out loud moments than any I can remember. The tension and characters really drove the story; once they got together, the banter wasn’t there. It just wasn’t amusing no longer getting to watch them struggle and hearing the inner monologue. I don’t mind sex in my books, but for the love of everything, even the energizer bunny on steroids does not have that much stamina. It could have ended a four star read, but this witty amusing story filled with humor and quirky characters disintegrated into chapter after chapter of sex on the kitchen floor, sex in the shower, sex on the bed, a hand job, a blow job, more sex on the kitchen floor, sex on the island counter, another blow job. Enough already! I don’t think Fifty Shades of Grey had that much sex without breaking it up with story in between and the really awkward way Caroline’s orgasm is personified into a redhead swimming in the water, later referred to as “that bitch” and “held off” to “get even with her for being gone,” bordered on Freudian crazy.
Maybe there was a redeeming bit of something in the last 35 minutes, but I couldn’t listen to one more awkward panting orgasm at the thought of baked goods. I feel the need to stick a washcloth through my ears and clean my brain to remove some of the imagery and I made it all of the way through Fifty Shades! What is wrong with this picture?
What has been heard cannot be unheard.
2 out of 5 stars only because the first 75% of the book was amazing. Yes, the ending was that bad.