Tuesday, June 12, 2012

One Small Thing, by Piper Vaughn and MJ O'Shea

One Small Thing
by Piper Vaugn and MJ O'Shea
Published by Dreamspinner Press
Word Count: 69.331


“Daddy” is not a title Rue Murray wanted, but he never thought he’d have sex with a woman either. Now he’s the unwitting father of a newborn named Alice. Between bartending and cosmetology school, Rue doesn’t have time for babies, but he can’t give her up. What Rue needs is a babysitter, and he’s running out of options. He’s on the verge of quitting school to watch Alice himself when he remembers his reclusive new neighbor, Erik.

Erik Van Nuys is a sci-fi novelist with anxiety issues to spare. He doesn’t like people in general, and he likes babies even less. Still, with his royalties dwindling, he could use the extra cash. Reluctantly, he takes on the role of manny—and even more reluctantly, he finds himself falling for Alice and her flamboyant father.

Rue and Erik are as different as two people can be, and Alice is the unlikeliest of babies, but Rue has never been happier than when Alice and Erik are by his side. At least, not until he receives an offer that puts all his dreams within reach and he’s forced to choose: the future he’s always wanted, or the family he thought he never did.


Can you guess what first caught my attention about this book? Of course you can, the cover. It's adorable. I wanted to read it because of those cute little toes. I didn't know what to expect, but I thought there would be a little more baby stuff involved. Sure, there was a baby, but she was mostly used to bind Rue and Erik together, like a side prop. I thought there would be more firsts and more specific baby things. They could have been thrown in, but they were mostly just excluded and I was a little disappointed by that.

That's not to say I didn't like this story. I liked it very much. I'm a big fan of Piper Vaughn and MJ O'Shea. Their writing is perfect and I can never get enough. However, I did feel that this story dragged on a little. Or maybe it was because we got the point of views from both guys, and sometimes we read parts of the same scene from both their views (it was clearly marked when we were in Rue's/Eric's point of view, so that was never confusing). So it was a bit like replay at times. I understand why it was done, but it stilled slowed the story..

I can't find any fault with the characters. Rue is outgoing, wonderfully flamboyant, but still mature (not the innocent/oblivious flamboyant type). Erik is a recluse and has severe anxiety issues. He might even be suffering from a degree of autism with his compulsiveness, difficulty of handling people and touching them, and his slow understanding of how people work (he's not stupid, he just works differently). I don't have much experience with autism apart from what I've read, but it sounded very realistic in this story. Putting these different kinds of characters together in one book was very interesting. The characters both evolved, but Erik more than Rue (maybe because he needed it more for their relationship to work).

Their relationship was fun to read. Both funny and sweet. The only niggle was why Erik fell for Rue in the first place. I felt like there was a scene missing where he made the realization (he just suddenly liked Rue, as more than a boss/friend). When their feelings were starting to show for one another, it felt more likely that Erik would have developed feeling for Dusty (a secondary character in the book, but also wonderfully unique). But aside from that one thing, the rest worked for me.

The sex scenes were loving and beautiful. They weren't overdone and there weren't many of them. This is more a romance than erotic romance, but with the explicit scenes I'm putting an erotic romance label on it.

All in all, I do recommend this book very much. It's going into my favourites.

Writing/Voice: 5/5
Characters/Development: 5/5
Plot/Pace: 4/4
Heat: 5 (Perfect, just the right amount)
Stars: 4

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