Yesterday, I posted about the new Kindle Scout program (speed recap: vote to get books published, get that book for free, bad-freaking-ass all around!). Today, I’m going to talk about my new favorite book on that program. It is called “Order Up” by Katie Golding and you have 28 more days to check it out on Kindle Scout and vote for it, because if you don’t, it doesn’t get published and you will miss out on all the steamy, crack-you-up-laughing, heart-warming goodness of this book.
You can see the official summary on Amazon, but today I want to talk about why I fell in love with this book. First, it’s about real people, not fake-ass book people. You know who I’m talking about: the billionaire who JUST SO HAPPENS to be gorgeous and great in bed, despite the fact that being unselfish isn’t exactly one of the things that tends to propel people toward that level of financial success. Or the girl who is a famous fashion designer who has two beautiful and totally sweet men in love with her at once and has to decide which of them she wants to run away to Paris with. Wouldn’t it be nice, folks?
But no, Order Up is about a pizza delivery guy who is a few years out of high school. Thanks to credit card debt, he’s stuck in a roommate situation where he has to listen through the wall to just how much his brother & brother’s girlfriend like each other (oh, the joy!). He’s in a job that pays for shit and makes him smell like Eu de Pepperoni and Grease but honestly, he has no idea what he OUGHT to be doing with his life. Of course, it helps that the author tells me she pictures Wesley as looking like this:
Yeah, trust me. I know. So that doesn’t hurt. Ooh, let’s take one more peek.
Yeah, that’s lovely. Wesley’s so freaking lovable. He’s utterly himself and he’s a little lost, okay, but he’s sweet, too, and hilarious in his interactions with his gay best friend and his big brother. Then he meets Reagan, who is just a barrel full of energy and fun and this is the point at which you get TOTALLY lost in their flirtation banter. It gives you that sentimental flutter of, “Oooh look at this new hot person and oh wow they kind of like me!” even while you’re wishing you were as witty as the characters themselves. Here’s a peek at the author’s vision of the terribly endearing Reagan:
Reagan’s a Character with a capital C and she and Wesley start out as friends. Yeah, flirty friends but also REAL friends, the kind you rarely see in books between people of the opposite sex. In books it is all sexual tension sexual tension CONFLICTCONFLICTCONFLICT. But here, we get to see them support each other when they’re grouchy or sad or just got hosed by somebody else in their life. We get to see them get to know the weird details of each other’s lives: why Wesley loves his car so much, what dance routine is crippling all the members of Reagan’s troop. They actually freaking KNOW each other, and that’s what makes this book so addicting to me. It’s not all love at first sight or We Are Fated To Be Together Forevah. Instead it is: yup that person is pretty cute and hey, that thing they said was actually pretty funny and then wait, somebody is asking how I am doing and really meaning it for once? *pauses* And then they’re doing something totally adorable (with ducks) to cheer me up? Where did this person even COME from and how did I ever live without them?
It’s the kind of love story you rarely get to see unfold on the page. And then, of course, the conflict. I won’t spoiler anything, but I will say that I feel like this book GETS me, because nothing about it is contrived. The characters go through the stuff that we have ALL been through. The author doesn’t find any neat loopholes that the rest of us somehow missed and I love her for that. And when Wesley finally figures out his dreams, they don’t neatly align with the woman that he loves OR her goals, and the best part? His dream isn’t all, “I want to be a fireman/billionaire/save African puppies.” It is purely Wesley and purely not what you’d expect from fiction, and it is *redacted for spoilery reasons* Their journey isn’t easy, but just like my own journey, I wouldn’t give up the experience for anything.
So why is this a book that’s perfect for Kindle Scout? Because it’s a book for The Rest of Us. You know who you are: the guilty pleasure romance reader who hasn’t gotten as much of a boost from your past 10 reads as you would have liked. The one who adores a good love story and swoons for beautiful writing but dammit why is all the beautiful writing locked up in literary fiction with grand (read: unsatisfying and sad) endings? And why are all the love stories so…trite?
Order Up is the book you’ve been looking for. I know, because it’s the book I didn’t even know I wanted until I found it. And right now, if you hop on over to Kindle Scout and press the “Nominate Me” button, you can get a free copy and share the link and your review with all your friends and help share this incredible story with the rest of the world.
So quit stalling to look at all the pretty pictures and head to Amazon to vote for Order Up!