Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Melinda's Review: Tikka Chance on Me

Remember, since this is a Royal Pick, come back on November 29th for a chance to win an ecopy of your own!

Tikka Chance on Me by Suleikha Snyder
Publisher: Suleikha Snyder (November 13, 2018)
Genre: Contemporary Romance

He's the bad-boy biker. She's the good girl working in her family's Indian restaurant. On the surface, nothing about Trucker Carrigan and Pinky Grover's instant, incendiary, attraction makes sense. But when they peel away the layers and the assumptions--and their clothes--everything falls into place. The need. The want. The light. The laughter. They have more in common than they ever could've guessed. Is it enough? They won't know until they take a chance on each other--and on love.

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Melinda's Review:

I generally have a hard time finding novellas that work for me. And I think that there are a few reasons for this - mainly around how challenging they must be to write. The author has to take all of the world building, the plot, the characterization, just everything and condense it down to maybe a third or less of a standard book. There's so much that can go wrong there. Particularly in the romance genre because readers are so used to watching a relationship evolve. Even in love at first sight cases - relationships then would go through ups and downs, internal or external conflict, and some sort of strife. All of this is next to impossible to get shrunk down into a novella and still hit those romance beats we want and need.

Suleikha Snyder's Tikka Chance on Me worked for me on pretty much every level. First we have the title - I LOVE a good pun, a pun based on food? Even better! Snyder has experience writing short stories and novellas previously so I fully expected that she was up to the task of writing. But I wasn't prepared for it to be quite as funny as it was. Pinky and Trucker connect via pop culture references, which just on the surface I found hilarious. I was delighted to find Marvel, Broadway, and music references that I understood and cracked up at these two discussing. But what I thought Snyder did so brilliantly here was use pop culture as a code to go deeper and establish that connection between the two characters quickly and firmly - which is clearly needed when time is of the essence in novella length. She uses musicals as a way to signal Trucker is sensitive and Marvel to code they're both more than what they seem on the surface. This shorthand and the way she utilizes it in Tikka Chance on Me really shined brightly.

I hadn't saved myself for the likes of Trucker Carrigan, but he sure knew how to make me feel like that old Madonna song - shiny and new. I'd been touched. A lot. In all kinds of places. 
And I'd had no idea that there was an overlap in the motorcycle club and vegan communities. Who knew? Were there entire vegan motorcycle clubs? Did they wear vegan leather jackets?

Beyond the humor Snyder also manages to hit all of the romance beats that we need. We get both internal and external conflict as well as those steamy moments we need, or at least *I* need. The two have a chemistry that is incredibly strong and leaps off the page. But it's not only steamy, it's sweet, which is a combination that I imagine is incredibly difficult to pull off between so few pages. Trucker has layers to his personality that comes through in the way he treats Pinky in bed.

I felt...cherished. He kissed me again and again - my lips, my cheeks, my throat. He whispered things that weren't just filthy. They were sweet. Things I never would've thought him capable of until this past week.

If all that was not enough for me to be sold on this book the author goes the extra mile and throws in my favorite thing ever - CONSENT. The below is such a small line but it means the world to see these moments in books. Consent is always sexy.

Poised above her pussy, he stopped for a check in. “Are you okay with this?”

Added to that we get to see both POV's here so the reader is privy to how Trucker views the world, including gender dynamics such as this:

He'd definitely slept with more people than her, but no one considered his journey home any kind of shame, because he was a man.

We get to see how Pinky views herself as well, which is with confidence, and not at all in need of anyone else's approval. Getting that combination of a confident woman who is self-assured with a man who recognizes how he walks through the world was just really nice to see. And it's packaged in this genuinely funny, romantic novella. It just really made me happy to read!


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Source: eARC (author)

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Thanks for the review, Melinda! I can't wait to dive into this one.


Until Next Time,

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