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Big Boy (Strangers on a Train)

3.85 of 5 stars 3.85  ·  rating details  ·  471 ratings  ·  127 reviews
He'll be any man she wants--except himself.

A Strangers on a Train story

Meet me at the train museum after dark. Dress for 1957.

When Mandy joins an online dating service, she keeps her expectations low. All she wants is a distraction from the drudgery of single parenthood and full-time work. But the invitation she receives from a handsome man who won’t share his real name pr
ebook, 66 pages
Published April 2nd 2013 by Samhain
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Community Reviews

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Big Boy could refer to any number of things -






But the titular Big Boy here refers to this Big Boy.


For Mandy, a teacher at the University of Wisconsin and a single mother to a toddler, life is full of teaching and mothering. Lonely and desperate for an outlet she goes online and meets up with a man. They meet once a month at the National Railroad Museum. They dress up and role-play from different eras. She doesn't know his real name.

There are five books in this Strangers on a Train series, and th
Apr 07, 2013 Karla rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Karla by: Jill and Crista

4 Chugga Chugga Choo Choo Stars!!! All aboard!! This gives a whole new meaning to 'A Night at the Museum'!

What a sweet little gem of a book! I loved the whole idea behind this read. It was different and lots of fun, but it also had a serious side, all of which was perfectly executed by Ruthie Knox.

Told from Amanda's POV, she tells us her true feelings of the life she's been thrust into, not one she would have chosen for herself, but now that she lives it, she can't imagine it being any other w
Originally reviewed here @ Angieville

I . . . I am just not going to be able to pull off being at all dignified about this book. I couldn't possibly manage it and, what's more, I am not the least bit interested in trying. Because this book is so good it makes my teeth hurt. And I just wasn't expecting teeth-hurting goodness, you know? I was expecting a bit of fun, an engaging evening. It's a novella, for crying out loud! How much awesome can Ruthie Knox pack into 66 pages? Honestly. I should just
My brains has been hijacked by my libido.

Love that quote! This novella has sass and heart. It's engaging and it touches on the realities of life. I enjoyed this quite a lot and loved that ending! So good!

Jaime Arkin
Novella's are notoriously hard... it's difficult to build a 'relationship' with the characters because the story isn't very long and you don't get much history about them to even start forming an attachment.

Big Boy is an exception to that rule. In 66 pages, Ruthie had me cursing Tyler and wanting to jump into the pages to hug Mandy and tell her everything was going to be wonderful.

Mandy is a single mom to a child that isn't biologically hers. She works full time and she struggles to make ends me
Review posted at: Swept Away By Romance

~5 Amazing stars!~

I can honestly say that I’ve never read anything like Big Boy before today, and there is nothing negative in that statement! I finished Big Boy this morning and I’ve been thinking about it ever since.

Big Boy is part of the “Strangers on a Train” series, but the series is connected only in that the romances all occur on trains. This is a complete stand-alone novella.

Mandy is 34, but she feels so much older. She is a college professor and is
Lady Heather
Apr 14, 2013 Lady Heather rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: contemporary romance
Recommended to Lady Heather by: based on Paula's review :)
What an amazing little gem!!
Loved the writing!
The author did a fantastic job of creating wonderful characters, and story in so few pages!
LOVED the role-playing, and the rules no last names, and come as anyone you want, just stay in character.
Ruthie Knox is such a fun writer! My favorite full-length book by Knox is Ride with Me. This one is shorter, a novella. It's told entirely in first person POV, from the heroine's perspective.

Big Boy is fairly entertaining, set in a city I know well -- Green Bay -- and at a train museum -- how cool is that? (It felt like something was missing, with no mention of the Green Bay Packers, just knowing that city as I do).

I liked the various scenarios, set in different boxcars, with Tyler and Mandy in

Mandy’s life has changed quite dramatically ever since her sister and family were killed by a drunk driver. They left behind Mandy’s nine day old nephew, who she became the legal guardian for. Being a single parent and working full-time doesn’t leave much of a social life for Mandy, so she decides to join an online dating service. While looking through the men’s profiles, she kept coming across the same man with different identities from different eras in time. This man piques Mandy’s interest,
FV Angela
Originally posted at

Trying to get away from the monotony of her everyday life after the death of her sister and taking on the care of her infant nephew, Mandy joins an online dating service. Her interest is captured by a man who seems to have multiple profiles, in each one he is dressed as a different historical figure, taking on a new persona with each change of clothes. When she receives an offer to meet with him she accepts, and this begins a meeting o
4.5 stars. Big Boy is Ruthie Knox's novella found in Strangers on a Train.

What a beautiful surprise. So genuine, so gut wrenching, so real.

I simply love this novella. There are some stories that just hit you at a visceral level; the writing here is so authentic, it speaks to my soul. It is about a woman who world is turned on a dime and who is learning to adjust to/work with/manage motherhood and career. In that transition, Mandy is trying to find out where she fits in this new reality. Motherh
I want to write some really insightful and meaningful review, but I seem to be tongue-tied. (Finger-tied?) This was just a gem of a story -- it's short, but every word has a punch. It's kind of dark and rough, yet somehow manages to sparkle at the same time. It's about reality and fantasy and why we need both -- and it gives us both. Loved it.
Jill Sorenson
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Fiona Marsden
Okay 5 stars may seem over the top for a sexy little novella, but it made me cry. This is a really special little story about two people who are very real. Which is funny because they spend all their time together pretending to be someone else.

Mandy and Tyler connect in the modern way through the internet, their monthly dates carefully planned around the local railway museum. But they don't plan on what happens to them over the passing time. The connection that grows.

I loved this little story a
Kellie G.
This novella was fresh, sexy & unique, just like the other Ruthie Knox books I've read.
Annie (Under the Covers Book Blog)

BIG BOY is another book in the multi-author Strangers on a Train series with Samhain. I’m a huge fan of Ruthie Knox’s contemporaries so I definitely jumped at the chance to read this short story.

Knox does something interesting in this book. As you know, all the books in this series are centered on couples meeting or falling in love on trains. Though I don’t think the train aspect was as strong in this story as it is in others, I think it definitely fits the role-playing that Knox does. Now, the

My first from this author. I like the concept of Strangers on Train added by the role play and the dress up which I love so so much. For Mandy, a University teacher and a single parent to a toodler, life can be tiresome. Although she loved teaching and love her son like a real son, she needed an escape to feel carefree and enjoy her womanhood even for a day every month. She joined dating on line, got hooked by a man who have a lot of accounts with different names and dress up according to his j
How did we end up here?

So I don’t normally do short stories. I like to settle in and spend time with a story and its characters. I really want to get to know everybody and everything. I like to just move right on in and get all up in their business. The very small, short glimpse into the bigger picture (that is all that novellas tend to give), doesn’t really hold a lot of appeal for me, but I saw this one, and something inside me dared me to go for it.

Okay, book. You've got 50 pages. Go!

There wa
When Mandy joined an online dating agency she was looking for a temporary escape from her day to day life as a single mum. Her monthly dates with a handsome stranger who has never even told her his name has bought the fun back into her life, particularly when she gets to dress up and pretend to be someone else for a while as they step back in time during their role play games. At first she was happy with the lack of commitment between them but now she is starting to develop stronger feelings and ...more
A novel by Ruthie Knox is always on my favorites list. This novella does not change my opinion. Short but with a lot of hot romance and characters that are strong with deep life changing secrets.

Strangers on a Train is group of romantic novellas, all based on train rides. They can be read in any order. I started with Big Boy. Mandy Sharp is a professor of American Studies at a university. She is a single Mom to Joshua, technically her nephew. Her sister's family was killed in a car crash when J
This was different! And I loved the playing the main characters had going on - until one of them didn't want to play anymore.

This and other reviews can also be found on my blog (un)Conventional Bookviews.

Big Boy is a fun and very hot story about Amanda, and the very little time she has to actually go out on a date. Not at all desperate to find a special someone in her life, she does realize that she needs more than just her job and being a mother to Josh, though, and when she signs up with a dat
Another great read, very unique and enjoyable. The reader discovers the story bits by bits, just like Amanda with her mystery lover. I loved the 1st person point of view because it really felt like I was Mandy, in the dark about so many important things and yet craving it. I was more than happy to read the resolution of this romance. Ruthie Knox might just be the Novella Queen for me.
Emily (Book Jems)
Ruthie Knox writes another amazing story, that I couldn't get enough of in Big Boy. I highly recommend it, if you are looking for a short, heart-warming story with some angst twisted in it. Knox is fantastic, but we all already knew that, right?
Eleanor (The Book Hammock)
The first Strangers on a Train I decided to read (there's no reading order). How can I not pick Big Boy to start with? It's Ruthie's. The premise is out there, so I'm going to spill my feelings throughout the read.

Many is a REAL woman. She's got everyday life struggles, she's a professional, and Academia woman, and she has a toddler.
Tyler is a caretaker of his ailing father. He's educated, he wants a good life, he wants love, and he's freaking scared.

So, I giggled:

my ass looks like two puppies
A role-playing romp after hours at a train museum.

Talk about a fun ride! I loved this novella from start to finish. Mandy is a young professor seeking tenure who is thrown into the role of mother when her sister and her brother in law die in a car accident, leaving her the sole custodian of their 4 month old son, Josh. Juggling a demanding career and an even more demanding toddler, Mandy allows herself only one escape per month, a role-playing date with a guy she met on an internet dating site w
Reviewed for Sara at :D
Review copy courtesy of the publisher.

You know, I never thought trains were sexy... until I started reading this "Strangers on a Train" series. Ok, let me be honest... I'm not sure I think trains are sexy. But I'll admit that some sexy stuff can happen on a train! Ok? How about that? There's about 5 books by various authors (Ruthie Knox, Serena Bell, etc) and they all take place in, on or around a train. I started with Ruthie Knox's book and it look
4,5 stars

I have to confess that I started this book with quite an amount of apprehension as I am not a fan of stories told in first person narrative. But I've read and adored some of Ruthie Knox's books so I decided to take the plunge head first.

And I have no regrets! I loved the premise of the story: strangers who met online and have standing role-playing dates once a month.

I also really liked how this story was told, little by little you get the story of Mandy and her mysterious and intrigui
Brie C.
I read this short novella in one sitting, and when I was done, I went back and read it again. First time I've ever done that. Big Boy wasn't just good in terms of storytelling and overall quality; it also hit all the right buttons and resonated with me as a reader in general and for personal reasons in particular.

Mandy is one of those heroines who inherited an orphan. She loves the toddler, but the situation isn't perfect, and it sure as hell isn't happy. Her life turned into the chaos that come
"I tell them things about Indian nations and white male privilege that disturb their comfortable worldviews."

"But having a baby is like having a bad boyfriend."

"I liked him better when I didn't know his name."

"I don't need him anymore."

"I can't decide if he deserves a second chance."

Best heroine ever. Even when falling in love and feeling angsty over it Mandy's brain doesn't turn off--she's a practical woman who seriously thinks about the consequences of her actions and therefore doesn't jump at
3.5 stars

Ruthie has quickly worked her way up the ranks to be positioned as one of my favorite contemporary romance authors. As such, I always have a higher expectation when reading one of her books.

Alas, that may have been a downfall in this book. While, by the end, I enjoyed this, the beginning had me uncertain. I didn't love Mandy. She came off as selfish and, to be honest, a little bitchy. However, the more I got into it, the more I was able to enjoy. And I loved the ending and everything t
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USA Today bestselling author Ruthie Knox writes contemporary romance that’s sexy, witty, and angsty—sometimes all three at once. Her debut novel, Ride with Me, is probably the only existing cross-country bicycling love story. She followed it up with About Last Night, a London-set romance whose hero has the unlikely name of Neville, and then Room at the Inn, a Christmas novella—both of which were f ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Strangers on a Train (5 books)
  • Ticket Home
  • Thank You for Riding (Strangers on a Train)
  • Back on Track
  • Tight Quarters
About Last Night Ride with Me How to Misbehave (Camelot, #1) Along Came Trouble (Camelot, #2) Flirting with Disaster (Camelot, #3)

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“I want him to have everything, but all he has is me.” 2 likes
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