Its been a long time since I've read a book that at times made me laugh so hard I cried. Shuffle Up and Deal really delivered in that respect. This is...moreIts been a long time since I've read a book that at times made me laugh so hard I cried. Shuffle Up and Deal really delivered in that respect. This is a great erotic romance that had a rocky beginning, but ended with a bang.
The beginning of this book was pretty painful to read. The heroine gets walked all over by her family and finds herself in some pretty embarassing situations. Because of this I *almost* put the book down. However, after throwing it against the wall, I picked it up an hour later to finish reading. After all, I did win this on a GR give-away and the author took the time to write a brief inscription and sign it for me. Thanks Ms. DiPlacido!
I am SO glad I picked the book back up. What followed was a journey into the world of professional poker playing. I think it should be mentioned that I have NEVER played a hand of poker in my life. I know NOTHING about the game. I cannot attest to the accuracy of the card-playing in this book, but after looking up some poker wiki I can tell that the author did her research.
The premise of the story is that the 30-something heroine Izzy is a travel writer and has the opportunity to visit a poker competition featuring Nick Nolan, a poker player that she has a celebrity crush on. After a chance (um FREAKish) encounter they wind up together on a high stakes poker adventure that takes them to poker rooms across the country.
For me what makes a good erotic romance is when the plot of the story comes first and the erotic portions come second, and are not the focus of the story, but just naturally fall into place during the course of the story telling. In this story, the encounters did not seem forced into the book and are very well placed.
I think my only criticism in this book is that it was written in the 1st person p.o.v. It is a little confusing because it goes back and forth between being from the hero and the heroine's p.o.v. and it makes it harder to identify with the characters. I'm not sure though how difficulty it would've been to tell this story from the 3rd person because so much of the humor is from being able to read what is going through the character's head.
Izzy and Nick's relationship is full of ups and downs, and the relationship between Izzy and her family is unbelievably hilarious. If you are looking for a steamy romantic comedy, this is the book for you.
Rated: 3 stars for an enjoyable read. Warning: 1st person p.o.v., erotica, exhibitionism