TITLE: The Kiss Quotient
BY: Helen Hoang
GENRE: Romance, Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
PUBLICATION: June 5th 2018 by Berkley (first published May 30th 2018)
For 30-year old Stella Lane, making algorithms is so much easier than dating. With her Asperger’s, it isn’t really easy for her to be intimate with others but she’s not getting any younger. Her parents think so too. But she knew she couldn’t do it alone. She needed lessons and for those, she chose Michael Phan, a half-Swedish half-Vietnamese escort who isn’t just a stunner, but also a great lover. 🙂 🙂
It should’ve been just lessons for Stella and just another job for Michael… But we all know that when love decided to be part of something, it can’t be put out.
Let me start by saying that STELLA is one of my favorite names. I just love it so much and I love it more because of Stella Lane. I don’t usually say this about heroines in romance, but she stole my heart. She captivated my heart even before Michael did. it’s fascinating to see how much she loves her work and I might have teared once in a while reading about her. Reading how awkward she is, how worried she is with everything. But I don’t pity, no, in fact I respect her. She knew it will be hard for her but she listened to her parents anyway when they told her about their worries because she knew somehow, they’re right. So she did what she can do, she hired someone who could help her.
And then there’s Michael, and I got to see Stella opening up for him (figuratively and literally. hahaha) It was PERFECT. Everything about this book makes me smile.
Though at first, I must admit, I was scared to read this one because Michael is an escort. I have nothing against his job, if someone wants to do it, it’s okay. What I was scared of, is what if there’s shaming in the story like I might get angry and I don’t my reads making me angry. But this book surprised me, Michael is an escort and there’s no shaming in it in the story. I loved how it was handled. And oh, oh, oh, I love Michael so much. This is so embarrassing for me to say but if he’s the sex tutor ahm, I think I’m gonna enroll. Because man, he can really teach you a thing or four…
Thank God my parents don’t like internet, they will never read this. hahaha…
Also I thought reading this would be so awkward. We’re talking about 2 characters who are exactly opposite when it comes to intimacy. I’ve read this plot before before, one teaching the other about sex but never in a person with autism. It brings the plot in whole new level and awkwardness is almost a sure thing. Let me tell you, there’s no awkwardness here, just pure cuteness and love that truly warmed my heart.
That being said, most of the reviews I read prior to reading this says it’s a heartwarming story. It’s cute and adorable. They’re all right but no one prepared me for how graphic the scenes are. yeah, I knew sex is a big part of the story but I never expected how erotic the scenes are. I’m telling you even if Michael and Stella aren’t having sex, the dialogues…………………………….
This makes sense though. He’s teaching her about it anyway. And we’re talking about every step of sex, every little step: from foreplay to fucking. Word by word. Stella takes everything literal, by the way. It’s in her nature. But note, I don’t find the lessons gross or too sexual and not anymore romantic, you know what I mean? Maybe because Michael is really a very sweet person that even while being sexual, he’s being romantic.
Autism was handled her perfectly and that’s five-star for me. It was NOT romanticized, it’s obvious the author made her research properly. The culture of Michael’s family was portrayed fine too. And by the way, Michael never had sex with others after meeting Stella. I know this info matters to others, it does to me, so even if this a bit spoilery, I’m letting you guys know.
BONUS NOTE: I so love that Ice cream scene and no guys, this isn’t THAT kind of scene. LOL. This is a sweet scene in public, It’s a cliche one but I so love it.
Hope you guys enjoy this book too and let me know your thoughts about it.