Bet Me

Bet Me

Book - 2004
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This is New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jennifer Crusie's novel about long shots, risk management, true love, and great shoes. . . .Minerva Dobbs knows how to work the odds.Calvin Morrisey always plays to win.But when they face off, neither one is prepared.Because when real life meets true love, all bets are off. . . .Minerva Dobbs knows that happily-ever-after is a fairy tale, especially with a man who asked her to dinner to win a bet, even if he is gorgeous and successful Calvin Morrisey. Cal knows commitment is impossible, especially with a woman as cranky as Min Dobbs, even if she does wear great shoes and keep him on his toes. When they say good-bye at the end of their evening, they cut their losses and agree never to see each other again.But fate has other plans, and it's not long before Min and Cal meet again. Soon they're dealing with a jealous ex-boyfriend, Krispy Kreme doughnuts, a determined psychologist, chaos theory, a freakishly intelligent cat, Chicken Marsala, and more risky propositions than either of them ever dreamed of. Including the biggest gamble of all - true love.   Bet Me is the winner of a 2005 RITA Award.
Publisher: New York : St. Martin's Press, 2004.
ISBN: 9780312303464
0312303467
Characteristics: 337 pages ;,25 cm.

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skyekilaen
Sep 22, 2018

I'm lucky my husband didn't tell me to read this in another room, given how much I was laughing out loud while reading it. The setup is like so: actuary Min Dobbs hears the guy who just dumped her making a bet with gorgeous playboy Cal Morrisey that he can't get Min into bed. Min doesn't hear Cal turn down the bet, and she needs a date to her sister's wedding so her mother doesn't freak out that she's single, so she decides to string Cal along. Whereupon Cal and Min discover, to their mutual horror, that their bickering is basically foreplay and they can barely keep their hands off each other.

Crusie adeptly juggles a HUGE cast, including Min's 2 female best friends, her mother, her sister, Cal's two male best friends / business partners, both Cal and Min's conniving exes, Cal's lesbian bartender neighbor/friend, and various other secondary characters. It feels like a great big found/chosen family, and a self-aware dialogue with the idea of fairy tale endings, and it's also an examination of how families can judge and control people, and how to find allies that help you push back. That's probably why it's 430+ pages long. I barely noticed because I was so immersed. Characters tell each other uncomfortable truths, relationships begin and end, and the truckload of humor is well mixed with some serious emotions, particularly around Cal's relationship with his emotionally abusive family of origin (which is inflicting itself on his nephew) and the pain he still carries from growing up with dyslexia in that unsupportive environment.

Loved it. Very motivated to work my way through Crusie's backlist now. (Okay, her anti-Trump blogging didn't hurt that motivation. ;)

Content notes: (1) I didn't take down specifics, but there's probably some gender essentialism and whatnot in here, given it's a mainstream romance. (2) Min is fat, and her overbearing mother has somewhat terrorized her into not eating carbs because Bridesmaid's Dress, to which Cal's response is to feed Min donuts and encourage her acquisition of clothes that show just how awesome she looks exactly as she is. There's something very trope-y about the donuts and not in a good way, and Min definitely doesn't start the book feeling good about being fat, though she does end up there. So if that would be uncomfortable for you, skip it!

m
mammothhawk229e
Apr 04, 2018

I liked light frothy novel. I could easily see why book had movie option.

b
beaglebabygirl
Feb 07, 2018

Snappy dialogue and fun characters.

b
blue_dog_8329
Nov 20, 2016

Not exactly what I expected, but I guess that's why I didn't 100% enjoy it. I think I pictured the story and characters with different looks and personalities ahead of time, so when I actually read it I was kind of disappointed. Still an okay book for people looking for something different to read time to time.

SaraLovesBooks Oct 11, 2016

Bet Me might be the best contemporary romances I have ever read. The humor, the snappy dialogue, and the realistic characters all serve to make an absolutely amazing tale. *Highly* recommend.

EscapesToBooks Oct 11, 2016

One of the very best contemporary romances. Read it for laughs, read it for the snappy dialogue or read it for the happy ending. Just read it!

n
nidofito
Feb 22, 2014

It's exhausting reading Crusie's books. There are so many characters that you have to keep track of and you can't zone out or use them as background noise either because they're all interesting to read. Heck, even our main couple is exhausting to read about. You can't expect the same thing from them whenever they meet.

I have to say though, she really let that sexual tension go right until the very end. I think we were all a little frustrated, along with Cal, to finally get Min in bed.

Its getting a little hard now to decide who my favorite female and male leads are after reading a few of her books. I think what's best about them is that no one is without faults, makes them all so like-able.

EvaIFischer Jan 29, 2014

Jennifer Crusie is in my opinion the undisputed goddess (pun related to her collaboration with Anne Stuart and Lani Diane Rich ABSOLUTELY intended) of romance. I would liken her to Nora Ephron with the perfect blend of humour, romance and intelligence. Her characters, with all shapes and sizes (especially the women) make me want to be like them... in my own special way. Bet me is the best of her novels, so far, in my opinion. I like everyone of the distinct characters and I quite frankly wanted to live where they are. If you liked the tv show FRIENDS - particularly Monica and Chandler - then you'll probably enjoy this book

t
tragicflaw
Jan 03, 2012

This is a great read, a friend bought it and couldn't put it down while she was visiting me and then she gave it to me and I couldn't put it down. It is not my usual read but it was enjoyable and funny. I had to stop myself from laughing out loud at some points to keep from waking up my husband.

mark445 Dec 13, 2011

Good read

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brihawkins13 Apr 06, 2018

brihawkins13 thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

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