Sunday, March 9, 2014

REVIEW and GIVEAWAY: WHAT A WOMAN WANTS (MANLEY MAIDS #1) by JUDI FENNELL

What a Woman Wants (Manley Maids, #1)Series: Manley Maids #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: 3/4/14
Format: ARC
Pages: 336
Source: Publisher
Rating: 3 stars

What happens when three irresistibly sexy brothers lose a poker bet to their enterprising sister? They get hired out for her housecleaning venture. Now, the Manley Maids are at your service. Satisfaction guaranteed. It’s what a woman wants... Resort entrepreneur Sean Manley was all set to buy an historic mansion at a great price, making a name for himself while making millions, when the seller and a poker bet change the game. Now he’s in the place as a hunky male maid and there’s one more complication: Livvy Carolla.

The house is Livvy’s inheritance. Her plan? Unload it to the highest bidder and use the cash to start her own bakery business. One look at "the help” and she’s hot to take him with her. Until she finds out he’s got a secret agenda.

But when Sean falls for the free-spirited, strong-willed Livvy, he has new ideas for the estate—and Livvy’s part in it. If all goes well, they’ll both be getting what they want. And then some.
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18342300-what-a-woman-wants?from_search=true

What a Woman Wants is a story I was anxious to read. The cover is kind of adorable, and the story sounded cute. I mean, a male maid, that's pretty much every woman's dream come true.

What a Woman Wants begins with Livvy Carolla inheriting her estranged grandmother's estate. There is one stipulation: Livvy has to complete a scavenger hunt, with the clues being bits of family history. A history she is not familiar with, and she only has two weeks to complete. Sounds fun, right? I adored that angle.

What's standing in Livvy's way, besides the hunt, is Sean Manly. Sean lost a bet with his sister, and is now working for her maid service at Livvy's grandmother's estate. The joke's on sister, though, because Sean is interested in purchasing the property and converting it into a luxury resort. If Livvy gains her inheritance, his dreams and a lot of money go up in smoke. Sean feels he has no choice but to sabotage Livvy. Sean's deceit made me unhappy, but I got that it was probably necessary to make the story happen.

So basically, what I found was a fun, enjoyable story. So why the sad face and the three star rating? Short answer: ANIMALS. So many animals and it drove me crazy. Some readers hate books with kids and babies, I hate it when books have too much going on with animals. Now, I know some of you likely think I'm being picky, but hear me out. Livvy lives on a co-op, and she brings her farm animals with her. But not only does she bring them with her, she decides that they can't handle being outside and they must stay in the house. We're talking goats, pigs, peacocks, dogs, a parrot, alpacas, and I'm sure some others, but I began to black out at that point. These animals tear the ever-living shit out of the house, destroying Sean's work, and she just shrugs and laughs. That annoyed me to no end. Also, these animals literally forced me to look at my husband and say "I've never seen such epic animal cockblocking in all my life." Every time Sean and Livvy tried to get something going, one of the animals would butt in between them, the parrot would start chattering, or maybe the goats took a crap. But the biggie: a love scene between alpacas. No. I'm not joking.


"With a back-shivering grunt, the alpaca removed himself from his lady, then took to preening around the room as if he'd just performed the greatest service to the world."




 No. No. No. No. No. I do not want to think about that alpaca climaxing, but now I can't stop thinking about it. I still need to gag, y'all. I get that it was funny, but I would've rather focused on the couple.


Now. I know that was quite a tangent I went on. All of the animal business may not bother the majority of readers. This reader prefers to focus on the humans. Overall, I did like What a Woman Wants. The writing was quite charming and I did like the story. If you don't mind the animals, you may love this.





The Manley Maids Series
What a Woman Wants (Manley Maids, #1)  What a Woman Needs (Manley Maids, #2)
(covers lead to GoodReads)


Giveaway
I have an ARC and a finished copy to give away.
US only; must be 18+ years of age to enter


Purchase Links
About the author
Judi FennellI have been writing for as long as I can remember, winning my first writing award in a second grade Caldecott Medal contest. Readers' Digest gave me my very first publishing credit in April, 1994, and I was hooked. I seemed to have followed writing contests around, being a finalist in such online contests as American Title III, sponsored by Romantic Times BOOK review Magazine and Dorchester Publishing, and two First Chapters contests, sponsored by Gather.com and Simon & Schuster/Pocket Books.
My imaginary friend was Casper the Friendly Ghost. The little ghoul even had a special place set for him at our dinner table and got blamed for many of my childhood mishaps. I grew up watching Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie and The Addams Family--my mom looked like Elizabeth Montgomery and I had a special Barbie outfit that looked like Morticia Addams' dress. My favorite books are Bewitching by Jill Barnett and A Knight In Shining Armor, by Jude Devereaux, so it should come as no surprise that I like to write tongue-in-cheek lighthearted paranormals.
I love pop culture and manipulating language, so you'll find lots of puns, double entrendre, plays-on-words, alliteration, clich├ęs, and twisting of phrases, as well as several one-liners in my stories that give me a few chuckles. I studied Spanish at Penn State (Go Lions!), lived in Spain and traveled throughout that beautiful country.
I've always written and still have my journal from fourth grade where, even then, my stories were full of fantastical creatures, whimsy and magic. I wrote my first romance in 9th grade and still have that story in my memory chest. Even back then I dreamed of being a writer.
Now with kids, a husband, a house, a social life (Go Survivor Girls!), and two cocker spaniels named Vixen and Raven, I get to live my dream of being a writer!

I've also published, under the name J.A. Fenn, a horror anthology. Yes, a bit different from light-hearted romance, but just as much fun to write. Hope you check out Off The Beaten Path, A Terrifying Tales Anthology.

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33 comments:

  1. Yes this book is for me. Sounds like a great book.

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  2. Ohhhh, this sabotage plot sounds good! I think it'd make a great romantic comedy movie material. Looks like Livvy dreams of owning a zoo O.o "I've never seen such epic animal cockblocking in all my life." OMG HAHAHAHAHAHA :'D except for the animals part I'd love to read this :D lols

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  3. Andrea this review made me laugh out loud! It sounds like a cute read but your rant on the animals had me cracking up. In all honesty though, I love animals and I even think this sounds like too much. Animal interfering would be funny once maybe twice but then there comes a point where it needs to stop. Great review.

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  4. *stares* Alpacas needs love too? I think I prefer animal sex to stay in my monster erotica.

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  5. LOL!! The whole animal thing was pretty darned funny, though I felt the same way about the alpaca sex. Um...no. I liked the scavenger hunt part of it!

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  6. Sounds really good, though I have to agree with you that her having the animals in the house and allowing them to destroy things and interfere with the romance might be a bit much.

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  7. BWAHAHAHA! Now, all I can picture in my head is alpacas mating. BWAHAHAHAA!

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  8. I don't know that I'd think the alpaca sex was funny, Andrea. But reading what you had to say about it was hysterical! LOL :) Yeah, I'm thinking I might prefer my reads to focus on humans too. ;) I'm glad you got some enjoyment out of this one. The premise does sound cute. Great giggle-inducing review!! :)

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  9. It definitely sounds like a book for me!

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  10. This definitely sounds like a great read!!! Thanks for sharing : )

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  11. I like books like these, because there are days I need something funny and light.

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  12. I've seen a couple reviews of it but your's
    is the first to mention alpaca sex! O.O Maybe I'll skip that page. . . .

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  13. I have tears in my eyes laughing!! Loved the picture choice for your reaction lol! I almost wanted to read this one because I didn't realize it was the alpaca book. Thanks for the warning. I'm scarred for life

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  14. I love animals and I love when they are in stories but…I hate when people are wacky about it. Like them destroying everything and she laughs it off. No. Just no. And that alpaca sex thing…ewwww

    I don't think I would like the heroine. I just dislike that kind of random attitude in general. I know it's supposed to be cute and show a free spirit btu it pisses me off whether it's animals or kooky relatives etc...

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  15. It definitely sounds like a book I'd like to read. What a great idea, men as maids. This would be a real fun read. Thanks for having the giveaway.

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  16. Bwahahaaha! Animals! Dude I feel the same way and yes, the alpaca line is gag-worthy.

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  17. I have seen this book around and you're so right. The cover is so cute and the story sounds really sweet. Although that scene sounds like something I don't want to read. Great review, Andrea :)

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  18. Sounds like a book that I need to read to escape all the HR I've been reading. A good contemporary romance novel is what I need now to give me a change. Thanks for the review...I really want to read it now

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  19. Yes, I think What a Woman Wants sounds like a really fun story and I'd love to read it.

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  20. Lol! I'm not sure, I'm imagining a llama now....

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  21. I've been curious about this one. I don't think I would be crazy about all the animals either.

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  22. Really? Um...I love animals and they normally don't affect my reading but um...that may be serious overkill there.

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  23. This sounds like a really cute story that I would enjoy reading just for fun. I'm with you about the animals. One or two is ok, but a whole barn yard full is a little much!!

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  24. Bahaha 'animal cock-blocking' made me laugh so hard!!! I totally get what your saying though, and while I don't mind stories with animals for sanctuaries etc, this sounds like it's been taken a little to far - animal sex is just...no lol

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  25. LOL, alpaca love scene huh? Sounds like a cute story overall

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  26. I added this to my TBR list....my "gotta read real soon" TBR list!

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  27. Yes, it is. Seems like a book I would read. :)

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  28. Funny Review Andrea! Yeah, I wouldn't want to hear about an Alpacas climax either! Animals can add a little charm to a story, but I prefer to focus on the humans also, and the animal cock blocking would frustrate me as well!

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  29. The book for me? I don't know, but I want to read it to decide!

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  30. I'm not exactly sure what to say here. Hmmm

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  31. It does sound like something I would read, I love that they dressed like maids

    but wait...

    What?

    LMAO I am on you on that one, I think that would probably have me shuddering as well

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  32. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  33. thanks for the head's up about alpaca sex, though i don't think it's turned me off completely to this book.

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