Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Catch a Mate (Gena Showalter)

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Catch a Mate is a company wherein wives, girlfriends and fiancees who suspect their other halves of cheating select a woman - bait - to catch him out. The bait always catches the man out, and relationships always end as a result. Jillian, one of the "baits" has a personal vested interest in her job - she caught her father cheating when she was just a little girl and it sparked off a suicide attempt from her mother when she found out. This event led Gillian to detest and mistrust men, and finds a grim sense of comfort to reveal men for what she sees them as: lying, cheating scum. However, her life is complicated with the arrival of a new piece of bait. Not just any bait, it's male bait. His name is Marcus, and he is British, well-hung, arrogant, and by all intents and purposes, extremely bangable. Ooh la la.

Rather predictably, the two fight like cat and mouse, mainly to cover up the intense sexual attraction that they feel toward each other. Both find their attempts to mix business and displeasure increasingly infuriating, and we the audience know that nothing will be resolved without a drawn out, cheesy shag. Meanwhile, we have an engaging subplot featuring Jilian's brother and her best friend and their emotions towards each other.

On first look, this book looks no different to the countless chicklits out there. However, Showalter is canny enough not to allow it to veer to the predicted, at least, not without throwing a few convolutions first. Furthermore, she truly delves into the mindsets of her characters, allowing us to see what they feel. The comedy of errors in the novel are all highly amusing, but it is the human thoughts that make the novel so ultimately fulfilling. Sexy, funny, clever and sharp, Catch a Mate is highly recommended.