Electrify Me by Bibi Rizer

Electrify Me by Bibi Rizer(Cover picture courtesy of Goodreads.)

All Gloria Falcon wants is to have a nice New Year’s Eve with a nice man. Is that so much to ask? But after seven disastrous New Years in a row, this year she’s trying something different. Committed to spending her New Year’s Eve manning the phones at a suicide crisis phone line, Gloria is sure the karma she earns will break her New Year’s curse. But when a blackout cancels her night of philanthropy, rather than spend the night moping in the dark, she goes on a ride along with the cute electric company lineman who failed to fix the power.

Charlie Zhang is not much of a New Year believer either. He’s coasting through life after being discharged from the army and trying not to let his cynicism of pretty much everything define him. When Gloria Falcon climbs into Charlie’s life, and his repair truck, neither of them expect this to be the New Year’s Eve that changes their minds, and their fate, forever.

[Full disclosure: I requested and received a free ebook through Masquerade Tours’ Reader Round-Up program in exchange for an honest review.]

I picked Electrify Me because I was looking for some light-hearted reading.  I didn’t really expect much and unfortunately the book didn’t deliver all that much.

The characters are okay.  Gloria herself is much more realistic than Charlie.  She’s a down on her luck 24 year old woman who was born on New Years and seems to be cursed to have bad things happen to her.  In the beginning of the novella you can really feel her exasperation with her situation but also her sense of humour about the whole thing.  She has a “How could it possibly get worse?” attitude that sees her through some pretty awful mishaps on that cursed day.  What I really didn’t like about her character was that she was volunteering to man a suicide crisis phone in order to help her karma.  That’s rather a glib attitude to take toward suicidal people and their problems; it really didn’t feel like her heart was in it.  However, it was a part of her character and didn’t really affect my enjoyment of her character.

Charlie, however, was rather dull.  You could exchange him for pretty much any other romantic interest in any other erotica or romance novel and you wouldn’t notice a difference.  (But to be fair this is a little more multicultural than usual because he is Asian.)  He’s boring and polite and although he’s physically attractive he has the sort of personality that induces drowsiness because he’s so boring and perfect.  He’s hot because he’s training to be a fireman, he volunteers for shifts on New Years for extra pay and credit at work and he always helps out whenever he can.  Those are awesome traits and would be kind of refreshing because I hate the whole ‘bad boy’ trope but at the same time, he doesn’t have much in the way of anything interesting.  His conversations with Gloria are pretty predictable and he really just comes off as bland.  Nothing really stands out about his character.

The writing was generally okay but some of the sex scenes caused me to laugh out loud because sometimes Bibi Rizer gets a little creative with her descriptions and strays into purple prose territory.  Most notably: “Kissing Charlie feels healthy.  Nutritious even.  As though I’m getting vitamins and minerals and will wake up with thicker, shinier hair and skin that’s twenty-five percent more luminous.”  It kind of killed the mood for me.  But the rest of the sex scenes were generally okay, if a little boring.

As for the plot, well, it was a little predictable.  Usually awesome writing would make up for that but since the writing was ‘meh’ the plot came across as ‘meh’ as well.  From the time Gloria and Charlie meet you pretty much know what’s going to happen but the other plot events are just as predictable.  I know you don’t generally read romance or erotica for the plot but it just left me bored.

Basically, this book was ‘meh’.  It wasn’t terrible but it doesn’t stand out from the crowd.

I give this book 3/5 stars.

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