New Release Review | The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

Kiss Quotient.jpgThe Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
The Kiss Quotient #1
Contemporary Romance

Berkley | June 5, 2018

About the Book:  A heartwarming and refreshing debut novel that proves one thing: there’s not enough data in the world to predict what will make your heart tick.

Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases–a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.

It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice–with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan–from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…

Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but to crave all the other things he’s making her feel. Soon, their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…

amazon2 bn2

I feel like The Kiss Quotient is a pretty popular new release, but my reading radar never picked it up.  It wasn’t until my good friend Angie told me about it, having loved it herself, and I read the synopsis that I know I had to have it.  In fact, I ordered it within a week or two, knowing I was going to read it immediately.  I’d fallen in love with the blurb, and I didn’t even worry I’d be let down.

My flourishing psychic abilities proved completely accurate, because I adored this book.

I loved Stella.  She was a unique and interesting heroine, but what really sold me on The Kiss Quotient as a whole was Michael.  Stella’s challenges throughout the book are the obvious conflict, the ones you recognize first.  It was given to us right in the first chapter.  Michael also had his own challenges, quieter challenges, that he overcame in a more subtle way.  He also worked through those issues while he was helping to build Stella’s self-confidence.  He questioned the start of their growing relationship, doubted himself, and yet never stopped being gentle and sweet with Stella.  He never put his fears ahead of what she needed, and while he may have questioned his motivation, I certainly never did.  From my perspective, as the audience, we fall in love with Stella right off the bat, so every time Michael showed compassion and love for her we fell for him too, because of how he treated this amazing woman.  It made their relationship feel effortless, despite their roadblocks.

I also want to talk about Michael’s family, since they were the most influential secondary characters.  Basically, I loved them.  I loved how they interacted with our hero, but again I especially love how they embraced Stella as his partner.  They weren’t put off by the quirky symptom’s of her Asperger’s, mostly.  They recognized her worth immediately, and tucked her into their fold.  It made their hold over Michael more understandable, because they were wonderful.

Actually, Stella’s parents were pretty nice too.  In the best stories nobody is perfect, and none of the extended family was either.  That’s okay.  I prefer it that way.  They were, however, supportive and loving.  It’s definitely a plus in my book, because it seems like authors today choose to have one ‘bad’ family and I’m definitely over that trope.

The only reason I’m not giving The Kiss Quotient 5 full stars is because I think the ending was a little too neat.  Every problem hindering Stella and Michael’s personal life seemed to just go away.  With the wave of the author’s hand, like a fairy godmother, all Michael’s problems vanished.  Maybe I’m too cynical but it felt way too fanciful.  It was too perfect to be perfect.

Still, definitely a solid A on the grading scale.  I can’t wait to read where Helen Hoang goes with Khai in the sequel, The Bride Test.

Rating: 4_5 feather


About Birdie

Don’t look for her in any bar, club, crazy raging party, or anywhere there may be a large gathering of strangers. She’s more likely to be found tucked into the corner of the couch watching one of her favorite shows, or preferably under a comforter with her current novel.

11 Responses

  1. I haven’t heard of this book either– but it sounds beautiful! I’m not surprised you enjoyed it this much. 😀 Does this book wrap up neatly enough it could be read as a standalone? I don’t like to read incomplete series…but you made me want to read this book immediately! O_o

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  2. elissa

    I recently read this too and loved it for all the same reasons. But took off a star because it felt like the author wrote the epilogue first and then never changed it even through all of the other chapter revisions. Too cute and too neat, and not in the best way.. but it didn’t detract from how good the rest of it was overall.

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  3. Just saw this book for cheap on Kindle and when I read this review, I knew I had to check it out. I also dislike the trope where one family is ‘good’ and one family is ‘bad’ so I’m really happy to hear that trope was avoided. Great review!

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