{Review} RHYMES WITH CUPID by Anna Humphrey

O P E N I N G   L I N E:

  ACCORDING TO THE ITTY Bitty Pocket Guide (Secrets of the Heart edition), Cupid is the god of love. He's the son of Aprhodite, the goddess of love and beauty, and Ares, the god of war. He's beautiful and mischievous and winged like an angel.
  But at the SouthSide Mall in Middleford, Mained, Cupid was a far, far cry from the golden-haird god that the pocket guide (aisle four, right across from the ceramic clowns) described. He stood on the counter of Goodman's Gifts and Stationary near hte cash register--an overweight battery-powered baby doll with shiny red hearts on his diaper. When you pushed his belly button, he winked a creepy mechanical eye at you and started to sing along to music that came out of a speaker in his butt--the chorus of the classic 1960s Motown hit, "Do You Love Me (Now That I Can Dance)." And the doll could dance, in a way. You had to give him that.

(pg. 1 US paperback edition)

This review was first posted at ABS on November 25, 2011.

“I picked out a card with a simple red heart on the front, set against a silver backdrop. 'This is the least bad one we have.' I handed it to him and watched him open it.

'It's blank,' he observed.

'Exactly,' I said. 'If you like someone, you should care enough to write your own message. Or at least, that's what I've always thought.'

~Elyse and Patrick, RHYMES WITH CUPID

If you're a fan of contemporary YA romances such as ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS by Stephanie Perkins, you'll really enjoy this as well! Anna Humphrey's RHYMES WITH CUPID is exactly what you would expect: A light-hearted, feel-good romance. Every once in a while, it's nice to read something sweet and predictable, and this book is as gooey-good as the ice cream sundae on its cover!

Main character Elyse is a cynic and doesn't believe in love after a relationship that ends badly. She works at a mall gift shop and is forced to promote sappy Valentine's Day cards and singing Cupid dolls. Her co-worker Dina, however, is really into the holiday despite also not having a boyfriend. Dina is emotionally attached to a guy who always blows her off, and Elyse decides to get her over him once and for all. She decides to hook her up with a guy named Patrick who comes into the shop one day looking for a new pen. He's pretty cute and, as luck would have it, he's Elyse's next-door neighbor, too. The only problem? Patrick only has eyes for Elyse...and Elyse might be starting to have second thoughts on pairing him up with Dina, even though the last thing she wants is another relationship.

A book like this one is the reason I often prefer contemporary romances to the paranormal/fantasy insta-love syndrome. I prefer it when relationships grow gradually and bonds build through friendship before blooming into something more. This is one reason I liked ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS so much. I've been trying to replicate the feeling I had when reading that and so far, RHYMES WITH CUPID has come the closest. There are some really great scenes between the two main characters that are completely re-readable. Granted, there are times Elyse annoys me because she's so gung-ho on swearing off love. How can she resist Patrick? He's incredible; I'd totally date a Patrick if he was in my life. I mean, he's such a good guy that he will stay parked in a parking lot to make sure she gets on the bus okay at night even though they don't know one another. Totally sweet, right? At the same time, there are reasons for the things Elyse does and it's commendable that she's willing to sacrifice her own happiness for a friend's. If you're looking for a tasty, sweet read this Valentine's Day, this one might be just what your sweet tooth is looking for!

Content Ratings: highlight between ( ) for details

Romance: PG ( Kissing )
Language: G ( Tame words such as "jerkwad" are used. 
Violence: --
Other:  PG13 ( Mention of secondary characters at keg parties with underage drinking and their smoking habits, but not something either main character partakes in. )
C O V E R   D E S I G N:

I honestly think the book covers for this book and PAST PERFECT by Leila Sales (guest post and review HERE) should be flip-flopped. In PAST PERFECT, the main character, Chelsea, and her best friend Fiona are ice cream connoisseurs and the book takes place during the summer. This breezy cover would be perfect, right? RHYMES WITH CUPID, on the other hand, takes place in February. Okay, so maybe a rain jacket is still a little inappropriate, but you could do the same cover with snow. The cover never really jived with PAST PERFECT despite how much I enjoyed it.

That said, the cover is really cute and breezy, easily ear-marked as a light-hearted romance, so it's perfectly suited for its genre!

O F F I C I A L   I N F O:

Author: Anna Humphrey
Release Date: Out Dec. 21, 2010
Publisher: Harper Teen
Received: Purchased


Goodman's Gifts & Stationery Store

February 14
Cashier: Elyse

3 boxes of heart-shaped chocolate . . . $12.00
Chocolate is the only good thing about this nauseating holiday.
4 containers of candy hearts . . . $5.00
Ever since my ex cheated on me, I've sworn off love. Too bad my new neighbor Patrick didn't get the memo.
1 Valentine's Day card . . . $4.50
I'm not interested. Although, he is pretty cute. And sweet. And funny.
1 singing Cupid doll (promotional item) . . . $0.00
Stupid Cupid! Point your arrows at someone else. . . .
Subtotal . . . $21.50

It's going to be a complicated Valentine's Day.