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Book Review: The Purim Fling

I picked up The Purim Fling because I was looking for romance novels based around, well, any Jewish holiday other than Hanukkah. (Not that I dislike Hanukkah – it’s just definitely the most represented Jewish holiday in romancelandia by a lot.) And hey, with Purim coming up, this one seemed like a good one to start with!

The Purim Fling is the story of Jenna, who’s living with her parents after she graduated from college, and Asher, who’s in Boston for business. His assistant Golda is Jenna’s neighbor and former friend, and he goes along with her to a Purim masquerade party at their synagogue.

Of course, Jenna and Asher immediately fall into mutual lust… and end up having sex in a closet.

Now, I have nothing against a nice one-night stand, but it would have been nice to have actually seen it. I prefer sex in my romance novels to either be explicit or to be way less of the plot than it was in this book. Instead all of it – and there was a lot – was mentioned but never shown.

But that wasn’t the biggest problem with the book.

The thing is, I liked Jenna and mostly liked Asher (while he was clearly trying to let Jenna say no, he was… let’s just, not always good at it – so let’s call this a trigger warning for stalkery behavior, which is not cool).

Dude, she said no, don’t keep asking. I get that she’s actually interested, but no.

I even liked a bunch of the side characters – Noah was fun, Nora was great (though why the author is clearly pairing characters named Noah and Nora in the third book… for which she got the summary wrong on Amazon… I don’t know), Rachel was cool, Jenna’s parents were very realistic in that Jewish parent way, Golda’s parents were fine…

Golda herself was an utter bitch who clearly only existed to be a problem for literally everybody else in the entire book…and probably future ones too.

And since she doesn’t have her own book in the series, I’m betting she stays that bitch with no redemption, which kind of pisses me off. I get that she wasn’t a nice person, believe me I get that. But there’s not nice and there’s “exists solely to be a problem.” Particularly since her bad side was presented in a particularly feminine way – she’s the girly-girl, the one who spends all her time on hair and makeup and all that.

But Golda wasn’t even the biggest problem.

No, that was the ending.

Which had two serious issues.

Problem number one was that, even after Jenna said no a second time, Asher remained stuck on her and wondering how he could see her again.

Problem number two…

Well, Jenna made progress in her personal life, and Asher figured out he truly wanted Jenna after all.

But at the end of the book, they weren’t together.

This is marketed as a romance, which means the couple needs to either end up happily ever after or, at the very least, happy for now. I’m pretty sure it’s resolved in the second book in the series, which is a sequel with Jenna and Asher (which I will not be buying), but that’s still not cool – this is a very short book (53 pages according to Amazon) and really could have had at least a tentatively happy ending, if not been combined with the next book into one longer story.

Romance is romance.

End it happily.

While there was some good (particularly Jenna’s personal storyline), in the end it was mostly bad, and therefore this book gets

Two Stars

If you really want it, you can get it here.

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