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Small Town, USA

Posted by Mistress on January 16, 2009


I’m the definitive city girl. I don’t know anyone in my neighborhood by name; who hasn’t lived there for more than 15 years, not even my neighbors. I direct murderous thoughts at tourists during the Holiday season when their gawking slows me down. Nature is not my friend, though I like to pretend. One Summer, a friend and I decided to explore Prospect Park every weekend. We planned to follow the different routes till we’d been to every landmark and area. Our venture lasted all of 3 hours, when we broke for lunch at a pinic table, that I discovered 15 mins later was infested with ants… EVIL RED BITING ANTS.

The jewel on the clichéd NYC gurl crown is my hobby of surrounding myself with people, then talking to no one. I shit you not, I’m one of those freaks who will stay at a crowded café for hours reading, studying human behavior, or blogging. I enjoy few things more than the prattle of life flowing around me nonstop; with no need/expectation for me to engage in it. It’s my meditation and never fails to entertain. It’s very hard to picture myself anywhere else, this level of anonymity is addictive.

So it boggles the mind, why I lurve small town contemporaries so much. I ❤ tales about a city girl forced to move to a small bum fuck town for whatever complicated circumstances. I’m even willing overlook usual annoyances like secret babies, cowboys, single mothers, and series about brothers. Bring on the cheesy town names Temptation, Texas; Justice, Tennessee; West Bubble Fuck, North Carolina; or Scandal, Maryland. The struggle to find their place in the fishbowl/create their own business, pie competitions/recipes, the square dances, and costume parades; (though I normally wouldn’t give a fig) tell me more I’m fascinated. Oh and I can’t forget the hunky down home boys who got away. Can there ever be too many naughty small town sheriffs or mayors? Nunh uh says I.

I’m coming our of the contemporary niche closet, I dig small town romance. They’re the book equivalent of watching a Sandra Bullock movie.

Here are some of my favorites:

Nobody’s baby but Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

Physics professor Dr. Jane Darlington spends her 34th birthday in tears. She wants a baby, but not a husband. Where can she find an average or, preferably, stupid man? She decides that Cal Bonner, legendary quarterback for the Chicago Stars is perfect. Jane sets her plan into action and after some trail and error she succeeds. But the results are more than she bargained for when Cal discovers her duplicity. How can a football player with an interfering family and a nerdy professor who has never known family love ever fall in love? With lots of honesty, understanding and a whole lot of humor. Don’t miss this one! It’s filled with engaging characters, laughs galore and a feel-good ending.- Amazon.com Review

Truly Madly Yours by Rachel Gibson

Delaney Shaw plans to get in and out of her hometown in the time it takes to attend her stepfather Henry’s funeral, read the will, and refill the tank of her Miata. Even the pleas of her mother and the tension of an unfinished fling with Henry’s bastard son, Nick Allegrezza, can’t keep her in Truly, Idaho. But Henry had other plans in mind: Nick and Delaney’s inheritance is contingent on her staying in Truly for a year, and him having no “sexual relationship” with Delaney. What’s a girl to do? Delaney digs in, starts up a hair salon and prepares to grit her teeth for as long as it takes.
Small-town life is everything that Delaney fears it to be: high school rivalries and old rumors about Delaney and Nick resurrect themselves with predictable immediacy. Gossip nears the truth as the sexual sparks fly between Nick and Delaney. Nick’s reputation as a ladies man hasn’t changed, either, and Delaney reminds herself that he can love her and leave her just as brutally as he did 10 years ago. But when the two find themselves in close proximity, all their best intentions fly out the window and intense passion consumes them. – Amazon.com Review

Pretty Bad by Shirley Jump

Madison Worth may be your average over-the-hill, overpaid top model, but she is not a diva. The cake throwing incident at the New York Fall Fashion Show? Completely justified. It wasn’t her fault Kate Moss’ face got in the way. But the fallout has her deep in social Siberia – literally – on a dairy farm in Podunk, Massachusetts. Why? To get a job of course! As spokesmodel for the Cheese Pleese Company. (Talk about eating humble pie.) And her new boss, Jack Pleeseman, leaves a lot – six-foot two inches worth – to be desired…Rugged and tanned in a deliciously hard-earned way, not to mention runway gorgeous, Jack Pleeseman wants to overhaul his 160-year-old family business. After some lengthy research in the pages of the “Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue”, he’s found the ideal candidate for a spokesmodel. But after running his eyes up her 20-story legs, what he finds is a beautiful, tall, spoiled rich girl in a need of a major attitude adjustment. A farm could be just the charm school to set her straight. Trouble is, the cocks are crowing, the cows are mooing, and sexy Jack can’t help from wooing…

Natural Born Charmer by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

It wasn’t every day a guy saw a headless beaver marching down the side of a road, not even in Chicago Stars quarterback Dean Robillard’s larger-than-life world. He slammed on the brakes of his brand-new Aston Martin Vanquish and pulled over in front of her.
The beaver marched right past, her big, flat tail bouncing in the gravel, and her small, sharp nose stuck up in the air. Way up. The beaver looked highly pissed . . .
She was definitely a girl beaver because her beaver head was missing, revealing sweaty, dark hair pulled into a scraggly ponytail. He’d been praying for a little distraction from his own depressing company, so he threw open the door and stepped out onto the shoulder of the Colorado road . . .
Funny, sexy, and touching—Natural Born Charmer is the unforgettable love story of a golden boy who might be losing his luster and a spirited woman who’s learned never to depend on anyone but herself.

Do they make your heart smile also? Or do I need help and a firm slap? Am I missing any other feel good Small town contemporaries, on your list? Suggestions are always appreciated.

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4 Responses to “Small Town, USA”

  1. Katiebabs a.k.a KB said

    Rachel Gibson and SEP write some of the best small town romances 😀

  2. Mistress said

    Welcome to the club KB. One of Us! One of Us! = )

  3. Katie said

    I’ve got one for you. It’s called The Observatory. I have it in hardcover. If you haven’t read it, e-me your addy, and I’ll give it to you.

  4. Mistress said

    That sounds familiar. I think I have read it. Is it about twins, set upstate NY? If so I cried my eyes out,lol.

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