|Ariadne ďAndyĒ McAllisterís aunt has gone missing while attending a
for-women-only spa where participants are encouraged to explore their
inner goddess. This unexpected absence wouldnít necessarily signify
much were it not for the death of another guest at the spa.
Suspecting foul play, Andyís family sends her to investigate.
Andy would rather be taking a holiday and pursuing a fling in
Acapulco, but family is family. Thatís also the reason why she agrees
to go in disguise. She ties her hair back in a bun and wears
unflattering clothes. She also dons coke-bottle glasses, which ensure
she stumbles awkwardly around.
Undercover agent Dillon Roth immediately suspects something isnít
quite right about the recent arrival. Does the spa management have
reason to believe that he is something more than a kilt-clad
attendant, hired to cater to all the whims of his assigned goddess?
Or is this nubile nymph the employee of some government agency, which
doesnít trust him to do his job and uncover the mysterious goings-on?
Dillonís ego, along with his body, took a bad bruising several months
ago when he fell into the trap set by a luscious but treacherous
female spy. Luck was on his side, and he managed to save the day.
Still, with all the havoc wrecked on his body and on his reputation,
heís worried this gig is his last chance at his job. He is determined
to resist Andyís seductive charms and keep her out of his
investigation. Then, another dead body is found.
Andy and Dillon are heart-warming characters. Both indulge in highly
entertaining snarky commentary, but they are not so embittered as to
miss the nice things in life. Andyís ease with her body is appealing.
Then again, as a Hollywood stuntswoman, she has little to complain
about. Dillon is another matter. His aches, pains and scars are
frequently mentioned; other infirmities loom largely when hiking with
Andy. Far from making him appear wimpy and weak, they turn him into
something touching and real. Despite the Brava label, sex between
them is refreshingly down-to-earth, honest and healthy.
Bruce has a wonderful hand with witty commentary and funny dialogue,
but she does engage in a little too much slapstick humor. I mean,
honestly, how could anyone not see past Andyís disguise? And the only
reason why I wasnít completely turned off by elderly widows goosing
practically naked, brawny men is because the wealthy pensioners were
quite sweet. I enjoyed Bruceís fun with New Age establishments much
more. The titles of some of the seminars say it all: Jump-Start the
New You; Juice Up Your Jealousy; Banished to the Bower of Bliss.
The mystery does not hold any surprises. Still, like the rest of the
novel, it is competent and hides no glaring flaws. Who Wants to be a
Sex Goddess isnít outstanding or particularly original, but it is
well written and fun enough for a good laugh and a quick read.