Review + Giveaway: Neurotica

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Welcome to my tour stop for Neurotica by Eliza Gordon. This is an adult romantic comedy and the tour runs Sept. 22-Oct. 3 with mostly reviews and a few interviews, guest posts and excerpts thrown in. To check out all the tour stops, visit the tour page.

cbbtourhostTitle: Neurotica
Author: Eliza Gordon
Publisher: West 26th Street Press
Release Date: August 2014
Length: 312 pages
Series?: no
Genre: Romance, Comedy
Source: CBB Book Promotions

Find the book: Goodreads | Amazon 

*****Synopsis*****

If you find yourself talking to Jayne Dandy, keep the conversation on Star Wars and rubber ducks—best not to mention men, dating, or S-E-X. Because Jayne is fine with the way things are: writer of obituaries and garage sale ads by day, secret scribe of adventures in distant galaxies by night. But her crippling fear of intimacy has made her the butt of jokes since forever, and hiding behind her laptop isn’t going to get her lightsaber lit.
After her therapist recommends that she write erotica as a form of exposuretherapy, Jayne joins forces with pen and paper to combat the demons that won’t let her kiss and tell. Unexpectedly downsized at work, she adopts a pseudonym and secretly self-publishes one of her naughty books to make ends meet. When her adorable, long-time friend Luke, co-owner of the popular Portland food truck LukePiewalker’s, hears she’s been demoted, he insists on hiring her to sling éclairs and turnovers at his side. Her secret must be kept, but sparks ignite between them, sending Jayne and her X-Wing into a tailspin that will either make her face down her neuroses or trigger a meltdown of Death Star proportions.

*****Review*****

I loved this book. It was hilarious, and all of the characters fit together really well in their specific roles in relation to the main character, Jayne.

“Sex smells funny.”

Dr. McCoy chokes on her coffee. “I’d say ‘come again,’ but I’m afraid to.” She dabs at sputtered drops before they soak her blouse. “How would you know, Jayne?”

Jayne is…odd. She sees a therapist, Dr. McCoy, about her neurosis about sex. She admits there’s no reason for her hold up – she wasn’t abused or anything. She blames it on the church ladies from her childhood and how they fire-and-brimstoned the talk about “the birds and the bees.” Jayne’s sister, Margaret (known as Maggot) and brother Frankie (known as Farting Frankie) don’t have issues, but Jayne is working through it.

Awesome. I can now say “boobs” out loud without begging forgiveness from a bearded, robed man living in a posh, pillowy cloud house. Money well spent.

Jayne also has a thing about ducks. She helped rescue some ducks in the local park, and works at a shelter every weekend taking care of them. She even collects rubber ducks. Throughout the novel, she gets a few unique rubber ducks from various characters.

Jayne’s family knows about her fear, and so does her best friend, Gretchen. Gretchen comes from a wealthy family and only works to pass off to her family that she’s productive (even though they pay the bills). She works with Jayne at a newspaper office under Mr. Clark, where Jayne writes the ads and obits and Gretchen has a feature about fashion. After the paper’s food critic quit, newbie Holden is set out in the world with no idea of what he’s walking in to.

The friendship that Jayne and Gretchen have is so incredibly odd. They are opposites in almost every sense, but they compliment each other so well. Gretchen is on the opposite end of the spectrum from Jayne in terms of sex. Gretchen is daring and bold and outgoing, and Jayne is homebody-ish and likes the regular, like going to Luke’s.

What is it with guys and long eyelashes? I spend six minutes per eyeball every morning just to get my nine eyelashes to look double that number.

Luke is a local food trailer entrepreneur…who has a sister named Leia. And they are twins. Their parents are Star Wars fans, just like Luke and Jayne. Luke and Jayne get along really well, even though Jayne is having to keep herself in check. It seems that Jayne and Gretchen eat at Luke’s for breakfast and lunch almost every day, and eventually Holden joins in. Luke’s food is legendary in the book – he’s won many foodie awards and been featured all over, and even invited as a vendor for Comic Con.

Gretchen opens the paper sack and shoves her patrician nose inside to suck in the chocolatey fumes. “Oh God, these are going to be good.” 

“Don’t get boogers on the brownies.” 

“Booger brownies are my favorite,” she says.

Unbeknownst to all, Jayne has actually taken to writing sci-fi fan fiction on the internet under the name Jaina Jacen, and she’s pretty popular. There are chapters in the book of Jaina’s new work, Eider, which Jayne later actually gives to someone.

She’s also started writing sci-fi romances with some super steamy scenes. After bad foodie reviews at the newspaper, a restauranteer has taken to sabotaging the building…and when things blow up, Jayne’s left with few options.

But thanks to one deranged chef with a knack for pipe bombs – it’s amazing how nuts a man can become when your paper writes the review that allegedly sinks his restaurant – Surly Brian is now a necessity.

So she does something crazy, and Gretchen helps Jayne keep her cover. It is going brilliantly, and Gretchen is full-on dedicated to helping Jayne, who is supposed to be taking up her author’s pen again, all while on the sly.

As her friendship with Luke progresses, Jayne is hoping he’ll never find out her secret…that no one will ever find out her secret. She gets a hard lesson from Dr. McCoy and Luke about being true to herself, which I would have liked to have seen a little more development of, but it was still given appropriate life in the book.

The funny thing about happiness – it sometimes sneaks up, taps you on the shoulder, and then tiptoes away, leaving only shadowy footprints behind.

Two things that I felt made this book were Jayne’s narration and inner dialogue, and the easy banter between characters – especially Jayne, Luke, and Gretchen. Their characters and relationships are captured so well in the novel, it’s almost effortless in how they interact.

“It’s January. We don’t have to shave in the winter. Or didn’t you get the memo?” 

She helps herself to my supply of feminine hygiene. “The only memo I’m concerned with is the one where Operation Get Jayne Laid is a go for launch.”

“It’s speed dating, not speed copulating.” 

“What do you think speed dating leads to?” 

“Dinner. A movie. Two years of holding hands before we going our separate ways.”

“You’re a terrible Jedi.”

“I’m still in training.”

 ****About the Author*****

Eliza-Gordon-208x300A purveyor of fictions, Eliza Gordon has excellent taste in books, shoes, movies, and friends, and questionable sanity in the realm of love. Best leave that one alone.

Find the author: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

*****Giveaway*****

There is a $25 Amazon gift card up for grabs in this giveaway.

Click here to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!

3 thoughts on “Review + Giveaway: Neurotica

  1. I’m so glad you enjoyed this one too! I just got a kick out of Gretchen too. Their friendship reminded me of mine with my best friend. I’m the prude and she’s the total opposite. She was constantly embarrassing me! She lives in NC now so I never see her, but that’s definitely how I remember things!

  2. […] Neurotica is hilarious and sweet. Jayne Dandy cannot talk about S-E-X, but she can write it! When her job is downsized, she follows her therapist’s recommendations to write erotica as exposuretherapy…and she secretly self-publishes it! Trying to help Jayne make ends meet, her friend and food truck owner Luke insists on hiring her. Things start to heat up behind Jayne’s screen! Read my review here. […]

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