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REVIEW: Date Me Baby One More Time by Stephanie Rowe

Dear Ms Rowe,

Date Me Baby One More TimeAfter having heard such great things about your book, I finally a) got my hands on a copy and b) had a moment to read it. It’s good. Really good, but….ah the buts in life.

Yes, it’s funny but it takes a little while to take off. Or it did for me. Plus there are a lot of characters to keep track of, each with his or her own backstory and place in this story. Often I had to stop and go back to remember who someone was and why he/she
was important. And the convoluted plot got even more convoluted as the story went on. This is definitely not a book to put down for any length of time.

I do agree with my blogging partner that each character was distinct. If not, it would have been even more confusing trying to sort everyone out. And I’ll give it to you that in the end, you wove that plot into a whole which made sense. And I am looking forward to reading the next book (due this autumn). Plus it’s one of the funniest books I’ve read all year. I almost peed on myself reading Satan’s dialogue. But this one had a slight deus ex machina quality to it. Overall, I enjoyed it and reading it but B for you.


Dear Ms. Rowe:

If I was going to RWA and you were going to RWA, you are the one author I would want to have dinner with because I am pretty sure that my entire night would spent laughing my ass off. Granted this on one book, but it is the type of book where I smiled from beginning to end. I am telling all my friends to read it.

This book has a morbid – Better Off Dead – humor to it. Justine Bennet is the Guardian of Mona, the Goblet of Eternal Youth. As Guardian, she has sworn oaths to keep the Goblet safe. Essentially the Oaths prevent her “from doing anything except eating and sleeping and cutting off people’s heads.”

Along comes Derek LaValle who believes that in order to remove the curse from his family line that causes all males to die at the age of “thirty-one years, forty-six weeks, four days, six hours, three minutes, and five seconds old”, he must kill the Guardian. Unfortunately, both the characters neglected libidos act up. On the one hand, they would love to shag like bunnies. On the other, they are destined to try to kill each other. Derek to break the curse and Justine to protect the Goblet. Both main characters are likeable, funny, and charming.

The entire cast of backup characters is a hoot from Satan who is trying to court Iris, Justine’s mother. Iris is in purgatory and whether she is sent to heaven or hell appears to depend on Justine’s fulfillment of her role as the Guardian. Theresa Nichols sipped from the cup over 200 years ago and was changed from the greated lay in the village to a dragon.

What was even more impressive was that each character is different from the other. Each has his or her own distinct dialogue patterns. I could tell which character was talking simply by what was said and how it was said. The dialogue was superb.

The whole story told with a wink and a nod, a tongue in cheek. Satan even sounds like the comedian who plays the pope (what delicious irony!). There is a great twist on the subdued secretary turning sexpot. The consummation scene was marvelous. Each sarcastic moment that you have is for a purpose, for effect and not just because that is the only thing you know how to write. Every little plot point was carefully woven into the story from the initial meeting, to the consummation of their desire to one of the funniest scenes that I have read in a long, long time featuring a mind reading Manasa.

The only thing bad about your book, really, was the cover and title. Both kept me from buying this book until a friend of mine recommended it to me, saying it was a keeper for her.

I cannot wait for your next book. This is a keeper for me too. A-.

Best regards,


Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Cece
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 09:41:40

    This book is SO on my keeper shelf and only two more months until Theresa’s story comes out! *buttwiggle*

    I can’t remember the last time a book actually made me really truly laugh out loud.

  2. Nonny
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 11:11:19

    I loved this book. The whole thing with Satan and Satan Jr. had me in stitches.

    I’m realllly looking forward to the next book. :)

  3. Jane
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 12:18:53

    I am giggling to myself just thinking about the satan/satan jr. scenes. It was hilarious how much Satan kept loving on Satan Jr. the more Satan Jr. hated him. And the Manasa scene. OMIGOD. Hilarious.

  4. Cece
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 12:25:16

    Jane I got busted reading in the kid’s dentist office!

    You know what amazes me (in a good way) is that with such memorable characters (I’ll NEVER look at Satan the same again) they didn’t steal the show …when they easily could have!

  5. Jane
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 12:29:31

    What really made this book a keeper for me (besides the excellent dialogue) was that it gently skewered so many romance stereotypes. There is the jab at the shy, mousy secretary becoming a bombshell. Then the jab at the sex at the most inopportune moment. Then the personal angst over being abandoned by a parent. All those themes were brought up and turned on their head. Me thinks Ms. Rowe is a very talented writer.

  6. Tara Marie
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 13:40:26

    I’ve had this book in my hand several times and put it down, now I’ll have to pick it up.

  7. Jay
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 16:19:51

    I feel honored that a book I recommended got a good letter from Jane! That’s nigh on impossible!

  8. Robin
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 17:17:55

    I’ve been afraid of this book because I’m wary of books that sound like clones of a series I’ve grown oh so tired of, oh so fast, but your review assures me that my fears are unfounded. Why is it that a positive review will often encourage me to buy a book, but a negative review almost never has any real impact on me? Oh, well; another book to add to my obscene TBB list.

  9. jaq
    Jul 21, 2006 @ 20:19:33

    Thanks for the remindered! I meant to buy this book, but by the time it was released I couldn’t remember the author’s name nor the title of the book.

  10. itz me
    Jul 31, 2006 @ 19:37:00

    heya stef
    wat cha bn up ta aye
    itz bn a lng tym lolz jks
    ima onli kidding my m8z nme iz stef az wel haha
    i avnt red ya book yet bt i reli wana get round ta it
    i tink itz gonna b awsum
    i lve romance and humor novels
    anywayz jus so ya no ima 14 yrs old

  11. LorelieLong
    Sep 16, 2006 @ 05:07:07

    I just couldn’t get into this one. Picked it up and tried to read it twice and couldn’t get it finished.

    The whole thing about the pretzels bugged the shit out of me too. Whoopee, it’s a freaking pretzel.

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