Bonnie Hampton has just died and is a bit overwhelmed by her afterlife. The Green Room is a happenin’ place full of party people, but all she can think about is the gorgeous blond she met back on Earth in 1969.
Title: Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine
Author: J.D. Frettier
Review Rating: 4 stars
Life carries on
Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine is an unapologetically profane paranormal romance, and author Jennifer Theriot (as J.D. Frettier) makes no attempt to hide that this isn’t Madame Bovary. For a start, Madame Bovary isn’t anywhere near as much fun as Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine, although that’s not a particularly groundbreaking revelation about Madame Bovary, now that I think about it. Maybe what Emma Bovary needed all along was some time in the Green Room.
Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine is part sincere tribute to true love, part that first adult conversation you have with your grandmother when she is a bit drunk and forgets for a moment who you are. Unexpectedly for a sexy romp, Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine is about loss: people you lose; people you wish you could lose; people you find and re-find. It is moving and sincere and it touched my heart.
(If Feelings aren’t your thing, it also has a story arc about a butt plug that is almost as long as the female lead’s. I’d read a sequel about those sex toys if one was offered.)
Niceness transcending time and space
Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine is also a gust of lifesaving fresh air to anybody whose romance reading diet has had too many greasy fake abs in it lately. Author Jennifer Theriot (as J.D. Frettier) hasn’t made a cliche-free-zone, but Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine has a curated set of artisan cliches and I’m grateful for that.
The middle-aged and elderly characters are relatable and (mostly) worth hanging out with, although it wasn’t hard to find compassion even for black sheep daughter Dharma. The beauty the characters see in each other isn’t because they all look like models with almond-shaped eyes, but because they see each other through the eyes of love.
I always take note of The Other Woman when she appears, to see how she is characterized. TOT is a caricature in Desperately Seeking Sixty-Nine, but she is also a rapist, so that lack of attention is no less than she deserves in our happy naughty story. If anything, compared to the crude language shortcuts that authors often use to show the reader that TOT is an inferior creature to the Female Lead, the use of the word “seduction” here obscures the violence of what she does and gives the sexual predator a bit of linguistic cover.
Is it possible for a story to be too nice? Food for thought.❤