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review 2018-03-31 20:42
Should Have Just Re-Read Pride and Prejudice
Practice Makes Perfect - Julie James

Well the only redeeming thing about this book is that I realized in hindsight I could count the terrible thing towards Kill Your Darlings. There is something silver on the cover, the douche-bag hero's cuff-link. Bah to this terrible book.


I have really enjoyed Julie Jame's FBI/US Attorney series and stupidly thought this was a book that was part of that universe. Nope, this is part of a two book series she did and I guess she threw in the towel in. This book was initially published back in 2009. I suppose she thought this was her clever take on Pride & Prejudice. Nope. Not even a little. Besides profoundly mis-understanding Elizabeth and Darcy it seems, I don't think Darcy went around telling their boss that he banged her on his desk and then goes, but hey I realized I did that cause I loved you. I would have grabbed this fool by the tie and choked him out If I didn't think he would have enjoyed it.

Sorry, I just don't have a lot of patience with romance books like this these days. I want some romance and some chemistry. But I hate/loathe romance books that have strong women just going along with a man treating them like crap. What gets me is that I don't think the hero (JD) changes at all in the end. He still has appalling as hell views of women/equality/liberals and the heroine (Payton) I don't see putting up with that in the end. 


"Practice Makes Perfect" has two rival attorneys Payton and JD doing their best to one up each other. It's been 8 years since they met/started working together and they are both on the partner track at their firm. When a high stakes case comes their way, the two are thrown together. When they are both told due to plot reasons (seriously though) that the firm can only offer one person under 40 a partnership that year, the two of them are now in direct competition. 


Payton is developed more than JD in my opinion. I do wish though that James had followed up a bit more with the fact that Payton's father (who has nothing to do with her) came from money and maybe had some conversations with her best friend/mother about it. I don't know, it just pops in the story and pops back out. She also is dating a very nice guy named Chase, but hey, he doesn't treat her like dirt so she goes around saying something is missing there. 


JD sucks. He comes from a wealthy family and his father is a judge. His views on women would serve him well in this new world we seem to find ourselves increasingly these days. I will say this, JD would fit right in with those guys suing Google claiming them being white and male they are being discriminated against.


‘Forty Women to Watch Under 40,’ ” J.D. emphasized. “Tell me, Payton—is there a reason your gender finds it necessary to be so separatist? Afraid of a little competition from the opposite sex, perhaps?”

I have met some JD's in my life. I have so far managed to not bludgeon any of them to death.


“. . . how do you think it would go over if the magazine ran an article called ‘Forty Men to Watch Under 40’?” He took the liberty of answering for her. “You and your little feminista friends would call that discrimination. But then isn’t that, per se, discrimination? Shouldn’t we men be entitled to our lists, too?”

That's the other thing that drives me nuts about this character, he doesn't even get how far up his own ass he is. 


"J.D. ignored the sarcasm. “The playing field isn’t level—that’s the problem. Now maybe you’re comfortable accepting that, but I’m not. You know as well as I do that these days, if a man and a woman are equally qualified for a position, the woman gets the job. It’s this socially liberal, politically correct society we live in. Men have to be twice as good at what they do to remain competitive in the workplace. Women just have to stay in the race.”

Expletive you. 


"He pictured her place as being a tad . . . plebian. That probably wasn’t the most politically correct way to say it. What word did liberals prefer nowadays? Granola? Organic? In reality, however, Payton was none of those things. In fact, if she never spoke, one might actually think she was quite normal."

I call it now. These two marry and eventually divorce. 


“See, you just don’t understand women the way I do, J.D. They want it all: a career, apple martinis, financial independence, great shoes; but at the same time—and this they’ll never admit—they are drawn to patriarchal men who are dominant and controlling. That’s the essence of the Darcy complex. He may be an asshole, but he’s an asshole that gets the girl in the end.”

Somewhere Jane Austen just gave Tyler and JD a middle finger.


Seriously the whole book was JD just being a jerk and Payton being drawn to him cause he's attractive. When the inevitable sex scene happens I yawned. The only interesting that James had going for with this book was who would get the partnership, but she gets rid of that over some 11th hour BS I love you thing and then these two fools dance off happily into the sunset. 


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text 2018-03-31 19:49
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
Practice Makes Perfect - Julie James

“See, you just don’t understand women the way I do, J.D. They want it all: a career, apple martinis, financial independence, great shoes; but at the same time—and this they’ll never admit—they are drawn to patriarchal men who are dominant and controlling. That’s the essence of the Darcy complex. He may be an asshole, but he’s an asshole that gets the girl in the end.”


This book ticked me off. Besides a terrible understanding of Pride and Prejudice, the hero (JD) is a chavunistic pig. I think I finally have up even hoping to like him when it comes out he lied to his and Payton's (heroine) boss about having sex with her, on his desk, 8 years prior. BTW in the initial parts of the book Payton is wondering why her boss seems cool to her at times. That explains that. Of course Payton forgives all cause love. Sorry, not a great book. The sex scenes were lame too.

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text 2018-03-31 14:49
Reading progress update: I've read 20%.
Practice Makes Perfect - Julie James

The male hero has spent most of his time complaining about women, feminism, and liberals. His ranting about equality made me roll my eyes. Sorry don't like him.

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review 2017-04-22 23:41
Looking for a happy place, I think I have one for you...
Practice Makes Perfect - Jay Northcote

Dev's just moved out of his residence at Uni because things weren't working out for him there and as luck would have it a friend of his has helped him move into a house with a few other students and a really hot neighbor, named Ewan. 


Ewan's Scottish and he's a ginger. He's also a psychology student having trouble with one of his classes...a class that involves numbers. Dev's good with numbers and Dev likes to make list...list of things he wants to do. One of those things on his list involves getting some experience...experience of a personal and intimate nature. So it only seems natural that Dev who's good with numbers and Ewan who's more than happy to help Dev get intimate with him strike a bargain...a gentleman's agreement if you will.


Things get a bit more complicated when both men realize that their feelings have gone well beyond the boundaries of their gentleman's agreement and neither of them wants things to end but they're not sure where they stand with each other or how to find out without risking their hearts.


'Practice Makes Perfect' is the third book in Jay Northcote's series 'Housemates' and while each book can be read as a standalone, I never felt like I was missing anything from this story in spite of the fact that characters from the first two books made appearances in Dev and Ewan's story, as soon as time permits I plan on going back to the beginning to read those first two stories not because I need to but because I enjoyed this book that much and this is a way to get more.


'Practice Makes Perfect' was awesome, I truly don't remember the last time I was so wonderfully enchanted by a story. Dev is so sweet and naive and just totally adorkable and while Ewan may be more worldly and experienced than Dev, he's also a very sweet and kind person and even before there's an emotional connection between these two men, he cares about Dev on a basic decent human being level.


Humor can be a wonderful thing in a story, but it doesn't always work for each person for a number of reasons. Sometimes we can feel like maybe the author is trying to hard or we just don't get it, maybe it feels like the humor's coming at someone's expense, whatever there's a myriad of reasons but for me the humorous moments in this story were spot on and this story quickly became a happy place for me. I laughed and smiled and yes, I may have found myself talking to the characters from time to time...hey, don't judge me, if guys can yell at the television when their hockey/baseball/football/whatever team screws-up, I can talk to my audio books from time to time.


While this wasn't really what I would call a comedy, there was definitely a sweet and serious side to things, the humorous moments planted throughout the story were ones that I could so easily imagine happening in real life.  


Add to what was just an overall well written story with characters who captured my heart a narrator whose voices were engaging and expressive...just perfect and what more could I really ask for.


'Practice Makes Perfect' is my second audiobook narrated by Mark Steadman and like the last one for me he did an awesome job. While the story was good and the narration was good the last time around for whatever reason I just didn't quite connect with things. This time it all worked wonderfully well. So well that I have zero doubt in my mind that I will be listening to this one more than once because just like anything that we like...why settle for once when you can enjoy it to your hearts content.


If you're looking for a sweet, uncomplicated story about young love that's guaranteed to make you smile and laugh in the best ways possible I highly recommend 'Practice Makes Perfect'.



An audiobook of 'Practice Makes Perfect' was graciously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. 

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review 2017-03-13 00:00
Practice Makes Perfect
Practice Makes Perfect - Jay Northcote First of all, I must say, even though this is book three in the Housemates series, it can be read perfectly as a standalone novel. But I recommend reading the predecessors, just for the fun of it!

Dev has to move out his dorm because some stupid homophobic students are giving him a hard time.
Settle in his new home, he meets Ewan, his neighbor, who agrees to give Dev some sexual experience in exchange of statistics lessons.
What Ewan is really doing is protecting a sexy and naïve guy from a not so innocent world, so you could say, Ewan's intentions are sweet and kind from the very first moment and it makes you love him since the beginning.
And the same with Dev. This cute, insecure, virgin guy, weird in the social relationships, is so lovely and insecure you gonna like him since page one.
These two characters together? they are adorable!

I really enjoyed this story. Dev and Ewan are sweet, cute and funny. Once I started I could not stop reading. This is something Northcote usually do for me, so it wasn't a surprise.

The pace is great, the conversations fluid and funny, the characters very likable, entertaining and developed, and the sex is hot.

This is the other thing I loved of this book: good, steamy, hot sex in the exact and perfect amount. And the same with the angst. There is little angst, coming mostly from Dev and Ewan's insecurities and fears. But it is something light, easy, based on the uncertainties of our main characters and perfectly fitted in this sweet and lovely story.

No doubt Jay Northcote knows how to write MM romance.
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