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Bet Me Mass Market Paperback – August 26, 2004

543 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews Review

Setting: small city in Ohio

Thirty-three-year-old Minerva Dobbs is annoyed when her current boyfriend dumps her three weeks before her sisters' wedding. But she's downright furious a few moments later when she overhears her now "ex" boyfriend bet hunky Calvin Morrisey that he can't take her home and bed her. In fact, she's so angry at them both that she lets Cal take her to dinner and decides to string him along until after her sisters' wedding. Minerva pegs Cal as a handsome "used car salesman of seducers." Cal thinks Minerva is a "cranky, starving, risk-averse statistician." But Minerva's hormones keep whispering "this one," although she knows the gorgeous Cal isn't the man for her practical, white-cotton-bra, several-pounds-over-thin, self. And Cal is blindsided by the lust he feels for the voluptuous, sensual woman he glimpses behind Min's actuary exterior. While Cal and Min struggle to deal with their mutual distrust and attraction, their friends and families try their best to interfere and direct the progression of the unlikely romantic connection.

Bet Me is unabashedly, irrepressibly romantic. In the wacky, wonderful world of Min and Cal, author Jennifer Crusie leaves no humorous situation unexplored--no potential comedic cauldron left unstirred--no hysterically funny complication left undeveloped. The reader is treated to a seemingly mismatched hero and heroine who fling caution to the winds to explore their unexpected attraction. The sexual tension is hot, the dialogue witty and wickedly sarcastic, and the supporting cast of secondary characters hilarious. Like Min's favorite Krispy Kreme donuts, this novel is rich and sinfully delicious. Indulge. Enjoy. --Lois Faye Dyer --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Minerva Dobbs's mother named her daughter after the Greek goddess. Yet Min, who's grown up to be a curvy woman who adores carbs, isn't quite a knockout beauty and, at 33, she shows no signs of getting married anytime soon. So when the dashingly handsome (god-like, in fact) Calvin Morrissey enters Min's life and starts pouring on the charm, she's skeptical. As well she should be-it appears Cal has a $10,000 bet with some of his drinking buddies that he can get Min into bed within a month. Statistics-loving Min knows about the bet and figures she can play Cal for a month, use him as a date for her sister's upcoming wedding and then dump him right before the month is up. Alas, destiny has different plans. As Min and Cal fall for each other, Crusie pulls out the pranks, repeatedly pushing the two together and then tearing them apart. A bubbly cast of characters alternately helps and hinders romance, including Cal's ex-girlfriend, a psychologist who studies relationships for a living; a matchmaking Italian chef; and Min's friend Liza, who'll stop at nothing to make sure Min doesn't wind up with the conniving Cal. It's all cutesy, corny, romantic fun, and Crusie (Fast Women; Faking It; etc.) has created a loveable character in Min. Although some readers will be sucked into Crusie's deliberate plot, others may cringe at its predictability. With multiple references to Chicken Marsala, Krispy Kreme donuts and Midwestern brats (a fine contrast to Min's compulsively thin-thinking mother), Crusie's latest should delight romance readers with a penchant for sinful foods.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks; 1st edition (August 31, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312987854
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312987855
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (543 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #345,755 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jennifer Crusie was researching her dissertation on the differences in the way men and women tell stories when she got sidetracked into writing romance novels.

Her first book was published in 1993 (which pretty much finished off any hope of her getting that PhD) and her twenty-second book, Maybe This Time, came out in August of 2010, all of which she considers a minor miracle, especially since she is also a New York Times, USA Today and Publisher's Weekly bestseller and a two-time Rita award winner.

Jenny is currently working on her new Liz Danger mystery series. She is a very happy woman.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

173 of 180 people found the following review helpful By WIAPilot VINE VOICE on May 7, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Let me just say that it is 6 a.m. in the morning. I have a LOT of work to do at our business today, which will be rather difficult as I HAVEN'T BEEN TO BED BECAUSE I STAYED UP ALL NIGHT reading, "Bet Me" by Jennifer Crusie. For the first time in a LONG time, I could not put the book down!
I think that it is a crime to have the Spotlight Review rating this only 2 stars!! It is one of the BEST books that I have read all year. I guess that everyone is different, but I can't believe that we were reading the same book.
Jennifer Crusie's books ALL have great dialogue, but sometimes her previous books seemed just a little too "dysfunctional" in a witty kind of way. Even though "Bet Me" has its strange moments, it is a captivating book.
The dialogue completely submerged me into the characters. The entire time I was reading it, I thought, "My God - that is exactly what people would say." It wasn't canned or stilted- it was funny, but more believable than any dialogue I think that I have ever read.
I hope that Jennifer Crusie will write more books like this. What is truly a shame though is that the first reviewer's views are far from the majority opinion of this book. Sadly, that is what too many people will look at. This really is a book worth buying. I loved the characters and especially liked the addition of the last chapter.
Excellent, excellent book.
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55 of 56 people found the following review helpful By L. Paschal on August 19, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I just read Jennifer Crusie's new book, Bet Me, in one sitting. I discovered her last year and have read almost every book she's written -- and have been delighted with each and every one. She writes romantic comedies ... really good, funny, heart-warming, witty, intelligient romantic comedies.

This one is about a normal girl ... I say normal because she isn't a size two with gorgeous blond hair that catches the light just so & has the perfect job and is the envy of all around her. That's the typical romantic comedy heroine. Not in this book. In Bet Me, we have Minerva Dobbs: a slightly overweight, under-confident, intelligient, hilarious, witty heroine. I laughed throughout this book ... Crusie has a writing style that I haven't seen before. All of her books are romantic comedys, they all have unlikely heroines, and they all have animals. Usually its dogs - but in this one it's a mangy looking cat. Her books have lovable characters -- REAL characters. People you can see yourself actually knowing .... People you can see YOURSELF in. This book struck a chord with me in many ways .... but I loved a scene towards the very end. Minerva is standing in front of a mirror after putting on a dress that our hero has chosen for her and he's trying to make her see what he sees ... a beautiful and sexy woman.

If you're looking for a light, warm-hearted read .... Bet Me is a good bet!
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Lani Schwalbe on February 11, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Jennifer Crusie goes for it and tells a love story the way it should be told - with total, reckless abandon. In this modern-age fairy tale, actuary Min Dobbs knows handsome Cal Morrissey is a bad risk. He's a habitual lover-and-leaver, and too charming to be up to any good. Cal Morrissey knows that love's a long shot and the best you can hope for is a good time in the mean time - and uptight Min doesn't even look like a good time in the first place. But when Fate steps in to put them together, everyone knows resistance is futile.
From delightful main characters to an engaging supporting cast, Crusie hits another one out of the park with "Bet Me." Crusie's signature tight storytelling and graceful humor are as present here as ever, but she's added a layer of mythology without apology which creates a thoroughly charming set of characters in a lovely world where fairy tales can come true. It's a good bet that you won't find a better warm fuzzy this year; "Bet Me" is worth every penny of the hardcover price.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 25, 2004
Format: Hardcover
If you liked Tracy and Hepburn, Bogart and Becall, Gable and Lombard just to name a few then I think it's safe to say that you will like Cal and Min. Like the preceding couples, they click in a memorable way. And like the archetypes above, they are sexy and fun to read about. Once I picked up Bet Me, I had a hard time putting it down. Not because I was worried about the ending or that it kept me in suspense. Nope, it was just so much fun to read that I enjoyed almost every minute of it.
Crusie has matured in her writing and it shows in this offering. Her characters are sophisticated, smart and likable. They are movie material. I always thought WTT was movie material but more in a Farrelly Brothers type of movie. Bet me is akin to Mike Nichol's material. Either is lots of fun and true entertainment but Nichol's films have that touch of something that makes them classics. And Bet Me is like that. It has that certain something where the characters are bigger than the pages and they come right off and on to the stage. All the characters in this book are well written and indispensable. Each shines their little bit of flashlight on the fun and development of the romance between the leads. Whether it's the lesbian neighbor bartender or the ex-psycho- analyst girlfriend who is an almost stalker.
Bet Me was an exercise in written foreplay. Badinage type foreplay, where the characters delve into every aspect of each other before giving in to the inevitable. The sexual banter and development of the relationship between Cal and Min is really good stuff and like I said hard to put down. JC really puts a lot into the cultivation of her characters in this book especially the heroine. She is a woman that you can relate to in some ways if not all ways.
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