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4.5 out of 5 stars
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on April 7, 2013
Why was I surprised? I don't really know. Maybe because I have never heard of the author. Maybe because I don't remember buying this which means it was either really cheap or free. Maybe because I don't think grease is romantic.

But let me tell you, this was a story that I immersed myself in. I carried my Kindle around sightseeing on spring break (I never take my Kindle out and about) just so I could READ every chance I got. Yes, I even sat in a museum and read a few pages instead of walking around looking at the art, really good art.

I know nothing of dancing or mechanicking, but the situations and set-ups seemed authentic.
Every time I went, oh, obvious plot device, I was shown, no, not so obvious and most believeable. Yes, they are both gorgeous; yes, he does happen to have money; yes, there was a convenient breakage of bone; but there were also back stories and most satisfying ways of incorporating those devices into the story.

I will say there were editing issues, more and more as the story progressed. Wrong words were used (even allowing for the Australian use of words), words were misspelled, and sentence construction at times would almost make you stand on your head. These problems would generally throw me out of a book. In this case, I just plowed on and only got mildly irritated with yet another "alright." In case you are wondering, everybody in the book is "alright." I know this because everybody in the book was asked if they were "alright" at least thirty-two times, at least it seemed like it.

The H/h were believable. Their life situations were believable. While there was insta-lust that was purposely and ruthlessly pushed down for a myriad of authentic reasons, once the H/h did get involved, they worked through that myriad of issues. You read the arc of the relationship. The insta-lust was fed with personal histories, life stories, interaction and it grew to a real love.

As we are dealing with a "romance," it was inevitable that a road block would go up, and it did. It was a large block, it was a realistic reaction to one of those obvious plot devices, but again, it "felt" real. I keep wanting to say "authentic," but it feels too redundant. But authentic it is, well, if you are a professionally trained ballroom dancer and a mechanic.
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on December 20, 2012
The title is silly but loved the story. Relationship between Dan/Alex develops like a slow grin. The sexual tension when they’re together is like combustible energy. The romantic/sex scenes while sexy are not graphic. As a matter of fact, they’re so veiled I had to go back and re-read those scenes several times wondering “ok, they did the deed right?” Kind of unusual but didn’t take away from the story for me. After a while some of romantic scenes of the bks I’ve been reading lately just drone on and don’t do anything for me and just seem, well... boring. This bk was a nice change of pace. Minimal sex deets aside I thought this was great story. Loved Dan, of course, and Alex has a few smackable moments holding on to her anger just a mite too long; thought she was a bit of a snob too. Endearing side characters, Alex's posse and all of Dan’s gang (Mitch, Ant, Fluke, etc). Strong emotional moment at the 89% mark, I’m crying, but not from anything bad, just happy tears. Nice character development as they both overcome mental and emotional hurdles. Thought this was just an overall good story.

Will definitely try more bks by this Aussie author.
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on December 10, 2012
There is a lot to like about Grease Monkey Jive, there are two great characters in Alex and Dan, there is great funny snappy dialogue, the situation of mixing ballroom with a player, and the fact that the characters have an actual story to tell. I immediately got drawn into the story, and liked how it started with the first between Alex and Dan, creating all this chemistry, but then went back in time to show your where it started. It was great getting a glimpse of initial heat between them because a lot of back story is then provided, and it helped knowing it was going somewhere.

There are also great secondary characters in this book, Dan's mates work really well, and I loved the banter they had going on. They also felt so real to me, nothing about them seemed fake. I wondered after finishing this story if any of them may end up with their own.

So all was going well for me, liking the characters, liking the story, liking the growth they are doing, that was until the sex scenes came, and then something happened to the writing that I did not like. They sex scenes made me laugh out loud (and not in a good way). It was like they were written by someone else. They did not have the same sound or flow was the rest of the story. The lines used to describe it were not romantic, but on the "vague but lets be creative side", and kind of repetitive. Just a few examples of this are
- the flat trampoline of her stomach
- her skin was hypersensitive, allergic to Dan's touch
- their outer skins were discarded ... their outer voices discarded too.
- the moguls of his abdomen
- he was too close, too far, too heavy, too light, too nowhere, too everywhere
- they overheated in the warm kitchen, brought to the boil too quickly, too much simmer, too much steam
- hands fast fumbling, breaking away for buttons and zips, coming back together, to grasp, to stroke, too kiss, to push away fabric, to reveal

The sex scene took away the flow of the story for me and it took a while for me get back into it. Personally if the sex scene had not been there but alluded too instead it would have worked so much better, and this book would be a four star read. If the author re wrote them the same would apply. I really did like the story, and it is such a shame this took away from the rest of the book.
Will I read it again? Maybe, but skip the sex scene
Would I recommend it? Sure
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on November 27, 2012
Loved this book. It was more complex than I thought it would be, with well-rounded secondary characters and a charismatic leading man, who is haunted by the demons of his past. I found the dialogue snappy and the conversations between the male friends hilarious. The plot was well thought out and the ending put a big smile on my face. I really enjoyed this book.
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on July 6, 2012
Infinitely readable and great fun with characters that literally dance on the page. An ensemble cast supporting the two main characters and adding lots of laughs. This is the second book I've read from this author. The writing style is snappy and stay up late engaging.
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on November 30, 2013
This is the 3rd book from this author that I've read. One I was insanely crazy about; the other was just really good. This book topped them all! Well-written, and great characters portrayed with a depth that is rare in romance novels, and a plot that was authentic and character driven. No plot devices to keep the characters apart; their personalities and quirks drove them apart and back together. I will be buying every book this author writes!
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on December 1, 2012
Wonderful, quirky contemporary Australian romance. A real hero's journey. Fast, funny dialogue and an unlikely setting that really works. Yes, there's a Strictly Ballroom feel to it, but it's about getting real and growing up as well.
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on July 27, 2012
I do love escapist stories with snappy dialogue. Not quite in Aaron Sorkin's league (Is anyone! Maybe Diablo Cody?) but Jive has aspirations. Jive's characters resonate through their dialogue from the Scott's acid tongue to Fluke's outrage. You can tell Dan's Dad is going to be a problem from the moment he opens his mouth. You can tell Gwen is going to be a savvy grandma. She has one of the best lines in the book.
A favourite snippet:

Ant: "You're not going to are you?"
Dan: "What?"
Ant: "Tap her?"
Dan: "Ant, I'm going to fix the girl's lock."
Mitch: "Is that what they call it now?" said Mitch.
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on September 5, 2012
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It's a journey of how two people from different worlds collide and create an environment that sizzles. For both, the journey is eye opening, Dan discovers who he definitely doesn't want to be like, his relationship with his friend is threatened and needs to work out how to fix it, and now the gorgeous Alex is on the scene creating upheaval in his love life. Alex's passion is dancing but seems to always sacrifice her passion try to please everyone else in her life. Now that Dan on the scene she discovers what she want's in her life and also needs to work out how do deal with the upheaval Dan causes with her love life. The supporting characters are absolutely great and the bantering between then has you laughing. The story took me on a journey and at times surprised me by taking me in a totally unexpected direction - which I thought was great and unpredictable. Loved it, great read.
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on July 18, 2012
I do like a gritty hero and Dan has grit, the kind of grit that makes him capable of changing his man whore ways - not for the girl - but for himself first. You can't help but be in his corner when the going gets tough for him. And he cooks. I'd dance with him forever. Read it and dance
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