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41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
Format: Mass Market PaperbackVerified Purchase
The characters in this story are a bit dated: he's a Republican yuppie lawyer aiming to be made a partner in his law firm, and she's a commune-raised, out-of-work, liberal educator. The book was published in 1994 so that explains it. But even so, this is another funny and entertaining book by Ms. Cruisie, with sharply drawn characters and crisp dialogue.
I intially wasn't drawn to Tess Newhart - she's in her mid-thirties and still living in a thrift-store-furnished apartment, getting involved with protests, etc. My first reaction was "grow up already". But the more I read the more I liked her and felt in sympathy with her. Nick Jamieson is more than the standard smooth-talking lawyer he appears to be, even if it seems as though making partner is his sole goal in life. There is some classic rapid-fire dialogue between Tess and Nick, and the "conversations" Nick has with his secretary Christine are worth the price of the book alone. Secondary plots concern an unsuitable romance between Tess and Nick's best friends (a retired chorus girl and a well-heeled partner in the law firm), and a possible case of literary plagerism.
Tess and Nick's relationship is both humorous and romantic, their sexual encounters are inventive and sensual, and the secondary characters round out the story nicely. This is a book worth finding.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm a big fan of Jennifer Crusie's - I think Welcome to Temptation is one of the best romance novels ever - but this book really doesn't work, even allowing for the fact that it's rather dated. The plot is a mess and the characterisation is so unsubtle that after a while you want to scream: 'Okay, Jennifer, I got it! He's sexy but straightlaced, she's sexy but flaky ... you don't have to keep hammering the point home.' I was so bored with Strange Bedpersons that I found myself skipping bits of it -and I never thought I'd say that about a Crusie novel.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on June 6, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Having read a couple of Cruise's newer books such as `FAST WOMEN' and `FAKING IT' I decided that I wanted to read some of her earlier works so I purchased `STRANGE BEDPERSONS' and `MANHUNTING'. The writing styles of the latter are so different from those of the former it is almost hard to believe that the same person wrote them, however, while I wasn't thrilled with `MANHUNTING' I really enjoyed `STRANGE BEDPERSONS' despite the difference in style.
The relationship between Nick and Tess was endearing and it was fun watching these two completely opposite people develop a fling into something much more. I also enjoyed the relationship between the secondary characters Gina, Tess' best friend, and Park, Nick's colleague and long time friend. More over, I liked the fact that there was an actual story here, not just watching two people fall in love. I felt for Nick who was fighting to make partner in his law firm and the highly liberal Tess who was torn between the Nick she saw at home and Nick the social climber. I noticed that a lot of people gave this book poor reviews but, call me a sucker for a good "opposites attract" love story; I give it four stars!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on October 14, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is perhaps my favorite modern novel. Unlike Crusie's later works, it's basically just fun - no underlying explorations of the pain of divorce or the masks we wear - just fun. As always Crusie isn't afraid we won't love her imperfect characters, who learn to accept each other's imperfections, also. Nick and Tess bounce through the early pages of the book like pinballs - attracted and repelled by each other simultaneously - until they work through their problems. They are surrounded by richly realized family and friends. Few romances have as satisfying a mystery subplot. As with all Crusie novels, there are sentences that must be rolled around on the tongue and savored.

And you can make a meal off the meals in the book, from the jittery house party dinner that sets the mystery in motion to the hilarious evening at the pretentious restaurant that "reveals all," with plenty of take out Chinese in between.

Like the characters, the book has some flaws. It needs a prequel to explain how Tess and Nick kept their friendship going and provide more evidence of Nick's career obsession. And, trust me on this, no liberal, no one who lived in a low-income neighborhood and worked with semi-delinquent youth, would suggest becoming a district attorney as a first choice for a good-guy lawyer - child support enforcement, public defender or environmental law are much more likely.

Sadly, in today's polarized politics, the likelihood of two people bridging the red state-blue state divide is even smaller than in 1994 when this book was published.

Give this book a try, and then read, What the Lady Wants, which is nearly as funny and fun.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I read the reviews of this book before buying it. People say it's "outdated." I had to disagree. Even though this book was written 10 years ago, the characters in this story can still be found today. It is easy to relate to these people which makes the book that much more probable to sink into. This book was hilarious, captivating and full of fun surprises that kept me turning the pages. I never write reviews but I had to for this book because the previous reviews did not give this book justice.

I love the sassyness of Tess and the structured straight-forwardness of Nick. That is so common to see in many practical relationships where the two people balance each other out. This is an example of that balancing and most definitely of the COMPROMISE needed in relationships. It shows us how to stand up for what we want, that change is good although uncomfortable and difficult and that Living life can be FUN and full of energy.

I laughed while reading this book (read it in one sitting) and loved the characters. Perhaps it's because I could relate to Tess, the free spirit.

Yes this book was written in the 90's and was one of Cruise's earlier books but she has an edge to her work, with humor, problem solving and lots of heated sexual tension (fun!).

I say, DON'T LISTEN to the negative reviews. If you like Cruise's work, if you don't mind reading about far right and far left views (it's just a book people) and if you want to laugh and enjoy fun sex scenes, then this is a good book to read.

Have fun!! :D
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on December 5, 2004
Format: Mass Market PaperbackVerified Purchase
I have really enjoyed all of Crusie's books that I have read (3 or 4, before this one), but I will readily admit that this is the first one that actually made me laugh out loud. The scene in the restaurant is absolutely hilarious. I think it is a good short read, not too sappy, and definitely a mood-lifter.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on January 17, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is a very short but well written Romance Story. The story as usual has all of the funny situations and very funny characters that Jennifer Crusie is famous for writing into her stories.
Tess and Nick had dated for a while but Tess ends up becoming so fed up with his "stiffness" in all situations that she and he stop seeing each other. He on the other hand thought she was a bit too carefree in where she wanted to do "certain" things. But, when he needs a fiancé for a work assignment no one else comes to mind.
While it was a quick read it was a lot of fun. If you need to kill about 3 hours on an afternoon and you want to laugh out load at some of the situations this books for you
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format: Mass Market PaperbackVerified Purchase
I did not expect to enjoy Jennifer Crusie's "Strange Bedpersons" as much as I did. But I truly liked it. Several reviewers mentioned that it was a little dated as it was written in 1994. I didn't find that it was, as heck - I know women (and men) who are still living their lives as though it were the 60's (and 70's).
I read this in an afternoon and the novel totally held my attention. The writing by Cruisie was great as usual. The hardest part in reading "Strange Bedpersons" was that maybe I am too much of a realist (not enough of a "romantic")and kept thinking how these couples were going to stay married after a few years? (But I guess that's another story!)
I LOVED the character of Lenny. I thought the entire situation involving him was just so superb. I loved how Tess had played such an important role in his life.
Although "Bet Me" is (thus far) my favorite of Crusie's books - I certainly would recommend this book as well.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I am quickly becoming a big Jennifer Crusie fan. This, as her others, was a really fun book. Her main characters are always fun, likeable, and just a little off center. There is humor, romance and just a tad of mystery thrown in for good measure.

The scene in the resteraunt cracked me up and made me smile the whole time I read through it.

I highly recommend this book!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon May 3, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Tess and Nick are as opposite as two people can get. She is a free spirit who furnishes her home and closet with thrift store bargains; he is on the partner track at his law firm. So it is no wonder why they broke off their relationship. When Nick shows up at her door with a proposition she should refuse - to pose as his fianc? so he can nail a partnership - she begrudgingly takes him up on it. Mostly because she has no other option, as her dilapidated apartment building keeps getting vandalized. Soon she is also moving into his bedroom and his heart, as these opposites realize their magnetic attraction to each other. But can attraction lead to forever after?

Penned in 1994, this light tale, while not as developed as later Crusie novels, contains the requisite snappy dialog, humor, sensuality, and engaging secondary characters we come to expect from Crusie. You won't be disappointed.
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