Call Me Irresistible - Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Released January 18, 2011
Long time Susan Elizabeth Phillips fans take note, Call Me Irresistible showcases a large number of SEP's past characters. For this book, she visits the adult versions of three children from previous stories.
In Call Me Irresistible, Ted Beaudine (son of Francesca and Dallie Beaudine of Fancy Pants) is set to marry Lucy Jorvik (daughter of President Cornelia Jorvik and her husband Mat from First Lady). When Lucy's best friend Meg (daughter of Fleur Savagar and Jake Koranda of Glitter Baby) arrives, Meg quickly realizes that Ted is all wrong for Lucy. After some girl talk, Lucy decides to ditch her wedding and figure out what she wants from life.
Meg's stuck in Wynette, Texas, with residents who hate her guts, including one very ticked off groom. She can't afford her hotel bill and her car is on its last leg. Worse, her parents have cut her off because they want her to find her own way. When she's nearly arrested trying to flee the town, Meg's forced to take a job cleaning hotel rooms to pay her debts. The longer she stays, the worse her problems become. She's discovered she's falling in love with Ted and she's definitely not the only woman who has him in her sights and the town is not ready to forgive her from ruining the marriage of the century.
In addition to the novels listed earlier, readers may also remember Ted from Lady Be Good: A Novel where characters Kenny Traveler and Lady Emma Wells-Finch met and fell in love. Meg also appeared in What I Did for Love: A Novel. With so many characters from previous novels, long-time readers are going to love catching up on the families and relationships.
I've read some of the above mentioned books but not all of them. I did find myself wanting to go back and read the others so that I could have better insight into some of the townspeople. Many bordered on plain rude and I simply couldn't imagine liking them in the past.
I found myself irate during the first part of the novel because the residents of this town really treat Meg like crap. If I lived in that town, I'd move. I couldn't take part in some of their behavior, including Ted's. Not only do they pay Meg less than all other housekeepers at the hotel, but she's told repeatedly to do things over simply because she has to do what her "boss" says. Her "boss" also makes it a habit to check rooms for tips before Meg gets a chance to do that.
Despite the fact that Lucy was a grown woman making her own decisions, Meg took the brunt of the blame. She has very few supporters in the town and, if anything, her determination to prove herself is inspiring. She's probably one of the toughest heroines I've encountered in a novel.
Ted has his moments of strength, but for the most part he came off as a pushover. He may be the Mayor of Wynette, but it's obvious the town rules the roost not him. By the time he seemed to grow a set, I was almost sick of him and thinking Meg should give up.
Once the gossip and mean-spiritedness is under control, Call Me Irresistible became a warm, tender romance. I suppose the conflict was necessary, but at the same time it was maddening because I truly felt for Meg. That's the sign of a good author, they make you truly care about what happens to at least one character in the book. In the end, I definitely would recommend SEP's latest novel. Just be prepared to be really ticked off with some of the characters during the first handful of chapters.