by Vicki Lewis Thompson

August 2004
ISBN: 0-312-99856-2
Reviewer Graphic Button St. Martin`s Press
Mass Market Paperback

Just when I started to despair of finding another fun, sexy read, along comes Vicky Lewis Thompson with The Nerd Who Loved Me. It’s a rare treat with delightful, unforgettable characters all around.

Lainie Terrell, is a showgirl in Vegas—sporting a killer body, a photographic memory and an adorable four-year-old son—Dexter, to complete the whole package. But, sexy Lainie’s on the run most of the time, dodging her obnoxious, hard-drinking ex-boyfriend and Dexter’s father, Joey Benjamin. Joey is among several siblings vying for the Benjamin family fortune. And as luck would have it, or so Joey thinks, his older brother Emil had just come out of the closet announcing he was gay, leaving Joey next in line to inherit. Joey knew his father (who was a puritan to his core) would never allow Emil to be the Benjamin family successor. Inasmuch, Joey has decided to resurrect his relationship with Lainie one more time, and present his son to his father, thus securing an impressive legacy. Joey is certain Dexter will be the catalyst to turn the odds in his favor. Time was running out for Joey however, as he had some considerable gambling debts to cover. If he didn’t produce Dexter quickly, all might be lost. Joey was a desperate man.

Harry Ambrewster, a shy, mild-mannered nerdy, but successful accountant, and son of a Vegas showgirl himself, had volunteered to baby-sit Dexter while Lainie worked nights. The fringe benefits were enormous. He could spend a few amazing hours with a great kid (a miniature genius like himself) and on the nights he was free . . .meander down to the Nirvana and watch Lainie dance. Harry believed he was overlooked and disregarded, but Lainie knew he was watching, and so did all the other showgirls. Yes, Harry was smitten, despite the fact that he had decided long ago that he wanted a more conventional woman in his life. The mother of his future children would need to be home at night, providing the stability he thought he’d missed in his own childhood. So while he knew his fascination with Lainie Terrell was going nowhere, he couldn’t quite bring himself to end the nocturnal visits.

When Joey sets his dim-witted plans in motion, he has no idea the lengths Lainie’s new friends will go to, to keep him from accomplishing his goals. Enter . . .Rona (Harry’s mother), Leo, (Rona’s lover) Fred (the dog) and of course all four of Rona’s retired showgirl friends the TITS (Temptresses In Temporary Suspension). Together, they hatch a plan to keep Joey out of Dexter’s reach and Lainie safe from harm. Leo, who allegedly has connections with the mob, is pretty sure Joey is up to no good, and for the loveable Rona, (a wanna-be grandma) her interest and plans are on a much grander scale. Namely . . .Dexter for her grandson and Lainie as her son’s future bride, both she’s discovered, are the answer to her prayers.

The love scenes are hot, the dialog sassy, and the fun begins right off the bat. Lainie, an endearing sexually deprived mother, decides she is not about to pass up this one chance to experience a man like Harry. And Harry, who is so irresistibly strait-laced, discovers a sensuous side to his nature that he never knew he had, or at least he hadn’t until Lainie walked in on his shower and gave him the ride of his very hum-drum, predictable life. But the very best moments are between Dexter, Rona and the TITS. Funny and heartwarming, you will never think of Showgirls or Las Vegas for that matter, in the same light again. Vicky Lewis Thompson has reached a whole new dimension in laughter. You will see what I mean while a smile is on your face, a tear is in your eye, and you are giggling from beginning to end.

A big . . .BRAVO to Vicky Lewis Thompson! This was definitely the best laugh-out-loud entertainment since Sandra Hill’s The Cajun Cowboy came out last June. Oh . . .and one more thing. Don’t worry if you haven’t read A Nerd In Shining Armor you won’t need to, even though I highly recommend that you do. The Nerd Who Loved Me is not a follow-up or sequel, just one TERRIFIC book you won’t want to miss!

Reviewed in July 2004 by Janice.

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