by Moira Reid, contemporary (2008)
Samhain Publishing, $2.50, ISBN 978-1-60504-030-1
As you can no doubt tell from its $2.50 cover price, Moira Reid's Seduction 101 is a very short story. Nonetheless, it feels satisfyingly complete and the pacing is good for a story of its length.
Meet Julia. She is trying to catch the eye of the newest guy in their advertising firm workplace, but Harris so far isn't biting the various baits she is throwing her way. Her antics definitely catch the eye of Eric, her best buddy whom she believes to be gay. Wait, Eric is gay, right? Of course he isn't, or else there won't be a story here. And just like every fool who has ever been in those shoes, instead of bringing out the bling-bling and telling Julia to pick him because he has a bigger bank account as well as the biggest penis in the land, he decides to get to Julia by offering to teach her over the weekend how to catch Harris' attention.
The whole premise has been overused way too many times, but in Seduction 101, Ms Reid manages to make the clichéd elements in her story work very well. She has the characters acknowledging playfully the sillier aspects of the premise, for example, and heaven knows, in this story, the characters can be quite silly when it comes to their feelings. Nonetheless, they may be silly but they are certainly not stupid, which makes a big difference when it comes to my enjoyment of the story. I'm not sure if I can really believe that they are in love by the end of the story, but that's okay, they do like each other and they can take it from there and find their way eventually.
Therefore, while Seduction 101 seems like another routine rehash of a familiar story on the surface, Ms Reid has managed to put a decent spin of her own on the formula and this makes her story fun to read as a result. The characters are likable silly fools and their falling in love, be it by the last page or five years later, does feel very right indeed.
Search for more reviews of works by this author: