A Little Less Talk and a Lot More Action

LuAnne McLane
2008, Contemporary Romance
Signet Eclipse, $6.99, 304 pages, Amazon ASIN 0451224604

Grade: C+
Sensuality: Warm

I voted for LuAnn McLane's Dancing Shoes and Honky-Tonk Blues as best contemporary romance in AAR's 2007 Annual Poll, so was very eager to read her latest release. While I enjoyed reading A Little Less Talk and a Lot More Action, in the end, I could have done with a little more talk between the hero and heroine.

Macy McCoy is a hair stylist at her friend Jamie Lee's salon in Hootertown, Kentucky. Macy's had a crush on Jamie Lee's brother Luke since she was a child. Now, with Macy serving as her friend's Maid of Honor, and Luke as the Best Man, the two have been thrown together at wedding-related events for weeks.

Luke is a successful college football coach and Macy feels he's out of her league not only because of his looks (he's gorgeous and she's 20 pounds overweight), but also because he's "college educated" and she's never stepped on a college campus except to go to a football game. Normally, Luke treats her like a sister, but at the wedding and reception, it almost feels as if they're a couple on a date.

Before anything can happen between Luke and Macy, a country music star has a hair emergency while on a tour bus passing through Hootertown at the exact time Macy decides to go to the salon on a Sunday and is singing along to the star's latest hit on the radio. I had to suspend belief to accept all of this. Within a matter of hours, Macy becomes friends with the star and her entourage and is offered a permanent job in Nashville. It all felt rather like a fairy-tale rescue, but I did enjoy Macy's interactions with her new friends.

After a while, however, the book began to feel like a series of funny scenes. While I enjoyed them, I would have liked more focus on Luke and Macy, and less on her adventures in Nashville. While Macy spent a great deal of the book thinking about Luke, lusting after Luke, and talking about Luke to her new friends, Luke actually appears very infrequently in the book.

The book is written in first-person point-of-view in the present tense, also something that gave me a lot of trouble. We know Luke just from Macy's perspective, and don't know what he thinks of her for a long time. Since she feels inferior to him, that's the only information we have about him. Luke seemed nice enough, but I just never felt that I really got to know him.

A Little Less Talk and a Lot More Action is light and frothy. A little more substance would have taken it into "recommended" territory.

-- LinnieGayl Kimmel

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