I fell in love with this book before I was through the first chapter. It is the sunshiniest. smooshiest, center of the cinnamon rolliest romance. It’s funny and surprisingly sexy, but mostly it hits on the importance of finding people who value you for yourself.
Zylar of Kith Balak has only one more chance to be approved for mating. He thinks he’s going to meet a prospective mate with whom to enter the Choosing competition but something happens to his ship and he lands on Earth. Beryl Bowman is trying to fulfill her community service hours by picking up after a medieval battle reenactment. She brought her dog, Snaps, along for company. Zylar, thinking his intended has been attacked, “rescues” Beryl and Snaps from the approaching enemy and whisks them to his home planet.
Beryl’s life on Earth has not been going all that well, so when she finds herself accidentally abducted and not the subject of any anal probing, she decides to roll with it. She commits to participating in the Choosing – think reality dating show + The Hunger Games. Outside of the competition, Beryl, Zylar and Snaps bond.
Zylar and Beryl initially find each other terrifying. They don’t share a species, a physiognomy, or a culture. They have to learn each other because they have no shortcuts to understanding. The process of watching them come to appreciate and love each other filled my heart region with the kind of squishy warmth I get around puppies and kittens. It is sweet, but not saccharine.
For all that this book involves an alien abduction and cross species romance, Strange Love isn’t a novelty romance. The book is funny, but not written for laughs. The sex isn’t written to be titillation, it’s emotional and part of the bond they form. I can’t recommend this one enough.