Kelly needs a date to her sister’s wedding. But Kelly is terrible with men. Conversely, she’s really great with robots. So in a fit of insanity, she turns her current work project “The Conifbot” into the “perfect man”. It’s so simple, she can write a program that gives her exactly what she’s looking for in a man and make him look exactly the way she wants. A few key strokes and she has what would take her months if not years of dating in the real world—provided she ever found someone at all.
She knows she’s walking a moral boundary, but she figures it won’t hurt anyone and it’s only for one night. Except one night turns into a weekend, and then a few weeks, and eventually a few months. And the perfect wedding date is now her perfect fiancé and she is in way too deep. She has no idea how to break it to her family that she can’t possibly get married and it’s getting harder for her to keep up appearances a work and pretend she hasn’t walked off with thousands of dollars of technology. Add in a little blackmail and it’s all she can do to keep everything from falling apart.
“She needed to drown out her thoughts: thoughts about the million and one more graceful ways in which she could have handled that situation. About how she couldn’t find a plus one on her own and couldn’t even hold onto the one that was handed to her. About how dating, the soul-sapping square dance of trying to find the right guy, sucked. About the fact that she really did still want to find the right guy, in spite of all the bruises that come with cracking your heart from its exoskeleton. About the fact that maybe she couldn’t find the right guy because she wasn’t the right person.”
I had the opportunity to read this book before it was ever published. I peer reviewed it and am even mentioned in the acknowledgements for my efforts. However, I had to read it again once it was published because I knew there would be changes. I have to say, I enjoyed it much more the second time through. I related far more with Kelly than I liked to admit. Her awkwardness with men paired with her general disinterest in dating Plus I know how it feels not only to be the only sibling unattached, but also the only grandchild. It’s a strange sort of pressure that’s hard to get out from under. It makes you feel like you’re living under a microscope. And you do start to wonder if maybe there is something wrong with you or that you aren’t trying hard enough.
I will say–there is an allusion to a robot sex scene, and that gets a little weird. In the first version, it was actually a graphic scene and I am grateful it was edited down to just an allusion. I just found that part hard to wrap my head around, even with suspension of disbelief.
I have sent copies to everyone I think would enjoy it. It has some really great lines that are so relatable for anyone who is exhausted by trying to find “the one”. It’s not a serious read–it’s something great for the beach or curled up with coffee on a weekend morning after a long week.
This book qualifies as my “Machinery” bingo square: Her boyfriend is a robot. Enough said.