Denny’s content with the life she’s built. Her job as a cashier at a local grocery store has enabled her to help provide a stable home for her younger sister and her niece. They are the center of her world, so her lack of a romantic life is bearable. She’s never been good at flirting or dating, and in her eyes her physical appearance isn’t going to have the ladies lining up at her door.
On an unremarkable day, she receives a text that will change her life. The text is from a young woman asking for dating advice, only she’s typed in the wrong number. Denny offers up her opinion and lets the woman know she didn’t text her best friend Heather.
Eliza is Denny’s polar opposite. She’s gregarious and witty, and straight. She’s been having epic dating failures with the dating app she’s been using, and she starts texting with Denny just for fun.
Their texts become the highlights of each day. Denny’s nervous because she’s yet to tell Eliza she’s a woman, let alone a lesbian. When she breaks the news, it doesn’t faze Eliza in the least. She’s still eager to meet Denny face to face.
Once Denny summons the courage to get together with Eliza, they experience an immediate connection. Denny fell for Eliza when they were texting, but up close and personal, she can’t deny her serious crush on the much younger woman. Eliza’s puzzled. The more time she spends with Denny, the less interest she has in finding Mr. Right. In fact, she doesn’t understand why the men the dating app sets her up with can’t be more like Denny. Denny’s everything Eliza’s looking for in a partner. It doesn’t make any sense, until it does.
Did texting the wrong number, bring Eliza the person she’s meant to love?
Both Denny and Eliza are charming characters. They are kind, compassionate women who bring out the best in each other. I never doubted their chemistry. It isn’t the kind that sparks to life like a Tesla coil. It begins with a warm glow and slowly builds as Jae feeds it fuel.
I’m so in love with Denny. She’s awkward, shy, fashion challenged, over 40, and on the chubby side. In other words – not your typical lesfic main character. It’s fun to get caught up in a story full of gorgeous women who know just what to say and do, but I need characters like Denny, too. Afterall, I’m more Denny than a supermodel. Her real beauty is what’s on the inside. She’s incredibly kind, thoughtful, and respectful. I think she might be my favorite character of Jae’s, but I seem to say that after every new book. Denny’s shyness comes from her sense of not fitting in. She’s self-conscious of the way she looks. She’s felt that way all her life, and it’s caused her to retreat into herself as a way of warding off rejection. When she has the opportunity to text with Eliza, her anonymity gives her a level of freedom to express herself in a way she’s never been able to. Little by little she summons the inner strength to reveal more of herself until she’s willing to meet Eliza face to face. She’s a tremendously loyal woman and is bound and determined to support Eliza as she looks for Mr. Right. It might break her heart, but she’s willing to place Eliza’s happiness before her own. It was delightful to watch Denny come out of her shell and accept her own awesomeness.
Eliza is so carefree and positive. She really is this breath of fresh air sweeping into Denny’s world, bringing with her a whole new perspective on life. She gives Denny encouragement and time to get comfortable with their friendship. She’s surprised and a little overwhelmed when she realizes that none of the guys she goes on dates with measure up to Denny. She’s not sure what’s going on. She’s never been attracted to a woman, and she’s not attracted to women in general. She realizes Denny’s her person. Only Denny gives her butterflies and makes her heart race. Eliza is in the process of understanding why she’s only attracted to Denny. Eliza knows she’s not straight. She loves Denny and that’s all she needs to know for the time being. Kudos to Denny and Jae for not making her pick a label while she’s still working things out for herself. All of this made Eliza feel natural and authentic.
The Writing Style
You can always count on Jae to create a world that feels 100% authentic. Her research and attention to detail is stunning. I’ve never been to Portland, but after reading Wrong Number, Right Woman, I feel like I know it well. Her vivid descriptions of the everyday locales bring each scene to life, and I’m ready to pack my bags.
The contrast in Denny’s ability to express herself via text rather than over the phone or in person is adorable. While there’s a noticeable difference, Jae achieves it with a subtlety that doesn’t make it seem far-fetched. Jae also uses Eliza’s physicality to show her openness and overall positive attitude. Ther’re all sorts of subtle little nuggets slipped into the story that give the reader insight into what makes each of them tick. I guess what I’m trying to say is the character work is fab.
My Favourite Parts
I appreciate Jae’s dedication to inclusivity and representation of all people in the LGBTQI community. Eliza’s best friend is a trans woman who’s a lesbian. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again – representation matters. Heather’s like most sidekicks in lesfic romances. She provides support, advice, and comic relief. She and Eliza talk about some of the challenges Heather faces when navigating the life of a single lesbian trying to find her Ms. Right. It’s important to see and hear these characters, and I’d love it if Heather got her own story down the road.
None from me.
This book has an incredibly high, “Awwwww” factor. There’s not much angst which normally doesn’t work for me, but the character development and steady plot kept me on a pink cloud from beginning to end. With Jae, I always know the writing is going to be top-notch, and she always presents characters who feel completely unique. I think we can all agree 2020 has been an absolute dumpster fire, but Wrong Number, Right Woman is just the book to take you away from the chaos in the world. It’s sweet, endearing, and heartwarming. Enjoy.
Excerpt from Wrong Number, Right Woman by Jae
“Eliza Louise Harrison,” she muttered, staring at her reflection in the mirror above the sink, “what the hell was that?”
Why had she asked Denny to meet her first? Despite her jokes about having been terribly spoiled as a child, she wasn’t an entitled brat. That “I became friends with her first, so I should get to meet her first” attitude so wasn’t her.
But then why was she behaving like a jealous teenager? If she didn’t know any better, she’d think she had a crush on Denny.
She chuckled, then stopped abruptly. No, that couldn’t be…could it?
Eliza stared at her flushed cheeks in the mirror. That was just from gulping down the red wine too fast, right?
She splashed some water onto her face, then looked back up into her own eyes.
Okay, time to be straight with herself. She smiled at her mental choice of words. By tomorrow morning, the red-wine flush would be gone, but she knew without a doubt she’d still want to be the first to meet Denny.
Maybe she did have a girl crush on her.
So what? No big deal. It happened, even to straight women. Denny was so incredibly sweet; who wouldn’t develop a crush on her?
Next week, they would finally meet, and while she had no doubt she would find Denny just as adorable in person, there would, of course, be no physical attraction.
Her crush would mature into a deep friendship, and maybe one day, she would be the bridesmaid looking for a hookup at Denny and Heather’s wedding.
Okay, she probably wouldn’t, since she wasn’t the hookup type. But she hoped the friendship part of her prediction would come true, and she and Denny would be in each other’s lives for many years to come.
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Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9783963244018
- Publisher: Ylva Publishing
- Jae Online
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