Book Review: “Cupid’s Match” by Lauren Palphreyman

Title: Cupid’s Match
Author: Lauren Palphreyman
Genre: Urban fantasy/romance
Intended audience: YA
Date Read: 07/07/19 – 15/07/19
Rating: ★★★

Review:

I am a fan of ancient-gods-in-modern-times type stories, so I was definitely interested when I saw this one available on Netgalley. Is one of those books where I really enjoyed parts of it, but there were other aspects I had qualms about, enough to affect my enjoyment.

The romance is where I felt the book’s main strength lay. While I did actually spend a fair chunk thinking/hoping it was going to take a different direction, it built the relationship between Lila and Cupid quite well. They had a decent amount of chemistry and there was certainly some entertaining banter between them.

I did feel some of the plotting was a bit weak. For example, after a character jumps off a building in the height of passion (don’t worry, he survives), rather than being completely horrified and upset, his classmates all decide they should still go to a house party that night as planned, because… it’s whathe would have wanted or something? (Or, because the author needed the characters to be at that party, because it was plot relevant, regardless of whether it made sense.)

The policy documents for the Cupid Matchmaking Agency, supposedly written two or three millenia ago, were written in modern-day corporate speak, which was amusing, but didn’t make much sense. And in her nightmare world, Pandora faces off with physical manifestations of the Seven Deadly Sins, a Christian construct.

The book does rely on the main character being kept in the dark about certain things until the other characters are ready for her to know and that got a bit tedious at times. Once that reveal came about, did enjoy the build up to the climax, even if the day seemed a little too easily won in the end.

Look, basically, this is one of those books that’s fine and entertaining for a while but ultimately not that memorable.


(Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review)

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#WIPpet Wednesday – introducing Unicorn Love

First of all, here is an article about a bunch of famous authors who dressed up as their favourite literary characters. There are photos. This is a thing that happened. Neil Gaiman’s is my favourite (which may have something to do with the fact that Badger is my favourite Wind in the Willows character)

nanowrimo_logoSo yesterday I wrote a big deep and meaningful goals post for the rest of the year. Well, for the next five months, since I have no idea what I’m going to feel like doing after NaNoWriMo. You can read that here. I was feeling really scattered and listless in regard to my writing; I only wrote 2879 words in the entire month of June, and I kept thinking about the stories I’ve started recently and not finished. The more I thought about it, the more upset I started feeling about everything. So I wrote a list, because lists are nice. And I’m feeling much better now.

While I didn’t really go into it in that post, I’m also making sure that I make this half of the year more about me. I’m taking it a bit slower at work (still getting everything done, just not necessarily blitzing through it like I normally would) and I’m going to start eating better, too. Admittedly, the eating better was supposed to start yesterday, but we had a party at work on Monday and there were leftovers, so… yeah. Working on that one. I’ve also got three days off approved for the beginning of August, and Edy and I have spent this evening booking a little trip away for ourselves, which will be really nice. I’ve only had two days off in the five months I’ve been in this job, and we’re entitled to four weeks’ annual leave, so I figured I ought to start using it.

Anyway, so as you may have gathered if you read the other post, Camp NaNoWriMo is a go, though I’m only aiming for 15500 words (500 words a day, easing back in slowly). As such, Afflicted is on hold, and we’ll see if I return to it (I was always calling it a post-show project, and by the time July is over, my group will be working on its next production, so I’ll have probably moved on…). My Camp story is one I found on the Adopt A Plot forum because I actually had no clue what I was going to write. It’s called Unicorn Love and if you want a synopsis, here is my Camp Page, but I’m hoping it (or at least the premise, anyway, as well as the reason for the title) is fairly obvious from the snippet. I’m sharing seven paragraphs for the seventh month but don’t worry, they’re short (fewer than 200 words)!

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Cupid, frustrated, breaks his bow. National Gallery, Athens, Greece

“I want out.”

Two hands smacked down on the glass desk, knocking aside the nameplate which displayed the name “Aphrodite” in a curly font that would have been considered unprofessional in any other workplace. The tip of a bow swung unsettlingly close to Aphrodite’s head, but she held up a dainty hand and it lost its momentum mid-swing.

The Goddess of Love raised her eyes to meet the gaze of the woman in front of her. Her perfect features creased in an expression of concern.

“Alexis, darling. Whatever is the matter?”

“Am I the only one who sees how pointless this job is now?”

“Alexis, a Cupid’s job is never pointless.”

“Really? Do you even know what it’s like? You’re not down there! You’ve got all this!” Alexis motioned around the glass office. All that could be seen out the windows was blue sky and a neat ring of fluffy white clouds around its base. “You don’t see the couples you brought together splitting up after a month or a week or some crap like that! Finding true love in this day and age is about as likely as finding a unicorn grazing in your back yard.”

Gotta say, somewhat-vacuous-but-secretly-knows-exactly-what-she’s-doing Aphrodite is very fun to write. Some of the world-building to do with the gods and the heaven-as-a-bureaucracy theme will have to be sorted out properly post-NaNo, but for now I’m just having fun with it. Which is to say, I’m slightly scared because I actually have no idea how the plot is going to go, but we’ll see. There were two people in today’s excerpt who will probably end up becoming characters, even if only to serve as padding. But I actually need some more characters from probably tomorrow onwards, and might as well use the ones that have already been foreshadowed, right?

I also had a moment earlier today where I was like, “Wait… Aphrodite is Greek… but isn’t Cupid Roman?!” but I’m ignoring that fact for now. Not even sure it really matters in a story like this.

Anyways, this post has turned into a bit of a mammoth thing, so I will finish up here. If you would like to join in on WIPpet Wednesday, just post an excerpt from your WIP that somehow correlates to the date, then link up with us here. We welcome new participants with open arms! 😀 All right, I’m off!

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Cupid image by Tilemahos Efthimiadis used under Creative Commons 2.0. Copyright 2009. Source.