Price of a Kiss by Linda Kage
Released: August 15, 2013
Reviewed by Mandi
When I read in the blurb that this new adult book featured a hero who is a gigolo, I had to read it.
Mason Lowe has a sister with cerebral palsy and a single mom who works and works. Their rented house is owned by their next door neighbor who is about to evict them for not keeping up with the rent. But the lady next door also proposes that if eighteen year old Mason sleep with her, debts will be forgiven. Mason is a virgin at this point, but doesn’t want his family to be out on the streets, so off he goes to stick his wenis in the neighbor. He is so good, he starts to get hired by all the older ladies at the country club he works at. He becomes a gigolo, whispered about by the town.
Fast forward two years, Reese has moved in with her cousin to go to college after being stalked, cut and almost dying at the hands of her boyfriend back home. Now with a new name she hopes to escape her stalker (who is not in jail due to a rich daddy) and live a normal life. She meets Mason on campus and gets filled in with all the gossip about him being a gigolo. Although he gets used a lot, Reese can’t help but feel attracted to Mason. When she takes on a babysitting job, watching over Reese’s sister, they start to see more of each other. Mason has never had sex for “free” (oh the angst!) and all Reese wants is for Mason to feel loved and not judged.
Price of a Kiss surprised me in that it’s not your normal dark, angsty, broody type of new adult. There is some angst, but Reese is quite silly making this a little more light-hearted. I was a bit off-put by Reese in the beginning. She is loud with no filter and a bit abrasive. Like when she first meets Mason’s sister who has cerebral palsy she thinks – “That kind of life had to suck monkey butt.” For some reason that made me not like her so much. But she turns out just to be – goofy but I came to like her qualities as the book went on. She doesn’t love that Mason sells his body, but she doesn’t get all judgy either.
Told all in Reese’s pov, I wish we had seen Mason outside of Reese’s eyes. Mason has this entire life of meeting women for sex that we never see. We only see the aftermath when he is pissed or sad about it. We get to know him to an extent, but I think we miss a lot of his life too. He gets frustrated with his plight in life
“Don’t you get it yet?” He stepped away some more until we no longer touched. “It doesn’t matter if I stop or not. This stigma, this curse, will never go away. Eighty years from now, People will read my obituary and say, ‘Mason Lowe? Wasn’t he that gigolo?’ God!” He squeezed his eyes closed and whipped his hand through his hair, grabbing fistfuls. “That even rhymes. They’ll probably make a damn limerick out of me and I’ll become an immortal prostitute.”
The ladies that buy his services are skeevy and in my opinion a bit over-written. They are too caricature and didn’t seem super realistic. That could be because we don’t see their interaction too much with Mason.
The stalker story comes into play – I’m not a huge fan of stalker storylines and this one is pretty predictable. But at least it wasn’t a huge part of the book until the end.
Overall this one was okay. I like the tone of this book but I wish we had gotten to know Mason a bit more.