Saturday, February 18, 2012

REVIEW: The Perfect Pumpkin Pie by Aaron Michaels

The Perfect Pumpkin PieThe Perfect Pumpkin Pie by Aaron Michaels
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

CAUTION: Long Review, Slight Spoilers

Leo the geek must overcome his insecurity if he is to find love with Judson the hunk in the novelette The Perfect Pumpkin Pie. Told in 3rd PoV from Leo’s side, the 14,000-ish words story begins with Denny criticizing his girlfriend Gloria on how to bake a pumpkin pie. Unsurprisingly, she later dumped baking ingredients on Denny and then stormed out, leaving Denny on his own to make a pumpkin pie. Enlisting his roommate’s help, Denny sent Leo to the grocery store... during Thanksgiving week. Yikes.
“I’m in pumpkin hell,” he muttered
You got that right, Leo.

Lo and Behold, a white knight on a horse in the form of Judson the assistant manager came to save Leo the dude in the distress. *swoon*

The Characters

+++ Denny

I liked Gloria despite her short appearance in the story, but I didn’t like Denny. Denny is “an anal, obsessive-compulsive perfectionist” who has “difficulties with the whole concept of sarcasm.” Now there’s a roommate from hell if I ever saw one. I also thought Denny was manipulative for “enlisting” Leo’s help by giving Leo two choices, one bad and one worse so that Leo would pick the bad one as Denny planned. I did not know why Leo couldn’t just say no to both and overall no to Denny.

I was not entirely convinced with Leo’s reason for why he put up with Denny, that reason being Denny accepting Leo for who Leo is. I thought Leo was the more accepting person for putting up with Denny's flaws.

Moreover, there was a big inconsistency with Denny's character. He found nutmeg to be a poison, but he didn't have a problem with canned pumpkin unless they're dented, however miniscule. Don't canned food have that toxic thing called BPA? And not to mention the preservatives.

+++ Leo

Low self-esteem characters generally do not endear me, but Leo was an exception. There was one moment when Leo’s insecurity grated my nerve, but it was one moment of annoyance in total for the story. I truly thought he was “cute” as Judson as aptly complimented him. Leo was not a pushover as I initially thought when he refused Denny in favor for his second-appointed date with Judson. I read with amusement as Leo nervously waited for Judson to come to Leo’s place for their third-appointed date.

+++ Judson

Judson was hot, and it wasn’t just because he was physically attractive. He was hot because he helped Leo, not once but twice even after Leo stood Judson up for their first-appointed date. More than being nice, he was hot for being forgiving. He was also hot because he was tired of one-night stands and being treated as such and now prefer a serious relationship. A guy who’s not afraid but wants commitment? Hot!

But wait, it doesn’t stop there. He cook and he look forward to meeting Leo’s family and friends. Better put a ring on that finger, Leo!

The Sexual Content

The sex content included long scenes of kissing and a short scene of mutual masturbation. There would have been shagging had someone not forgot the condoms. Dang it, Leo!

The Big Misunderstanding Trope

I didn’t like it and I thought the story could have been written without it while still keeping Leo’s low self-esteem personality and Judson’s forgiving nature intact. So when Leo showed up for his first-appointed date with Judson, he saw Judson with another hot guy. Wracked with insecurities, Leo left before Judson could see Leo. This was the moment of annoyance when Leo’s low self-esteem grated my nerve. For all Leo knows, the guy Judson was with could have been Judson’s brother!

And guess what? He was Judson’s brother. Ugh.

Fortunately, the story was quick-paced and soon Leo had to face Judson again where Judson quickly cleared up the matter. My annoyance was soon replaced with my hunger for ice cream; Leo and Judson had ice cream for their second-appointed, technically first date. With each passing appearance of Judson, I came to love him more.


In Denny’s attempt to cook The Perfect Pumpkin Pie, he unexpectedly led Leo to Leo’s perfect man. I concede; Denny was not all that bad. I rate The Perfect Pumpkin Pie 3 stars for I liked it. The story was most assuredly a yummy read.

Amazon GoodReads

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