I am not the heel here. Susan is.
This morning, she sent me the file containing Louisa Bacio’s The Big One. She’d had it since last Rocktober; it had gotten buried in her inbox. She’d even blogged about getting it, so we’ve all been waiting all this time. Especially me.
Let me tell you, this one was worth the wait. I wish I could do another post or three about it ’cause it’s that good and you all should go out and pick it up and read it. You really should.
If you remember, this is the one with the bomb shelter. The one with the marketing assistant ordered to show her dirty secret—the bomb shelter—to a potential client, the rocker. He may or may not be willing to shoot his next music video in there.
But disaster strikes, and believe me when I say it’s a lot less obvious on the page than it is in this review. And Kayla and Sebastian are trapped because she’s installed a lock that can’t be opened. It’s a way to keep looters out.
Or two people inside, she realizes.
This is a novella, which was the major downer of the whole experience. It took like an hour to read (Again, Susan! WHAT were you thinking???) and I got to the last page and wanted to reach out to Louise and shake her a good one. I wanted her to have Shaken Baby Syndrome ’cause I wanted more. More Kayla. More Sebastian.
But especially, more of what happened to them once they left the insulated bunker. That sucker is insulated in a lot of ways: from what is happening outside, and from what’s going on inside. The bunker becomes their safe place, where they can reveal parts of themselves that they’ve kept hidden from others. Maybe it’s the dark, maybe it’s knowing they are trapped, maybe it’s their attraction to each other… who knows? I don’t. And I don’t really want to. This isn’t one of those novellas that you want to think too much about. You want to sit back and go along for the ride even though these people are complex and real. None of that phone it in stereotype here. Well, okay, a little bit, and only where Sebastian is involved. He’s larger than life, of course. He’s a rock star! His charisma oozes out of him, even when he’s at his most vulnerable. But he’s also more than your normal stereotyped rocker, and that’s the best part of him.
This is a fun ride. It’s a sexy ride, with some great whoo boy hot love scenes. And I loved the way Sebastian talked about his man parts. Totally cracked me up. I’d kill for a man with that kind of sense of humor about himself.
My only complaint is that I wanted to be with Kayla and Sebastian longer. A lot longer. I want to know if they can make it once they’re together in the daylight.
Oh, okay, I’ve got another complaint. There’s talk of a periscope that Kayla has put in so she can see what’s going on outside. She peeks through it once. But then the whole idea of how bad it was, what’s going on, the idea of this secret tool to peek at the world from a hidden safe spot… none of that gets used. It’s dropped, and that’s too bad.
But, this was a novella, after all, and by definition, they gotta be short. Something always has to go in a novella, and here it wasn’t so major. I mean, it could have been the development of the characters.
I’m really glad character development didn’t suffer. It’s what makes this story so earth-shaking good. Get it? Earth shaking?
I’ll be here all night. Or so I’m told.