REVIEW: GRAND SLAM BY KATHRYN LEDSON

GRAND SLAM

Author: Kathryn Ledson
Michael Joseph RRP $32.99
Review: Monique Mulligan

9780143799757Kathryn Ledson serves an ace with the third book in her Erica Jewell series, Grand Slam. Released just in time for the Australian Open 2016 (thinking that was a marketing decision with some foresight), the book features all sorts of shenanigans on and off the tennis court … basically, wherever Erica Jewell happens to be.

If you haven’t read any of the books in the series, you might like to read my reviews of the first two, Rough Diamond and Monkey Business. In essence, public relations executive Erica Jewell is unexpectedly recruited into a secret team of vigilantes, which is not a bad thing because Jack Jones, also part of the team, is one hot package. Fast forward a few escapades, which involve terrorist threats, missions on tropical islands, and plenty of romantic tension between Erica and Jack, and Erica is now far too busy to worry about whether Jack wants a relationship or not. Well, mostly too busy. The relationship question simmers in the background of Grand Slam as Erica juggles a handsome but temperamental tennis player who wants more than just a working relationship, near-misses of the death variety, her broccoli hair and the wig her mother bought her, living at home while renovations are being completed, and a new intern at Dega Oil. Not to mention a lost lucky amulet, oil rig explosions, plummeting share prices, social media, and the irritatingly amazing Sharon, the stunning helicopter pilot living at Jack’s house. Can Erica keep Emilio Mendez on side and on court, figure out Jack, get rid of Sharon and stay alive?

If you think tennis is boring, think again. Tennis in Grand Slam is pure entertainment. Not that readers (or Erica) get a lot of the on-court action, but what goes on away from the umpires and crowds is fun, fun, fun. The story is full of laugh-out-loud moments and double entendres, many courtesy of Erica’s mother (who is still my favourite character), and her wayward kitten. Award for classic line goes to ‘Erica’s pussy is so naughty, Tom’, closely followed by ‘Okay. Give me a minute and I’ll come.’ That one made me snort, which woke Blue Eyes and then I had some ‘splaining to do’. Ledson had a lot of fun writing this, I can tell.

Having read all three of Ledson’s books, I’d say this one is her best yet. She’s really come into her own with her writing and her character, Erica. Grand Slam is romantic escapism with laughs, mishaps and miscommunications – perfect for a girl’s night in. You know how you have that one friend who’s always getting into some kind of funny situation and they tell the story with much waving of hands and theatre, leaving you rolling your eyes and clutching your stomach simultaneously? That’s what it’s like reading about Erica Jewell. All I can say now is, more please!

Available from good bookstores. My copy was courtesy of Penguin Books Australia.