Clarence “Woody” Woods is the assistant dock master at the Trade Winds Yacht Club, an exclusive enclave that serves the elite of Miami – some with more money than sense. A good natured man, Woody dreams of fulfilling a promise made to his Grandfather and fulfilling his dream of sailing solo around the world on the boat he’s painstakingly restored.
All his dreams change when he sets eyes on Romanian Madalina Dragoi, the new waitress at the Club. It’s love at first sight for Woody but unfortunately Madalina is infatuated with Todd Hollingshead, a wealthy Club regular. All hope appears lost until Woody meets “The Prince,” an enchanted fish he catches during an afternoon excursion. In exchange for his freedom, The Prince promises to make all Woody’s dreams come true. Can a talking tuna help him win the girl of his dreams?
Jane May’s newest book, Hooked, is a 21st-century retelling of the classic Grimm’s fairytale, The Fisherman and His Wife. Woody will be granted all his wishes if he releases the talking tuna. At first uncertain about accepting, Woody’s initial wish is simply a date with Madalina but simplicity ends once she discovers The Prince’s abilities. Soon the wishes are spiraling out of control as Madalina demands a South Beach lifestyle.
It is when Madalina becomes a stereotypical greedy immigrant that May’s story turns from charming to disappointing. May eschews character development for caricature, keeping Madalina and Todd cardboard cutouts. Tension and drama could have been added to the fluffy plot with minimal effort, making this more than a forgettable read.
Hooked is perfect for an entertaining afternoon on the beach or when you’re in the mood for brain candy. Unfortunately, it will be quickly forgotten rather than being the morality tale the Brothers Grimm intended.
Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation
Publication Date: September 25, 2007
tags: books book reviews romance Jane May