Genre: Romantic Comedy
“I hereby call the first meeting of the Red Lipstick Coalition to order. We do so solemnly swear to use this shiny little tube of power to inspire braveness, boldness, and courage. We promise to jump when it’s scary, to stand tall when we want to hide, to scream our truth instead of whisper our fears. May we be mistresses of our destinies, and to hell with anyone who tries to tell us otherwise.”
Plot*: Marble isn’t the only thing that’s hard at this museum. His body is as chiseled as Adonis. His lips are as sculpted as David. And his ego is the size of the Guggenheim. You know the type—wolfish smile and the gravity of a black hole. The kind of man who sucks all the air from the room the second he enters it. My cocky boss thinks this internship was wasted on me, and he doesn’t hesitate to let me know. But he’s wrong, and I’m going to prove it to him. If I can stay away from his devil lips, that is. Lips that cut me down and kiss me in the same breath, leaving me certain he’s on a mission to ruin my life. And maybe my heart.
Review: Staci Hart’s Piece of Work is totally unique. It is a mixture between a smart romance** and a romantic comedy. There are a few laugh out loud moments. But what makes this book unique, in my opinion, is that it has a couple of powerful messages for women (and men too).
Powerful message #1: Be Confident / Become Who You Want to Be- In the beginning, Rin, our main character, is a 6 foot tall Korean-Dutch (yay, diversity!) academic who wears baggy jeans and men’s sweaters. She wants to hide from the world because it is her comfort zone. Then slowly, Rin grows into her own. She becomes a better version of herself. And no, it is not because of a shade of lipstick (though that is what starts the transformation)…it is because Rin decides for herself that she doesn’t want to hide anymore. She decides she wants to be more. Everyone and anyone can be more without losing themselves.
Powerful message #2: Get Supportive Friends – Rin’s roommates and best friends are a wonderful bunch of ladies. They are so supportive of each other. They accept each other. They are there for the laughs and the tears. They call each other out when necessary. They are protective. They admire each other, inspire each other. You can feel the bond between them oozing off the pages. Reader, everyone needs supportive friends like that…even if it is just one.
Powerful message #3: Stand Up For Yourself / Don’t Be A Railroad – Without getting into too much of the plot, Rin’s romantic interest is a disaster. Court is overbearing, spasmodic, and a bit of a cave man. But Rin calls him out on his crap. She stands up for her wants and needs. She does not let him railroad or dictate her choices. When he crosses the line, she pushes right back. Rin is strong. And I love strong heroines.
I know this is a lot to take in and you may discount some of the themes. But Reader, this book spoke to me. I hope it does to you too.
Recommendation: Read it. It’s a quirky, romantic read with a few powerful messages.
* I LOVE the plot summary for this book. It is far more amusing than I think I can be (Maybe… I’m more of a witty, sarcastic funny). My plot summary would be something like: Super smart, yet awkward woman lands her dream internship at the Met working for a brooding, extremely hot man who doesn’t thinks she deserves it. She set out to prove him wrong…. That just doesn’t have the same ring to it, does it? No…It doesn’t. So let’s just stick with the original.
** Smart romance – let me attempt to not butcher this definition. A smart romance is a romance that involves a little more academic thinking than most or it involves literary quotes or characters with really high IQs, etc. Penny Reid is the queen of the Smart Romance. This book reminded me of Penny.