Pass the Hot Stuff is a fun travel novel to read. It centers on the life of Blythe Townsend, particularly on her relationships with her boyfriend, family, and friends. This woman empowering novel describes how Blythe deals with the different challenges life throws at her – including Mr. Tall, Dark, and Eye Candy, Blake St. Germaine.
I found this book on Book Club Reading List. Aside from the wonderful descriptions of Memphis and New Orleans, this travel novel has captivated my heart and had me glued to every page. Its unique way of dealing with what I think are common problems of most adult women today will surely make it difficult for you to put the book down.
This travel novel is rich with family values and culture that play a role in one’s overall attitude and character. In fact, I do believe that Blythe’s relationship with her father, and how he constantly nags her to get settled with a guy that he approves of, are the reasons why she chose to stay with Robert even though she feels no emotion and no spark of love or lust. And although this is not mentioned in the book, I believe that Blythe’s actions somehow circle around her father’s approval of her. It’s clear she wants her father to accept her as she is and this is what pushes her into making certain decisions in life.
While she’s doing all that she can to make her relationship with Robert work out, she also finds herself travelling to Memphis to check on her ill grandmother. Here’s a part where Blythe, her mother Katie, and her sister Remy went for a girl’s night out in one of the famous clubs in Beale Street. This is definitely what every girl needs in the midst of various life challenges. If I’d be given the chance to visit Memphis, I will definitely not miss this bar!
Beale Street was packed on a Saturday night with tourists and locals, alike. It was standing room only in B.B. King’s, but a young, college-age waiter flirting with Katie found them a table…
The trio sat at a table near the band and dance floor. Katie and Blythe were both cold, so they ordered hot drinks; a coffee and Kahlua for Katie, a coffee with a splash of Frangelica for Blythe and a crantini for Remy. As the band played “The Blues Is Alright,” drunken tourists went into a frenzy on the dance floor…
They quickly lost interest in their Shirley Temple friends as the Beale Street Flippers came in and did their acrobatics, flipping across the dance floor. As everyone threw dollars to them, the band began to play a fast, hip-shaking blues song. The place had gone into such high energy, no one knew where to look. After the Flippers, the dancing went into freak mode with young and old shaking parts of their bodies they didn’t even know they had.
And this part where Blythe described how Mardi Gras is celebrated in New Orleans almost made me book a flight to the state in time for this festival!
It was a flurry of maskers in wild costumes and enormous floats bedecked in purple, green and gold – the colors of Mardi Gras. A giant fleur de lis, over-sized masks and even bigger headdresses covered in elaborately colored feathers – red, purple, turquoise, green, black, white, some all one color, some bursting with a garden off vivid tones – filled the floats and the streets. Children sat on the shoulders of their parents, reaching for ‘throws’ – candy, beads and doubloons and shouting the ubiquitous ‘throw me something, mister.’ Beads hung in trees from people who had tossed with bad aim, and beads were waved in the air like winning lottery tickets.
While Blythe is dealing with her problems with Robert and her father, she meets Mr. Tall, Dark, and Eye Candy Blake St. Germaine – the greatest challenge in her life and also the missing piece of the life she wants and truly deserves.
What makes this travel book a fun and great read – aside from the literal and graphical descriptions of Blake and Blythe and their secret rendezvous – is the strong portrayal of how women deal with their problems which is through discussing with friends and family. I loved that Blythe is able to reach her mother, sister, and friend anytime she needs them to talk about Robert and Blake. There was even a scene where she talked to all three of them via Skype.
Despite her issues with her father, Blythe was able to go through her problems and make a smart choice between Blake and Robert because of the unending support from her family and friends. This is why at the end, she was finally able to overcome the ghosts of her past and childhood and emerge as a strong woman.
I give this travel novel a rating of four beach umbrellas and highly recommend this book to every woman looking for some motivation on how to deal with life’s challenges. This travel novel will not only take your mind off your problems. It will also empower you to be the strong woman that you are and be able to face your fears and stand up on your own. Plus, of course, it will definitely make you want to go the different clubs in Beale Street and experience the Mardi Gras celebration in New Orleans.
About the Author
Dana Page was raised in Memphis, Tennessee. Born just down the road from Memphis in Helena, Arkansas, she considers the Mississippi River Delta her own personal inspiration. Having earned a degree in journalism from Texas A&M University, she has worked as a reporter, writer and columnist. Pass the Hot Stuff is Dana’s debut novel. She can be reached at her website www.danapage.net.