Romance stories, that turn out to be heavy on the smut then hurtle towards the happy -ever only to be abruptly halted with a conflict and then 'to be continued' all in the last page. Uh, in my English class, conflict is meant to go in the middle of the story not the end. (hook-> conflict-> conclusion like a mountain in the middle, not hook-> multiple scrabble scenes-> conflict-> no conclusion but buy my next book!)
I only finished reading the book because I wanted to see how the authour managed to tie up all the weird wandering strands of storyline. They didn't. Authours, if you want to create a series, your main character must be more interesting than just being enthusiastic about scrabble and do something other than the man candy. I have no reason to purchase another book to read more of the same drivel when you've just shown you can't be counted on to reach any kind of conclusion that doesn't involve a big O.
I hate wasting my time. Will they or won't they romances that go on for multiple books require an alternate plot, like a mystery the main character also solves or danger or oceans eleven style theft, so that the reader wants to buy the next book to find out what kind of trouble they got into now.. If it is going to be all about scrabble, then it can't be vanilla scrabble.
One of my forays into reading urban fiction ended a lot like this. For two hundred pages, the heroine laments that she is ugly despite the fact that she isn't at all. She plays scrabble with one guy after another (because apparently these guys will play scrabble with any old critter that walks by, despite the fact that they all are described as being handsome and well off thanks to their various nefarious dealings with controlled substances). In the last twenty pages or so we discover that her best friend has been the cause of her lack of self esteem issues (she's been talking the heroine down behind her back and setting her up for every fall she ever took). Friend is then murdered by mystery killer--as well as the heroine's family. Heroine finally falls in love with another guy, a close family friend who is also very well to do from his dealings in those uncontrollable substances. And now she is about to have a baby with him and they are getting married (last five pages of the book) and wouldn't you know, HE is the one who killed her best friend AND her family for not appreciating what a treasure she is.
You would assume there's another hundred pages or so of her running like crazy to get away from him, but no, she says "I am about to marry the man of my dreams and I will just have to worry about these little things tomorrow."
Sorry, Scarlett, the man is a stonecold killer! Run! Get out while you can! And while you are at it, how about looking for a guy who isn't selling illegal substance for those who self medicate?
Indeed, pretty much ever one that has ever been recommended to me is the same: girl falls for drug dealer and runs his business while he is in prison or steals the business from him so she and her new lover can make money. The only time someone turned the genre on its head was in the story of a stripper who had fallen for a dealer...and by the tine she was so in love that they were planning to get married--he admits that he is an undercover cop. They DO marry and she goes to college to become a lawyer and it should have just stopped there because it was a fun romance without too much bad scrabble of any flavor. But the author had to revisit them and threaten the heroine's family if she didn't agree to go back to her old "job".
What I would also like to know is: why, with all the various jobs there are to study for, to all former gangster molls, strippers and ladies of the evening decide to go into law enforcement? (Catherine Willows springs to mind, but so do half a dozen other characters whose names I don't remember.) None of them ever become rocket scientists or engineers or computer technicians. Nope. They all become police officers or lawyers. Never seems to help their ex boyfriends, though.