Sunday, April 22, 2012

TLS Fics of the Week: The Fab Five reviews are up!

Better Than Pie by Savannavansmutsmut

Bella decides marriage will solve her financial problems and auctions herself off as a wife, only to be bought unknowingly by an unsuspecting Edward who cares for his meddling but well-meaning Down Syndrome brother, Emmett. All human and canon Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed by: Kelly Clwn

Better than pie opens with us finding out that Bella is struggling financially, although she is working two jobs, she is still finding it hard to make ends meet and is worried that should she become sick she would be homeless, so as a last resort she has auctioned herself off.

I checked the website again. I couldn't believe I was doing this, but it was working. I had put myself up for auction. Not for a slutty night of sex. I made sure they knew I wasn't in for that. No, I was auctioning myself off as a wife.

I could cook, clean, and iron with the best of them. My only requirement was that they support me through college and pay for my medical care as any husband would.

When the auction closes she emails the winner and invites him over to talk and have dinner with her, but the man at the door is not quite what she was expecting.

The man that arrived was short and plump. When he finally looked at me, I realized he had Downs Syndrome. I smiled and took his hand and led him inside.

"My name's Bella, what's yours?"

"I'm Edward tonight, I like being Edward. He's handsome."

I smiled; all my bidders had verified their finances before they were allowed to bid, so I wasn't worried. In fact, I was kind of relieved. If this guy needed a friend and wanted to marry me, I could do it.

However as the evening progresses it becomes more and more apparent that Bella cannot go through with marrying ‘Edward’, so she asks whom he lives with and if he needs picking up. Making the call, Bella speaks with a very angry man who is livid that she seems to be taking advantage of his brother, but eventually agrees to come and pick him up.

Thirty minutes later, I opened the door to a gorgeous man who looked furious. He was about to storm in when I stepped in front of him. "Now just settle down, there's no reason to get angry, it was all just a misunderstanding. I'm sure Edward here was just trying to help out."

"Edward?" he growled. "I'M Edward, that's Emmett," he snapped pointing sharply at the man I'd had dinner with.

After clearing up that misunderstanding, the real Edward is still annoyed with Bella when he finds out the reason Emmett was there in the first place, assuming she was after Emmett’s money and wondering why she doesn’t just ‘work as a maid’, but Bella quickly puts him in his place and explains her reasons.

Emmett, who has had the time of his life with Bella, is upset that he won’t get to see her again because she is so busy, but she quickly arranges a play date with some free time and Edward agrees, surprised that Bella wants to see Emmett again.

Still not trusting her motives, Edward watches Bella carefully through security cameras whilst she is visiting his home and it’s here he learns why Emmett took such drastic measures to find him a wife.

"You and Edward, you guys have to get married, he's sad and lonely, but he doesn't tell me. I have a friend at art class, her name is Rosie, but Edward doesn't have any friends."

Bella frowned and rubbed Emmett's shoulder. "Emmett, honey, you can't make Edward be my friend. I'm sure he has friends, but like me, he's just too busy to spend time with them."

Emmett shook his head no. "He doesn't say it, but he doesn't have friends because of me." Emmett sounded so sad. "His friend, Tanya, wouldn't come back and play after I met her, neither would Irina or Lauren. They don't like me so he doesn't like them."

Bella is appalled by this and asks to speak with Edward privately, laying into him about exposing Emmett to such awful women, however Edward explains that they were blind dates and he is equally as upset that Emmett had overheard what had been said.

Emmett is still all for them getting married, he likes Bella and loves his brother and wants to see him happy. Both Edward and Bella try to explain that things don’t work like that but Emmett is insistent. While Edward is not thrilled, he realizes that stopping Emmett is next to impossible, having been through his email and found several enquiries about Russian brides, knowing how much Emmett enjoys Bella’s company and being a busy man, he finds himself reluctantly agreeing to honor the original deal.

"You're not the one who gets to pick who I marry. I pick who I marry, Emmett," I said sternly.

He just rolled his eyes. "Well, pick Bella already; we need her as much as she needs us."

Bella blushed and covered her face with her hands. She had tears in her eyes when she reached for Emmett. "Hey, buddy, look, your brother doesn't want me, okay, so don't make him mad. We can still be friends, right?" she asked looking at me.

It all clicked in my head then. If I didn't get myself a wife soon, Emmett was sure to get around me again and send away for one. I didn't speak Russian, so we would be up a creek without a paddle. "No," I said with finality.

"No?" she gasped and looked between Emmett and me.

"No, I'm going to hold you to the contract. It was my handle that was used to bid on you and so ultimately, I won you."

She looked at me confused, "You want me to marry you?"

"Yes," I said annoyed that she sounded appalled. This was her idea in the first place. "I'll get the marriage license squared away."

Emmett started jumping around squealing hooray. "I get to keep my Bella!" he shouted and then picked her up, squishing her to his chest and spun her around.

So two weeks later Edward and Bella tie the knot and she moves into his mansion, separate bedrooms of course. Bella gets to experience Edward with Emmett and realizes he’s not as standoffish and cold as she first thought; it becomes clear that the brothers are incredibly close and adore each other.

Edward who is still cautious and observing Bella and Emmett’s relationship soon sees that she genuinely cares about his brother.

As the story progresses, we get to read along, as inevitably Edward and Bella start to get closer to one another, Emmett is always on hand with his happy go lucky nature and sometimes unwanted advice to help them along in their marriage.

Add in some troublesome puppies, nosy neighbors, some hormones and a large chested cook and what you have is a cute, sweet, funny tale, which will have you falling in love with savannavansmutsmut’s Emmett as quickly as Bella does.

Shamrocks & Shenanigans by Mathisson-rec'd by Nic

Bella is working for a catering and event planning company. She has just about pulled off the reception of the year when she's introduced to Edward Cullen, mafia boss. Can he show her that even bad guys can be good .AH/CC
Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed by: Twific Crackmum

The story opens at a wedding reception. Bella is a supervisor at the catering company which has been hired to handle the reception. Her sister Angela's ex-boyfriend, Mike Newton, is causing a scene. Mike also happens to be the father of Angela's little girl Abigail, but won't accept responsibility or pay any maintenance for her. Suddnely a tall, dark and hadsome man steps in to help diffuse the situation. Guess who? Turns out that Edward also happens to be Mike's boss. Edward compliments Bella on organising a great function and disappears into the night, but not before bestowing upon her one of his infamous nicknames. Bella is now "Legs".

The next day, after having dinner with her father Charlie, they happen to "run into" Edward outside in the car park. It's obvious that Edward and Charlie have met before, and Edward casually mentions that it's been too long since Charlie has visited the Cullen home. Edward is accompanied by on of his inevitable blonde skanks, who is non too pleased at the attention that Edward gives Bella.

Whilst out clubbing, Bella has another run-in with Mike. What she doesn't realise is that Edward is nearby, and hears her giving Mike and his girlfriend a piece of her mind about Mike being a dead-beat Dad and not financially supporting Abigail. Suddenly, money starts appearing in bank accounts and College Funds are set up in Abigails name. Bella starts to realise exactly how much pull Edward Cullen has, but still doesn't realise the nature of his "business".

Bella decides she wants to thank Edward personally for intervening in Angela's problems, and goes to his office, which just happens to be inside a strip club (hello Soprano's!). Edward is shocked and amused at her bold behaviour. Instead of her thanks, he asks to take her out to dinner:

"Not so fast, Isabella," Edward rose from his desk. I turned my attention back to him and sat back down in my chair. "Although it was very courageous for you to come here and thank me for helping your sister, I'm afraid I cannot accept only that." His eyes never left mine as he continued. "After all, I did get Fig to pay your sister a large sum of money, did I not? I'd say that mere words would not be quite sufficient."

I was at a loss for what to say at this point. This had not gone as I had planned. This was only supposed to take a few minutes and I would be on my way home. He was right; I was attracting unwanted attention.

"Then please, enlighten me on how I can properly thank you."

"Easy, Isabella, have dinner with me."

So begins the "wooing", which Bella is resistant to, and which Edward gets hopelessly wrong. It's clear that Edward is trying to win fair Bella's heart, which does not go down well with the army of skanks that are always in attendance wherever he goes. Some sticky situations ensue, and there are some really funny moments. There are only 8 chapters of this story posted so far, so the story hasn't really "hit it's straps" yet. The Volturi have just arrived on the scene (the Italian Mafia arm), so I'm sure that's going to mean trouble. There's lots of snarky dialogue to entertain, and I can't wait to find out how (if?) Edward finally gets Bella.

The Agreement by Gemgirl65

 A virgin. An escort. A contract signed. But falling in love wasn't part of the agreement... AH, E&B
Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed by: coldplaywhore

Not that long ago, I realized that all the WIP’s I was reading were beginning to wind down and I needed something new to read. The lovely Ed Mazin had mentioned a one shot on the Lemonade Stand Facebook group entitled ‘The Guitar’, so I read it and really enjoyed it.  Of course then I had to scan the authors’ page to see what else she had written and lo and behold, I found The Agreement.

Bella is a nineteen year old virgin who knows exactly what she wants – to not still be a virgin when she turns 20. So, to accomplish her goals, Bella dips into her savings and hires herself an escort for a night full of romance and sex. Enter, Edward Cullen – the escort.

The story is currently a slow build as Edward and Bella get to know each other and their motives, desires and goals while in their hotel room for the night.  They are both intrigued and enamored by the other, and they both wish that they had met under different circumstances, but they will take what they can get. Considering Edward is the escort, he’s remarkably nervous about it all, and Bella, who should be shy and tentative about losing her v-card is much more confident. It’s an interesting dynamic they’ve got going on.

"Are you sure you want to do this now?" He reached out and touched his fingertips to the dark silk growing from her temple. "We could watch a movie first. Or finish our game. I promise to answer all your questions without flying off the handle."

"I might take you up on that. Later," she answered. Her hand crept up to touch the soft terry opening of his bathrobe, then slid inside. She located his heart within seconds, pressing her hot fingers against its rapid beat. His own breathing matched the pace of hers now. His hand drifted down from her hair to the side of her face, caressing her warm skin. He couldn't stop staring into her eyes, so trusting, so willing. So ready.

She looked up at him curiously. He seemed to be as nervous as she was, maybe more so - yet another thing about this evening that didn't make any sense.

"Your heart is beating so fast," she said, her eyes questioning him. "You aren't a virgin too, are you?" she added with a laugh.

His face cracked with that slightly crooked grin of his. "No, not like you think. But the truth is, I've never done this before, either."

Her forehead scrunched in confusion. "What . . . ?" she began, shaking her head.

"I've never taken anyone's virginity."

Though the story is only 10 chapters in, Gemgirl65 updates fairly regularly and each new chapter leaves me wanting more! Go read it!

Vines by FictionFreak95

After years of running away, Edward Cullen finds himself back at his family's Napa Valley vineyard. What should have been a short trip & quick sell of an old run down crop turns into one of the hardest decisions he never thought he'd have to make. AH, BxE Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed by: Obsmama

On a fall day in 2010 I opened up the prologue of Fictionfreak95’s Vines and I still remember smiling at the thought of reading a armyward from Jo.  The idea of it so different from what she had done in her past stories.  How little did I know that this story would be like NOTHING I thought.  It wouldn’t just be about a soldier serving his country, it would be about a man and the complexities of life and love. It would be about healing your past and saying goodbye to things that can never be changed.  I will admit that it is a rollercoaster of emotions but in all the truest, best ways.  That beautiful fall day I was introduced to Grape Guy and Pie Girl.

We meet Edward on his way home for the first time in more than 4 years.  The family vineyard in Napa, it’s the last place on the planet Edward wants to be and the circumstances for his return are grim.  But as soon as he lands back in town he meets someone that changes everything.

"Can I help you with those? Looks like a lot of…"

"Don't…" she hesitated, reaching. "…Please don't drop that, it's got very expensive machinery in it," she frantically instructed as she reached harder for the bag.

I held it out to her but then hesitated, and pulled it back. "Expensive machinery…hmmm," I put on a serious face. "You have a pipe bomb in there, miss?" I asked her, pretending to go about searching her private property.

I don't think she exactly knew how to react to me and I wasn't even sure myself why I was engaging in the tease but I just couldn't resist, she was so…stressed.

I wanted to laugh at her. Or, make her laugh, rather. So, I eyed her, suspiciously.

"You planning on blowing up the station?"

"That's not funny."

I scowled. "It was a little funny."

"Um, no, it really wasn't, do you have any idea how many people are risking their lives every day overseas for our country because someone thought bombing us was a good idea?"

So serious.

"I have an inkling," I chided, and with that chide, I added a smirk. Hell, I couldn't help myself.

Something that was apparently becoming habit with this woman.

"Yeah? Well your inkling should probably be better put to use by doing some research, pal, now if you don't mind…I…"


"Oh, I mind…I mind very much," I grinned, blocking her path with my body.

Her eyes were…deep. And looked sad, oddly enough, I thought.

Why in the Hell was I even doing this? I had shit to take care of.

A vineyard to sell.

Still, she was kinda cute.

Bella is facing her own set of struggles when she meets this strange, blunt guy in Edward. Her life isn’t hers anymore and it's quickly spiraling out of her control as a wedding looms in her very near future.

In wine tasting, it’s the back notes of it that make the difference between a good glass and a great glass.  The same thing applies to storytelling and it's what Jo does so well; she brings in so much rich history and character depth without bogging the story down or slowing the plot progression.  She tells us a beautiful love story, not just between Edward and Bella, but of all the relationships in their lives.  The heat and passion between them is unparalleled, she grips us with each and every encounter but there are moments which you see each of their vulnerabilities.  These glimpses of bitter behind the sweet that will leave you yearning and heartbroken.

I knew how to make a woman cum.

I especially knew how to make Bella cum.

I loved making her cum.

But this… this wasn't about sex and orgasms. It was about conveying to her that I would miss her.

Miss this.

Being with her.

My tongue told the tiny nub of sensitivity on the outside.

My fingers told her on the inside.

And when she came, the sounds she made told me the same things.

I kissed her quivering belly, the dip between her breasts.

Her breasts.

And those nipples.

"Bite down," she whispered.

Eyes closed.

Arched body.

There are also these moments that made me want to crawl into the story; to breath in these beautiful sceneries, to taste the wine Edward was making at that winery where life had never made sense to him before his Pie Girl.  This is one of those love stories that makes you ache for a love like theirs.

"What do you want…Edward?" I asked him, softly, hardly able to speak, at that point, as he stood just outside the doorway, becoming more and more soaked by the minute.

But he didn't seem to mind as he remained there, leaning against the Hales door, closer to me than I'd originally thought he was.

A slight smile appeared on his lips, as he said one simple word.

One that was going to make every decision I'd made in the past few weeks seem…worthy.

"You," he said and I managed to remain expressionless, even though I was distinctly aware that my heart was about to jump him before I'd gotten a chance to.

I couldn't move.

Couldn't breathe.

Couldn't think.

And then he reiterated himself, in case I hadn't understood him the first time, I guessed.

"I want you, Pie Girl."

This is a story about the love between a father and son, it’s about new love, old love, and fading love.  It’s a story about the true beauty and heartbreak of love.  This is a story about all the complications of love.  I feel so fortunate to have gone on this journey with these characters, I think you will too.  It’s complete and waiting for you to fall in love.

Watching Her by Les16

She's his Drummer Girl. She plays. She dances. She's got secrets. He watches her. If he comes out of the woods will she let him in or close the doors forever? Daily Updates. AH.

Reviewed by: J'me Pretty

I should've come up with a better plan. I should've baked her a pie or a casserole or something and brought it over to welcome her to the neighborhood, or hell even just knocked on her front door and introduced myself as her neighbor … anything but leavingher a cryptic letter in the middle of the night.

Edward Cullen has a crush.

As the story opens, we meet Edward.  In the woods.  In a hoodie.

He likes to watch her…

Thinking about the brown-haired beauty that will be making an appearance any second makes me extremely happy about that.

It's not always easy, listening to the guys in the locker room go on and on about this chick or that chick and all the things they've done, but I know none of that's for me. Doesn't mean I don't want it, because Lord knows I really do, but up until now, not one girl I've ever met ever did much for me.

Not until her that is.

 Drummer Girl.

I don't know her name yet, so that's what I've started calling her in my head.

Pretty apt description I think, since she plays thevdrums. And when I say plays, the girl fucking rocks. The first night I crept through the dark and saw her, I about came in my pants watching her she was so fucking hot. Sweaty, hair flying everywhere, arms flexing with each up and down movement; I swear it was the most amazing thing I'd ever seen. I play the guitar and piano so I know about getting lost in the music, but her … shewasn't just lost, she was totally immersed. She played with such wild abandon, it was as if she was running, trying to escape some unseen or maybe even unknown force and wouldn't stop playing until she was safe.


If I had any thoughts of talking myself out of watching her, after seeing her that first night, after watching the way her chest heaved and her body swayed and moved, after watching the most gorgeous smile I've ever seen grace her face when she was done … any thought of being able to stay away flew right the fuck out the window.

I want to know what makes her play like the devil himself is chasing her.

I want to know what the hell she's doing awake every damn day at two in the morning.

I want to know why she looks so sad when she walks out of her house.

I want to know her.

I want her.

Her  is Drummer Girl, or Bella. He sees her driving through town and is instantly interested.   He's more than interested… he's invested.  Some might think he's obsessed—and that may be, but to me, he's your average teenage boy, hormones in overdrive, and completely twisted up in knots over a pretty girl.

As the story progresses, Edward starts to notice things about Bella.  He loves to watch her play the drums, listen to the music that comes from the building out back where she beats out the sounds with her sticks, but what he begins to see is that she's lonesome, and possibly hurting.

He cares for her, and each night that he returns to watch her and listen, he becomes more and more curious about the beautiful new girl.  That's when he decides to move things along and makes his move.

This is where the notebook comes in…

My mouth goes dry. My dick wants out so it can show its infinite appreciation for how sexy she looks. The blood that races through my veins feels warm, tingly, and my entire body shivers as I watch her practically skip toward the garage, her flip-flopsslapping against the asphalt. The sound floats through the still night air andby the time it reaches me, I'm finally able to swallow over the golf ball-sizedlump in my throat. 

"Please don't freak out. Please don't freak out. Please don't freak out," I chant andbang my head lightly against the tree to punctuate each word.

I don't know why I didn't, besides the fact that as much as I want to know her, find outeverything about her, I like watching her.

Call me a perverted sneak if you must, but it's the fucking truth. The way she moves, the way she plays, the secret smiles that come out of nowhere, except from deep inside ofher, keep me coming back night after night. 

She's going to freak, and she's going to hate me, I think and ball my hands up in tight fists inside of my hoodie. My heart leaps into my throat as she slowly makes her way toward her drum set. I know she hasn't seen the notebook or the sticks yet because she's looking in the direction of the bookshelf as she walks. God, I wish I knew why she has a shelf filled with self-help books, some medical books, and most strangely of all, a book on rebuilding car engines. It's driving me crazy, trying to reconcile those books with her, wondering how they connect. Are they hers? Has she read them, and if so why?

Oh, fuck. I begin panting, my breath choppy and quick. She takes another step and then comes to an abrupt stop. She sees the drumsticks and the notebook on the stool. Her head whips around and the wide, fear-filled eyes I see makes my stomach drop. She takes a tentative step forward and then stops again, closer, but not close enough to read the letter. My hands are on each of my legs, fingernails digging into the denim.

Shit, shit, motherfucking shit, I scream silently. I'm such a fucking asshole for doing this to her. I watch as she takes the final step, stopping directly in front of the stool.Her body is ramrod stiff and I swear I can feel her fear float through the air. Her mouth is open, her pink tongue darting in and out. There is no doubt if I were closer, I'd beable to hear the pounding of her heart. 

My feet are rooted to the ground; I'm frozen in place as if cement covers my shoes. I want to move, to go to her, to explain that I was only trying to do something nice for her, to make her smile. I'd tell her that all I want is to be her friend because shelooks so much like she needs one … that I could listen to her play for days andnever get tired of it. That I want her to be able to finish her song, that it'sall I can think about. 

I force my legs to move, just the smallest of steps before I'm the one that stops dead in my tracks. She's stepped closer, close enough now to read the letter. She liftsher hand, tentatively, inching it closer, so, so slowly, as if it's a snake,coiled and ready to strike at any moment.

Oh no, oh God, this is it. She takes the final step and I watch, spellbound and petrified as she gingerly picks up the drumsticks. Her hand closes around them and with her other, she holds the notebook. I'm transfixed, my lips pressed tightly together, holding every ounce of breath inside my body. 

Her eyes widen and in the next moment, she drops the notebook as if it's caught on fire and burned her hand. The pages flutter as it falls through the air. Clack, ping, clack, ping.The sound of the drumsticks dropping to the cement floor rings out, allow and desolate.

I'm sick. I'm so angry at myself.

You will love the notebook exchange.  He's adorable, scribbling down awkward sentiments while he tries to open communication.  He doesn't want to scare her off, but he's so tired of being a spectator.  He wants to know the girl that's wormed her way into his heart, the girl that he's never met, never exchanged a hello with…the girl that completely absorbs his every waking thought.

We start to wonder about Bella.  What's her story?  What's she doing in Forks?  Why is she so sad?  Why does she spend so much time alone?  Edward is bound and determined to find out what's going on with this girl, and Bella's just as stumped by Edward.  When we finally get to hear from her, we see a girl very confused by this odd attention.  She's not necessarily scared, but she's definitely wary of it.

With a hand that trembles so hard it looks like I suffer from Parkinson's disease, I reach out and pick up the drumsticks, gripping them so tightly in my hand my fingers turn white. I hold the notebook in my other hand, reading words but not comprehending them. I read once, then again, this time the words making sense … but not.

Drummer Girl … last night … afraid … won't hurt you … My mind plucks outwords, each one more ominous somehow than the one before. Like I've beenshocked, I loosen my hands.

Oh, God.

I turn around quickly, my hair swinging. I can feel the rush of air from moving so fast. I stare out into the night, wondering, knowing that whoever the freak is, he's probably out there right now, watching me, probably through binoculars, leering, panting doing God knows what to himself.

Perverted fucker.

Yeah, she's very guarded about her admirer, but as the story progresses, and she begins to trust him, she finds some comfort in having someone to talk to and confide in.

I was blown away with this story.  When Erin first told me about the idea, I was instantly excited.  She's got a good thing going with this story—andbonus… it updates DAILY.  How can you beat that?  Plus, with daily teasers as well as coordinating Disney characters for each chapter, you are in for one unique journey with Watching Her.

Edward and Bella still haven't met face to face, but that's the great part—you have time to catch up!  There's so much going on, so much to wonder about, and Edward's inner monologue is truly entertaining.  You'll have a crush of your own after chapter 1.  He's just an adorable creeper.

I am honored to be a pre-reader, so knowing what's in store makes me even more excited about reviewing this.  I can't say it enough.  This story is one that will suck you in right away, and keep you hanging on the edge of your seat foreach update.  Do yourself a favor and give this story a read.  You will not be disappointed.

1 comment:

  1. Debbie in Sl. FloridaApril 23, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    Oh, my god!! How can there be no comments??! I know I'm not the only other person who's absolutely, positively crazy about this story! It's everything J'me Pretty said about it and more! Erin (les16) is such an amazing writer, and she knows just how to reel her readers in, inch by inch, little by little, and keeps us coming back for more. You will absolutely LOVE this Edward. He's so incredibly sweet, he brings tears to my eyes, and I sure didn't expect that when I started this story (where were boys like that when I was 17??!) Anyway, go read this story NOW, and when you're caught up, read her other stories, cuz every one of them is simply amazing. Surely you'll fall in love with her writing like I have. And as a bonus, she writes from EPOV a lot, which for me is just all around win!