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January’s Book

Bet MeLiterary Content Here
Jenny Crusie Bio Here


Min Dobbs knows that happily-ever-after is a fairy tale, especially with a man like Cal Morrisey, who asked her to dinner to win a bet. Cal Morrisey knows commitment is impossible, especially with a woman as cranky as Min Dobbs. When they say good-bye at the end of their evening, they cut their losses and agree never to see each other again.

But Fate has other plans, and it’s not long before Min and Cal are dealing with meddling friends, wedding cake, a jealous ex-boyfriend, Krispy Kremes, a determined psychologist, chaos theory, a frantic bride, Chicken Marsala, a mutant cat, snow globes, two Mothers-from-Hell, great shoes, and more risky propositions than either of them ever dreamed of including the biggest gamble of all--unconditional love.


Story Note by Jennifer Crusie:
I wrote the first version of Bet Me back in 1992 and sent it out everywhere. Editors were universally unenthusiastic about it, which was just inexplicable to me. Fast forward ten years and my agent, who regards an unsold manuscript the way Nature feels about vacuums, said, “Send me Bet Me. It can’t be that bad.” I dug out the manuscript and sent it to her, and she sold it to my genius editor, Jennifer Enderlin at St. Martin’s, who said, “Uh, you are going to rewrite this, right?” “Absolutely,” I told her. “It should take me a month or two tops.” “Great,” she said. “We’ll do it as a paperback original,” which I translated as “Let’s not call a lot of attention to this one, okay?”

Then I read it for the first time in ten years.

First I would like to thank the dozens of editors who turned Bet Me down in 1992, thus saving my reputation and probably my career. The original of this book stunk on ice. And since I hadn’t bothered to read through it and discover that before I went to contract, I was left staring into the abyss of my own lousy writing. I started cutting everything that was bad—my computer ran red for weeks—and then I began to rewrite, listening to the two Elvises on the stereo and eating a lot of Krispy Kremes and Chicken Marsala. Eleven months past deadline later, I had less than five thousand words of the old book left, but another hundred thousand plus of new words, better words, that added up to a story I loved. That’s very unusual for me; usually I want to kill myself when a book is done because it’s so far from what I wanted it to be. But Bet Me made me happy, it was the first flat-out, unapologetic romance I’d written in a long time, and I loved every semi-colon in it, even though I knew everybody else was going to hate because it was a Cheesy Romance.

“Well, the hell with them,” I decided, “the world needs more cheese in it,” and sent it off to my incredibly patient editor and waited for her to tell me it was terrible, it was sappy, it was stupid, it was unpublishable. Instead she called and said, “I love this book. We all love this book. It’s the Crusie-est of all the books you’ve ever written, and we’re putting it into hardcover.” Anne Twomey of St. Martin’s designed the perfect cover for it, the marketing department went all out in planning the promotion, and I’ve agreed to tour, even though I’m a wimp about traveling. As I write this, we’re waiting for the first reviews, and for the first time, I don’t care what they say. I love this book and that’s enough.

Oh, and for the record, Chapter Seventeen is not an epilogue. An epilogue is the stuff that comes after the story is finished which is why I hate them since a story should end when it’s finished. If you read the first four words of Chapter One and the last line of Chapter Seventeen, you’ll see that Chapter Seventeen is not, in any way, an epilogue. It is the end of the book. I spit on epilogues. Thank you..