Review: The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

The Kiss Quotient
(The Kiss Quotient #1)
by Helen Hoang
Publisher: Berkley
Publication date: June 6, 2018
Genre: Romance

A heartwarming and refreshing debut novel that proves one thing: there’s not enough data in the world to predict what will make your heart tick.

Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases–a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.

It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice–with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan–from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…

Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but to crave all the other things he’s making her feel. Soon, their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…



Words cannot express how amazing this debut novel is. I had seen a lot of people loving all over this book and I was so nervous to read it because I usually end up being the odd man out. So, I had some reservations with this one because of that. However, this book deserves to be screamed about from the rooftops. It was so real and honest, that it was so hard to not immediately fall in love with everyone in the story.

“She burst out laughing, and the sound worked into him and around him, fanning embers of happiness into full flame.”

I love all sorts of romances, and I’m no stranger to the relationship for-hire story. However, the author brought something new to the table, Stella. Stella has Asperger’s which causes her to react differently to touch, sight, and smell than most people would. Not only are her senses more sensitive, but she also has a routine that she has to stick with, has no filter, and when she latches onto something she becomes obsessed with it. Those attributes took Stella’s character from your typical cookie-cutter heroine and made her real and honest. I immediately felt at home with Stella, as if she were a friend and not some fictional character.

Michael was also a great character. Even though he doesn’t know about Stella’s autism, he somehow knows how to be around her that won’t freak her out. It’s like he had this sixth sense for her emotions and knew when to approach her and when to back off. Not only was he great with Stella, but he was down right amazing with his family. The fact that he went into escorting to pay for his mother’s medical bills was just heartbreaking. Then, to see him busting his butt working multiple jobs, while still being home to cook meals for his family just about made me a puddle at his feet.

Another thing that I really liked about this story was that Michael is half Vietnamese. So, there was a lot of his culture mixed into the story. From the titles the siblings have for each other based on their birth ranking, to the alter his family has in their home, to the cuisine they ate. Given that I live in a Vietnamese neighborhood, I really liked getting to see a lot of the culture mixed into the story, instead of being glossed over by the romance portion. Getting those little snippets into Michael’s home life really made the story more authentic.

I honestly could go on and on about this book. I just really loved this story and all the characters within it. I was already clamoring to get my hands on the next book before I was even halfway finished with this one. I’m so grateful that I had the opportunity to read this amazing debut novel. I’d hate to think that I would have missed out on such an amazing story otherwise. Now I have a new series to fangirl over and a new auto-buy author. Seriously, stop reading this review and grab a copy of this book.


My thoughts…

“All the things that make you different make you perfect.”



7 Thoughts on “Review: The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

  1. This is the first time I come across this book but, I must say, I get the nervousness you had at the beginning with lots of people sharing their love for it because I’m usually like you, so I’m glad I read your thoughts first. I’ll probably end up trying it myself, thanks, Kristin! 😉

  2. That’s so great that this book exceeded your expectations. Stella and Michael both sound like such great characters.

  3. oh it’s the first time I hear about it but it looks fun!

  4. That sounds like a book that I might like. Thanks for the great review.

  5. I have seen so much love for this book everywhere! I’m glad to see you enjoyed it, too.

    Great review.

  6. Yay for not being the odd girl out. That’s always my worry, too, when one has had such raves. lol

  7. I can’t wait to read this one! I have it on hold at the library. 😀

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