Dangerous Kiss

I was always aware of Jackie Collins’ books. She’s a prolific writer (32! over the course of her career) and it’s nearly impossible to miss her section at the local library. While I have always seen her books, I didn’t read one until a few years ago.

My first Jackie Collins novel was The Power Trip. I picked it up one afternoon when I had a few hours to burn before covering a town meeting for my old newspaper job. I was wandering around Rite Aid, looking for a snack when this book caught my eye. Dangerous Kiss is actually the first Jackie Collins novel I picked up at the library. The others I’ve read were all purchased at either the drug or grocery store.

I ended up reading the last few Lucky Santangelo novels – Dangerous Kiss being part of the franchise –  last year on spring break. I didn’t realize they were part of a series until I was 50 pages in. But by that point, I was hooked and there was no going back.

I thought DK was the first of the Lucky novels, but again, I goofed up. What I love about these books are how they can be read out of order. Sure, there’s merit to read the novels in order. But Jackie fills in all the details – if you forget something or pick up the books out of order it doesn’t matter. I love the dramatic and over the top action. Lucky Santangelo always preaches about “Santangelo Justice” as a consequence of any and all horrific events that go down in Collins’ version of the world. And trust me, there are plenty of incidents that involve any and all methods of Lucky sanctioned justice.

In this Santangelo novel, there’s a horrible crime that rips multiple families apart and drives a wedge between Lucky and her husband. Brigette, Lucky’s niece and one of the richest women in the world, meets a devastatingly handsome and dangerous man and Lucky’s friends, Alex, Venus and Charlie Dollar all give the reader a glimpse of Hollywood life.

I like a Jackie Collins novel for the same reasons I like watching the various Housewives franchises – it’s so beyond my own experience. Dipping out of reality and into a bananas world of drama and intrigue can be exhilarating. These books are great for the beach or waiting rooms or any time you need a break. Collins herself never claimed to be a literary author, but she delivers a great story. Her books are fun and I adore them. Sure, the characters are a little contrived and the drama is completely over the top, but books like these have merit too.

Plus, she apparently loves leopard print, which is a neutral in my closet. I’ll give any woman a chance when I notice she rocks a great animal print.

Unfortunately, our author died last year after six years fighting cancer. So thanks, Jackie, for giving the world so many delightful, crazy books. I know I love them.

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