Women have autism. The medical community often seems unaware of this fact. Valerie Paradiz says in her excellent article about females with autism, “reports published this year have uncovered a long-standing male bias in research and in diagnostic methods of autism that has gravely influenced the detection and understanding of girls and women.”
But at least we have Helen Hoang’s The Kiss Quotient. This warm-hearted and often laugh out loud romance introduces Stella Lane, a thirty-year old woman who works at an Amazon-esque company as some sort of math genius. Honestly, I have no idea what she does but it is mathy-sciency and I always like that in a heroine. Wait a minute, here’s the word describing what she does, econometrician. Thank you, NPR! She also has autism. Stella is sweet and thoughtful and loves her parents. She loves her job. She worries about the fact that the people she’s romantically attracted to don’t like her. She says the wrong thing at the wrong time. A lot.
Stella Lane is all of us. And the man she meets and falls in love with is a dreamboat of the highest order. Here is an image of the man the author based the appearance of this character on. His name is Daniel Henney. I’m going to embed it in the post just in case you refuse to do yourself a favor and follow the link. Hang on.
The Kiss Quotient hits a lot of its marks without being formulaic. The heroine embodies traits that normal human beings have. The hero looks like a gorgeous film star, works as an escort and adores his mother. There are some seriously steamy scenes, high drama and fleshed out secondary characters.
If there had been a dog it would have been perfect.
For more about females and autism, here is an excellent place to start: What Women with Autism Want You to Know.