Hot Water Reviews


Published in THE PEN WOMAN, June 2007

This first novel by Kathryn Jordan is gloriously poetic. It will melt the most jaded, cynical, and frozen heart. Hot Water is a gem of a story, a precious thing that can transform the ugly routine of our reality into a brilliantly faceted diamond sharing its glittering light.
A tired, invisible, empty-nest housewife in Minnesota, a lover of books in all their aspects and fantasy at its most imaginative, treats herself to a weekend getaway. With the collaboration of her sister, the housewife books her getaway at a luxurious, almost magical, health spa in the California desert. It's off the beaten track and very expensive. She leases a red Lamborghini (not that she's ever driven such a sports car) for her weekend. She also selects a male escort from the Internet - she is to be "Julia" and he is to be "William."

Hot Water can be reread every time the reader is in need of a dose of hope. The adventures and events here change both Julia and William, more than even the characters would have imagined! There is not a noticeable flaw in the book. The plot, characters, spectacular settings, metaphors, conclusion, and the philosophy all work. The reader closes the book and looks for traces of faery dust to brush off. This book really is that good.      

Reviewed by Zona Gale
National League of American Pen Women - Washington, DC


Getting Into Hot Water with Katheryn Jordan,
By Diana J. Ewing

As the organizer of The Orange County Writers Meetup Group, Russell Traughber knows that there's nothing like the story of one writer's long road to publication to entertain, enthrall and fire up other writers. Especially when that published writer is as talented and personable as Kathryn Jordan, who recently shared her experiences in the writing, publication and promotion of Hot Water with an enthusiastic Meetup crowd.

“Kathryn is the real deal,” said Russell, who not only moderates the Meetup Group's twice-a-month critique sessions and special events, but frequently emails members regarding resources for writers, including thoughts about his own writer's journey.

“If there is such a thing as paying your dues, Kathryn has done it,” he said. “That is why the evening was so special. We were able to celebrate with her and feel the joy she felt in being published by a royalty publisher.”

Read on... (for direct link click here, for pdf version, download here)

Posted at Two Lips Review
(click here for direct link)

Hot Water is a gloriously poetic novel that begins in the style of Contemporary Chick Lit but rapidly branches out into philosophy and metaphysics, and into allegory and metaphor. Hot Water truly has the capacity to melt the most jaded, cynical, ice-block heart. Hot Water is a glorious precious gem of a story, one which transforms ugly routine reality into a faceted diamond catching the light. No reader, male nor female, is going to resist this one; it fully deserves best-seller status.

A tired, invisible, empty-nest housewife from Minnesota and a lover of books in all their aspects and fantasy in its most imaginative, treats herself to a weekend away, alone. And why not? Her loving hubby, owner of a heavy-equipment fleet, has just recently purchased a half-million dollar hunting lodge in the upstate Minnesota woods; a fact which he has kept completely concealed. With the collaboration of her sister, Lucile, she books a weekend getaway at a luxurious, magical, health spa in the upper California desert, hidden away and very expensive, and she, who's never driven a sports car in her life, leases a red Lamborghini for the weekend. She plans this to the be the weekend to build memories to last her a lifetime, so she also selects a male escort on the Internet, and chooses to identify herself as Julia, and him as William.

William is at the end of three years in his field and wants desperately to enter graduate school to begin work on his Ph.D. He just needs a little more in his savings, just a few more jobs, and a weekend with Julia from Minnesota will pay for most of the remainder needed. Neither Julia nor William could possibly entertain the notion that the weekend getaway will change them both, and those close to them, in ways they could not have conceived of, even in fantasy.

Hot Wateris the kind of story one reads the first time for the sheer joy and pleasure of it; but it is also a novel that finds its way immediately to the keeper shelf. It will be reread over and over again, each time the reader is in need of a dose of Hope. There is not one factor at fault in this book. The plot, the characters, the gorgeous setting, the philosophy and metaphor: every aspect of this book shines, and the reader comes away looking at herself or himself for traces of faery dust glow. This book is that good.Kathryn Jordanis a debut novelist, but I hope this is only the first in a long line of outstanding stories from this gifted author.

Two Lips Reviews Recommended Read

Romance: B(u)y the Book - Old Flames

A disillusioned Midwestern housewife desperately needs respite from her aggressive husband and stifled existence. She indulges in a secret weekend at a spa in the California hills, where she engages the services of a handsome young male escort.

"William" sells his body to many women in unhappy marriages, but his new client encourages him to share more than just his sensual expertise. As she invites him to know intimacy in what should have been just another business transaction, William starts to remember what it was like to be a man who craved more from life than just limited subsistence.

"Hot Water" is a rare treat for body, mind, and soul -- a kind of literary vision quest, rich in spiritual imagery, romantic eroticism, and philosophical themes and dialogue.

Michelle Buonfiglio,
Romance Columnist, -

Here's what Romance Columnist, Michelle Buonfiglio, had to say in her June 28th blog:

While you're there, Bellas -- Oh, please do listen to me on this one -- check out this week's Old Flame, "Hot Water," by Kathryn Jordan.

If you buy one book this summer for the sheer pleasure of it, I recommend "Hot Water." It is unbelievable.

After she checked us out here last week, Kathryn wrote to tell me she was amazed. She'd never seen him before, but Eduardo Verastegui is William, the hero of the novel.

Michelle Buonfiglio,
Romance Columnist,

In praise of Hot Water

The January, 2006 issue of a German magazine, LoveLetter ( gave HOT WATER their highest possible rating, indicated by the heart symbol. Click here for original and translation

SouthernCalifornia- Present Day

Julia Reeves (not her real name) has decided she needs a break from her regular, unhappy life. She meticulously plans a weekend getaway in California, far, far from her home and marriage. Her marriage is a total disaster; she has been unhappy for years. The getaway is a ritzy, secluded and very private spa inCalifornia, and Julia has planned it so well, it even comes with a rented sports car and a rented man. A rented man? Yep, Julia has hired the services of a man, William (not his real name) who will fulfill her ultimate fantasies.

William is in for a surprise when he meets Julia. She is so... natural, quite unlike most of hisBeverly Hillsand Madison Avenue clients. William finds himself liking Julia and viewing the weekend as more than just a job. Julia soon begins to realize that her time at the spa is more than just a sexual fantasy come true. The happier she becomes, the more she realizes that she

may not be able to return to her previous, unhappy life. This time with William is filled with much more than satisfying sex. She and William connect in ways she has never felt before.

HOT WATER is an interesting tale of a middle-aged woman (is 46 middle-aged these days?) who is trying to find some happiness in her life now that her children are grown and gone from the family home. She is miserable in her marriage and with her life in general, and she is taking positive steps to reclaim her life. William is a definite bonus. He is much more than just an escort; he is a deep thinker and Julia feels a bond between them that extends far beyond a physical attraction.

HOT WATER is entertainment plus. The sensuous love scenes are just right; they are neither crass nor over the top. I enjoyed the dialogue between the two main protagonists more than any other part, because there are some interesting discussions about philosophy as well as the connection between spiritual enlightenment and physical and sexual discovery. The fact that Julia is married while engaging in this physical healing did not bother me, probably because Julia’s spouse is portrayed as a total cad. Hence, the decisions that Julia makes throughout this story appear justified.

HOT WATER should appeal to readers of several genres, and its depth makes it a surprisingly satisfying read.

Astrid Kinn
Romance Reviews Today

"Hot Water speaks to every woman's dream of reclaiming the sensual joys of life."

Susan Johnson, best selling author of erotic fiction

"Compelling, sensually provocative entertainment."

Lynn Isenberg, author of The Funeral Planner

“Sex in the desert. Julia takes respite from a midwestern town and an unhappy marriage for a date with a stranger in Palm Springs and discovers love. Fine writing. Erotic images.”

Les Rogers, author of Off To Alaska

“HOT WATER takes all our fantasies and wraps them in a delicious story about a woman who lives out hers in a desert paradise. Artfully written by Kathryn Jordan, this novel has taken sex to a new literary high.”

Sherry Halperin,
author of Rescue Me, He’s Wearing A Moose Hat, 40 Dates After 50, Avalon

“At an exotic desert spa resort 2000 miles from her empty life, Julia hires a male ‘escort.’ She enjoys the frolicking, sex-filled romp of her dreams but soon comes to know William as an intelligent, disillusioned young man who has given up on his own dreams. Kathryn Jordan skillfully keeps the fun going full tilt while allowing her characters quiet insights along the way. They rediscover joy, maybe even love, and together try to take back their lives and get out of HOT WATER.

Joanne Hardy, author of Boom and Misbegotten

“Lyrically sensuous, rhapsodic, an intellectual romp for mind and body. The thinking woman’s next step.”

Marcie Stillerman, author of Nine Spoons -
A Chanukah Story and Dixie Summer

“HOT WATER is a page turner that makes the reader long for a dip in the life expanding waters of its magic spa.”

Dr. Jack Stillerman, author of Yankee Doodle Boychik

“It’s like candy.”

Margaret Seeley, author of Know Me Again

Reader Reviews

Book Review For
Publication January, 2006

ANOTHER STORY…Books and Movies by Nancy Smith

After years of writing while holding down a full time teaching job, desert resident Kathryn Jordan has managed to do the near impossible: secure a major publishing deal for her debut novel, ‘Hot Water’.

I first met Kathryn before her book was published, and came away feeling she was smart, engaging and even brave. I hoped her novel would be, too.

The artwork on the cover of ‘Hot Water’ sets the tone for the story inside. It shows a couple locked in a passionate embrace, in water as deep and blue as a desert sky. The book is billed as a fantasy and a love story, and at first I admit I struggled with this. It felt a little too much like a ‘romance’ novel for my taste. As I turned the pages I kept changing my mind about the book, and soon I was caught up in the story. Kathryn is a fine writer, and her well crafted work is as seductive as the cover photograph.

‘Hot Water’ is sensual and character driven. Place is important to the story, and you will easily recognize real locations featured in the book such as Two Bunch Palms Spa, Joshua Tree Park, the Cabot’s Old Indian Museum and Thousand Palms Oasis.

When I asked Kathryn to describe her novel, she smiled and said it is "a story about a Midwestern housewife who escapes her stifling life, comes out to an exotic spa resort in the California desert, rents a red Lamborghini, hires a male escort, and changes her life forever."

Kathryn says she’s proud of ‘Hot Water’ and believes: "It is more than a simple love story. It is about a woman breaking rules and getting away with it. We admire these women, but usually expect them to pay dearly, like Marilyn Monroe or Thelma and Louise…"

‘Hot Water’ is Kathryn’s fourth novel but her first to be published. For years she would get up at 3:00 or 4:00 am to write, and then teach all day. "I knew I had to sell something because I couldn’t go on forever like that." She says that despite several rejections: "I didn’t give up. I had to write. I had a vision that it could happen. I retired from teaching to be a full time writer".

After publishers rejected a previous novel as too literary, Kathryn did what she had to do: "I decided to write a book so sexy and fun and short that nobody would turn it down, and it sold in three weeks." Kathryn says ‘Hot Water’ is wrapped in a form of disguise to sell: "It is a sexy, fun, woman’s fantasy, but I didn’t compromise the deeper levels I wanted to get in there".

When Kathryn heard her book was going to be published she says: "I was numb, elated. I still have the voicemail".

In addition to the traditional bookstore distribution, Kathryn decided to market the book to spas and at house parties, and the response has been amazing. She says "there’s a sense that ‘Hot Water’ could be big. The publisher ran out of galleys and had to make up bound manuscripts for all the requests. There’s some talk of a film based on the story, and the launch party will be held at Two Bunch Palms January 18th."

‘Hot Water’ is available in bookstores and at select spas January 3rd. Buy a copy, support a local writer, and enjoy a well written book.

I enjoyed reading Hot Water by Kathryn Jordan tremendously. I thought it was the most perfect combination of sensuality and intelligence. The erotica is wonderful; it is refined and sophisticated as are the characters. The ending is a wonderful surprise and I think the author takes us on a whirlwind of emotional challenges, with a true understanding of the female psyche and the complications that brings in terms of finding freedom. Freedom for both characters is ultimately what this book meant to me. It is a fascinating, delicious, intelligent read, and the author is definitely one of the best in sharing her characters’ sensuality without becoming salacious in any way. Quite a feat!

A Reader Review
Johanna Angelos
La Quinta, California

I read HOT WATER while visiting my family in VA over Christmas and was mesmerized. My husband and I stayed in a hotel that week (1st time EVER while visiting my family---new boundaries) so I immersed myself in HOT WATER, literally and figuratively. Every night, I would fill the big Jacuzzi tub all the way to the top and read about Julia. I could barely stand the sensual bliss and excitement. Derek could tell something was up---I think he’s going to read it now!

Morgaine Beck
Retreat Coach, Falmouth, MA

Just wanted to send a quick note to tell you how much I enjoyed HOT WATER. It was so much fun I stayed up late and finished it in one evening.

I hope your publisher is making sure bookstores put this on the regular fiction shelves as well as the romance shelves, as this is deep and complex and quirky enough to appeal to a much wider crowd than genre readers. Thanks again for giving me the chance to preview something new and interesting, and broaden my horizons!

Oh, just so you know, my best friend who is 45 and into cars, Latin guys and lakeside living, thinks this is about the best book ever written.

Cindi Hogarth
Austin, TX

I just received my copy of HOT WATER today. I read from eight o'clock last night until now. (2:39 A.M.) I could not put it down.

It is wonderful! I have been reading romance novels of some sort since high school, so with some knowledge I can tell you that you definitely, Got IT! I am sure it will be a huge success and there are many more books for you to write. In fact, your fans will demand it.

Tomorrow I am going out to purchase more HOT WATER and sending a copy to each of my reader friends and film making friends. I wish you the very best in your success. Enjoy every hour! You are a fantastic writer.

Susan Crosby
Palm Desert, CA

I enjoyed reading Hot Water by Kathryn Jordan tremendously. I thought it was the most perfect combination of sensuality and intelligence. The erotica is wonderful; it is refined and sophisticated as are the characters. The ending is a wonderful surprise, and the author takes us on a whirlwind of emotional challenges, with a true understanding of the female psyche and the complications that brings in terms of finding freedom.

Freedom for both characters is ultimately what this book meant to me. It is a fascinating, delicious, intelligent read, and the author is definitely one of the best in sharing her characters’ sensuality without becoming salacious in any way. Quite a feat!

Johanna Angelos
La Quinta, California

© 2005 - 2013, Kathryn Jordan