Romance - Contemporary
235 Pages
Reviewed on 03/03/2015
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Allen Wolf has won multiple awards for his storytelling as a feature film writer, director and producer. The screenplay upon which his first novel, Hooked, is based has won numerous accolades. His first feature film, In My Sleep, was released worldwide, won multiple film festivals and is available on Amazon and iTunes.

AllenWolfHe is also a multiple award-winning board game creator. Allen’s games – You’re Pulling My Leg!, Slap Wacky, JabberJot, You’re Pulling My Leg! Junior and Pet Detectives – have brought smiles to hundreds of thousands of people around the world and are available on Amazon.

Allen graduated from New York University’s film school where his senior thesis film, Harlem Grace, won multiple festival honors and was a finalist for the Student Academy Awards.

He married his Persian princess and they are raising their precocious daughter and newborn son. He enjoys traveling around the world and hearing other people’s life stories. Allen also cherishes spending time with his family, chocolate and visiting Disneyland.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Gisela Dixon for Readers' Favorite

Hooked by Allen Wolf is a contemporary romance novel with a twist. Set in New York City, Hooked is a heart-warming tale of love in the modern world. Shawn is a computer programmer, living in New York, who is looking for love. What makes him different from the thousands of other people looking for the same thing is that Shawn is autistic and lives with his grandmother, Ruth, who takes care of him, and thus he has a harder time meeting women who can understand him and not dismiss him as an oddity. Shawn meets Violet at a ‘Pimps and Hos’ costume party where he asks her out on a date, not realizing that she is a prostitute. At first, Violet doesn’t know what to make of Shawn, but soon realizes that underneath the odd, slow persona is a genuinely nice, honest, and kind man. What happens next as these two struggle with their reality forms the backdrop for this endearing love story.

Allen Wolf has done an outstanding job as a romance writer. Hooked is certainly not your average romance novel and what I especially liked about it is that it brings the deeper problems in our society to the fore and promotes open thought and discussion about them: topics such sex slavery, prostitution, the challenges that people with Autism or Asperger’s Syndrome face in their daily lives are important and need to be addressed in the world we live in today, among other things. I also loved both of the central characters in this book; they made this book seem realistic for me. All in all, this is a wonderfully well-written, funny, quirky, romantic love story that I would highly recommend to everyone.

Jack Magnus

Hooked is a contemporary romance written by Allen Wolf. Shawn is a high-functioning autistic man who works as a programmer for a singles dating site by day and seeks his romantic partner by night. He's got pictures of happy brides and grooms pinned up on his cubicle walls at work and has amassed a wealth of detail on marriage planning. He even has a marvelous place to take his dates, High Line Park, with its panoramic views of Manhattan's skyscrapers, but his dates don't seem to go very well. Shawn's autism makes his responses and observations somewhat different than most people's, and his candid comments tend to go over poorly. When he meets Violet at one of his boss's parties, she seems perfect. She's not taken aback by what he says or his repugnance at being touched, and she seems to like him.

Allen Wolf's contemporary romance, Hooked, had me smiling as I read it. Shawn's conversational gambits with his dates turn out to be unwitting classic zingers that never lead to second dates, or, for that matter, a whole first date. Violet, the aspiring actress who's been coerced into a life of prostitution, is the perfect, if at first glance unlikely, love who enjoys being with Shawn just as he is. This is a feel-good romance that addresses both autism and human trafficking, and it does so marvelously. Wolf's writing flows smoothly, his plot is awesome, and his characters are fully-dimensional beings. My only complaint would be that the story had an ending, as all stories do, and I did so want to keep reading on. Hooked is contemporary fiction that will make you think, shake your head and smile all at the same time. It's most highly recommended.

Jackie Timmons

Allen Wolf's Hooked is a cute story about a serious issue. Shawn is a high functioning autistic who is obsessed with the idea of finding love and getting married. He lives with his grandmother. She and his grandfather raised Shawn and his brother, Colin, after Shawn's autism proved too difficult for their parents to handle. Shawn works for an exclusive online dating site, building algorithms to help others find love. Although he goes on plenty of dates, Shawn rarely gets past the first date. In fact, most of his dates are cut short by Shawn's overly honest remarks. Then Shawn meets Violet. His innocent mind doesn't grasp the fact that she's a prostitute. Violet enjoys Shawn's honesty, sweetness, and the fact that he is the one guy who isn't trying to sleep with her. The two end up spending a lot of time together, much to the chagrin of Shawn's suspicious grandmother and brother.

Although Hooked is mostly about Shawn, the real issue that Allen Wolf comes down on is the human trafficking - Violet has become victim of this. At first, I wondered about Violet's motives and worried that she would end up hurting Shawn. But as I learned more and more about her past and how her pimp, Anton, got her to start down this path, I felt nothing but sympathy for her. I don't think this side of the story is told often enough and I congratulate Allen Wolf for choosing to highlight it and inform readers of the issue. That being said, the book is not preachy. It is a very enjoyable read with likable characters, beautiful descriptions, and plenty of humor. I highly recommend Hooked to anyone interested in a good story and a good cause.

Faridah Nassozi

In Hooked by Allen Wolf, Shawn had always been a social misfit. Because he was autistic, he was always awkward in social situations, making it very hard for him to get the attention of women. His first dates always ended very fast and he would never get a second date. Not even working for a dating site could improve his chances of finding love. Then one night, while at a company party, his boss dared him to score a date with one of the ladies. Shawn knew the moment he saw Violet that she was special; there was something about her that made him want to get to know her better. When the two agreed to a date, each had a completely different idea of what the date would entail, but somehow they sailed through it and they started growing closer. Shawn was sure he had found the woman he had been looking for but then his beautiful bubble was violently burst with the revelation of Violet's dark secret.

Hooked by Allen Wolf is a unique and inspirational love story that truly touched my heart. The story explores the problems that people with autism face in different social situations and the main character, Shawn, embodies this role to perfection. Shawn's feelings of being rejected by society, including his own parents, his co-workers and every woman he tried to date is heartbreaking because he is such a beautiful soul; better than many that would be considered normal by society. It was simply amazing seeing how Shawn, without even trying and by just being exactly who he was, managed to have such an impact on Violet's life and make her start to believe there is a life beyond her current circumstances. Hooked is sad and at the same time very beautiful, with an ending that is so fitting. The story almost makes you believe in the magic of 'love at first sight', 'happy endings' and 'love conquers all'.

Heather Osborne

Hooked by Allen Wolf is a contemporary novel about an autistic man struggling to find love and happiness. Shawn desperately wants to find someone to spend the rest of his life with but, due to his autism, finds it difficult to even get past the first date. His family is encouraging and protective of Shawn’s heart after he lost his first girlfriend in college. Then, at a party for his work, Shawn meets Violet. He mistakes her for an “ordinary” girl and asks her out on a date. Unbeknownst to him, Violet is actually a prostitute with a difficult past. Still, she takes a sort of pity on Shawn and agrees to meet with him, and their relationship grows. Shawn and Violet embark on a new kind of relationship, but can he accept her past and save her from a dangerous lifestyle?

Mr. Wolf’s novel is beautifully written. Rarely do I find myself so captivated by a book that I cannot put it down for nearly two hours. I read this book from start to finish in one sitting. Shawn was so sweet and Mr. Wolf really strove to write him as believably as possible. My heart went out to his gentle nature and simple desire to be loved. After all, isn’t that what we all want in life? Violet was a very sympathetic character and I found myself hoping more than anything for a happy ending for the pair. I was also very pleased to see this author donates a portion of the proceeds from his sales to a human trafficking charity. I love that the author raised awareness of local trafficking as it doesn’t just happen to women from other countries. All I can say is, pick up this book and get lost in the beauty of their relationship. Hooked is simply remarkable and was a complete pleasure to review.