Sunday, May 08, 2005

A Blast From The Past – Reading Faux Pas

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!! Pardon me whilst I stop rolling about on the floor, after reading Meljean Brook’s most recent blog, where she revisits old Harlequin books that once upon a time she cherished and adored.

I know that a lot of us often find ourselves re-reading books that we once loved in the hopes of re-igniting our passion for romance. This seems to be happening to me more often than not. I find myself liberally mixing up my genre’s at the moment in the hope that romance and I will become firm friends once more.

There are many books that I can read over and over again, and still find them as fabulous as the first time I read them, but then there are others which I read and like Meljean, can’t understand what the hell I was smoking at the time.

One of my favourite Harlequin Silhouette Desire reads of all time is a book called Just Joe, by Marley Morgan.
Every time I read a book like JW Mckenna’s Darkest Hour, and find myself despairing that I’ll ever read a decent book again, I run straight into the arms of this 1987 publication for tea, sympathy, and comfort.

Just Joe still has the power to move me to tears no matter how often I read it, and I believe that this is the mark of a truly good book, (I probably need to step in here and add that this is my opinion, and not necessarily the opinion of others). Joe, who was the hero, was just the most amazing man, and he probably made the book for me. I can’t be arsed telling you what it was about so if you want to look it up, go to Amazon.

However, not so long ago, I went back to a Mills and Boon offering (I wont name and shame this author as some of her books are amongst my fave reads now) that I used to absolutely love, and Oh. My. God. What the fuck was I thinking! Not only was the heroine the kinda gal that you’d cheerfully strangle for being such a weak-assed dick, the hero was the epitome of all the things I hate in a badly-written alpha male.

He was arrogant beyond the pale, and treated the heroine like shit (she deserved it for being so damn stupid, but that doesn’t excuse the author for writing characters that most readers would hate with a passion) whilst accusing her of sleeping with every Tom, Dick and Harriet, she took a fancy to.

I mean come on, can a girl who does voluntary work at a shelter for children (she probably sounds likeable, but believe me, she wasn’t) a girl, who shook in her boots every time the hero gave her a “thin-lipped disparaging smile” and “blushed wildly” whenever his royal masculine thighness/bearer of “an aura of raw sexuality” got to within a few feet away from her, be the kinda chick that opens up her legs to all and sundry? Yeah right. Yet funnily enough, the hero seemed to miss all these nuances, and ridiculously came to the conclusion that she was hiding something, most probably a secret lover, as if! Yech!

Having said all of the above, I remember reading this book as a young teen and absolutely loving it, it may have been the “smoldering looks” that the hero kept throwing the heroine at every given opportunity, or the way the girly against her better judgement couldn’t control her baser instincts, and let Alpha Dickless continually “imprison her body against his” whilst she “moaned in ecstasy”.

Do ya get what I’m saying yet? The book muchos sucked, and I’ve hitherto come to the conclusion that all my taste was in my mouth as a teen!

I know you must have read books like this in the past, care to share?