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What is the worse romance you ever read?
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angelika



Joined: 05 Aug 2007
Posts: 182
Location: vancouver, bc, canada

PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:07 pm    Post subject: What is the worse romance you ever read? Reply with quote

I gave up on Catherine Coulter after reading “An Honorable Offer”, one of her earlier book. The “hero” demands that the heroine loves him and when she finally does and then walks in on him with his mistress, he beats her. What a jerk. Yeah, I know it was considered normal during that time period. I could not manage halfway through “The Devil’s Embrace”. Lousy writing, terrible plot and icky hero.
And then there is Jude Deveraux’s “Knight in Shining Armor” and only remember that it was boring. Some people don't like Katie MacAllister; I only read her historical novels and those I liked. They were easy nice beach readings. As for Lolah Burford’s “Alyx” and her other books, I have a hard time with her writing style. I know that folks are passionately divided about her books; I would like to make up my own mind but as I said, I find them extremely difficult to read. Maybe it’s because English is my second language.
Kinley MacGregor’s “The Warrior” simply had me baffled. I like “The MacAllisters” and “Brotherhood of the Sword” until “The Warrior”. I seems to me she is trying to hard to bring those together and for good measure throws in her “Dark Hunter” (as Sherrilyn Kenyon) concepts. Another book I haven’t read yet but I know from various forums that it causes people to voice their opinions strongly, is “Stormfire” by Christine Monson.
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NoirFemme



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1463
Location: America

PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lol, I gave up on Catherine Coulter only because she hasn't written any historicals with the broad humor of her 90s releases.

My vote for the worst romance I've ever read? The Saint by Madeline Hunter. Not because it was "bad," but because that particular story line is my pet peeve and I was angry throughout the entire book.
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Retrograde



Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 458

PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is my favourite topic. Very Happy Sad, but true. Being hard to please isn't a bad thing...I think.

Dark Protector Alexis Morgan
Night Life Elizabeth Guest
The Black Knight Connie Mason
The Pirate Prince Connie Mason
Playing With Fire and Catch A Mate Gena Showalter (another look at them made me realise how generous my initial C grades were) The Darkest Night was also disappointing, but it had it's moments that saved it from being a complete wall-banger.
The Pirate and the Pagan Virginia Henley
The Heir Johanna Lindsey
Simply Scandalous Tamara Lejeune
Enchanting The Lady Kathryne Kennedy

Most of my worst reads were unmemorable Mills & Boon romances or obscure romances delegated to the darkest corner of the library. I can remember a lot of plots, but few names. A particularly bad Western comes to mind, with a heroine who was the first judge in her state or something. And the hero was a Native American with a brother in jail for a crime he didn't commit - i'm sure you can imagine the conflict that ensued. Will she or won't she save his brother? Let me perch on the edge of my seat while I find out(!) I think the hero was a widower and blackmailed her into marriage so she could look after his baby and cook and clean for him. Man, oh man...that was an awful book. I wouldn't wish it upon my worst enemy.
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graceC



Joined: 28 Mar 2007
Posts: 466

PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The worst books I've read were 'Shana' by Woodiwiss, followed closely by Catherine Coulter's 'Rosehaven'. I stopped reading Coulter after that book and I never bothered giving Woodiwiss a second try after 'Shana'. I'm sure I've had my share of wall-bangers but those two were so bad I am still trying to erase the memory unsuccessfully to this day.
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willaful



Joined: 02 Jan 2008
Posts: 1529

PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2008 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Really bad writing usually makes me give up on a book and I don't tend to remember those but Her Only Desire by Gaelen Foley stands out in my memory for how astonishingly tedious it was.
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athena_d



Joined: 04 Jul 2007
Posts: 68

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 12:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

First and only book that comes to mind is Linda Howard's "All That Glitters".

Hm where do I begin? The hero is an ASS, he RAPES the heroine, and the heroine is a STUPID, WEAK, DUMB@$$ cry baby.

I apologize for my language or if I offend readers who love the book. I just cant seem to associate the book with anything other than these descriptive words.

THANK GOD it didnt turn me off Linda Howard or the romance genre in general. It was my second romance book =/


I'm sure there are more that I've thrown against the wall. I will post again when I remember more =]
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Schola



Joined: 10 Jun 2007
Posts: 1867

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

+IHS+

Like everyone else, I can think of several "worst" Romances, each one terrible for a different reason.

A Fine Passion by Stephanie Laurens

The most long-winded thing I've ever read!!! The book could easily be 150 to 200 pages shorter. Laurens just goes on and on and on and on and on in this one . . . If that weren't bad enough, the prose is awful: I believe a good expression is "All foam and no beer."

His Mistress by Morning by Elizabeth Boyle

The premise was promising: make a wish and it will come true, but your entire life will have been changed to make it so. (For instance, if you wish that you could be a skilled prima ballerina, then you will wake up with no childhood friends and siblings who are like strangers, because you practiced so much growing up that you didn't have time to get to know anyone.) It would have been okay, if the heroine hadn't been so breathtakingly TSTL: she spent half the novel stuttering in shock and the other half being spoiled and selfish.

Yet what really killed the novel for me was how they resolved all their problems in the end. Not to give anything away, but the phrase Deus ex machina comes to mind. Rolling Eyes

The Marriage Bed by Laura Lee Guhrke

Reading this was like playing Connect-the-Dots when I already knew what the "secret" shape was going to be. Early in the novel, a minor character tells the hero that he will know he has finally fallen in love when he makes a fool of himself in public for a woman . . . and for the rest of the novel I wait for him to do just that. Talk about killing tension! Evil or Very Mad
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Danielle D



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 513
Location: Wheaton, IL

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 5:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have two:

The Wanton
by Rosemary Rogers --- what was she thinking!?!??

Texas Wildflower by Susan Wiggs -- first book I ever finished and threw the book across the room and my hubby looked at me like what the hey? The storyline was wrapped up to fast and I wanted to read an epilogue -- I wanted to see a HEA.
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kspears



Joined: 11 Apr 2007
Posts: 375

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 7:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've mentioned this before: Bad on so many levels: Michelle Jaffe's The Stargazer: I hate you I hate you...let's have sex...I hate you I hate you...let's have sex...I hate you I hate you...let's have sex. Hard back, debut author, highly over-rated review from another place. I learned my lesson.
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Yulie



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1145
Location: Elsewhere

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are plenty of books with offensive storylines and/or heroes, but I feel compelled to pick one that has neither: Wicked Widow by Amanda Quick. In addition to being mind-numbingly boring, it also has dome secret society stuff going on that may have been part of the series (was it?), but really added nothing to the book, and was also annoying in the extreme. I haven't read her since, under any name.
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veasleyd1



Joined: 02 Dec 2007
Posts: 2064

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 8:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm inclined to second athena_d's nomination of Linda Howard's All That Glitters.

However, there's a new entry in the "worst romance" sweepstakes as of May 2008:

Notorious Rake, Innocent Lady (Harlequin Historical Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
by Bronwyn Scott (Author)

I stood in the B&N aisle far longer than my gimpy right knee should have stood there, helplessly mesmerized by the appalling prose of it.


Last edited by veasleyd1 on Mon Jun 02, 2008 10:53 am; edited 1 time in total
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xina



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 6635
Location: minneapolis

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 9:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If not the worst, this book is at least in the top 10. The title that springs to mnd is Midsummer's Magic by Catherine Coulter. Dumb title for a book with a complete ass of a *hero*. I got so sick of him taking out that little jar of cream for her during the sex scenes (not love scenes). All through the book I was screaming in my head....She doesn't like you, you dolt...get * a * clue!
Besides this one, there are others, but I can't remember titles or authors. One of them features a hero who keeps the heroine imprisoned for almost the entire book...and it's not romantic in the least. Another one that I can't remember either title or author features a hero who leaves the heroine after many years of marriage because she's not the young lovely thing he married. He goes off with a young mistress and keeps her for most of the book. In fact, when he goes on a ship to rescue his wife, the mistress...and the h/h son (who is a young boy) is there right along with him. Finally...the mistress is sent away on the last 2 pages. Complete garbage...complete waste of time.
Oh, and I'll second the Rosehaven mention...also by Coulter. The hero has his mistress living in the same building, the hero chains the heroine to the table to eat with the dogs..what a lovely man. yuck. The only difference between him and the other guys mentioned is that he's sort of a dolt and not mean but clueless as can be. An idiot.
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Elaine S



Joined: 02 Apr 2007
Posts: 666
Location: Rural England

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here are a few of my grade F-- books:

Untie My Heart by Judith Ivory
Once a Princess by Johanna Lindsey
The Marriage List by Dorothy McFalls
Any book by Diana Palmer

And, arguably NOT romance (they are more in the erotic spectrum):

Colters' Woman by Maya Banks (gag!!! pass the sick bag)

Equal Opportunities by Mathilde Madden - after reading comments on this by an AAR poster, I got a copy because I like a damaged hero. Instead I got myself a damaged ego for being so stupid as to even read past chapter 1. And no, I did not finish this piece of garbage. I tried hard to view it as esoteric comedy but in the end found it insulting and puerile beyond belief.


Last edited by Elaine S on Tue Jun 03, 2008 3:05 am; edited 1 time in total
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Lynda X



Joined: 05 Apr 2007
Posts: 1409

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I challenge ANYONE to come up with a worst book than this one. Unfortunately, I can't remember its name or author (maybe someone could supply it?), probably because our brain protects itself against such things. I DO remember, tho, that it was written in the '80s and by a known author.

Plot: Virginal young thing marries a man who callously and coldly has sex with her. He's enamored with his jaded mistress who does her best to make man hate wife. Both of them plot against her. I kept reading, waiting for the protagonist (can't call him a hero) to wake up to the evil manipulations of the evil mistress as she plotted evil acts. But he never did, EVEN WHEN MISTRESS POISONS the heroine and she dies! I looked for an epilogue, telling us the unending grief of the protagonist when he discovered the truth, but no, nothing. Stupid me, I even read it twice because I thought I had remembered it wrongly. It has been the only romance I have ever read that ends unhappily.
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Linda in sw va



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 4708

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All That Glitters by Linda Howard - the hero was the biggest jerk hero I've ever read and it still makes me mad when I think of him telling her she can't wear that wedding dress!

Everyday Average Jones by Suzanne Brockmann - I hated the heroine so much in this story that it turned me off to SB altogether.

Linda
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