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What is the worse romance you ever read?
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Skrabs



Joined: 16 Apr 2008
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Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2009 10:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, sweet memories. I now have the desire to unearth my Buffy collection and start watching. Sigh. Too many books TBR, a whole series of Buffy... How am I going to fit life in ? Laughing

I loved Buffy. My friends and I used to all gather around at my place every Tues night to watch. But I also love Twilight. I think that Buffy and Bella had a different kind of strength and I admired both of their ways for dealing with it. As I recall Edward was frequently having to pull Bella out of trouble for choices which she was absolutely determined to make, regardless of what he thought. I never thought she bordered on TSTL but I found her to be just an ordinary girl who made some wrong choices, some good and ultimately it balanced out. Most of the time she got into trouble it was to protect somebody that she loved and I think that compassion was just one of her many strengths.

As someone mentioned earlier, if that was my teenaged daughter and there was avampire coming through her window at night to watch her sleep I'd wig out... But then I started thinking, I wonder what Buffy's mum would have thought about it when Angel was on the scene? I'm pretty sure I remember late night visits regarding him too, hmm? (I might be wrong. That was a while ago). Is there a difference in that Buffy could hand Angel his balls and Bella physically couldn't? Funnily enough this actually creeped me out a bit - in the movie - and not in the book, the first time I watched it. I kept thinking it was a bit... intense. Now I love the movie (after repeated watchings) but I do remember thinking hmmm.
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Retrograde



Joined: 23 Feb 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 6:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, Angel (and Angelus!) made a few late-night visits. Wink

People that are bothered by the 100-year age gap between Edward and Bella--what do you make of the 250-year age gap between Buffy and Angel? Laughing Buffy was 16 at the time, and 17 when they had sex. I don't remember many people thinking it was creepy back then.
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Linda in sw va



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 11:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

xina wrote:
[Linda, I haven't gotten to the kiss yet, but I think this is a perfect example of a book with a romance that doesn't need sex to define the relationship. Yes...it can be done. I think the author conveys the relationship in a very sweet way. I find it very romantic.


Xina, I hope you can cave out some time to finish it soon, I can't wait to hear your thoughts once you've read Twilight in it's entirety!

Linda
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xina



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Linda in sw va wrote:
xina wrote:
[Linda, I haven't gotten to the kiss yet, but I think this is a perfect example of a book with a romance that doesn't need sex to define the relationship. Yes...it can be done. I think the author conveys the relationship in a very sweet way. I find it very romantic.


Xina, I hope you can cave out some time to finish it soon, I can't wait to hear your thoughts once you've read Twilight in it's entirety!

Linda



I will Linda! I'm tempted to start another TWILIGHT thread though...seems like we've invaded the 'worst book' thread. I'll do that when I finish. Really enjoying it though. I'll probably finish tonight.
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Kathryn Kane



Joined: 28 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Back to the worst book thread Wink

I would second an earlier post that considered anything written by Christina Dodd to be awful. I have read three of her books, and in each case the so-called hero was an arrogant pig, in at least one case, a rapist. Her so-called heroines were spineless jellyfish. I understand most of her work is like that, so never again for me. YUCK!!!

I have also read a couple of Catherine Coulter's historicals, and I found her work even worse than Dodd's. There was no romance at all, only arrogant controlling men who forced themselves on spineless females who ultimately accepted this abuse. She seems to hate women. I have never read any of her contemporary novels and was wondering if she abused her heroines as egregiously in those?
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ChocoManiac



Joined: 24 Jan 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 12:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Worse book for me:

Whinny, I mean Whitney, my love and generally most of Judith McNaught books (though I did sort of like Once and Always but mostly because it was the first McNaught I ever read). I know lots of people love McNaught, I just don't.

For me her books read as if she didn't make any choices, she just stuffs everything she can think of in a book. And they sort of seem to repeat themselves:

Over jealous guy, slightly spineless heroine. Over jealous guy has a hissy fit heroine suffers, hero apologies (sort of), they make up, rinse and repeat.

(yes, I'm aware its sort of the same with Once and Always, but, like I said, fist book I read of hers.)
---

Same goes to Potent Pleasures by Eloisa James (I kind of didn't like any of that trilogy), Jealous guy, spineless heroine, big hissy fits.
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Susan/DC



Joined: 26 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kathryn Kane wrote:
Back to the worst book thread Wink

I would second an earlier post that considered anything written by Christina Dodd to be awful. I have read three of her books, and in each case the so-called hero was an arrogant pig, in at least one case, a rapist. Her so-called heroines were spineless jellyfish. I understand most of her work is like that, so never again for me. YUCK!!!


I liked Dodd's One Scandalous Evening (I think that's the title) because the heroine actually had a spine and there was a certain humorous thread that ran through the book. It starts when the heroine, a sculptor, make a statue of the hero, but because she's never seen a naked man she presents him as somewhat underendowed. He, not surprisingly, takes offense, but in the way of all good romances it works out in the end.

I eventually stopped reading her, however, because none of the other books were quite as satisfying. The heroines tended to resist the heroes until suddenly they did not, and there never appeared to be a reason I could discern as to why they changed their minds. As for her recent paranormal series, I liked the covers, but the epilogue at the end of the series where every single female character was pregnant at the same time was too much even for child-loving me.
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Kathryn Kane



Joined: 28 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Susan/DC wrote:

I liked Dodd's One Scandalous Evening (I think that's the title) because the heroine actually had a spine and there was a certain humorous thread that ran through the book. It starts when the heroine, a sculptor, make a statue of the hero, but because she's never seen a naked man she presents him as somewhat underendowed. He, not surprisingly, takes offense, but in the way of all good romances it works out in the end.


All right! Wink You have piqued my interest.

This title appears to be out-of-print, but it is available very inexpensively at Biblio http://www.biblio.com/ so I will give her one more chance. Thanks for the tip!
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safirex9786



Joined: 19 Aug 2011
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lynda X wrote:
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.


I think this book is The Heiress by Evelyn Anthony. Awful "romance."
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ChrisReader



Joined: 05 Sep 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

safirex9786 said
Quote:
Lynda X wrote:
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.


I think this book is The Heiress by Evelyn Anthony. Awful "romance."


That reminds me quite a bit of an old Phillippa Carr book I read as part of a series. Each book was about the daughter of the woman of the previous book and it basically covered the history of England from Henry VIII's time until the 20th century. This particular book is "The Witch From The Sea." It's set in 16th century England and the poor heroine is pretty much raped or "compromised" by the "hero" at an inn (he sees her with her mother and stalks them) she doesn't tell her father as she is afraid the hero will hurt or kill him if he challenges him. She marries this great guy, has a daughter etc etc. One day this beautiful mysterious woman is rescued from a shipwreck on the coast by their home (I think the husband is helping to wreck ships to get the cargo). The woman becomes the husband's mistress. That part of the book ends and the next part takes up with the daughter as the mother is dead- the mistress supposedly killed her. Then the daughter goes on to have her life (better than the Mom's happily.) It wasn't the worst book I have read but it was certainly unusual. Phillipa Carr wasn't afraid to make her heroines suffer and not all get happy endings!
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JamiSings



Joined: 28 Dec 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 10:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, I can't actually remember the name of the book - and with my luck it's probably one I've asked about here, got the name of, and promptly forgot it. I do remember it had "Fire" or "Flame" in the title. The cover was primarily white with a redheaded woman on a horse. It takes place in Russia during the winter. I think it might've been Russia during the renaissance period as well. Or earlier.

Anyway, while I can't remember the title, I do remember the heroine was a daughter of some Russian lord. She's out riding, wearing less than noble clothing, and I think was actually taking a rest on a blanket (in the snow!) when the hero stumbles across her. Thinking she's just a peasant he rapes her. Then he makes his way to her father's home where he's about to go to work as some major knight or solider - something to do with fighting and defending this guy's home and daughter - that the hero just raped - while the lord is away (I think). When he finds out that he raped a nobleman's daughter he spends the rest of the book trying to convince her to marry him since he ruined her and all.

All I can think the entire time I was reading this trainwreck was "Okay, so it's okay for a guy to rape a peasant girl and take her virginity, but because she's a nobleman's daughter now you have to marry her? And why are you falling for this s**t, girl? You should be cutting his penis off with a dull, rusty knife! Not falling in love with him!"

I read it in high school so it was the 90s I read it, but probably published in the 80s. I know 99% of the romances I read at that time had the "punishing kisses" that guys would bestow just to shut a woman up, only to find out they liked kissing her. Though while there would be "forced seduction" - she would usually give some sort of consent. But this was straight out and out rape. He sees her, thinks she's just a nobody, flips her skirts up, rapes her, maybe throws her a blanket, and rides off. And if I remember correctly he does this in front of one of his friends. Surprised now that he didn't "share" her with his buddy.

It's one of the worse romances I ever read.

As for Buffy - never cared for her. When I think strong heroine, I think someone more like Alexa Tarrabotti from The Parasol Protectorate series. She kicks butt, still manages to act like a lady, and isn't afraid to go to friends/a support group for help. That's a real strong woman. Not Buffy or her knock offs which are basically nothing more then your stereotypical action hero man without a penis.
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Pan's Wife



Joined: 01 Jul 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm going with Jude Deveraux’s “Knight in Shining Armor” because I consider it the worst I ever actually finished. There were certainly others, probably much worse, but as DNFs I'm not going to count them. The other reason for this book is that it is by a respected author and others love it while I just don't get what they see in it.
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Eliza



Joined: 21 Aug 2011
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

xina wrote:
Lee wrote:
Me, I just love the lovely portrayal of a loving marriage with a hunky Renaissance-man Highlander and his compasssionate and resourceful medical wife. Yeah, I enjoyed the description of the Highlands, but if I was looking for a treatise on Scots history or geography, I would pick up another book.



Yes, these are the reasons I loved it too. I don't apologize for loving this series, nor will I frantically defend it , but it worked for me, in a big way. Outlander was my first book bought from the romance aisle, and I was blown away by it. I'm not a stickler for historical accuracy, but I think the writing, in itself is wonderful. It is my own personal favorite, by a long shot.


The comments above express my thoughts really well. Funny but Outlander was my first romance too and is still my all time favorite. I also love the way the author writes and I enjoy all the details she adds. I'm a big history buff, but I don't expect to learn history from fiction, and since historians themselves don't always agree with one another, I just take the liberties or mistakes I find in fiction for what they are.

This is a really interesting thread. Like several others, I found Whitney, My Love unbearable, and I didn't care much for Shadowheart or Charm School either. I've never been tempted to read either Coulter or Palmer, so now after this thread it's even more unlikely I ever will.

For something new, a lot of people on various boards seemed to have liked Born in Sin and Ain't She Sweet, but not me. Those books turned me off so much I read nothing further by those authors. Just goes to show how tastes are different. Good thing there are so many authors to choose from.
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Yulie



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JamiSings wrote:
As for Buffy - never cared for her. When I think strong heroine, I think someone more like Alexa Tarrabotti from The Parasol Protectorate series. She kicks butt, still manages to act like a lady, and isn't afraid to go to friends/a support group for help. That's a real strong woman. Not Buffy or her knock offs which are basically nothing more then your stereotypical action hero man without a penis.

Jami, how much of Buffy did you watch? Because while there are criticisms of the show that I can understand, I'm baffled how anyone can view her as typical action hero who's afraid to ask anyone for help. The whole point of Buffy is that she's not typical: she's petite, she's young, she's someone who at least superficially you would not expect to be strong, physically or mentally. In addition, much of her strength does come from her friends and family - Giles, the Scoobies, Dawn, Spike in later seasons - who play a large role in keeping Sunnydale (and the world) safe. The importance of this support group is especially clear in season 3, when we see two takes on what life would be like for a friendless Buffy: one being Faith, the slayer who really is a loner; and the other being the parallel universe Buffy who never came to Sunnydale (apparently, there's a lot of demonic activity in Cleveland Wink). Faith is a mess, while the other Buffy dies pretty quickly, because she doesn't really have anyone she can trust and rely on - this is taken to an extreme with her two closest real world friends being vampires in the alternate reality. Buffy, when she's estranged from her friends, is far less effective, something that is very clear throughout the series.

Also, I loved Spike, who may be love's bitch but is man enough to admit it. I just wanted to add that. Very Happy

Well, that's very OT. When I first wrote on this thread a loooong time ago, I picked an Amanda Quick book because I felt the "honor" should go to a book I found poorly written rather than downright offensive. Continuing with that approach, the worst book I've read since then is Anne Stuart's Ruthless. If she was going for camp, it didn't work. If I was meant to take it seriously, it was just a spectacular failure. I don't think I'll be reading anything by her again; it was that bad.
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JamiSings



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I only saw a couple of the latter episodes, admittedly, but she was too tough. Only Buffy I like is the whiny cheerleader from the comedy movie version.
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