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The One Single Worst Romance Novel Plot You've Ever Read, Ever. Quick Recap In 2 Minutes Or Less.


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Initial post: Jun 16, 2011 1:11:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 16, 2011 1:17:58 PM PDT
Magelet says:
I'm considering this a public service, heh, and I would apologise to the people who actually enjoyed this book, but I would have to first close my gaping jaw that there are any. Warning for spoilers in case anyone thinks this plot sounds intriguing. You know, as opposed to appalling.

The Title: Jessie Gray
The Author: Emma Blair (and I have to say that as far as I remember, Emma Blair is a decent writer technically speaking. Unfortunately. I would have preferred not to be drawn into the writing of this particular plot.)

The Plot: Right. *knuckle crack* Small town...England? Ireland? Scotland? Wales? Somewhere in the UK, 1950s. (ETA: It's Scotland. Thanks, Amazon.) Heroine is young daughter of extremely overprotective, repressed and stern minister father. Meets Hero when both are children. As young teenagers, Heroine finds out that Hero is sexing up his first girlfriend. "I'm the only virgin in town. Woe." Latches onto first boyfriend, who is sooooooo far in the closet that she has to haul him back from Narnia. Tries to sleep with him. She isn't a teenage boy, so First Boyfriend struggles to...raise the interest. Until she tries rambling off a whole lot of words to get him in the mood (because pulling out Webster's English Dictionary during intimate moments is just like reading porn aloud). Mentions "Eton" ("Ooh, plummy schoolboys in fancy coats") and suddenly he's raring to go. Poor first sexual experience = insta pregnancy. First Boyfriend's family denies all and labels her Town Bike, oh noes. Hero sticks up for her. Either abortion or miscarriage ensues. They bond over experience and get together. It's True Love. Apparently. Heroine starts forcing everybody to call her "Star", because she's a bit of a twit. Hero becomes leader of gang. They marry and are like Mod King and Queen of these teddy boy bikers. Rival group kidnap Heroine and violently and graphically gang rape her (not such a warm and fuzzy story now, is it?). Hero...kind of doesn't really care. "Oh, poor you... Now what do you think about me starting a band? Cool, right?" Things start going rapidly downhill at this point. Hero starts band, Heroine is supportive even though the struggling musicians Just Can't Catch A Break, Hero finally meets Evil Femme Fatale Music Producer, but OH NO, if Hero doesn't become her sex slave at least four times a week, she'll ruin his career and he'll never work in this town again, ever. The correct Romance Novel response to this kind of behaviour is: "Excuse me, Other Woman, are you my Heroine? I think not. The best I can do is help you get something out of your eye or grab you in the chest region to hold off your advances and wait for my Heroine to burst in on us, thus creating the Big Misunderstanding and ensuring that I get hot makeup sex in a couple of chapters. K?" Instead, "Hero" is all, "Hmm...haw...well...okay." Heroine walks in on them having sex for about the third or fourth time, runs out and doesn't see him for like a decade. During which time, she gets a job in a pub, discovers the sweet taste of beer, puts on about seventy pounds, picks up a boyfriend who think she's fat and treats her like crap, and stands around aging bitterly. Meets the Hero again by chance, totally takes him back ("NOOOO! And there isn't even a grovel!!!"), is all "But I'm fat," and he's all, magnanimously, "That's okay, you still have a nice face and I did sleep with someone else." The end, happy ever after. (Until the Hero decides to switch careers and go on the stage, and the heroine discovers him on the casting couch, I assume.)

Yeah. Don't read it. :-) It obviously still haunts me to this day, ha. I took great pleasure in literally throwing this one in an industrial paper recycler.

Posted on Jun 16, 2011 1:42:37 PM PDT
lwd says:
Knaves' Wager, Loretta Chase. 'Hero' goes after the heroine who had the most flawless reputation for a wager to keep a courtesan away from his foolish relative who wants to marry the gold digger. No matter that he fell in love with his victim, his first reason for going after the heroine stayed a permanent black mark as far as I was concerned.

I kept reading the book to the end hoping the heroine would give him his comeuppance, but never happened. She forgave him, they (naturally) fell desperately in love, HEA for everyone but the reader (this reader in any event).

Posted on Jun 19, 2011 5:27:54 PM PDT
Redwithabook says:
Devils embrace Catherine coulter
Heroine loves other guy since forever they decide to get married heroine goes out on small boat becuase she feels like it boat gets destroyed by crazy dude who wants to marry her so when's he's about to rape her she says I'm prego already with my fiancées baby hero looks at her says okay I'll raise it as my own finds out she was faking it and tells her she a liar because he can tell she still a virgin and the happily rapes her! later "hero" tells her he was in love with her mom and that since her moms been dead hes wanted her for his wife and has basically wanted her since she was a little kid. Later on jealous lover has her gang raped and hero gets angry because she doesnt want to have sex! She runs away because she finds out his cousin has been her governess her whole life and he set it up. gets to her fiancee has sex with him and realizes they won't work out hero comes for her and they get back together! Isnt that a lovely romance novel?

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 9:18:34 AM PDT
Tanner's Scheme - Lora Leigh

"H" was assigned to play peeping tom on heroine. Heroine is a spy. Her dad has found out and sent her ex to take her out. "H" has decided to take her out too. They all converge in a motel room. Battle ensues. Ex is killed, h is rendered unconscious, and "H" drags her off by her hair to his cave (literally - he hid her in a cave). They spend the next few days? Weeks? Months? sexing it up and him finding out just how much of a bastage dear old daddy really was (while trying to find out which side she was on by intense questioning). She finally gets to come out of the cave after "H"'s twin visits and it's discovered breed heat has been triggered. There's a bit about a party near the end, a kidnapping/assassination attempt, and the book is over, having spent almost its entirety in a bed located in a cave with electricity. Uh Huh.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 9:50:08 AM PDT
JerseyGirl says:
Redwithabook, Devil's Embrace immediately came to mind when I saw the thread title. You beat me to it! Horrid book!

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 9:51:43 AM PDT
E. Burns says:
I'm remembering why I no longer read Coulter or Leigh.

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 10:20:53 AM PDT
Caress and Conquer by Connie Mason. Worst book I have ever read!
H rapes h in the beginning (mistakes her for prostitute *rolls eyes*) as result of that h becomes a slave. H not realizing h is the girl he slept with purchases as slave. Right away H forces h to sleep with him (she becomes preggers), few weeks later they are sleeping together and in love. H has to leave for a dumb reason & doesnt know h is preggers, while away Mistress pushes h down stairs and beats her, h gives birth to preemie baby. H comes home to h he suppose to love and finds she has a baby, H does the math and figures the baby isnt his, doesnt believe her that baby is a preemie. H brings mistress home and sleeps with her so h can hear them while she is in the other room with baby. H & mistress are mean to h, they deside to put baby and h in the hot gross attic. H continues to rap h, but then falls in love with her again. Mistress is mad so gives h to indians where she is rapped. H realizes mistress is evil so gets rid of her finally and marries h. Mistress comes back and blackmails H into sleeping with her. H cheats on his wife. The worst part of the whole book is thru out the whole book the H friend is in love with h and is the one that continues to save her from the mistress, the indians and abuse. He was willing to claim the baby that the H wouldnt and wanted to marry her. Ohhhh but the h didnt go with him cause she was in love with the H, even tho he NOT a hero. He rapped her, hit her, cheated, made her listen to him having sex with someone else, didnt claim his own baby, ect. Just a horrible book. And the only good person in the book (the H friend) didnt end up with anyone or anything, you dont know what happens to him.
O.k I am done ranting about this bad book.

~Grace

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 10:31:42 AM PDT
devil's pact...and two words...The Cannon...

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 10:35:34 AM PDT
This is really good for my mental "never shall I ever...touch these books in a million years" list. Thanks, all.

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 10:40:07 AM PDT
J. Turner says:
I read one of those sheikh plus baby romances, can't think of the author. Anyway, the h uis an interior designer and she is upset because a house she wanted to work on has been nought by someone else. (yeh, the sheikh!) He goes to her house, can't remember why, she doesn't realise he is a wealthy sheikh ( making her TSTL) They are at it like bunnies after five minutes. He leaves, nine months later, she hears crying (the stork, crying with laughter no doubt!) Strangely, a year or so later she just happens to be working in his 'sheikhdom' and the H realises that a) she has a baby(!) and b) he's the daddy... argh! Naturally they declare undying love and live HEA. Groan.

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 11:05:06 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 20, 2011 11:06:02 AM PDT
ICA says:
Ice by Linda Howard. When I read a romance I expect a feel good read. This book just gave me the creeps. The h is held hostage in her house during an ice storm by two drug addicts. The H goes to her house to make sure she's okay on the mountain by herself during the storm. He helps her escape but the druggies see them and pursue. One of the villians refused to die no matter what horrible things happened to her and the book just gave me the creeps. There was no romance to speak of in this book.

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 12:19:23 PM PDT
Karlyn says:
Gambler's Woman by Jayne Ann Krentz

This is an older contemporary version of a bad bodice ripper with a mean and abusive hero who forces himself onto a naive business woman in Las Vegas. She has the word 'door mat' stamped on her back. This is the kind of story where in real life you would call the cops and get a restraining order. It was soooooo frustrating and awful that I never read another book by this author despite assurances that she really has improved.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 1:50:22 PM PDT
Oh come on, Deanna - I am only a few pages into Devil's Pact but I know if you read it as a comedy, it'll play out pretty well! Personally, I have only had one intro the The Cannon (by the lake at the beginning) but so far, so fun! ;)

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 2:44:26 PM PDT
TravelingGal says:
How can you not love The Cannon? :D

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 2:54:07 PM PDT
Oh no! Jayne Ann Krentz wrote a big dud? I haven't read that one, but KarLyn, don't give up on this author. Have you read any of Amanda Quick's historicals? They are soooooo great. (AQ is also JAK). I personally like her historicals better than her paranormals/romantic suspense. Try Ravished and With This Ring. Both are great historicals!

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 4:48:04 PM PDT
sure, if its supposed to be a spoof on how to write a romance novel then it definately succeeded...lol! and she wrote two more...

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 7:39:35 PM PDT
T214T1987 says:
Magelet....that has got to be one of the worst books....I will never read this book. Thanks for the info.

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 7:59:36 PM PDT
I have only read Amanda Quick book so far and the was Desire. I really wasnt impressed so I am not sure if I am going to pick up any more of her books for awhile.

~Grace

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 9:07:22 PM PDT
Redwithabook says:
Wasn't it! It was awful! I rolled my eyes at some parts and was just disgusted at others!

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2011 11:03:33 PM PDT
MaryE says:
Grace,
JAK/Amanda Quick wrote a bunch of one-word titles back in the 90s, but Desire was the only one with a medieval setting. The rest are generally regency time frame and a lot more entertaining. You might want to try another before writing them off completely - Desire isn't the best example of the good Quick books.

I agree with N.R. Borromeo, Ravished is just great.

Posted on Jun 20, 2011 11:28:07 PM PDT
The Black Knight by Connie Mason

Heroine is a child in love with Hero. Hero is in love with Heroine's sister. Heroine's sister lusts after Hero but is engaged to Hero's brother. Hero plots to run away with Heroine's sister. Hero tells Heroine of plot. The sister tells their father and the father ruins plot. Hero blames Heroine. Hero runs away and becomes The Black Knight. Returns as an adult to find Heroine's sister is dead and Hero's brother is about to marry Heroine. Hero falls in lust with Heroine and plots to get revenge. Hero's brother marries Heroine. Hero rapes Heroine on her wedding night. Hero's brother walks in after ward. Hero runs away. Hero's brother beats Heroine. Heroine fights him off and then chases after Hero. Hero forcibly makes her his mistress. Heroine refuses because she is a married woman but then that twu wuv kicks in.

Rubbish. Utter rubbish.

Posted on Jun 21, 2011 12:13:19 AM PDT
Beesocks says:
Cover of Night by Linda Howard **spoilery bits**
I love me some Linda Howard, but this book had the dumbest plot. Widowed h with two little boys in a tiny, isolated mountain town has a guest skip out of her B&B who turns out to be On The Run from Bad Guys. Bad Guys assume that the dude *must* have left the Important Thing behind (because OF COURSE he must have conveniently forgotten the disk full of evidence he stole from the head bad guy in his luggage, you know how it is, always forgetting SOMETHING in your hotel room) and instead of searching for the dude, hold the h at gunpoint to steal his luggage and are routed by the (here it comes!) ex special forces shy guy handyman!!!

(of course they can't just sneak in and try to steal the disk during the night like normal bad guys) They decide to TAKE THE WHOLE TOWN HOSTAGE!!! YEAH!!! That will totally work! Blow up the only bridge into town, take out the phone lines, shoot a dozen people from the hill... easy peasy, he knows a guy. They tell the town that they just want what the h is hiding from them and they'll leave them alone. The town is all wtf, the h is all wtf (the reader is all WTF?!? O_O !!) Luckily for the h, her mom had just grabbed up the grandkids for a super fun trip back to the city, so you know they'll be safe!

Stuff happens, lurve with the shy (but bad a$$ handyman) an aborted attempt to climb out of the valley (foreshadowed by repeated references to h's love of climbing with her dead husband and the dusty pile of rope in the attic) whereupon the handyman just goes out and kills all the bad guys. Meanwhile, the dude with the disk is like, five states away handing his disk over the the FBI and going into protective custody and has no idea the trouble he left behind in peaceful Trail Stop... There's also a side romance with the handyman's former special forces boss guy and a former nun, who owns the feed store.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 21, 2011 7:05:45 AM PDT
desdecar says:
@beesocks - this was the very book I thought of when I saw the post. I HATED this one!

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 21, 2011 12:42:23 PM PDT
Beesocks says:
You know, I didn't HATE this one as much as I've hated some books. I didn't love the heroine as much as I liked the hero (super shy extra hot former special forces handyman! he can kill bad guys AND unclog your drains! woohoo!) I still reread it from time to time because I liked the H, he's all endearingly shy with the h, and there's one scene after the town gets shot up where they're in the basement that I like. I just skip through LOTS of the book for the few good parts. I'm a huge Linda Howard fan, but this one is just not good.

That whole plot of Let's Take Over The Town! was just SO stupid and yanked me out of the story with how dumb it was every time I thought about it. The part where they try to climb the mountain and escape was kind of thrown in there just to give them an excuse to Be Alone Together. There's WAY too much from the bad guy's POV, and the ending is just very rushed and tacked on.

One of the reviews said that its really about one bad guy's plot to get revenge on the other bad guy by encouraging the dumb idea, and the romance is just secondary... I think they're right :P

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 21, 2011 2:27:05 PM PDT
M. Moss says:
This is one of the 3 Linda Howard books that I did not read, tried to but lord was it a stinker, the others are ICE another stupid plot and Blood Born, freaking boring is what it is.

Like your take on the plot (LoL) especially the **The town is all wtf, the h is all wtf (the reader is all WTF?!? O_O !!) **
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Discussion in:  Romance forum
Participants:  102
Total posts:  319
Initial post:  Jun 16, 2011
Latest post:  Aug 5, 2013

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