Posts Tagged ‘just mushy’
Woven into four worlds of chivalry and honor, of danger and desire, are threads as fine as the touch of their creator, or as rough as the earthy desires ringing in the cash register. Containing a healthy balance of these two types, Tapestry was a good read, an in-between-er that allowed me to rest my mind from my current main read, which is Prospero’s Children by Jan Siegel.
Of the four stories, my favorite is To Kiss in the Shadow by Lynn Kurland, where a young man discovers his noble quest is to love and protect a shy young woman hiding her ruined beauty behind a tapestry frame. An Interrupted Tapestry by Madeline Hunter is a sweet tale about a wealthy trader who won the best deal of his life by finally declaring his love to an impoverished noblewoman he has loved for years, saving her from dishonor in the process. Shamelessly indulgent and escapist, Dragonswan by Sherrilyn Kenyon followed up the lust-on-first sight with an info overload of the story’s mythology so the fight and bed scenes could get it on with little competition—I didn’t care for this one.
Karen Marie Moning’s Into the Dreaming involves another Highlander, made mad from being imprisoned by the Unseelie King in an ice world for centuries; to ruin the plans of her enemy, the Seelie Queen transports a 20th-century aspiring romance novelist to 15th-century Scotland to bring some life back into the man of her dreams.This last was very funny, though I must honestly say the aspiring writer-heroine sucks at writing. Fortunately, her medieval audience are less critical of her bawdy style of writing.
I love her gown, though. Bright yellow, empire waist, elegant lines…
Jane Austen must have spoiled me for other romances. Because when I read other romances, I usually end up disappointed. They say hi, then rip at each other’s clothes on page 7; or she is all sensible and smart initially, but a fool for a kiss on page 5. Where is the build up, the suspense, the integrity if all declarations of principles or virtue or determination are thrown out the window at the drop of a hat? Yet, I still read romances every now and then, to escape, to breathe, to wallow in fluff, hoping for a good read, if not an unforgettable romance.
Starting out fun, And Then He Kissed Her was a good, funny read –until about three fourths into the book, where the plot degenerated into formula, meaning the heroine suddenly turned into another person, who conveniently could sleep with the guy despite supposedly possessing a strict of set of values and principles that forbids becoming a man’s mistress. A woman of the 1890s, Emmaline Dove takes her reputation seriously. With heart set on becoming a writer of manners and etiquette, she stuck with her job, secretary to Lord Marlowe, publisher and determined bachelor, for five years. Thinking he was her best chance of making her dream come true, she bit her tongue, bought present for her boss’s amours, and assumed a bland front against the man’s womanizing.
She almost had him fooled—until he had the gall to reject her manuscript without even bothering to read it through, and he saw how interesting Miss Emma actually was.
Well, what followed is his pursuit of her, and her fall from grace (in my book), bur not because she gave in, but because she gave in to the oldest line in man-will-do/say-anything to get woman-to-sleep-with-him-history, “sleep with me or you’re not a true woman.”
I don’t mind some bodice ripping in my stories, but I do like it if the woman keeps her integrity in the process.
Is Love Story timeless?
It seems so; a book club mate pointed out to me how many times the book was reprinted since 1970. How many times the movie was replayed on TV or reissued in different video formats is anybody’s guess.
Boy meets girl… rich boy, poor girl… they marry, they’re happy, they’re sad…
“What can you say about a twenty-five year old girl who died? That she was beautiful and brilliant. That she loved Mozart and Bach. The Beatles. And me.”
That’s really all about Love Story, a sweet and touching love story. the premise is simple, the writing light, the dialogue deft. it was such an easy read that i was able to finish it in a little over half an hour, when I snuck out of my book club’s film viewing for some speed reading.
Maybe that’s the brilliance of it–Segal kept it simple yet elegant. It was Love Story he wanted to present, and he kept to it, infusing just enough complications to keep the plot going.
“Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” I guess we need to be sappy every now and then.
Though i don’t care to read purely love stories these days, I was able to appreciate Love Story the book and movie because it wasn’t as mushy as I thought. The drama was really understated.
The back story of the phenomenon is also interesting. Eric Segal, a Harvard professor, wrote the book as a mockery to the Romance Bestsellers at that time. His mockery backfired, because his work ended up the Romance Bestseller.
Love Story is also one of those few cases in which screenplay came before the novel–and in which the movie may hold the more accurate vision of the writer than the book. If you criticize the movie ending, slightly different from that in the book as lacking closure, a rejection of a beloved’s death wish (read/see Love Story to figure out what I’m taking about), then you just might have to examine the story’s most famous line again…
“Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” There’s your answer.