A Lady Never Surrenders by Sabrina Jeffries

February 17, 2012

Nobody likes me, everybody hates me,
I'm gonna eat some worms!
Long, slippy, slimy ones,
Short, fat, juicy ones,
Itsy, bitsy, fuzzy wuzzy worms!
I have a question.  When authors gather at the watering hole, do they all agree on what themes they are going to write about? You 25 authors write about virgin widows, you 25 write about women disguised as men and you 25 write about the I'm-not-good-enough-for-you syndrome.  And, then let's not stagger them throughout the year, but publish them in the same month. Then let's make sure SidneyKay buys all of the ones with the same framework.  I'm sure that doesn't happen. They probably don't gather at a watering hole and they probably scratch their heads and ask, SidneyKay who, but golly-gosh, gee willikers, we have another not good enough character but this time it's the hero.  Having just read a "Poor Me" book, maybe I should have put this one aside after the first couple of "I'm not worthy's" started to pop up.  I need to jot that down - when similarities appear, set aside book til later.  And to the peanut gallery, I would not be setting aside all of my books.

A Lady Never Surrenders by Sabrina Jeffries is the last in the series of the Hellion's of Halstead Hall.  This one is the story of Celia Sharpe and Jackson Pinter, the Bow Street Runner/detective.  Now, if you have been following the series (and I strongly advise before you read this one, you read the others) you will know that the wily grandmother is forcing her grandchildren to marry in a set amount of time or be faced with disinheritance.  So, that's one plot.  The other plot is the Sharpe siblings parents were murdered when the said siblings were young and this plot has continued through all five books, with hints here and there until the bad guy/girl is caught.  So that's another plot.  Then there is a sort of secondary plot of who is Jackson's father, but that doesn't really take up too much time.  And, of course Celia has to find a husband.  By my count we have four plots and they all have to be wrapped up by the time we read the last chapter, turn out the lights and go to sleep.

When I began A Lady Never Surrenders, I enjoyed the moments Celia and Jackson were together.  Their bantering/bickering was fun and I wish it had gone on a little bit longer. I liked the way Celia could out-shoot most of the men - her so-called suitors.  I loved watching Jackson struggle against the attraction he felt for Celia, I thought his jealous thoughts were pretty funny.  It's always a treat when strong men can't control their feelings.  For once we have a hero who isn't an aristocrat; nope, he's a self-made man.  And, it is here that I have a problem. Most self-made men I've ever been around are pretty confident with themselves, even dare I say it, a little arrogant.  However, Jackson had the "I'm not Worthy" complex - a heap of it.  The "I'm not worthy" did not blend well with the confidence he exhibited in everything else he did.  And after a while, his continual beating himself up became rather annoying. 

By the way, is it just me or has any one else noticed the increase in hairy ballocks?  Is this a new trend?  Are we to be inundated with hairy things flapping behind our heroes' purple-headed Mr. Toads?   Over the years I've become accustomed to the angry red large-veined heads belonging to Mr. Toad, but I don't know if I'm ready to read about my heroes' hairy ballocks.  Thank goodness they are not sweaty.   That would be too much for me to bear.

I digress.  Even though I thought Jackson's boo-hooing was annoying, I did like Celia and Jackson as a couple.  I wish that more time had been spent on the development of their romance.  I was also disappointed with the scooby-doo murder/mystery wrap up of who killed the parents.  It felt rushed and I could almost see someone ripping a mask off, shouting Rit Ras Rer.

Overall, liked the romance part of the book; the mystery, not so much.  This was better than the last one in the series, but not as good as A Hellion in Her Bed.

Time/Place: Regency England
Sensuality Rating: Hot


Pillow said...

I wasn't a fan of Celia. I do agree with you about Jackson. I think their story could have gone in a different direction. And the grandmother?? What was her issue? I think I tolerated the other books in the series because they had their own stories, but this one was very dependent on the grandmother's got annoying.

Have you read Nicole Jordan's "Princess Charming" yet? I started it, but can't seem to continue...just wondering if it was worth the read. I have just stumbled upon your reviews and seem to agree with a lot of what you write. I am tired of purchasing thing off of reviews on Amazon. A lot of 5-star glowing reviews for books that don't deserve them.

Anonymous said...

came.The disjointed feel of the book made me think even the author was muttering "let's get this over with," and as a result everybody was a bit bored.


SidneyKay said...

Dick, couldn't agree with you more. The ending to this one was really thrown together.

Pillow, the grandmother was a peach wasn't she? I have Nicole Jordan's book, but haven't started it yet, mainly because her last one left me flat. As far as the reviews for this book, I was a little surprised at their glow myself.

Tracy said...

I'm looking forward to this one because I like the series. I'll admit that what I've seen of Celia so far in the previous books really didn't endear her to me but I'm trying to keep an open mind. lol

Thanks for the review.

Melissa said...

I actually enjoyed Celia and Jackson a lot. I chose to ignore the other issues and enjoy their bantering. Grandma Plumtree was very annoying with all her maneuvering and I was rather disappointed in her, but enjoyed Jackson's remarks on her behavior. I did find it confusing that Jackson kept feeling unworthy. If he had stood up to Grandma Plumtree, the book could have focused on the murder mystery instead of us suffering through the whole hunting Celia down on the road story, which felt rather contrived.