Tempting the Bride by Sherry Thomas

October 8, 2012
Don't run away mad!  Your may get run over by a horse!  You may lose your...oops, too late.

I love Sherry Thomas!  I've thought her voice was magnificent ever since she made her appearance four years ago.  However, when she introduced the Fitzhugh family series I knew I was in for a rough ride.  You see, this series was jammed packed with my numerous pet peeves and triggers.  But, I thought - hey - this is Sherry Thomas, she can pull it off.  So, I held my breath as each story in the series was released.

It's been an interesting journey because most of the characters in the series haven't been all that likeable.  Ms. Thomas was able to redeem the previous characters enough to satisfy me.  Now we come to Hastings (hero) and Helena (heroine).  Insert sigh here.

As I read Tempting the Bride I felt as if Ms. Thomas was channeling Rosemary Rogers' Sweet Savage Love.  Such an unpleasant, bickering couple who seemed to be auditioning for their own realty show.  All that negative name-calling I hate you stuff was really t-o-o much.

Supposedly, Hastings fell in love with Helena when they were young.  She was his dream girl, which doesn't say too much of him if she was his dream.  Yipes!

Helena.  Helena is one of the most selfish, hateful shrews I've read in a long time.  She doesn't have a rotten childhood so there's no excuse for her actions.  She's in love with Martin the married man, a wuss if ever I saw one.  She has pseudo sex with him - that's when you do everything but "it."  Because our heroines must be pure!  Anyway, she is told repetitively to stay away from him.  Her family goes through all kinds of gyrations to keep her and their reputations from harm.  But she disregards it all.

Banter.  I enjoy couple who banter; I love that snappy come back.  I can only assume that the conversations exchanged between Helena and Hastings were supposed to be bantering, but to my ears/eyes it came across as downright hateful.

Horses.  Watch out for those horses.  They show up at the most convenient plot turns.  Tempting the Bride is divided into three sections: "the I'm mean and nasty and I run into a horses hoof," "the after the horse hoof collision amnesia," and "I remember I hate you despite the horse."

The best part of the book is "the after the horse hoof collision amnesia."  The writing in this part is wonderful.  It's filled with vivid colors and scenes.  We are introduced to Hastings' illegitimate child, who I think is autistic.  All of the relationships and characters during this part were a joy to read.  There is even an interesting book within a book story in this section which is quite fascinating.  I just wish this section had been longer, but we all know that horse hoof amnesia can't last forever.  We then have the return of the mean girl and the call you names hero.  He does apologize for the name, so that must make it ok.  Just like a reality show.

I was disappointed in Tempting the Bride.  For me it was the weakest in the series.  The characters were too mean-spirited for way too long.  Ms. Thomas is an author of whom I have high expectations but in this case, they were not met.  The plot line had a disjointed, rushed feel about it.  Sorry to say Tempting the Bride didn't work for me.

Time/Place: Late Victorian England
Sensuality: Hot

1 comment:

Melissa said...

I agree with you completely. I loved the amnesia part of the story, but otherwise, I despised the heroine.