I'm reading this book for the Pop Sugar Reading Challenge ("book published the year you were born" category - yay for 1979). It is horrible and I stopped at chapter four last night because I couldn't take it anymore. This book is so old-skool romance that it is painful to read, but I don't want to read anything else from that year either, so I am sticking with this one. The high-ish lights:
1. Love triangle spotted within first chapter. In this corner, childhood friend Morgan, who is clumsy at all romantic gestures (yes, even getting him trying to get frisky with heroine is cringe worthy) but he loves her so damn much (*cough* obsessive *cough*). In that corner, 32 year old privateer (he sides with the Americans in the Revolution, so he is a good privateer) Frenchman Andre, who knows how to kiss and other stuff because experience. This dumb as a box of rocks heroine, Devon, bumps into Andre by accident at the tender age of 13 and is instantly in love/lust with Andre (who at the time was about 27). At the fourth chapter point (Devon is 18, Morgan is 19, and Andre is 32), I hope they all die of syphilis.
2. All the characters are horrible people. Completely unlikeable. There is no actual villain yet, so just random, ugly on the inside people. Except for the heroine (strawberry blonde goddess ahoy!), who is perfectly perfect in every way.
3. Did I mention the TSTL heroine? She turns 18 and is kissed twice in the same day (see point #1). Of course, Andre's kiss flames the passion inside her, including the tingling sensation in "her hidden place" (oh man, the euphasisms are going to kill me) and make her breasts taut when she touches herself. She is so pure and innocent that she doesn't know what to do with these new feelings and has no women friends to talk to about these feelings. So she quickly dresses and tries to hide her shameful lust.
I hate sex-shaming, especially in romance novels. I don't care if the hero or heroine is a virgin or not, but don't make out sex to be shameful if it is not done within the confines of a partner's (especially male partner) gaze/actions. UGH, UGH, UGH.
I also hate isolated heroes and heroines. Seriously, only one friend and he has to be a potential lover? Not one woman friend in the entire bustling port town of New London to be friends with? I AM NOT BUYING IT.
4. Silver lining - it takes place in a time/location other than Regency England. Considering my usual choices, this is pretty bold choice.
I am probably going to knock out the travel book on Scotland to help break up the pain of reading this book.