WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker's Reviews > In a Class By Itself

In a Class By Itself by Sandra Brown
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did not like it
bookshelves: contemporary, non-series

I've been posting my reviews online for about 10yrs now, I know I've liked books that could have some problematic characters, actions, and storylines (This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips, comes to mind) but as I get older and in our current climate, I'm really having to challenge and make decisions on what I'll go along with for the sake of the story.

Suddenly he bellowed and vaulted out of the tub. Reaching down, he closed his fist around her mane of hair and hauled her up with him. Furious, dripping water and rage in equal proportions, he shoved his angry face toward hers. His voice was surprisingly mild. She would have preferred shouting.

I wish I could say that this would have stopped me in my tracks at 25yrs old as it did at 35yrs old, but I'm not sure. All I know is that currently, it made me immediately put the book down. This is the "hero" acting towards the heroine.

They were high school sweethearts who ran away to get married but her parents forced them to get an annulment because they thought the hero was too poor and other-side of the tracks. They meet back up at their 10yr high school reunion where the hero not quite so teasingly demands a wedding night. They are being hot and heavy when the heroine tries to put the breaks on and she then tells him why she stayed after the reunion broke up at his house, the charity she helps wants to buy some land the hero owns. He gets angry because he thinks she was using her body to get a good deal on the land. He then basically holds her hostage claiming he'll sell her the land if she lives at this house as his concubine.

It's a hurt revenge angle that was seen quite often in '80s romance, along with the endless descriptions of fashion (the heroine has an eel skin purse and matching heels!). After this scene, there really was no hope for me to ever connect to the hero, he physically assaulted the heroine in my eyes. I skim read the rest of the book (I rate books whether I read fully, skim, or dnf, it is the way I keep track of books so don't @ me) and wasn't all into the heroine still wanting the hero to love her.

Everyone has their own opinions but please, let's all agree that this was assault/abuse and call it as so.
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Reading Progress

October 1, 2018 – Started Reading
October 1, 2018 – Shelved
October 9, 2018 – Shelved as: contemporary
October 9, 2018 – Shelved as: non-series
October 9, 2018 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-6 of 6 (6 new)

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message 1: by Vivian (new)

Vivian I completely understand.


EuroHackie Just be glad you skimmed the almost-rape and the heroine apologizing to the "hero" for it. SMH.

I read a bunch of old Sandra Browns recently and the only one that held up was The Rana Look, and even that one had some flaws. At least the heroine in that one told off the hero for being a gigantic ass and didn't back down from it!


message 3: by ♥ℳelody (new)

♥ℳelody I totally get it, Kim. Stuff like that now makes me pause more too. I've become much more picky.


message 4: by WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker (last edited Oct 10, 2018 08:21AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker @Vivian - Thank you :)

@EuroHackie - It is sad, but those scenes show up in old school books so much, I'm ready/prepared for them that they almost seem less jarring. I certainly don't enjoy them but when I skimmed that part, I was more like "ah, yes, there it is". I'll have to see if I have Rana and put it to the top of my boxes of books, I need a good smack down from the heroine. Thanks for the rec!

@Melody - I have all these old school romances from going crazy at garage sales and I don't know if I should just ship them out or continue to be saddened by what romanclandia allowed. I think of the old Mary Balogh, Truly, though and what an absolute hidden gem that was and I can't stop myself from hunting for more. I was told about grey hairs but not about growing more picky with my romance books when I hit mid-thirties :/ lol.


EuroHackie You're welcome! I hope you enjoy it, at least the setdown part :) I did my SB glom via my local library, but I liked Rana enough to hunt down a copy of my own. It's not perfect - it was written in 1986, after all - but I was so surprised to come across that passage. It was one of those eerie moments when you realize that something from the 80s is still 1000% on point today.


WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker Oh my god, that may be one of the best and most satisfying set-downs I have ever read! I need to hunt this book down.


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