SuperWendy's Reviews > To Dream Again

To Dream Again by Laura Lee Guhrke
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it was amazing
bookshelves: favorites
Read 2 times. Last read November 28, 2020 to December 6, 2020.

I first read this back in 2005 - and this was my first reread of it. I still loved it, but the pacing issues were a bit more "in my face" this go around. It does sag in spots but the emotional heft of this story more than makes up for those quibbles. I loved how Gurhke addressed the heroine's fears. She's a woman, in the late 19th century - at the mercy of men, with little agency. She's all out of f*cks when this story opens - her young daughter killed in a fire, her husband with itchy feet who keeps breaking promises and chasing get-rich-quick schemes. Now her husband is dead, the factory she's kept afloat in his absence is going to go under because the bank is calling in the loan - ironically because her husband is dead. Never mind she's been the one running the business. Enter stage left the hero, who pulls her factory back from the brink only to tell her they're going to build children's toys. Another dreamer. Another man with his head in the clouds.

Is it perfect? No. But it's emotionally challenging with a prickly heroine written back in the day when prickly heroines were nearly unheard of.

Note: published originally in 1995 the hero's Chinese mistress has not aged well. She's off-page and blessedly the word "exotic" isn't used nor is it implied that she "schooled the hero in the sensual arts" - but it's still not great. And frankly the mention of a mistress at all is pretty unnecessary to the story in general. I suspect it was added because back in 1995 a virgin hero wouldn't have been the norm and some throwaway sentences about a mistress would have been code for "Don't worry romance readers - our hero knows what he's doing!"

The villain is a bit over-the-top, but it's 2020 and having seen the things I've seen - what I would once have deemed as "over the top" is now? Well, not so much.
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Reading Progress

November 21, 2012 – Shelved (Mass Market Paperback Edition)
May 8, 2013 – Shelved as: favo... (Mass Market Paperback Edition)
November 28, 2020 – Started Reading
November 28, 2020 – Shelved
December 6, 2020 – Shelved as: favorites
December 6, 2020 – Finished Reading

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