TJ's Reviews > And Then He Kissed Her

And Then He Kissed Her by Laura Lee Guhrke
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's review
Dec 26, 2009

did not like it
bookshelves: historical-romance
Read in January, 2010

First a disclaimer: The one star is based solely on my personal preferences and not on the obvious trend in romance reading. That having been said...This book has very little to do with what the description on the cover states. It is more a study in how a man worms and wheedles his way into a woman of strong moral character and virtue's bed. It takes two thirds of the book to do this, with him, in the final third, enjoying an illicit affair with her even though she feels horribly guilty and used. The final page's resolution did little to stop me from throwing this book against the wall out of frustration.
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03/04/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-30 of 30) (30 new)

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 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) Thanks for posting your thoughts, Tammy. Your review gives me something to think about.

Barbara Tammy...I think you and I are completely alone with our opinion of this book. I'm seeing all the 4 & 5 Stars and thinking "WHAT?!" Did they read the same book I did?!

It's nice to see that I'm not crazy for thinking this book was just awful and a pure waste of time.

message 3: by TJ (new) - rated it 1 star

TJ THANK YOU!!! I thought the same thing when I saw other people's reviews! It is so nice to hear I am not all alone!

Tammy Walton Grant Hi Tam -- I can tell from your review that something here rubbed you really hard the wrong way -- so now of course, I just gotta read it.

message 5: by TJ (new) - rated it 1 star

TJ Ya think! I thought it was just plain disgusting. Even if you like it, I think you can see where my opinion's coming from, it is pretty obvious.

Tammy Walton Grant Isn't that funny how one little thing can stick in your craw and ruin the whole book for you? There is such a disparity between your review and some other folks on here that it makes me more curious than anything else.

message 7: by TJ (new) - rated it 1 star

TJ I know! I was absolutely amazed that it didn't bother more people. I think you should read it, just so you can see what I'm talking about and explain to me why anyone would ever actually like watching a girl fight and fight to stay true to her character and morals while the man could care less about her feelings, when she finally succumbs to him near the end and thus must become his mistress but absolutely HATES herself for it. I could see no honor in him at all and felt horrible for her, I don't understand people loving that.

Tammy Walton Grant Wow. That does sound sh*tty. Does she still hate herself at the end, or does it all get wrapped up in a pretty bow?

message 9: by Karla (last edited Dec 06, 2010 05:05AM) (new)

Karla From what I've read in other reviews, it sounds like the same type of relationship that people would loathe in the old bodice rippers. *sniff* Hypocrites.

But what bugs me most is that it's apparently set in the Victorian era? Why the hell is the woman wearing such an outdated dress on the cover? 1893 my ass. More than likely this book reads like it could be Regency or Victorian. Did it strike you as wallpaperish in that respect, because it sure looks like it.

message 10: by Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) (last edited Dec 06, 2010 06:08AM) (new) - added it

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) Tammy, I feel the same way. I don't like that storyline where a hero makes a heroine do something she feels is wrong like that. If he valued her truly, he wouldn't want her to make that kind of sacrifice. It's why I have been putting off reading this book. In general, I don't like mistress storylines because it sticks in my craw. Especially when the hero wears down the heroine until she becomes his mistress. So you are not alone. I have a couple of rare expections like Claiming the Courtesan, because it might seem like the power rested with the hero, but it truly didn't. Thanks for being brave enough to put your opinion out there against the tide.

message 11: by Karla (new)

Karla Hmm, I wonder if there are any historicals out there about an alpha female who overpowers the hero's moral inclinations? I don't mind either setup...I just find it interesting that some people who probably wouldn't read an old bodice ripper because of the whole coercive dynamic in the relationship like this book with the same theme.

message 12: by TJ (last edited Dec 06, 2010 11:08AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

TJ Karla,
I think the only reason the author used the Victorian era was so that the heroine had an excuse to work outside the home (for the "hero") and still be an aristocrat. Other than that it is totally wallpaper.

THANK YOU! That is also why I don't read many "mistress" books. In that era it was usually NOT what the lady wanted but was forced into, that just breaks my heart to read and is exactly what happens in this book. He doesn't want to be married so uses her feelings for him to wear her down until he gets his way. We get to see the whole process. Then experience her self loathing and guilt while they continue an affair and this is at the end of the book - the "wrapping it up" phase.

Yep, after all that guilt and self loathing. The last few pages tie it neatly with a nice little bow - YUCK!

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) Based on what you've said, there is a good chance I won't enjoy this one, Tammy! (Shoving book to bottom of my tbr pile!)

message 14: by Karla (new)

Karla Ugh, then I'll definitely be giving this one a miss. It sounds unbearably wallpaper, and I love the late Victorian era. I'll want some actual details and presence in the plot, not just for convenience's sake.

message 15: by TJ (new) - rated it 1 star

TJ I am so happy to be a help in lowering that pile! Life is just to short to waste on annoying books :-)

message 16: by TJ (new) - rated it 1 star

TJ Karla,
Eeeh, now I'm worrying. It has been a year since I read the book, maybe there were some details I can't remember. My dislike of the plot might be clouding my memory of the setting...

message 17: by Karla (last edited Dec 06, 2010 11:43AM) (new)

Karla No, I'm sure you're more correct than not about it. Just mentioning the furnishings or inventions of the time (typewriters) is wallpaper. The cover is enough to turn me off because That. Dress. Is. Not. Victorian.

And quoting another review here:
"I enjoyed this historical. This isn't a time period (1893) that I've read very much about, so I admit some of the details (the typewriter, omnibus and trains) would catch me off guard and cause me to pause until I remembered I wasn't reading a Regency story."

So the plot sounds like its a Regency, but it's only the superficial details like trains and typewriters that say "Not a Regency." :-\

Tammy Walton Grant Awesome discussion! Here's what might be a silly question -- is a declaration of undying love from the hero the pretty bow at the end? If so, what a cop out.

And, since I've just finished Claiming the Courtesan so I'm full of angst and torment, is there any of that in this book or is it one of those historical lite romances? I know you have all talked about how wallpapery it is, so I'm curious.

Finally, and just to be snarky, that dress on the cover is hid-eeee-ous. That colour looks good on no one, lol. And you're right, Karla - not Victorian in the slightest.

message 19: by Karla (new)

Karla If it's 1893, it should either have this sort of style, if it's a dress (oooooh, pretty! *__*)
[image error]

or this, if it's a nightgown.
[image error]

It's neither, so the cover artist sucks and needs to get out of a Regency rut. Maybe it's irrational, but I'm really annoyed by this. :P

Tammy Walton Grant Not irrational in the slightest, Karla - I'm starting to miss the 70s and 80s cover paintings. At least they wore corsets and petticoats.

message 21: by Karla (new)

Karla Corsets promote boob spillage. I've noticed that the covers done is a muzzy style like this Gurke title, everyone seems to be in a hybrid dress/nightgown, no matter the era. Feh. I want bustles and wasp waists and whatever women were actually wearing at the time.

Tammy Walton Grant Word to that.

I guess boob spillage isn't so prominent (haha, pardon the pun) now that it's ok for the heroine to be almost flat-chested! (says the flat-chested BR/HR reader).

message 23: by Karla (new)

Karla And as a former big-busted gal, all those huge hooters on the covers would not be as pert as the story inside would lead you to believe. :P

Tammy Walton Grant Haha! You never hear about the back problems and stretch marks, do you? How are you, BTW - recovering nicely?

message 25: by Karla (new)

Karla Recovering nicely. :) I haven't had to take Advil since Nov. 29th - the neck/shoulders/back is feeling great. For now...I'm always cautious. :P

Tammy Walton Grant Glad to hear it :D

Emery Lee Hi Ladies-
Thought I would chime in on this one as well as I didn't see it quite the same way. I never got the indication that she hated herself for having an illicit affair with him. It was HER choice and she walked into it with her eyes wide open. There was no deception on his part. The heroine knew EXACTLY what kind of man he was yet is attracted to him anyway. She did not have to remain in his employ. Although she at first walked away, and could have held her head up and slept the remainder of her days in her cold lonely bed. Just as she secretly in her heart of hearts wanted to be the object of his passion- something she never could have believed in her wildest imaginings, but over time, in their interactions, his respect for her mind makes him more aware of her as a woman and he wants her. At one point she walks away knowing full well what she risks but she’s in love and willing to accept his terms (better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all…) She wanted to be with him. He awakened her.
I’m not saying that I completely agree with her choice, as it could have turned out very badly, but many people have been fools for love, and she was in love for the first time at thirty years old. I’m just happy that his regard for her grew as strong as hers for him.

message 28: by Audrey (new)

Audrey Tammy, thanks for this review. Your thoughts and the commentary that has been exchanged have been very helpful. I also don't like the "made a mistress" storyline for historicals and now know to remove this book from my wish list.

Emery Lee LOVE the dress!

Tammy Walton Grant Emery wrote: "Hi Ladies-
Thought I would chime in on this one as well as I didn't see it quite the same way. I never got the indication that she hated herself for having an illicit affair with him. It was HER c..."

Emery, I don't think I ever got a notification that you had commented on this thread! (darn you, GR!) Your perspective helps - I just read the kindle sample and am trying to decide whether or not to read it. I always find it so interesting how opinions of the same book can be so very different.

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