Eden Burning
by Elizabeth Lowell, contemporary (2002, revised 1986 edition)
Avon, $7.99, ISBN 0-380-78995-7

Oh, money talks. Unless the author tells me that she rewrites this books because all proceeds from the book will go to the Society Dedicated to Rehabilitation of Ex-Romance Readers Traumatized by Too Many Bad Romance Novels, I'd say, oh yeah, money freaking talks, Elizabeth Lowell talks the dirty, and it's my $7.99 down the freaking drain. If the author has any sense of decency, she will buy every copy of this book in existence and send them all to the recycling mill, where Eden Burning can be remade into something more useful, like toilet paper.

See the copyright date? 1986? That's right. But the author has revised and rewritten the book. So what's the excuse for jerk behavior, doormat heroines, and plain shoddy plotting? "I hit my head in San Francisco"?

This book heralds back to an era when women are ballerinas, dancers, tangoists, opera singers, and other pink poodle types. Our heroine is Nicole Ballard. In her free time, she is a research assistant at the local Hawaiian volcanology labs. That, of course, is when she is not performing hot hula dances that send jolts of Peleian magma spurts down the groins of every male in her audience, and that is when she is not teaching lil' girls to dance the hula, so that they can all grow up to be 13-year old Britney Spears that will one day tempt more Lowellian heroes with severe Madonna/Whore complexes to hate them and lust after them.

And oh yeah, she is an artist too.

Needless to say, she probably didn't have time to finish school, because Nicole Ballard is an idiot.

Our hero Chase Wilcox is so rich. He is a volcanologist, a very good one. He is also an expert drummer. He hates women, because his slut wife didn't treat his daughter good, unlike he, a good Daddy, who ignores daughter to slut after Nicole, whom he believes to be a slut. He doesn't like the slut teaching his niece the hula, and he doesn't like his married brother all gushy over the slut. Because she's a slut. All women are sluts. So he will prove that she is slut. By sleeping with the slut, by slutting himself, because we all know any women that sleep with a man are sluts.

So when he's slutted himself with the slut, he tells his brother that he's forked the slut. The slut overhears, becomes violently ill (because good gals don't have sex unless it's... oh, never mind). He then realizes that the slut is no longer a slut. Because sluts don't get ill when they're called a slut. Or something. I don't know. You know what, can I just talk about something else?

So anyway, now that he realizes that she's not a slut because of reasons only understood by Chase and the author, he decides to woo her back. Not that he has too, because Nicole doesn't care. All's okay, baby, because he loves her. He can hurt her all he wants, as long as he says the magic words "I love you". "I love you" - dem powerful words, I say.

I love you, Elizabeth Lowell. Now bloody hell, give me back my freaking money now, dammit!

Rating: 08

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