Jove, $6.99, ISBN 0-515-13464-3
Historical Romance, 2003
Related to Isle of Lies.
A more appropriate title for this book is Babble Me Forever. Or Psychoanalyze Me Forever. Of course, following the current trend of heroines being as dumb as a rotting tree stump, this book ends up being an interminable tale of idiots who just won’t shut their trap up. There are many adjectives to describe this word, but “interesting” is definitely not one of them.
Brianna, survivor of an abusive marriage, is on her way to rape and pillage and plunder some villages for fresh meat in her harem when she discovers a helpless virginal looking young man of maybe eighteen bathing naked in the river. Oops, sorry, that was another version of this book, from an alternate dimension. The real story is that Brianna is on her way to do charity work and be selfless and joyless forever when her carriage overturns. She doesn’t die – don’t get your hopes too high. A warrior named Royce nurses her back, but he is very ugly. He is scarred and battered and all from a recent battle where he has single-handedly cut down everybody else, but he is also looking for love, and one look at her – woosh. Love, people. Woosh. As for her, she wakes up and screams.
As it’s winter, they are forced to weather it together, Beauty and the Beast style, and they talk each other into falling in love. I’m not kidding: he says one thing, they will analyze it to death for a few pages, and then she says some other equally analyzable thing, and they happily continue their deep and meaningful chatter. What’s love? Why do I love you? Why do you love me? How do I know if you really love me? How do you know that I know that you really love me? How do I know that you know that I know that you really love me? Do I love you or do I just need you? Do love need you or do love I me? Do re mi? So fa la ti do? Isn’t this fun, people? Do you think it is fun? How do you know it is fun?
Winter is long, winter is cold. Like Robert Frost would say, I have miles to go before I sleep, so bloody hell, get me out of here now!
Then, finally, they get out of the house. Then she learns that he is… well, he is a hero, but to her, his “lying” to her means that she must now never trust him ever and so here she comes, PhD holder in too-stupid-just-die antics. Oh spare me. The hero of course will have to be the one to clean up her mess. Maybe there’s a profound epic theorem in there about the limitations of sanity, but I’m just thankful that I finish this book without expiring from boredom.