Thursday, March 01, 2007

Night Fall by Anne Stuart

I read and loved Anne Stuart's earlier Black Ice and a review on All About Romance made this seem like a similar type of book, and also gave it a grade of A. So I requested it from the library.

I was disappointed. Um... ok, major spoilers here. The supposed hero needs to find someone to look after his children. The best plan he can come up with is: pick a woman whose picture he likes and treat her nastily to manipulate her into falling in lust with him. This apparently will induce in her a level of devotion sufficient to cause her to move to a different country and spend the next X years in hiding looking after aforementioned youngsters alone. He occasionally tests her fitness for the task, not by observing her with actual children or attempting to get her sympathy for his children by telling her their pitiful story, but by treating her ever more cruelly and noting with satisfaction her failure to sensibly flee. Were I the parent, I would not want a potential role model for my daughter to behave like that.

Black Ice had some similarity: a hero who behaved unheroically, even nastily. But once you accepted the basics of the plot (he was infiltrating a multinational arms cartel) his actions made sense; he behaved ruthlessly, but not psychotically. And when he started to care for the heroine, it changed him. It didn't make him into a nice person, but it had an impact, and watching that impact happen was the most fascinating aspect of the book.

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