Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Book Review: With Open Arms

Author: Nora Roberts
Title: With Open Arms
Publisher: Silhouette
Publish Date: May 2004
Rating: 4 Stars
Book Blurb: Available for the first time in over a decade, two classic novels of heartwarming romance from #1 New York Times bestselling author Nora Roberts

Song of the West

The towering mountains and windswept plains called to her. But she'd never intended to stay forever -- until Jake Tanner stirred her emotions like a summer tornado and made it impossible for her to leave. But no man was going to seduce Samantha Evans to give up her dreams. Even a cocky cowboy who made her blood go hot . . .

Her Mother's Keeper

She'd left town a starry-eyed innocent headed for the big city. Now Gwen Lacrosse returned home a savvy, sophisticated woman. But her mother's maddening new boarder enticed her as no one had before. Luke Powers was reputed to be an expert in both words and women -- and soon he was turning Gwen's cool reason into something else entirely . . .

Review: These were 2 really cute and sweet books that Nora wrote early in her career for Silhouette. Both were written in the early 80s. Song Of The West was published originally published in 1982 and Her Mother's Keeper was originally published in 1984.

If you don't know that going in, these stories will be a culture shock for you. There's a lot of innuendo but this was a time when the "Romance" lines were about as clean as any YA novel.

Of the two books included in this anthology I'm partial to Song Of The West. I really loved Samantha and Jake and all the family and friends that surround them. I loved Sam's innocence that wasn't overwhelming.

I often wondered how Sam could just up and leave house and home for several months to take care of her sister. What plant did she live on, and did she not have bills?

That was really my only problem with this story. But hey! It's romantic fiction. Life is different in these stories!

Her Mother's Keeper wasn't nearly as good as Song Of The West. Both books suffered from "jumping to conclusions". In Song Of The West, Sam assumed Jake wanted to marry Lesley, even though he was obviously attracted to her. Now in Her Mother's Keeper, that's stepped up a notch. Gwen thinks Luke is involved with her mother, even though at every turn he's trying to get her in bed.

I had quite a few problems with this story and most revolved around Gwen, who was supposed to be ultra sophisticated at 23. Uh 23 in the 80s and working for Style magazine in a good position.

HOW! She would only have been out of college for a few years? That's quite a rise! Plus her actions were far from sophisticated, as her dealings with her ex Michael and Luke prove.

Then there's her mom, who is 47, and she treats her like she's 87! I had to keep reminding myself of when this was written because a 47 year old women dating a 35 year old wouldn't be a great issue today. Personally I find the opposite more annoying the 23 year old with the 35 year old.

This story just made me wonder what the characters had in common other than a mutual attraction.

Still, the stories Nora weaved here are show how great she was even in the beginning.


Deepali said...

interesting! i do enjoy Nora novels occasionally, but dont recall reading these.

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