Skip to main content

Granny Reads: Silhouette Christmas Stories 1990

When my husband and I moved into our current home, our landlord left behind several of his late wife's books, which were mostly romance novels. I love romance novels, but am too cheap/lazy to go out of my way to acquire them, so I was pretty excited about this unexpected bounty. Unfortunately, thanks in large part to the roughly 50 year age gap between us, the books aren't exactly what I'd pick out for myself. A lot of the titles seem to fall in that weird gray area between old school romance, where the heroes "seduced" (aka raped) the heroines in order to convince them who they should marry, and modern day romance where rape is extremely frowned upon. Still, I find that transition fascinating and so I'm enjoying reading these books for historical, if not entertainment, purposes, and I thought it might be fun to share what I found.

Since we just celebrated Christmas, I thought it would be appropriate to share Silhouette Christmas Stories 1990, a collection of contemporary (at least for 1990) tales by Ann Major, Rita Rainville, Lindsay McKenna, and Kathleen Creighton. The gray area between New School and Old School romance is really on display here. In all but one of the stories the decision to pursue someone romantically is made by the hero only. Both characters acknowledge an attraction, but we spend significant time watching the hero develop that attraction into an actual desire to have a relationship with the heroine. On the other hand, we spend very little time hearing the heroine's motivation for pursuing a relationship with the hero. The hero does the vast majority of the acting and the heroine's role is essentially to accept those actions. Even further frustrating me is that all three of these stories star single mothers and I hate stories where women are passive characters exponentially more when there are children to witness their mother's spinelessness.

However, Lindsay McKenna's story, "Always and Forever" was a little different. She tells the story of two people in the Air Force who meet when the heroine marries the hero's best friend. However, it's the middle of the Vietnam War, and shortly after the wedding, the heroine's husband is reported missing in action, and the hero steps in to comfort his best friend's wife. Over the years they keep up a really touching, open, and honest correspondence, becoming truly close friends. When it is eventually discovered that the heroine's husband was killed and the hero and heroine are free to admit the true depth of their feelings for each other, it's actually the heroine who makes the grand gesture to express her romantic interest in the hero, because he's too worried about dishonoring his dead friend's memory to be anything more than chaste with the woman he's wanted from the moment he met her. The rest of the stories in this series felt really dated, but aside from several mundane details, this one still feels relevant and relatable.
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

2017 Reading Resolutions

Last year, I just barely squeaked out my 100 books, so I'm going to do attempt doing the same this year.

Total Books: 90 of 100

As in previous years, I'd also like to focus on reading books I own that have been languishing on my shelves. I'll be a little more realistic in my goal, though, and try to make this year the first I actually reach this particular milestone.

Books I Own: 15 of 25
The Elephants in My Backyard: A Memoir by Rajiv SurendraNever Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story by JewelSuddenly One Summer by Julie JamesOn the Construction Site by Carron BrownOn the Space Station by Carron BrownSecrets of the Seashore by Carron BrownScarlett Epstein Hates it Here by Anna BreslawBreaking Character by Cameron GreyFinanicial Peace Junior: Teaching Kids How to Win With Money by Dave RamseyThe Wedding Trap by Adrienne BellThe 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins by Dr. SeussMother Bruce by Ryan T. HigginsHotel Bruce by Ryan T. HigginsBruce's Big Move by Ryan T. HigginsMy Li…

NASIG 2015 - Day 3

The conference overload was starting to happen on Friday, but I soldiered on. At breakfast I talked to someone from a regional library council. Her background is in special libraries, but in her current position she works with a ton of teeny tiny public libraries, so I was excited to find someone with some common ground.As for the opening speaker, I was pleasantly surprised. The head honcho at Alexander Street Press talked about the future of open access publishing and the reception was mixed. First, he was surprised that librarians didn't think all scholarly publishing was going to be open access in the next decade. Then when he described how publishers were going to stay in business, basically by providing services that either make it easier for researchers to publish or to find what they're looking for in bare bones open access text, the crowd seemed ready to revolt and scream that that wasn't really open access. Maybe because I'm not in academia I'm not so up i…

2016 Reading in Review

I just barely got through my 100 book goal this year (and I'll admit, there were a lot of children's books padding that total), but I have to say I really enjoyed what I read. So now, without further ado, my favorites from what I read this year:

The Holy Bible - This was, without a doubt, my biggest reading accomplishment of the year. A feat I've attempted several times, but 2016 was the year I was successful. Reading this epic work as a whole helped me make sense of the less exciting parts and get a much better big picture view of the work as whole.Hamilton: The Revolution by Lin-Manuel Miranda & Jeremy McCarter - Was there anything I was more obsessed with this year than Hamilton? That's why this annotated script interspersed with short pieces about the show that's revolutionized Broadway has to be on this list. In 2017, I have tickets to finally see the production in Chicago.White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg - This…