The old “girl from the wrong side of the tracks meets rich all-American rich dude” trope can go horribly wrong for me. I’m OK with it if the heroine is unapologetic about who she is and how she grew up. (Like Emilia in Vicious, for example) But when the heroine is a whiny-ass baby and goes around boo-hooing about how a relationship between them can never work because of crap that happened when they were in high school, I have no tolerance for it. Girl, if you can’t enjoy the company of a single, sweet, sexy doctor who treats cancer kids because you grew up poor and some weenies in high school spread some unsavory rumors about you, well, you’re too stupid to have your own book, in my opinion. And in case I wasn’t clear, Sara, the heroine, is a whiny-ass baby about her past, even though in the present, she’s a good mom and teacher. Make like Elsa and let it go, Sara.
Harrison is a sweetie, but he falls for Sara REALLY fast. Frankly, I don’t see the attraction. To each his own, I suppose. (*shrugs*)
As if the drama of Sara constantly pushing Harrison away, then pulling him back in over and over again because of her stupid insecurities wasn’t enough, I also had to tolerate Sara’s quasi-stalker, jealous/jackass ex, grumpy sequel-bait sister, and Harrison’s intolerant (and frankly asshole-ish mother). It was all a bit too much. Sara was enough of a hot mess all on her own that these two didn’t need any of the other outside conflicts to keep them apart.
Grown-ass women who are ate-up over high school
Once you’re out of high school and a full-fledged grown-up with kids of your own, a mortgage, and a full-time job, if the crap that people said to you in high school still eats you up inside, you need to get psychological help. Sara wasn’t beaten up in high school. She wasn’t bullied day in and day out. All that happened was some rumors were spread. In the immortal words of Bobby Singer from Supernatural, “Well, boo-hoo. I’m so sorry your feelings are hurt, princess.” In other words, Sara, get over your crap and move on with your adult life.
So, long-story-short, I wanted to fix the hero up with a heroine from another book, because he was a great guy and Sara was a bit of a turd. I’ve definitely read worse free books, but I won’t be picking up the second book in the series, either. (Free or not)
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
It’s super stigma-y. Gross.
Other reading suggestions
Try something from our “opposites attract” best of list. You can’t go wrong there.