Book Number 2 of the free, misfit romance novel collection! CHECK OUT THAT COVER, people. I mean, you can totally see why I bought it, right? He looks like a g.d. wolfman!!! Obviously, I needed it in my life. But anyhow, this doesn’t feel like a substantial book in your hand. It feels kind of short – so I thought, oh well maybe it’s straight-forward, right to the point, no messing around. Right? Well. Not right. In another genre you might call this novel “dense” or perhaps “twisty.” In the romance genre, however, I prefer to catalog this book as OMFG WHAT THE HELL JUST HAPPENED WHAT THE HELL COULD POSSIBLYHAPPEN NEXT WTF ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!?!?!
So! This second romance novel is similar to the last one, in that a TON of shit happens one after another after another in a dizzying parade of awful shit. So the heroine, Lucilla (Lucy Goosey, let’s call her, just because), is moping around her big house and then she gets kidnapped by her nanny and taken to this warehouse and introduced to some rich dude who, I don’t know, bought her or something, but she escapes from the warehouse and hides out on a boat and falls asleep, and of course when she wakes up the boat has left London and she almost gets raped by this one sailor but another sailor saves her and protects her and she’s all, ooooh he’s so nice and protectory, and then they kiss, and then they make out, and then they do some boat-rockin’ IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN, and then she wants to go wash the sex stink off herself and the nice sailor gets attacked by the rapist sailor AND KILLED and Lucy Goosey runs screaming all over the ship until she runs into this rich dude passenger and he helps her talk to the captain (who’s Italian and doesn’t speak-a the English) and he and his rich wife are sort of weird but maybe just eccentric and they seem nice even though something about the way they talk makes me think they’re planning to skin her and make a Lucy Goosey suit, and they’re like, don’t be sad about that dead sailor, and she’s like OK I won’t!, and just like that she isn’t sad anymore so she goes with them to Marseilles where the wife teaches her how to flirt shamelessly with random dudes and then passionately kisses her goodnight and then she lays in bed touching herself while she listens to them have sex. That’s the first 60 or so pages of the book. Ridiculous, right?! According to the blurb on the back, there’s like four dudes that cross her path IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN before she meets THE DUDE, which is just…I don’t even know. In the romance novels I’m familiar with – the novels I consider to follow the Standard Romance Novel Trajectory – the heroine meets the hero, knows immediately his mm-hmm is the only one her uh-huh will ever need/want, loses her virginity to him and never thinks about other men ever. But I keep coming across heroines who have all kinds of sex with all kinds of different dudes! Which on the one hand is awesome! But on the other hand, it totally sucks because inevitably there’s a guy who’s SO MUCH BETTER than the hero and I’m like, why can’t you just stay with him?! And she’s like, fuck you Cate you don’t control me! And then the romantic conclusion is ruined for me because I can’t forgive her for settling for the stupid hero when she could have had somebody decent. And, sure, maybe the nice sailor would have ended up as kind of weirdo, but he was nice! He was nice. The hero is going to be a giant tool, I just know it.
Anyhow, Lucy Goosey and the creeperific couple continue on to Monte Carlo, where they gamble ALL of their money away. Lucy Goosey is (supposedly) from a wealthy English family, but she acts like she’s never seen people spend money before. There’s a lot of gasping (from her) and eye-rolling (from me). After her chaperones have lost THEIR WHOLE FORTUNE OMFG they arrange for her to continue on to England with a handsome Russian count who’s been eyeballing her all evening, because THAT sounds like a good arrangement. Of course this is all conducted in Russian, but she’s pretty sure she can trust them with her safety. Then her creeper friends disappear in the middle of the night. Haha! Those scamps! So our girl finds herself on a train with the Count and since he doesn’t speak English and she doesn’t speak Russian, they have to speak the language of love. Or rather the language of “hot passion.” Actually, let’s call it the language of rape, because that’s what he does. (But you guys! He looks so sweet and gentle when he falls asleep afterward! Aww, romantical!) And then they discover that they both speak French and she scolds him for raping her (naughty Count!) and he sort of apologizes (they told him she was a low-class kind of girl! He never would have raped her if he thought she was a lady!) and they realize the creepers have totally Punk’d them both LIKE WHOA, but it doesn’t make a fat lot of difference to the Count because he’s bringing Lucy Goosey to Russia and he’s marrying her AND THAT’S FINAL.
He takes her back to Russia and keeps having sex with her and she’s all, this just isn’t GOOD!, and misses having sex that isn’t terrible, but the Count doesn’t seem to notice or care. Then he pretty much imprisons her in his big house, but she meets an American pianist at a party and gets a little googly-eyed over him, which pisses off the Count so he locks her in her room. But she gets out and runs away and heads for the American pianist’s hotel room, where the pianist’s penis makes an appearance and they have sex. Because OF COURSE. And then the Count finds them so they steal a carriage and run away and some revolutionaries help them get out of Russia and they board a ship for NYC. And guess who works on the ship? The sailor that she lost her virginity to, that she thought was dead! And guess what she immediately does? Has sex with him! OF COURSE SHE DOES! But then he’s like, we can’t be together, and she’s all, awww okay, and goes back to her pianist and his penis. And right before they get to NYC, the pianist is like, …oh, by the way I’m married. WHOOPS! Didn’t mention that!!! And Lucy Goosey is like, well you promised to take care of me and you’re damn well going to take care of me you douchebag! And he’s like, hey baby no big deal I’m getting a divorce and my wife doesn’t live in my house anymore! Except, WHOOPS! She totally does live in the house! So Lucy Goosey makes him give her a watch to pawn and she buys a ticket to Colorado and I’m REALLY HOPING that an aged Doctor Quinn Medicine Woman takes this girl under her wing and teaches her about the world, but alas…it is not to be.
On the train, this really nice man is all, you look like a lady with talents! Do you sing? Do you dance? And Lucy Goosey is all, I dance ballet! And then she SIGNS A CONTRACT to dance for this man because she hasn’t learned ANYTHING about trusting STRANGERS. And, WHOOPS! Now she’s a stripper! Well, actually, she refuses to join the can-can dancers at his seedy Colorado club, so the club manager rapes her and she becomes a waitress. And also she befriends this guy in the boardinghouse and he gives her a blanket for her birthday so she has sex with him. I mean, she SORT OF wants to, but mostly she’s like, hmm I don’t have feelings for him but he gave me this blanket so I guess I should? This will probably not get complicated at all? And then she sees the guy who the kidnappers from WAAAAAY back in the beginning of the book tried to give her to before she ran away and she puts on her Nancy Drew hat and tries to follow him home. And then she decides to leave her shitty job as a waitress and take another job as a waitress somewhere else. Of course this makes the guy who gave her the blanket who she is NOT having a complicated relationship with really mad, but he comes to visit her and they start to have sex, because he came all that way to visit her so why not, right? And RIGHT THEN the newly-divorced pianist shows up! And the two dudes get into a fist fight! And the pianist – who is totally not worried about jacking up his hands, NO BIG DEAL it’s only his career – beats the shit out of the other guy! And then he’s like, marry me! And she’s like, I don’t know? And he’s like, I’ll stay at the hotel until you say yes! AND THEN HER FATHER SHOWS UP and he’s like, you’ve been a naughty girl and we’re going home right now! And she’s like, you don’t control me daddy! And he’s like, YES I GODDAMN DO! So she runs away again and she goes to find that mystery guy, and guess what? GUESS WHAT? She has sex with him. Haha, just kidding, noooo, he’s her REAL father! And that’s why she was being kidnapped! To reunite with her REAL DAD! And instead of being pissed off because she was abducted from her home and no one told her the reason WHY, leading her to be used and abused and impoverished and screwed six ways from Sunday and RAPED TWICE, she was all happy and excited and overjoyed to meet him! And then the Real Dad gives the Fake Dad (who is DEFINITELY fake-dad because he’s GAY, what a completely necessary twist!!!!) major stinkeye until Fake Dad slinks away home to England and Real Dad is like, Lucy Goosey you should marry the pianist! And the pianist is like, let’s live in New York! And Lucy Goosey is like, but my real dad lives in Colorado! And Real Dad is like, I’M FILTHY RICH! I’ll buy you two houses!!!!
And then I threw up. The end.
So. I may possibly be taking a break from this, ah, free misfit romance novels. Not because they make me seethe with rage! No, no, not that! Just because…you know. Because.