Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Giveaway and Review: "Never a Gentleman"

As part of the "Never a Gentleman" blog tour, I have my review and a giveaway of 3 copies of the book, sponsored by Hachette!

"Never a Gentleman"
 by Eileen Dreyer

Publisher: Forever
Release Date: April 1, 2011

Source: sent by publisher

My Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Summary from goodreads.com:
HE HIDES HIS TRUE COLORS . . . Miss Grace Fairchild is under no illusions about her charms. Painfully plain, she is a soldier's daughter who has spent her life being useful, not learning the treacherous ways of the ton. She may have been caught in a scandal with society's favorite rogue, but how can she marry him when it means losing herself?
Diccan Hilliard doesn't know which of his enemies drugged him and dumped him in Grace's bed, but he does know the outcome. He and Grace must marry. To his surprise, a wild, heady passion flares between them. Yet Diccan is trapped in a deadly game of intrigue Grace knows nothing about. Will his lies destroy Grace just as he realizes how desperately he needs her? And how can he hope for a future with her, when an old enemy has set his murderous sights on them both?

My Review: 

It really bothers me to give this book such a low rating, but this kind of book isn't my style. I've seen many fantastic reviews of this book, I think it's one of those books that you either absolutely love or hate. Possibly the problem for me was that it was packaged as a mainstream historical romance. When I pick up a book like this, I want to read about two characters who love and respect each other. I also don't want to worry about disturbing bedroom scenes. This book broke both of those rules.

(slight spoiler ahead)

I read Dreyer's previous book, "Barely a Lady" and there was a red flag for me in that book because the hero gushed about romantic feelings towards his mistress. But I liked her dramatic writing style, so I decided to give this book a chance. But this book takes the mistress storyline to whole new level.

I was trying to give the mistress storyline a chance because I knew Diccan was being blackmailed into it. But then "the scene" happened, followed by how readily and eagerly Grace accepted it. When the characters have lost respect for themselves, then I lose respect for the story. I pretty much checked out of the book at that point. It was so far from anything I would want to read.

(end spoiler)

Grace was such a sad character with no self esteem, and she didn't make progress towards building her self worth. I have no problems with characters who are at a bad place in their lives or who have low self esteem, but they gain more self worth as the story goes on. These stories are inspiring to me. But Grace was painful to read about. For instance, in one scene, all Diccan did was enter the room and look at her. The thoughts that went through her head were along the lines of 'why does he hate me?' 'I can tell he hates my dress' and 'He thinks I'm so ugly.' (these are not exact quotes, they are what I remember). She got all of this from one look. I would sure hate to live inside her mind. How she reacts to "the scene" only reinforces how little she loves herself, and I hate to see women having to read about this. As a woman, I want to read about women being strong, or learning to be strong, and not blindly 'putting up with' and embracing a man who treats them terribly.

Main Characters: 1/5
Supporting Characters: 3/5

Setting: 3/5

Romance: 1/5

Uniqueness: 4/5
Cover: 5/5
Writing: 3/5

Bottom Line: I hate giving negative reviews, but that's how strongly I felt about this book. I have seen fantastic reviews of this, so I know some people are loving it, and I'm glad they are able to see it from a different place than I can. I just have a problem with the lack of love and respect that the characters have for each other and for themselves, as well as the poor attitude towards women.


Hachette books has generously provided three copies of this historical romance for readers of my blog!

All you have to do is follow my blog publicly and leave a comment on this review with your email address!Please follow publicly or I can't tell that you are following :) Also, if you aren't comfortable leaving your email here, go ahead and leave a comment and then send me an email with your email addy
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  • Ends Tues May 3
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