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What a Scoundrel Wants by Carrie Lofty

What a Scoundrel Wants

by Carrie Lofty

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The ladies at smartbitchestrashybooks.com have never steered me wrong before, in terms of recommending romance novels, but I am stumped trying to figure out why someone who loves Loretta Chase would also like this. The heroine is a manipulative amoral pyromaniac; the hero is fairly cardboard but likeable enough until he decides, out of the clear blue sky and for no reason I could see, that he's in love with this woman. Their interactions have consisted mainly of her betraying him four or five times; perhaps six times would have been the deal-breaker (or proof of an even greater love, if that's what turns him on). I suppose it's a twist on the usual romance novel to have the hero be the one saying, "No, I can change this incredibly selfish person!", but I haven't any interest in that kind of love story regardless of which gender takes which role.

Also, both hero and heroine keep sustaining fairly horrific wounds, which never cause anyone any worry or permanent damage, and given the statistics on infection and mortality in that time period, this got beyond ridiculous. At one point the hero shatters (direct quote) several bones in his thumb, and is like, "Yeah, whatever, I'll put a splint on it in a couple days, it'll be fine," and then it IS fine. While I'm over here saying, "It's the year 1199 and you live in the woods: that sh*t is not going to be fine." It's not a good sign when you find yourself actively hoping for the appearance of gangrene in your romance novel.

(Gotta give Lofty credit for not taking the easy way: her next novel is apparently about this heroine's sister, who is an opium addict and even more shamelessly manipulative in the pursuit of what she wants. I don't want Mary Sue heroines, but there is a middle ground between "interestingly flawed" and "totally unlikeable".)
4 vote atheist_goat | Feb 12, 2009 |
If you're a BIG fan of tales of Robin Hood, you will probably enjoy "What a Scoundrel Wants" by Carrie Lofty. This book is based on the character of Will Scarlet from Robin Hood's band. If you're not a fan, the myriad threads and required foreknowledge will likely leave you hanging. ( )
  jjmachshev | Nov 29, 2008 |
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Will you hear a tale of Robin Hood,
Will Scarlet, and Little John?
Now listen awhile, it will make you smile,
As before it hath many a one.
"Robin Hood and the Peddlers"
Folk ballad, nineteenth century
To Keven
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Will Scarlett hated trees.
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