Even for 1979, the views of this book were old school. Davina Mawne owned and worked in a flower shop with her younger sister. They spent the days talking about men and the possibility of marriage, the hopes and dreams that did not really move beyond flower arranging. Davina had high hopes that her sister would get married and have a wonderful life with children and a loving husband.
“Davina wasn’t free to marry anyone
After the death of their parents, Davina Mawne was sole provider for her young sister and brother. It took long hours of hard work, but Davina was proud of her success in keeping her family together.
She had little spare time for a social life and none at all for romance. Then she met handsome, charming Nick Tabor, who was quite determined to marry her.
It should have been the answer to all her problems. Instead, it seemed only to add to them…”
How about this..
Christian Gray ~VS~ Nick Tabor
CG- I have a lot of money.
NT- I also have a lot of money. The difference, punk, is that I made my money. You, probably inherited.
CG- I do not want to date a virgin. Ever.
NT- I would never intentionally date anyone who was not a virgin. I want to be the only man they will ever have.
CG- I look for easy targets, like employees.
NT- I look for easy targets, like shop girls.
CG- A contract is needed before I begin my seduction.
NT- A contract? Are you kidding? I thought you were an Alpha Male, you puss.
CG- I am not a puss, am I, Mistress D. Sandoval ?
NT- Rolls his eyes. You need to have the upper hand. She needs to be shown who is boss.
CG- She needs to sign the contract. Did she sign the contract, yet?
NT- Find her at a party, and pull her into an empty room and take advantage of her.
CG- She has not signed the contract.
NT- The best way to look like a good guy is to take care of her when she is sick. She is vulnerable. That is the best time to establish yourself as the man in the house.
CG- I don’t like cooties. She can take care of herself. If she signs the contract , then I might bring her some water, and hold off her mediation until she does what I want her to do, but I will be in a full germ suit.
NT- After you take care of her and prove that she needs you to handle all her problems because she is too incapable, you swoop in and ask her/demand that she marry you.
CG- She must first see a doctor and make sure she is fully loaded with birth control and she is healthy before I even offer any contract. Marriage is out of the question.
NT- She must be willing to have lots of children with me. I must establish that I am a virile man.
CG- Kids are gross. They will not sign contracts, and without one, I am not at all sure what to do with them. Maybe Mistress D. Sandoval knows what I should do. I take all my problems to her.
NT-You are a putz.
CG- You are an asshole.
Both men shake hands, and wink knowingly at each other and then they suit up and go play racquetball together.
I think there is no winner in this debate, but Nick might have come out a little on top, but only to prove he is a more Alpha of the alpha males. I do hope he looses the blue suit, but then again, it goes very well with the pink and red that Davina wears. Maybe Nick will send Mistress D. Sandoval some flowers.
Values and dreams have changed in books. Especially romance books. This book was published in 1979, after women’s lib had come about, but maybe that is why they owned and ran a flower shop. Before then, I suppose they would have just helped, or maybe they would have been shop girls that had a boss who was the hero of the story.
When you read old school Harlequin Romances, there are a few things you need to let slide. They are written from a different prospective and maybe should not be judged the same way that a newer Romance is. This seems predominate in Romance, where as other books, especially dime store type books get away with it. Women have changed drastically since books like this one graced the marketplace shelf. If you published this book in today’s market, boy, the backlash would be incredible.
Old School detective and western novels are harsh on women.The dime store types have the overbearing alpha male telling any woman within spitting distance, “my way or the highway”. I love these little stories because they are fun to read, and they make me laugh. But unlike literary works, these little tidbits of American tripe are not going to make it back into print anytime soon, or not at all. Because they are not politically correct. I never wanted politics in my soup, and I still don’t. So I collect these. All of them. It is possible the dime store dics and the westerns will make it through to ebooks, because women generally do not read these, and either do most of the PC public that might be offended. But romance, women will pick up and read, and we love to complain about the injustice of things.
Nick Tabor started sniffing around Davina’s flower shop, probably the moment he saw the loan go through. He was handsome,rich and he loved his reflection. He smelled “easy target” on Davina the moment he walked into the cute little girlesque shop. What a perfect place for a woman to work, he thought! Flower arranging. Now that is a job ladies must dig.
Nick is an alpha male. Women love alpha dom men. But, women like them to still respect and not act like alpha dom men, unless writers can justify the behavior by making it a 50 shades thing. Nick could totally get into the new 50 shades craze. He would be perfect for it.
He decides to make Davina his woman. It really does not matter that Davina does not want a boyfriend. That is just not acceptable. And this works,in stories like this, unless the guy is not at all good looking, then, it is just stalker and rapist mentality. But, he is wealthy and good looking and that is a perfect combo. He goes overboard at a party, and pulls her into a room and attacks/kisses/mauls her. She is forced to consider Nick as a suitor, well, because! that is why! He comes off more of an arrogant cad in a bad pirate romance.
From that point forward , I think Nick assumes he has marked his territory, and moves in for the kill when Davina becomes ill. Tonsillitis… humm…. Conveniently so does her sister. She is stuck at home/shop when it happens, Nick sees she is sick and takes over her shop for her and nurses her back to health.
It is over for Davina. She has to accept Nick as her one and only, because he says so, and the story goes on till the end with her accepting that well, Nick is going to marry her, and she better be happy with that decision he has made for her, because for now on, all decisions must go through Nick. She is after all, the weaker sex. To me, Again, 50 shade mentality, just put into an older school situation without all the perks like multiple orgasms and man feelings thrown in. It is still the same staple. Just without the colorful metallic flake.
I think for the most part, the views of these women, and of this man are not wrong, it is just completely different than you would see in a romance of today. If Nick would have tried that crap on me at the party, I think he would have gotten a knee to the groin.
Here is another reviewers take on the story, which his pretty spot on: by LLCSpokane:
“This one would be fairly good if the alpha H could learn the word compromise/negotiate. He expected the h to accede to his dictates on all important issues. The h was strong and independent. She’d had to be after taking over the care of her younger brother and sister when their parents died. The H expects to take over all of her responsibilities whether she wants him to or not. It would have been ok if he had given way a little by the end but he didn’t, she just rolled over and accepted.”
I could not have said it better. P.S. I had a heck of a lot of fun looking up the covers for the old dime store books.