Sunday, 6 April 2008

Bens Wildflower by Carol Lynne

You Have Been Warned.

First. The hero, Ben, is a monster waiting to happen. Constantly professing his love then telling Kate to be ready to take him the minute he feels like whipping it out. Wherever and whenever. Second. I sorta know that some people really really do live lives similar to those portrayed in this story. God help them. Thirdly. This novel is so astoundingly awful that in the end I just gave up being disgusted and went along with the ride. I have to say. In a smack-down between Lover Unbound and Ben’s Wildflower, the latter wins through every time. At least it has a happy ending. A proper full stop.

Ben’s Wildflower has it all and it has absolutely nothing. I’ll start like this. Both the females have been repeatedly violently raped in the past. Off-story. But does it put them off sex? Do either of them ever contemplate for one micro-second to say no the sexual demands of their partners. No Way Jose! Kate and Jenny both love to get Down To It. On their knees, on their backs, with small and big toys, any which way at all and in both holes.

But then. Interspersed with all the quite affecting carnality are scenes of mind-numbingly boring domesticity. Which I skim read. Like I’m interested in how much food the hero eats. This is share-cropper love at it’s most profound. Kate’s pooch almost dies then makes a complete recovery. None of the plot makes sense. I personally felt that somewhere there should have been an orgy scene involving Kate, Jenny, Cree, Jake and Ben.

The story also involves a proper plot about how Kate is nastily victimised by the small-town bully. Who also happens to be supposedly the richest guy in town. Yet again we get a small-town revenge scene where Ben gets a woman who has been disrespectful to Kate, fired. Oh and nicknames. Kate is Ben’s Wildflower. I’m inclined to call her Ben’s simple-minded slut. Unfortunately. According to the plot. Ben is Kate’s only lover apart from her rapist. At some point in the novel, the main couple make a conscious decision not to call their nemesis by his given name, Clint. So instead. For about half of the entire novel they refer to Clint as ‘the little fucker.’ So bizarre.

I absolutely could not empathise with Kate. Through any of her terrible troubles. Why was that? She relied totally on Ben for the resolution of all her problems. Yet she wasn’t any kind of doormat at all. I know for sure Ben will soon turn into massive spousal abuser. All the signs are there. Including his cloying declarations of love to Kate. On the other hand. Maybe not.

For the stout-hearted only. But having said all that. Just today I read a spoiler for Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult. Believe me. It's plot is even more ridiculous. And more offensive.

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