Sunday, October 7, 2012

Pop Tarts Book Club: Love Only Once Ch. 13-22

Reminder: This is book club, so there will be spoilers!

Highlights From Chapters 13-22

Jason, the oldest of the Malory's, shows up and approves of the marriage between Nicholas and Reggie.

They all go to a party, where in the garden Reggie and Nicholas get it on in the gazebo.

Charlotte and Edward Malory throw an engagement party, where Nicholas and Reggie fight (a common occurrence). Reggie and Nicholas go to a musical performance, where Tony also is. Everything goes to hell and Reggie ends up leaving with George Fowler. Which causes Tony to gloat to Nicholas.

Cut to a shady bar where a man and a boy are meeting with a shady sort to decide that if Nicholas leaves alone from the performance alone, the shady man is going to grab him. Per the request of a man in the other room (very mysterious).

Nicholas leaves the performance alone (as Reggie already left with George), gets grabbed, and then has the snot beat out of him by Hawke, a gentleman pirate that Nicholas beat years ago on the high seas.

After recovering from the beating (Reggie is told he is just ill), Nicholas tells Reggie she should break off the engagement, Reggie gets pissed that he still doesn't want to marry her nor seem to like her anymore.

They end up married, Nicholas takes Reggie to his home, where his mother lives, and drops her off. Reggie doesn't get along with Nicholas' mother (who we know isn't really his mother, even though Reggie doesn't know that yet), but they decide to just ignore each other.

Tony comes to visit and can tell that Reggie is really unhappy and also mentions that she seems to be gaining weight. She admits that she is pregnant, but hasn't told Nicholas, who she hasn't seen since the wedding. Tony tells Reggie that she should come back home, but she decides to stay.

Kel's Thoughts:

This was a bit of a rollercoaster section, no? We have sex, marriage, fighting, and isolation. Right now, I am not sure that I like Nicholas or Reggie. Reggie is still a bit bipolar in her dealings with Nicholas. She has known since the beginning that Nicholas did not want to marry her, but then I hurt that he really doesn't want to marry her. Nicholas, for his part, obviously likes Reggie, but instead of being nice to her, he turns into a third grader and is mean to her instead. These two are the epitome of "if you would just talk to each other, all these problems could be solved!"

I did, however, like the stuff with Hawke, gentleman pirate. Nothing is better than a good kidnapping and beating to make a novel more exciting. It is especially good if you have, like me, read other books in the series and know more about Hawke. And speaking of in the gazebo during a party? Kind of hot, though I actually found the entire scene a bit middling. I kept thinking someone (probably Tony) would find them and bad things would happen. But it all turned out fine. Except that Reggie got pregnant.

Speaking of...why won't she tell Nicholas? It isn't like he won't notice when she pops a kid out. There is absolutely no point to not telling him.

It may be that I have been reading other, really really good, romances along with this one, but I find Nicholas and Reggie annoying and the story to be dragging. This could all be taken care of with "Oh hey, btw, I'm a bastard" -- Nicholas. "Oh, ok. Well, I really don't care because...have you met my family?" -- Reggie. "Fair point, well made. I love you." -- Nicholas. See? Done. But now they are both going to be pissed at each other when they find out the respective secrets. They are making everything harder on each other and themselves!

Jen's Thoughts:

OK, so for the good thing first: PIRATES! I love pirates! And pirates that kick the crap out of Nicholas, who, let's face it, kind of deserves it.

Because Nicholas? Is kind of a dick. So it Reggie, come to think of it.

I kind of like the whole, "If you'd just FREAKING TALK TO EACH OTHER, this would ALL BE SOLVED," which is good because it's a pretty common romance trope. But I am a little lost as to Reggie's motivations. Nicholas, I get - he doesn't want to get married but he agreed to marry, so his honor doesn't let him break it off. Although, his honor doesn't stop him from deflowering her in the gazebo and then abandoning her immediately after their marriage. But, then again, I suspect it's less honor that keeps him from breaking it off, and more fear of Reggie's Uncle Tony, which is understandable.

However, when we found out that Reggie was pregnant, I could find literally no reason for her not to tell Nicholas. Since she insists on being married to him knowing that they are horrifically incompatible, she might as well give him a piece of information that will keep him from being a complete rat-bastard to her. And, what she doesn't know, of course, is that telling Nicholas that she's pregnant would have guaranteed that he marry her willingly, because he wouldn't want to have his own child be a bastard, because he's so ashamed of being a bastard.

I don't really mind the trajectory of this novel as much as Kel does - one of my all-time favorite novels is "Gone With the Wind," which has a lot of "JUST FREAKING TELL EACH OTHER THAT YOU LOVE EACH OTHER, YOU MORONS!" in it - but it does seem to be going a little slow. I can't even put my finger on why - every scene seems to have a purpose - but I'm just ready for some big revelation to come out somehow. In this next couple of chapters, Reggie needs to find out that Nicholas is a bastard or Nicholas needs to find out that Reggie is pregnant, or else I'm going to be frustrated!!! Also, they should stop acting like 10-year-olds. Just saying.

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