Review: Wild Orchids by Karen Robards

April 10, 2011 at 9:09 pm 4 comments

Tropical setting? Check. Running woman? Check. Good story? ....

While browsing the Romance section of the Walmart book section–don’t give me that look we don’t have a bookstore in my smalltown–I came across this reissue of Karen RobardsWild Orchids.  The cover was nice.  Not great but catching enough that I was like, “Oh why not? Woman on the cover running for her life through a tropical background? Sure! Why not?” You know how they say never to judge a book by it’s cover?  Sometimes they are right.  See  the cover made the heroine seem like a sensible woman not a TSTL heroine.  My mistake.

Review

What can I say about this book? Firstly, it is utterly ridiculous. Quite terrible actually. I picked up Wild Orchids at Walmart looking for a quick weekend read, and I figured I could trust one of Robards’ books to be relatively enjoyable. Oh man was I wrong.

The premise? Teacher Lora Harding’s dream vacation to Mexico takes a horrible turn for the worse when a tall, dark, and muscular stranger commandeers her car at gunpoint, taking her hostage and forcing her into a world of danger. Max, our hard as nails hero, is cold, menacing, and aggressive. He threatens Lora with death, rape, and overall violence, and yet, our dear Lora finds herself oddly attracted to him. Can someone say Stockholm syndrome? Why yes, actually, Lora herself recognizes the symptoms, and yet despite the fact that Lora knows her attraction is wrong, she still falls in love with murderer Max, who underneath his tough-guy exterior apparently has a heart.

Could have fooled me when he tied her to a bed nude and threatened to rape her or what about that time he chillingly promises to kill her and a family with small children if she tries to escape? Yeah, Lora, he’s gotta heart of gold there. I mean what was Robards thinking? Rape. Not cool. Killing children? Not cool. A hero who seriously threatens both? Not cool at all. Of course Lora rationalizes that many men would have done much worse than threaten in that situation. Oddly enough that did not cut it for me. For some reason, I found the fact that our hero is not as bad as some heartless and violent criminals to be a great defense of his character. Real hero? He wouldn’t have even threatened to rape her. Thank you very much!

Add to all this, a female lead who has no commonsense panics at everything, is always screaming in fear, and is overall just Too Freakin Stupid to Live…Yeah. This book? One word. Terrible.

1 Star

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Stephanie  |  April 11, 2011 at 11:42 am

    Yikes…threats of rape and murdering children…yeah…how did you even finish the thing???

    Reply
    • 2. Lizzie Poteet  |  April 11, 2011 at 12:13 pm

      It was an exercise in determination. I kept thinking…”how is she going to fix this? How is she going to make this okay???” Turns out she wasn’t able to make it okay.

      Reply
      • 3. Stephanie  |  April 11, 2011 at 1:45 pm

        So, when you read books like this, do you feel like you wasted your time and money??

      • 4. Lizzie Poteet  |  April 11, 2011 at 3:39 pm

        Yes and no. While I wouldn’t recommend it, I never consider a book a waste of my time. Money? Yes. Time? No. Plus I got some nice rants out of it. Many coffees with friends going “can you believe this?!!” Also thankfully the pacing was quick, so while I had to stop and yell at the character every few pages, I was able to get through it within two days.

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