Courting Catherine, by Nora Roberts (The Calhouns #1)

>> Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Uh-oh, I feel a Nora Roberts series reread blitz coming on! Seriously, since I had that talk with my friend I've been wanting to reread so many Nora series! I've already started the Night Tales and now I've also started the Calhoun Women series. The first book is Courting Catherine

STRICTLY BUSINESS

All hard-driving executive Trenton St. James III had on his mind was business-making the final arrangements to buy a run-down old mansion on the coast of Maine. He wasn't expecting any complications. And he definitely wasn't expecting anything like Catherine "C. C." Calhoun.

This feisty, independent-minded young woman bristled at the very thought of her family's most highly prized possession ending up as part of some faceless hotel chain. And she seemed to bristle at the very sight of Trenton St. James, too. But all that was going to have to change, because Trent not only wanted her home, he wanted her, too. And he wasn't a man who took no for an answer.    
Ho-hum. I really liked this one as the setup for the series, but the romance itself didn't work all that well. A B.

It's a bit funny how you can define the pairings in the entire series with a couple of words. Here it's the tomboy (automechanic, combative, always stained with grease) matched with the suave businessman. Next are the efficient businesswoman/laid back architect - free spirit / professor and mommy / cop.

Our tomboy, Catherine (or CC, as she likes to be called) wasn't a character I liked much. She came across as very judgemental and obnoxious at first. I really didn't get her indignation at Trent's offer to buy her house to turn it into a hotel. I mean, ok, if you don't want to sell say no. Where exactly is the offense? I just don't get her attitude, and it's one common to many romance heroines. Nora herself has quite a few.

Ok, CC gets a bit nicer as the book progresses, but then wham! "I love you", she says. "huh?" And the huh wasn't only Trent speaking, it was my reaction as well. I mean, they had been bickering since they'd met. One somewhat peaceful evening, an admision of the fact they desire each other and she's telling him "I'm in love with you"? It completely threw me out of the story.

As did the fact that she was a virgin. Not that I think there's anything wrong with someone being a virgin, but give me a good reason for it!

Ah, well.... The story was saved by the fact that Trent is a pretty decent guy, and by the overarching storyline. The whole thing about the hidden emeralds, and the project to turn The Towers into a hotel, and the relationship betweent the sisters and their aunt (and between the rest of the family and Trent), all that was excellent. I have to admit, if I didn't have the entire quartet (plus the extra afterthought book) ready to read, I'd be mad that I don't get so many threads tied up, but as it is, it's a nice way to join together the series.

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