J.B. Hammock played by his own rules, and rule number one was never settle down. He treated his women well, but with a no-strings detachment they all accepted. But sweet Tellie Maddox hovered about like a gossamer butterfly, always trying to take care of him, always caring about him. It was enough to make a confirmed bachelor take drastic measures. Then Tellie lost part of her memory. She believed she was J.B.'s faithful sidekick. Even he couldn't be so heartless as to push Tellie aside, and so he played the role of friend...until friendship turned to something else, something so much deeper than a heartbreaker like J.B. ever intended. He was hooked. Then Tellie's memory returned.
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If you believe in emotional abuse this is the book for you. It is classic sick behavior. The author crafted the heroe to be unredeemable. He never took resposibility...it was her innocence and inexperience that forced him to be cruel and destructive to a vunerable, sad girl. There is no "they lived happily ever after" here. Pass this one by.
I disliked this for different reasons than others perhaps. I went in knowing that the hero was going to be a prize d-bag (he was). That's partially why I read it, that and the amnesia trope. Cheesy and overdone yes, but I enjoy it.
The narrator needs to stick to YA/teen books. She sounded about 13 and there was zero attempt at a Texas accent (which was probably for the best). She also did not attempt to give different voices to different characters. Therefore, unless there were dialogue tags, it was often difficult to tell who was speaking. However, any attempt at a male voice may have been intolerable, so that may have been for the best as well.
It's weird. I've always played it rather safe in my personal love life. I have a good instinct as to who will be a safe bet and who will likely cause trouble of varying sorts. I'm not saying I've never had to deal with jerky behavior, but NEVER to such an extent as you see in these books. In real life, I could never emotionally deal with all the drama. I like things to be peaceful, quiet, stable... I'm an introvert, people wear me out and these volatile heroes would make me homicidal. However, I've found I love to vicariously and safely live some drama through media.
First of all, thumbs up to the shout out to Serenity/Firefly. They weren't mentioned by name, but if you were a fan there was no mistaking the reference.
The hero was a dbag of massive proportions and I still can't buy his reasoning. He was OTT in the verbal abuse category, which isn't my dramatic cuppa. I prefer the more ruthless type of dbag who resorts to blackmail, trickery, and perhaps some cruel accusations in jealous rage - but never someone who is so heavy handed on the belittling. He was just plain mean and hurtful to a young woman 10+ years his junior for no good reason.
Anyway, the heroine is in an accident on rainy roads after an argument with the hero which shouldn't have been an argument at all. Tellie was only there to inform him of his sister's illness, but he blew up at her when she accidentally caught him with his latest bimbo, called her ugly and basically a pathetic loser and she never even gets to tell him about his sister. So, she gets amnesia as a result of the wreck. J.B. sees this as his opportunity to make nice before she remembers. Okay, I'm game. Problem is ...
Spoilers below: * * * * My favorite part of the amnesia trope is when the heroine remembers and is horrified at the hero and his betrayal/deception. She often freaks the heck out due to the emotional shock of it all. The h is left in a pretty tough situation trying to convince the heroine that what went on while she had amnesia was a reflection of his true feelings for her and he wanted a clean slate, etc. etc. while she rages at him and refuses to listen. We're cheated of that here. She remembers when he's out of town. She leaves and he doesn't see her again until he tracks her down weeks later with a proposal. By that time the main shock/volatility of the situation has been defused. He really has to do very little beyond buy her a cup of coffee, say he's sorry and was so horrible because he loved her all along, but was afraid of losing another woman he loved (lost first love trope) and therefore tried to push her away. Basically, I felt there was all this buildup to a real blowout and the hero being forced to really make a grand gesture/prove his love and it just fizzled. I felt cheated. Woe is me.