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Thursday, September 24, 2015

Love the Bright Foreigner - Book Review

 The story starts off alright. Ann Grange is suddenly widowed and her whole world falls apart.

After a year of grieving, and with the help of a friend, she returns to the land of the living and does so with determination. She opts for a new hairdo, new makeup and new clothes.

Thanks to her new look comes a new found confidence. A confidence that makes her an independent woman, rather than the pathetic sidekick she was when her husband was alive.

In a museum she meets Alex, a Greek, who sweeps her off her feet.

If Burgh wanted to sketch Alex as appealing, she failed horribly. Right from that first meeting, it’s clear that Alex is an asshole. It’s his way or the highway. Still, Ann (who he insists on calling Anna) falls for his charms hook, line and sinker.

A whirlwind romance follows, during which Alex reveals himself as not only an asshole, but an asshole with a temper.

At this point I started to wonder what Ann sees in him. He’s self-centered, super arrogant, flies off the handle when he encounters resistance, and unreasonably possessive.

To be fair to him, he knows that he’s an asshole, that he’s self-centered, arrogant, and possessive. And while he’s insanely jealous, he admits that she doesn’t have to expect fidelity from him. He will continue to sleep around if it suits him.

Once again I started to wonder just how tolerant Ann is. What woman would agree to have her man on the loose like a dog in heat, while he practically has her on a leash?

I also wondered if his money had anything to do with it. She states that money is not important, but Ann went from being rich to being VERY rich. Would she have felt the same if her beloved was a bank teller, an accountant or an insurance salesman with an average salary?

The story went horribly wrong about halfway in the book where Burch makes a colossal mistake. 
When Ann complains to her 27-year-old daughter Fay that Alex is too dominating, Fay boldly states that all women secretly want to be dominated.

Really? All women want to be dominated? This certainly was news to me. I for one most certainly do not want to be dominated and I know quite a few women who feel the same.

Very strange for Fay to make such a statement, as she is a successful business woman herself. Makes you wonder if a dominating male had to say to her “Quit your career and stay home to clean my house, cook my meals and polish my shoes” how such an order would have been greeted.

Next big surprise, after the wedding, Ann finds herself pregnant. This was really the straw that broke the camel’s back. This woman is in her 40s, her twin children are 27 and now she’s expecting a baby! Has the woman ever heard of birth control? At her age it’s just plain stupid to get knocked up.

All in all, a disappointing book. It made me wonder where the Anita Burgh was who defended women’s rights and gay rights in “The Broken Gate” and “The Heart’s Citadel”. Since her book “Lottery” was also a disappointment, I’ll think twice before buying another book from Burgh.

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