Monday, January 11, 2010
Review: He Came Upon A Midnight Clear
Title: He Came Upon A Midnight Clear
Author: Cat Johnson
Genre: Contemporary romance
My rating (Max 10): 1.0
This is the first truly uninspired work I have read. It was a novella and therefore short, but I still had to force myself to finish it.
The narrative takes place at a mountain home that our heroine was house-sitting. She is avoiding a trip down the mountain to visit her parents for Christmas dinner. She doesn't answer her phone, nor respond to her answering machine messages. Ginny, the heroine, instead turns on her TV to watch a self-help show. The show encourages her to make a list of things she can do to change her isolation and loneliness.
The stage is now set for the most predictible, cliche story I've ever read. First comes the blackout. Then comes the loud noise from outside, an unsecured barn door, requiring Ginny to go outside and bolt it. Outside, in front of the barn, a very handsome, totally buff man, is semi-conscious, wet, half frozen, and suffering from, you guessed it, amnesia. More obvious stuff to come; Ginny has to bring him in, he has to shed his clothes, he needs her body's warmth because there is no heat and she can't figure out how to make a decent fire in the fireplace (she's obviously not a member of Mensa). One thing leads to another…
Next morning. the mysterious stranger has disappeared without a trace, making our heroine think she's had one super sexy dream. Our previously writer's-blocked author pens a book, which becomes a best seller immediately even though she is a first-time author with absolutely no name recognition, about that night. She has an epiphany and she now wants to be with her family. Pass a few completely insignificant pages and our heroine is within minutes of leaving the house she's been in for a year as the owners are momentarily returning. When who should drive up but mister-tall-dark-and-handsome who has regained his memory and kept the memory of their stolen night together and now wants to steal her away.
The pièce de résistance was the importance of their names. She was Ginny as in Virginia, as in "Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus." His name? Yep, minus the saint, his name was Nick.
Unless you're really bored and there is not another available piece of written fiction available, save yourself, pass this one by…unless you want to read quintessential example of a poorly written, uninspired, and uncreative romance.
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