Read Valentina by Fern Michaels Free Online
Book Title: Valentina|
The author of the book: Fern Michaels
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 1366 times
Reader ratings: 4.9
Edition: Severn House Publishers
Date of issue: April 1st 1998
ISBN 13: 9780727853318
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 358 KB
Read full description of the books:
If there's one thing I've learned since reading bodice rippers, it's that if you expect a serious and impeccably realistic historical romance from Fern Michaels, you're an idiot.
Granted, I've only read this one and Captive Passions (henceforth CP) to base this on, but I feel pretty confident declaring such.
That said, after a WTF start in Valentina with rape, whipping, and lesbian molestation and resultant phobia, it did become a rather staid little historical with a beleaguered heroine very reminiscent of some of Bertrice Small's early heroines. The overall quality wasn't up to par with Small, nor did the characters really stick with me, but it was a solid romance that has a very dynamic love triangle that hinges on one's loyalty vs. another's treason.
Valentina is a childhood friend and current lady-in-waiting to Berengaria of Navarre, lusty and frustrated wife to that closet-case of legend King Richard the Lionheart. To satisfy her yearnings, Berengaria's taken on scores of lovers and even dabbles with a lady or two, including making some not-so-subtle moves on Valentina. While in Acre on crusade, things get tense when she catches one of her new lovers - Paxon, the Saracen Sultan of Jakard - macking on Valentina while en route to her queenly bower. That's where the whipping comes in and the queen has a slight reaction:
Valentina's body convulsed with pain. Her knees buckled and she hung heavily by her wrists from the sconce. The snakelike length licked through the air once again, slicing into Valentina's tender flesh. Still she was silent; no outcry escaped her. Berengaria was leaning against a chair back for support. Her breathing was steady and rapid, her hips swaying slightly with an internal rhythm....
Berengaria was gripping the chair back, her knuckles shining whitely in the gray dusk. Shudder after shudder coursed through her as she sank, breathless, to her knees.
This sexual jealousy doesn't stop with a mere whipping, and Berengaria plots to dispose of our heroine further. Fern's villainesses are bad to the bone, but Berengaria makes Gretchen in CP look like Strawberry Shortcake. Your garden variety bad girl wouldn't manipulate her husband into war criminal territory simply to dispose of a pesky rival, but Berengaria has no qualms suggesting to Richard that 2700 Saracen prisoners should be beheaded to show his strength, and she connives to have Valentina put in the middle of the wretched group. Quite an elaborate ploy, hmm? (Points to Fern for giving that decision of Richard's a rather creative genesis.)
Well, like all plots of Bond villain proportions, it fails and our heroine naturally escapes, only to find herself in Saladin's camp and tended by a cagey heart-of-gold whore. Our heroine's woes aren't over yet, as she gets some sudden visits via both the front and back entrances (if you get my meaning) and she's shuffled off to the auction block when Saladin needs to lighten his army's excess baggage and people. But is this the end for Valentina? What further degradations will she have to suffer?
Umm, not all that many. The WTFery has shot its load and it's on a somewhat even keel in that department from here on out.
This Fern femme really is a cat who lands on her feet. She gets a good gig with a doddering old emir and has unbelievable good luck at hoodwinking people in her schemes. She maneuvers the touchy political ground with iron hands in velvet gloves, and does what she can to stay alive while surrounded by the enemy.
Valentina also finds her wounded little heart torn in several directions: she's finally shown the gentler side of love by rock star du jour Saladin, her body is revved by Paxon (who has trust issues with "the enemy" but can't cure himself of wanting her), and her soul soars with Paxon's half-brother Menghis, a man destined to be a neutral power player up on a mountain somewhere with his body enslaved in a psychic trance commanding a personal army of freelancers until he dies.
Yeah, your Earth logic is so cute. Leave it at the door. It's not wanted here.
While I didn't exactly enjoy this one as much as CP because it lacked the cheeseball je ne sais quoi, I felt more tied to the romance. Regan and Sirena in CP were pretty unrealistic - he was an unrepentant horndog and she was a total cartoon character - but Valentina does have a more solid personality and her conflict between the two brothers was rooted in issues of what constitutes treason and loyalty, and what one's humanity is worth in the gristmill of war. It wasn't exactly staggering or brilliant in execution, but it was done well enough so that I could see the good of Valentina having her HEA with either of the men. I wouldn't call it a book with two heroes, but it provided a love triangle - a device that I really like, even if here it tended to make the story lose focus now and then.
I've read better, of course, but there was enough here to keep me interested and curious just how it would all turn out.
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Read information about the authorFern Michaels isn’t a person. I’m not sure she’s an entity either since an entity is something with separate existence. Fern Michaels® is what I DO. Me, Mary Ruth Kuczkir. Growing up in Hastings, Pennsylvania, I was called Ruth. I became Mary when I entered the business world where first names were the order of the day. To this day, family and friends call me Dink, a name my father gave me when I was born because according to him I was ‘a dinky little thing’ weighing in at four and a half pounds. However, I answer to Fern since people are more comfortable with a name they can pronounce.
As they say, the past is prologue. I grew up, got a job, got married, had five kids. When my youngest went off to Kindergarten, my husband told me to get off my ass and get a job. Those were his exact words. I didn’t know how to do anything except be a wife and mother. I was also a voracious reader having cut my teeth on The Bobbsey Twins, Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, Cherry Ames and the like. The library was a magical place for me. It still is to this day. Rather than face the outside world with no skills, I decided to write a book. For some reason that didn’t intimidate me. As my husband said at the time, stupid is as stupid does. Guess what, I don’t have that husband any more. Guess what else! I wrote 99 books, most of them New York Times Best Sellers.
Moving right along here . . . Several years ago I left Ballantine Books, parted company with my agent, sold my house in New Jersey that I had lived in all my married life and in 1993 moved to South Carolina. I figured if I was going to go through trauma let it be all at one time. It was a breeze. The kids were all on their own at that point. The dump was a 300 year old plantation house that is listed in the National Registry that I remodeled. Today it is beyond belief as are the gardens and the equally old Angel Oaks that drip Spanish moss. Unfortunately, I could not get my ghost to relocate. This ghost has been documented by previous owners. Mary Margaret as we call her, is “a friendly”. She is also mischievous. It took me two weeks to figure out that she didn’t like my coffee cups. They would slide off the table or counter or else they’d break in the dishwasher. I bought red checkered ones. All are intact as of this writing. She moves pillows from one room to the other and she stops all the clocks in the house at 9:10 in the a.m. at least once a week. When the Azaleas are in bloom, and only then, I find blooms on my night stand. I have this glorious front porch and during the warm months I see my swing moving early in the morning when the air is still and again late in the day. She doesn’t spook the dogs. I always know when she’s around because the five of them line up and look like they’re at a tennis match. As of this writing we’re co-habiting nicely.
Most writers love what they do and I’m no exception. I love it when I get a germ of an idea and get it down on paper. I love breathing life into my characters. I love writing about women who persevere and prevail because that’s what I had to do to get to this point in time. It’s another way of saying it doesn’t matter where you’ve been, what matters is where you’re going and how you get there. The day I finally prevailed was the day I was inducted into the New Jersey Literary Hall of Fame. For me it was an awesome day and there are no words to describe it.
I’ve been telling stories and scribbling for 37 years. I hope I can continue for another 37 years. It wasn’t easy during some of those years. As I said, I had to persevere. My old Polish grandmother said something to me when I was little that I never forgot. She said when God is good to you, you have to give back. For a while I didn’t know how to do that. When I finally figured it out I set up The Fern Michaels® Foundation.
READ FERN MICHAELS' FULL BIOGRAPHY HERE: http://www.fernmichaels.com/biography/
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