Early Linda Howard Silhouette that didn't wear well for me.
I don't think I'd read this one back in the day. Many of LH's old silhouettes actually do hold up well, I can go back and re-read Mackenzie's Mountain, for instance, and enjoy it as much as when I first read it.
This one, though, doesn't work as well for me. It actually starts out quite well with dark, brooding anti-hero and black sheep of the family Cord Blackstone (doesn't that name just reek
throbbing manliness?) shows up at a party and manages to all but seduce lovely widow Susan Blackstone on the dance floor.
The Blackstones are a Family to Be Reckoned With in New Orleans Society. They own a Corporation that, well, I am not exactly sure what the Corporation does but it makes them all rich and they have lots of people with jobs depending on them. But Cord was shunned from the family for having an affair with a married woman. Now he's back, bitter and ready to exact some revenge.
Susan and he are really hot for each other. The other Blackstones (the mean ones that ousted him from the family) want Susan to use that attraction to glean whatever information she can about his obviously revenge-laden plans.
But Susan in the ultimate good girl. She gets that Cord is just lonely and misunderstood and won't side with the family against him and won't side with him against the family. Even after they get it on and have amazing sex. She is just caught in the middle.
I know that it was required for heroes back in the mid 80s to be all Alpha Jerky and stuff, but Cord takes that to the next level and pretty much just gets his sex on with Susan while she's all busy saying how much she loves him. He treats her badly, the family treats her badly and she allows herself to be treated badly. This is what annoyed me the most about this book. Susan was not only a victim, she was worse. She was a martyr. A suffering, noble, losing weight because she is trying to make everyone happy, wan eyed martyr. I wish just once she'd have said "Fuck you and kiss my [insert aggressively described skin color here] ass!" to both Cord and the rest of the family.
Not LH's best effort.