Wannabe Martha

Still trying to figure out which Martha

Is He a Dreamboat?

on September 18, 2014

Over at AAR is an interesting column about Max DeWinter (He of Rebecca fame) and whether he’s a D-bag (I abbreviate because I actually hate that expression) or Dreamboat (OK – that just cracks me up).

For a time I was quite the DuMaurier junkie (right after the first time I saw Rebecca), but I haven’t thought about her writings in a long while.  I think a re-read of the novel is in order, as there may be too much of the movie rattling around in my mind to be able to come to clear opinion on the matter.  Anyway, if you’re looking for a little something different to consider, hop over there and join in the discussion – some of the comments are quite interesting.  I may just write a little more on this after I read the book again.  Sometimes a re-read results in an entirely different appreciation, and after reading the article, I’m wondering just if my thoughts about him will change.

Oh and that reminds me – I just downloaded The Woman in White – can you believe I haven’t read it?  I remember my mother telling me that she read it while my Dad was on a business trip when we lived in Finland.  My brothers and I were really little at the time and she was so creeped out  she could only read it locked the bathroom!  I think that sounds like my kind of book.

Lest there be any question about it, Laurence Olivier IS Max DeWinter (just like Daniel Craig IS James Bond).


22 responses to “Is He a Dreamboat?

  1. Elspeth says:

    Okay, I’m going to comment because yours is one of the few places I’m reading right now, mainly because your posts are light-hearted and funny.

    This cracked me up, Maeve. Romance novels are something I try to avoid for a whole host of reasons I’ll not get into here.

    But I’m currently reading through Sharon Kay Penman’ Welsh prince trilog. Full of war, and political intrigue. Not to mention her history is pretty spot on. I went and checked it. But there is also some romance. The first book has scenes that are just downright racy, LOL.

    So as I finished the first one I asked myself, “Does this book [Here Be Dragons] qualify as a romance novel?” I decided that it did not, and went on to the second book, which is at the halfway point more war and political intrigue than romance. Something tells me Ms. Penman had a special affinity for Llewellyn the Great given how little sex there is now that he has died off the scene, LOL.

    All that rambling to ask a question: Do you agree with the idea that romance novels are to women what porn is to men?

    • Maeve says:

      Elspeth, I’m totally against the notion that romance = chick porn.

      For one thing, the gamut of the genre is huge and runs from the saccharine sweet to the, well, OK I’d call it porn, but that’s just me.

      You know, I think I’d do better with a post on why “romance novels aren’t bad for you and really can be a lot of fun and no harm done.”

      If I think of the greatest works I’ve ever read, they all incorporated some elements of romance (even if not actual romances, themselves) and I believe that’s because it’s relationships that make the most compelling stories.

      My timer’s going off and if I don’t pay attention to this cake, there’ll be much anguish here, but I’ll get back to the discussion because it’s a good one and worth having.

      Oh and you MUST read The Sunne in Splendour. Just wonderful!

      • Elspeth says:

        Oh and you MUST read The Sunne in Splendour. Just wonderful!

        It was also written by Sharon Kay Penman, correct? I plan to get to it after I finish the trilogy.

      • Maeve says:

        Elspeth, yes – it’s also by Penman and is the story of Edward IV and Richard III – absolutely wonderful. Also a fantastic read is The Greatest Knight, by Elizabeth Chadwick, which is about William Marshal; the follow-up to that is The Scarlet Lion. It pretty much covers the Henry II through John and it’s fascinating reading.

        Oh – and my BFF’s favorite author is Ken Follett and she turned me on to The Pillars of The Earth, which was just outstanding – right up there with Penman. I think you’d really like it (and the sequel World Without End).

        You know, I could talk books all day long. 🙂

      • hearthie says:

        I got annoyed with Dragons when Joanna fell off the wagon near the end of the book, clicked over to something else and haven’t gone back.

  2. Elspeth says:

    Daniel Craig IS James Bond

    Oh yeah. I totally agree. Totally.

  3. Mrs. C says:

    Maeve,

    I’m intrigued. I’ve never heard of these novels or authors which you’ve mentioned here. I read the first page or so of The Woman in White and I think I’m hooked already.

    “…I believe that’s because it’s relationships that make the most compelling stories.”

    Loved that and I agree!

    • Maeve says:

      Mrs. C., Sharon K Penman writes some outstanding historical fiction; you can’t go wrong with anything she’s published.

      I now have three books I’m reading simultaneously LOL

      • Mrs. C says:

        Thank you for the recommendation.

        “Three books simultaneously” Isn’t that the best when that happens? I’m envious.

  4. hearthie says:

    Some romance novels are poorly written dreck, regardless of how pornographic they get. Some books in other genres can be just as pornographic. Sometimes really well written books are pornographic, which ticks me off – I gave up my Jacqueline Carey novels because of the porn level (and because they make me emo) but dang they’re well-written.

    It’s hard to find any modern novels without any sex… sigh.

    • Maeve says:

      LOL Hearthie, just as unforgiveable as drek is the pretentious boring stuff – you know, those “very important novels” that “must be read”. I have a really low threshold for tedious.

      Sometimes the sex does feel gratuitous – other times, I’m not bothered by it (also I’ve been known to skip over it LOL)

      Sharon Shinn writes some very interesting novels. I love Summers at Auburn Castle (which actually handles themes of slavery with an extremely deft hand), and also I’ve really liked her Samaria series – they’re thought provoking and entertaining.

      One book I read last year that just really moved me to pieces was Iscariot by Tosca Lee – it’s sort of haunted me, frankly. And I cried like a baby at the end.

      My TBR pile just keeps growing by leaps and bounds and there’s just not enough time to read them all – how fortunate I am to have that for a problem. 🙂

      • hearthie says:

        Yes, I’ve read enough “books you’re supposed to read” for a lifetime. My last foray was reading Anna Karenina a couple of years back. Started with a friend, but she gave up while I slogged through. My dad insists the horse-racing scene is some of the finest prose in the last 150 years, but.. well, yeah. :p I’d keep it around to read bits of (okay, some of the prose is amazing) but GAH.

        And why are most women’s important novels about adultery or rape? Boooooring.

        I could do with some well-written novels with a good brisk plot, no adultery (or at least not as a major theme) that had happy endings. Is that too much to ask? :p Apparently.

  5. Mrs. C says:

    “(also I’ve been known to skip over it LOL)”

    Ack! I wondered if I was the only one who did that! Sometimes it’s enough to just know they did. I don’t need the play-by-play…..LOL

  6. Elspeth says:

    I got annoyed with Dragons when Joanna fell off the wagon near the end of the book

    “Fell off the wagon”, LOL. I guess that’s one way to put it. It was that whole episode of Prince Llewellyn eventually taking her back rather than divorcing here which inspired me to dig a bit into history. I realize that the book is a novel, which means the author takes wide liberties, but that was too much suspension of reality for me. That a prince would reconcile with a wife after finding her with another man was just more than I could take. I man really. That was the 13th century. Penman was asking too much of the reader. I was ready to give up on it at that point.

    As it turned out, Llewellyn the Great did indeed take his wife back and restore her as his princess. Now whether it was because of a passionate love as Penman paints, I don’t know. But that was enough for me to stick through to the end.

    And they are very well written books.

    • Maeve says:

      You know Elspeth, I’ve read a ton of historical fiction – lots of it medieval and I know a lot of the history(because I wanted to be a medievalist), but there have been some times that I was just so sure the author was so good that she was going to be able to change history.

      I’m saying it wrong. He (or she) would have me wanting the outcome to be different so badly that I almost couldn’t stand to keep going on – I’d get so engaged with the characters, even knowing what was going to happen that I’d keep thinking – “well, maybe it really will turn out OK”. For instance, one of my first forays was The Queen’s Confession, by Victoria Holt, a fictionalized autobiography of France’s Marie Antoinette. We all know the facts. But even up to the end, I just somehow kept thinking it was going to end differently.

  7. FuzzieWuzzie says:

    Maeve,
    All this discussion about romance as chick porn. I need your opinion. Would this qualify as bear porn?

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