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High Noon by Nora Roberts--a great read...
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Trisha



Joined: 13 Jun 2007
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Estelle wrote:
Quote:
I wouldn't say I don't like Nora Roberts, but I often find her just okay. I almost hate saying this, because I admire her a lot based on her online presence.


That's my view too. I've tried a few of her books but I don't connect with them and never get the impetus to finish them but she's always so very classy online, she always has something interesting to say.

I tried reading High Noon today, but couldn't bring myself to finish it. I pretty much only read Roberts' hardcovers, but it's still the first time this has happened with one of her books. I got about 100 pages in, said to myself, "When's the story gonna start?" realized I still had more than 350 pages to go, and said, "Forget it."

Quote:
I am hopeful (but wary) of having similar luck with Linda Howard's new one that is due out soon, the rom/suspense novel...has anyone heard any early buzz??

I read this one immediately prior to attempting High Noon and sped through it. It's not her best book, but since I did actually finish the book, unlike High Noon and whatever Linda Howard's 2006 hardcover was called, it gets a passing grade from me.
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4225
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Trisha wrote:
I tried reading High Noon today, but couldn't bring myself to finish it. [....] I got about 100 pages in, said to myself, "When's the story gonna start?" realized I still had more than 350 pages to go, and said, "Forget it."

I really can identify with what you experienced, Trisha. It's happened to me several times with different books that have been recommended highly here and I just couldn't get with the program. In fact, it's happened with more than a couple of Roberts' books too. Most recently--Northern Lights and Angels Fall. I even attempted a second try with Angels Fall and just didn't make it. But then I loved Blue Smoke and I believe it was less popular with readers. I've said it before, but book recommending is a tough road to hoe when you're on a message board with as many diverse readers as we have here. You spill your guts anyway when a book resonates with you and realize it will either be a hit or miss with others, regardless of your own opinion.
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cykamat



Joined: 28 Mar 2007
Posts: 40

PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2007 11:34 pm    Post subject: Roberts' standalones Reply with quote

I first discovered Nora Roberts in her categories, long after they were first published. I love her J.D. Robb series, have generally loved (or at least enjoyed her categories), and almost always happily devour her trilogies (although I still can't make myself start the vampire set from last year).

But her annual standalones? Utterly hit-or-miss for me. Some I loved (Birthright, Blue Smoke), some were just "meh", some - just didn't like them at all.

I enjoyed High Noon. Yes, Duncan was another almost-too-perfect hero (why, for instance did he have to be a millionaire - I would have loved him as a cab-driving bartender!) And yes, the book definitely felt like a milder version of Roarke and Eve.

But it was a solid read for me, and I really enjoyed the family (blood or otherwise) relationships for both the heroine and the hero. I - like one of the other posters - had read this right after Linda Howard's Up Close and Dangerous, which I also strongly enjoyed. I wish I'd read something else in between, because I suspect I would have loved this, if I wasn't still thinking about how much I liked the couple in Howard's book!
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Leigh



Joined: 29 May 2007
Posts: 2689

PostPosted: Thu Aug 02, 2007 6:58 pm    Post subject: High Noon Reply with quote

Nora Roberts books for the most part C books for me. I don't love them and I don't hate them but I usually read them. She has a way of pulling you in. I suspect you are wondering why C books then. I usually don't like her characters or some of the action of her characters. However I was really enjoying High Noon. Hero and Heroine are not brash or obnoxious but very believable and nice, almost normal people. Then I come across the very violent scene. Talk about taking me out of the story. I took a break and started reading it again but never got back the feeling of I am loving this story. I felt like the horror of what happen was discounted because this person wasn't perfect. Then the ending felt rushed to me

Kudos to Roberts for finally getting passed the psycho antagonist. This book and her last one had believable bad guys. I loved the heroine's job, and thought that a lot of research went into making the hostage situation dialogue real. I liked Duncan and yes he did seem like a waterdowned version of Roarke. But at least Phoebe didn't go around saying bite me.

I am not sure what Nora was trying for when she wrote Carly. She came across as cute at first but later just seemed a little manipulative for a child.

I not sure that I would ever re-read thi s -not enough time with the happy ending, and the excessive violence.
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Allyson



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 567

PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry to bump an old topic, but I just finished this and wanted to comment.

I really liked the story, but found it rather similar to 'Blue Smoke', which I read not all that long ago. Police heroine with close family relationships, those relationships emphasized in the book; a traumatic childhood event that led her to an older male mentor who got her to where she was, and an evil dude from her past out to get her, harming the people in her life to damage her, with a fair bit of mysterious villain POV all about the bad things he wants to do to the heroine.

I liked the heroine, and I liked the family relationships in both books. And in both books I really could've done without the stalker plotline, especially those passages from his POV. I just don't usually find villain POV to be all that interesting or illuminating--it's either shock value or really vague. I'm getting a bit tired of romantic suspense plotlines involving the heroine being stalked.

But even with those gripes, I did like the book. I liked the first part involving her conflict with the guy who assaulted her; thought that was well-handled. And Duncan and Phoebe's relationship definitely worked for me. One thing the review mentions, and that I think Nora Roberts generally handles well, is the way the relationship develops. Nothing too over the top, but rather going on dates and getting to know each other 'normally' before the real crazy stuff happens.
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Diana



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 1044
Location: Washington DC

PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pretty amazing how Nora can do it all. I prefer her darker/edgier books to the her sweet ones. A reads for me are Angels Fall, Northern Lights, Carolina Moon and I lovelovelove the In Death series. High Noon and Blue Smoke (agree that these two are very similar) are B/C reads for me -- entertaining but not real substantive.

Contradicting myself here, Chesapeake Blue is just dripping with sap and I adore that book. I love the whole Chesapeake Bay series, but CB just slays me. The only thing wrong with CB is that Aubrey character who is the epitome of the crass/ballsy/crude/adolescent female Nora occasionally slips in. Aubrey actually says things like gimme my present, hand it over and nobody gets hurt. It's jarring to come across a cartoony character in a Nora book when she's so adept at in depth characterization.
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
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Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 9:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I loved High Noon a lot. In listening to why it didn't rank very high on both of your scales, I thought back to why it resonated with me so well. I really liked Phoebe--Duncan, too, but it was Pheobe that made such an impression. I liked how Roberts drew her character and how she related to her family and close family friends. I recall how she tried to deal with her mother's issues and did the best she could under the circumstances. Maybe not everyone would agree with her methods, but they worked for her and her mom. I liked how everything wasn't tied in a neat little bow at the end, except that you knew these concerns were still being addressed and somehow there would be a high enough success rate. I usually don't like super-rich heroes, but Duncan worked for me. Maybe because his fortune came later and he tried to remain true to himself. Maybe I just hadn't had a good book to read in a while and this one filled the space. Who knows? I absolutely enjoyed it and hope she has a sequel; but even if she doesn't, it's okay.

Now Northern Lights was an entirely different ballgame for me. Totally disliked it. Go figure. Rolling Eyes
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Diana



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 1044
Location: Washington DC

PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tee wrote:
I recall how she tried to deal with her mother's issues and did the best she could under the circumstances. Maybe not everyone would agree with her methods, but they worked for her and her mom.


Her methods didn't work for her or for her mom and that was the problem. I had very little sympathy for mom because she passively/aggressively resisted the concept of "getting well." There she was in the bosom of a loving family who tolerated and overindulged her illness and she wallowed in it. IIRC she dropped out of therapy because she couldn't handle it. She was quite content to live as a vaporish southern belle regardless of the burden she was to her daughter and granddaughter. Phoebe wasn't doing any of them any good with her acceptance.

On the other hand, Reece in Angels Falls fought with everything she had to conquer her PTSD. Every time she was knocked down she got back up again. She took advantage of the professional help available to her, removed herself from sympathetic and enabling family and friends, and set out on her own to conquer her illness. Now that is a heroine. Cool
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
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Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Diana wrote:
Her methods didn't work for her or for her mom and that was the problem. I had very little sympathy for mom because she passively/aggressively resisted the concept of "getting well." There she was in the bosom of a loving family who tolerated and overindulged her illness and she wallowed in it. IIRC she dropped out of therapy because she couldn't handle it. She was quite content to live as a vaporish southern belle regardless of the burden she was to her daughter and granddaughter. Phoebe wasn't doing any of them any good with her acceptance.

Disagree. Her mother, granted, didn't help all that much. But under the circumstances, as I see it, being elderly, it's usually more difficult to submit to change as younger people can do. (I said usually, not always.) She provided band-aids for her mom; and in this case, they were working. If Phoebe didn't mind the inconvenience, then sometimes that can be the way to go. By the way, I am totally not speaking from a professional point of view. But sometimes in life, we make do with the materials we have at hand and make decisions that other people may not understand.

Diana wrote:
On the other hand, Reece in Angels Falls fought with everything she had to conquer her PTSD. Every time she was knocked down she got back up again. She took advantage of the professional help available to her, removed herself from sympathetic and enabling family and friends, and set out on her own to conquer her illness. Now that is a heroine. Cool

I did not like Angels Fall at all. But I won't deny that Reece tried to fight back. Too bad the entire story and "mystery" wasn't a bit more interesting. I may have stuck with it to the end.

In real life, when some people have their backs to the wall with caregiving for spouses, children and/or relatives, I believe they are the true heroes who struggle to do the right thing and make the right decisions. Sometimes a person doesn't always know what those "right" choices are, but they make them just the same with the knowledge they have at the time and their resources. I took Phoebe as being one of those people who tried to do the right thing by everyone. It doesn't always work, but the attempt is there. We step thru life not always having the correct answer but wanting to do good. It isn't always a clear "this way" or "that way" choice.
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Allyson



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 567

PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2008 11:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Phoebe's dynamic with her family, the way she dealt with her mother and daughter and repercussions of what happened in her childhood, were one of the strongest parts of the book for me. I may not have understood where Essie was coming from exactly, but I did sympathize to a degree.

I'd say High Noon was a B for me--probably would've been a B+ had I not read Blue Smoke first. The Duncan/Phoebe bits were really good, and I loved Phoebe as a character (Duncan was, personality-wise, one of my favourite types of heroes, but I felt making him crazy rich was unnecessary...didn't really take away from the story though). It was the stalker/suspense plotline I could've lived without.

I really want to read 'Northern Lights' and see if the heroine annoys me as well now...I usually have a higher tolerance for that than many readers here, so it remains to be seen I suppose!
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4225
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 7:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Allyson wrote:
Phoebe's dynamic with her family, the way she dealt with her mother and daughter and repercussions of what happened in her childhood, were one of the strongest parts of the book for me.

Yes, Allyson, I agree with you here. I thought Roberts drew Phoebe's relationship with her family and close friends very well, also. It was a vital part of the story, along with her attachment to Duncan and then to her work.
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