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Sleepless at Midnight

 
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Lynda X



Joined: 05 Apr 2007
Posts: 1471

PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 7:26 pm    Post subject: Sleepless at Midnight Reply with quote

I liked "Sleepless at Midnight," but I could have liked it a lot more if it had been edited down and if some of the unbelievable plot contrivances had been eliminated. I liked Matthew and Sarah, the h&h. Seeing him come to recognize, esteem, and then to love Sarah's wonderful qualities was great fun. In turn, her not being able to believe that he finds her beautiful and is attracted to her is totally believable, and D'Alessandrio did not have her disbelief last too long. As sometimes happens in real life, somehow, when one person finds another attractive, other people do too, and it was charming that other men began to notice Sarah. Although she is not your typical Regency or Victorian miss, her uniqueness is not "she is really a 21st century woman, dressed in long gowns" variety. However. . .
SPOILERS

Basically, Matthew has been digging holes in his estate at night, secretly, because on his deathbed, Matthew's father told him that he had buried money he had won gambling. Why a nobleman would not have overseen the excavation of his gardens is beyond me. Surely, he could come up with an excuse, if he really felt that he needed to explain to his help--an assumption I find mildly ridiculous, but not as ridiculous as a man digging random holes at night for over a year. I became bored with Matthew and Sarah's attempts to track down the father's vague clues, and frankly, my dear, I didn't give a damn.

But what really irritated me was Matthew's vow to his father that he would marry within a year, causing him to race before the deadline to find the money so he won't have to marry an heiress. I, like most people, admire people who fulfill their promises, but Matthew did not appear honorable, he just appeared stupid. It took him FOREVER to decide to marry Sarah, in spite of her not having money.

The only quibble I have with Sarah is that she and the other members of her book club decide to make a stuffed "ideal" man from the clothing they borrow from the rooms of the gentleman at the party. This sets up Sarah seeing Matthew bathing, the beginning of her attraction to him. D'Alessandro should have come up with a more believable device; after all, why would GROWN WOMEN want to stuff an "ideal" man? Later, Matthew, seeing the puppet, assumes he is real. Thankfully, that lasts only a short time.

I don't know why D'Allessandro felt it necessary to include these plot items, but maybe for their humor (which doesn't work, IMO). It's also possible that she thought they provided the necessary tension to the book, but they didn't. In a romance, there must be a believable impediment to prevent the marriage, and with two such decent, adult characters, that's difficult to manage. The niceness of both kept me reading, but there was little suspense or tension in "Sleepless at Midnight."
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Schola



Joined: 10 Jun 2007
Posts: 1867

PostPosted: Sun Jun 22, 2008 1:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Sleepless at Midnight Reply with quote

Lynda X wrote:
The only quibble I have with Sarah is that she and the other members of her book club decide to make a stuffed "ideal" man from the clothing they borrow from the rooms of the gentleman at the party. This sets up Sarah seeing Matthew bathing, the beginning of her attraction to him. D'Alessandro should have come up with a more believable device; after all, why would GROWN WOMEN want to stuff an "ideal" man? Later, Matthew, seeing the puppet, assumes he is real. Thankfully, that lasts only a short time.


+IHS+

Laughing It was that game with the stuffed man which made me have a hard time thinking of Sarah and her friends as grown women. That scavenger hunt seemed so much like stuff I did when I was a teenager!

I'd say the "ideal man" device was also D'Alessandro's way of getting all her ducks in a row--that is, hinting which pairings to expect in future books. Each future heroine will end up with the man whose article of clothing she "borrowed."

Having said that, yeah, it's still very strange. Razz
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"To be in a romance is to be in uncongenial surroundings. To be born into this earth is to be born into uncongenial surroundings, hence to be born into a romance." (G.K. Chesterton)
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panthercrawl



Joined: 28 May 2008
Posts: 404

PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the plot points you mentioned were a bit unbelievable but I also feel that I would follow Jackie D'Allesandro into a pit of lava because she really makes me laugh out loud during her stories. The first two chapters of the book that follows this one (cant remember the name of it) is a conversation between Matthew and his best friend (hero) and Sarah and her sister (heroine) and I laughed the entire time. Now as far as stuffing the 'ideal man' I have to suppose that life was pretty boring in the country for young English women. (thats all I can come up with)

And yes, you can tell from the second book of the series that the ideal man may be a match up with whoever they stole from.

The thing I didnt like about this book was that the author was constantly putting down the heroine. Everyone around her seemed to thrive on her personality but we did have to hear over and over again that she was not beautiful. ( I get it, she was a troll with glasses )

That being said, cant wait till the next one comes out.

Very Happy
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roseisa



Joined: 25 Mar 2007
Posts: 334
Location: CA

PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 8:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just started it last night. Love the dog Danford, lots of good sense there. I'm thinking Julia's story will be next with the American Jensen Logan? We shall see, JacquieD books are always an easy read for me Smile
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