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Midnight's Warrior
Donna Grant
Angels' Flight (Angels' Pawn #0.5, Angels' Judgment #1.5, Angel's Wolf #4.5, Angels' Dance #4.75)
Nalini Singh
A Question of Pride - Michelle Reid 1.5 starsI had a lot of problems with this story on many different levels. I am going to basically tell the story. You can be your own judge.The leading lady, Clea, is a 20 year old virgin who was seduced by her 14-years-older-than-her boss, Max. The story begins on a Friday morning after the lead male has woken up in the lead female's flat. He has the boss attitude now just as he has done for the past 5 months. Outside of her bed, she has never been invited to his house, and he has been treating her like the demanding boss that he is. When he starts nagging about she is going o be late to work, she reminds him that she has a meeting with an old friend in the morning; a meeting scheduled way in advance. She has even engaged another PA to be there for him in the morning. It turns out not to be a meeting with a friend but instead an appointment with a gynecologist who confirms she is 3 months pregnant. Clea decides she has to leave the relationship because it is all her fault that she got pregnant - he never wanted anything but a casual relationship, and she was "responsible for the birth control". She goes back to the office, and Max leaves early for a "business meeting." She goes to his office and drinks half a bottle of hard scotch, crying her eyes out because she knows her love for him is unrequited. She doesn't want him to be trapped by taking care of what was "her responsibility". He shows up at midnight at her flat saying his business dinner didn't go as he expected and demands sex. She makes an excuse by saying she is having her monthlies. He then decides maybe they can each take the weekend off and relax individually and therefore he will give away the theater tickets that she has purchased for the following nights. Clea spends the entire weekend drinking hard liquor and crying. Come Monday morning, she gets a phone call from another woman who has to cancel her dinner plans with her boyfriend - Max - and since her boyfriend is going to see his mom on Tuesday for a week, that she will see him the week after. She also says how her boyfriends doesn't want her to call him at work but this is an emergency. She also talks about her dinner date with him on Friday and the dinner and theater on Saturday. Because Clea knows that poor Max hates being uncomfortable, she advises the other woman to not mention the phone call and instead to call his apartment and leave the message with his house keeper. Clea then goes to the office manager, the only person who knows about her relationship with Max, and asks him if she could give her notice and only work for the remainder of this week (when Max is away) and asks nothing to be said to Max about her leaving. The manager, who happens to be a friend of her step father, has found out about Clea's morning sickness and tells Clea to tell Max that he is also responsible and that she should not shoulder all the responsibilities for a child. Clea says she cannot because she LOVES Max and she doesn't want to destroy his life. He also tells her about a temporary job opportunity to be a PA with another firm. Anyway, Clea takes a week off in between jobs and finds out she is a beneficiary of a trust that matures up in few months when she turns 21, a trust set by her late Italian father, and that she won't have to work for few years after her baby is born. She also finds out her mother is pregnant and due at the same exact time as she is. She also makes a decision to tell Max about her pregnancy but not to take a dime from him. Max shows up at her apartment within few hours after she gets back home. After he hears about her pregnancy, he becomes very violent and grabs her with one arm, exerting a lot of force, while trying to hit her with the other arm. She faints. He gives her almost a half a bottle of whisky because she is cold and then suggests they should get married. She tells him that she knows it is not FAIR to him that she was irresponsible and missed a day or two of taking her Birth control pills - that he is free to go and she doesn't want anything from him but he can be part of his kid's life if he chooses to be. Well, Max does exactly that. According to a conversation they have, Clea comments on Max taking on 4 different lovers within a month, he doesn't deny it. While Max is having his fun and buying a brand new Bentley to impress his new lovers, Clea is working her arse off in months of June and July with no access to air conditioning. We also read about Clea continuing to drink during her pregnancy and being anemic and working too much and too hard and having dizzy spells through out the last few months. The lightning hit Max one day when he notices how desirable Clea still is, he asks her to set up a meeting so he can meet her mom and step father and she should meet his mother, this is toward the end of July. He finally takes the now-6-months pregnant Cleo to his apartment for the first time, whereupon he has sex with her, ending with her passing out cold. He calls her doctor who wants to admit her at the hospital but Max decides his house keeper (who, by the way, hates Clea because she thinks Clea is a gold digger and taking advantage of her boss with another man's baby) can take care of Clea. While Clea is out cold for half a day, Max calls Clea's parents who pack her stuff from her flat so she can be with Max, he also loans one of his secretaries to Clea's new boss. The next day, Max's mother shows up and Clea tells him why she is not marrying her son. Max's mom says she knows her son is a rake and Clea is stupid. She should marry her son and take him for all he is worth before she divorce him. In the mean time Max and Clea are having sex every chance they can have in that week. The week ends at a summer barbecue party at Clea's mom cottage, where Clea is accused of being a jealous, manipulative bitch by her step father because she is not agreeing to marry Max and change her future kid's status from being a bastard. Clea starts hyperventilating and saying that is not true, she is doing it all for Max because he deserves better than her or being trapped by one woman. Max of course hears this and says he loves Clea too and all those other woman meant nothing to him, that he desires Clea the most, he also says he didn't have sex with those other women (yeah, right). Anyway, the book ends with Max and Clea getting married and Clea and her mother giving birth to two healthy boys within hours of each other!1. It should be noted that this book was published in 1988 - not 1950's or 1960's, when people were ignorant on the severity of effects of alcohol consumption on a baby in utero or Fetal alcohol syndrome.2. I have real problem with an A***hole raising his hand to beat a pregnant woman. This guy was a poster child for a**holes everywhere.3. I REALLY have problem when female authors think the lead female character is lovely when she takes whatever is handed to her by the lead male character. They are not independent or in love for taking a crumb of affection, they are being stupid.The name of the book should not have been "A Question of Pride", it should have been a "Question of Stupidity".