You Belong to Me

Johanna Lindsey, Author
Johanna Lindsey, Author Avon Books $7.99 (432p) ISBN 978-0-380-76258-3
Reviewed on: 10/31/1994
Release date: 11/01/1994
Hardcover - 978-1-56895-213-0
Ebook - 432 pages - 978-0-06-210674-2
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With anger and bitterness permeating nearly every page, it's doubtful Lindsey's sequel to Once a Princess will attract any new readers. Set in 1836 Russia-though the novel is conspicuously short on historic atmosphere and long on contemporary terminology-Baroness Alexandra Rubliov is a woman beyond her own time, something of a female cossack who wields a whip and breeds and trains her own line of white horses. Her unconventionality and blunt way of speaking her mind make her undesirable in the marriage market. Her desperate father presents what he swears is a long-standing betrothal between Alexandra and Count Vasili Petroff. It is, in fact, a contract of his own creation, but conveniently indisputable because Vasili's father is dead. Alexandra is incensed but honor-bound to comply. Only if the count should break the contract would she be free. So she sets out to insult and ridicule him at every turn and strives to be as physically repulsive as possible, eating like a pig and going for days without bathing. Vasili is a too-handsome man who beds women as easily as elephants eat peanuts. Of the two, however, Vasili is the more sympathetic, especially as Alexandra proves time after time, by word and deed, that she is a better man than he. Reminiscent of the movie The War of the Roses, the couple scrap it out all the way, but in the very last pages they declare a semi-peace and hope for love and romance looms on the horizon. (Nov.)
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