A Southern gentleman and a Southern belle fall in love, but through the malicious intervention of the belle's female cousin, they both believe they spurned each other, and now have to deal with wounded pride and heart break when they unexpectedly meet again, their feelings as strong as ever. This florid and overwrought, thinly plotted bodice-ripper does not pretend to be more than what it appears to be. Set in the American South during the Reconstruction era, this story centers on Brad and Kathlyn, who meet and fall in love and have a tryst one summer night outside Kathyn's plantation home. Unknown to them, Kat's jealous cousin Rachel sees the whole encounter, and sabotages their romance by forging letters to each of the lovers, convincing them that they are hated by the other.
They meet again when Brad returns to Georgia to run his family bank, and at first hate each other while also being attracted to each other. But the letters are still between them. They start cautiously getting to know each other again, but Rachel is still jealous. When Kat and Brad go on a quest to hunt down some documents necessary to complete the sale of property that Kat wants to sell because she has no money, Rachel tries to have them separated, first by stealing their ferry tickets before they leave, forcing them to beg passage onto a riverboat with low-brow sorts, or tries to have Kat kidnapped by Indians, which Kat escapes. She finally poisons Kat's birds when she sees that her attempts to drive a wedge between the couple are just confusing them instead of separating them. Brad grows more protective of Kat, firing his own employees who don't give Kat favorable terms on her property dealings and buying her investments himself. Eventually Kat walks in on Rachel in the middle of scheming another sabotage plot, and all the truth comes to light. Brad has Rachel arrested for the murder of her father, which Rachel did as a mere experiment with poison, and marries Kat, and they live happily ever after.
Yes, that really is the mad, paper-thin plot of this book. I read it on a dare.
Best part of story, including ending:
Nothing. It's horrible.
Best scene in story:
The scene in which Rachel poisons Kathlyn's birds is cartoonishly evil, and hence funny.
Opinion about the main character:
Nothing. She's dumb as a rock and he's arrogant, controlling, unpleasant and also dumb as a rock. Match made in heaven, I suppose.