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The Theory of the Leisure Class (Modern Library Classics)
Thorstein Veblen, Alan Wolfe
Unforgiven - Mary Balogh Kenneth Woodfall returns from war to his ancestral home. There, he finds that the girl he loved in childhood, Moira Hayes, has fallen on hard times and is engaged to marry a foolish prig. Sparks fly when Moira and Kenneth meet, and despite themselves they share one last waltz. Moira overhears Kenneth's relatives gossiping and is so upset that she immediately sets out walking for home.

In a blizzard. In her ball gown.

Kenneth chases after her on foot, and they take shelter in a little unheated cabin. And then the stupidst thing I have possibly ever read in a romance novel takes place. Kenneth says they have to share body heat. OK, sure. So they take off their clothes and spoon. But then he's like, no, that's not enough sharing, I have to be inside you or else we'll die of cold? And she takes him seriously? And they have dispassionate sex, like they're just doing it to save their lives, and then go their separate ways. WAAAAAHhhh?

Anyway, of course she ends up pregnant. It's the rule of soap operas everywhere. And of course she refuses to tell him. And of course he eventually finds out, and they feel forced to marry, and she has a miscarriage. The miscarriage is particularly convenient because A)then their kid doesn't have to grow up as basically a bastard and B)this way they can each weep and realize how much they mean to each other. I didn't much like this book, I didn't like the hero in the least, and I especially didn't like that his mean-spirited female relations (who provided so much driving force and narrative tension) randomly become kind-hearted in the last few pages.