The Captain's Lady by Lorhainne Eckhart
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Well, that was a nice change from my last book! I did enjoy this quite a bit, but I would not recommend this book if you don't like men with Stone Age era ideas about women. The hero in this book actually believes all women should be at home raising their babies and taking care of their husbands. Yes, really!!!! I had to read the paragraph out loud to my sister in which he laid down the rules with his new wife, our intrepid heroine. He told her that he needs to be in charge and call the shots. There would be no career for her, ever! She would be at home, taking care of his kids. Here is the great thing about fiction: I don't have read a book that mirrors my life. I am glad for that, because I would not have liked this book if I felt that way.
I liked Eric, for the most part. He was gentle and loving with Abby. In general, I didn't care for how he interacted with women, although I didn't think he deserved the sexual harrassment suit a 'crazy' woman corpsman filed against him. His attitude about women not belonging in the military rubbed me the wrong way. But, I respect that he was honest about his feelings. He didn't go out of his way to mistreat the female sailors under his command. He mainly avoided them. I have to be honest and say that I don't think I would like him much in real life. Let's just say we have the opposite ideas of womens' roles in society and wifehood. I'll leave it at that. I wish the author had delved more into his past so I could better understand his thing about women. He wasn't a misogynist, per se. He just tended to compartmentalize women and didn't have much to do with them. It was interesting how quickly Abby worked her way into his heart. It made sense, because she was just the kind of woman he was looking for. She softened the rough, lonely places inside of him. She saw him as her hero. He needed that.
Abby needed a protector and a man who would take care of her. She was totally fine with his dictate about his expectations for her as his wife. She said all she'd ever wanted was to be a wife and mother, and to take care of her husband. I have always wanted to get married and have kids, but I definitely had a lot more goals than just that. So, I can't identify. Despite that fact, I liked Abby. I thought she was a strong woman, for what she'd been through. She was also very loving. She didn't let Eric walk on her, but I think she's somewhat submissive, at the same time. That works for their relationship.
As far as writing, I thought some of that was a little rough. I felt that it could have used a couple of revisions to make the writing flow a little better, because some of the phrasing and word choice seemed awkward. Having said that, this was a pretty compelling story. Ms. Eckhart was able to convey the powerful connection between Eric and Abby very well. I think that the plot involving the man who had bought Abby and was the father of her child was left as a pretty big loose end. I think that Abby probably should have had a little more reticence about sexual intimacy after her experience in captivity. I would have liked to see a little more closure with that whole situation. Also, I felt like I didn't really get to see why Gail Carruthers, the sailor who filed the sexual harrassment charge, was so loony. I would have liked more insight into that. Additionally, for those who don't like 'head-hopping', there is a lot of that in this book. But, all in all, this was a good read. It was interesting and a good love story.
If you want a quick read with a hero who has some very antiquated ideas about women, but is a pretty nice guy in most of the ways that count, I think you'd like this book. With my bizarre fascination with the Navy, I enjoyed the views of life on a battleship. I thought the secondary characters were pretty interesting, although not heavily developed. But then, this was a short romance.
In summary, this book came along right when I needed it. It was enjoyable and interesting. I thought the love story was good and believable. That's why I'd give it four stars.
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