Forever Amber: The Plague is Over

As I’ve been a very neglectful blogger these past months, I thought I’d try something new.  I’m going to blog my books as I read them.  I have a horrid habit of “forgetting” to blog my books once I finish them and have, to my shame, acculmulated a backlist of ‘books read never to be reviewed.’

I’ve been reading Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor for the past two weeks.  It clocks in at a monsterous 900+ pages and, even reading it during work hours, I don’t seem to be making a dent in this mother.  I’m exhausted, folks.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s the good kind of exhausted, the smoke a cig after reading kind of exertion.

Today, I read through the Great London Plague 1665, most of which I read while eating lunch and dinner.  I have a cast iron stomach and could theoretically read the most revolting scenes while eating.  When I was enrolled in Microbiology a lifetime ago, I recall reading about genital herpes while snacking on a sandwich.  Yup.   Nothing could gross me out.

And the Plague as portrayed in Forever Amber is all kinds of nasty—swollen, pus-spouting lymph nodes, projectile vomiting, tongue fungus—Amber nurses her on-again-off-again lover through it all.  Call me crazy, but I love it in books when the main character, usually the heroine, is charged with the task of nursing her family, lover, or friend through a debilitating disease.  Remember in The Witch of Blackbird Pond when Kit nurses Judith and Mercy through some sort of scarlet fever epidemic?   Should the bubonic plague ever come to town, I know exactly what to do.   The answer is a poultice made from boiled mustard or onions, my friends.   So if you ever come down with the plague, come to me, I’ll Florence Nightingale you all night long.

Marie Antoinette wooden jigsaw puzzle - Handcut jigsaw puzzle made in France

After some three months of presiding over Lord Carlton’s bedside, he still refuses to marry Amber.  WTF!   Why is he doing this to her?   Why is he doing this to me? At first, I had Bruce Carlton figured for a cad, a player, a man-whore who is adversed to marriage.  But then he tells her that he plans to marry one day, just not her.  Why?!  What’s wrong with her?  She’s his match in every way, the love of his life, why not just make it legit?

I’m tearing my hair out by the roots.   Why is this love story so infuriating?  Why can’t they just get together?   Why do women always fall for men that treat them like crap?   Why am I asking so many questions?

Back to reading.


8 thoughts on “Forever Amber: The Plague is Over”

  1. It has been years since I first red Forever Amber, but I remember really liking it. I recommend it quite often to readers and think that it is classic.

    Cheers, Laurel Ann

  2. Dear T.Y. I’ve been reading your blog for just two weeks. I do really like it, as for a long time I’ve been reading only professional literature (in marketing, economics,etc).So, please to meet you.
    I would like to comment on your rhetorical question “Why do women always fall for men that treat them like crap?”
    If men will treat them in a good way, women (most of them
    ), will take it for granted, and stop being interested in the relationships. Unfortunately, women need to love, then to be loved:(

  3. i have read the book a loooong time ago and enjoyed reading it. i am presently looking for a copy of the book. where can i get one? thank you.

  4. hi t.y.
    i laughed reading your blog. I have just finished reading forever amber. i first read it 20 years ago…
    it’s a heart rending ending! Have you fiished it yet?

  5. “Why is this love story so infuriating?” This was the very question that raged in my mind as I hurled this book away. I wrote a review on this book as well and feel the same way as you do. Women do fall in love with men who treat them like come–but this is why I read love stories, to escape reality and find hope through these tales. Forever Amber did not to that. It just showed how pathetic women in love could be, and what a jerk men are. Yes, it’s a great historical novel. But this is NOT a “great love story” as so many call it.

    Thanks for this review! I really enjoyed reading it.


  6. i’ve never throw a book so far across the room. not worth the 972 pages! set yourself up for disappointment….even though this post was over a year ago, i’m sure you’ve read it by now.

    screw lord carlton. asshole.

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